What Is a Typical Day in Drug Rehab Like?

Seeking help for substance abuse can feel difficult, but making that choice is the best thing you can do for your future. After choosing recovery, you will have some decisions to make about how and where to have treatment. It’s helpful to learn about the different options available in order to make an informed choice.

Addiction treatment programs vary but all quality drug and alcohol rehab centers can offer you specialized sessions tailored to your specific needs. They are all likely to follow a general structure and offer a similar framework of therapy options.

This blog article outlines a typical day in rehab for treatment for alcohol or drug abuse.

Inpatient Treatment

Inpatient Treatment

Recovering from substance use disorders is an extremely challenging process and most people will benefit from an inpatient program. The safety and security of inpatient drug rehab will enable you to focus on your substance use without the triggers and stressors of everyday life.

For many people, entering inpatient rehab is a frightening prospect because they don’t know what to expect. This can be overwhelming. Having some idea of what a typical day in rehab is like can help you prepare for starting treatment. Although every center is unique and will offer treatment and therapies related to its specialisms, there are some similar structures and routines which you can find across drug rehab programs.

Mornings: Start the Day Healthily

Mornings: Start the Day Healthily

Most rehab programs will begin the day early and kick start with a healthy breakfast. Good nutrition is a key element to achieving a positive mind and body. You can expect to find breakfasts with less emphasis on caffeine and sugary foods than you might see in an average household.

Some addiction treatment programs will incorporate a mindful activity in the morning such as meditation, yoga, journaling, or gentle exercise. This helps you to start each day with a calm mind and creates a sense of rhythm and structure for your time in drug or alcohol rehab. Developing healthy routines like this during rehab means you are more likely to carry them through to life after treatment.

After the morning routine, you are likely to take part in a group session related to your stage in the process. This could be an educational workshop on the nature of addiction or a session looking at how to prevent relapse. Group sessions are a way for you to connect with other people going through their own recovery journey. Building a community is one of the most effective ways of staying on track.

In these daily group sessions, you are likely to work on understanding addiction. You will look at the underlying causes, triggers, and emotions behind your substance use disorder. Working through these topics in a group enables you to learn from others.

Lunch break

Lunch Break

Rehab for substance abuse can be an intensive process. There is so much to learn and understand about yourself and your history. Additionally, the physical and emotional toll of withdrawal can be tiring. For this reason, all residential treatment programs will build in substantial breaks and spaces for reflection. Lunch break is a time for you to refuel physically and emotionally before afternoon therapy.

Afternoons: Therapy Sessions

Most treatment centers offer a range of therapy modalities, and you will likely be encouraged to take part in a combination of treatments.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

Cognitive behavioral therapy is one of the most widely recognized treatments for alcohol and drug abuse. This method of treatment focuses on understanding your thought processes, how these impact your emotions, and ultimately how they affect your behavior. Through CBT you will learn to recognize negative thought patterns, challenge them, and create healthier coping strategies which serve you and your well-being.

A cognitive behavioral therapist will help you to establish tools and techniques for managing stress and dealing with triggers, long after rehab has finished. This form of individual behavioral therapy is often the most effective addiction treatment available.

Group Therapy

Most residential treatment programs will offer group therapy sessions during your stay. Group therapy can form a fundamental aspect of treatment for drug addiction. Group therapy usually involves one or two trained therapists leading a group of four to five people through supported group discussions, interpersonal process groups, or experiential therapies.

Group therapy sessions offer a secure and compassionate environment for members to process trauma and mental health difficulties. Through group sessions, members can work together to establish healthy strategies for the future and build connections with others who are going through their own addiction recovery journeys.

Other therapy options

Many addiction treatment programs will incorporate sessions that draw upon the expertise and specialisms of their staff. What is on offer will vary depending on the facility. For example, some may focus on grief counseling for individuals whose substance use is related to grief.

Many people living with substance abuse problems have experienced significant amounts of trauma, either leading to or as a consequence of their addiction. Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) is a therapy that is increasingly being used for the treatment of mental health conditions.

EMDR sees clients working with a therapist to identify a specific traumatic memory while focusing on repeated movement and sound. This process is found to decrease anxiety and increases people’s understanding of their trauma. This can enable people to process difficult emotions and memories in a safe, secure environment, allowing them to move forwards in their recovery process.

Many programs are tailored towards a specific group of people, which can help make the care extremely specialized and appropriate. For example, this could include people with a co-occurring mental illness or moms-to-be. Attending a rehab program like this can instill a strong sense of connection and compassion between members which is an extremely effective way to achieve long-term sobriety.

It’s important that you look for a substance abuse treatment program that has experience in treating your specific condition.

