Those struggling with a mental illness know how difficult it can be to stick to a treatment plan. You may be lacking a support network or have other needs that require more care than an average person. If you need help to manage a mental health or substance use disorder, perhaps the best program to be in is a residential treatment program.
What Is a Residential Treatment Program?
A residential treatment program is when you stay in a treatment facility for a specified amount of time. It can be a short stay or a longer one. How long you stay depends on the severity of your disorder and what is required to treat you. It may seem scary to leave home, but residential treatment gives you the best chance for a lasting recovery.
What Is Treated in Residential Treatment Programs?
Most people think of substance abuse disorder (SUD) when considering a residential treatment facility, but it is not the only thing that can be treated there. Other disorders include:
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Personality disorders
How to Find Residential Treatment Programs
Not all places that treat mental health disorders offer a residential treatment program. It’s up to you or your advocate to look and see what is available in your area. Those who don’t offer residential treatment will sometimes refer a patient to another facility. If you struggle with a dual diagnosis, specialized residential treatment options are designed to treat that particular disorder. The National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers offers a search engine to look for residential treatment providers. If you or a loved one feels they may benefit from staying in a treatment facility, be sure to ask about it from a trusted health care provider.
What to Expect in Residential Treatment
What does it mean to stay in a residential treatment facility? It means giving you a safe place to learn life skills and manage your symptoms. When you are at home, you may become stressed by things such as jobs, chores, noise, and other factors that come with the public. A residential treatment facility takes you away from the stress so you can have time to focus solely on your recovery. Staying at a treatment center has the added benefit of allowing you to escape triggers that negatively affect your mental health.
A residential treatment facility is a mix between a dorm and a hospital. You will stay in a room where you may sleep and relax, sometimes with or without a roommate. You will also attend treatment sessions throughout the day, eat meals, and have leisure time to yourself. Some treatment facilities offer other positive things to do, such as classes and outdoor activities. Doctors and therapists will be around at all times and are ready to help when they are needed.
What Treatments Are Used in a Residential Treatment Program?
Residential treatment programs feature many different kinds of treatments to help you improve your quality of life. Individual psychotherapy sessions, also known as talk therapy, are beneficial to help you understand your feelings and work through difficult issues. You may participate in group therapy, where you can find support and solidarity with others with the same disorder. If you need medication to assist in your treatment, you can trust to have knowledgeable doctors available to administer treatment and help manage medication. This is especially important if you struggle with SUD and may need medication to help with the withdrawal process.
Some facilities offer more holistic approaches to healing, such as nature walks, yoga, and gardening. The most valuable program happens at the end of your stay, where you will be helped to transition back to the public. With the skills learned, you will have the ability to resume your life with better tools to cope with challenges.
Residential Treatment Programs Offer Freedom
Residential treatment programs have been stigmatized as lacking a sense of freedom. As a client in the program, you still have a right to choose and let your desires be known. Remember that you can leave anytime and have the right to stop treatment if you feel it is not helping you. Sometimes, it takes trial and error to find a treatment that helps. Getting the help you need should not be a fearful process, and at a residential treatment facility, you will be supported throughout the process.
Every treatment center is different, so it is important to ask questions before deciding if it is the right kind of treatment for you. In the end, it is very helpful, and many people have achieved recovery by choosing this type of program. Everyone deserves a safe place to heal, including yourself and those you love.
Figuring out if you could benefit from a residential treatment program can feel like an intimidating process. There are many things to consider before committing, and it can be daunting to figure out the details on your own. At Acera Health in Costa Mesa, California, we take the guesswork out of the process to make your treatment as stress-free as possible. Every client is given specified care to put them on the road to recovery by compassionate and knowledgeable staff. At our residential treatment facilities, you can recover in a stress-free environment, giving yourself time to heal at your own pace. You don’t have to walk your journey alone when specialized professionals are waiting to assist you. If you are struggling with a mental health or substance use disorder and don’t know how to take the first step, call (949) 647-4090 today for more information.
Melody is a highly skilled proactive clinical administrator, with more than 17 years of experience serving the community in the behavioral health field.
Her clinical management career started in 2011 as a compliance manager and program director. In 2018, she became an executive as chief clinical officer (CCO). She is a seasoned licensed marriage & family therapist.