9 Reasons Residential Treatment Is a Must to Overcome Alcoholism

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Effective treatment to help someone overcome alcoholism is multi-faceted and tailored to meet the needs of each individual. The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports specific principles to follow when considering addiction treatment.

Principles crucial to a successful recovery include having quick access to treatment, medically supervised detox, taking medications combined with behavioral therapies, a treatment that addresses co-occurring disorders, and staying in treatment long enough.

Treatment is a place to learn skills that prevent a relapse. A person will develop more skills to battle temptations and triggers the longer they spend in treatment, specifically residential treatment. But that’s not the only reason residential treatment is a must to overcome alcoholism.

Keep reading to learn more.

1. Medication Management

When entering treatment for alcoholism, participation in a detox program is the first step toward successful recovery. During detox, withdrawal symptoms can become unbearable for some. That’s why reputable detox programs offer medication assistance to alleviate cravings and physical discomfort.

Detox ends within two weeks, but not everyone is medically stable enough to enter an outpatient program. Transferring to a residential treatment program allows an individual to continue to receive treatment and medication under medical supervision. This enables treatment focus to be solely on recovery.

2. Self-Care

Trying to recover from alcohol use disorder at home, with outpatient services, means only focusing on healing part-time. The rest of the days or weeks consist of being a parent, child, sibling, co-worker, and all other life roles.

Residential treatment provides time away from work, family, friends, and stressors to engage in self-care fully. Learning to meet physical and mental health needs can be done in a calm, safe environment.

3. Safe Environment for Healing

Learning the skills needed to succeed in recovery must take place in an environment that supports the individual’s goals. Residential treatment programs recognize the importance of providing safety, supervision, and structure to help people progress in treatment.

Treatment environments provide education, accountability, and support.

4. Accountability and Support

If someone is new in recovery and is not held accountable, relapse becomes a more likely outcome. It becomes easier to justify reasons to drink again and rationalize why relapse is okay.

Through peer and professional support, residential treatment offers a level of accountability that does not allow someone to relapse. Peer support helps everyone realize alcoholism is a disease that affects many. It prevents loneliness in recovery. In treatment, other forms of support are available and included in a personalized treatment plan.

5. Personalized Treatment Plan

There is no one-size-fits-all treatment plan due to many factors, including dual diagnoses, triggers, past traumas, medical needs, readiness for recovery, family history, and many more. Personalized treatments consider all these variants to create the best, most comprehensive care plan.

Most treatment plans include cognitive-behavioral and dialectical-behavioral, relapse prevention, and life skills building courses. But alternative treatments are interchangeable based on someone’s needs. Examples include motivational interviewing, acupuncture, yoga, family therapy, and parenting skills.

Residential treatment programs implement programs successfully by providing structure, which can also be a teaching tool.

6. Structure

When in the throes of addiction, life is unstructured and chaotic. Meeting deadlines and keeping a set schedule is impossible because the focus is to continue drinking alcohol. Everything else happens when it happens.

In residential treatment, structure is a big deal. It is part of creating a new lifestyle in recovery, leaving very little time for relapse. Staying on a schedule provides a distraction from wanting to drink alcohol. Over time, having structure becomes a natural part of recovery and life in general.

While in treatment, much of the schedule includes education opportunities.

7. Education

Understanding why addiction happens and what it takes to maintain sobriety is something everyone in treatment needs to learn. Educational classes provide the answers to why and how.

Specialists teach skills in communication, conflict resolution, addiction, relapse prevention, setting boundaries, and creating a healthy lifestyle.

Taking a class on topics like these becomes more beneficial when implementing new skills.

8. Practice Living an Alcohol-Free Lifestyle

Residential treatment is a protected environment. But it still provides opportunities to implement the new skills.

Those receiving treatment can practice interacting with others, self-care, setting boundaries, and dealing with internal and external conflicts. The more time a person spends practicing, they will develop a stronger skill set to help maintain an alcohol-free lifestyle.

Part of maintaining recovery long-term is creating a plan of action for life after residential treatment. Having an aftercare plan and sticking to it gives the individual an edge over temptations to relapse.

9. Planning for Aftercare

Research shows that continuing care after leaving residential treatment helps people maintain sobriety. The longer someone stays in some form of therapy, the higher chances of success.

Creating an aftercare plan is done with the help of a therapist. Typical aftercare treatments include intensive outpatient counseling, individual therapy, family therapy, support groups for mental health, and 12-Step Recovery programs.

Aftercare planning doesn’t stop there, however. It can also include career counseling and employment assistance, legal advice, case management, drug testing, life coaching, financial planning, academic pursuits, and finding ways to get involved in the community.

Some reports claim that between 40-60 percent of people will relapse at some point. That also means 40-60 percent will not relapse and instead stay sober for the rest of their lives.

You can be in the group that is successful in recovery. You can start this journey today at Haven Detox, a premier private program in West Palm Beach. Together, we will create a plan that helps you live an alcohol-free life.

Contact us by email at info@havendetoxnow.com or call us at 561-328-8627. You can visit us at 1325 Haverhill Road, West Palm Beach, FL, 33417.


NIDA. 2019, January 17. Treatment Approaches for Drug Addiction DrugFacts. Retrieved from https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/treatment-approaches-drug-addiction

McKay J. R. (2009). Continuing care research: what we have learned and where we are going. Journal of substance abuse treatment, 36(2), 131-145. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2670779/

National Institute on Drug Abuse (2020). Drugs, Brains, and Behaviors: The Science of Addiction. Treatment and Recovery. Can Addiction Be Treated Successfully? https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugs-brains-behavior-science-addiction/treatment-recovery

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