When someone has realized their addiction is interfering with their daily activities, it can be overwhelming to decide to seek recovery at a professional treatment center. Entering into treatment is never easy, but admitting there is a problem and looking for treatment is the hardest part of the process. The needs of the individual in question must come first. The journey to a new life is just beginning, and those in need will require a great deal of help along the way to find their footing. There is nothing wrong with admitting you need help. In fact, it means you are stronger than you have ever imagined.

Addiction is a disease that once it has developed, it can last a lifetime. You will be required to manage and monitor it as you would with any disease. No one is exempt from its long reach, and it is not determined by socioeconomic class, age, or background. The toughest part of addiction is that no matter how deep the person is into their sobriety, relapse can occur at any moment. This is where a good treatment center will be of strong value.

To get the best results while treating the addiction, the client must enter the continuum of care. This begins in a medically screened detox where the addiction specialists will formulate a plan. This plan will determine the therapies best suited for the journey, and which treatment programs will work best for the unique need. In some cases, these professionals will suggest a residential treatment center upon completion of detox.

What Can I Expect From Residential Treatment?

The goal of residential treatment is to start from scratch. It is here that you will build a brand-new foundation that can stand the test of time. As mentioned above, addiction can follow you for the rest of your life, and at any moment, you can slip into a relapse. Relapse does occur and is nothing ever to be ashamed of, but the right residential treatment center will better prepare you on how to cope.

The duration, types of therapies, and the style of living will be dependent on the needs of the client. Treatment won’t solve every person’s problem, but different variations of it will come into play. It requires the expertise of the professionals to determine what is best. The evolution in science and addiction therapy has made treatment more efficient than ever before.

The assessment of needs will take place during the detox portion of treatment that includes questions about your medical needs, psychological needs, and social needs. This will all be discussed in the medical plan. Even the best are prone to mistakes. If the client does not respond adequately to any portion of the treatment, the therapies or duration of stay can be changed at any time.

How long treatment lasts depends on a variety of factors, which include the severity of addiction, the type of drugs being consumed, and other underlying factors such as a dual diagnosis. The average stay in residential treatment is around 30 days, but it can last anywhere up to 90 days. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) suggests that the process in its entirety from detox to completion should last 90 days. This will yield the most effective results. All cases are on a client to client basis, and this could differ vastly from one to another.

Therapy is at the forefront of treatment as lays the foundation for the rest of the life.

It is in therapy where the clients can dive deep into their minds and begin rewiring their brain. This is where healthy habits will start as well as an overhaul process that revitalizes mind body and soul. Addiction treatment has improved leaps and bounds over the years, and some of the most common therapies used to treat individuals will be listed below.

Behavioral Therapy

Treatment plans vary client to client, but the most common type of therapy is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. The main objective of behavioral therapy is to change an individual’s behaviors through motivation, incentive programs, and thought analysis. The main principle of (CBT) is that your behaviors begin with thoughts and having the ability to control these thoughts and implementing coping skills will allow all behaviors to change. This is especially beneficial during relapse prevention planning.

Group Therapy

Those who enter treatment will be at different stages in their lives. Some may have previously experienced treatment, and for some, this will be the first time. An advantage for clients will be group therapy sessions. No matter what stage someone is at in their life or their treatment, everyone is on this same journey together. There are days when loneliness will fill the emotions, but the group will be there to help uplift you. Talking about your experiences with a group of people who truly empathize is very powerful.

Motivational Interview

Key issues must be identified for a stint in treatment to be beneficial. In most cases of addiction, there are other underlying factors, such as depression, that fuel drug use. Once all of these are identified, the proper course of action can be taken. Once this is done, implementing positive thought into the situation can help foster positive outcomes. Embrace the change and think it into reality. Once this process has been truly fostered within the thoughts, the real change begins.


To move forward, you must accept who you are as a person in this world. We all make bad decisions, and those can’t be changed. All that can be controlled is what’s ahead, and learning to focus on that is another step in recovery. Mindfulness is one of the core beliefs in treatment, and this is achieved through meditation and focusing on what’s happening now. Residential treatment will help incorporate this into the daily lives of the client.

Family Therapy

Addiction affects many and not just the user. This is often referred to as the family disease because those around the user are often experiencing hardship in their own lives as a result of addiction. Treatment must consist of healing everyone involved in the situation whether it’s firsthand or secondary. By doing so, each spectrum of the user’s life can begin in the healing process.

Life Skills Training

Some of those who enter into treatment have no formal training in life. Their addictions began young and consumed them at an early stage of their lives. Residential treatment allows someone to learn some of the skills we take for granted. These can include cooking, managing a budget, creating a resume, meal prepping, and self-care. A person who is reentering everyday life after treatment will need these skills. These lessons will allow recovering users to lead a normal life.

Is Residential Treatment Right For Me?

The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) has created an assessment that helps clinicians pair clients with programs that meet their needs. The ASAM criteria will better help clients understand what residential treatment requires as they weigh whether the program is right for them.

Residential treatment is one of the more intense levels in the continuum of care and follows a medical detox. There are six dimensions to approach treatment holistically. All factors are taken into account, such as psychological, social, and medical needs, but the ASAM criteria go as follows:

  • Acute Intoxications/withdrawal potential: Has the client recently used? Were they intoxicated at the time of arrival to detox? This will require a stricter level of care.
  • Biomedical conditions and complications: An accompanying medical condition requires a specific type of treatment, and this means more intensive care is necessary.
  • Emotional, behavioral, or cognitive conditions and complications: Mental health conditions are often part of the process. These must be addressed due to the intensive level of care required.
  • Readiness to change: This is significant. Those who are forced into treatment will likely not be as successful as those ready to change.
  • Relapse, continued use, or continued problem potential: What is the likelihood of a relapse? Will more intensive treatment be necessary? Is the client ready?
  • Recovery/living environment: Where will the client be released after recovery? Are there drugs present? The individual must be removed from any unhealthy living quarters to ensure long-term success.

Long-Term Care Options

After treatment ends, recovery is just beginning, and for many, it never ends. All of the tools and new behaviors learned will be on full display as the client enters back into society. The best plan is always to have a plan, and during treatment, a relapse prevention plan will have been coordinated with the addiction specialist team. These plans will help alleviate stress when faced with triggers that were talked about in therapy. Emotions will be at an all-time high, but over time the client will have gained the ability to control these. For some, moving to sober living homes will help mitigate the risks faced on the outside.

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