It is almost always in the midst of crisis that families seek out drug addiction treatment programs. After months of attempts to stay clean and sober, continuous relationship problems at home, and ongoing financial difficulties, as well as difficulties with the law in many cases, many families get to the point where “enough is enough” and make the move toward treatment.
Unfortunately, the process of choosing the right drug addiction treatment is far from straightforward. There are literally hundreds of programs to choose from, all with different philosophies of care, resources for clients, levels of expertise among staff, and program requirements and structures. How do you know which one is right for your loved one?
Start with What You Know
The drug addiction treatment program that will work best for your situation will be chosen based on its ability to meet the needs of your loved one and your family. This means that rather than looking at what is available and attempting to figure out what will work for you, it is recommended that you consider what your individual needs are and then connect with a program that offers services that can help. Some considerations include:
- Co-occurring mental health disorders: If your loved one is living with a co-occurring mental health disorder – as almost half of all people living with a substance use disorder are – then it is necessary for the treatment program to provide treatment for both the addiction disorder and the mental health issue. Rather than seeking care for these issues separately, it is important to recognize that the symptoms of both are entwined and the most effective form of care is an integrated treatment program that can assist on both fronts.
- Underlying medical ailments: For many, chronic pain is at the base of their problem with drug abuse and addiction, and if that is the case in your loved one’s situation, it is imperative that management of that issue is part of drug addiction treatment. Learning how to manage symptoms of underlying disorders without reverting to drug and alcohol abuse is a huge part of learning how to live a life in sobriety.
- Finance and insurance limitations: Money is almost always a concern when seeking drug addiction treatment. It can be wise to choose a program that works with your insurance company and/or offers sliding scale payment plans for treatment services.
- Commitments and responsibilities: For some, depending on the nature of the substance use disorder, there is a concern about maintaining responsibilities at work and/or taking care of dependent family members at home. It may be necessary to take a hiatus from all responsibilities in order to focus on recovery at an inpatient drug addiction treatment program, but it may also be beneficial to choose an outpatient drug rehab that allows for more scheduling flexibility and the ability to continue remaining engaged with the positive parts of life.
- Personality style and preference: Does your loved one have religious preferences that influence how they view the world? Is holistic care and treatment of special interest? Are there certain types of therapies that seem like a good fit for you (for example, EMDR or exposure therapy for those who struggle with PTSD)? Connecting with a treatment program that speaks to you and your loved one on a personal level may help to increase engagement in treatment. The more one is connected with recovery, the more likely it is to establish stability in recovery for the long-term.
Travel Is an Option
Many families confine their search for the right drug addiction treatment program to the facilities that are close to home. In some cases, you may find exactly what you need right around the corner, but in other cases, especially if you need a certain level of care or would like to take part in a specific type of therapy that is only offered by specific programs, it may be a good idea to widen your parameters and consider drug rehab programs that are out of town or even out of state.
Many find that there are a great number of benefits to putting some physical distance between themselves and the place where they were actively living in addiction. It is also beneficial to give their relationships with people at home some space to breathe as they turn their attention to the work of recovery, and family members can turn their attentions toward healing on their own terms. Even the travel time between home and rehab can provide a positive and active transition from a life defined by drinking and drugs to a life defined by balance and wellness.
Putting It All Together
Once you know what it is that your loved one needs – inpatient or outpatient care, treatment for co-occurring disorders or treatment for addiction alone, specific therapies and treatments or a certain type philosophy of care – take a look at the programs that are close to home. Do any of them offer all that you are looking for? Are they willing to work with your insurance company? If not, do not feel that you must compromise services or value. Instead, widen your search and consider programs that are a few towns over, across the state, or even across the country. The priority is connecting your loved one with care that will be effective, because ultimately, whether a program is close to home or cheap will not matter if it does not offer the services necessary to heal.