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How Long Does Addiction Treatment Take?

Learn how long addiction treatment takes from Dr. Paul Hokemeyer in this Howcast video.


Typically, when we think of treatment, we think of 28 days. That's the model that has been around for a long time. We know, though, that there's a lot of good data that shows that 28 days is just the beginning, that it gives a person just the basic baseline in recovery. It's critically important. It's critically important that the person be able to abstain from drugs and alcohol for those 28 days to get a good, strong foundation in their recovery.

We also know that the longer that the person can stay in recovery and be in a program of recovery, the higher the chances of staying successful for the rest of their life. So the goal, of course, is to get sober and stay sober for the rest of your life.

In my experience, people who have the greatest success are those who do the 28 days of treatment and then are able to do a 60 and a 90 day further commitment to their treatment. We know from the way that the brain works and the way the brain is wired, that habits take around 90 days to change.

So if the person can commit to a program of recovery, if they can commit to a structured recovery environment for 90 days, their chances of success of staying sober increase exponentially.

So again, it's very important to remember that 28 days, a month, is the baseline. And then, anything in addition to that will incredibly enhance the person's recovery and chances of staying sober for life.

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