Pros and Cons of Going Away to Rehab

Going Away to Rehab

Pros and Cons of Going Away to Rehab

So here you are, at a critical juncture in your life where you recognize you need help with substance or alcohol misuse. According to a March 2024 report released by USA Today, “ 48.7 million people nationwide struggle with substance abuse.” Alcohol is the most commonly used substance, followed closely by marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamines, and heroin. 

It’s courageous to take this first step toward sobriety. Now there are a couple more steps to complete, including deciding on whether to stay close to home or go somewhere else for addiction treatment. Here are some important considerations. 

Pros of Going Away to Rehab

A primary recommendation for recovery is treatment at an accredited residential care facility for alcohol use disorder (AUD) and substance use disorder (SUD). Individuals chose to leave home for rehabilitation for several reasons, including:

  • Type of treatment. A facility closer to home may not provide the comprehensive treatment approach for your or a loved one’s specific needs, have the optimum care plan for mental health issues contributing to addiction, or offer a full opportunity for a continuum of care necessary for effective recovery.
  • Fewer distractions. The seclusion of a long-distance facility often feels like an extended respite, with permission to focus entirely on self and individual well-being. This refuge from the challenges of daily life, whether as intensive as a toxic workplace or as mundane as doing the dishes, helps break the cycle of habitual use so healthy new behaviors are formed.
  • Distance from negative influences. Certain behavioral triggers for alcohol or substance misuse might be prompted by people, surroundings, or circumstances. If environmental influences are a concern for you, you might experience more success in a remote facility.
  • Privacy. It may be necessary to seek treatment in an unknown location if your reputation or employment status may be compromised.
  • Safety. Some people using illicit drugs may also be involved with dangerous criminals. Choosing a facility away from these interactions may be important for protection.

Another benefit people often cite for going away to rehab is that it reinforces a commitment to wellness. Abandoning the facility is not as easy, and impulsive decisions to quit treatment are often curbed by the complications of logistics and travel expenses.

Cons of Rehab Away From Home

Staying close to what’s familiar is a top priority for many people choosing rehabilitation services nearby. Other factors include:

  • Insurance coverage. While the Affordable Care Act requires commercial health plans to cover addiction treatment, policy conditions vary by plan and by state. It’s critical to confirm with your carrier as to whether you can obtain quality care outside of your state of residence without substantial out-of-pocket expenses.
  • Complications with employment leave. Technically, if you need a leave of absence from work to recover from SUD or AUD, treatment is protected under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) of 1993. However, certain employer and FMLA requirements may influence the final decision of care, such as a shorter inpatient stay nearby immediately followed by a partial hospitalization program through the same facility.
  • Need for family. Experts continue to recommend the benefit of whole family wellness for addiction treatment. If someone has loved ones close by, this makes it more convenient for visits, counseling sessions, and other stages of progressive assistance.
  • Not being able to leave family. If you have minor children or are a caregiver for another loved one, leaving home for 30–90 days may be an additional challenge. 
  • Accessible support systems. Another essential component of successful recovery is to have counselors, support groups, and other resources available for accountability, guidance, and reinforcement of healthy choices. A home-based network of connections may be easier for people than starting from scratch after being away.

Review Rehabilitation Facilities Carefully

The success of quality inpatient care, whether long-distance or local, depends greatly on individualized programs that take into account the:

  • Unique characteristics of your medical condition, including a thorough diagnosis of your AUD or SUD and co-occurring disorders such as mental health issues. 
  • Availability of additional treatment services necessary to aid the recovery process.
  • Interaction between your and the facility’s healthcare providers.
  • Design of a treatment plan and its purpose.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommends a series of critical questions to ask each rehab center you contact, including but not limited to:

  • Are the center’s treatment programs designed with scientific evidence?
  • How quickly can I get an appointment for an assessment?
  • Do treatment plans meet an individual’s specific needs and adapt as they progress with recovery?
  • What type of aftercare and other relapse prevention services are available?
  • Are the options for length of treatment conducive to success?

Ivory Plains: Providing Solutions for a Better Life

At our addiction rehabilitation program in Adair, Iowa, we want to give you every opportunity for success, and we fully understand how choosing treatment is a major turning point in your life. Our homelike atmosphere is just the start of your wellness journey, featuring a board-certified team of professionals offering an evidence-based structured approach for establishing a strong foundation in recovery. For however long you’re with us, trust that we’ll make your stay a healthful one. Talk to a member of our admissions team today to learn more. 

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