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Amenities and Services Offered at Quality Treatment Centers

Although drug rehab facilities are state-regulated entities, they are also private enterprises, and services can vary widely.

As the National Institute on Drug Abuse explains, the traditional approach to drug treatment addresses the physical and psychological dimension of this illness through detox and abstinence maintenance programs, including psychotherapy. For this reason, most treatment centers provide the following core services (either on site or in affiliation with outside providers):

  • Detox
  • Drug counseling, including drug testing
  • Individual psychotherapy
  • Group psychotherapy
  • Group recovery meetings (12-step or secular)
  • Medication-assisted treatment (as necessary)

Assessing the quality of a treatment program is not necessarily straightforward. According to the non-profit drug information resource Helpguide, the quality of a program may relate to its accreditation of the facility and licensing of the staff, treatment outcomes/success rates, and type of aftercare services offered to prevent relapse.

As The Fix discusses, the quality of treatment does not necessarily align with the cost. A rehab researcher who reviewed hundreds of treatment programs over a four-year period found exceptional quality at some low-income, community-based outpatient treatment programs across the US. In many respects, this finding should not come as a surprise. Addiction service providers are subject to the same rigorous academic and licensing requirements irrespective of the tuition they command or level of luxury at the center. Since providers are instrumental to the recovery process, the quality of a rehab center is largely dictated by the level of expertise and compassionate care of the professional staff members.

Spotlight on Effective Treatment Services

The range of programs offered can also bear on the quality of the program. It is well-established in the addiction treatment community that the longer a person stays in treatment, the greater the likelihood of abstinence maintenance. Effective programming helps to provide a multipronged approach that can help to ground recovering substance abusers in the treatment plan overall. Both group sessions and family involvement are recommended components of the core curriculum, but due to budgetary or other restraints, they may not exist in all rehab centers.

According to a research article sponsored by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, psycho-educational groups can effectively complement the services offered in the core treatment process. These groups are designed to teach recovering substance abusers about the causes and effects of drug abuse. This form of treatment is based on the premise “the more you know, the better you do.” Its focus is on teaching recovering persons to recognize internal thought structures that compel drug abuse and gain greater understanding on the available treatment methods. By teaching recovering individuals about treatment solutions, the hope is that even in the unfortunate event that they relapse in the future, they will still be aware of how to get treatment, which can motivate them to actually seek treatment at that time.

As PsychCentral discusses, frequent and positive family involvement can be a helpful addition to a core treatment program, and it is part of the therapy program at many centers. According to PsychCentral, one sign of a quality residential treatment program is its efforts to involve family members in clients’ treatment. Such centers will not only encourage visitation throughout the course of treatment, but also provide educational programs and workshops for the family members. Family therapy, in a group setting in which a psychotherapist leads the participants, is still relatively rare despite its propensity to support the recovery process.

Complementary Services

Rehab centers that advertise themselves as luxurious generally provide clients with a resort-style gym staffed with a physical trainer, outdoor sports courts, manicured gardens, and lush grounds. They usually also offer a host of complementary services (also called integrative services) aimed at treating clients holistically. These services are not intended to replace traditional approaches, but rather complement them. The philosophy behind these services is that while traditional approaches target the substance abuse, complementary treatments are aimed at overall wellness. Improving the health of a client can promote a healthier attitude and overall feeling which, in turn, can support recovery.

Complementary service offerings may vary widely from center to center and may include:

  • Yoga
  • Acupuncture
  • Massage therapy
  • Neurofeedback
  • Reiki
  • Energy psychology
  • Animal-assisted therapy
  • Psychodrama

According to coverage of this topic in Psychology Today, rehab clients should be wary of any claims that complementary therapies are effective in the treatment of substance abuse and addiction. At present, there is insufficient research in the area of the effectiveness of holistic treatment approaches. According to Dr. Kathleen Carroll, a Yale University psychologist, although some of these holistic services may help relieve tension and express emotion, research has shown that the expression of emotion is not sufficient to improve addiction or mood disorders, such as depression.

Some rehab centers believe that even if holistic therapies do not directly address addiction, they can be useful in attracting people to programs and keeping them in treatment. Further, holistic treatments may help clients to be more receptive to treatment. In short, even if complementary treatments never prove to be directly effective, they have value and are a desirable part of the rehab process when offered.

Nutritional Support

Nutrition and recovery are deeply intertwined. Research shows that healthy eating can directly help the recovery process. A rehab program that offers luxury services will no doubt offer premium daily meals and be staffed with a chef and kitchen staff members. Offering this service has a twofold benefit. First, healthy meals can help to reinvigorate the body with the nutrients lost during drug abuse. The effects can also be long-term. As prolonged drug abuse often damages organs, supplying the body with nutrients can aid organ repair. Secondly, following a routine meal schedule can help to set a precedent for good eating patterns after treatment.

Further, research shows that good nutrition can serve as a relapse prevention tool. Research shows that recovering addicts who have poor dietary habits are more likely to relapse. Part of the reason is that poor eating often reflects an overview poor quality of life and lifestyle. In addition to providing regularly scheduled healthy meals, some cutting-edge rehab programs may also go so far as to provide nutritional education. Research shows that nutrition education can increase the likelihood of success in treatment.

Nutrition and recovery are deeply intertwined. Research shows that healthy eating can directly help the recovery process. A rehab program that offers luxury services will no doubt offer premium daily meals and be staffed with a chef and kitchen staff members. Offering this service has a twofold benefit. First, healthy meals can help to reinvigorate the body with the nutrients lost during drug abuse. The effects can also be long-term. As prolonged drug abuse often damages organs, supplying the body with nutrients can aid organ repair. Secondly, following a routine meal schedule can help to set a precedent for good eating patterns after treatment.

Further, research shows that good nutrition can serve as a relapse prevention tool. Research shows that recovering addicts who have poor dietary habits are more likely to relapse. Part of the reason is that poor eating often reflects an overview poor quality of life and lifestyle. In addition to providing regularly scheduled healthy meals, some cutting-edge rehab programs may also go so far as to provide nutritional education. Research shows that nutrition education can increase the likelihood of success in treatment.

An Effective Aftercare Plan

A hallmark of a quality drug treatment program – irrespective of the cost – is providing clients with an effective aftercare plan. The high relapse rate post-recovery is one of the most compelling reasons for a drug rehab to ensure that a person being discharged has an effective aftercare plan in place. As the National Institute on Drug Abuse has found, the relapse rate post-recovery is 40-60 percent, which is similar to the relapse rate for other chronic diseases, such as diabetes, asthma, and hypertension.

The necessity of an aftercare program cannot be overemphasized. The completion of a rehab program is a major accomplishment, and all graduates will require ongoing support to maintain abstinence. Many addiction specialists agree that it is important to remain in an aftercare program for at least six months, which could include remaining enrolled in an outpatient program.

Additional forms of aftercare include:

  • Residence in a sober living home
  • Maintaining regular individual counseling sessions
  • Having scheduled meetings with a drug counselor
  • Joining self-directed group recovery groups such as NA

Whereas drug treatment programs provide a structured treatment schedule, aftercare is composed more of a patchwork of supportive services. For some, attending recovery meetings and having a sponsor are lifelong commitments. Many people who have years of recovery to their credit point to the ongoing positive influence of group recovery meetings.

Advanced Recovery Solutions is dedicated to providing recovering individuals and their family members with information about the causes of addiction and the treatment options available. Each rehab center in our network is fully licensed, staffed with addiction specialists, and provides expert and compassionate care.

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