When Is Inpatient Alcohol Rehab the Answer for an Alcoholic?
When a loved one is struggling with alcoholism, it can be overwhelming to sort out what kind of treatment that loved one most needs.
Would inpatient alcohol rehab be the best choice?
We’re sharing here what you need to know.
First, a few words on alcoholism…
Someone suffering from alcoholism drinks despite the risks to his or herself and others and all the relationships and work they lose along the way. They don’t have control over their drinking, and (most of the time) they don’t acknowledge their drinking problem either.
Their body has come to depend on alcohol to keep itself in balance. They need to keep drinking. They can’t stop. But, really, they need to stop drinking.
It’s very unlikely that an alcoholic will stop drinking and recover on their own. In fact, it can be dangerous for them to attempt sobering up on their own because of how dependent their body, mind, and spirit have become on the very substance that they need to overcome.
And that’s where inpatient alcohol rehab comes in…
What is inpatient alcohol rehab?
Inpatient alcohol rehab is an intensive residential rehab program. The patient lives at a facility for the duration of treatment, for a mix of group and individual therapies. The focus all day every day is recovery.
The first step in inpatient alcohol rehab is a medically-assisted detox. Physicians monitor the patient while the toxins drain completely from the system, and then help them through the extreme ups and downs of withdrawals, even using medicine to curb the intense cravings when necessary. Withdrawals can be life-threatening, so it’s important to have this professional support.
What are the strengths of inpatient alcohol rehab?
The patient is guaranteed a stable and sober environment, with supervision and medical and emotional support around the clock, over an extended period of time. So the patient is away from many of their environmental triggers and has professionals guiding them through recovery.
Inpatient treatment also offers the patient the chance to be part of a community that is going through what they’re going through. There’s a patience and empathy that comes with this community that cannot be replicated anywhere else.
Even the most supportive family and friends aren’t wholly able to understand what the patient is going through unless they are a recovered alcoholic.
What are some challenges of inpatient alcohol rehab?
The patient has limited access to the world beyond the treatment center. But this change of environment and community could be exactly what the patient needs to detox, reset, and rebuild.
Since support from family and friends is critical to the patient’s recovery, recovery centers often find safe and productive ways to let family and friends encourage the patient from afar. So, while access is limited and monitored, patients do usually have some contact with family and friends.
The patient needs to be able to take time away from work, school, and family responsibilities. But this short-term break from those duties is a small price to pay now for a longer, healthier, and more productive life after treatment.
The cost of inpatient alcohol rehab is greater because you’re paying for room and board in addition to around-the-clock treatment. But, again, when the other price is your life, it’s hard to knock paying a premium for the best treatment possible.
How do I know if inpatient alcohol rehab is the right choice for my loved one?
Ask yourself these questions:
- Is my loved one living in a stable home environment?
- Is my loved one exposed to alcohol in their home environment?
- Is my loved one surrounded by family and friends who drink alcohol around them?
- Is my loved one suffering from other conditions that should be treated at the same time?
- Can my loved one afford to take time away from work?
- Will my loved one be forced to give up their job if they leave for treatment?
- Can my loved one’s family adjust to losing them to treatment for a time? How?
- Will my loved one be able to recover without intensive professional help?
- Did my loved one already try outpatient rehab? Did it work?
If your loved one won’t escape alcohol in their current environment, and you think it’s possible to fund your loved one’s stay at an inpatient program, we recommend it. Inpatient rehab can give the second chance at life that your loved one needs and deserves – and just think of all the other lives that a fresh start for this suffering loved one could touch.
What to look for in an inpatient alcohol rehab program…
It’s important to treat the patient’s physical and psychological dependence on alcohol. So look for the place that will treat the mind, body, and spirit.
It’s important to seek certified professionals. So, look for credentials:
Do the therapists and physicians have educational, professional, and life experiences that make them ready to help your loved one through this journey to recovery? Is the staff empathetic and approachable? Are the facilities well-kept, and will they support the work that your loved one needs to do?
It’s important to seek care that includes the family in the process. Family and friends should learn about what is ailing their loved one, and how their loved one is working through what’s been keeping them down. They should learn about the signs to look for, the things to say, and the ways to show support. And they should know to call again for additional professional help at the earliest signs of relapse once their loved one has returned home.
So, what sort of aftercare does the rehab center offer? How will the patient and family and friends have guidance for the transition home and critical period that follows?
We can help.
Midwest Recovery Centers provides cost-effective, quality treatment to the community of Kansas City. Our extended care program specializes in treatment for substance use disorders focusing on drug and alcohol dependence and addiction. And we understand that every person and family must be treated individually.
If you’re concerned about a loved one and want to learn more about what we do, please get in touch.
Reviewed and Assessed by
Taylor Brown, B.A.Com., MAADC II
Tim Coleman, M. of Ed.