What Is Rehab Like?

Entering rehab for the first time is often a daunting and uncertain journey, filled with hope, apprehension, and the desire for change. The courageous step towards rehab signifies a commitment to self-discovery, healing, and reclaiming control over your life. The purpose of a professional rehab center like Tennessee Valley Recovery (TVR) is to help those struggling with drug and alcohol addiction find recovery and achieve long-term sobriety. 

Although there are different types of rehab, there are typical guidelines that most centers use for those in recovery from drugs and alcohol. It’s normal to ask, “What is it like in rehab? Or, what happens in rehab?” Taking the initiative to educate yourself on what to expect in rehab helps prepare you for the life-changing journey to recovery. 

A woman asks "What is rehab like?” during an individual treatment session.

What is Rehab Like For Alcoholics?

Alcohol addiction is a mental health disorder covering chronic and compulsive use of alcohol despite adverse consequences. 

Therefore, alcohol rehab is a structured program designed to help individuals struggling with addiction overcome their dependency on substances and rebuild their lives. 

This therapeutic process typically involves a combination of medically supervised detoxification to manage withdrawal symptoms safely. 

Additionally, there’s individual and group counseling to address the underlying psychological factors of addiction and various forms of therapy such as cognitive-behavioral therapy, family therapy, and holistic approaches. 

Common signs of alcohol addiction include:

  • Drinking excessively, no control
  • Increased tolerance of alcohol
  • Unsuccessfully trying to cut back or stop drinking
  • Neglecting responsibility to drink 
  • Engaging in risky behaviors as a result of drinking 
  • Continued drinking despite adverse consequences
  • Withdrawal symptoms when not drinking

Using and abusing alcohol long-term can result in severe impacts on health and overall well-being. Liver damage and damage to the nervous system can be the result of long-term abuse of alcohol. 

What rehab is like can vary from place to place but generally includes using combinations of medication and therapies to teach new coping skills to prevent the use of alcohol. 

Alcohol rehab programs also focus on well-being, relapse prevention, and life skills training.

A woman discovers: What is rehab like? during a group recovery session.

What is Drug Rehab Like? 

Drug addiction is a mental health condition describing chronic drug use and continued use despite negative consequences. 

What is rehab like if you’re addicted to drugs? The significant difference between drug and alcohol rehab is often the focus on the challenges and treatments of each substance. The differences lie in the various detox methods and behavioral therapies tailored to specific needs.

Some of the most commonly abused drugs are: 

  • Cocaine
  • Methaampehtimeine
  • Gamma-hydroxybutyrate (GHB)
  • Hallicnognes
  • Opioids
  • Inhalants
  • Marijuana
  • Adderal (Cannabis)
  • Prescription drugs such as Xanax

The inability to stop using, despite dire consequences, often leads to further changes and impacts in the lives of those struggling with these substances. There can be impacts on physical and mental well-being as well as social, economic, legal, and financial well-being. 

Long-term use of these harmful and toxic substances can lead to changes in the reward and pleasure pathways in the brain. It’s challenging to fight off cravings, resulting in compulsively seeking and using drugs to appease the mental obsession and physical compulsion associated with using drugs. 

The NIDA  reports that only 13 percent of those who battle drug addiction get help. The number is a grim statistic as the effects of drug addiction on the life of an individual often lead to long-term repercussions, even death. These can include cognitive impairments, organ damage, impaired judgment, poor decision-making skills, job loss and chronic unemployment, legal issues, and loss of friendships and family relationships.

A New Day Begins with Tennessee Valley Recovery

Visit the admissions page at Tennessee Valley Recovery today to learn more about our treatment plans.

Rehab and Dual-Diagnosis

What is rehab like for those facing dual-diagnosis —simultaneous struggles with addiction and mental health conditions? For example, an individual might abuse substances as a way to cope with their mental disorder. Substance abuse may aggravate the symptoms of a person’s mental health disorder, putting them in an unhealthy cycle that is difficult to break. 

