What to Expect in a Drug and Alcohol Rehab Program
Seeking help for drug or alcohol addiction is no easy task. But accessing a rehab facility is an important step towards your healthy future. Here’s what you can expect and why you shouldn’t be afraid.
Even when we’re suffering, we fear dramatic change. You know that your life will transform once you enter the path to recovery. But entering treatment is likely easier than the life your leading now.
That’s because you will have professionals with you for every step. You’ll interact with peers enduring the same struggles as you. And you have resources to help you build a better life.
Lost touch with friends and family? Rehab is an opportunity to invite them back into your life. That’s because you’re showing them you’re doing something about your problem.
Best of all, you won’t be treated like a bad person. You are an unwell person deserving of treatment.
Why Do I Need Rehab?
Too many addicts avoid getting treatment. In 2013, only 7.8% of US alcoholics get the treatment they needed. Drug and alcohol-related deaths are tragic and unnecessary given the options available.
Many addicts see recovery as some impossible achievement. They feel trapped in their habits and daily struggles with their abuse. At rehab, they learn it’s a gradual process they take one day at a time.
The most important element is your own motivation. You don’t need to walk through the doors fired up for recovery. You can enter the care of professionals and work with them towards wellness.
Visit Detox First
The first barrier to many addicts is detox. Most rehabilitation centers require patients to be sober. You need to visit a detox center to get clean before you begin.
Detox is strictly a process to relieve you from chemical dependency. You won’t need to make any life changes during this time. That’s why many users leave detox and simply pick up again.
You can see your treatment through. You won’t bounce between highs and lows anymore. And you’ll see a better standard of living right away.
Choose a Facility
Choosing your treatment space is another challenge. There are luxurious facilities that provide a wide range of services. But even public facilities provide the core resources you need.
Choose a facility with great reviews and the right cost. Work with your family to choose a location that’s right for you. Above all you want regular, personal attention from counselors and professionals.
Find a rehab facility local to sober friends and family. If you live in Pennsylvania, find a Pennsylvania rehabilitation facility near you.
5 Things to Expect Once Your Inside
The first thing to do when you enter a facility is congratulate yourself. You will have completed the first big challenge in your recovery. Now, relax and focus solely on your treatment moving forward.
You have only one goal starting now: recovery. All aspects of the outside world can be put aside. Money, employment, or school should not be of concern.
Here are five things to expect once you begin rehabilitation. As you invest in these benefits, be self-aware. You may notice social and psychological improvements right away.
The intake process will begin the moment you’re admitted. This is an important step often overlooked by new patients. Doctors and counselors will use intake information to plan your treatment.
Be as open and honest as possible about your struggles. These are the last people in the world to judge you. Share psychological issues, all addiction problems, and any self-destructive habits at this time.
2. Managing Withdrawal
Even with detox, you will likely experience withdrawal symptoms. These will range from shaky hands for alcoholics to dejectedness and depression.
Your caregivers can help to treat these effects. Communicate with them about your mental, physical, and emotional symptoms. They will prescribe medication or invite you to see a counselor if you need.
Therapy takes many forms in rehab. You will likely see a regular counselor and psychiatrist. You may not see your doctor often because of other patients. But your counselor will be with you at least once per week.
If you have psychological issues, you may see a therapist. Rehab therapists work with you not only on psychiatric issues. They will help you readjust to a normal human life as well.
This may involve behavioral therapy, group therapy, or both. Behavioral therapy will help you manage daily stresses and social interactions. Group therapy will help you find commonality with other patients and add a healthy social component to your life.
You probably were not taking the best care of yourself before. Those habits can stick with you just as much as your addiction. Rehab professionals will help you develop a healthier lifestyle in general.
They’ll start by feeding you three regular meals. You may have access to regular snacks and beverages as well. You need to build up your physical strength so you can engage in proper treatment.
They will also encourage healthy habits. This will be a key part of your therapy and work with your counselor. It behooves you to stick with these methods as they’re an often-overlooked part of your recovery.
These habits may include artistic expression, mental exercises, or journaling. Journaling is an excellent habit as it helps you track your progress. Check your entries after two or three weeks and you’ll notice your attitude has improved since then.
Organizing your thoughts in this way is a healthy habit. It allows you to address your issues one step at a time. You will get some practice with the written word again as well.
5. Post-Treatment Preparation
Your caregivers will begin talking about your treatment in relation to reentry to your life. They will not simply kick you out the door unprepared. Keep in mind, your treatment doesn’t leave once you leave.
You will likely be asked to participate in out-patient treatment. This is a great way to keep treatment front and center as you readjust to daily life. You will have access to critical care and resources this way.
They will make sure you understand your addiction through and through. The more you understand your mind and tendencies, the less likely you’ll relapse. They may encourage you to join a support group like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or Narcotics Anonymous (NA) as well.
“To compare is to despair.” This is your journey, not anyone else’s. Keep track of your own progress outside of the very different progress of others.
You will be amazed as to what this experience will bring you in the long term. But don’t be fooled–it is indeed a gradual path to get there. Don’t doubt yourself as you make steady progress every day.
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