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Residential treatment is the gold standard in care for substance abuse and addiction. The round-the-clock support and consistent access to a wide range of intensive therapies offer the best way to build a strong foundation in sobriety. Benefits include:
There are a number of treatment philosophies, structures of care, locations, and foci, and each treatment program will offer a unique combination to potential clients. The benefit is that you can explore your options, choose which one best suits your needs, and get comprehensive care that will best support you in your journey toward stability in recovery.
The best way to determine which one is best for you is to ask questions:
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About Residential CareThe Need for Detox
A residential treatment facility should be structured to support the growth and healing of the individual. This means that each client’s experience in treatment should be varied according to need. However, every treatment program will be guided by a general schedule. For example, group meal times occur at the same time each day. There is a block of time set aside for showers, shared chores, and group meetings. In most cases, lights-out and wakeup times are standard for everyone, and personal time is built into the schedule as well as time for clients to branch off and take part in individual therapy sessions.
Additionally, time is set aside on some evenings and/or weekends for family visitation, celebratory events, visiting speakers, and trips into the community.
In some circumstances, accommodation may be made for family emergencies or other personal commitments that arise unexpectedly. In later stages of treatment, it may be an option to volunteer, attend 12-Step meetings in the community, work, or take classes. These activities may be worked into a client’s schedule if the individual is ready.
In the first couple weeks of rehab, clients are encouraged to focus solely on recovery. This often means avoiding contact with friends and family outside of the facility via any means, including letters and phone calls. The idea is that it takes time to transition from the mindset of active addiction to that of active sobriety. It is an easier process when one is not distracted by the worries of loved ones or any issues happening at home. Additionally, the first weeks of treatment are often defined by intense physical and mental withdrawal symptoms. It can be easier to navigate this experience by fully committing to the process of recovery.
After the first few weeks, however, regular communication and interactions with family members are not only provided for but encouraged. The support of family can be a critical part of recovery, and the more informed that family members are about the nature of treatment and recovery, the more effective they will be in positively supporting their loved one when they transition back home. Regular communication during the rehab period is an essential part of that process and may include family visitation days, family therapy sessions, regular phone calls or emails, and more.
Comprehensive care requires intensive therapy that addresses the many different issues that can arise during early sobriety and make it more difficult to avoid relapse. The number of different types of therapies incorporated into treatment is chosen based on the needs of the individual. In general, however, most clients will take part in:
If a client would like to release medical information to another medical professional, this can be facilitated by signing a waiver. The medical professional may contact the treatment program at any time after that has been processed to access the client’s records. If appropriate, the treatment team at the rehab may be able to build a treatment plan in conjunction with a client’s personal doctor and/or work together to create an aftercare plan.
Most residential treatment centers with available resources will reach out to family members to provide them with support and information as needed. It can be helpful to the person enrolled in rehab to know that concerned family members are available and supportive, thus rehab programs often make an effort to include them whenever possible.
However, in cases where a family member is struggling with drug or alcohol addiction issues, it is recommended that everyone undergo treatment as needed. It is difficult to remain clean and sober if returning to a home where someone is actively living with a substance abuse problem, thus family involvement may be limited when untreated addiction is an issue.
Every rehab program has a different set of offerings to support clients in recovery. Most residential treatment programs will offer:
Medical care is often part of the treatment included at an inpatient treatment facility. It is usually available onsite and the main reason why many clients choose a residential program over outpatient care.
Just as with psychological treatment, medical care at an inpatient facility begins with stabilization if the client is in crisis and is followed by an intensive evaluation and assessment to identify all issues. A treatment plan to address all symptoms and disorders is created, allowing residents of the inpatient facility to enjoy ongoing medical monitoring and care as needed throughout their treatment program. At the cessation of treatment, an aftercare plan is built based upon new treatment goals that will facilitate ongoing care in recovery.
Many residential treatment programs begin with a recommended standard length of time – 30 days, 60 days, or 90 days, in most cases – and ask that all new clients commit to the minimum length of time with the understanding that if more time is needed, then extension is available.
In most cases, 30 days is the bare minimum and does not provide a very solid foundation in long-term recovery. A minimum of 90 days helps to ensure that the client is not only through the heaviest of the detox symptoms but is knowledgeable and practiced in the coping skills that will help to avoid relapse for the long haul. If more time is needed because the client does not yet feel stable, an extended stay can provide more time to develop the skills necessary to thrive in recovery. For every client, the length of time needed in residential treatment may vary, so it is important to be aware and communicative with the therapeutic team in determining the appropriate length of stay.
Every residential treatment program should provide assistance in creating an effective and informed aftercare program. Based on the treatment goals met during the time in residence and the client’s personal goals for the future and resources near home, an aftercare plan should allow for: