The Guide to Rehab: 9 Myths About Inpatient Treatment
In regards to sobriety and long-term recovery, it is largely agreed upon that undergoing inpatient treatment for substance abuse is an effective tool. While residential treatment provides the best outcomes in recovery, there are many barriers that block people from going to treatment. Many of these barriers are created by myths that surround inpatient recovery. In order to overcome barriers to treatment, you need to understand the most common myths that surround inpatient drug treatment and the reality that debunks these myths.
NINE COMMON MYTHS ABOUT INPATIENT TREATMENT
MYTH #1—“I CAN’T AFFORD REHAB”
It is true…pursuing drug treatment at a rehab center can be expensive with costs potentially rising to the tens of thousands of dollars. While cost is the number one deterrent in regards to people bypassing inpatient treatment, the fact is that many insurance companies cover the majority of costs for treatment. Even if you don’t have insurance, many treatment facilities offer a myriad of options in the financing of treatment through the use of scholarships or the use of city and county funding sources.
MYTH #2—INPATIENT TREATMENT IS THE ONLY OPTION
Inpatient is the most effective drug treatment option because an individual lives in the facility itself and away from the distractions and temptations of the outside world. While this is ideal, there are many people who work and have family commitments and an extended stay in a rehab facility may not be plausible. There are other options, such as intensive outpatient, for those with both work and family commitments. Outpatient programs are tailored to fit within a person’s busy schedule so they can receive the quality care they need while fulfilling those important outside commitments.
MYTH #3—“I HAVE TO GO COLD TURKEY”
Physicians that specialize in addiction utilize a wide variety of techniques and medications to help combat the more difficult physical and emotional problems of withdrawal and early recovery. For example, doctors may prescribe drugs to help with the cravings for drugs or treatment centers may take more holistic approaches in helping those in recovery deal with the physical, psychological and spiritual symptoms of withdrawal through the use of counseling, therapy, recreation and meditation techniques.
MYTH #4—“I WON’T BE ABLE TO SEE MY FAMILY”
Statistics have shown that people addicted to alcohol or other drugs find much more success in quitting – and staying stopped – when their family members participate fully in treatment and recovery. That is why treatment centers now strongly encourage the families of residents to gain a better understanding of the role they play in the disease and to commit to their own programs of change and healing.
MYTH #5—“TREATMENT CENTERS ARE SCARY!”
Oftentimes when people think about inpatient treatment images from movies like “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” comes to mind. Inpatient treatment centers are warm and inviting and provide a home-like atmosphere to patients. They also have licensed, qualified and empathetic staff whose goal is to see people succeed in recovery. Many inpatient treatment centers are voluntary so people are free to leave if they want to do so.
MYTH #6—ADDICTS ARE CODDLED IN TREATMENT
Addiction to alcohol and other drugs is a life-threatening illness that thrives on denial. Alcoholic/addicts often demonstrate thinking errors, self-centeredness, immaturity and a lack of social skills. Each of these must be addressed as compassionately as possible and as directly as necessary. It is often said in treatment that “I’m more interested in saving your life than sparing your feelings.”
MYTH #7—“I HAVE TO BE DOWN AND OUT”
Addicts come in all shapes and sizes and from many walks of life. A person does not have to live on Skid Row or be destitute to seek treatment. Because of heightened awareness of drug and alcohol abuse, people now seek treatment much earlier than they used to.
MYTH #8—THE RELIGION MYTH
The spiritual aspect of recovery is an important pillar in the foundation, but oftentimes people may think God will be forced down their throats, especially when it comes to the twelve-step traditions. Each treatment center chooses its own approach to this question and most try to accommodate a wide variety of beliefs while still implementing a spiritual foundation.
MYTH #9—“ONCE TREATMENT IS DONE, I AM CURED”
Inpatient treatment is not a cure-all. It provides the newly recovering addict with the tools, support, and empowerment they need to continue on their path of recovery once formal treatment is completed. It is generally accepted that addiction to alcohol or other drugs is an incurable disease that can be arrested only if the addict finds and maintains a lifetime commitment to recovery.