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How to Find a Rehab Facility that Fits Your Needs?

Drug and alcohol addiction is a crisis in Canada. In 2018, around 21.2 million people aged 12 or over needed addiction treatment for a substance use disorder. Unfortunately, only 17% of them received help.

Though millions of people struggle with addiction each year, they are not the only ones who feel its weight. Partners, children, parents, friends, and other family members often witness the effects of addiction firsthand.

It’s easy to feel powerless, ignored or even angry when trying to help an addicted loved one. However, for people living with addiction, using drugs or alcohol is an illness — it’s nearly impossible to simply “stop”. It’s a condition that is difficult to recover from alone, often requiring professional care at a specialized facility.

Whether you or someone you love is struggling with a substance use disorder, you’ve already made a courageous first step by understanding that something needs to change — for your well-being, your relationships, and your future. The following will provide a step-by-step guide to searching for effective addiction treatment and care.

Do Your Due Diligence

While there are thousands of addiction rehab facilities throughout the country, not all of them have your best interests at heart. Rising addiction rates, particularly opioid addiction, have led to many unprofessional and unlicensed locations trying to profit from this crisis.

Other factors keeping Canadians from effective care include:

  • Internet search engines riddled with spam listings for addiction treatment
  • Scammers preying on people who need treatment
  • A boom in telehealth or online therapy platforms, which are not always designed for addiction treatment

If something sounds too good to be true, it likely is. To avoid scams or ineffective treatment, it’s important to do some research before agreeing to a rehab program. Knowing how to find a rehab facility can help you start your recovery with confidence.

Understand Your Options for Help

Whether you’re struggling with substance use and searching for treatment or worried that a loved one may have an addiction, there are a few common ways to find recovery resources.

  • Reach out to a professional who knows about addiction services, such as a therapist, counsellor, social worker, interventionist, or mental health clinician, for helpful guidance. These professionals often have access to a wide network of addiction specialists and can recommend local facilities that will fit your needs.
  • Search the internet if you want to look for recovery resources more discreetly. Online resources can help you research addiction, types of treatment, treatment facilities, and much more. Many online and local support groups, such as Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous provide testimonials, resources and information about addiction and recovery.
  • Contact an addiction or mental health hotline if you need assistance right away.
  • If you or someone you know is facing a dangerous situation, such as an overdose or violent behaviour, call 911 or contact emergency services

contact an addiction

Find the Best Addiction Treatment Centre

If you’ve decided that treatment is necessary for yourself or your loved one, it’s time to begin finding, researching, and contacting facilities. Your goal is to ask the right questions and find the right information to thoroughly vet each location.

Ask for Recommendations

Speaking with your primary care provider is an easy way to find professional recommendations. You may also contact a mental health professional, such as a psychiatrist, counsellor, therapist, or interventionist, to learn about local facilities that can work well for you. People in these roles often have a built-in network of contacts within local treatment facilities and community services.

Local recovery groups, whether online or in-person, are another good source for recommendations. Their members have struggled with addiction and often found addiction treatment themselves, so they can provide an inside look at what rehab clinics have to offer.

Some good questions may include the following:

  • Where should I (or my loved one) go for treatment?
  • Which rehab facilities should be avoided?
  • What is the best rehab facility in the city or province?
  • Can you share your experience with a certain facility?
  • How has your recovery been since leaving rehab?

Tip: Before contacting someone, you may want to think of an “elevator pitch” that briefly summarizes your current situation and what you’re looking for in a rehab facility. An example could be, “My loved one is addicted to drugs and becomes extremely sick when they can’t use them. We don’t have health insurance, but they need addiction treatment. Do you have a recommendation for a low-cost or free rehab facility in our area?”

Do Your Research – What to Look for in a Rehab

After creating a small list of potential options to consider, it’s time to do some research. These key points will help inform your decision about whether a facility can be depended on for a high level of care. It will also help you avoid facilities that may provide ineffective treatment or poor service.

Accreditations and Licensing

Accreditation and licensing are perhaps the most important things to look for during your search.  Accreditation from the government ensures that a facility consistently meets or exceeds standards of care. Licensing from the province’s department of children and families means the facility adheres to safety and treatment guidelines. This requires facility inspections and background checks on most medical staff members. Accredited, licensed facilities often offer the best rehab in the area.

Credentialed and Multidisciplinary Staff

The best addiction treatment facilities employ a multidisciplinary team of addiction experts and caring staff members. Addiction is a multi-faceted condition, so it’s important that clients have access to a wide range of professionals who can provide immediate care, ongoing treatment, and lifelong recovery assistance.

Qualified professionals hold memberships with the nation’s top healthcare organizations, ensuring they are always aware of cutting-edge treatment modalities and resources. Individually, each team member holds specialized medical degrees and should have experience in health care and addiction treatment.

