Alcohol & Health
Helping Alcoholics
Where Does My Call Go?
Updated on June 16, 2022
6 min read

Weekend Rehab

What is Weekend Rehab?

Addiction treatment for alcohol and drug use comes in different forms. Some centers offer inpatient and outpatient treatment. Others provide virtual treatment, support groups, and more.

Finding the right treatment is essential to have the best chance of recovery. 

Outpatient rehab is one type of treatment for addiction. It varies in intensity based on the types of services available.

Outpatient rehab doesn’t include food or accommodation, so it typically costs less than inpatient treatment.

Some outpatient rehab programs are comparable to inpatient treatment in regards to services and effectiveness. Others may be low-intensity.

For those looking for flexibility, some facilities offer outpatient treatment on weekends. This type of rehab may work well for people who have less availability for treatment during the week. Not all facilities offer weekend rehab, though, so be sure to check. 


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What is Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD)?

Alcohol use disorder (AUD) can be mild, moderate, or severe. It depends on the number of symptoms you experience.

Signs and symptoms of AUD may include:1

  • Being unable to reduce how much alcohol you consume 
  • Wanting to reduce how much you drink but being unsuccessful in doing so
  • Spending a lot of time drinking, seeking alcohol, or recovering from drinking 
  • Experiencing intense cravings or urges to drink 
  • Failing to fulfill important obligations at work, school, or home due to alcohol use
  • Continuing to drink even though it's causing physical, social, and/or personal issues 
  • Giving up or reducing social and work activities and hobbies 
  • Drinking alcohol in situations where it's not safe, like while driving or swimming
  • Developing an alcohol tolerance that results in needing more to feel its effect
  • Experiencing withdrawal symptoms, like nausea, sweating, and/or shaking, when you don’t drink

What Happens During Weekend Rehab?

Weekend rehab programs vary, just like any rehab program.

Most weekend rehab programs involve:

  • Educational sessions on addiction topics and coping strategies
  • Learning coping strategies and relapse prevention
  • Learning about the neurological impact of alcohol 
  • Developing and improving relationship skills
  • Practicing effective communication
  • Individual and group therapy
  • Identifying, avoiding, and dealing with triggers

Therapy sessions during weekend rehab help people examine the root of their addiction. Therapists help people develop coping strategies for their substance use triggers. 

These sessions also allow people to join a community where they feel supported and can share common experiences with others.

Therapy also helps people work on understanding their addiction. They can find ways to avoid or deal with triggers and manage their addiction as they reach sobriety.

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Is Weekend Rehab Effective?

Weekend rehab can be as effective as other programs.

Going to treatment on the weekend may help people who commonly drink on weekends.

People in outpatient treatment have the option to attend both weekend and night programs for more intensive treatment. This provides them with more days and hours of education, therapy, and support.

Various rehab programs may be more effective than others for certain situations. People must work with their doctors and support staff to select the right treatment plan for the greatest chance at recovery.

There is also no single treatment approach that’s right for everyone. With the variety of treatments available, it’s essential to choose one that most effectively matches individual needs. 

While weekend rehab may be suitable for some, it isn’t always the best option. 

Weekend sessions usually include the same programs and therapies as those of weekday outpatient programs. Accountability and evidence-based education are two examples.

Additionally, those participating in outpatient treatment can process what they’ve learned outside of treatment. They will begin to integrate it into their home lives.

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Who Should Attend Weekend Rehab?

In severe addiction cases, weekend rehab may have limited resources. Therefore, it’s less effective in treating alcohol addiction than more intensive options. 

Comprehensive care is often required to maintain sobriety and support recovery. However, many people struggle with alcohol addiction and can’t enter a longer rehab program because of other responsibilities.

Weekend rehab can accommodate many types of people, including:

  • Working professionals
  • Executives
  • Pregnant women
  • Working single mothers
  • Older adults

Outpatient rehab includes various programs. Treatment may be intensive at first, with multiple sessions occurring each week.

Once participants complete intensive treatment, they may transition to regular outpatient treatment. There, they’ll attend fewer sessions for shorter amounts of time. This could involve weekend rehab.

