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What to Look For in an Addiction Recovery Center

Finding the right place to recover from substance use disorder can appear daunting. With many options available, it may be difficult to know where to turn, but it doesn’t have to be. This page will explore what steps to take in deciding on a rehab, what factors to consider, and suggestions for getting started. The road to recovery can begin today.

Finding the Right Addiction Treatment Center

A few steps may help identify the right treatment center. According to the Principles of Effective Drug Treatment, there is “no single treatment that is appropriate for everyone.”1(principles of effective treatment #2) So, identifying personal needs and preferences at the beginning can significantly assist any decision-making for recovery.

What Do I Need for Treatment

Figuring out what personal needs for treatment may require outside help. Speaking with a primary care doctor or undergoing a formal assessment with a mental health professional can secure a clear diagnosis and identify any other mental health conditions that should be addressed during treatment.1principles of effective treatment #9) If there are co-occurring disorders, finding a center that can offer concurrent treatment gives the person a better chance at successfully managing both.1(how do other mental disorders coexisting with drug addiction affect…)

Needs may also involve personal responsibilities, such as dependent children, that require arrangements before joining a rehab center, or medical conditions that call for particular staff or equipment to ensure safety throughout the duration of treatment. For example, some treatment centers are not equipped to treat women who are pregnant.

Goals for Treatment

Beginning recovery and maintaining sobriety is difficult, but finding personal motivation for treatment and identifying goals can help with perseverance.1(what helps people stay in treatment) Some potential questions to ask are:

  • Who am I doing this for?
  • Why do I want to be sober?
  • How is my substance use harming my life?
  • What benefits can I look forward to with recovery?
  • In what social, financial, or relational ways does addiction affect me?
  • What is the longest I have been sober?
  • What benefits do I have from continuing to use?

These questions may be difficult to answer, and they do not have to be answered before beginning treatment. In fact, behavioral therapy throughout treatment often plays a large role in helping a person answer these and other questions before discharge.1(principles of effective treatment #6) However, knowing some personal needs or preferences may help a person discern the most important factors when considering an addiction recovery center.

Factors to Consider for Alcohol or Drug Rehab

A person may encounter a wide variation of the type of services and experiences of an addiction recovery program. When deciding where to be treated, a person may consider the following factors:

  • Location: Would a rural or urban setting be most beneficial? Should a person stay local or travel out of state? For some, extra distance from people or places that were associated with substance use can aid recovery, but others may need familiarity to give them strength.
  • Inpatient versus Outpatient: Inpatient programs require a person to stay at the treatment center 24/7 for intensive therapy and supervision.1(long-term residential treatment) They are typically best for those with more severe conditions or additional needs.1(long-term residential treatment) Outpatient treatment can provide more flexible scheduling, and many levels of treatment are offered.1(outpatient treatment programs) People can often remain working or living at home, depending on the intensity of their treatment.1(outpatient treatment programs) While there may be a personal preference, the level of treatment should ultimately be determined by a professional based on the severity of the condition.
  • Specialized populations: Some treatment centers offer programs specifically tailored to people with past trauma, LGBTQ+ persons, women, men, ethnic minorities, particular substances of misuse, or other specified groups. These groups may provide additional support throughout the difficulties of recovery.
  • Medical Needs: Do I have a serious medical condition that requires regular intervention? Can my rehab of choice safely care for my other medical needs?
  • Co-occurring disorders treatment: Do I have a dual diagnosis? Have I been assessed? Does this or that rehab offer co-occurring disorders treatment?
  • Accreditation: Does this center have accreditation as an addiction recovery center? Are all the staff licensed or certified for the roles they are performing? Accreditation bureaus ensure that treatment centers under their stamp of approval are providing evidence-based treatments and quality services.
  • Impact and Size of Program: Finding a program with higher staff-to-patient ratios may be helpful in recovery. Fewer patients per staff member may allow a person to receive more personal and individualized care, thus ensuring a more tailored approach to treatment.
  • Length of Program: Good long-term outcomes depend on receiving an appropriate length of treatment.1(how long does drug addiction treatment usually last?) Finding a program that can provide an appropriate length of treatment for a given condition, which may be longer or shorter than “average,” can make the difference.
  • Insurance Coverage and Cost: Individuals should look into what services are included with a given insurance and what type of treatment programs are covered. Many sites can help check insurance coverage, and most rehab staff are willing to answer questions about coverage during the inquiry. Calling the insurance company is another option to clarify benefits.
  • Luxury or Executive Amenities: Some treatment centers are advertised as luxury or executive addiction centers. These locations are often more expensive and only accept private insurance or self-pay. However, they may offer unique therapeutic approaches, luxury chefs, private rooms, added discretion, or the ability to continue working while undergoing inpatient programs.

While all these factors are available for consideration, getting the help of any kind is still useful.1(alcohol addiction: combined with behavioral treatment) In fact, for alcohol use disorder, studies have shown that help of any kind, including or excluding medication or behavioral therapy, is the most important factor in predicting recovery.1(alcohol addiction: combined with behavioral therapy)

Can I Detox at Home?

It is possible to detox safely at home, but it is not always recommended. Detoxification is the process in which the body clears itself of alcohol or drugs during a period of abstinence.1(types of treatment programs) People seeking sobriety must undergo detox as the first stage in recovery.1(types of treatment) The process can be accompanied by unpleasant or life-threatening withdrawal symptoms, depending on the type of substance a person used.1(types of treatment)

Many addiction recovery centers offer medically managed withdrawal to minimize withdrawal symptoms and keep a person safe during detox.1(types of treatment programs) Withdrawal symptoms depend on the type of substance being cleansed from the body but may include:2(history and physical)

  • Changes in heart rate
  • Fever
  • Sweating
  • Seizures
  • Delirium
  • Hallucinations
  • Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Depression
  • Changes in sleep

Many withdrawal symptoms can be medically managed, thus keeping a person safe and helping maintain motivation for sobriety.1(types of treatment programs) However, detoxification only addresses the physical symptoms of addiction.1(types of treatment programs) Ongoing treatment to address the psychological affects and brain changes in addiction are necessary for long-term success.1(principles of effective treatment #10, types of treatment programs) Finding a treatment center that provides medically managed detox in addition to addiction treatment may make it easier to continue recovery with minimal interruption.

Getting Started with Substance Use Disorder Treatment

For those struggling with alcohol or drug addiction, healing can begin now. Virtue Recovery Center (VRC) is a nationally accredited drug and alcohol rehab program with locations in Texas, Oregon, and Arizona. Practicing evidence-based interventions, VRC is equipped to provide detox services, specialized recovery tracks, and dual diagnosis treatment needs for people with drug addiction and alcohol use disorder.

Contact Virtue Recovery Center today and find out if they could be the right fit. Each person’s road to recovery is unique. Begin with VRC and find out where it goes.


  1. National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2014, January). Principles of drug addiction treatment: a research based-guide (third edition).
  2. Gupta, M., Gokarakonda, S.B., & Attia, F.N. (2022, October). Withdrawal syndromesStatPearls Publishing.

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Are You Covered For Treatment?

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