There is no way around the simple truth that, nationally, most people who enter rehab will not remain sober, assuming that they’re able to complete their treatment programs. While this may be seen as a deterrent to some people living with addiction, there are still plenty of good reasons that heading into a reputable drug and alcohol rehabilitation program will be beneficial to you, and to the people in your community. How successful any one person’s rehab experience will be depends heavily on the individual, though programs that are patient-focused and heavy on personalized attention tend to have better recovery rates, and are ostensibly the model for the best types of specialized therapy programs.

It is understandable that the bare fact that people who have been to rehab aren’t always successful might discourage the best of us from attempting to heal from addiction to drugs and alcohol. The process can be long, and difficult for some, particularly those living with addiction to highly addictive drugs, like opiates and alcohol. It isn’t unusual for a person to cycle in and out of rehab while trying to free themselves from their illness. To combat this, some facilities are offering more thorough and comprehensive follow-up, and other options for support continue to improve, and continue to offer the kind of support that can save lives.  More education about the importance of sticking to rehab until you’ve fully healed is a necessary step, but it is something that will come with a much slower revolution in the rehab industry.

Knowing the global success of rehab is a little harder: while we know, for sure, that there are indeed many rehab facilities all over the world, we can only rely on the reported rates from a few countries. For better or worse, rehab elsewhere in the world doesn’t necessarily match the quality in fully-developed countries, so it is difficult to ascertain the truth in the numbers from some countries. Other countries don’t have rehab opportunities at all, and that will obviously impact their effectiveness on drug and alcohol recovery rates. Many countries, if not most, employ hospitals for rehab programs, with every reputable program having a staff of experienced doctors and nurses with different specialties. In the best rehab environment, the entire staff is invested in the recovery and well-being of the patient, but this isn’t always the case, even in the countries where rehab is typically good.

Rehab Entrance Rates

rehab to avoid relapseOver one million people are admitted to drug and alcohol treatment programs every year. Remember that roughly 40% of people who enter rehab programs are able to stay sober for an extended period of time; this number doesn’t account for people who maintain sobriety for an extended period of time, but relapse much further down the line. This isn’t unusual: recovery from drugs and alcohol is a lifelong process that requires total commitment from the recovering person.


There is an interesting note that may bring some hope: people living with addiction often enter periods of remission. The remission rate for people living with addiction to drugs and alcohol ranges from 50% to 80%, meaning that really, most people that fit this criteria are likely to experience a period of remission. A short-term study of individuals who’ve successfully completed rehab showed that abstinence occured in up to fifty percent of newly-released patients. How long until a relapse occurred varies wildly, but a high likelihood of people living with very potent addiction relapsing remains.

In the short term, up to fifty percent of people who complete their treatment tend to relapse in the first couple of weeks, but nearly seventy percent will return to their dangerous habits. This might not sound very hopeful, but remember that periods of remission are a likely occurrence, and this could be a great window to stage an intervention. Choosing a period of remission could also assist a person who’s completed therapy in the past. It could be the second, or third, or fourth round of treatment that enables a person to finally kick the habit.

There’s always hope for anyone who is genuinely interested in freeing themselves from the hold of drugs and alcohol.

Aftercare and Relapse

It is never recommended to end a residential treatment program early, and never seek support again. Lack of support is one of the many reasons that many people who complete their treatment programs relapse. Even with your best efforts, you will inevitably find yourself in a situation where you are tempted. Strengthening yourself against these moments is part of continued therapy, or aftercare. When you leave any residential treatment program, you have several options for additional support, including any members of your original network from before you struggled with addiction. Even more effective after you’ve completed a treatment program is outpatient residential treatment. In outpatient care, the likelihood of relapse drops substantially: outpatient treatment programs offer much of the same attention and assistance that you received while living at a treatment facility. Not to mention the economic toll of the opiod crisis is extremely high, according to one of the best treatment centers in Arizona, Arizona Recovery Rehab. Read here:

You’re Not Alone

Relapse doesn’t make you a failure, contrary to mainstream beliefs about rehab. Relapse is a common occurrence among people recovering from addiction to drugs and alcohol, and every treatment center understands this. Without persistence in treatment and continuing treatment, the situation will only worsen for someone who is vulnerable to addiction; fortunately, compassionate people working in reputable rehab facilities will be there to assist.

Talk to Someone Who’s Been There. Talk to Someone Who Can Help. Scottsdale Recovery Center holds the highest accreditation (Joint Commission) and is Arizona’s premier rehab facility since 2009. Call 602-346-9142.