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Pros And Cons Of Long-Term Rehab Centers

Dillon McClernon

Authored by Dillon McClernon

Weigh the options for long-term drug rehab for a loved one with a substance abuse disorder.

If you have a loved one who struggles daily with addiction, you may have already looked into a variety of treatment options. While doing research, many people struggle with the idea of staying in long-term drug rehab centers. Patients and family members alike fear the impact it will have on their lives. Separation from your family members may be a frightening prospect, but it could be a necessity in order for your loved one to get the best treatment possible for a full recovery.

New research is changing the way that  professionals administer addiction treatment. Researchers and doctors such as Tim McLellan are developing the theory of treating addiction as a brain disease. He describes these three stages of addiction based on reactions in and activity throughout the brain:

  1. Binge and intoxication
  2. Withdrawal and negative affect
  3. Preoccupation and anticipation (or craving)

Through ever-changing research such as this, long-term drug rehab centers are constantly reconsidering and making changes in current treatment methods. Understanding how the brain physically reacts to addictive drugs over time gives physicians an advantage in attacking the physiological symptoms and preventing our patient from relapse. Nevertheless, there is a very strong psychological component to addiction as well. That is, many patients suffer from co-occurring disorders, in which include both substance and psychological issues. Fortunately, co-occurring disorders is one aspect of treatment that is comprehensively addressed during inpatient treatment.

Benefits Of Long-Term inpatient Care

Most inpatient facilities will have an average stay of thirty to ninety days. However, this will vary based on location as well as the individual’s needs. In this setting, patients are monitored twenty-four hours a day, giving the team of clinicians plenty of opportunities to custom-tailor a treatment plan for each patient. This treatment plan will guide our patient through the recovery process and beyond, including reestablishing a sober lifestyle after the intensive inpatient care has concluded.

Medication management is a common aspect of any addiction treatment program, and the best inpatient rehab centers are no exception. This setting allows doctors to make daily observations and adjustments. This will help them adapt to the changing needs of patients as they progress through the sobriety program.

While staying in long-term rehab centers, patients typically have a regimented schedule, with clinicians outlining their activities throughout the entire day. Many benefit from this rigid itinerary, especially if their addiction arose from a chaotic home or social situation. This can, however, actually be a negative aspect for some patients. Specifically patients whose personalities do not easily handle having others dictate their every move. Some people fear and avoid inpatient treatment for this very reason. It is important to stress to people in this situation that there are a multitude of alternative treatment methods.

Benefits Of outpatient Treatment

There are various types of outpatient treatment programs. For example, partial care allows our patient to attend treatment every weekday from 9 am – 4 pm, and return home at night. This level of care is not ideal for someone who has an unstable or unhealthy home environment. However, this can be an excellent option for some patients. That would be for those who have adequate accountability and support at home to reinforce and maintain the treatment they receive during the day.

Some patients may have enough stability to continue working while attending therapy and group meetings only in the afternoons. This often can be the next step after much more intensive programs. These patients gradually work their way from long-term drug rehab centers to outpatient programs, and then on to a place where they no longer need that rigid structure and can continue treatment with outpatient meetings in decreasing frequency.

Patients may also prefer outpatient treatment. This allows them to practice the principles they are learning right away in real-world situations. This sort of immediate daily feedback can work very well for some people. It can be very encouraging to see the benefits of the addiction treatment first hand and immediately. This is typically not a suitable option for those who need extra care to address psychological issues that exist alongside their addiction.

If you are overwhelmed looking for top rated addiction treatment centers, you can find help by calling 1-800-RECOVERY to reach the professionals at RCA and to find out more about treatment options available in your area. If you are worried about the impact of addiction on someone you love, do not hesitate. Please reach out for information on how you can help.

Authored by

Dillon McClernon

Dillon McClernon

Dillon currently serves as the Senior Director of Sales and Marketing at RCA. After his tenure as Chief Communications Officer and senior advisor to RCA, he opted for a full-time position at RCA where he could build a new team linking sales and marketing to directly impact RCA’s mission of saving 1 million lives.


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