You know you need help for addiction, but you don’t know where to begin. Drug rehab seems to be the answer, but how do you find the best drug rehab for your particular needs? How do you even know what your needs are?
Choosing a treatment center for alcoholism and drug addiction for yourself or someone you care about is one of the most important decisions of your lifetime. Most of us don't know what to look for in a treatment center. Not all treatment centers are the same—they differ widely by their treatment program options, staff qualifications, credentials, cost, and treatment services. Here are some general tips and things to think about as you make this life-changing decision:
Calling is the first step, and the most important one. When you call a drug abuse treatment advisor ask as many questions as you can think of, and make sure you understand the answers. If you don't, ask follow up questions, and ask for clarification.
How do I pay for drug rehab, and will insurance cover it?
The cost of drug and alcohol rehab depends on many factors . There are a number of associated costs, and various programs present these fees in different formats. You need to know what is included in the price, what will be added on to your bill as a fee-for-service program, and what services your health insurance will cover. This makes it extremely difficult to compare prices by simply asking the question - "What does drug rehab cost?"
If you are seeking the best value for your treatment dollar, remember: Cost is really most meaningful in the context of treatment quality, performance, and reputation. You may find a low-cost drug rehab program, but it may lack the services, clinical sophistication or reputation you desire. Affording addiction treatment – even at the best drug rehabs – can be made possible through insurance, loans and other financing options.
Does the addiction treatment center offer a variety of programs?
Alcoholism and drug addiction are chronic diseases that progress through predictable stages. Although people may have many of the same symptoms and experiences, addiction recovery is an intensely personal journey. An experienced health care professional, often an addiction expert or doctor specializing in addiction medicine, is best suited to make an accurate diagnosis and prescribe the most appropriate treatment.
The best drug rehab centers offer a variety of treatment programs that are designed to meet each individual’s unique needs. Depending on the patient’s drug history, family support, living environment, motivation and other factors, the best addiction treatment may include:
- Drug or alcohol detox
- Inpatient drug treatment at a hospital or clinic
- Residential drug rehab
- Outpatient addiction treatment
- Short-stay options
- Day treatment
- Partial hospitalization programs
- Transitional living programs or sober living houses
The length of stay in any of these programs will depend on the severity and stage of the disease.
Is the addiction treatment program medically based?
Drug abuse treatment centers that include onsite medical care offer unique benefits. For example, physicians and nurses are available to provide 24-hour care to monitor and ensure a safe withdrawal from alcohol and other drugs. In addition, specialists in addiction medicine can oversee the progress of each patient and make any necessary adjustments to the treatment plan.
It is important to know the medical credentials of a drug rehab program. For example, addiction treatment centers that earn JCAHO accreditation (Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations) meet national standards for providing quality medical care. Appropriate state licensing is also an important consideration.
Be sure to ask which medical costs are included in the price of addiction treatment.
How involved will my family be in the recovery program?
You may have heard the saying that “addiction is a family disease.” That’s because drug abuse and alcoholism impact the lives of family members as well as the alcoholic/addict. In many cases, family members don’t realize how deeply they have been affected by their loved one’s addiction and require their own therapy, support groups and education about the disease of addiction. In family therapy, these individuals can learn how to care for themselves and support their loved one during drug rehab.
Addiction treatment centers vary in the degree and quality of opportunities for family involvement . Some offer just a few lectures, while others offer family therapy, workshops, referrals, family weekends and visits, and other therapeutic activities. Ask if there is any time devoted to family programs and if group therapy is included.
Does addiction treatment include a quality continuing care program?
Relapse is an ongoing threat to recovery, even after years of sobriety. There are no magic solutions or quick fixes for the diseases of drug abuse and alcoholism. Recovery requires ongoing attention and care. The skills you learn at an addiction treatment center must be integrated into everyday life. As you can imagine, this process takes time. Some drug treatment programs offer a very limited, onsite-only follow-up program, which makes it difficult to use. The best addiction treatment programs will provide a quality continuing care program that supports and monitors recovery.