Drug Rehab Information
What is Drug Rehab?
Drug rehabilitation, sometimes referred to as drug rehab, is a general term used to describe treatment programs designed to help individuals overcome drug addiction. The best drug rehabs successfully address addiction to many substances, including prescription medications (such as Vicodin or OxyContin) and recreational drugs (such as cocaine, heroin, or methamphetamines).
Drug addiction can destroy families and result in serious social, financial, legal, and physical consequences. Drug rehabilitation can help stop the damaging cycle of addiction.
The most effective drug rehabilitation programs are those that are comprehensive in nature and address the multiple needs of addicts, not just the drug abuse. There are several key components to top drug rehabilitation programs:
- Medically assisted detoxification is typically the first and most crucial step in drug rehabilitation. Once a patient is physically stable, the true rehabilitation process begins.
- Identification and treatment of co-occurring disorders allows professionals to treat the whole patient rather than just the drug addiction.
- Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) helps uncover and analyze core negative thought patterns that may lead to abuse.
- Family involvement provides a foundation of support to ensure long-term success.
Overview of drug rehabilitation
There are many different approaches to drug rehabilitation, including inpatient programs, outpatient programs, 12-step programs, sober houses, and more, but they all share a common theme—it is imperative to address both the physical and the psychological addictions associated with drug abuse. It can take weeks, months, or even years to recover from drug addiction. Drug rehabilitation helps to unravel the complicated and vicious cycles related to abuse so that addicts can overcome physical addiction and heal the compulsive patterns that drive their behavior.
The Drug Epidemic in America
From abuse of prescription medications to experimentation with street drugs, drug use continues to rise across the nation. In fact, according to statistics gathered by the National Criminal Justice Reference Service, nearly 13 million Americans – accounting for roughly six percent of the US population – have used illegal drugs within the last month alone.
In contrast to popular depictions of drug addiction that focus on isolated populations, the following facts underscore the reality of the drug pandemic across the country currently reaching across age, gender and social boundaries.
- According to The National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), the number of people using heroin within the previous 12 months climbed more than 600,000 in 2009 alone.
- In 2009, more than 10 million residents of the US drove a vehicle while under the influence of illegal drugs, according to data by the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH).
- An excess of 615,000 Americans engaged in nonmedical use of the powerful opiate OxyContin during 2006, based on statistics provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Even more alarmingly, nearly 100 percent of those who tried OxyContin illicitly for the first time had already engaged in abuse of at least one other drug.
- The United States National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) reported a threefold increase in methadone deaths across the nation in just the five years spanning 1999 and 2004.
- In 2007, an excess of 730,000 Americans had engaged in meth use within the 30 days, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse.
Finding Rehab Programs
Types of top drug rehab facilities
Drug rehab facilities come in a variety of forms and offer a diverse mix of services, treatment methods, philosophies, specialties and amenities. Drug rehab facilities are typically classified as either short-term residential, long-term residential or outpatient. In addition, some facilities specialize in medically assisted detoxification, offering their services in an inpatient or outpatient basis.
Locating drug treatment programs
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) maintains a an updated online directory of licensed drug rehab facilities, as well as a separate list of programs and physicians authorized to treat opioid withdrawal with buprenorphine. Click here to view programs by state and zip code. Additionally, the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry offers an online physician-locator tool at www.aaap.org.
Substance Abuse Treatment Facility Locator
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), a branch of the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services, maintains an updated list of drug rehabilitation centers. The Substance Abuse Treatment Facility Locator lists only private and public facilities that are “licensed, certified, or otherwise approved for inclusion by their state substance abuse agency.”
Locator listings include (but are not limited to) treatment programs for cocaine, alcohol and heroin addiction, and consist of programs for adolescents and adults. Most of the resources listed are able to treat a wide variety of substance abuse disorders, although some specialize in the treatment of specific substance addictions. For those suffering from heroin or other opioid addiction, SAMHSA offers a separate locator tool that lists physicians and treatment programs authorized to prescribe buprenorphine (trade names include Suboxone and Subutex), a controlled substance used to treat physical dependence and address opioid-withdrawal symptoms.
Each month new facilities are added based on facility responses to SAMHSA’s National Survey of Substance Abuse Treatment Services. (The website’s design may look dated, but the content is not.) While the facilities listed in the Substance Abuse Treatment Facility Locator meet certain regulatory criteria, SAMHSA makes clear that inclusion is not an endorsement or referral. The locator is intended for informational purposes only. With thousands of drug rehabilitation centers in operation, we suggest using the locator as an early-stage filtering device to collect basic information with which to conduct further research into a facility or program. The surest way to find out if a treatment center is the right fit for you or your loved one is to talk directly with a representative from the facility.
Program length and aftercare
A large body of research points to a strong connection between length of treatment and strength of recovery. Because addiction is a chronic illness, short-term treatment is typically insufficient. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, relapse rates for drug addiction mirror those of other chronic diseases (such as diabetes and asthma). Studies show that long-term, intensive treatment followed by regular monitoring is the surest path to a sustainable recovery from drug or alcohol addiction. So, when comparing programs, pay close attention to their respective aftercare services. Look for comprehensiveness and cost. (Many facilities offer free continuing care to those who successfully complete residential treatment.)
Finding the right fit
The best drug rehab facilities in the world provide a combination of therapies, medications and ancillary services to meet an individual’s unique needs and circumstances. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to treatment, nor is there one drug rehab facility that will work for everyone. To make sure that a facility meets your particular needs—or your loved one’s—we strongly suggest calling prospective facilities directly, gathering information and carefully weighing each program. For help evaluating drug rehab facilities, we invite you to download our free (no opt-in required) rehab comparison guide. Elements to consider include:
- Aftercare/continuing care services
- Degree of treatment personalization
- Treatment philosophy (12-step? Other?)