Less-intensive treatments like weekend rehab makes it easier for people to attend sessions. They can also continue with other responsibilities like work or school.

Who Needs More Intensive Treatment? 

If you’re looking for more intensive treatment, inpatient rehab may be a better option. 

Inpatient or residential treatment can be beneficial for people who have:

  • More severe addiction problems
  • Relapsed
  • Co-occurring disorders

This type of treatment offers around-the-clock care. People remain at the center for the duration of treatment. It typically involves medical detox, individual therapy, group therapy, and behavioral therapies. 

Programs typically last around 30 to 90 days. The length of time varies based on needs. In some cases, treatment only lasts a few days or weeks. 

Other Treatment Options 

Recovery from addiction is a long-term process. It may require several treatment efforts. You should explore different treatment programs to find one that meets your needs.

There are various options throughout the U.S. that offer inpatient and outpatient treatment, including weekend rehab.

Here are some types of alcohol addiction treatment:2

Outpatient Treatment

These programs offer behavioral therapies like cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). CBT helps people recognize, avoid, and cope with situations in which they’re most likely to drink.

Most of the programs also include medical detox and individual or group counseling.

Outpatient treatment often includes family therapy, too. Family therapy helps youths with drug abuse problems and their families. 

Family therapy addresses a range of influences on people’s drinking patterns. It’s designed to improve family functioning. Therapists typically use motivational interviewing, which uses motivational incentives to encourage alcohol abstinence.

Inpatient Treatment

Inpatient or residential treatment can also be very effective. It’s mainly for those with more severe addiction problems, including those with co-occurring disorders

Licensed residential treatment centers offer 24/7 structured and intensive care. This includes safe housing and around-the-clock medical attention.

Residential treatment centers may also use a variety of therapies. The goal is to help people live an alcohol-free, crime-free lifestyle with the help of medical treatment.

Some examples of residential treatment settings include:

Therapeutic Communities

These are highly structured programs. People live in a residence for around 6 to 12 months. The whole community acts as key agents of change. They influence the person’s understanding, attitudes, and behaviors linked to alcohol use.

Short-Term Residential Treatment

This typically focuses on detox. It also provides initial intensive counseling and preparation for further treatment in a community-based setting.

Recovery Housing

This type of rehab provides supervised, short-term housing. It often follows other types of inpatient or residential treatment. Recovery housing helps people transition into an independent life post-addiction. 

Finance management and finding employment are key factors here. It also connects them to additional community support services.

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Updated on June 16, 2022
6 sources cited
Updated on June 16, 2022
All Alcoholrehabhelp content is medically reviewed or fact checked to ensure as much factual accuracy as possible.

We have strict sourcing guidelines and only link to reputable media sites, academic research institutions and, whenever possible, medically peer reviewed studies.
  1. Alcohol use disorder, Mayo Clinic, July 2018
  2. NIDA. "Treatment Approaches for Drug Addiction DrugFacts." National Institute on Drug Abuse, 17 Jan. 2019
  3. Scrivener, Katharine et al. “After-hours or weekend rehabilitation improves outcomes and increases physical activity but does not affect length of stay: a systematic review.” Journal of physiotherapy vol. 61,2 : 61-7
  4. Center for Substance Abuse Treatment. A Guide to Substance Abuse Services for Primary Care Clinicians. Rockville (MD): Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (US); 1997. (Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) Series, No. 24.) Chapter 5—Specialized Substance Abuse Treatment Programs
  5. Inanlou, Mehrnoosh et al. “Addiction Recovery: A Systematized Review.” Iranian journal of psychiatry vol. 15,2 : 172-181
  6. Laudet, Alexandre B et al. “Pathways to long-term recovery: a preliminary investigation.” Journal of psychoactive drugs vol. 34,3 : 305-11

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All content created by Alcohol Rehab Help is sourced from current scientific research and fact-checked by an addiction counseling expert. However, the information provided by Alcohol Rehab Help is not a substitute for professional treatment advice.

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