Seven Things You Need in a Treatment Program

Seven Things You Need in a Treatment Program

People typically experience physical, mental and emotional withdrawal symptoms, indicating a need for supervised detox

The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) in 2011 published a long-form definition of addiction that detailed the complexities of the disease. Why does one person become addicted while another does not? Genetics, environment and mental health are all potential contributing factors that must be addressed for the recovery to last. Why is treatment so comprehensive? Contrary to misinformed stigmas, addiction involves physical changes in brain circuitry, transmissions, pathways and hierarchies. The disease affects the frontal cortex, nucleus accumbens, white matter connections, basal forebrain and amygdala, and neural receptors shrink and desensitize, decision-making skills unravel and certain chemicals experience a drop in natural production. Due to the comprehensive nature of addiction, treatment programs typically use a multi-faceted approach to address the various neurobiological, behavioral and environmental issues. To ensure the most positive recovery outcome possible, addiction patients want to find rehab centers with comprehensive programs, and below are seven qualities to seek out.

  1. Addiction Treatment Accreditation

When exploring different programs, always check the accreditation. This might sound like an obvious step, but it is not one a potential patient should overlook. Make sure the program and its therapists are all licensed by the state, and directly ask if anyone other than certified professionals will lead one-on-one or group sessions. Furthermore, find out the accrediting body behind the facility and ensure it is legitimate and not, for example, an organization the rehab center created itself. The majority of treatment centers are properly accredited, so it will unlikely be a problem, but recovery is important enough to be diligent about getting the best care.

  1. Medically Supervised Detoxification

A handful of drugs like hallucinogens (e.g., mushrooms and acid) are not associated with physical dependence, but most addictions do involve dependence making detox important. When breaking an addiction, people typically experience physical, mental and emotional withdrawal symptoms, and supervised detox is especially important for the physical. Prescription medication and gradual reductions in drug dosage might be part of the process, and for certain substances, gradual reductions are medically necessary. As explained by The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), abruptly stopping use of benzodiazepine-class medication (e.g., Xanax, Valium, Klonopin) can result in protracted symptoms and potentially fatal grand mal seizures.

  1. Integrated Mental Health Care

The American Journal of Psychiatry in 2005 reported findings that suggested 72% of drug abusers have one or more co-occurring mental health disorders. Many people self-medicate disorders with substance abuse, which in turn can initiate and accelerate disorders. Further complicating the cycle, the aforementioned 2005 study argued that addiction and mental health disorders might be different expressions of the same neurobiological issues. Mood disorders like depression and anxiety are among the most common diagnoses, and many patients were unaware of the condition until the rehab screenings.

  1. Evidence-Based Therapies

As with accreditation, most rehab facilities utilize evidence-based therapies, but prospective patients should make sure this is the case with the programs being considered. Therapists evaluate each person individually and customize his or her recovery plan, which likely includes a specific set of approaches. For this reason, people cannot judge a program by the therapies applied to them, but they can inquire in advance about what approaches are available as needed. Per NIDA in 2012, common evidence-based modalities include cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), motivational interviewing, contingency management, community reinforcement, family behavior therapy, 12-Step facilitation and the Matrix Model. The program does not need to utilize all, but it would be suspicious if they did not employ any.

  1. Holistic Treatment Options

Holistic treatment is often optional, but patients who participate often reap greater rewards. The services can include basic options like massage, acupressure, hypnosis and yoga, but holistic therapies can also target specific issues like anxiety or lingering withdrawal symptoms. Furthermore, patients with chronic pain issues will likely wish to engage these services, which can include targeted physical therapy, hydrotherapies, hot/cold applications and even local anesthesia injections to reduce pain without narcotics.

  1. Special Treatment Tracks

Not everyone will need a special track or program, but for those who do, it can be a valuable aid in the recovery. The Addiction journal in 2009 said patients have priorities that, when met, significantly influence engagement and treatment outcomes. Examples might include facilities that cater to physically disabled patients (e.g., ramps, wide doorways, special therapies) or provide enhanced privacy and security. For others, it might be a program with tracks designed for particular cultures, faiths, languages, genders or sexual preferences.

  1. Financial Assistance

Cost is a major factor in choosing a program, and most patients receive some type of assistance. Many health insurance plans (including all policies issued through the Affordable Care Act exchanges) provide benefits for addiction and mental health treatment, and facilities themselves often offer financing options and other forms of aid. The 2013 National Survey of Substance Abuse Treatment Services (N-SSATS), a government report on rehab centers in the US, found that 62% of facilities utilized a sliding fee scale that made treatment more affordable for lower-income patients. When evaluating insurance coverage, however, note that benefits often differ by type (full-time inpatient vs. part-time outpatient), location (local vs. out-of-state) and policy-provider relationships (in-network vs. out of network).

Help Finding a Treatment Program

If you need help finding the right treatment program, our admissions coordinators can help. We can discuss treatment methods, facility options and financial aid, and if the prospective patient has health insurance, we can look up the policy and explain its benefits. We are available 24 hours a day so please call our toll-free helpline now.

Are you ready to seek treatment?

If you are ready to beat a Xanax addiction and start a new life in recovery then we can help. We have admission counselors standing by 24 hours a day to take your email, live chat request, or phone call to get you in the addiction treatment center that best fits your unique & specific needs.