Rehab Guide

Family Involvement


It is daunting to start a rehabilitation program since you feel alone and you are met with fear and uncertainty of the outcome. Having family to support you along the way has been proven to have higher chances of succeeding with your program, ensuring diminished chances of relapse. Many rehabilitation centers have programs that integrate the role of families into the treatment. Family Therapy involves having the patient’s family playing an active role in identifying how their relationships with the patient co-relate to the addiction. Family Therapy aims to understand how interpersonal relationships and actions of the family member can affect the patient and vice versa. Basically, it is not just the patient who is assessed and counseled, but oftentimes it’s the family as well. Through numerous interactions with the patient and the family, the counselor or therapist is able to assess various factors that can shed light on the patient’s addiction, and by having open lines of communication with everybody, the counselor is able to identify and gauge the needs of each one.

There are various types of Family Therapy each using specific methods. There’s the Functional Family Therapy Model that strives to greatly motivate change within the family unit by re-categorizing the roles of each family member to make sure that everybody lives up to their potential for the common good. There’s also Multi-dimensional Family Treatment that dissects the patient and the parent’s actions, assessing parental practices, peer relations and the like that contribute to the addiction. Multi-systemic Therapy involves not just familial relations but outside forces such as community, peer, academic, and or professional relations. Multi-family Educational Intervention is more of an informative method of therapy wherein the family attends sessions or seminars and they do exercises that teach them to positively encourage their loved one to continue an addiction-free life, and so on. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is often used in conjunction with Family Therapy since it deals with self-actualization and modifying one’s view of oneself for the better.

Whatever the method, there’s enough evidence to prove that with the healing of both the patient and the people surrounding him, everyone benefits. The therapy rebuilds relationships, strengthens trust, and opens discussion. Everybody knows that there’s a goal to reach, and everybody’s working towards one direction. It is one thing to feel secure with oneself when thinking about kicking a debilitating habit, and it’s another to know that there are people who care for you and are with you in seeing you through to your goal. The feeling is empowering. Having the support of family is crucial in the days following the end of rehab. They will keep you in check and will follow through with that they learned in therapy. Think strength in numbers, and you will find yourself overcoming challenges easier and with a little more confidence.


Types of Treatment Facilities


There are many treatment facilities all offering different treatments, styles, methods, arrangements, and settings. You can be met with a deluge of options and may feel overwhelmed, but think of that as a good thing. With more choices, you can assess the features that are available to you and use them to your advantage. The trick is to be familiar with the terms and then start forming a mental checklist of the things you feel would be beneficial to your treatment. The important thing is to know what you want and to match your expectations with the type of treatment center that is right for your particular addiction.

Treatment facilities offer programs where you can opt to reside at a center (inpatient), or go there on multiple occasions to receive treatment (outpatient). The centers can vary from simple to luxurious, from quaint to large-scale. Some have modest facilities to more complex campus style accommodations. Some facilities take pride in their bare-bones approach to treatment, which could feel clinical in nature, whereas there are centers that have the look and feel of being at a resort, thus the endless recreational options, beautiful scenery, and spa-like atmosphere. There are many accommodation options and it’s really just a matter of one’s preference and financial means.

Depending on the degree of addiction, you can choose from short-term or long-term (28-days or more) durations. There is a feature called medically-assisted detoxification that enlists a staff of medical professionals to get you through this initial phase safely and under supervision. Some centers offer Dual diagnosis treatment that addresses both the addiction and possible psychological disorders such as anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder and others that accompany the abuse problem. You will encounter the term Methadone treatment, which is a drug therapy given to people with Opiate addictions. Many rehabs are strong advocates of the 12-step program, which are founded on guiding principles formulated by Alcoholics Anonymous, while some are not.  Some facilities specialize in recovery or extended stay programs, allowing a gradual transition into going back to your normal routines outside of rehab. There are Wilderness programs that use nature activities such as hiking or outdoor sports to assist in the therapy. There are Equine therapies, using horse-related duties, horse care or ranch care for a calming effect during rehab. A lot of rehabs also incorporate alternative wellness methods of acupuncture, yoga, Tai-chi and such. Some centers can be co-education or single sex facilities. There are facilities that treat just adults or purely adolescent addiction patients. Some can be Christian-based, mixing in spiritual counseling and church services into the program.

The possibilities are endless. Just remember to research the facility well. Do not hesitate to get as much information as possible. Call or e-mail them for clarifications. In the end, it’s your comfort and wellness that’s at stake, so investing your time in knowing your rehab center is already a good first step to recovery.

Before Entering Drug Rehab


So many questions will enter your mind before entering rehab, and the first one is usually “What will rehab be like?” Ideally, rehab will be a safe and comfortable place for you to assess your feelings or behaviors with a counselor, physician, or with other addiction patients in order for you to control your addiction. It is a safe place because you allow yourself to be surrounded by trained people who are physically there to help you. Even more so if admitted on a residential basis, you are automatically removed from your addiction environment (addiction of choice, bad influence of peers, negative cycle etc.). Rehab will offer you a structured day of activities that will range from counseling, group or individual sessions, recreational activities, seminars, and reflection time.

Once you have made a decision to enter rehab, choosing one is the next challenging step. When researching a facility take into consideration its accreditations (ensuring they are up to standard and use proven strategies), success rate (statistics from the center or testimonials from past patients), offered programs of treatment, financial arrangement, and most importantly its aftercare program. Aftercare programs will equip you with important personal and professional skills and will teach you lessons for a long-term continuous recovery.

