Slipping into alcohol and drug addiction happens fast and without warning. Before you realize it, you can turn from the occasional user into a hard-core substance abuser unable to control or resist the urge for drugs or alcohol. Anyone who has ever gone through the hell of struggling with severe addiction will tell you that the hardest part of the recovery program was to take the first step and enter the right treatment program.

Substance abusers need to overcome various issues to be ready to change their life for the better. First, they need to admit they are battling substance use disorders and need substance abuse treatment by entering an addiction center or alcohol rehab. Family members often stage an intervention to face substance abusers with the devastating consequences of their addiction and the urgency for receiving effective addiction recovery treatments. On the other hand, patients sometimes reach the tipping point where they realize they need to recover from drug-using to save relationships with their spouses, parents, or children, and return to a healthier, fulfilling life.

Whatever your reason for starting with rehabilitation treatment is, you need to know you have already made the hardest decision. Once you decide to change your life and seek treatment and recovery, all the following stages in your recovery process will be easier.

People who decide to go to addiction treatment centers and participate in recovery programs stress about numerous important issues. Who is going to take care of children? Who will pay my bills? Where do I go for drug testing? What is going to happen to my job? These are all reasonable questions patients preparing for an addiction recovery program struggle to find answers to.

For this reason, we compiled a shortlist of useful tips to help you prepare for the demanding recovery process, leaving all the most crucial things settled and taken care of. In this way, you will be able to completely focus on your addiction recovery, doing what has to be done to heal and start a better life.

Before you enter the addiction treatment facility, it is essential to know what to expect from every stage of the addiction treatment you are about to participate in.

1. Be Well-Informed About the Addiction Program Stages

While there are different types of treatment programs, every addiction recovery program contains the following stages:

  • Admission and Intake
  • Detox
  • Inpatient Treatment
  • Outpatient Treatment
  • Release
  • Aftercare

The addiction treatment process starts with admission and intake. During this stage, the drug and alcohol rehab facility staff will ask you questions about the nature of your drugs and alcohol addiction and symptoms that you have been experiencing. This will offer the treatment providers a better understanding of the issues you struggle with. Then, you will go through the substance abuse evaluation accompanied by psychological and social assessments that will lead to an efficient addiction treatment plan. Patients talk to the clinical therapist and case managers before receiving a personalized treatment plan that will meet all their needs. They also discuss the cost of the addiction treatment, in order to see whether their health insurance covers these expenses and choose the best way to pay for the treatment.

Detox is the first stage of an addiction recovery program that cleans the body from all the harmful effects of long-term drug abuse. Since the array of serious withdrawal symptoms usually accompanies detox, medicaments-assisted treatments are essential to prevent relapse and help patients overcome these symptoms.

Inpatient care facility treatment is the next phase of the recovery process where patients spend a predetermined amount of time and dedicate all their energy and effort to their recovery. Most inpatient addiction programs are based on behavioral health methods to provide the necessary psychological treatment in addition to medical care. These recovery programs encourage patients to develop new skills and accept constructive behavioral patterns to build better relationships and lead meaningful lives once they return to the “real world.”

Outpatient treatment options are devised for those willing to participate in the addiction recovery program, but various engagements prevent them from signing in for residential treatment.

Once you complete your residential rehabilitation treatment and get released from the recovery center, you will commence the aftercare program.

These programs usually consist of attending various 12-steps based group therapy sessions to help you stay on track in your recovery. Staying committed to these peer support group meetings is critical for remaining sober in the long run.

2. Take Care of Your Work Duties

Addiction is a serious illness that may demand long-term and complex treatment, so you need to inform your employer about your intentions to enter an addiction recovery program in due time.

Numerous people battling addiction face social stigma on a daily basis. For this reason, they often feel embarrassed to talk about their needs. However, if you prepare for long-term inpatient addiction treatment, talk to your employer openly and honestly. Every successful employer that wants healthy and satisfied workers will understand and encourage you to recover.

If you are a full-time employee that has spent at least a year with the same company, you don’t need to worry about losing your job. The Family and Medical Leave Act guarantees you 12 weeks of unpaid leave that also covers addiction recovery treatment. However, some companies may offer additional paid or unpaid sick leave, and you need to check whether this is the case with your employer.

3. Provide Appropriate Care for Your Children

Entering inpatient addiction treatment may be especially difficult for parents. The notion of being separated from your nearest and dearest may be a crucial factor that deters you from entering an addiction recovery program. We understand how real this struggle is. However, parents starting a rehab program need to focus on healing and recovery that will lead to a happier and healthier life of the entire family. You need to act in your children’s best interests and choose someone your children love to take care of them while you are away. Ideally, this would be a spouse or a life partner, close relatives, friends, or grandparents.

In case you do not have someone close to step up and take care of your children while you are in addiction treatment, you should look for rehab centers that offer daycare services. This way, you will be able to commit to your recovery process, knowing that your children are safe and close.

4. Settle Your Finances Before You Go

You should pay all your bills and settle other financial obligations before you start your recovery treatment. You can sign up for automatic payments with your bank, or choose a trustworthy person to pay your bills while you are in the treatment facility. The last thing you want to face when you return home ready to build a drug-free life is a pile of unpaid bills you need to tackle.

5. Bring Only the Essentials to Rehab

Most rehab facilities let their patients bring luggage, especially for long-term stays. However, they will not let you bring a cell phone with you because this may violate other patients’ privacy. Furthermore, patents can use them to get drugs into rehab centers or leave programs prematurely. Here is a shortlist of essentials you can bring into the rehabilitation facility.

1. A list of contacts that you think are an essential part of your recovery process, like loved ones, medical professionals, your 12-steps program sponsor, and so on.

2. The list of all the prescription medications you currently use.

3. Credit and debit cards, along with your ID and health insurance card.

4. Hygiene and cosmetic products.

5. Comfortable clothing.

Music and reading can play a significant part in providing peace and focus essential for successful recovery. You may bring an iPod or MP3 and listen to music to relax and entertain. Books may also bring you much-needed peace, and the photos of your nearest and dearest will motivate you to stay strong in moments of doubt.

6. Spend Time with Friends and Family

People entering addiction recovery programs are terrified of leaving their support system behind. For this reason, it is essential to spend time with your closest friends and family that support you on this complex and demanding journey before you start treatment. In this way, you will show them your love and appreciation, and they will motivate you to complete the recovery treatment and come home, ready to start a healthy and fulfilled life.

Final Words

Deciding to change your life and apply for an addiction recovery program is the hardest step in the entire recovery process. Once you feel you are ready to transform your life, you need to

prepare for this life changing process. Substance abusers preparing to enter addiction recovery worry about leaving their work and their loved ones behind.

They also face the fear of the unknown, since many of them do not know what to expect when they first undergo drug or alcohol detox and treatment. There’s also fear of alcohol withdrawal symptoms and reaction to treatment medications. We have also provided tips to help you solve these issues and encourage you to begin this healing process that will lead to a healthier and happier life. However, if you want to find out more about various addiction recovery programs, the cost of rehab, or what to bring to rehab, feel free to call us, and we will do everything we can to help you understand the addiction recovery process.