Luxury Addiction Treatment Isn’t Just About Thread Count

Are luxury addiction treatment programs worth it? Many people find themselves asking this question when they are considering rehab. While luxury addiction treatment is often misunderstood as simply offering creature comforts, they can provide increased opportunities for evidence-based, personalized, and comprehensive treatment and serene, holistic care. Finding out more about these treatment options can help you connect to the right program to start your journey toward recovery.

It took five years for Robert to admit that he had developed an addiction to alcohol. His drinking, which had once been merely social, escalated following the death of his wife, slowly coming to take center stage in his life. He had continued to deny his alcoholism as his routine began to revolve around his next drink, even as the withdrawal tremors started in the mornings and his children began expressing concern about his alcohol consumption. Addiction, after all, is powerful. The impetus for denial is overwhelming, and can easily blind you to the reality of your own life in order to perpetuate itself.

Nothing in particular happened to break through Robert’s denial. There was no grand event, no obvious trigger. Rather, it was a growing fear of what alcohol was doing to him, a fear that one day became more powerful than his denial. The admission of his addiction, he believed, would open up a clear path to recovery. He would go to rehab, get clean, and be okay.

Deciding where to go to rehab, however, proved to be a more difficult project than he realized. “There were so many options, I didn’t know where to start,” he remembers. “This was going to be one of the most important decisions of my life—maybe a decision that would save my life. I was terrified of getting it wrong.” One option that sounded both particularly appealing—yet potentially unnecessary—was luxury addiction treatment. “I have to admit I was thinking of the creature comforts. To be honest, luxury addiction treatment programs just sounded nicer, ” he says. “But at the same time, I had to ask myself, was it really necessary? Was I going to be paying a premium for better accommodations and more pleasant surroundings but receiving the same care I could have gotten elsewhere for less?”

Choosing an addiction treatment program can be a complicated process due to both the plethora of choices and the high stakes of your decision. For many, the concept of luxury addiction treatment can be particularly confusing; are these programs truly superior to other treatment facilities? Are you getting more than frivolous extras? Exploring the answer to this question is critical when selecting the best rehab program for your needs. After all, addiction treatment is rarely a small investment. It’s essential to be smart about where you begin your recovery journey.

Opportunities for Evidence-Based Treatment


Addiction has long been considered a particularly difficult disorder to treat. Today we understand that this difficulty is not due to the innate characteristics of people struggling with addiction, but due to the profound brain changes spurred and perpetuated by long-term exposure to drugs of abuse. With this new knowledge, addiction treatment programs are slowly beginning to reorient themselves toward a medical approach to substance use disorders using evidence-based treatments, facilitating better and more durable outcomes.

Unfortunately, most addiction treatment programs do not yet provide evidence-based care; in fact, it remains rare. According to a report published by the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University, “Of those who […] receive treatment, few receive anything that approximates evidence-based care. Only a small fraction of individuals receive interventions or treatment consistent with scientific knowledge about what works.” This lack of appropriate care arises from a variety of complex reasons, including lack of resources and outdated understandings of the nature of addiction. As the authors note:

[M]ost medical professionals who should be providing addiction treatment are not sufficiently trained to diagnose or treat the disease, and most of those providing addiction care are not medical professionals and are not equipped with the knowledge, skills, or credentials necessary to provide the full range of effective treatment.

Indeed, Anne M. Fletcher, author of Inside Rehab, says, “Of the many thousands of treatment programs out there, most use exactly the same kind of treatment you would have received in 1950, not modern scientific approaches.”

One of the issues is often that staffing an addiction treatment program with professionals who have the expertise to treat addiction from an evidence-based, medical perspective is costly. High-quality luxury addiction treatment programs, however, have the resources necessary to make this investment in their staff, hiring psychiatrists who specialize in addiction medicine and master’s- and doctoral-level therapists with expertise in medical addiction treatment. Due to the important role co-occurring mental health disorders and physical medical concerns play in addiction, staff training and experience also include addressing the points of connection between these conditions and addiction in order to provide complete care. As such, these programs can deliver the kind and quality of care that has been proven to address the roots of addiction and foster lasting recovery.

The Value of Personalized Comprehensive Treatment


While evidence-based care is paramount, it does not simply describe a single type of treatment. Rather, research shows that treatment must be tailored to the personal needs of each client in order to achieve the best treatment outcomes. As the National Institute on Drug Abuse explains:

No single treatment is appropriate for everyone. Treatment varies depending on the type of drug and the characteristics of the patients. Matching treatment settings, interventions, and services to an individual’s particular problems and needs is critical for his or her ultimate success in returning to productive functioning in the family, workplace, and society.

