According to an article in the New York Times, the federal government spends close to $15 billion each year on rehabilitation facilities. In support of drug and alcohol rehabilitation centers, health insurers fork out another $5 billion. To recover from any addiction requires support on multiple levels. While each component of the recovery process is helpful for a successful recovery, choosing the right rehabilitation facility is vital. As you explore different facilities, it is easy to feel overwhelmed by the options. With the guidance of a few simple questions, we hope to make the process less daunting.
- Where is the facility located?
Most states offer rehab facilities in some capacity. However, rehab programs with specialized staff and amenities may be located far from your home. As you explore treatment options, it is wise to consider how far you are willing and/or able to travel for treatment. If you are a single parent, college student or full-time employee, it is important to explore how distance will affect your treatment. For some individuals, the convenience of a local facility is necessary, while others find the physical distance beneficial in creating focused time to heal.
- What amenities does the facility offer?
Any individual entering rehab will have a plethora of facilities from which to choose. Some facilities have simple décor, a sterile environment and maintain the philosophy that the rehab experience does not equate a good time. Other programs resemble luxurious spas, offering mediation, massage and nutritious food options. Many other facilities meet in the middle, offering some specialized luxuries.While trained professionals may disagree on the effectiveness of these varying programs, evidence is inconclusive. Ultimately, the type of environment is an individual choice. The rehabilitation facility should be a place where you feel physically and emotionally comfortable, but do not desire to stay forever. While the amenities offered may seem insignificant in the recovery process, it is wise to consider the type of amenities you need to foster healing.
- Does the facility have well-trained therapists? How is therapy integrated into the recovery process?
While individuals differ vastly in their desires for facility location and amenities, most agree that having a well-trained staff is vital for the recovery process. Once you are physically stable, emotional healing can begin. Integral to this process are skilled and knowledgeable therapists. While in therapy, addicts learn to express and honor their emotions without relying on drugs, alcohol or food. Not only do therapists create a safe space for emotional expression, but encourage individuals to explore the deeper issues that lead to their addiction. Thus, programs that offer consistent therapeutic support during the recovery program tend to be more successful.Some states are starting to mandate that rehab facilities hire counselors who are trained in “evidence-based techniques”. For example, Oregon currently gives 54 percent of its mental health budget to those treatment facilities practicing only evidence-based techniques. Currently Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is the most effective technique for treating addictions; only trained professionals can practice it. Therefore, it is important to consider how therapy will interface with your recovery.
- How long is the recovery process you offer?
Individuals differ vastly in the length of time they need to fully recover. This disparity is mirrored in rehab programs. Some rehab programs will be a standard 28 days, while others will last much longer. While some individuals will feel more comfortable with a more thorough recovery process, others may need a shorter program for a variety of reasons. Being honest about the length of time you want to dedicate to your recovery is crucial to selecting a rehab facility.
- Is it possible to extend the length of stay?
As you explore the traditional length of stay required by different rehab programs, it is equally important to know whether there is flexibility in the schedule. Initially some individuals recovering may assume that a shorter length of stay is feasible and will be efficient. However, as the recovery process intensifies, some individuals may decide that a longer time period is beneficial for full recovery. Some rehab programs are flexible while others are more traditional.
If you have any questions at all about the rehab process, please call us. We are here 24 hours a day to answer.