Treatment Programs and Therapy Options

An effective addiction treatment facility provides a full continuum of care, uses evidence-based addiction treatments, and can treat mental health disorders, such as anxiety or depression, that often co-occur with addiction. Some therapy options for addiction include the following:

  • Cognitive behavioural therapy helps you understand the underlying beliefs and behaviours that contribute to substance use. It also teaches you healthy coping mechanisms to use during recovery and beyond.
  • Motivational interviewing is a technique in which a counsellor or therapist asks you questions such as “Why do you want to stop doing drugs?” or “How has substance use impacted your life?” The goal is to resolve the ambivalence that many people feel when they want to make a change but fear that they’re not ready. Motivational interviewing can help you solidify your goals to live substance-free and renew your motivation to do so successfully.

cognitive behavioural therapy

Continuum of Care

A full continuum of care is essential for drug and alcohol rehab to help clients focus on recovery and receive personalized treatment that suits their specific needs. In these facilities, clients step down to the next, less intensive level of care promptly as they recover. Fragmented care increases the likelihood that someone will fall through the cracks between treatment programs. Missing supportive care can lead to relapse, overdose and other difficult outcomes.

Broadly speaking, a full continuum of care includes:

Medical Detox

The client detoxes from drugs with medical staff available around the clock to treat withdrawal symptoms.  After the initial assessment, you’ll go through the detoxification process. Detox is the process of removing drugs or alcohol from your body after prolonged use. Though this can be a difficult process for some, it’s important to cleanse your body of these substances so that you’re ready both physically and mentally for the work that lies ahead in rehab.

If you suddenly stop using a substance that has a high potential for dependency it can be very dangerous, hence the need for medical supervision.

Inpatient or Residential Treatment

The client lives onsite and attends addiction treatment full-time, including group and individual therapy, medical care, and holistic therapies. This is a type of rehab that offers 24-hour care in a residential setting. Stays tend to last between one and three months. Socialization with staff and other residents is part of the treatment, as are group therapy sessions, individualized therapy sessions, and educational programs on mental health, addiction, and nutrition.

Outpatient Treatment

The client lives at home or in a sober living community while attending regular treatment at the facility. This often includes multiple intermediate levels of care, like partial hospitalization and intensive outpatient programs.

You’ll attend many of the same types of programs that residential treatment centers offer (therapy sessions and educational courses), but you don’t live at the treatment center.  Treatment can be from three to six hours a day.  Patients often graduate to outpatient treatment after inpatient rehab.

Aftercare Services

The client attends support group meetings, uses a relapse prevention plan developed with their treatment team, and has access to a variety of recovery resources.

Aftercare and Family Involvement

Addiction can damage relationships with friends, family members, partners, and loved ones. Family or couple’s therapy can be an important part of treatment, as it addresses communication issues and creates the opportunity to heal during treatment and throughout recovery.

The recovery process does not end when a client leaves an addiction treatment facility. Though rehab can help create a foundation for success, that foundation still needs regular maintenance through aftercare programs to avoid relapse.  A reputable rehab creates customized aftercare plans for each client and provides a helpful teletherapy service for ongoing support and a wealth of recovery information. Aftercare services help clients continue the long-term recovery process by giving them the resources they need to succeed.

couple’s therapy

Accommodations and Amenities

Though the treatment itself is the most important aspect of a facility’s offerings, a calm, relaxing and therapeutic environment can play a large role in a person’s recovery. Amenities can help soothe clients who are in the midst of difficult situations. You may want to search online for pictures of facilities and lists of amenities and accommodations. Each facility’s location pages should offer a list of available amenities, which can include fully equipped gyms, outdoor sports areas, recreational therapy, lounge areas and computer labs.

Cost and Insurance Coverage

Expert care and cost will be the two biggest factors to consider when determining where to go for help. It’s important to note that continuing an addiction is always costlier — not only financially but also physically, mentally, and emotionally — than seeking treatment.

Many treatment facilities are covered under health insurance policies, but it’s important to be certain that your insurance will be accepted before attending rehab. For most locations, you can verify your insurance online directly through the facility.

If you do not have insurance, many locations can provide treatment on a sliding scale or create a payment plan that works with your financial situation. There are also free or province-funded clinics that can provide addiction treatment at an affordable price or at no cost.

health insurance policies

Getting Help

If you are coping with a substance use disorder, it is crucial that you get help. It’s natural to feel intimidated or scared. But remember that rehab is meant to help you achieve lasting recovery. If you’re considering rehab as an option for recovery, you can start by contacting Thousand Islands Rehab Centre. We will take the time to get to know you and learn about the circumstances surrounding your addiction, and then we will put together a fully customized addiction treatment program that is tailored to your unique needs.

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