There are several models of drug rehab that offer greater positive outcomes and long-term sobriety success than the ubiquitous 12-step and various “addiction-is-a-disease” types of drug rehab programs which dominate the drug rehab landscape.
Alternative programs do not require a lifetime of Narcotics Anonymous (NA) or Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) meetings. Instead they are based on the belief that addiction is more than just treatable, it is fully curable.
Because of the vast numbers of traditional programs, compared to the relatively few non-12-step and non-disease-theory drug rehab programs in existence, the latter have become known as “alternative” drug rehab programs.


Don’t confuse the term “alternative” drug rehab with use of the word to describe activities on the periphery, or even outside of, science.

In fact, just the opposite is the case.

Traditional drug and alcohol treatments (as much as 97%) utilize various methods — a 12-step / faith-based philosophy, or the addiction-as-disease philosophy, that puts your sobriety in the hands of others — God, the medical profession, groups of other addicts — and all clinging to the belief that an addict cannot ever fully recover.

Where traditional faith-based, 12-step programs have miserable long-term success statistics — around 5% — so-called alternative programs can be at least 50% successful and often much higher.

Such success can only be due to pure, repeatable and predictable workability — the very definition of scientific.



The top-rated, most popular alternative drug rehab programs:

  • Don’t trap individuals with the emotional blackmail that they are life-long addicts
  • Are well established and have many decades of successful results
  • Are very well thought of among addiction researchers and academics
  • Have long-term sobriety success rates far above traditional models.


In 2003, a University of New Mexico study rated 48 treatment models by comparing effectiveness of a method with either no treatment or with other therapies.

Most effective methods were only “brief intervention”, and included:

  • Self-control training
  • Social-skills training
  • Community reinforcement
  • Motivational enhancement.


Least effective were the most widely used treatment models in the country:

  • Confrontational interventions
  • Educational lectures and films
  • General counseling
  • Psychotherapy and other milieu therapies


By way of comparison to “alternative” programs, traditional 12-step programs such as Alcoholics Anonymous were ranked 38th among the 48 treatment methods reviewed.



The often complex and difficult situations that arise in life can fully yield to an analysis of one’s own life and actions. Armed with this new understanding, people suffering from addiction are able to replace the addiction life-style with an entirely new set of life skills. Learning the skills, and using them, must take place on a firm base of persistence and dedication to succeed, newly-acquired self-confidence and personal responsibility.

NOTE: Drug rehab always comes after drug detox. Choose the right kind of drug detox program to help make sure that you, or the person you are helping, has the most successful drug rehab .