Getting sober without rehab

There is no one size fits all when it comes to addiction recovery. Some important steps when tackling an addiction is understanding what addiction is and how it works as well as strategies to change. Addiction treatment services provide insight into addiction behaviours, and provide knowledge and skills to help overcome them.

So, is getting sober without rehab possible? Yes, and no. Let’s start with the no. Rehabilitation means to restore something that has been damaged. No matter what approach is taken to overcome addiction, there needs to be some rehabilitation at play.

However, if by rehab you are solely referring to an inpatient rehab program, there are plenty of alternative treatment options available to support you in your recovery journey. Addiction treatment without attending an inpatient rehab program is possible.

There are many reasons for not wanting to join an inpatient program. These may include:

  • Feeling anxious about the rehab experience
  • Negative past experiences with inpatient rehab
  • Conflicting schedules or time restraints
  • Fear of what others might think
  • Denial
  • Financial

While the above may deter you from entering an inpatient rehab program, it is important to remember you don’t have to go through recovery alone. Here are some alternative supports for getting sober without rehab.

Detox & Withdrawal

When you are looking to make drastic changes to your life and routine it is a good idea to check in and discuss this with your GP. They will be able to advise you on the safest ways to approach these changes. Detox and withdrawal is an important part of the recovery process and is often the first step in getting sober. Depending on the addiction and substances that you’re needing to clear out of your system, quitting cold turkey on your own may be dangerous. Some of the more severe withdrawal symptoms can include seizures and heart problems.

A detox & withdrawal program provides a safe space where you are surrounded by professional medical care 24/7. Relying on support purely from loved ones during this time can also be extremely stressful. Having professional staff on hand to support you through this can help to ease some of these stresses.

Outpatient Program

If committing to an inpatient rehab program is not a viable option, then an outpatient program might be for you. This is a program where you remain living in your home and attend day program sessions a few times a week. The program includes a range of educational workshops and counselling sessions where you will be supported by a qualified, experienced and professional team. Benefits of these programs include access to After Care and assistance with creating a relapse prevention plan.


Unpacking and understanding your addiction is vital to your recovery. Counselling is a powerful tool for you to use during this time. These sessions can help with understanding your substance use, identifying triggers, and provide you with healthy strategies and ways to overcome past behaviours. Counselling is a supportive, individualised, safe space for you to open up and really explore what’s been going on for you.

Peer Support Programs

Hearing the experiences of other people who have been through something similar to you can be powerful and helpful for your recovery. Noticing similarities as you hear other people share about their journey can help reduce feelings of shame and isolation. By connecting with a peer support program you will start to build a support network, learn from people who have walked the same path and also become someone who supports others too. Examples of some peer support programs include Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA).

Finding the right support.

Recovery isn’t easy, but having a strong support network behind you sure makes a difference. If you would like to discuss your addiction treatment support options with us, call 03 9533 7888 or get in touch via our contact form.