Drug & Alcohol Rehab in Germany

Addiction is a term that is often misunderstood.

Regardless of whether this is due to misinformation or misunderstanding, addiction is a disease that can affect any walk of life.

Defined as a continuous cycle of behaviour in which an individual seeks out a substance or action,  addiction is a disorder which presents itself differently in every individual case.

When someone is addicted to a substance – such as alcohol – their brain may begin to undergo changes.

This can influence their behaviour, emotions and physical wellbeing depending on the substance.

Woman exhausted

Often, these changes include alterations to the neural pathways in the brain – especially to those associated with addictive behaviours such as seeking out more of the substance.

With addictions to alcohol, these changes can also include the production of vital hormones and chemicals such as serotonin, without which an individual may struggle to go about their day-to-day life or engage in everyday activities.

What Is Rehabilitation?


Before entering alcohol rehab in Germany, it is important to understand the meaning behind this form of treatment, as well as the variations and overall aim of this process.

Rehabilitation is the general process of recovering from something.

With addiction, rehabilitation is about moving away from substance use, treating the effects of addiction, and maintaining this in the long term.

Generally, alcohol rehab in Germany will follow the abstinence approach to recovery – referring to stopping usage of a specific substance or substances completely.

Support groups

This is proven to be the most effective aim of rehab, as individuals move away from substance use and therefore the negative consequences that are associated with this.

Individuals will focus on the root cause of their addiction, helping to move away from substance usage in the long-term and maintain this throughout the individual’s life.

This is far more effective as other goals of rehab such as harm reduction and moderation management, as they focus solely on the negative consequences of addiction rather than the origin or cause.

What Are Interventions And How Can They Be Used Before Further Rehabilitation?

Group Therapy

For some individuals, before entering rehabilitative treatments, it may be useful to be part of an intervention.

This may be useful as it allows the individuals struggling with addiction to share their experience of addiction with those closest to them who may be affected such as friends and family members.

With the help of an interventionist, these friends and family can also share their experiences and learn more about their loved ones’ addiction, enabling them to make more useful or suitable suggestions for the future of their rehabilitation.

Family in field

This is the overall aim of an intervention – to encourage those struggling to seek out future support and treatments.

The standard and more traditional form of intervention has a success rate of around 30% in this area, though more modern approaches such as the Community Reinforcement And Family Training (CRAFT) approach increases this to around 75%.

How Much Does Rehab Cost In Germany?

Cost of rehab

Like the cost or rehab in the UK, it is difficult to predict the overall cost of alcohol rehab in Germany.

This is mainly due to the multiple individual differences that each individual case has.

For example, different individuals have different histories of addiction, have been addicted for differing lengths of time, and experience wildly different withdrawal symptoms during detox.


This means that estimating the services, treatments and therapies that they will need is incredibly hard.

However, there is a lot of information available across the internet.

Though slightly different, the UK government website states that aside from health insurance, the cost of a day in hospital or the cost of prescriptions in Germany is around 10 euros (at the time of writing).

Rehabilitation is completely different from services accessed through general hospitals, however, so further research should be conducted if the individual is interested in learning more about or entering alcohol rehab in Germany.

Is Drug And Alcohol Rehab Available Through The NHS?

Men talking

In the UK, some rehabilitative treatments are available through the NHS, though these are often limited.

Accessing various therapies and counselling services through the NHS is far more common than entering residential rehab, for example, due to the costs associated with each of these treatments.

However, the NHS is not accessible in Germany, meaning that these services are not available for those living there.

This is not to say that there are not alternatives.

Recovery Groups

Alcohol addictions are known to be of growing concern in Germany, resulting in an increase in the number of rehabilitative services available across the country.

This includes various counselling service providers, residential rehab centres, and specialised addiction programmes which can be accessed through local services or found online through various websites and organisations.

How Long Does Rehab Last?

How long rehab

As mentioned previously, each individual’s personal differences will make their rehabilitative care uniquely specialised to their needs.

This means that factors such as duration of treatment are often difficult to predict.

One of the main reasons for this is the detoxification process.

Each individual progresses through this stage at different paces depending on their personal history, physical health and the type of substance they are addicted to.

How long does rehab last

With an alcohol addiction, detoxification can take anywhere between 7 to 14 days or more, with some symptoms lasting up to a year after withdrawing.

Rehab 4 Alcoholism generally suggests a stay in a residential centre of 28 days.