Family Therapy

Afternoons may also be a time for family therapy or sessions. Involving the family can have a significant impact on a person’s recovery for a number of reasons. Addiction impacts everyone around the person; this can result in relationship breakdown, anger, codependency, enabling behaviors, or estrangement.

Family therapy sessions can be a time to approach these difficult topics in a secure setting, ensuring everyone has their feelings heard and acknowledged. A trained therapist will guide the individual and their family members through the process, ensuring everybody’s safety and well-being throughout.

In addition to therapy, some treatment centers will invite family members to join sessions such as education workshops, or weekend activities. This helps everyone go on their own journey of understanding addiction, improving compassionate communication, and giving a better knowledge of how to manage addictive behaviors.

This can be a powerful event in which the family becomes more aware of addiction and the ways to help their loved one feel supported early in the recovery process.

Time to Relax in Residential Rehab

In alcohol and drug rehab you will typically expect to have some free time in the afternoon to relax and enjoy. You will be able to choose how to spend this time, but there are also often activities offered to you.

Spending time doing enjoyable activities is a great way to improve mental well-being, and inspire people to keep going with recovery. Healing is a challenging process; it’s important to incorporate some fun and relaxation into this time.

Evenings in Residential Rehab

After a healthy dinner, some addiction treatment centers will offer an additional evening session. This is commonly a 12-step meeting which is a great opportunity to make connections in a supportive and understanding community, which you can maintain long after alcohol or drug rehab is over.

Some rehab centers will host their own 12-step meetings, while others will transport you safely to offsite Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or Narcotics Anonymous (NA) support groups. These community groups offer a respectful and anonymous space in which supportive relationships can be formed — an integral element in long-term sobriety and recovery from alcohol or drug abuse.

A typical day in rehab will finish with a reasonable bedtime. It’s important residents feel a sense of autonomy and choice, but sleep is a crucial aspect of recovery so it’s very much encouraged to get at least eight hours in bed. After such a full and stimulating day, most people want to sleep early in order to be ready for the next day of healing and learning.

Outpatient Rehab

Some people may choose to recover in an outpatient treatment setting for their drug or alcohol rehab. If you are considering treatment and you are not sure what your options are, get in touch with a mental health professional to talk through what is available at treatment centers.

Outpatient rehab is suitable for some people, especially if they have a particularly supportive home environment. This form of treatment sees them attending sessions at the treatment facility throughout the day, but returning home at night to sleep.

Outpatient treatment will typically include many of the components described above, but there will be less leisure time as it’s important to cover the addiction treatment in a shorter space of time. Depending on the person’s unique circumstances, and the specific treatment center, the number of hours spent at the clinic will vary. Some people will attend sessions two to three times a week, while others will attend every day.

If you are considering recovering at an outpatient treatment center, seek advice from professional mental health services. The staff there will be able to help you understand what to expect in terms of treatment sessions.

Begin Recovery at Drug and Alcohol Rehab

At whatever point you may be in your recovery process, you should realize that you are not alone. Substance abuse is a widespread problem in the United States. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) 59.3 million people engaged in illicit drug use in 2020 and 17.7 million were heavy drinkers.

Many of these people don’t receive the help they need, but by entering rehab you will. You will also meet others who have been in your situation or have specialist knowledge of the support you require.

Recovery at NP Addiction Clinic

At NP Addiction Clinic, we know the challenges of alcohol and drug addiction. Accessing treatment can feel like a scary step, but we are confident it’s the best decision you could make. At our addiction treatment facility in Port Saint Lucie, Florida, we specialize in helping people recover from a range of substance use disorders and mental health conditions.

Our team of experts uses evidence-based medical treatments in a compassionate and understanding manner. We believe that every person has the right to a drug-free future, and we want to make this possible for you.

Every treatment process for addiction begins with medically assisted detox to ensure a safe and comfortable substance withdrawal. This ensures your body and mind are drug-free before beginning the psychological aspects of recovery.

Addiction is a complex condition, and at our rehab center we are committed to treating every person in a holistic manner. We use a range of therapeutic approaches, including psychotherapy techniques such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Motivational Interviewing, and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR). We also offer equine therapy and art therapy.

If you are ready to face your addiction, get in touch with us today at NP Addiction Clinic. Our rehab facility offers the highest quality treatment in a comfortable, secure environment, setting you up for long-term recovery and a happy, healthy life.

Begin the first day of the rest of your life

To find out more contact our team


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Samantha Kelly​

Director of National Business Development & Admissions Coordinator

I am a dedicated and passionate professional with extensive experience in business development Admissions and marketing. I have an incredible passion for showing others that there is a light at the end of this dark tunnel if someone truly wants it.
Being in recovery myself I understand the struggles of addiction and alcoholism. I Started this Career path in 2009. With multiple years of experience, I bring a multi-faceted approach and am always seeking new ways to make a difference in the lives of those I work with.

