Key takeaways:

  • There are a wide variety of inpatient addiction treatments available. Rehabs not only differ by location but also different therapies that are offered, support groups, the experience of staff, what amenities are available, and the level of comfort provided
  • Some treatment centers will offer basic or communal living, with a shared cafeteria and rooms similar to a hospital. Others offer luxury accommodations with amenities like on-site pools, spas, and recreation in a retreat-like setting
  • Some rehabs specialize in a particular kind of addiction, while others will treat all different kinds of addictions. Doing research online and calling or visiting the facility can usually help you determine whether the facility is able to treat your particular kind of addiction

Attending an inpatient addiction treatment rehab center provides those suffering from addiction with a safe, structured, drug-free environment where they can begin the process of recovery.

Introduction to inpatient rehab

Inpatient addiction rehab centers usually offer a combination of medical supervision, prescribed medications, individual and group therapy. 

Depending on the inpatient rehab facility, different levels of care may be available. Those with severe addictions who need medical detox may be able to receive the intensive care they need at an inpatient rehab. Generally, detox is a process that lasts a few days to a week and provides comfort, safety, and support to those going through the withdrawal phase. [1]

Others who don’t need medical detox but who need a combination of other therapeutic and medical support can also often get the help they need at these facilities. Some rehab facilities also offer long-term addiction recovery programs so that after detox the chances of relapse are reduced. 

There are a wide variety of inpatient addiction treatments available. Rehabs not only differ by location but also different therapies that are offered, support groups, the experience of staff, what amenities are available, and the level of comfort provided. [3] It is important that you do adequate research to find the inpatient rehab that is right for you.

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Get help during Covid-19

At Recovered, we recognize the impact COVID-19 has had and the continued challenges it poses to getting advice and treatment for substance use disorders. SAMHSA has a wealth of information and resources to assist providers, individuals, communities, and states during this difficult time and is ready to help in any way possible.

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What is an inpatient rehab program?

Residential treatment facilities offer various forms of inpatient care for people with addictions. Most inpatient treatment can last for 30-90 days, but the length of care can be shorter or longer depending on a person’s needs. How long a person stays in rehab depends on a number of factors including the severity of their addiction, whether they have other mental health or medical needs, and their personal preference. [3]

Every inpatient drug or alcohol rehab facility varies, not just from the types of therapy and staff available but also the level of accommodation. Some treatment centers will offer basic or communal living, with a shared cafeteria and rooms similar to a hospital. Others offer luxury accommodations with amenities like on-site pools, spas, and recreation in a retreat-like setting. The cost of substance abuse treatment can also vary substantially depending on the rehab you select. 

Many inpatient drug rehab centers have family programs available, where loved ones and families are invited to participate in counseling and other activities. This can be beneficial to help mend broken bonds by rebuilding trust and to identify dysfunctional aspects of relationships that can prove to be triggers for substance abuse. It also gives families a chance to be directly involved with the recovery of a loved one, helping them to see the damaging effects abusing drugs or alcohol has had on them.

How to choose an inpatient treatment center

If you decide that inpatient rehab is what you need (over an outpatient addiction treatment program), there are some factors you should consider before committing. Doing research about the available rehabs is advised, and patients are also encouraged to research the facility online, as well as visiting in person (if this is an option) before deciding if it's the right addiction treatment program for them.

Some questions to consider before committing to inpatient rehab include: [3]

What types of addiction does the inpatient program treat?

It is important when choosing an addiction treatment center that they have the right facilities and experience for treating your specific addiction type, as well as any co-occurring mental health conditions you may have and if they offer medication-assisted treatment. Some rehabs specialize in a particular kind of addiction, while others will treat all different kinds of addictions. Doing research online and calling or visiting the facility can usually help you determine whether the facility is able to treat your particular kind of addiction.

What types of therapy are available?

You may not know the specific form of therapy or counseling that will be best suited to help with your recovery, but knowing and understanding the options can help make the right choice. Most inpatient rehab centers will offer group and/or individual counseling sessions (which is best for your addiction recovery will often be decided after an assessment) as well as family therapy or a range of holistic options, such as art, music, yoga, or equine therapy. Others will use research-backed types of therapy like motivational interviewing, contingency management, or Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.

What kind of aftercare do they offer?

Inpatient addiction treatment programs usually only lasts one to three months, although there are some exceptions. People who receive treatment for at least six months or longer have a better chance of getting and staying clean and sober. Because of this, most inpatient rehab facilities have dedicated staff to help patients find an aftercare program. Some rehab facilities will offer these outpatient programs on-site, while others will direct you to other options in the community, such as 12 step programs and other support groups. Aftercare is essential to help build a strong foundation for your recovery and continued sober living.

What credentials and licensing does the facility have?

It is always worth checking the credentials of the clinical staff and any reviews of the facility itself before attending inpatient rehab. Treatments can prove costly and a poor level of care will often lead to you not receiving adequate treatment, increasing the likelihood of relapse. Almost all rehabs will have a variety of professionals on site, including licensed addiction counselors, social workers, doctors or nurses. Some rehab facilities have some of their staff listed on their website, with information about their background and experience, which can help you select a facility with the most experienced staff.

What peer group programs are offered?

Some rehab centers offer peer-led recovery groups for people recovering from an addiction. Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, and SMART recovery programs are common examples of peer-led groups for people in recovery. These groups are usually open to the public and free to attend. Participating in a peer-led recovery program can help connect you to a support system of other people in recovery, teach you new methods of coping, and help you establish a lasting plan for recovery. Research shows that participating in peer-led recovery groups helps to improve the likelihood of lasting sobriety.

What are my payment options?

Identifying the finance options for rehab treatment can be stressful. If you have health insurance, it’s always a good idea to check if the inpatient rehab center will accept your insurance before planning further treatment. If you’re uninsured, see if the rehab center offers in-house financing, payment plans, sliding scales, or scholarship options. Questioning your finance options will not only help you narrow your search options but also alleviate some of the stress of treatment. According to some sources, the cost of inpatient rehab can be as much as $800 per day or more for those who are self-paying.

What are the pros & cons of inpatient rehab?

Rehab helps many people establish their sobriety, but it is not a viable option for everyone. It’s important to weigh the pros and cons of inpatient rehab against other treatment options. While these will be different for everyone, some of the pros and cons of inpatient rehab may include:

Pros of inpatient rehab Cons of inpatient rehab
May be covered by insurance Can be costly
Offers a range of different treatment types Requires residential stay
Mental and medical health professionals on-site May cause schedule/life conflicts
Safe, drug-free environment Separation from family and/or loved ones
Can prevent early relapse Short-term in nature, requires aftercare

Taking the first steps towards recovery

Many feel they are alone with their addiction and that getting sober is out of their reach. The truth is that most people who develop addictions overcome them, even after their addiction has become serious. Inpatient rehab can be a great option for those who are just starting their recovery, as it provides comprehensive, wrap-around care that includes medication, therapy, structured therapeutic activities, and access to doctors, counselors, and other licensed professionals. [2] If you or someone you know is suffering from addiction, consider researching options for inpatient rehab to begin your recovery.