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Finding a Good Treatment Facility: 6 Questions You Should Ask

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Finding a Good Treatment Facility: 6 Questions You Should Ask

Looking for addiction treatment can be scary, stressful, and expensive. You know you need rehab, but you’re not sure what that really means or how to find it. On top of that, you might not even realize that the addiction treatment world is plagued by unethical facilities. So, finding a good treatment facility might not even be on your mind. When it’s a matter of life or death, any treatment facility will do, right?

finding a good treatment facility

When you’re hungry and craving pasta, all you have to do is search “Italian food near me” on Yelp and you’ll instantly receive a list of exactly that: Italian food near you. Additionally, you’ll see each restaurant’s ratings, FAQs, and in-depth reviews. When you’re struggling with alcohol or drug addiction and need help now, there are locators that can give you a list of treatment facilities near you. But how do you know which one is a good treatment facility?

There’s no expansive informational review site for addiction treatment facilities. Unfortunately, the status of the industry requires you to do a bit of research on your own in order to find a good treatment facility. We lament that this barrier should not exist, especially for people who are already at their most vulnerable. But we’re hoping to make the task a bit easier by offering a few essential questions you should ask any treatment facility you’re considering.

Finding a Good Treatment Facility, Step 1: Individualized Treatment

The first go-ahead when finding a good treatment facility is determining whether or not their program is personalized to the individual. A one-size-fits-all approach is not ideal, no matter what a facility claims its success rate is. Addiction is an extremely complicated illness in and of itself and as it varies from person to person. It needs to be met with comprehensive and individualized treatment. What works for one person might not work for another. A good treatment facility will understand that fact and weave its program features in respect to it.

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6 Questions You Should Ask Any Addiction Treatment Facility

  • Do you treat co-occurring disorders?

    Addiction is often linked with co-occurring mental disorders. In fact, almost 8 million people in the U.S. alone are affected by co-occurring disorders, also referred to as “dual diagnosis”. Addiction can coexist with variety of mental disorders, including anxiety, depression, and bipolar disorder. Along with the long list of concurrent diseases, people suffering from dual diagnosis vary widely in the severity of their illnesses.

    Because of their intricate entanglement within a person’s mind, both the addiction and the mental illness need to be addressed, diagnosed, and treated for a successful recovery. Simply put, treating the addiction will not make the mental illness go away and treating the mental illness will not make the addiction go away. In actuality, treating the addiction and leaving the mental illness is essentially fuel for relapse in the future.

    When finding a good treatment facility, it’s important to know whether or not the facility is licensed and able to treat co-occurring disorders in order for you or your loved one to have the best chance at a successful recovery.

  • What are the staff’s credentials?

    It’s important to keep in mind that a treatment facility’s staff likely comes from all walks of life — just like the clients they interact with. However, there are some credentials you’ll want to keep an eye out for. Psy.D degrees, Master’s, and nurse practitioners are a few licenses you’ll want in the staff who’ll be treating you or a loved one. Not everyone on the staff may hold these higher degrees. You’ll at least want each client’s primary counselor to be licensed. Additionally, it’s a good sign if most of the staff who lead group sessions are licensed as well, as groups are where most recovery work occurs.

    This is not to say that staff members who don’t hold specific credentials can’t give quality care. Great care can come from a variety of training levels. It’s a red flag, however, if no one on the staff holds these higher certifications.

  • Do you offer Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT)?

    Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) combines FDA-approved medications with behavioral therapies during the detox process. Certain substances, like opioids and alcohol, create physical dependencies from which withdrawal can be dangerous and fatal. Addiction treatment facilities will use medications like buprenorphine and naltrexone to ease withdrawal symptoms.

    If the facility does offer MAT, be prepared to ask a few additional questions for more information:

    • What medications do you prescribe?
    • When will a patient be assessed by a doctor?
    • What is the protocol for determining need and prescribing medications?
    • How often are vitals monitored?

  • What are your primary treatment methods?

    The more time you put into finding a good treatment facility, the more you’ll come to discover how wide the “treatment” scope can be. You can find an addiction treatment program that preaches almost any kind of therapy, from equine therapy to hypnosis. It’s best to look for evidence-based treatments over those that sound unique and exciting. While supplementing residential and outpatient treatments with social activities is beneficial, a program should focus on evidence-based treatments like MAT and cognitive behavioral therapy.

  • What kind of extended care do you offer?

    There is no such thing as a cure for addiction. Recovering addicts need to continuously work the program to successfully maintain their sobriety. As far as actual treatment goes, there’s detox, residential, and outpatient. Not everyone will require the same levels of care. However, it’s typically recommended that a patient go through the full continuum. If you think that’s the case for you or your loved one, it’s a good idea to get a good understanding of the levels of care that the treatment facility you’re considering offers.

    Ask what happens after a patient completes detox and/or residential treatment. Some treatment facilities will offer an outpatient program that clients can easily phase into. If not, they may be affiliated with external outpatient programs that they can refer clients too, or — better yet — facilitate a transfer.

    On this same note, it’s a good idea to inquire about how the facility handles things like relapses and follow-ups.

    • Do they have an active alumni program for clients to continue receiving peer support?
    • Does the staff check in and follow up with clients after completing treatment?
    • Will the facility continue to work with a client who relapses?

  • Is your facility accredited?

    Determine if the facility is accredited by CARF and The Joint Commission. Accreditation does not guarantee a successful recovery for all clients. That said, these accreditations at least hold facilities to certain standards in regards to safety, diagnosis, treatment, and patient rights.

finding a good treatment facility

New Start Recovery falls in line with all of these questions. We also strive to go above and beyond to support individual clients as well as our community as a whole. That said, if you or a loved one are struggling with substance abuse, we want you to feel as comfortable as possible with your decision to get help. So, if you would like more information or clarification about any aspect of our program, our addiction specialists are standing by 24/7 to answer your questions: 855-737-7363

Posted in Detox, Recovery, Residential