Making the Choice
The 5 most Important Characteristics of a Drug Rehab Center. Deciding to enter a drug rehab center is a life-changing step in the right direction, not only for a person suffering with substance abuse, but also for that individual’s family members and friends.
It’s also important for recovering drug abusers and their loved ones to pay close attention to exactly what features a treatment facility has to offer. While each person has unique needs, preferences and situations that should be taken into consideration, there are several characteristics that all rehabilitation centers should possess.
Substance abusers and their loved ones should select treatment facilities with the following qualities to ensure the best chances at success.
1.) Appropriate Environment
Although many people may initially focus on the types of treatment a rehab facility offers, it’s important to also consider the overall environment of the center. Recovering abusers will spend quite a bit of time at their chosen facilities, especially if they are receiving long-term care. The center’s environment will be one of the first things a recovering user notices and responds to when entering treatment.
Rehab can be challenging, so it’s essential for individuals to feel as comfortable as possible during the process. While there is no single ideal facility environment that will suit every person, treatment centers should be clean, spacious and generally attractive.
For people who are used to a luxurious lifestyle, it might be best to select a facility with high-end accommodations, food and common areas. Others may feel more comfortable in a facility with large outdoor spaces, access to nature-related activities and relatively simple living accommodations. The key is to choose something that is in-line with the preferences that recovering substance abusers already have in place, so they will have a smoother initial adjustment period, an easier time focusing on recovery and a greater likelihood of remaining in treatment.
It’s also highly important for drug rehab centers to be completely substance free and maintain strict rules about remaining that way. Individuals in recovery should be able to trust that they won’t be tempted by the presence of drugs while they’re going through the various stages of rehabilitation.
If drugs are present in a facility, it could lead to a setback in a patient’s progress, a relapse or it could even cause an individual to leave the treatment center. To give a recovering abuser the very best chance at success, rehab facilities should maintain comfortable, attractive and strictly drug free environments.
2.) Individualized Treatment
Just as people have various ideas of what makes a perfect treatment environment, they may also have different responses to types of rehabilitation strategies and programs. A successful rehab center will avoid offering one menu of addiction programs that all recovering drug abusers must follow.
Instead, recovery centers should give individuals in depth evaluations when they first enter the program. The staff members can then develop customized rehabilitation plans for each recovering user. However, the plans should feature enough flexibility that they can be adjusted depending on patients’ positive or negative responses to certain programs, their speeds of recovery and many other factors.
Rehab facilities should also allow recovering individuals to feel some level of control over their courses of treatment. In many centers, the initial daily schedules are fairly rigid but as individuals make more and more progress, they are encouraged to develop increased autonomy and make decisions about their daily activities.
With individually customized treatment methods, recovering abusers not only have the best chances at overcoming their addictions, but they are also more likely to have positive treatment experiences.
3.) Dedicated Professionals
While the environment and the methodology are both important features of a rehab center, it’s also vital for a facility to employ professionals who are experts in their field and who can contribute to a supportive environment.
From medical nurses to counselors, the professionals who are on staff at a rehabilitation facility need to be highly educated about the nature of addiction. Medical expertise may be particularly vital during the initial phases of treatment, which may include detoxification.
During detox, a person’s body can undergo physical reactions that sometimes warrant medical attention. Detox can be an intense process, but staff members with the proper experience and expertise can ensure that patients are safe and as comfortable as possible.
Not only are trained professionals significant for medical purposes, but they can also form a strong support system around recovering drug abusers. When someone enters treatment, it is often challenging to adjust to being away from close family members and friends. A caring and invested staff can provide the encouragement that users need to remain strong and focused.
4.) Focus on Mental and Emotional Health
As important as it is for individuals to physically abstain from drug use during and after the recovery period, it’s also vital for them to address the numerous mental and emotional issues that can come along with drug abuse.
- During an addiction, a drug abuser may experience:
- Social withdrawal
- Damaged personal relationships
It’s essential for treatment facilities offer counseling services that can get to the root of these and other issues. Trained counselors can help recovering users understand why their relationships may be strained and what steps they can take to repair them.
Counseling can also give recovering abusers the tools and insights they need explore the reasons they initially became addicted to drugs. Fully understanding and coping with these reasons can help a person recognize these factors in the future and avoid falling into the same risky behavioral patterns.
5.) Relapse Prevention and Aftercare
The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that drug abusers have a relapse rate of between 40 and 60 percent. There are numerous factors that can contribute to a relapse, including:
- High stress levels
- Occasions of celebration
- Lack of support from family members and friends
- Availability of the substance
- Exposure to people related to the substance abuse
- Lack of steady employment
While these are some of the common reasons for relapse, the truth is that people can relapse due to any number of unique factors. Because there are so many events, feelings and situations that may trigger the desire to use again, it’s vital for treatment facilities to anticipate these risks and help recovering abusers prepare for them.
One of the best ways to fight against this is by requiring recovering abusers to take a relapse prevention class. These classes focus on identifying exactly what factors caused individuals to use drugs in the past. They can also help recovering abusers develop smart and effective strategies for avoiding those activities, people and patterns of behavior.
Because practical issues like unemployment can also increase the chances of a relapse, successful treatment centers often provide aftercare, which offers the skills and information that can assist individuals as they reenter the regular world. These may include personal finance, interviewing techniques, job placement services, legal guidance and anything that helps participants get on their feet and avoid high-stress situations that may lead to relapses.
Fortunately, there are numerous drug rehab centers that embody all of these characteristics. Taking the time to find these high quality treatment options can significantly increase a drug user’s chances at achieving a lasting recovery.