There have been many new developments in the area of substance abuse treatment. Many programs tout their program as being very successful without much in the way of statistical analysis to uphold that claim. It is often hard to determine if a program is successful once the client leaves the program. Clients may be reluctant to tell the surveyor the truth about their situations due to embarrassment or a desire to appear cured.
It is important to look at and evaluate the program based on the individual’s unique situation and needs. A posh environment may look inviting, but are the counselors licensed in the area of mental health? What are the credentials of the therapists? Can the facility offer dual diagnosis treatment and what does that mean? Typically facilities that offer dual diagnosis treatment must have therapists who are Licensed Professional Counselors (LPCs), Licensed Clinical Social Workers (LCSWs), Psychologists or Psychiatrists (including Physician Assistants and Nurse Practitioners) to evaluate, diagnose and treat other disorders such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder and many others.
Many Substance Abuse facilities are 12 step programs. The 12 step program has been in existence since the 1930s and has worked well for some individuals. The 12 step program does not require any special training to implement the program and thus is attractive to many facilities. While some individuals do well with a 12 step program, others feel that it is not in line with their values or needs. Some treatment facilities offer alternatives to the 12 step program which may work well for individuals who did not succeed with a 12 step program or did not feel it resonated with them. One such alternative is Smart Recovery. Smart Recovery requires that all facilitators attend substantial training and uses widely accepted therapeutic methods to assist individuals in the path to recovery from substance abuse. It has been used successfully, since the 1990s, in the United States and other countries. Smart Recovery works for many individuals who have either found that the 12 step program did not work for them or did not agree with the 12 step principles.
If you or a loved one is battling substance abuse/addiction, it is important to find the right facility to treat the problem. Talking with the facility is a first step in determining what feels right for you or your loved one. Sometimes, the fanciest facility may not offer the best treatment. So it is important to ask questions and get a feel for how the facility operates.