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Healing, Strengthening, and Advancing the Lives of LGBTQ People Seeking Recovery

What to Expect in a Residential Treatment Program

young man smiling as therapist explains what to expect in a residential treatment program

Entering residential treatment for addiction can be intimidating. Everything about your life will suddenly look different. Previous routines or habits will be interrupted. You may worry about feeling disconnected from your family or friends. The trade-off, and it’s a worthy one, is that you will be engaging in life-changing addiction treatment.

Leaving addiction untreated could have serious, if not deadly, consequences. Prioritizing comprehensive treatment could determine the trajectory of the rest of your life. However, you need not walk in blind. Learning what to expect in a residential treatment program can alleviate any anxiety you feel before entering treatment and set you up for success.

Contact 888.903.9898 to learn more about West Hollywood, California residential addiction treatment options.

Residential Treatment Program Expectations

Knowing what to expect in a residential treatment program is important for making the most of the experience. First, expect to leave most things at home. Yes, you will be staying overnight for a month or even longer. But the residential stay is temporary. Don’t expect to move in with a bunch of your belongings or set up shop in a second home. You are there for treatment. While it’s not meant to be a sterile or cold environment, the goal at a residential treatment facility is sobriety and recovery.

While you may not get to feel the hominess of moving into a space you can truly make your own, residential addiction treatment will provide all the basic amenities you will need. Treatment centers often go above and beyond to make sure clients feel comfortable, safe, and supported, alongside having productive ways to spend their free time in treatment. A few things you should plan on packing for your residential stay include:

  • Comfortable clothes
  • Insurance information
  • Medication
  • A backpack or medium-sized bag of personal things like keepsakes or photos of loved ones
  • Basic hygiene items and toiletries

What to Expect in a Residential Addiction Program

Once you actually get to the treatment facility, what can you expect to experience? The first thing is often the biggest adjustment for people—no cellphones. Not every residential treatment center handles cell phones the same way. But most of them require people to lock up their cell phones during their treatment as it could otherwise prove a major distraction from treatment and recovery. That does not mean all contact with the outside world is eliminated. Family can visit, and phone calls home are possible.

Another of the first steps upon arriving at a residential treatment program is an assessment of goals. Trained staff will conduct a medical evaluation and gather your medical history. Yet just as important is the initial discussion of what your goals are in seeking residential treatment. Beyond goals for yourself, treatment staff will also share their goals for you. Those could be helping you develop healthier coping strategies, guiding you through a successful detox, or alleviating the mental health challenges that exacerbate your addiction.

Another thing you can expect from residential addiction treatment is daily structure. Rehab is not a vacation. It demands a lot of people. But the more you put into it, the more you will get out of it. So what kind of structure can you expect? The first element is time. During residential treatment, much of your daily schedule is mapped out for you, including wake-up and bedtimes.
Days are filled with therapy sessions, group meetings, exercise classes, educational resources, and more. You will have some free time but do not expect that to be the majority of your stay in residential addiction treatment.

Singular Focus on Recovery in Residential Treatment

It is worth expanding on the purpose behind the structure discussed in the previous section. It may feel overly controlling or rigid to have most of your minutes mapped out daily in treatment. Your meals will be planned, you will eat at certain times, and you have to get up in the morning when they tell you to. But what at first may appear negative is one of the greatest benefits of residential treatment. Taking all those other considerations off the table lets people in recovery focus purely on their recovery.

Moreover, addiction often introduces much chaos into people’s lives. Residential treatment prioritizes stability and structure because it helps people reclaim healthy habits and reorder the parts of their lives that addiction has disrupted. For instance, many people may not even be eating three quality meals per day because of their addiction. Or they may not be getting as much sleep as they need. Residential treatment implements the structure level it does to propel clients toward successful recovery.

Get Equipped With What to Expect in a Residential Treatment Program

Do you still have questions about what to expect in a residential addiction program? Contact 888.903.9898 to learn more about how best to prepare for residential addiction treatment.