A Guide to Choosing an Addiction Treatment Center for Your Teen

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Did you know that there are more than 8,000 addiction treatment centers around the country? More than 240,000 people work at these centers to help people with their addictions.

With so many different options for an addiction treatment center for your teen out there, how are you supposed to know which option is the right choice for your situation? Although choosing an addiction treatment center can be complicated, there are tips that can help you simplify the process.

With the principles in this article, you will be able to identify your options and narrow them down with as much efficiency as possible. So what kind of steps should you take as you go through the addiction treatment center selection process?

Read on to learn all about the most vital things to focus on to find the right addiction treatment center for your team!

Know What You Want From Your Treatment Options

One of the biggest mistakes that people make is jumping to the final stage of the selection process right away. If you start your search by spending an hour doing a deep dive into the particulars of a specific treatment center, then you may end up wasting a lot of time.

Taking a little time in advance to reflect and plan can help you keep the selection process much briefer. Before you start looking at specific treatment centers, sit down and make a list of what you are looking for in an addiction treatment center. You might want to add to this list over multiple days as new ideas come to mind.

Don’t think that you will remember every item without writing it down. Taking your time to make this list will also help you during other stages of the selection process.

As you make your list, you can also go back and identify which items on your list are deal breakers. One of the greatest things about having your deal breakers identified is that you can quickly eliminate from consideration any addiction treatment centers that don’t meet one of your deal breaker preferences.

This way, you can save a lot of time by checking if each addiction treatment center you consider provides what you require and then moving on to other options if one option does not. For example, you will only want to spend time considering treatment centers with proper licensing.

However, it is also important to list your less crucial preferences. You might end up with multiple addiction treatment centers that meet your required standards. At that point, it will be helpful to have a list of the bonuses you would like a treatment center to have if possible.

So what kinds of things should you be considering as you make your list?

The Right Location for the Sobriety Journey

One of the biggest ways to hasten the search process is by choosing a geographical area. If you are only willing to pick a treatment center that is within 100 miles, that eliminates from consideration all of the other centers in the world. On the other hand, if you are willing to pick a treatment center that is hundreds or even thousands of miles away, you will go about the search process differently.

Some people find that distance is a perk rather than a problem. Depending on the situation of the recovering addict, it can help them to feel a certain distance from the people they know nearby.

On the other hand, this is the exact wrong approach in other situations. For some recovering addicts, being as close as possible to supportive friends and family is crucial.

Think about your own preferences as far as location is concerned. Consider setting a preferred distance and a deal breaker distance. 

Inpatient and Outpatient Options

Another huge item to consider is what kind of treatment you are hoping to get from your chosen addiction treatment center. Not every center provides the same options for treatment. In particular, it is vital to understand the difference between inpatient and outpatient treatment.

Outpatient treatment allows people to leave the center and go about their everyday lives. Patients only visit for a certain number of hours each day and week.

In some cases, this is the only possible option for a recovering addict. If they have obligations they need to attend to, they may not be able to afford spending weeks or months focusing only on their recovery.

On the other hand, inpatient treatment provides people with a place to live while they are receiving treatment. There are two main kinds of inpatient treatment.

The first kind is short-term inpatient treatment. In this kind of treatment, patients will live on location for somewhere between two and six weeks.

However, this is not always enough. In other cases, people receive long-term inpatient treatment that lasts between 6 and 12 months.

Even if you hear that a certain addiction treatment center does amazing work, it may not suit your needs if it does not provide the inpatient or outpatient option you are looking for. Make sure you understand what kind of treatment you are seeking and do not waste time investigating centers that do not provide it.

Addiction Treatment Styles

This is also a good time to think about the style of treatment you want your teen to receive at your chosen addiction treatment center.

Some centers use a religious or spiritual focus for treatment. Others are careful to only use treatment methods that have been validated by scientific studies. Some provide both kinds of treatment.

