What to Look for in a Drug Rehab Center

Drug addiction is a huge problem in Hawaii, one that just seems to get worse and worse with every passing year. This common affliction has now been recognized as a more than a brain disease, and like any form of complex illness demands and deserves an more then one psychological form of treatment.

Unfortunately for individuals suffering with drug addition and their loved ones, not all drug rehab centers are created equal, and that can present some real problems for those about to enter treatment. Convincing an addicted loved one to go into drug rehab or realizing that you need help yourself is no easy task, but what happens next will make an even bigger difference.

If you want to finally put your drug addiction in the rear view mirror you will need to be a smart shopper, sorting through the list of treatment options and choosing a drug rehab program you can trust. Since choosing a drug rehab is not something most people do every day, here are some key things you should look for.

Experienced Medical Providers

Despite what many people still think, drug addiction is not a moral failing, and it will take much more than willpower to break free of a physical and mental dependency. Modern science and the medical community have recognized substance use disorder as a comprehensive illness, and like any disease it responses best to physical, psychological, and lifestyle changes during treatment.

As a result the best drug rehab centers will have experienced medical support to keep their clients safe and comfortable as their bodies begin to heal. They will employ experienced doctors, nurses and technicians, carefully monitoring patients as they detox and preparing them for the next steps on their journeys to recovery.

You should always insist on this high level of medical care in any drug rehab center you are considering for yourself or a loved one. If your loved one were having a heart attack, you would not go to a hospital that did not have a doctor – you would expect an entire team of clinicians to be at your beck and call. Drug addiction is no different, and you have the right to demand medical support for this very serious type of illness.

Nutritional Support

Drug addiction is a terrible illness, and it takes a toll on every aspect of a person’s life. From their ability to hold a job and earn a living to the relationships they enjoy (or do not) with their friends and relatives, no aspect of life is unaffected.

In addition to those other challenges substance abusers often face significant nutritional challenges as they go into rehab. Nutritional deficiencies are common among long term drug users, and that is why nutritional support can be so vital to success.

Some drug rehab centers provide nutritional support with nutritional recommendations and carefully crafted supplementation regiments. Other residential facilities go further, hiring onsite chefs and buying fresh food from local farmers. No matter which approach is chosen, providing proper nutrition will play a vital role in the healing that is so important for recovering drug users.

Compassionate Counselors

The quality of counseling is another critical thing to look for in a drug rehab center. It is not enough for drug and alcohol counselors to be experience and good at their jobs from a technical standpoint; the most gifted drug rehab workers respect the human element, seeing their charges not as numbers of statistics but as human beings who are suffering from a terrible illness.

It is not always easy to gauge the compassion of the counselors, but talking to past patients and their families can give you some insight into what the center is like and how effective their programs really are. The more you know, the better you will feel about trusting your loved one, or yourself, to a chosen drug rehab center.

A Range of Treatment Options

No one takes their first drink thinking they will soon become an alcoholic, and no one fills a prescription believing that a crippling dependency will soon develop. All forms of addiction are inadvertent, and no two roads to dependency are ever the same.

Just as every drug user and alcoholic is an individual, so too is the best way forward. No two forms of alcohol and drug rehab will work for everyone, and that is why it is so important to work with a treatment center that customizes their programs to the needs of every client.

The best drug rehab centers offer treatment that is tailored to the patient, giving addicted individuals the flexibility they need to find a way back safely to sobriety. They may also offer various lengths of treatment, including short stays of 30 days and longer ones of 60 or 90 day duration, and up to several years in some cases. It is important to ask about all of the treatment options offered before choosing one alcohol or drug rehab over another.

Strong After Care and Follow Up Services

For those who have never been impacted by drug addiction, the end of rehab may seem like the end of the road, but that is not the case. For those whose lives have been touched by addiction, the conclusion of formal drug rehab is just the latest step on a long journey, one that does not stop with a return back to the same lifestyle they lived before.

The struggle to overcome addiction and stay clean is a lifelong one, and that is why the best drug rehab centers offer a variety of after care and follow up services. They may connect recovering individuals with local 12-step programs and support groups in their community, helping them continue the work they started within the facility. They may form alumni associations in which former clients learn from, and lean on, one another. They may contact their former patients to see how they are doing.

All of those things, taken together, can be remarkably effective at preventing relapse and supporting recovery. You should always insist on these after care and supportive services as you search for the best and most effective drug rehab.

Shopping for a drug rehab center is not something most people do every day, and a lucky percentage of people will never have to do it. Hopefully you will never face such challenges for yourself or a loved one, but if you do find yourself in need of drug rehab, knowing what to look for will be vitally important. The more you know about drug rehabs and how they work, the easier it will be to make a smart choice for yourself or someone you love.

By Bonnie Conrad

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Glen Carner

Glen Carner