Starting your road to recovery when you have an alcohol addiction disorder can seem very scary and overwhelming at first. Some people do well with an Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP). However, many people benefit from an inpatient program also called residential treatment. For many people starting on their road to recovery, an inpatient program is necessary. Here are 7 reasons that inpatient rehab for alcohol addiction may be right for you.
If You Have Abused Alcohol for a Long Time Residential Treatment Might Be the Best Option
Inpatient rehab treatment, in general, is especially well suited for people who have abused alcohol severely and/or for a long period of time. During residential treatment you are completely removed from the environment you are living in now. People going through residential treatment live at the clinic full time instead of living at home. While that means that you will not be able to work or meet other responsibilities, you will also be removed from the stressors in your current environment that encouraged you to drink and/or helped start you down the path of addiction.
Examples of stressors you will avoid during residential treatment are:
- Peer pressure to drink by people who do not understand or do not want to understand your condition
- You will not be around places that you associate with drinking
- The people that trigger your stress drinking with won’t be there
While staying away from places and people that you associate with drinking might seem a little too much, it is very important. Often people who are new on their road to recovery get cravings if they visit the places where they used to abuse substances. This issue can be greatly helped by additional therapy after inpatient treatment.
You Are Safe from Alcohol Temptation During Inpatient Treatment
While you are in inpatient treatment, there will not be any alcohol in the clinic at any time. This means that you do not have to rely on your will power alone to not drink. Some people might start getting cravings without being exposed to stressors, especially during the first part of their road to recovery. It is important to remember that addiction is a cunning and harsh disorder. Alcohol is available in most places such as restaurants, celebrations, and many stores often including grocery stores. Many people need intense recovery programs such as inpatient rehabilitation to build themselves up to the point that they aren’t overwhelmed by cravings when they go shopping or out to eat somewhere where alcohol is readily available.
You Can Get Help for Co-Occurring Disorders During Residential Treatment
In residential treatment, you can be monitored and tested for other mental health conditions like:
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
- Panic disorder
These are just a few of the mental health disorders that can help send someone down the path to addiction. If you have another mental health disorder as well as an addiction disorder, this is known as co-occurring disorders. Both disorders have to be treated for a long-lasting road to recovery to be possible. Mental health disorders can cause a lot of stress and pain for the person with mental health disorders.
If the person with the mental health disorder has not been diagnosed with a mental health disorder, they might use substances such as alcohol to try to cope with their distress. People who have diagnosed mental health disorders will also sometimes drink or use other substances to try to deal with their distress if their medication is not working or is not working effectively enough. The human body is always changing. Sometimes a body’s natural change in chemistry will make a psychiatric medication either not as effective as it was or completely ineffective.
During inpatient treatment, your therapeutic reaction to different mental health medications can be closely monitored if you have co-occurring disorders. This means that your ideal treatment for your co-occurring disorders can be established more quickly and the program you and your specialists decide on can be put into action and monitored throughout your stay, making sure that you are taking the best medications for you at the doses that are right for you.
Therapy Might Be Easier for Some People During Inpatient Therapy
Some methods of therapy might work better for some people during residential treatment. Most clinics offer family therapy. Some people who have addiction disorders might become embarrassed by what they have done while they were deep in the grip of addiction. Others might feel anger towards their loved ones. In any case, emotions can run high during family therapy.
If the person on their road to recovery is in an outpatient program they will be going through therapy with their family whom they will probably see later in the day. This is especially if they live with their family. Sometimes approaching some issues in family therapy can be difficult and uncomfortable for the person with the addiction disorder.
During inpatient treatment, the person with the addiction disorder will live on the clinic grounds. This means that they will only be seeing their family in therapy and other events where the patient can have time to decompress if they need to after the event. Things can be said and problems can be worked on with greater ease because everyone will have had the time to process what they have been working on to a greater extent on their own after a therapy session.
Easing Down from Detox Level Care Can Be Easier in Residential Treatment
When someone goes through a treatment plan that starts in the residential treatment they have a strong follow up from detoxification from alcohol. Trying to detox from alcohol is dangerous and should not be done at home. Clinical detox programs are completed before any other form of addiction treatment. While someone is in detoxification in a clinical setting they will have 24/7 care from trained staff.
Because you do not have access to alcohol in an inpatient program you do not have to worry about the temptation that easily accessible alcohol has the moment you leave the clinic and/or detox facility or return to the same stressful environment. Residential treatment and the programs after it eases you into your new life on your road to recovery slowly so that you have time to adjust instead of going through such a drastic change. This way people with severe addiction disorders are not just thrown back into the same environment they were abusing alcohol in.
Inpatient treatment is a Good Time to Start Thinking About Medication-Assisted Treatment
Some programs utilize certain medications to help people who have substance abuse problems reduce cravings and block any positive sensation they get if they slip and drink alcohol. The name for using these medications in treatment is called Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT).
This medication is used to aid people who have chronic alcohol abuse disorder. It is important to not take it until 12 hours after consuming alcohol and it can continue to act up to two weeks after the last Disulfiram pill is taken. Disulfiram makes you experience unpleasant effects if you drink alcohol while taking it. These effects include:
- Chest pain
- And many more
Disulfiram discourages drinking but it not a cure for alcohol addiction.
This medication helps people with an alcohol substance abuse disorder get their brain to work in a way that is closer to how it was operating before the alcohol abuse disorder started. All substances, including legal substances, change the way that the brain works. It can be hard for the brain to rewire itself back into a more healthful condition.
This medication helps decrease alcohol cravings.
It is important that you pay special attention to all instructions given about these medications while you are a patient and follow the instructions given at the end of your treatment. In some cases, the staff at the clinic might be unwilling to let you take some of the medications home with you right away. In some cases, patients have to come to the clinic every day or every other day to receive their medication until the clinical staff decides that they are in the right place in your recovery journey to take a supply of your medication at home. No matter which program you come from you might not be allowed to take home your medication right away.
FMLA Might Protect Your Job During Treatment
There are no distractions when you are an inpatient at a clinical recovery center. Although the Family Medical Leave Medical Act (FMLA) does not cover the time taken off work because of an addiction, it should cover most substance abuse rehabilitation programs. Unless the company has a preexisting policy that they follow that they can show does not discriminate you may qualify for FMLA. FMLA is unpaid medical leave from work for up to 12 weeks during a 12-month period. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) does protect addiction to alcohol as a disability. This means that you may not have to worry about being fired because you are in treatment.
There are many paths to your road to recovery. It is important that you do not overlook any particular step in the treatment process. You need to do what you need to do to achieve lasting sobriety.
Please contact us to take the first step on your road to recovery.