After an intensive period of treatment, particularly inpatient treatment, any further intervention that helps maintain sobriety is known as aftercare. For some, returning to normal circumstances with a relapse prevention program in place is appropriate, while others prefer to spend a period of time in a sober living community before returning home.

Relapse Prevention Programs

A relapse prevention program is usually a combination of methods—often participation in a mutual help group alongside stress reduction techniques and lifestyle changes. By planning to prevent relapse and remaining vigilant for the possibility of one, transitioning to a sober life can be a deliberate choice with a greater chance of success.

Sober Living Communities

For some people, it is helpful to spend time in a community of peers in a sober living community after intensive treatment. This transitional period of supportive care can help reinforce new habits developed during treatment, and deepen the commitment to sobriety as a new way of life.

Sober living communities offer:

  • An environment free from drugs or alcohol
  • Peer support from other members of the community, often including house meetings or other group support activities
  • An affordable place to live for those who are seeking employment after treatment
  • House curfews, chores, house meetings, and contribution of rent or jobs in the community to create a sense of participation and responsibility

Sober communities are intended as a bridge between residential treatment and regular life; they are less structured than inpatient care but provide a sense of safety to those who still feel new to sobriety and need support before facing the pressures of normal life.

People who have just completed an intensive period of treatment and need support before resuming their normal living circumstances.

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