Prescription Drug Detox Aftercare

There is a misconception that the detoxification process can serve as the main means of treatment. In reality, it is usually the first step in addiction treatment, regardless of what the addictive substance is. This remains the same with prescription drug detox and there are many things that can happen after the process is completed. When you call 800-996-6135(Who Answers?) to learn about your treatment options, keep in mind what happens in prescription drug detox aftercare.

Addressing Other Conditions

Prescription drug addiction is unique in that the drug usage usually begins as a means of treating another condition. When seeking treatment for the addiction, the original condition will often need to be addressed as well.

These instances, SAMHSA says, are referred to as co-occurring disorders or dual diagnosis and about 8 million patients in the U.S. were reported as having one in 2014. In order for treatment of the addiction to be successful, the co-occurring condition needs to be treated as well.

After prescription drug detox, an assessment of the person’s addiction and their co-occurring condition(s) will be done to determine the next step in treatment. This may mean a full reassessment of the condition and more or different medication to treat it.

Therapy and Counseling

Drug Detox Aftercare

Taking part in counseling sessions after drug detox can prevent relapse.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, behavioral counseling and therapy are usually what follow the detoxification process. The same thing happens after prescription drug detox, and can be done using a multitude of methods.

Individual and group therapy are common and will be typically paired with one another in order to give the patient the best of both options. Occasionally, family may be invited to therapy or may even have their own sessions to help them understand their role in treatment and their feelings about the situation.

Counseling is usually done to help address the causes of the addiction, essentially trying to figure out how the person stopped using their prescription as intended and why. The main purpose of this is to prevent it from happening again further on and to establish what can be done in the event of a relapse.

Many patients will often use therapy sessions to deal with their own feelings about their addiction and help them relearn how to function without the assistance of the drug.

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Further Assessment

Throughout the treatment process following prescription drug detox, assessments will be conducted in order to gauge a person’s progress towards recovery. This can include monitoring:

  • Any damage cause by the addiction
  • The effects of co-occurring conditions
  • Continuing withdrawal symptoms
  • The patient’s mental status
  • The risk of relapse

Treatment is often customized to the person and assessment serves a purpose in checking for flaws in the treatment, addressing any need for changes in order to give the patient the best chance of recovery. It can also help determine whether a person has completed the treatment process and what they may need to do during recovery to stay sober.

If you or a loved one is struggling with an addiction, please call 800-996-6135(Who Answers?) for help. You will be able to speak with one of our caring specialists about what treatment options are available for you.


  1. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2016). Co-Occurring Disorders.
  2. National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2018). Treatment Approaches for Drug Addiction.
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