If you or your loved ones suffer from substance abuse and mental health issues that usually come hand in hand, we are here to let you know that the “once an addict, always an addict” saying is simply not true. Not for a lot of people who received proper addiction treatment, with the help of compassionate, experienced experts. A life of long-term sobriety is not only an attainable goal but a reality for many people, some of which work as psychiatrists and counselors in drug and alcohol treatment centers themselves. 

In the guide below, you’ll learn about what addiction is, what it does to your physical and mental health, and what you and your loved ones can do to fight it.  You’ll also learn about the cost of drug rehab and all the details that factor into the total price. With the right information, you can make up your mind regarding the correct treatment programs for YOU, and start your recovery process.

Without further ado, let’s dive into the nooks and crannies of alcohol and drug treatment options, and the addiction recovery programs that will help you start your life anew, and finally be free from everything that’s pulling you back. 

Types of Addiction and Its Effects on Your Body

Drug addiction, alcohol addiction, and even prescribed medication addiction are complex and chronic dysfunctions that interfere with people’s everyday lives. Families are ruined, jobs are lost, academic achievements are pretty much impossible, and both your mental and physical health rapidly deteriorate

The substance use disorder comes quietly and sneaks up on most people, which is why many people fail to recognize the problem, and thus seek help or choose to be admitted to treatment centers.

Many addicts have a history of failed attempts to quit using, a preoccupation with their drug addiction or alcohol addiction, and a severe lack of control over their actions. The drug and alcohol craving is so strong it dulls any inhibitions, and gets people to disregard the consequences of their actions. 

The parts of the brain that control your pleasure centers, usually triggered by spending time with friends and family, professional success, exercise, and romantic relationships, is instead preoccupied with the happiness and joy found in opioids such as drugs and alcohol. Naturally, the limbic system of the brain that regulates our emotional responses quickly decides that non-opioid related pleasures are surplus, and motivates addicts to repeat the happiness-inducing behavior, hence creating drug and alcohol addiction. 

Long-term consequences of substance abuse triggered by these changes in the brain can include brain damage, memory issues, liver damage, acute sleep disorders, cardiovascular diseases, as well as mental health issues. Heroin addiction is particularly notorious for the increased risks of catching chronic viral conditions including HIV, hepatitis, and other diseases communicable through blood (and needle use).

The long-term chemical imbalances in the brain can also cause some symptoms of schizophrenia, depression, extreme anxiety, and bipolar disorder.

Substance Abuse Treatments, and Drugs and Alcohol Rehab Centers

Depending on the severity of your addiction, your budget, as well as the type of substance abuse you or your loved ones suffer from, there are different treatments to address your needs. 

Detox: Before deciding on any kind of opioid treatment programs, you must go through detox – or the process in which addictive substances are completely drained from your body. Depending on the substance in question, be it alcohol, drugs, prescription medication, or more dangerous drugs such as heroin or crystal meth, the detox and withdrawal process can be more or less dangerous. Sometimes, withdrawal is so dangerous it’s potentially fatal and has to be overseen by addiction physicians and psychiatrists who prescribe appropriate medications, such as benzodiazepines, antidepressants, or Clonidine. The idea is to ease the symptoms of withdrawal such as cramps, tremors, seizures, anxiety, irritability, and substance craving.

Inpatient Rehab: Out of all types of treatments, inpatient treatment is the most effective, and the most expensive one. You spend 15-90 days in a treatment facility, where you go through guided drug and alcohol detox treatments. Experts such as addiction psychiatrists, addiction physicians, and addiction counselors are at your service, and they help you through the more severe types of addiction. Medication, group therapy, individual therapy, and even excursions such as trips to the beach and hiking are all included in the price. 

Outpatient Rehab: Reserved for more moderate addiction drug or alcohol addiction, outpatient care allows you to go on with your everyday activities such as going to work, attending college or high school, taking care of your kids, or socializing with friends while still undergoing treatment. This program can take 3 months, or an entire year, with possible pauses. During this time, you still visit treatment facilities for individual therapies as much and as long as you need to. Services such as a sober companion are also available as a part of your outpatient therapy, to minimize the risks during travels or particularly tempting social gatherings, such as parties. Before you make up your mind about inpatient vs outpatient treatment, you can get free screenings and advice from a number of clinics, but we advise you to talk to an expert, rather than deciding on a whim. 

Medications: Depending on how dangerous the substances in your system are, and how risky the withdrawal can get, medication-assisted types of treatment can be a necessity. Most moderate types of addictions do not require medication, but extreme alcohol and opiate addiction have to be accompanied by benzodiazepines, antidepressants, or Clonidine, which your addiction psychiatrist will prescribe. Compared to the cost of addictive substances, the medications will be a negligible loss on a yearly basis. 

Types of Addiction Treatment Specialists

Recovery Coaches. Before you decide which type of addiction treatment specialists you need to get rid of your addiction issues for good, it’s a good idea to hire a recovery coach. Even though they can’t diagnose you or prescribe medication, they can help you find the right treatment facility and treatment program to suit your unique needs. A recovery coach will also come in handy during the time you’re rebuilding your life as an ex-addict, They help you manage your personal relationships, find employment, and not give in to the temptation of another relapse. 

Addiction Psychiatrists. Addiction psychiatrists prescribe medications that are vital during your detox process and can help you manage your mental health conditions such as anxiety, bipolar disorder, or depression even after your regular addiction treatments are completed. An addiction psychiatrist usually holds a Ph.D. degree and is certified by the American Board of Addiction Medicine. Keep in mind that they can choose to do talk therapy or not. Talk therapy is usually the job of an addiction psychologist. The medication prescribed by an addiction psychiatrist can also help with withdrawal symptoms during your detox, and manage drug or alcohol cravings. 

