Treatment Facilities for Substance Abuse

Addiction is a complex and persistent condition that involves uncontrolled use of a substance despite negative consequences. Individuals who struggle with addiction often experience brain changes that threaten their self-control and interfere with their ability to avoid intense drug-taking impulses.

Addiction is treatable and can be handled effectively. For years and probably for their entire life, people who are in recovery from an addiction may be at risk for recurrence. Evidence shows that combining medications for the treatment of addiction with behavioral therapy provides most patients the greatest chance of success.

In order to provide the patient with the types of care that will bring them the most benefits, substance abuse treatment facilities rely on methods adapted to their unique substance use habits and individual needs. Treatment professionals may also consider and address any co-occurring physical, emotional, and social issues the individual is dealing with, which may also contribute to achieving lasting recovery.1

Substance Abuse Facilities: What Do They Do?

Many different types of facilities offer care for substance use disorder (SUD). In many recovery facilities, the primary providers are professionally qualified people who are accredited or licensed as substance abuse counselors.2

Most recovery services appoint patients to a trained healthcare team. Depending on the type of treatment, teams can be made up of social workers, counselors, physicians, nurses, psychologists, therapists, or other professionals.

A person entering care usually receives a clinical assessment. A complete evaluation of the person is required to help the care workers provide the type of treatment that best suits the individual. The evaluation also allows program counselors to collaborate with the participant to create a successful treatment plan. While clinical assessment continues during the care of an individual, it begins at or just before the patient is admitted to the treatment facility for substance abuse.

A counselor or case manager is assigned after the assessment. The treatment specialist will work with the patient to build a recovery plan. This strategy outlines the challenges, treatment targets, and ways to accomplish those goals. Based on the evaluation, the counselor can refer you to a physician to determine if you need medical supervision to stop substance use.2

treatment facilities for substance abuse

Methods Used at Treatment Facilities for Substance Abuse

Typically, the following three methods are now incorporated into most services:3

  • A medical model emphasizes the biological and genetic or physiological roots of addiction that need medical care and uses pharmacotherapy to alleviate symptoms or modify behavior.
  • A psychological model concentrates on the maladaptive motivational learning or emotional dysfunction of a person as the main cause of drug addiction. This method involves psychotherapy or behavioral therapy conducted by a mental health professional.
  • A socio-cultural model emphasizes flaws in the social and cultural system or process of socialization that can be improved by changing the physical and social environment. This is especially achieved through participation in fellowships or spiritual practices of self-help and supportive social networks.

In most current programs, these three models have been woven into a biopsychosocial approach applied in the following types of substance abuse treatment facilities:4

  • Long-term residential treatment: Care is given 24 hours a day, usually in non-hospital settings.
  • Short-term residential treatment. It offers comprehensive yet relatively short care based on a modified 12-step program.
  • Outpatient treatment: Varies in the type and intensity of services offered. Such care costs less than residential treatment and is also more appropriate for people with employment or with extensive social support.

Who Can Benefit From Going to a Substance Abuse Facility

Most people dealing with substance abuse addiction can benefit from entering a treatment facility for drug abuse or alcohol addiction.5 When in rehab, patients will be able to concentrate fully on healing. When in care, they will be isolated from people and places that may have encouraged substance abuse, and from people who might want to convince patients that they cannot recover. Patients at a dedicated facility don’t have to deal with day-to-day stressors when focusing their time and energy on recovery and rehabilitation.

Addiction involves mental, physical, and psychological issues, and treatment is vital to helping people in recovery understand the emotional roots of their substance use. They also learn how to build new, healthier coping strategies. Treatment facilities can help patients see flaws in their thinking and actions that can contribute to their substance use, helping them adopt positive thoughts and behaviors.

One advantage specific to inpatient treatment is that there is 24-hour medical care patients can access during their stay. This can be highly important for the prevention of relapse of those with progressed addiction since individuals in recovery are susceptible to a number of health complications after stopping the use of the drug to which they have become addicted.

Frequently Asked Questions

Unsure where to start? Take Our Substance Abuse Self-Assessment

Take our free, 5-minute substance abuse self-assessment below if you think you or someone you love might be struggling with substance abuse. This evaluation consists of 11 yes or no questions that are designed to be used as an informational tool to assess the severity and probability of a substance use disorder. The test is free, confidential, and no personal information is needed to receive the result. Please be aware that this evaluation is not a substitute for advice from a medical doctor.