Drug and alcohol abuse continues to increase in the United States. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), almost 2.1 million hospital visits in 2009 were the result of drug abuse. Also, according to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), 23.5 million people 12 years of age and older needed treatment for an illicit drug or alcohol abuse problem in 2009. Sadly, of these, only 11.2 percent received treatment. Furthermore, recent studies have shown that approximately 53 percent of adults in the United States have reported that one or more of their close relatives has a drinking problem. And, in 2009, an estimated 30.2 million people 12 or older reported driving under the influence of alcohol at least once in the past year.
For those who seek treatment, whether it was the result of an intervention or personal choice, it is a commendable journey to undertake. Choosing a drug or alcohol rehab center is an incredibly important decision, and one that involves a variety of factors.
However, first, it’s important to know that typically the process of treatment includes living at a treatment center and then residing at a transitional living home, such as a halfway house. The first is to detox and medically tend to the addiction and physical ramifications of ending the alcohol or drug intake. Then, a halfway house provides the opportunity to make the transition from an addicted life to sober living.
Before choosing a treatment center, individuals and families should ask the following questions:
- Does the center provide on-site assessment?
- Will the facility develop a comprehensive treatment plan for the addict, one that will be constantly monitored, updated, and modified as treatment progresses?
- Is the facility safe?
- Is the facility private?
- What are the credentials and experience of the professionals and members of the treatment team?
- Is the facility location ideal for the addict?
- What will treatment cost? Is the cost covered by insurance?
- Is there a financial aid option or some type of financing or scholarship available?
- Is the program geared toward the addict’s age, gender, and severity of the addiction?
- Is the center able to provide a comprehensive treatment program that treats all aspects of the addict, and not just the destructive behavior of the addiction?
- Does the center have any affiliations with hospitals and research groups that keep it on the cutting edge of addiction treatment?
- What treatment approaches does this program use regarding detoxification?
- Does the treatment include individual, family, and group therapy; use of medications; cognitive-behavioral therapy; a 12-step program, relapse education and prevention; and a long-term recovery?
- Is the facility equipped to assess and treat co-existing disorders, such as mental health disorders?
- Does the center have programs in place to treat the addict’s family?
- How is the family involved in the treatment process, decisions, and recovery phase?
- What type of ongoing treatment does the facility provide once the initial phase of treatment has been completed?
- Does the program provide outpatient, inpatient, residential, and short-stay options?
Once a treatment center is agreed upon, it’s best to also find a sober living home as well. To do so, ask around local AA or NA meetings about those with good reputations, or check with a respected treatment center, perhaps with the treatment center you chose.
Also, choose one that is reasonably near the meetings you will be attending. Most halfway houses accommodate residents until 6 months to a year or two of continuous sobriety or clean time. Houses that have a range or recovery time for people currently residing at the house, such as someone with one month, 90 days, and 6 months are preferable to one with all residents with under 30 days in recovery. Also, those with a live-in manager are generally better choices. Some houses have a democratic process, in which the residents choose who will be coordinator or manager.
The point of this article is to encourage investigation into the facilities you choose for your treatment. Making the decision to begin treatment is the first step; ensuring you’re in good hands during your sober living process is just as important.
If you are reading this on any blog other than Transcend Recovery Community or via my RSS Feed, it is stolen content without credit. You can find me on Twitter via @RecoveryRobert Come and visit our blog at http://TranscendRecoveryCommunity.com/blog