Kim L. Buckner


As a Substance Abuse Motivational Speaker, Pastor, Peer Advocate, and Facilitator. Kim helps clients avoid relapse by understanding their triggers. Those people, places and things that can cause craving, as well as internal triggers like feelings, thoughts, or emotions. Kim also clients with identifying and building healthy relationships now that they’re clean and sober.

Kim’s background includes extensive experience as a motivational speaker and work in faith-based organizations helping youth and adults alike. He says he is motivated by giving back to the community, understanding, and not judging who she comes into contact with. Kim’s favorite quote is by Dr. Raymond Johnson: “The respect given to others rebounds to the giver to deny the scared in the Other is to deny it in oneself.”

Caty Burns


Caty graduated from Indiana University Bloomington in 2015 with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and minors in Counseling and History. Throughout her undergrad, she worked at the local CASA program, supporting volunteers advocating for children who had experienced abuse and neglect. Caty worked for seven years at a community mental health center (CMHC), partnering with children, adults, and families.

During those seven years, she taught life and coping skills as well as behavior management, provided case management and peer recovery services, and facilitated treatment teams that included the client, family, providers, and community members. I have also worked at an IOP providing group therapy services. She is currently working towards my Master of Social Work.

In her free time, Caty enjoys reading, especially historical fiction, spending time outdoors and having movie nights with her family. Disney World is her happy place, and she dreams of living among the elephants.

Madison Knowles

Mental Health Therapist

My name is Madison Knowles, I am a Mental health therapist at NPAC. I am a single-mother of two and I have a daughter who is globally delayed and has been diagnosed with autism. I have been in this industry since I was 16 years old, as I was fascinated with human behavior. I obtained my masters in applied behavioral analysis and started off working with people with disabilities. I then found my love for counseling when I worked with juveniles who had mental health and substance use issues. I then decided to go back for my mental health therapy license after that and working in a forensic treatment center. I went on to obtain my therapy credentials and since 2017, I have also been working on my PhD in forensic psychology in which I am currently working on my dissertation. I am inspired by change and how resilient people can be. My favorite inspirational quote is “Some will, Some won’t, So what, NEXT!!!” This quote has inspired me to try, try, and try again no matter how hard life gets, someone will give you a chance eventually. As a therapist at NPAC, I have been given the opportunity to work with diverse populations such as in substance use and mental health and I am known for my work with people on the schizophrenic spectrum as well as with other clients with other severe conditions including personality disorders.

Megan Carmona, LMHC

Lead Therapist

Our Lead Therapist, Megan, is a bilingual Licensed Mental Health Counselor who specializes in working with adults who struggle with addiction, anxiety, depression, and trauma. As Lead Therapist, she provides individual, family, and group therapy sessions to our clients.  Megan says “I am very passionate about therapy, especially about supporting my clients in exploring their strengths and identity. My goal is to provide individuals with the tools that can help them achieve independence in coping with their challenges and facilitating personal development.” In her free time, Megan enjoys watching docu-series and playing video games with her family. Her dream is to own acres of land so she can care for vulnerable animals, especially old dogs, cats, and horses. 

Kristen Bensley

Primary Clinician

As Primary Clinician, Kristen works with all aspects of our clinical team, from case management to primary therapy.  She has broad experience working in the mental health field. Prior to joining our team at the Neuro Psychiatric Addiction Clinic, Kristen was part of the team awarded the Evernorth Behavioral Health Center of Excellence Designation by Cigna. She says her motivation is to help people rediscover who they are and become excited about the future and all the possibilities life offers. Kristen’s favorite quote is: “You can’t go back and change the beginning, but you can start where you are and change the ending.”

Ronn Daigle, MSW

Therapist, Utilization Review Clinician

Ronn Daigle services as a Therapist and Utilization Review Clinician at the Neuro Psychiatric Addiction Clinic. He has been working in the field of substance use disorder treatment since 2011, with experience in all facility-based levels of care. Ronn earned, both an Associate of Arts in Psychology (2013) and Bachelor of Science in Human Services, with an Addiction Studies Concentration (2015) from Indian River State College. 

Ronn additionally earned a Master of Social Work degree in 2021 and is a current Registered Clinical Social Work Intern working toward licensure (LCSW). He describes himself as detail oriented, and solution focused.

Ronn says: “There is nothing more fulfilling than working with someone who doesn’t believe in himself or herself, and being there in the moment with them when the belief begins. We work with individuals who come to us at a point and time in their respective lives where they do not believe that change for others is possible; let alone for themselves…throughout the process they eventually come to a point where they realize that change is not only possible, but achievable.”

