Sober living homes offer a safe and supportive environment to people who have successfully completed a medical detox and addiction treatment program but are not yet comfortable with the idea of living on their own without alcohol and drug use.
Sober living can be hugely beneficial, offering the freedom to grow after addiction with the support needed to avoid relapse. Is sober living the right choice for you after rehab?
What Are the Benefits of Sober Living?
Residents can take advantage of a number of benefits in a sober living environment. Though there are different types of sober living programs that offer more or less in terms of continued therapeutic recovery and treatment, in general, most residents will be able to enjoy the benefits of:
- On-site staff support: In some cases, a counselor or house manager is in residence 24/7, and in other cases, there may be on-site support only during certain hours. In all cases, there is some support to help residents stay sober, stick to their recovery goals, interact with each other positively, and care for the house.
- Recovery support: Whether or not there is on-site 12-step meetings or therapy options, there is always support of continued therapeutic growth in recovery. In fact, some sober living homes require residents to attend a certain number of 12-step meetings out in the community, go to regular therapy sessions, and/or keep up with mental health treatment in order to remain in the house.
- Accountability: Most sober living homes will ensure that residents are maintaining their commitment to sobriety through random drug tests. Just knowing that this is a possibility can help residents to stay sober when they feel tempted to relapse.
- Freedom to build a new life: While residents will need to keep up with certain requirements in order to continue living in the home, they will have the freedom to make progress toward other personal goals. This will vary from person to person, but often includes looking for employment, finding a new home when the time is right, managing legal commitments, working on family relationships, and more.
- Practice in interpersonal skills: Living with people and learning how to get along is an important part of recovery, and in the context of sober living, this is done with support and an emphasis on positivity and respect. This is not only useful for residents while they live in the home, but it will also empower them to build and maintain strong relationships in all aspects of their lives in recovery.
If you answered “no” to any of these questions, then sober living may be the best option for your success in recovery.
Not everyone needs sober living, but for some people, it is a critical part of their growth in early recovery and helps them to establish themselves more securely in sobriety before heading out on their own. Not sure if sober living is a good choice for you? Consider the answers to the following:
- Are you secure in your ability to avoid relapse should you come across a “triggering” situation when you leave treatment?
- Are you secure in your treatment and therapy options in the community? That is, if you are receiving mental health treatment, do you have a therapist, psychiatrist, or physician you are working with who will continue to provide you with the medication and treatment you need?
- Do you have somewhere clean and sober to live after treatment? That is, will you be living with people who will agree to keep drugs and alcohol out of the house and remain sober when in the home in order to support your ability to avoid relapse?
- Do you have a job that provides enough income to pay your rent, utilities, car payment, and other bills?
For some people, it is not so much a question of if sober living is the best option but when is the best time to transition from rehab into the new environment. The answer to this question will vary depending upon the details of the person’s experience in treatment as well as their stability in sobriety.
For some patients, 30 days is a sufficient length of time to undergo detox, shed the withdrawal symptoms associated with the cessation of drug and alcohol use, and feel confident enough in their progress in therapy that they will be able to successfully avoid relapse.
However, for other patients, 90 days, or even 120 days, is not enough to stabilize in recovery and be prepared for sober living. This may be due to significant co-occurring mental health issues, false starts in recovery, and/or a desire to take things at a slower pace and get more sober time under their belt before making the transition.
What Is Right for You?
If you are in drug rehab and considering the option of sober living, discuss it with your therapist and/or treatment team. They will be able to answer your questions about what to expect, help you determine whether or not you are ready to move forward in recovery, and help you to create a treatment plan that will carry you through sober living and beyond. Learn more about the treatment services that will help you to stabilize in sobriety today. Call Axis at the phone number above now.