This is the amount of time allocated for individuals to enter the centre, undergo the detoxification process, and follow this up with further rehabilitation and aftercare services.

Holding hands

Please bear in mind that it is possible to extend or reduce the amount of time spent in alcohol rehab in Germany, based on the individual’s engagement, motivation and success.

There is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to rehabilitative care, meaning that every individual’s needs are different and will be considered as such.

Comparing Council-Funded Treatments To Private Residential Rehab

Doctor consultation

There are may differences in the type of care received from either council funded services (such as the NHS in the UK) and private residential care.

The main differences refer to the ease in accessibility of care.

Where council funded services are often easily signed-up for, they may not be the easiest to actually begin treatment through.

This is due to the fact that these services attract a large majority of individuals seeking rehabilitation.

Long wait

With long waiting lists, accessing local council-based services can take an extended period of time.

On the other hand, private residential care can be accessed immediately for those who need it most.

After just one initial telephone assessment, individuals are able to enter a dedicated residential centre if it is needed.

When it comes to addiction, the speed of treatment is one of the most crucial factors relating to success of rehab.

This is because addiction can quickly worsen over time if not picked up on or treated, making the overall process of rehab even longer in some cases.

The Differences Between Inpatient And Outpatient Care

Living room

One of the first decisions that individuals can make at the beginning of their rehab journey is the choice between inpatient and outpatient care for alcohol rehab in Germany.

The main differences between the two are listed below:

  • Inpatient care – This is rehabilitation partaken in within a residential centre. As part of the individual’s everyday routine and life in the centre, they will take part in a range of specialised and tailored addiction treatment programmes, focussed on finding and treating the root cause of their addiction. Though recommended to most individuals struggling with addiction, this is more suitable for those with a longer history or more extreme withdrawal symptoms.
  • Outpatient care – This is rehabilitation partaken in outside of a residential centre. Referring to counselling sessions, addiction support groups, or various addiction support workshops, this type of care is not as full-time as residential care and may be far less regular. Generally, this type of rehab is more suitable for those with a shorter history of addiction, those who experience less severe withdrawal process, symptoms and those for whom residential care is not suitable.

Alcohol Detoxification And Rehabilitation In Germany

Symptoms of addiction

Alcohol addictions are fast becoming an issue in Germany.

Like the UK, Germany is known for a strong drinking culture, popular for festivals such as Oktoberfest, beer gardens, and brewing.

However, alcohol is one of the most dangerous substances that is easily available and widespread across the world.

This is because alcohol is a physically addictive drug, meaning that individuals become physically dependent on it.

Severe Addiction

As mentioned in the introduction, alcohol can affect areas in the brain such as serotonin – something that is vital for wellbeing and health in the long-term.

With regular usage, alcohol can lead to disorders such as alcoholics seizures, Delirium tremens and Wernicke’s encephalopathy.

When it comes to an alcohol detox, it may be suitable to involve the administration of drugs such as Librium to ease the harmful negative effects that alcohol withdrawal can have on the body.

From this, Rehab 4 Alcoholism suggests following a detox with further rehabilitative treatments – namely therapy and other counselling-based treatments – to counteract the negative mental health effects that often co-occur within those with a long-term alcohol addiction.

Cocaine Addiction And Rehabilitation In Germany


Cocaine is one of the most addictive substances available in the world.

Due to its effect of the individual’s mood, perception and behaviour, it is also one of the most dangerous.

Usually consumed via snorting, cocaine can have serious impacts on the health of the individual’s lungs, heart and nose tissue.

However, cocaine is not physically addictive.


Once the individual has slowly transitioned away from cocaine usage (supervision is always recommended), they are then encouraged to undergo further rehabilitative treatment to tackle the strong psychological impact that long-term cocaine usage can have.

While at rehab the individual may also be treated for the effects of any other substances they have consumed, as cocaine is known to have a strong influence on the consumption of other drugs simultaneously such as alcohol.

Heroin Addiction And Rehabilitation In Germany


As potentially the most addictive substance in the world, rehab in Germany also provides support for those struggling with an addiction to heroin.

Though it is generally considered to be an issue in countries such as America, Germany’s problem with heroin addictions is not to be taken lightly.

Heroin causes strong euphoric highs that require increasing quantities of the substance to gain the same strong effect each time.

This often leads to an increase in severity of the method of consumption – from snorting and smoking to injecting.


