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Easy Guide on How Sober Living Homes Work in 2021

November 14, 2022

Whether you have just entered treatment, are thinking about entering treatment or are well into addition recovery, you may be wondering what transitioning back into daily life will be like. This is an important concern, since very step to gain independence from drug and alcohol addiction requires careful planning and consideration.

One the best ways to transition back into independent living are sober living homes. In this article we will be discussing sober living homes. How they work, and how their programs can benefit you.

How Deep are Drug Abuse Problems in the US?

Historically, the United States has experienced epidemics in drug use that have defined decades such as the crack and powered cocaine epidemic of the 1980’s or America’s first epidemic, the rise of amphetamines in the 1930’s. No drug epidemic, however, has been quite so devastating as the opioid crisis we are facing now.

Important Statistics on Drug Abuse

  • In 2019, approximately 10.1 million people aged 12 or older misused opioids that year.
  • There have been 700,000 drug abuse overdose deaths in the Us since the year 2000.
  • 100,00 people have died of drug overdose from April 2020 to April 2021; mostly due to opioid use.
  • 19.4% percent of individuals over 12 have used illegal drugs or abused their prescriptions.
  • 14.8 million people have alcohol use disorder (AUD).
  • A 2021 survey of 10.9 million existing users revealed that most increased their usage slightly or significantly as a result of the pandemic.

What are Sober Living Homes?

Beginning your recovery journey and getting to a point of independence after years of substance abuse and addiction requires careful planning and commitment. Before people can start a rehabilitation of any kind, they must undergo a process of cleansing the body called detoxification.

Upon completion of detox, it is strongly recommended that care be continued sequentially by entering a residential inpatient program. Those grappling with severe symptoms of drug dependency, also called substance use disorder (SUD), enter rehabilitation and gain the support and skills necessary to sober lives.

But not all of those who complete residential inpatient treatment have the tools necessary to return to their lives right away. The goal of sober a living program is to help ease the transition back into everyday life by offering housing that integrates with addiction treatment.

How Do Sober Living Homes Work?

Compared to life in a residential program. sober living homes provide a lot more freedom to their clients. However, there are still many expectations and rules to adhere to such as:

  1. Those in sober living homes are required to pay a monthly rent. While these rates can be higher than that of an apartment, these costs also go toward groceries and other household expenses.
  2. During the “reintroduction phase” of a sober living program, patients are expected to attend work or school.
  3. Individuals are responsible for running errands, chores doing chores and regularly engaging in counseling and house meetings.
  4. Leaving the premises at will is allowed, but there are still limitations. For example, you may be required to check yourself out or notify staff where you are going. You must also adhere to the curfew.
  5. Those in treatment must submit to random drug testing and in some cases location monitoring.

Different Sober Living Programs

Transitional Housing – Is a catch-all term used to describe all kinds of sober living housing programs such as halfway houses and recovery houses.

Halfway Houses – The term halfway house and sober living house is often used interchangeably, but more accurately, halfway house is a term used to describe a type of government-operated transitional housing for convicts, those required to enter treatment to satisfy a court order or individuals who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless.

Recovery Houses – Unlike halfway houses, recovery houses are privately owned and require their residents to pay rent. Recovery houses also differ in allowing their clients either the freedom to live at home a couple days week or the ability to leave facility when so desired.

Short Term vs Long Term Sober Living Facilities

Don’t let the term “transitional” fool you. Compared to inpatient detox and residential programs, transitional housing programs tend to be on the longer end of the addiction treatment spectrum. In fact, a survey done by the Journal of Psychoactive drugs revealed that the average stay in a sober living facility was between 166 and 254 days.

The main reason for this is stability. At this stage of recovery, the risk of relapse threatens to derail any critical progress made. Studies show that rates of relapse decrease the longer a person stays sober. For this reason, many patients opt to stay longer so that they can continue to develop relapse management skills, form good habits and reestablish themselves in society by finding stable work, and social support systems before returning home for good.

Cost of Sober Living Programs

Interested in finding a sober living program ear you but need to budget for costs? Rent at sober living homes in the United States can vary greatly, especially from state to state and even from one area to another.

Unlike residential inpatient programs, which bundle their services into one hefty monthly bill, the cost of a sober living program largely revolves around rent which is usually based on the mortgage of the property. It can also be based on other things too such as:

  • The number others sharing a residence with you
  • Whether you are staying in a house or an apartment
  • If there are premium services or amenities being offered
  • If you are living in a state run or private facility
  • Whether or not your insurance provider is covering a portion of the costs

If you or a loved one is seeking information on addiction or mental health resources please call (888) 564-4780.

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