However, there is an incredible range of detail in the different kinds of treatment styles you can find at different addiction treatment centers. One of the most popular and successful kinds of therapy in the world is cognitive behavioral therapy. Finding a center that offers this kind of treatment should be easy and might be the right choice if you want to use a successful scientific approach.

On the other hand, religious and spiritual treatment methods are somewhat less standardized and regular. If you are choosing an addiction treatment center with this kind of treatment approach, you might need to spend longer understanding the details of their particular way of providing religious or spiritual treatment.

Think About Your Budget

The last major item to consider adding to your list of preferences is your budget. As you think about your budget, try to set a firm budget number. Many people make the selection process difficult by choosing loose budget numbers.

These loose numbers tend to represent what people are hoping they can pay for treatment. Then, people often see that there are great options that cost more than what they were hoping to pay.

At this point, people often adjust their budget number one or multiple times. Once this happens, their budget number is almost useless.

On the other hand, a firm budget number does not represent what you hope to pay. It represents the actual maximum you are willing to pay.

Having a firm budget number will help you throughout the selection process. Every time you see a center that is outside your budget, you can remove it from further consideration.

Make a List of Options

Once you have thought through your preferences, you can start considering addiction treatment centers. Some people are concerned about looking at too many options. As a result, they only end up looking at a few different centers.

However, the more centers you consider, the better the chance that you will find the best one for your situation. The principles in this article will help you sort through many different options quickly. As a result, you can add as many options to your list as you like without worrying that it will extend your selection process too much.

The easiest way to find your options might be to use a search engine. The problem with this method is that it does not provide customized recommendations. It shows the same options to everyone despite their individual differences.

That does not mean that you cannot use this method to add some candidates to your list. However, if you want the best candidates possible, consider speaking with people you know and trust.

Ask for Tips From People You Know

Think of the people you know who have some experience with addiction treatment centers. They can be valuable sources of knowledge as you proceed through your selection process.

Consider reaching out to anyone who might be able to give you helpful advice. It is also a good idea to share your list of preferences with them. The better they understand what you are looking for, the better their recommendations will be.

If there are some preferences you do not want to share, you can always exclude them.

When people are recommending addiction treatment centers, you can also ask them about centers to avoid. If you want to choose your center faster, it always helps to be able to remove some of your candidates from consideration.

If you have a list of options from a search engine, you can also share them with the people you speak with. Talk to them about which options seem more appealing to you and why you like them or not. All of this can help them better understand how applicable their own recommendations are to your situation.

Look at Reviews

With this done, you should have plenty of addiction treatment center candidates to choose between. If you have not already done so, you can quickly scan your list and compare it to your preferences.

You might find a center that is too far away, costs too much or doesn’t have what you are looking for. If you find options like these, you can remove them so that you don’t waste time studying them more.

You may still have many options left on your list. One fast way to sort through them is by looking at addiction treatment center ratings.

It is important to remember that ratings are an imperfect way of measuring the quality of a center. Choosing the center with the highest rating is not a reliable way of finding the right treatment center for you.

However, there is a good chance that the centers with the worst ratings are not the best choice for your situation. By looking at overall reviews, you can remove several more options from consideration to help you speed through the selection process. So what do you do with your remaining candidates?

Final Sorting

Consider reading through two or three reviews for each of your remaining candidates. As you do, note down which treatment centers seem like quality candidates. Once this is done, you can go back through your list a second time and focus only on the top candidates you identified.

Then, you can read several more reviews for your top candidates to help you choose between them.

At the end of this process, you may have multiple addiction treatment centers that all provide what you are looking for. This will come in handy if your top choice doesn’t work out for some reason. You can always turn to one of your backup candidates.

Understand How to Choose an Addiction Treatment Center

We hope that the tips in this article will help you find the right addiction treatment center for your teen and your own unique situation. Many people make the serious mistake of rushing through the process of choosing the right addiction treatment center. Taking the time to choose the treatment center that suits your own needs best is an investment that will more than pay for itself in the long run.

To learn more about how to find the right addiction treatment center for you, reach out and get in touch with us here at any time!