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4 Essential Tips for Attending Inpatient Drug Rehab

Inpatient Drug Rehab
Negotiating Inpatient Drug Rehab: Coming to terms with addiction and one's recovery process.
Inpatient Drug Rehab
Negotiating Inpatient Drug Rehab. Stock image.

Negotiating Inpatient Drug Rehab: Coming to terms with addiction and one’s recovery process and staying the course survivor’s manual. 

‘What fascinates me about addiction and obsessive behavior is that people would choose an altered state of consciousness that’s toxic and ostensibly destroys most aspects of your normal life, because for a brief moment you feel okay.’

Moby, U.S. singer/songwriter

Having little or no idea of what the coming day may bring is a pretty usual train of thought for an addict. That train always ends at the same place, too. It goes absolutely no further than the first fix. End of the line. Literally. What happens next? Pretty much in the lap of the God…

You might think any addict’s day will be the same, identical, in fact, to yesterday.

Get high – The End.

That’s hardly ever the case, however. Noted one recovered addict acquaintance of this author, ‘During my days of actively abusing the narcotic delights of coke, meth and brightly-colored pills, no day was the same. The only thing that was a stable feature of my day, apart from the drugs themselves obviously, was where I’d wake up. Nearly all the time, it was somewhere I didn’t expect it to be. Now, that was a regular occurrence’.

Continuing, ‘I had an apartment until I was evicted. Why pay good cash for that? Cash I could spend getting high? I hardly ever slept there, anyway. Then I lost my job, too’. 

‘Towards the end of those days of substance abuse, post-eviction and post-termination of contract, I was a bum, with no house keys, no safe haven, without a permanent home. Eventually, no cash either. So I stole, lied, cheated to get the next fix. Yes, every single day was always different. The coming day was always some mad mystery’.

Continues the former addict, I got out just in time, thank the heavens. A close friend (who I partly hated, to be honest, because when it came to drugs, they could take it or leave it, whereas I could never leave it alone) went and spoke to my family. I’d always lied to them, telling them I just enjoyed a good time. When they finally knew the truth (no apartment, no job, no hope), they threw me in the family saloon, drove to the next state over, and threw me into inpatient rehab for drug addicts. Truth be told, they probably saved my life that day’. 

That was over 8 years ago now according to my recovered addict friend. According to Tim (name changed)- the rehab, ‘got me clean and sober and taught me the tools I needed to stay that way and stay that way I have done. Relapse felt like a dark shadow just behind me in those early days and months, but then my life began to change for the better, I understood drugs for what they were, and so here I am today’. 

Before we look at these 5 Essential Tips for Attending Inpatient Drug Rehab, here’s what you can actually expect from being in rehab:

     * Evaluation: To assist clinical staff in devising an individual plan for your time there

     * Detoxification: To remove all substance toxins from your body under the watchful eye of medical staff (yes, there will be withdrawal symptoms and side effects)

      * Psychological treatments: Group and individual therapy, psychotherapy, and educational classes to help in your recovery, eg. nutrition, exercise, and relaxation techniques, like meditation

      * Medical treatment: To provide you with medication to ease withdrawal symptoms/cravings, and to treat any mental health disorders

      * Transition: To provide you with the tools you need to stay healthy on leaving the facility

      * Aftercare: To provide you with an aftercare plan, possibly including an outpatient program, help in finding a sponsor and/or a support group, and individual and/or group therapy

So, here you go – your 5 Essential Tips for Attending Inpatient Drug Rehab:

1. Confront Your Denial

Addiction’s greatest weapon? Simple self-denial. Sometimes it can take months, probably years before an addict can accept they have a problem with substance abuse. Just simple self-denial. It’s why substance addiction can kill.

Even now, even if you have the rehab booked, your place there assured, somewhere in the dark recesses of your mind, you will be thinking, ‘Am I really that bad? Do I really need this? Is this all that’s left to me?’

 Yes, yes, and yes. Confront your denial. Addiction makes you lie to yourself.

2. The Correct Attitude

To combat this self-denial, and to approach rehab with the right attitude, you need to tell yourself that, even if you personally believe rehab to be people with worse addictions than you, others truly believe you need to do this. One of the best attitudes is to approach it with the view, ‘Give it a chance, and see what happens.’

3. Detox is Painful

Detox is short, you’ll have medication to assist the process, you’re perfectly safe while it happens, but know this – it is painful. Short, yes, but painful. Some symptoms will also feel like they last beyond the process. But getting through the process will require substance abuse users being 100% honest with the attending staff, and telling them to what degree they might feel uncomfortable.

4. Don’t Binge Before

That’s the temptation, right? To say goodbye to the substances that have been such a part of your life? Please, try not to do this. There is even the possibility of overdose and, yes, death. On the flipside, don’t go cold turkey thinking that you’re starting the process early. That’s also risky. Any addiction professional will tell you – stay as you are, the treatment, your treatment, will begin soon enough. Wait for the experts.

Go Easy

Rehab is vital for most addicts, for a shot at survival, and a chance at recovery, and the opportunity to at last live life in a way they can at last control, no longer at the mercy of foil-wrapped lumps, white powder, and differently colored tablets, and a serious amount of liquor to wash it all done with. 

The 4 essential tips to get the most out of rehab – Confront Your Denial, The Correct Attitude, Detox is Painful, and Don’t Binge Before. Follow these 4 nuggets of advice, and let the rehab work its magic, and your only regret might be why didn’t you do it sooner.

What advice would you give to addicts about to attend rehab, and finally embark upon their journey to recovery? Please, feel free to share any thoughts or experiences with a comment below. Thanks. Lastly, go easy and good luck.