Rehab for Teens: Why Aftercare Is Essential
Did you know that alcohol is the most commonly used substance among young people in the United States? More than 29% of high school students drink alcohol and some teens begin earlier than that.
Although underage drinking doesn't always lead to addiction, it's very possible for teens to develop a substance abuse disorder.
If this happens, rehab for teens is a necessary step to recovery, but the journey doesn't stop there. Keep reading to learn why aftercare is essential.
What Is Aftercare?
Rehab for teens is the first step in getting rid of an alcohol abuse problem, but aftercare is necessary for continuing the sobriety journey. Aftercare refers to a plan to support someone in the early recovery stages to prevent relapse.
An aftercare plan typically includes interventions, activities, and resources for recovering teens to cope with stress, cravings, triggers, and forms of temptation.
Each person will have a different aftercare plan depending on their unique situation. Here is an example plan to get an idea of what aftercare entails:
- Staying in a sober living home
- Attending recovery meetings
- Reaching out to a sponsor or members of a sober support system
- Attending group and individual counseling sessions
The transition out of treatment is difficult for many which is why an aftercare plan is essential.
Creating an Aftercare Plan
When treatment comes to an end, teens will likely meet with counselors, therapists, or case managers that can help curate a plan.
These professionals will help you consider your particular situation. For example, continued outpatient treatment is a common option for teens.
By understanding the needs of the teen, a therapist can help them find resources in the community or online to address certain areas of a treatment plan.
The length of the aftercare plan will be based on the needs of the teen. Some people continue aftercare for weeks, months, and even years. Programs will recommend that a teen stays engaged in follow-up aftercare for at least a year.
It's important to modify an aftercare plan if the needs of a teen change over time.
Supporting Teens Through Aftercare
Addiction aftercare for teens is much easier with a support system at home. Aftercare programs can help, but it's also important for the teen to stay in a sober living environment.
Family and friends are a vital component in the recovery process and aftercare. There are many ways family can help provide support, such as:
- Educating themselves about addiction and recovery
- Celebrating successes
- Encouraging healthy behaviors and habits
- Keeping drugs and alcohol away
- Attending therapy
- Learning the signs of relapse
While family and friends might not always see certain milestones as a success, it's important to notice the recovering teen to give them the motivation to continue their sobriety journey.
Rehab for Teens: Aftercare Explained
Rehab for teens is a great first step to beating addiction, but it is not the only step to recovery. Aftercare is essential ongoing care after the teen leaves rehab that helps with anticipating future challenges of sobriety.
Support from the AA community is one of the most common forms of aftercare. Reach out to us today to learn more about the community and the use of AA chips.