Making the decision to get treatment for substance use is difficult enough already. Then I have to determine which kind of treatment. Residential treatment is something people keep talking about, where I would go to a facility and stay there. I am not sure if it is like a strange type of vacation or more like a hospital stay. But why do I need a residential treatment program?
Residential facilities vary, but many are designed to be comfortable living spaces while we heal, affording many of the comforts of home. There is a reason that residential treatment programs are still the most common type of program for the treatment of substance use: they work. Residential treatment can be the safest and most efficient type of treatment, particularly when we choose the facility that is best for us. Here are some reasons why residential treatment is important:
• Safety – during detoxification, our bodies can go through a lot. Around the clock medical supervision is necessary for safety purposes. Access to 24-hour medical care is also helpful, particularly in cases of Medically Assisted Treatment, or MAT, for the detoxification from opioids and other powerful drugs.
Safety is a continued consideration as physically and emotionally our bodies swing through emotional and physical changes. For example, if depression hits, we have access to 24-hour medical and emotional care to keep us safe. During an exercise session, when our bodies are not used to moving, if we pull something, there is access to care on-site to help us recover. Because treatment for substance use is a condition that impacts us mentally, physically, and emotionally, it is ideal to start recovery at a facility that has round-the-clock care for each facet of our healing.
• Success – Residential facilities produce higher success rates in recovery than non-residential treatments. The time we put into treatment, the intensity of being pulled out of our comfort zone, and the focus that we are able to achieve without the distractions of our everyday life all add up to a program that will help us to be more successful in recovery. And why would we even attempt something without planning for success?
• Changing Habits – Because recovery is all about change, that can be easier to do when we have a change of scenery, too. We are away from the temptations and triggers of substance use, which helps support us at the beginning of our recovery journey when we are raw and learning new habits. Residential treatment also gives us time in a different environment to make and build new habits that we can then take back home with us when we are ready.
Being surrounded by others who are also changing habits as well as medical and other trained professionals helps us to change our habits, too. We have an entire support group built-in made up entirely of people who want us to succeed. There are other people who are going through the same types of things as we are. If we are to change our habits, having the appropriate support around us 24 hours a day, seven days a week as we are starting out is an ideal scenario.
• Learning New Skills – Learning new skills can be difficult, but it is made a little easier when we are in a new environment, kind of like going away to college. Particularly when we are living in that new environment, it gives us the opportunity to really develop new skills into habits. Residential treatment affords us the flexibility of learning new skills at our own pace with the reinforcement of being in a different place. There is also the benefit of having 24-hour support available as we begin to practice our new skills.
• Access to Facilities – In addition to the access to support and medical treatment around the clock, we also have access to facilities, services, and activities that we may not enjoy in another environment. For example, there are facilities that offer acupuncture, massage, and yoga as part of the recovery process. Or sports facilities such as tennis, basketball, or volleyball. Services such as a personal trainer and access to a gym. There are classes and coaches, counseling and activities. Residential treatment simply is an experience that cannot be re-created in any other way.
There is a reason that residential treatment is the most successful method of treatment for the beginning of recovery from substance abuse: it works. For all of the reasons above and then some, it is the ideal start to our path of recovery. The tricky part is finding which residential facility is a good match for you. While choosing recovery is typically done during a time of crisis, take some time to review the facility, research their website, and maybe ask around for recommendations. The biggest question should be: “Will I feel safe here?” You can do extraordinary things when you are in a safe, comfortable place.
Residential treatment does not need to be scary. There are private, luxurious facilities in the San Diego area of Southern California where you can begin your recovery safely and comfortably in small, personalized groups. Contact AToN Center to find out if one of their locations is a good match for your recovery. You deserve the best, so find the starting place for your success today.
Your recovery begins at AToN Center. Call (888) 535-1516 today. We have everything you need to succeed and be comfortable and safe while succeeding.