For many people struggling with drug addiction, inpatient drug treatment programs present an effective first step towards achieving sobriety. Inpatient drug rehab may enable these individuals to focus exclusively on safely withdrawing from drugs, educating themselves on addiction, and developing effective skills and strategies for continuing recovery after treatment.1
How Effective Are Inpatient Drug Treatment Programs?
The main goal of drug addiction inpatient treatment is to stop drug abuse and help the struggling individuals return to productive functioning in their community, family, and workplace.1 Research shows that inpatient drug rehab can be quite effective at achieving these goals. Many individuals who enter a treatment program at an inpatient facility and remain in treatment have a greater likelihood of stopping their drug use, decreasing criminal activity, and improving their social, psychological, and occupational functioning.1
However, it is important to keep in mind that the outcomes of inpatient drug treatment programs may depend on the exact nature and extent of the patient’s drug abuse, as well as the quality of treatment offered. Addiction is a chronic disease that, like many other chronic medical illnesses, can be managed successfully, but the path to recovery may not be easy.1
Unfortunately, many consider inpatient treatment a failure when relapse occurs. This is not the case, since successful treatment requires continual evaluation and adjustments to maximize the patient’s chances of recovery.2 Response to drug addiction treatment is often not a matter of total failure or complete success. Instead, it may have more to do with degrees of improvement and modifying the treatment modalities to best suit the needs of the patient at the current stage of treatment.2
How Does Inpatient Drug Treatment Work?
Although treatment options for drug addiction may vary, inpatient treatment programs typically consist of the following distinct stages:3
- Intake assessments
While not all inpatient drug treatment facilities use the same intake process, this phase is likely to involve discussing your treatment options with a professional.4 The goal of the intake process is to evaluate the patient’s needs and develop a tailored plan. During intake, the treatment professional might perform comprehensive assessments and testing, including medical examinations, psychological assessments, and psychosocial evaluations.4
- Medical detox
Physical dependence on certain substances, such as heroin and prescription opioids, is associated with markedly unpleasant and potentially dangerous withdrawal symptoms.5 Safe medical detox administered at an inpatient drug treatment facility can help ease these symptoms and benefit many individuals struggling with drug abuse. Whether the patient needs medically assisted detox and the exact medications provided will depend on the type of substance being abused and the severity of addiction.5
The next stage in drug addiction treatment is rehab. During this stage, the patient undergoes a treatment program carefully tailored to their specific needs. The rehabilitation phase may include individual behavioral therapy, family and group therapy, treatment for co-occurring disorders, faith-based treatment options, holistic treatment, and many other treatment options depending on the facility.3
Addiction recovery is a lifelong process. Before a patient leaves an inpatient drug treatment facility, they may discuss aftercare options with the treatment professionals. While the particular components of aftercare may vary depending on the patient’s needs, post-rehab individual and group therapy sessions may assist the patient in returning to their daily life and increase their chances of achieving long-term recovery. Aftercare may include 12-step groups, individual counseling and therapy, sober living, and more.6
What to Consider Before Entering Inpatient Drug Rehab
In addition to the drug treatment options offered, an individual seeking treatment may also take into account different features and amenities provided at inpatient facilities.7 This may include the payment options and insurance coverage, quality of food, or unique amenities such as equestrian therapy and spa-like environments.
If you are dealing with drug addiction or have a loved one who is, discussing your treatment needs with an admission navigator can be a great first step toward successful recovery. A professional can help introduce you to the available inpatient treatment programs and amenities, and start creating a treatment plan carefully tailored to your unique needs.
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.
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