Addiction Treatment Guide

Alcohol, like other drugs, can be abused. Some people are able to drink a little bit and stop, while others will drink to black out status every night. There are people that become addicted to alcohol like any other drug and will need treatment either of their own free will or because they have been ordered to seek this treatment by the court.

The Types of Treatment

There are several types of alcohol treatment. Which is right for you will depend on your situation and your needs. These include:

  • Outpatient treatment: This is where you come to a facility for counseling sessions and appointments. You may only be there for an hour or two, and then you go home.


  • Inpatient treatment: This may be in a lockdown facility (if it is court ordered) or in a residential facility where you will be asked to spend your time. Lengths of stays can vary from one week to six weeks and in some cases, even longer.
  • Residential treatment centers: Like inpatient facilities, you will be asked to live at this center but sometimes will be allowed to seek work or go to appointments away from the facility. Some people are asked to step down into one of these after leaving the inpatient treatment centers.

Your Treatment Team

You are a valued and important member of your own treatment team. There will be others that are also working on helping you get well. These people include:

  • A psychologist or a psychiatrist that will help you understand why you became addicted to alcohol and what behaviors you will need to modify as part of your treatment.
  • A counselor (or several counselors) that will guide you through your counseling sessions.
  • Social workers or case managers. If you are living in a treatment center, these professionals will help you to successfully transfer back out into the general public once again. They may help you find housing or employment or assist you with other concerns that might impact your progress. If you were court ordered into treatment, you may have a case manager that will act as a liaison between you and the court.

The Treatment Itself

There is no one-size-fits-all treatment approach for alcohol addiction. Everyone is different, so their treatment plan will be different. However, there are plenty of options that are available. These include:

  • Group therapy. In group therapy, you will share your experiences with others that will listen and give you honest and real world advice.
  • Individual therapy. In this treatment, you will work on the issues that motivate you to drink as well as look for better behavioral responses to those issues.
  • Family or couple’s therapy. Most people that become addicted to alcohol or drugs do not realize how much it impacts their family and other relationships. This type of counseling can help to mend the problems in the family and may also address some of the enabling behaviors that have allowed the problem to get this far in the first place.
  • 12-step programs. Most people follow up their treatment with the 12-step programs so that they can remain accountable to their own recovery.