Another common concern is knowing the level of treatment you should receive. Before entering rehab, you could ask for the advice of a physician or local social worker. Alternatively, you can always call your treatment center of choice and they will arrange an interview to assess how far into your addiction you are and the proper channels for treatment.

When preparing to go into rehab, it is best to check the policies of your facility, such as what to pack and what items are allowed and not allowed to bring. You are also probably concerned about detox before starting rehab. Detox is often done in the facility for medical and safety reasons. This is the ideal way of detoxification since you have experienced staff to help you and you’ll feel less worried during the uncomfortable sensations of withdrawal. Moreover, your rehab can strictly monitor you during this difficult time and make sure you are not falling into old habits.

Lastly, there’s the concern of certain freedoms of phone calls, going out, and family or friend visitations. The policies of centers will vary, but it’s safe to expect these “liberties” to be closely monitored and limited. Understand that these rules were put in place for good reason, quite possibly to ensure that you will totally devote yourself to recovery.


After Drug Rehab


You are finally done with rehab, what now? Completing your stay in rehab is no easy feat so congratulations. However, the hardest part of recovery comes when you are taken out of rehab and are left to fend off temptations on your own. This is where the true test of recovery comes. Which is why it is imperative to have an after care program.

After care programs are follow-up activities you can participate in that will maintain the positive skills and habits imparted by rehab. Like your time spent in rehab, these are structured activities you will engross yourself in to prevent relapse. These could be transitional living quarters, via sober companions, 12-step meetings, and outpatient programs.

Transitional living programs are residential programs wherein you are a part of a group of other recovering addicts and you are monitored by a facility manager that oversees safety and responsibility among residents. There will be regular and often random urine tests to check for drugs or alcohol. Your activities during your stay will further equip you with experience to deal with living independently when the time comes. Sober companions are like mentors who guide you, offer continuous support, and instill accountability to recovering addicts. The 12-step program, started by Alcoholics Anonymous, is a group of principles aimed to support your recovery, be it from any addiction. It helps promote a new direction for past behavior, while supporting other people. Outpatient care can be in the form of counseling, therapy, group or individual meetings, and educational programs for life outside rehab.

Apart from these, it is highly recommended that those recovering from any addiction live a healthy and active lifestyle. Regular exercise promotes the production of endorphins that encourages a positive mood. This can battle psychological problems such as anxiety and depression, which commonly accompany addictions. Eating right will also help. Keeping busy, starting a new hobby, and surrounding yourself with positive social connections are also key. Being idle will allow you to entertain thoughts of using again so finding a healthy distraction is necessary. Surround yourself with other recovering addicts to get their advice and have a network of sober companions. This way you have people supporting you who understand how you feel and they can help you with other addiction resources based on experience.

Early recovery can bring about many changes both physically and emotionally. Physically, your body reacts to withdrawal through symptoms like nausea, headaches, loss of concentration, insomnia and more. It is normal to go through this since your body is adjusting itself. It can be daunting but do know that these symptoms will go away in time. Emotionally dealing with your early recovery is challenging too because without alcohol or drugs, you will be more in tune with your feelings. To some, coming face to face with their anger, guilt, sadness, and frustration is taxing. But dealt with the right way, with a clear head, with therapy, and acceptance, healing will come at the right time.


Financial Considerations


The cost of going into a drug rehabilitation program could be none to expensive. Semi-funded and fully-funded government or state-run facilities can charge little to no fees. Medicare and Medicaid benefits can be used if needed. Some facilities are extensions of a town’s Health and Social Services Department that often offer outpatient versus inpatient treatment. Do bear in mind that the scope and quality of treatment at these places may be limited. For example, there won’t be private bedrooms, wellness treatments, and other luxuries. At the same time, the level of expertise of personnel will not be at par with privately-run facilities. Another disadvantage is that since they are mostly affordable or free, they are almost always full up to capacity. Getting in might take a long wait time, which is inconvenient since you’d want treatment to start as early as possible.

Privately-owned centers on the other hand, can cost you an arm and a leg. With fees ranging from $10,000 to $80,000, each depending on a center’s list of features and specialties, the cost could be staggering. But you always get what you pay for. Some centers get yearly certifications and accreditations that boost their credibility and expertise. They competitively hire therapists, doctors, and counselors that are qualified and regularly-trained. This coupled with nice living accommodations, specially-prepared meals, and recreational programs add up on the costs.

Now how does insurance enter into the equation? Fortunately, quite a number of centers accept health insurance. It depends on each individual’s coverage, so it’s vital to check your policy with your insurance company. Some will cover it partially under a mental health clause, or cover it via outpatient services. To ease your worries, most treatment centers offer financial assistance or insurance information assistance. Administrative counselors who specialize on these topics can be consulted for the best plan.

If you are uncertain about how to finance your rehab program you can look at a few options. Mentioned earlier, some centers have flexible payment terms or loan plans which are sponsored by medical loan companies. You can also take out a personal loan from your bank. Credit card payments can also be done although at high interest rates. If you do pay by credit card, take advantage of longer payment schemes and promotional rates that can be made available to you.  Alternatively, if you own high-cost personal items such as a vehicle, boat, electronics, watches or jewelry, you might want to consider selling these in exchange for a good chance at recovery.

Whatever financial situation you’re in, investing in a solid rehabilitation plan is priceless. You will be offered valuable education and skills in controlling your addiction, in turn, helping you regain control of your life. It may cost a lot but the rewards of turning your life around is worth it.