How to Find a Mental Health Treatment Center that Fits Your Needs

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If you’ve it’s time to receive mental health treatment services or substance abuse treatment, you may wonder how to determine which treatment centers or drug rehab centers will fit you or your loved one’s needs.

This is a valid question and one worth asking, as not all treatment facilities operate in the same way. Here are some things to think about and discuss before deciding on mental health services and a treatment facility.

Which level of Mental Health Treatment is necessary?

It’s important to determine what kind of treatment is needed. Mental health treatment is going to look different from substance abuse treatment for drug and alcohol addiction. A co-occurring facility can meet both mental health and substance abuse treatment needs. 

A substance abuse treatment center focuses primarily on how to be successful in recovery but might not be able to meet the needs of addressing other mental health disorders. On top of that, not all addictions are the same. For instance, is substance abuse the primary issue, or is someone seeking addiction treatment for other behaviors such as gambling addiction or eating disorders? 

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There are some wonderful rehabilitation centers around the country focused on eating disorders, gambling addiction, and behavioral, process addictions like these. However, due to the different natures of the disorders, seeking treatment for an eating disorder at a substance abuse addiction treatment facility would be inappropriate for its unique challenges.

All of these questions are important to ask, as there are many different treatment facilities designed and tailored to fit the needs of individuals, but the individual needs must be understood first. Some facilities will not admit a person with a co-occurring disorder, while others may admit mild co-occurring disorders but not major mental health concerns. 

It is crucial that if someone has co-occurring needs, they be placed in an environment in which substance use disorders and other types of mental illness can be evaluated. Some facilities are not equipped to deal with specific complexities of other addictions and may require a referral to another provider.

This information should be readily available when calling facilities for treatment information, and if necessary, they should be able to provide referrals.

Will it be the most beneficial and least restrictive?

Level of care is a term often used among professionals in the treatment community but might not be as well known to people entering treatment. Entrance into a treatment system can sometimes leave people feeling confused. This is an unfortunate reality, but with some education, it can be successfully navigated. 

Upon entering services, feel free to talk with your intake coordinator or other professionals involved in your care about what can be expected, what the next steps are, and how one works through the different stages of treatment. For better understanding, the level of care refers to what type of care is most appropriate for you.

There is a lot of consideration that goes into this decision, but it ultimately should be the least restrictive environment for the most amount of benefit. A good resource to understand what the levels of care are and what a lot of treatment providers use universally when deciding the appropriate level of care is the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) criteria.

Should I choose inpatient or outpatient Mental Health Treatment ?

Some of the most common terms that people would be familiar with are inpatient and outpatient treatment facilities. At the highest level of care, there is a medically managed inpatient option. This is usually reserved for individuals who also have health treatment needs that may warrant immediate medical attention with minimal prior notice. There are not a lot of these types of facilities, as such intense services are typically not in high demand. In some cases, medically managed inpatient facilities will be attached to the local hospital.

With many inpatient treatment facilities, there is a detox component that a client will first enter before beginning the inpatient treatment. Detox services will vary depending on the condition a person arrives in and what substances they will be detoxing. Inpatient treatment is also commonly referred to as a residential treatment facility, rehab center, or drug rehab.

Outpatient centers might be part of a community health agency or offered as a lower level of service through the inpatient facility. Outpatient centers usually require the client to meet certain criteria that allow them to have less contact with their treatment provider between treatment services. Typically, more responsibility is placed on the client in this situation, as they are expected to tend to their needs in between sessions.

Appropriate level of care

The decision on the appropriate level of care will be made during an initial assessment performed regardless of which entry point is used to get into services. This means that if you go to an outpatient behavioral health clinic and it is discovered that you may need a higher level of care, a referral will be made to the appropriate treatment centers.

There are other levels of care beyond inpatient and outpatient, but these two are the most common. Regardless of the level of care and treatment program, you may enter, all treatment will be designed using treatment plans as a driver for therapeutic intervention. All treatment plans should be collaborative and are intended to have the client and the treatment provider work towards the same goal.

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Is my insurance accepted?

Unfortunately, the ability to pay for treatment can be a barrier to seeking help. There is a lot of misunderstanding and misinformation regarding what is and is not covered regarding mental health or substance abuse treatment. To complicate matters further, insurance companies have varying allowances and criteria they use to decide whether a claim will be approved or denied.

There is no doubt that this is a complicated issue. One of the best ways to confirm what an insurance provider will pay for would be to call the facility and ask. Most, if not all, intake coordinators will be able to answer questions about what insurance is accepted at their facility and what such insurance will cover.

There is also a misconception regarding clients who do not have insurance. People generally assume that if they do not have insurance, there is no possible way treatment would be covered. Every county, city, and state will have its own rules surrounding this situation. 

While there can be no definitive statement on this topic that would cover every possible situation, some communities can pay for treatment services for those that either has no insurance or are underinsured. Call the treatment facility to answer the question as to whether your community has these options.

Where is their treatment located?

Another piece to consider is whether you want to remain close to home if entering a long-term residential treatment facility. There are two different schools of thought on this topic. One take is that completing treatment closer to home is helpful because you may already have a good support network for when you get out. The other school of thought prefers completing treatment somewhere else because it reduces the likelihood of leaving against medical advice because it would be difficult to get home otherwise.

There is also a subset of people who might travel to different states to seek treatment. This might be driven by many different and diverse reasons, and in some cases, the needs of a person might only be able to be met at a facility in another state. In other cases, people choose to complete treatment in another state because they want a fresh start and plan to stay in that state upon discharge. There really is no right or wrong answer to this question, but it is something worth considering when looking at finding a treatment option that best fits your needs.

Is this Mental Health Treatment program the right fit for me?

Regardless of which treatment program is chosen, there needs to be a good fit. The person going into treatment needs to feel safe, comfortable, and welcome. Just as there are many treatment facilities, there are also many professionals working within those agencies. Each one of these professionals has dedicated a large amount of time to make sure your needs are met.

There are situations when an assigned clinician might not be the best fit for the client. This could be for several reasons: perhaps there is a personality clash, or maybe a client would prefer a clinician of a specific gender or background to work with, or perhaps a clinician with a background education in treating extensive trauma history might be needed to address the client’s needs. 

The point is, whatever the reason, you are able to work with a treatment facility and provider that meet your therapeutic needs. Never be afraid to speak up if you feel a transfer to another therapist would be a better fit.

Start Proven, Personal Treatment with The Haven

If you or a loved one has decided that now is the time to investigate treatment options, The Haven offers comprehensive treatment for people with substance use and alcohol use disorders. In addition to medically supervised detox, we offer different therapies in a residential setting and aftercare services to help support a successful recovery. Contact us today for more information.

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