Should I Live in Sober Housing While I Am in Outpatient Rehab?

If you are engaging in outpatient drug and alcohol rehabilitation, good for you. You are making a wise and brave decision. If you are considering outpatient rehab, you are also making positive steps in changing your relationship with drugs and alcohol.

But, you might want to make these changes, but feel unable to because you don’t have a supportive environment. What do you do when outpatient rehab is all that is available to you but your family, friends, roommates and others encourage substance abuse or discourage rehab? You might feel unable to make changes.

One solution to this challenge is sober housing. For patient with limited incomes and access to treatment, outpatient rehab may be the only option. But, outpatient rehab is completely undermined by dysfunctional living environments. Studies show a social and living environment that encourages abstinence from drugs leads to better treatment outcomes.

Sober housing can provide a safe, drug-free space for people while they pursue rehab. Plus, sober housing serves as more than a residence. It is also a support system and socializing with peers in recovery reinforces your own motivation to get clean and remain that way.

If you are interested in sober housing as an accompaniment to rehab, can help to answer your questions and to connect you with housing. Give us a call at 800-953-3913 (Who Answers?) for more information.

Sober Living Houses

Outpatient Rehab

Living in a sober environment has been shown to improve treatment outcomes.

As implied by the name, sober houses are residences where drugs and alcohol are strictly forbidden. They are living situations offered specifically to people who are trying to establish or maintain their sobriety.

It should be noted that sober living houses do not provide any structured treatment. They do, however, encourage or require active participation in support groups, like 12 step programs.


The primary benefit of sober housing is that it provides a supportive, drug-free environment. But, another benefit is that residents are free to stay as long as they like.

In addition, sober housing is typically funded by fees paid by the residents themselves. Often, sober houses are inexpensive enough to be covered by government aid in the form of general assistance or social security. People with full-time jobs or access to money through other avenues may find more luxurious accommodations more in keeping with their requirements and there are more expensive sober housing situations.

Sober housing typically runs according to a socialized model where a residents council or elected residents are instrumental in making decisions about the housing. There are also some residences that have a primary leader, who establishes and enforces all rules. When you seek sober housing, consider which model will work better for you.

How is Sober Living Different from a Drug Treatment Program?


There are a number of scientific papers dedicated to the outcomes of sober living houses, but it hasn’t been until recently that their effect on outpatient treatment was examined. In a 2009 study, the results indicated residents of sober housing who were also engaged in outpatient treatment made significant improvements in multiple areas.

Compared to a baseline, residents at six months showed decreases in the number of months they used substances and in the number of arrests. For residents who relapsed, the use was less severe and they were able to reestablish abstinence quickly. 67 percent of the people used in the study had not used any drugs or alcohol over the six months the study extended.

By combining sober housing with outpatient treatment, you will be able to experience some of the intensive support found in inpatient treatment at a much lower price. Additionally, the combination of outpatient treatment and sober housing allows you to continue activities like school or work that you may not be able to take a break from during treatment. These benefits are extremely beneficial in resource poor communities that lack the funds to establish inpatient treatment centers.

If sober housing sounds like the perfect addition to your treatment plan, you owe it to yourself to contact the experts at Call 800-953-3913 (Who Answers?).

Where do calls go?

Calls to numbers on a specific treatment center listing will be routed to that treatment center. Calls to any general helpline will be answered or returned by one of the treatment providers listed, each of which is a paid advertiser: ARK Behavioral Health, Recovery Helpline, Alli Addiction Services.

By calling the helpline you agree to the terms of use. We do not receive any commission or fee that is dependent upon which treatment provider a caller chooses. There is no obligation to enter treatment.

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