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Residential Treatment

A reputable residential treatment program offers an array of services designed to treat the entire person, not just the addiction itself. Yet, so many people do not get the opportunity to receive this kind of treatment. 

In fact, 8.5 percent of the U.S. population or 22.5 million people ages 12 and over, needed treatment for drug or alcohol abuse in 2014. Of those people, about 4.2 million or 18.5 percent received any kind of treatment that same year, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).  

Even a smaller amount of those folks receive specialized treatment, programs that feature evidence-based services that have a higher success rate in helping clients achieve sobriety. 

Read on to learn more about residential treatment and the array of services a reputable program offers.

What is Residential Treatment

Residential treatment for substance abuse began to emerge in the late 1950s. The most popular residential program is referred to as the therapeutic community (TC) model. The first TC was established in 1958, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA).

Historically, TCs differed from standard drug treatment programs in that they provided alternatives to medically-oriented courses. These programs have since evolved in response to research that shows the efficacy of medication-based treatment. They also have grown to treat the entire individual, not just the addiction itself. 

A growing number of TCs now take a comprehensive approach to recovery by addressing participants’ other health issues in addition to their [substance use disorders], incorporating comprehensive medical treatment and supporting participants receiving medications for addiction treatment or for other psychiatric disorders, states NIDA.

Residential programs typically treat people with severe addictions. They were developed to accommodate clients so they can live at the facility where they will also receive therapy and care. Usually, these programs involve prolonged stays between six to 12 months and focus on the resocialization of the individual. The residential treatment community — from fellow residents to staff members — are also a part of the recovery process. 

The treatment featured in a residential program is described as highly structured, even confrontational. In a residential program, addiction is viewed in the context of a client’s social and psychological deficits, and the focus of treatment is on clients developing personal accountability and responsibility, states NIDA. They are also provided education and tools that teach them how to live productive lives out in society.

They, too, have evolved to include shorter stints and offer outpatient treatment options where clients can receive care and live independently. 

The Goal of Drug Treatment

Essentially, the primary goal of effective treatment is to help people accomplish the following: 

  • Stop using drugs
  • Remain drug-free
  • Be productive in family and work environments and society

Principles of Effective Treatment

NIDA outlines a set of key principles that form the basis of any reputable drug treatment program, particularly residential options that provide an array of comprehensive services. 

These are the principles of an effective treatment program: 

  • Addiction is a complex but treatable disease that affects brain function and behavior.
  • No single treatment is right for everyone.
  • People need to have quick access to treatment.
  • Effective treatment addresses all of the patient’s needs, not just his or her drug use.
  • Staying in treatment long enough is critical.
  • Counseling and other behavioral therapies are the most commonly used forms of treatment.
  • Medications are often an important part of treatment, especially when combined with behavioral therapies.
  • Treatment plans must be reviewed often and modified to fit the patient’s changing needs.
  • Treatment should address other possible mental disorders.
  • Medically assisted detoxification is only the first stage of treatment.
  • Treatment doesn’t need to be voluntary to be effective.
  • Drug use during treatment must be monitored continuously.
  • Treatment programs should test patients for HIV/AIDS, hepatitis B and C, tuberculosis, and other infectious diseases as well as teach them about steps they can take to reduce their risk of these illnesses.

What is Offered in Residential Treatment

Residential treatment is a critical component of the continuum of care. When a patient remains in a residential program 90 days or longer, they are more effective in their treatment outcome. 

A residential program takes into account the type and severity of your addiction(s) and specific needs. From there you are administered a specific program that meets those requirements. Residential treatment also takes into account whether you have a co-occurring mental health issue, have a pre-existing health condition, or abuse more than one substance (polysubstance abuse). 

There are different services offered in treatment settings, many of which have been proven to be successful. Those options include: 

  • Medication
  • Behavioral counseling
  • Evaluation/treatment for co-occurring mental health issues (anxiety, depression, etc.)
  • Medical devices/applications to treat withdrawal symptoms or deliver skills training
  • Long-term follow-up to prevent relapse

Why Detoxification Is Not Enough

Addiction is defined as a chronic, relapsing disorder where someone engages in compulsive drug seeking and use in the face of adverse consequences. A primary affliction of addiction is the way the invasive substance rewires the brain’s circuitry, where the reward, stress, and self-control areas are profoundly impacted. This is especially true with opioid addiction, which is notorious for the way it completely hijacks the brain, particularly its pleasure center.

The fact is detoxification is only one step in the process, and patients who do not receive any more treatment after detox usually resume their substance abuse. 

How Professional Treatment Can Help You  

If you have an addiction, an addiction with a co-occurring mental health condition or you abuse multiple substances; a professional residential treatment program works to address the complexities of those particular hardships. 

The process starts with medical detoxification, where the substance is removed from your body, and withdrawal symptoms are treated and alleviated by medical staff. You are also provided round-the-clock care, and any other health conditions you may have are also addressed. 

Once you have undergone detox, you can receive therapy and counseling in residential or outpatient treatment, where the psychological aspect of your addiction is addressed. In addition to medications, you are provided access to behavioral counseling and alternative therapies along with standard, evidence-based care.  

The treatment modalities offered in treatment include:

  • CBT
  • DBT
  • Motivational Interviewing
  • Group and Individual Therapy

Get Help Today

Residential treatment is critical in combating the most severe, all-encompassing substance addictions. Let us help you locate a program that can free you from this crippling state.

Sources

National Institute on Drug Abuse. (n.d.). Treatment Approaches for Drug Addiction. Retrieved from https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/treatment-approaches-drug-addiction

National Institute on Drug Abuse. (n.d.). What Are Therapeutic Communities? Retrieved from https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/research-reports/therapeutic-communities/what-are-therapeutic-communities

National Institute on Drug Abuse. (n.d.). Types of Treatment Programs. Retrieved from https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/principles-drug-addiction-treatment-research-based-guide-third-edition/drug-addiction-treatment-in-united-states/types-treatment-programs

National Institute on Drug Abuse. (n.d.). 7: Duration of treatment. Retrieved from https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/teaching-packets/understanding-drug-abuse-addiction/section-iii/6-duration-treatment

Rodolico, J. (2016, January 11). Anatomy Of Addiction: How Heroin And Opioids Hijack The Brain. Retrieved from https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2016/01/11/462390288/anatomy-of-addiction-how-heroin-and-opioids-hijack-the-brain

What are the ASAM Levels of Care? (2018, July 20). Retrieved from https://www.asamcontinuum.org/knowledgebase/what-are-the-asam-levels-of-care/

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