Residential rehab centers have gained in popularity over the last few years, with more and more addiction treatment centers popping up around the world. Indeed, these days some patients with addiction problems won’t just look at local rehab centers – some are willing to travel across the country – or even the world – in order to visit a specific rehab center.
But why, and what should you expect from a residential rehab center?
The Benefits of Residential Rehab Centers
Elimination of Supporting Behaviour
One key problem that addicts of all forms experience is that they slowly fall into a “pattern” or “habit”. Over time, rather than fitting their addiction around their everyday life, their everyday life begins to support and encourage their addiction.
An alcoholic, for example, might start to develop friendships with other drinkers. In this way, the volume and frequency of their alcohol intake won’t be frowned upon by their friends. Another example might be a gambler, who changes the way they walk home from work each evening, so as to pass a specific bookmakers where they can place a bet.
Once these new patterns become ingrained, they make beating an addiction all the more complex, as now one needs to break not just the basic addiction but also all the various behaviours and habits that supports it. This means that addiction treatment therapy can be rather more complex (and arguably less effective) when it is done in your home environment.
Many addicts seeking help find that totally removing themselves from their everyday environment – such as through the use of a residential rehab center – can help to instantly break these everyday habits, thus making it easier to conquer an addiction problem.
Focus On The Task In Hand
Another benefit of residential treatment centers is that they enable one to focus purely on getting better. By essentially checking yourself into a hotel with a dedicated team of therapists and medical professionals, you remove all the everyday distractions that have prevented you from tackling your addiction to date.
The environment at a residential center is carefully monitored and managed to eliminate these distractions, as well as stressful events that may trigger an attack, and instead allow you to focus 100% of your time and energy on your treatment. For this reason, many people find that a residential treatment program helps them to focus on their treatment and that they see faster improvements as a result.
Nobody likes to admit they’ve got a problem. For many of us, the thought of visiting our family doctor or sitting around a room in our home town discussing our problems has very little appeal. The potential for being “found out”, and the ensuing embarrassment that may stem from this, keeps many people from seeking help for their addiction.
Another benefit of residential centers is that you can attend one many miles away from where you live. You also won’t be constantly seen going in and out of the building, and the odds of meeting anyone you know there are almost nil.
For this reason, residential rehab centers can be an ideal way to start seeking addiction therapy without needing to risk exposing yourself in your local community. Travelling across the country – or even the world – means you’ll likely be surrounded by people you’ll never see again.
In this way you can return back to your home town some weeks later, having broken the initial addiction, and all without your friends or work colleagues having any idea of the addiction treatment you’ve been undergoing.
What To Expect From Residential Rehab Centers
Residential centers vary from place to place, but all of them represent a “sanctuary” where you can shut yourself away from normal, everyday life and instead focus on getting better. In most cases the initial step is an assessment of your personal situation. You will likely receive some form of screening to measure your current level of addiction (blood alcohol level, for example) and will then undergo a question-and-answer session that will allow the doctors to guage your addiction.
It is essential to be honest during this process – and throughout your treatment – because doing so will enable your doctors to create the most appropriate treatment plan for you – and to modify it during your treatment if necessary.
After this initial induction phase your treatment will begin. It is normal for access to the outside world to be restricted for the first few weeks. For example internet access, cell phones and personal visitors may all be banned, as may sources of media such as television or newspapers. While this may prove uncomfortable at first, you should appreciate that this is really for your own benefit.
Studies have shown that the first few weeks of any addiction treatment plan are the most challenging, so eliminating these distractions result in a noticeably better treatment success rate.
Your days will normally be quite structured and may involve exercise sessions, group therapy, creative activities and one-to-one counselling. All of these various elements are designed to keep your mind active and to give you the best possible chance of beating your addiction. As a result, you are recommended to try and follow the guidelines set out as closely as possible.
While the initial weeks may prove a challenge, you will be surprised by just how quickly the time passes. The various structured events mean that each day passes quickly, and you will soon find yourself forming life-long friendships with other addicts like yourself who have chosen to regain control of their life.
Soon enough you will likely be able to accept personal visitors if you choose to do so, and will start gaining additional privileges and freedoms. Hopefully, if all goes according to plan, your time at the treatment center will pass swiftly and painlessly, and soon enough you’ll find your time coming to an end and the worst of your addiction already behind you.