Making the decision to go to a drug and alcohol treatment center is a huge step in addiction recovery. It is the start of a difficult but incredibly rewarding journey. With the right help, you will soon be able to get back to a fulfilling life free from addiction.
But once you have made the decision, you still need to find the best drug and alcohol treatment center for you. Fortunately, there are many addiction treatment centers across the United States. However, not all rehabs are created equal and you need to know what you are looking for in order to get the right treatment.
To help you with your search, here are some important tips for finding the best drug and alcohol treatment center.
Look for centers with licensed mental health professionals (LMHPs)
One of the reasons finding a good treatment center can be tricky is that rehabs are not required to hire professional healthcare providers. Many treatment centers employ former addicts or other well-meaning individuals who haven’t had formal education in the mental health field. Since substance use disorder is a mental illness, it needs to be treated by actual professionals.
Look for centers that promise care from licensed mental health professionals (LMHPs). An LMHP has studied a postgraduate degree in psychology, psychiatry, or related fields. They have experience working with patients with mental illness and take a medical approach.
Choose dual-diagnosis centers
Addiction rarely occurs in isolation. Most people battling substance use disorders are also struggling with at least one other mental illness. This mental illness may have led to the addiction and, in some cases, addiction triggers the mental illness. Depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, and OCD are just some of the mental illnesses that commonly co-occur with addiction (known as co-occurring disorders).
Treating addiction without treating co-occurring disorders is ineffective. The individual continues to suffer from the other mental illness (es) and this often causes them to relapse. Find a drug and alcohol treatment center that promises a dual-diagnosis approach. They will provide treatment for mental illness by LMHPs who have studied these illnesses.
Ask about facilities
Many people assume that the best treatment centers are austere places that focus only on recovery. This is based on an old-fashioned view of addiction and mental illness, as well as a sense that people need to ‘earn’ comfortable care. However, the best rehabs provide facilities that give individuals the best opportunity to work on themselves.
Ask about when the facilities were last updated, what the rooms are like, and the number of people in inpatient treatment at one time. If you live nearby, go visit the center in-person to see if it provides the level of accommodation you need.
Compare success rate
There is a commonly-held misconception that only 5% of rehab patients recover. This may be true at some centers, but good rehabs boast success rates of 80% and over. It is very difficult to measure success in addiction treatment, but that doesn’t make it impossible. While you will have to take the center on its word regarding success rates, it is a good sign that they treat recovery like any other medical treatment – as something that should be measured and held to high standards.
If a rehab center tells you that there is only a 5% chance you will recover, they are not the kind of center that you want to put your trust in.
Holistic treatment matters
The primary treatment offered at good drug and alcohol treatment centers is based on medicine and mental health care. They offer LMHPs who provide psychotherapy, non-addictive medication, and other treatment modules. However, good centers also offer secondary treatments, often referred to as holistic treatment.
These holistic treatments include meditation, yoga, equine therapy, and other non-medical approaches. In isolation, these treatments are not an effective approach to addiction recovery. But they definitely supplement primary treatments. They offer a sense of balance within the rehab while helping patients work on coping mechanisms they will use when they leave rehab.
Good rehabs do not sell themselves on these secondary treatments, but they do offer them as an important part of the process.
Finally, the treatment you get in a drug and alcohol rehab should make you feel like you are being taken care of. This does not mean that every whim of yours is catered to, but that you get the sense that you’re best interests are always in mind. Receiving kindness from staff members when doing your research will give you a good sense that a place is going to do what it takes to help you get better.
Finding the best drug and alcohol treatment center requires research. Follow the above tips to determine which treatment centers are likely to bring out the best in you.