Aftercare – What to do after Rehab

Here at UKAT, we understand that those who have completed a programme of care in one of our facilities may be reluctant or hesitant when it comes to leaving; this is completely natural. After spending many weeks with access to support and care from fully qualified and caring staff, it is understandable that clients may be feeling apprehensive about their ability to cope with the ‘real’ world. For that reason, we will provide up to twelve months of free aftercare for clients, which will hopefully make the transition easier.

We know that many clients find it difficult to return to normal living and they need the added support of their counsellor or therapist to help them learn how to adapt to sober living. Before clients leave our facilities, they will be provided with a full assessment of their requirements and a personalised care plan will be put in place. This may include regular meetings with a counsellor or therapist and will usually include recommendations for attendance at 12-step fellowship meetings.

The risk of relapse is generally highest during the first 60 days following completion of a residential programme, however any risk will be minimised by the attendance at Aftercare, self help groups and following a discharge plan. Many people feel confident and motivated after discharge from treatment but dealing with all the normal day to day issues and problems can erode this confidence. This is the time where seeking support is extremely important. A return to normality can be a challenging process and if progress is not maintained, motivation will be compromised.

Those who attend regular aftercare sessions are more likely to maintain and increase their coping strategies and enable the individual to put into practice more readily, all the changes and learning that were acquired in treatment.

A reconnection with therapists and support staff and the support of a peer group, who may all, in one form or another have experience of similar difficulties (and may have found their own solutions) are a positive and dynamic method of support for each other.

Together with self help groups including AA, NA, CA and SMART, returning for aftercare groups at your residential rehab is fundamental to maintaining not only sobriety but a rewarding and fulfilling life, free from the desire to return to old negative behaviour patterns and the slide back into addiction. As each milestone is passed successfully so will the desire and the motivation to maintain recovery increase.

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