Erika Melecio, LMHC, MCAP, CEI

Assistant Clinical Director

Erika Melecio, LMHC, MCAP, CEI is the Assistant Clinical Director at Neuropsychiatric Addiction Clinic who specializes in the treatment of LGBTQ, addiction, as well as mental health disorders ranging from depression and anxiety, to Bipolar Disorder, trauma, personality disorders, psychotic disorders, and eating disorders. Erika utilizes a number of modalities including Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Solution Focused Therapy, Motivational Interviewing, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, and Mindfulness amongst others. Erika has been in practice for close to a decade and has earned her license in Mental Health Counseling, as well as being a Master’s Certified Addiction Professional. Erika has worked with many individuals including couples counseling and family therapy, and is fluent in Spanish.
Throughout my years of practice, one of the things I enjoy helping people find is inner peace. Whether you are in the deepest parts of depression, overrun by your anxiety, controlled by your addiction, or there are certain issues in your life that are negatively impacting your ability to function, and have a happy, healthy life, maybe now is the time to talk about it. I am a big believer in empowerment, working hard in therapy, and utilizing different techniques to help you regain that inner peace that may have been lost along the way. I want to work with you as a team because with two people, absolutely everything is possible. I want to be there as a therapist, to help build you up, support you, but also help you be honest with yourself and accountable. At the end of the day, when all is said and done, my biggest goal for you is going to be simple….for you to no longer need my services. Why? Because if you no longer need my services, it means that you have regained your peace, you have regained your strength, you have regained your confidence. It means that you now have the tools to address any issues that try to derail you, and best of all, you will have the insight to overcome and thrive. So let’s begin this journey together, and get you to the place you want to be, emotionally, mentally, psychologically, and in your sobriety.

Aurelio Ayuso, MSW, LCSW, CAP, ICADC

Clinical Director

Aurelio has worked with those that suffer from the disease of addiction in adults and juveniles alike for over 10 years, beginning in the United States Navy where he proudly served for 20 years, working with those that were succumbed by addiction due to trauma and continuing his passion for helping those in need locally in Central Florida.

He specializes in both Addictions and Trauma, he has worked first as a therapist then as the clinical supervisor to both the Juvenile and Adult Drug Court programs in Brevard County. Aurelio has been instrumental in developing substance abuse treatment programs directly tailored to help those that also suffer from complex trauma due to their addiction. He has been recognized by several organizations for his forward thinking and ability to tailor treatment to individuals in the most restrictive environments.

Mr. Ayuso received his Graduate Degree in Clinical Social Work from the University of Central Florida in Orlando. He is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker as well as Certified Addictions Professional in the State of Florida, and Internationally Certified Alcohol & Drug Counselor. Aurelio specializes in the treatment of Addiction, Trauma, and Abandonment using strength based strategies deeply rooted in Solution Focused, and Mindfulness Therapies. At the Neuropsychiatric Addiction Clinic he passionately develops holistic curriculums that foster the belief that through addressing the mind, body, and spirit together, the Disease of Addiction can be addressed successfully.

Robert Lehmann, MHSA

Chief Operating Officer

Bob Lehmann is the Chief Operating Officer at the Neuro Psychiatric Addiction Clinic. He has a Master’s Degree in Human Services Administration with a concentration in Mental Health Administration and over twenty-five years of experience as a senior executive at addiction and mental health treatment facilities.

One of the reasons for his commitment to excellence in addiction treatment was his experience related to family members who suffered from the disease of addiction. Bob has been actively involved in community organizations throughout his career. Recently he was one of the founders of the Florida Addiction Treatment Coalition (FATC) and is its present Vice President. FATC was designed to bring together treatment executives in Florida to advocate on behalf of treatment facilities and the clients they serve adhering to a foundation of integrity and service excellence.

Jose R. Toledo, M.D.

Medical Director

A well-rounded and accomplished individual, Jose R. Toledo, M.D., is the Medical Director of Neuro Psychiatric Addiction Clinic.

Dr. Toledo is a neurologist with 25 years of experience and has been in private practice since 1991 on the Treasure Coast of Florida. He completed his neurology training at the State University of New York and his Fellowship training at the University of Pittsburgh in Epilepsy and Clinical Neurophysiology.

He also completed 24 months of acute inpatient psychiatry at the Western Missouri Mental Health Center, University of Missouri in Kansas City. In 2008, Dr. Toledo participated in and was certified in the continuing medical education activity entitled “Buprenorphine and Office-Based Treatment of Opioid Dependence” from The Medical University of South Carolina during which began his quest to found and head Neuropsychiatric Addiction Clinic.

Dr. Toledo is a brain specialist with particular competence in addiction medicine and out-patient detoxification treatment and integrates the fields seamlessly. He is certified to prescribe Buprenorphine (Suboxone). He incorporates his background in neurology into the addiction field. Dr. Toledo is member/fellow of The American Medical Association, The Florida Medical Association and The American Society of Addiction Medicine