Additionally, the best addiction treatment programs do not simply focus on drug or alcohol abuse. Rather, they view each client from a holistic perspective, taking into account their personality, goals, sociocultural factors, and any comorbid conditions when designing and delivering treatment. It is now widely acknowledged that this comprehensive approach to recovery is necessary not just to create lasting sobriety, but to truly enhance overall functioning and quality of life.

Luxury addiction treatment programs typically prioritize a personalized, comprehensive framework. In part, this means having a full range of resources available to guide you through the process of early recovery, from medically supervised detox, to advanced diagnostic services, to treatment itself. It also means that you participate in multidimensional therapies designed for your unique needs, including pharmacological therapies, individual and group psychotherapy, and holistic and experiential therapies. In the presence of co-occurring disorders, true dual diagnosis treatment must be provided to facilitate holistic healing and lasting relapse prevention. This broad spectrum of care ensures that you receive the medical, psychological, behavioral, and social supports to disrupt destructive patterns and replace them with healthy alternatives while simultaneously creating a transformative treatment experience that goes beyond your addiction to nurture self-growth, discovery, and empowerment. The duration of this treatment is guided by your personal needs rather than arbitrary timelines, optimizing your chances of successful recovery.

Another area where a luxury addiction treatment program will often stand out is the way that the program as a whole can be personalized. Part of the appeal of these programs is the high level of individualized attention they provide and this goes beyond formal treatment. For example, programs with specialized executive services may accommodate your professional activities if you are not able to completely step away during your time in treatment. If you are a high-level athlete who wants to maintain a training program while in care, you may be able to invite a trainer in for regular sessions. Some luxury addiction treatment programs even allow people to bring their pets due to the important emotional support and stability they can provide during the recovery process. These personal touches can be significant in removing barriers to treatment and ensuring you have everything you need to thrive as you begin your healing journey.

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The Healing Power of Serene and Holistic Care


Often, the things that potential clients initially find appealing about luxury addiction treatment programs include the creature comforts and calm, beautiful settings they provide. While these may appear to be extravagant, particularly in light of the serious medical concerns you are dealing with, such features can be meaningful parts of the recovery process. Rather than being separate from the treatment experience, they are inherent features of it; they are humanizing.

The busy, crowded, and institutional settings of some addiction treatment programs can be uninviting and overwhelming, making it difficult for you to relax and feel at home. When part of your treatment process depends on feeling comfortable enough to explore your innermost self, not feeling at home can be a barrier to recovery. It’s important to feel that you belong, both within the physical and social environment of the treatment program, in order to open up the emotional space necessary for healing to take root. At the same time, chaotic environments and a lack of privacy can introduce unnecessary stressors, interfering with the serenity needed to focus on your recovery and potentially disrupting your ability to participate in treatment in a meaningful way. A facility that prioritizes your privacy, offers calming spaces for relaxation, and maintains an intimate program size helps fortify the healing process.

Luxury addiction treatment programs also tend to recognize that taking a truly holistic approach to recovery must extend to the entire treatment experience. As such, they may provide services and amenities designed to nourish your mind, body, and spirit throughout your time in care. This may include healthy gourmet meals prepared by professional chefs, physical fitness activities, and access to beautiful natural environments, all of which provide great benefits for the recovery process—not only because they help to support a healthy lifestyle, but because they remind you of the joys and possibilities of life without substance abuse.

Finding Out More About Luxury Addiction Treatment


If you think a luxury addiction treatment program might be right for you, it’s important to examine the features of the specific program you are considering to make sure they offer all of the benefits associated with these treatment settings. If you have any questions about addiction treatment in general or luxury programs specifically, we are always happy to speak with you and provide any guidance you may need. We believe that everyone deserves the best possible care for their unique needs and that finding the right match will be a critical piece of your recovery. As such, we are committed to helping people connect to the treatment they need, regardless of whether or not Alta Mira ends up being the right place for them. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us.

Alta Mira offers comprehensive treatment for people struggling with drug and alcohol abuse as well as co-occurring mental health disorders and process addictions. Contact us to learn more about our renowned Bay Area program and how we can help you or your loved one start the journey toward lasting recovery.