There are many levels of care for addiction treatment including one-on-one therapy, outpatient, and day treatment, faith based treatment and residential treatment. All can be effective in treating and managing the chronic progressive relapsing brain disease of addiction. In the addiction recovery field, there are literally thousands of residential treatment centers geared towards all kinds of addictions and compulsions to help f people get their lives back on track. According to Faces and Voices of Recovery, 23 million people are in recovery, and 22 million are still active substance users.
Are Resident Treatment Centers More Effective That Out Patient?
Residential treatment has been long been considered the most effective level of care for addiction and co-occurring disorders because of the length of stay, usually ranging from 30 days up to a year or more (in long-term residential settings). However, the Surgeon General's Report on Addiction (Nov 2016) compiled by 25 years of research) reports that there are many paths to recovery and equally good results can be achieved with intensive out patient treatment, medically assisted treatment and many other programs.
Length Of Stay Means Residential Treatment Is Just Stage One
Residential treatment centers generally have the limitation of a 30-day stay as mandated by many insurance companies. Experts say that is not enough time to heal brain function and behavior that has been affected by substance use. Further, not everyone has insurance or can afford a residential stay. And even more important to note, there are not enough beds to accommodate everyone who wants to go away for intensive supervised treatment.
Environment Is Crucial
Those with Substance Use Disorder (SUD) or Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD) need safe, supportive environments with trained therapists and counselors, many of whom are in recovery themselves, which gives residential facilities an advantage in relating with the individuals they treat. The advantage of a safe and supervised environment in a residential setting is that the patients are not free to resume their addictive behavior after the session has ended for the day. By the same token, while the controlled environment of a residential facility serves to help maintain sobriety, the same risks of relapse occur when inpatient treatment has been completed and the patient returns home. More care is needed for years and even a lifetime to come.
Over the years, different kinds of residential treatment centers have emerged to cater to the changing needs of the addicted population. In addition to short term residential and long term residential treatment, there are treatment centers geared toward specific groups of people and people who do not respond well to the 12-step program or who would like to try something different. Some of the more popular residential treatment models that have emerged over the past 10 years include gender specific treatment, gay/lesbian treatment, and adolescent treatment. Along with these more specific residential treatment models, there has been an emergence of alternative treatment methodologies like holistic treatment and faith-based treatment which offer alternatives to 12-step recovery.
Finding Residential Treatment
In the search for a residential treatment center, it is important to explore what each program has to offer and ask the right questions to determine whether it will be most effective for the individual addict. Just because a residential treatment center is more specialized does not necessarily mean higher quality or better treatment outcomes. In the end, the rate of success comes down to the resolve of the addict or alcoholic and willingness to make changes in thinking and lifestyle and be prepared to stick to a life-time of working at it.
And remember, residential treatment is only one option. There are many other choices, and not everyone needs to go away. So be sure to research resources in your area. there's hope for all who receive some kind of treatment.