These consumption methods each come with their own issues, as well as the general consequences of heroin itself such as an increased risk of liver disease, heart complications, seizures and blood clots.

During detoxification, it is important for individuals to slowly progress from heroin to a heroin substitute (e.g., methadone or buprenorphine) to avoid the dangers of this physically addictive drug.

Also known for its strong impact on the individual’s psychological wellbeing, it is therefore always recommended to continue with rehabilitation after detoxification.

This includes partaking in various therapies and treatments designed to combat the effects that a long-term heroin addiction can have on an individual’s mental health.

Cannabis Addictions And Rehabilitation In Germany


Cannabis is another common drug consumed in Germany. It is also the most commonly consumed illegal drug across England, highlighting its prevalence in the modern world.

Known for its variety of effects on the individual’s introspection, appetite, libido and risk of panic attacks, cannabis is a highly addictive substance, not to be discounted due to its lack of class A drug status.

There is no official ‘cannabis detox’ but withdrawing from the drug slowly is extremely important before engaging in further treatments.

By withdrawing before beginning rehabilitation, individuals are far more likely to make a successful recovery.

Types Of Therapy Individuals May Experience At Rehab


Rehabilitative treatment through alcohol rehab in Germany is different for every individual that experiences it.

Differences in history of addiction, substance addicted to, and the success of their detoxification will all contribute to the individual’s experience of rehab.

However, there are some therapies that are more likely to be encountered due to their success in treating addiction.

Group with notes

A list of the most common therapies used in alcohol rehab in Germany follows below:

Dual Diagnosis: What Is It And Why Is It Important?


It is often speculated that addiction presents itself in individuals as a result of underlying mental health issues.

This may include disorders such as anxiety and depression, as well as other disorders such as bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.

When an individual is diagnosed with addiction officially, it is therefore also likely that they will be diagnosed with additional mental health issues.

This is known as the dual diagnosis approach and, though not always guaranteed to be the case, is the best way to focus on all elements of an addiction during alcohol rehab in Germany.

Addiction brain

Through Rehab 4 Alcoholism, all suggestions for rehab are made with this approach at their core, and those who seek rehab outside of our referral service should ensure that their chosen rehab service provider also follows this approach.

This can be discussed before beginning treatment or entering a residential centre in Germany.

How Rehabilitation Can Help Individuals Prepare A Relapse Prevention Plan

Man with pen

Relapse prevention planning is a vital part of an individual’s recovery.

Though not every individual who undergoes rehabilitation is guaranteed to relapse, having a plan in place is a great way to understand more about the process of recovery, as well as being part of the individual’s personal development.

Individuals creating a relapse prevention plan are encouraged to take their time over this process, understanding that it will be gradual and may need to be altered depending on a variety of different situations.

Information that should be included as part of this plan include:

  • Triggers
  • Cravings
  • Contact information for trusted support e.g., addiction support officer, addiction support network, close friend, or family member.

Recovery will not happen overnight, so having a plan in place to deal with situations where it may be disrupted is of upmost importance.

Aftercare And Additional Support Received After Rehab

Support Group

Individuals leaving alcohol rehab in Germany may experience a variety of different emotions and/or effects after their treatment, but they will never be left alone to deal with their addiction.

Even after leaving a centre or rehab service provider, aftercare services will be available to help in every situation where they may be needed.

Most often, this will include contact with an addiction support officer.

Support network

Regular meetings and check-ups will help the individual feel supported as they continue with their long-term recovery.

Additionally, it is common for individuals leaving rehab to be enrolled into an addiction support network such as Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous.

Though they may be under slightly different names in Germany, these services are still highly beneficial to those who are leaving rehab and require additional support as they navigate life after rehab.

Getting Help Today

Person with phone

If you or a loved one are considering alcohol rehab in Germany or would like to enquire about any further queries relating to addiction, rehabilitation, and general recovery, please do not hesitate to contact us today.

Rehab 4 Alcoholism’s dedicated addiction support line is here to help demystify the rehab process and give you the best advice for treatment.

Addiction is a debilitating disease, but with our expertise and your intrinsic motivation, we can overcome it together.

Featured Drug and Alcohol Rehabs in Drug & Alcohol Rehab in Germany

There are various types of rehab centres available in Drug & Alcohol Rehab in Germany, including inpatient alcohol rehab, luxury alcohol rehab, and private drug rehabs.

Inpatient Rehab


Medical Detox