Addiction Psychologists. The masters of talk therapy who help you come to terms with your past, reconnect with your support network (family, friends, colleagues), and visualize a better future for yourself. Addiction psychologists are a vital part of your battle for a life of sobriety. They cannot prescribe medication, but they will lead group therapies, family therapies, family plans for building support, compassion, and understanding, and other activities. They will also teach you how to manage substance abuse cravings throughout your lifetime. Breathing exercises, meditation, anxiety coping mechanisms and other self-help tools will come from educated, experienced, and compassionate professionals. Addiction psychologists also lead you through your 12-step program. 

Addiction psychotherapists. Either addiction psychiatrists or addiction psychologists who went out of their way to advance their studies and become psychotherapists, or ordinary people who have completed relevant courses and training to help you battle your addiction through talk therapy and psychotherapy. They are usually cheaper than psychiatrists and psychologists and are a great choice for people with moderate addiction issues. 

Addiction Medicine Physicians. These people hold certification by the American Board of Addiction Medicine, and their job is to ensure you go through your withdrawal process without significant consequences for your physical health. Since some detox processes can be extremely dangerous due to seizures, fever, and other dangerous symptoms, addiction medicine physicians are there to keep you in check. 

Interventionists. Aptly named professionals, interventionists are usually hired by loved ones and family members to help you understand that you need to seek addiction treatment or be placed in an addiction treatment center. Many addicts are unaware of their addiction or have lost all hope of ever getting better after a series of relapses. A Certified Intervention Professional will connect with your loved ones, and help you stop resisting your recovery process, and start building an addiction-free future for yourself and your family. 

Substance Abuse Social Workers. Usually certified by the National Association of Social Workers, these addiction professionals provide counseling, coaching, and resources for people with drugs and alcohol addiction. Usually affiliated with other social work institutions, they typically hold a degree in Social Work and help underprivileged individuals see their way out of addictions on a budget. 

Addiction, Alcohol, and Drug, or Substance Abuse Counselors. Sometimes former addicts who have learned how to come out of the hell of addiction and are not teaching others to do the same. They are not too academically educated, but they know a great deal about addiction and can help you overcome your struggles. They might have a master’s degree, or merely a high school degree, but they have dedicated their entire lives to helping addicts build a clean, bright future for themselves. They are usually recognized by the National Certified Addiction Counselor designation.  A more affordable solution than psychologists and psychiatrists, substance abuse counselors might have anything from a high school degree to a master’s degree. We wholeheartedly recommend counselors as a side-treatment for more severe types of addiction and a long-term, budget sobriety assistants in the long run. 

The Cost of Addiction Treatment

The cost of American addiction centers can vary depending on the type of addiction treatment you need, and the luxury level of an addiction treatment facility. If your budget is limited, you can apply for a free or a low-income recovery center. There, you will receive the basic addiction care you need, but will probably have to wait a while before you get a free spot or schedule an appointment since the waiting list is lengthy. As for addiction facilities covered by your insurance, private health insurance or personal budget, you’d probably get admitted immediately, or on very short notice. 

The cost of a rehab program depends on a number of factors, such as what kind of treatment you choose, where the rehab center is located, and how long you stay.

  • Inpatient treatment: from $2,000 to $25,000 for a 30-day program
  • Outpatient treatment: from free to $10,000.
  • Drugs and/or alcohol detox: from $300-$800 per day.

Before you start worrying about addiction treatment costs, take a moment to compare this short-term investment to a lifetime of addiction costs. Once you are free from your addiction, finding a good job, reconnecting with your family and friends, and the overwhelming pride and confidence you’ll feel for having overcome this huge challenge will result in a steady income, and fulfilling happy life. You’ll also stop wasting money on alcohol, drugs, or misused prescription medication. Taking on debt, or having a loved one take on debt, therefore, would not be as bad an idea as it appears. Think of it as an investment, rather than an expense. Moreover, a necessary investment, to help you live out the rest of your life in a stable environment, fully able to control your impulses, your decisions, and your future. 

The Cost of Addiction

Let’s take a look at some truly hard-to-swallow pills. Addicts are less likely to hold down a job, and easily get alienated from even the closest people such as friends and family. The substance abuse quickly replaces all other pleasures, and seeking a new “high” becomes a person’s single pursuit in life. With this mindset, finding work, holding a job, and experiencing functional, loving, and stable personal relationships becomes nearly impossible. This leads to grief, loneliness, and eventually even mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, and (depending on the type of substance use), even schizophrenia and permanent brain damage, even conditions such as liver failure.

Additionally, addicts are less able to engage in otherwise normal everyday activities such as driving, processing complex information, or interpersonal relationships. This can lead to extremely costly fines, legal issues, and even car accidents, divorce, and custody battle costs. Some deeds committed while driving under the influence, or hurting the people you love, can even never be undone.

Alcoholics can spend over $4000 per year on various beverages, while some drug addicts report spending tens of thousands of dollars on their addiction. Sober, mentally stable, confident, and happy ex-addicts are more likely to pursue their happiness. Find employment, get back in control of their life choices, and form meaningful, loving, and lasting relationships with their families, friends, children, and partners. 

Final Words

As you can see, drug treatment centers can cost a lot of money, whether we’re talking about inpatient treatment, outpatient treatment, or simple detox services. Your insurance may cover the entirety of your medical bills or only some of it. Some cheaper insurance options will refuse to offer any financial assistance. Still, the cost of addiction is immensely higher and leaves no room for a bright, productive, and fulfilling future. If you or your loved one suffer from substance abuse and mental health issues, we urge you to get help ASAP. Remember, the sooner you reach out for help, the less costly your addiction treatment. 

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