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Choosing an Addiction Treatment Provider

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By: Renaissance Recovery

Medically Reviewed by: Diana Vo, LMFT

Last Updated: 7/1/2021

Authored By: Joe Gilmore

Table of Contents

Choosing an addiction treatment provider

Choosing an addiction treatment provider can be cumbersome. The internet is full of options and many of them make thinly veiled promises of a miraculous and speedy recovery. The truth is less glamorous. In reality, recovery can be a lifelong process. The longer a person has been wrapped up in addiction, the longer it will take to be free from it – but the threat of relapse is always there. Having a proper relapse prevention plan is something you’ll learn as you progress through the recovery process. Finding a treatment provider means leveraging many tools. Once you’ve found a list of potential providers, choosing an addiction treatment provider gets a little easier. For starters, you probably know enough to know that recovery begins with the detox or rehab process. This is the process whereby the patient checks into a location supervise and monitor the patient as the toxins are purged from their system. As you’ll read in virtually all recovery literature, choosing an addiction treatment provider means changing the people, places and things that contributed, facilitated or enabled the addiction to process to a critical point. In plain English, this means choosing an addiction treatment provider that is far away from the patient’s normal surroundings. Out of town is good, out of state can be even better. The patient needs a fresh start, in fresh surroundings.

Evaluating your options

If you or your loved one is just starting the search for a rehab or detox program call us – we have a select few with whom we work from around the country. The ones we recommend are only those who have demonstrated integrity, professionalism and integrity. You’re free of course, to select your own detox or rehab facility and if you’re interested in doing so, there are a number of independent organizations that provide a list of options in every state. Check this site for a list in every state. Be sure to select a program that is at least 60 days long and if possible, 90 days in length.

Prepare for life after rehab

If you think a stint in rehab will cure someone suffering from addiction, you’re mistaken. Rehab detoxifies the patient and gives them a clearer head. The rest of the time there is coming to grips with the realization that there are underyling problems that fueled tha addiction. If you stay in rehab long enough, you can get a better idea of what those problems are. After that, it’s time to develop a plan to address those issues. Any personal traumas, personality issues, unresolved relationship issues must all be identified, addressed and treated. A system of coping and managing potential relapse triggers is something that can only be done in aftercare.

What is aftercare?

Aftercare, as you probably guessed, is the care that come after rehab. It includes personal counseling, family counseling, therapy and learning new skills to help the patient cope with life’s daily challenges. It many include any number of programs including:

  • IOP – Intensive Outpatient care
  • PHP – Partial Hospitalization
  • Outpatient Treatment – Living on the outside while maintaining a rigorous, structured program of continuing therapy.
  • Sober Living – A transitional living arrangement where patients start working, going to school and rebuilding their lives as they prepare to fully re-enter society. Sober-living homes are relatively less restrictive extended-care facilities that can offer a transitional environment of support before a person returns home, allowing him to reintegrate into society without the use of substances. The individual lives in a house with other people in recovery, takes on daily responsibilities such as chores and a job, and attends group therapy sessions. Since the person lives in a sober environment with likeminded peers, there is less of a likelihood of relapse than if he was to immediately return to a home environment.

Through the use of a structured treatment program, patients in recovery can learn new ways of thinking and acting. These changes will make patients aware of past behavior and help them create plans to avoid slipping back into the destructive habits and dependencies that brought them into treatment in the first place. Long-term treatment will only be effective if it can meet the requirements of the individual in rehab, and like other treatment options, there is no one-size-fits-all answer to long-term rehab. Understanding the difference between programs is important to the process of choosing an addicttion provider.

What you should be looking for

There are many things you should consider during your selection process: Who’s paying for it? If you have insurance coverage of any kind, you want to leverage that., Check your insurance by calling addiction providers to explore your options. Some states provide assistance. What other obligations does the person have? Personal relationships, jobs, school and other factors can influence your choice. Reputation – In 2018, a companty called “Legit Script” started verifying and monitoring addiction treatment providers. Those who passed their rigorous review were awarded certification and all the addiction treatment centers that have earned this mark proudly advertise it on their website (like we do). Location – There are those who suggest that seeking addiction treatment in a rural location provides better results. What they don’t tell you is that there’s no independent data to support that. The stark reality is that many people, once done with their long-term care plan, often choose to resettle far from home. We see this often, especially because we’re in sunny Southern California, where the weather is amazing and jobs are plentiful.   Most of all, you should be asking questions. Those questions might include:

Can you provide me with a sample treatment plan?

The therapy options will vary based on the individual’s needs, their addiction history and personal preferences. While the treatment center might have a fairly standardized plan, they should be able to show you something to see how they handle various issues.

What is the supervision like?

This is an especially important issue to clarify if you are choosing an inpatient program. You will need to know what sorts of resources the staff can provide in order to ensure that the person does not have the opportunity to relapse. Being closely monitored might sound like a drag to the patient, there’s no way you should accept a provider who isn’t closely monitoring their patients.

How much one-on-one therapy time is provided?

Many rehab facilities predominately offer therapy in a group format, and sometimes, that group therapy edges out individual therapy options that are necessary. One writer, after investigating common industry practices, found that some programs offer up to 8 hours of group therapy every day, with little time left for individual therapy.  Individual therapy is important because each individual has their own set of personal demons with which they must contend. It can be helpful for the person you love to have access to a counselor in one-on-one therapy sessions. Family therapy should be a part of the treatment plan. Asking this question ensures that the facility you choose  provides that kind of care. In cases where family members refuse to participate, we have other options.

What licenses and accreditations do you hold?

This subject can be somewhat complicated, as the license and certification requirements can vary depending on the state and facility type. Some individual providers do not need the same oversight that a facility does. So you will not get the same answer from different provider types. They need different things in order to get the job done. But the people you ask should be able to demonstrate compliance with at least some oversight committees and groups. Those that cannot show that they are in compliance might best be avoided.   Overall, you must choose based on your needs, your financial situation, the perceived quality of care, the reputation of the provider and whether or not the facility seems like a good fit for the patient’s specific situation. Doing your homework is important – a life may depend upon it.

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Diana Vo, LMFT

Diana is an addiction expert and licensed marriage and family therapist who has been in the field of mental health for over 10 years.

Joseph Gilmore

Joseph Gilmore has been in the addiction industry for three years with experience working for facilities all across the country