How Do Residential Treatment Centers Help People with Drug Problems?

Residential treatment centers are very effective because of the approach that they take. Rather than focusing on just one aspect of what people need, they are able to cover a multitude of them. When people have a problem it usually affects them both physically and mentally. It takes time to peel back the layers and get to the core of the issues. From there positive changes can occur that will influence a better life for that person from that point on.


At a residential treatment center, there is a great deal of structure. Those that stay there quickly catch on to what will be taking place on any given day. They have certain times to get up, for eating, for therapy, for education, for recreation, free time, and for lights out. This structure is a very important part of being able to change the behaviors and replace them with ones that work well.

The longer a person goes without the use of drugs in their daily life, the faster they see that they really don’t need them. Such a revelation is a way for them to start looking forward to other elements of their life. That can be what breaks them free from the binds of drug use.

Detox Help

Many individuals do realize that they have a drug problem. They work hard to fight it but when they stop taking the drug their mind and body become very cruel to them. The withdrawal symptoms often push them to go take another round of the drug. It is a cycle that they are often ashamed of. With a residential treatment center program though help is offered so that the detox process isn’t so difficult. It can take up to 7 days for all of the drugs used to be out of the system completely.

Remove Outside Influences

A residential treatment center is a safe haven away from the influences of the outside world. That can make a huge difference when it comes to the level of success that someone is able to experience. The structure that they have in the facility is very different from outside life. They can get away from the peer pressure and the stress that often trigger them into drug use.

At the same time, they can’t get their drugs when they are in the residential treatment center. Their willpower may be all gone, but they are also not able to go out and buy the product they want as they would if they were in an out patient treatment program. That is a significant difference that has a strong weight when it comes to the success of such programs.


One of the most effective methods of treatment for drug problems is counseling. With an out patient program someone may or may not show up for such activities. In a residential treatment center the counseling is part of the daily routine – both individually and as a group. There is no way that someone at the facility can miss any of the sessions. This helps to ensure they get the most out of such treatment.

Knowing they are in a safe environment, they are free from drug use, and that they have support, many drug users do open up in counseling. They want to be able to continue their life without it. Part of counseling involves setting goals to help ensure that drugs aren’t part of the lifestyle again.

Being about to explore the various triggers that have led the individual down a path of drug use is very important. Finding solutions to those reasons will help to remove such triggers from being a major influence later on. Some people have a good idea of what triggered the drug use such as chronic back pain.

For others, they may not have felt accepted into a group until they were using drugs socially. Dealing with the emotional connection to drug use is a part of why these programs work too. For example is someone has used drugs to feel good about themselves, then efforts have to be made to establish other methods of getting that same feeling.

It Takes Time

While residential treatment centers are very successful when it comes to helping people overcome drug use, it does take time. It isn’t an overnight process. The program needs at least 90 days to make a difference. It can take 6 months or even a year though for some individuals to reach the level of care they need before they are ready to leave the treatment program.

A design that moves along at the pace of the individual is important when it comes to residential treatment programs. This approach helps to reduce the number of people that will end up having to deal with drug use again later in life.

Here are additional resources you might be interested in:

What to Expect from a Residential Drug and Alcohol Treatment Program

Residential Treatment for Substance Abuse

How to Determine Success Rates at a Residential Treatment Facility

Do Residential Treatment Centers Work?

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