Tens of millions of people struggle with addiction in the US to an annual cost of over $400 billion. While these numbers show the scope of the problem, they don’t shed light on what individuals can do to help themselves.

Even if you’re aware that substance abuse programs exist, you might not understand what they are or how they work.

If that’s you, keep reading for an overview of the common treatment programs and how they work.

1. Peer Support Groups

Peer support groups, such as Alcoholics Anonymous, are one of the most common programs for substance abuse. Peer support groups work on a voluntary basis and don’t typically include professional staff. Instead, a peer leader runs meetings where people share their struggles, victories, and coping techniques.

Peer support groups often use either a 12-step approach or an alternative like SMART Recovery.

2. Detox

While not typically a standalone treatment, detox plays a crucial part in the recovery process. Detox involves three main concerns.

First, it helps you get whatever drug you take out of your system. Second, it typically helps you manage withdrawal symptoms with non-addictive medications. Finally, it begins the treatment process by introducing ideas you explore more fully in full-blown treatment programs.

You can go here for more drug addiction treatment information, such as the role of different kinds of programs.

3. Partial Hospitalization Program

PHP sits in a middle ground between outpatient and residential rehab programs. In PHP, you sleep at home but spend most of your waking hours at a hospital or mental health facility.

You participate in group meetings, individual counseling, skill-building, and educational courses. PHP functions as a very intensive form of treatment while avoiding some pitfalls of admitting you for inpatient treatment.

4. Outpatient Rehab

Outpatient rehab typically focuses on those who cannot afford to be away from their daily lives long-term. For example, a single father likely cannot take a month off from work.

Outpatient programs offer a range of standard treatments such as group meetings, 12-step integration, and education. They typically confine treatment times to evenings and weekends. This lets you keep working and meet family obligations.

5. Residential Rehab

Residential or inpatient rehab programs typically offer the most intensive treatment programs. In residential programs, you remain at the rehab facility for the entire time. In most cases, the minimum time is around a month but can run for much longer.

You receive typical treatments, such as counseling and group. Some residential programs also offer an expanded set of options, such as nutrition therapy, holistic techniques, and even nature therapy.

Parting Thoughts on Common Substance Abuse Programs

Your circumstances will decide which of these substance abuse programs will work best for you.

For some, the intensive nature of residential rehab offers the best hope of long-term recovery. For others, only the flexibility of outpatient programs will let them seek treatment and meet their obligations.

Feel like you’re alone in your struggle with substance abuse? Check out some of our other articles that discuss how professional athletes work through their addictions.