If you’re wondering what to expect in rehab, it’s likely a combination of therapy, medication management, support groups, and educational sessions. In this case, rehab offers a holistic approach to healing. In rehab, they receive personalized treatment plans tailored to address both aspects of their condition. 

Through compassionate care and understanding, rehab provides a safe space for individuals to explore the underlying causes of their addiction and mental health challenges while learning essential coping skills for long-term recovery. 

With dedicated support from trained professionals, those with dual diagnosis can embark on a transformative journey towards healing, stability, and renewed hope.

A man who wondered “What is Rehab like?” enjoys a group session.

What to Bring to Rehab

If you or a loved one have decided to enter rehab,  it’s important to pack thoughtfully. Essential items include comfortable clothing suitable for various activities, personal hygiene products, prescription medications (in original containers), identification documents, a list of emergency contacts, and any necessary medical information. 

It’s also advisable to bring a journal or notebook for reflection and a few comfort items such as photos or mementos from home. 

However, you should check with the rehab facility beforehand for specific guidelines or restrictions on what items are permitted. Ultimately, packing light and focusing on necessities will help streamline the transition into treatment.

A man enjoys the admissions process while finding out "What is rehab like?"

Levels of Care to Expect in Rehab

If you’re wondering what happens in rehab for yourself or putting a loved one into rehab, you should expect certain levels of care.  

TVR offers diverse programs catering to those seeking drug rehab. Their approach combines personalized care with a broad spectrum of treatment modalities to address drug and alcohol addiction effectively. 

These programs cater to different recovery stages, incorporating holistic therapies, support groups, and educational workshops:

Medical Detox

One of the first steps in overcoming addiction involves safely removing substances from the body under close medical supervision. Our medical detox program provides a secure and comfortable setting where clients receive round-the-clock care to manage withdrawal symptoms effectively.

Residential Treatment

Following detox, clients may transition into our residential treatment program, where they reside onsite for an immersive recovery experience. This program focuses on intensive therapy and counseling, lifestyle adjustments, and coping strategies, ensuring a solid foundation for long-term recovery.

Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP)

For those who have commitments that prevent a full-time residential stay or are transitioning from inpatient care, our IOP offers flexibility without compromising the quality of treatment. Clients receive high-level care and support while maintaining connections with their daily lives.

Outpatient Treatment

Outpatient treatment is ideal for individuals seeking continued support as they reintegrate into their communities. It includes regular therapy sessions and access to our resources, allowing clients to solidify their recovery in real life.

Sober Living

We understand that transitioning back to everyday life poses challenges. Our sober living options serve as a bridge between structured treatment and independent living, offering a supportive environment where clients can practice sobriety with peer support.

Each program integrates holistic therapies, support groups, and educational workshops, all aimed at addressing the underlying issues of addiction and promoting overall wellness. 

You’ll gain invaluable tools and strategies for managing stress, triggers, and cravings, ensuring a resilient foundation for a substance-free life.


After completing treatment, individuals can typically expect comprehensive aftercare support designed to facilitate their transition back into everyday life while maintaining sobriety. Aftercare programs normally include continued therapy sessions, support group meetings, and regular check-ins with counselors to provide ongoing guidance and encouragement. 

A couple finds answers to their question of: What is rehab like?

Discover What Rehab is Like Today

Your path to freedom from addiction begins with one courageous step: seeking help. Ultimately, you choose a better life for yourself and your loved ones by choosing recovery. Tennessee Valley Recovery casts a wide net to those seeking long-term recovery from substance abuse and mental health conditions. Recovery is not “one-size-fits-all”. We’ll meet you wherever you are on the road to recovery; you will never walk alone. Discover what rehab is like at Tennessee Valley Recovery. Our professional team will guide you through what happens in rehab. 

Reach out today.

A New Day Begins with Tennessee Valley Recovery

It is time to put your health and wellbeing first. Call us right now to learn more about how we can help you put a stop to your active addiction and begin living a life of recovery.

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