Menu Close

What Is an Aftercare Program?

people talk in a group during an addiction aftercare program

Aftercare programs are a valuable part of a comprehensive drug or alcohol treatment plan. Despite its importance, many recovery patients don’t think about or fully understand aftercare. Planning for aftercare when you’ve just started treatment may be overwhelming, but it is necessary to achieve long-term success in recovery. For information about a supportive Omaha addiction aftercare program, call Northpoint Omaha at 888.687.8014.

What Is an Addiction Aftercare Program?

Whether you have completed an inpatient, residential, or outpatient rehab program, your treatment isn’t truly complete without a relapse prevention program in place. Aftercare programs help you develop a relapse prevention plan to continue recovering.

Nearly half of those who receive treatment for substance use disorder experience at least one relapse. Relapsing doesn’t mean you have failed, and it doesn’t mean the end of your recovery. With the proper support, relapses can be managed and provide a learning opportunity.

However, depending on your addiction, relapses can also be fatal. People who have opioid or severe alcohol use disorders are at exceptionally high risk for fatal overdose if they relapse. Aftercare programs are an effective resource for preventing relapse.

Your aftercare specialists will help you make plans for staying sober once treatment is over. An aftercare program will address your living situation, future employment, long-term relapse prevention, continued therapy, and more.

What Happens in Aftercare?

Every person’s recovery journey is different, and so are their concerns about what happens once treatment is over. However, some common reasons patients choose to participate in an aftercare program include the following:

  • Finding a sponsor
  • Transitioning to a lower level of care, such as an intensive outpatient program
  • Participating in individual or group therapy
  • Finding and attending support meetings, such as 12-step meetings
  • Establishing a support network
  • Participating in an aftercare alumni program for ongoing support

Rehab treatment is challenging, but life after rehab can be even more difficult. Revisiting places and people that trigger a desire to use drugs or alcohol or dealing with life’s day-to-day stressors can make you vulnerable to relapse.

Learning how to navigate a sober life without the constant support of a recovery team is where the real work begins. Participating in an aftercare program gives you a better chance of preventing relapse.

Preventing Relapse with an Aftercare Program

You learn new methods of coping and add many new skills during recovery. Treatment provides an opportunity to practice those skills, but it is in a carefully controlled environment with professionals offering support at every turn.

Aftercare is one more chance to practice before life takes the safety net of a treatment program away. The main objectives of aftercare are:

  • Reinforcing the coping skills that help prevent relapse
  • Helping patients identify their triggers and make plans for handling them
  • Teaching how to make healthy choices in every avenue of life

Aftercare programs provide much-needed connections to support sources. Whether you continue with group counseling, private therapy, an alumni group, or a 12-step program, aftercare helps you build a strong sober network you can lean on for the rest of your life.

Find a Relapse Prevention Program at Northpoint Omaha

The aftercare program at Northpoint Omaha provides the extra support and resources you need to maintain long-term sobriety. Patients continue to work with therapists, peers, and other team members they have already come to know and trust.

We recommend aftercare for every patient, especially those who have relapsed at least once previously or are at high risk for a fatal relapse overdose. Call us today at 888.687.8014 if you or someone you know needs the continued support of our comprehensive aftercare program. Our specialists are also available to answer your questions through our convenient online form.