When it’s time for treatment, you may often consider convenience first. But the truth is, change is a higher priority than convenience. Your first inclination may be to find a center close to home, but there are some very sound reasons for seeking treatment out of state for yourself or a loved one. Choosing a program far from home is often recommended by treatment professionals. Here are a few reasons why:
- You get a fresh start. Pursuing treatment in another geographical area provides a physical “fresh start” as well as a mental one. A new location allows you to move forward without constantly being reminded of past mistakes. Being just around the corner may seem like a good idea initially, but the goal is long-term recovery, not short-term convenience.
- You face fewer distractions. A new place far from home doesn’t allow for as many distractions. You won’t run into “friends” who are also seeking treatment and family and loved ones can be involved in the process in a safe, regimented way. Seeking help is a life-changing decision, and ditching old, harmful patterns is necessary. That’s much easier to do with a change of scenery.
- You can avoid triggers more easily. In a new location, there are no memories of past substance abuse. You’re not near any locations or neighborhoods that are triggers. There are no old groups of friends that you’re tempted to track down. In a faraway location, you have the freedom to truly focus on you and your recovery, and that’s what the process should be all about.
- You may find a better fit. While you may know of programs close to home, that doesn’t mean those facilities are the best fit for you. Treatment programs vary—they offer different specialties, clinicians and experiences. Finding one that meets your unique needs is key.
Most people seeking help for addiction don’t initially plan to travel for treatment, but once they do, they see the benefits almost immediately. Treatment is a short time in the much longer process of recovery. Doing it right will give you the foundation you need for long-term sobriety and a happy, healthy future.