- Extent of family and support system involvement
- Facility location and amenities
- Availability of onsite detoxification (if necessary)
- Ancillary services (legal assistance, training, etc.)
- Staff-to-client ratio / amount of individual attention
- Ability to treat co-occurring disorders (dual diagnosis)
Choosing a Rehab Center
Choosing an addiction treatment center is an important decision that requires thought, time and care. No two addictions are alike, and there is no one-size-fits-all program or treatment philosophy. It’s essential to take the time to identify your key needs and specific challenges and carefully screen prospective facilities before making a decision.
Evaluating drug rehabs: Key criteria
There are many ways to evaluate a treatment facility. To make things simpler, we’ve singled out the following areas:
Onsite detox – In cases of severe physical dependence, individuals may need to start the rehabilitation process with a period (indefinite in certain cases of opiate dependence) of medically assisted detoxification. This is a delicate process that should, for the sake of the individual’s comfort and safety, be done onsite in an inpatient drug rehab facility.
Personalized care – No two people are alike, and the same goes for addiction. It’s not surprising, then, that there is no silver bullet treatment protocol. What is highly efficacious for one person may prove useless for another, so it’s essential for drug rehab programs to have the necessary resources available to offer tailored treatment programs that can meet the needs and unique circumstances of each individual.
Individual attention – One of the most potent treatments of addiction is what’s known as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), a form of one-on-one talk therapy that explores negative thought processes and how they drive destructive behavior. To fully reap the benefits of this proven treatment method, patients must be given a significant amount of individual attention. When comparing drug rehabs, look for information about one-on-one care and ask, if the information is not readily available, how many private therapy sessions the facility offers clients each week.
Family involvement – All too often, drug rehabs sequester their clients from their families and key supporters, even leaving referring professionals, who typically have valuable insight into their patients’ condition, in the dark. The best drug rehabs, on the other hand, will marshal every resource at their disposal, integrating family members, close friends, referring professionals and mentors into the intake, treatment and discharge processes.
Relapse prevention/aftercare – Inpatient drug rehab is but the first stage of recovery from addiction, and recovery, in turn, lasts a lifetime. As with other chronic diseases, the threat of relapse is a perennial concern for anyone with a history of drug or alcohol addiction. When comparing drug rehabs, be sure to pay close attention to relapse prevention and continuing care services.
Other drug rehab topics:
The Residential Drug Treatment Advantage
Drug treatment falls into two general categories – inpatient residential programs that provide intensive, holistic care and outpatient programs that provide drug recovery support for a dedicated number of hours per week. While outpatient programs can provide a stepping stone to recovery for those who have developed drug dependencies, individuals with severe, long-term or recurrent drug addictions generally require a residential treatment stay in order to achieve sobriety. Residential drug treatment programs provide the following advantages to their clients:
Extended Sober Living Environment
Physical and Psychological Diagnostic Testing
Inpatient Detoxification Process
Life Skills Training
Peer Support and Camaraderie
Pathways to Physical Healing
12-Step Program Participation
Transitional Guidance and Follow-up Programs
The Role of Dual Diagnosis in Drug Treatment
Residential drug treatment programs also offer mental health support for those who may endure psychological struggles. Often fueling drug use through self-medication, dual diagnosis conditions can also arise as the result of drug abuse. Ranging from schizophrenia to mood, personality and dissociative disorders, dual diagnosis cases can be effectively treated at inpatient facilities using a combination of medication and psychotherapy. Treatment of both the drug addiction and the coinciding mental health condition occur simultaneously, for maximum effect.
Drug Rehab at Alta Mira
Medically assisted detoxification
At Alta Mira, we contract with licensed medical providers to provide the most current and effective medical and clinical support for our clients that experience withdrawal symptoms caused from physical and psychological dependence. We take withdrawal seriously and make every effort to reduce the pain and discomfort that can follow the decision to get sober.
Dual diagnosis treatment
People who are addicted to drugs and alcohol often suffer from other physical and mental health issues that should be addressed concurrently. The diagnosis and treatment of co-occurring disorder is particularly important because the presence of unresolved problems may stand in the way of effective addiction treatment and/or increase the likelihood of subsequent relapse.
This treatment method that gives clients the ability to identify, avoid and handle situations in which they are likely to relapse. This type of therapy helps clients develop healthy behaviors and safe coping strategies. Most importantly, cognitive-behavioral therapy involves identifying negative core beliefs about one. Rehab patients often use drugs and alcohol to lessen or numb the pain caused by such negative thoughts. Addressing these thoughts and the pain they cause is an integral part of reducing the underlying ‘need’ for the substance and the fleeting relief it provides.
Family involvement and support-group involvement
Drug addictions don’t exist in a vacuum, which is why family and support-group involvement is one of the most important factors in a successful treatment experience and long-term recovery. With the client’s permission, we integrate family members, therapists and close friends into our treatment and discharge plans.
Lifetime continuing care
We make a lifetime commitment to our clients regardless of how long they are in residence at Alta Mira. Our lifetime continuing care includes two-day tune-ups every three months, monthly follow-up phone calls for as long as clients like, and membership in the Alta Mira Alumni Group, which meets monthly at our Sausalito location.
Contact Alta Mira today
If you or someone you care about suffers from drug addiction, please contact us to learn more about our drug rehab services. Please call our admissions department at 866-922-1350 to set up a free consultation.