What Happens In Rehab

Many people contact services for help with their addiction, some chose to go to rehab, but what is it, what will happen in rehab? We hope to help you through some of the questions that you may have, whether rehab is for you or someone else you know.

Making the decision to get help can feel very overwhelming, jumping in to the unknown, feeling fearful and anxious. These are all ‘normal’ worries.

What is a Residential Rehab like?

Residential rehabs are a place to help you overcome your addiction, whether it be alcohol, drugs (either illicit or prescribed medication), gambling, love and sex addiction, eating, or any other addiction which you feel has taken over your life. Rehabs offer you a safe and confidential place to start to address the issues in your life which have become unmanageable, maybe destructive, and aid you back on to a road of recovery.

There are different styles of treatment offered in rehab, such as 12 Step, person centred, holistic and ‘Therapeutic Community’, or a combination. The 12 Step approach to dealing with addiction is offered world- wide, and has shown to be a popular choice for many. It follows a set of principles in guiding people towards achieving abstinence. Depending on whether you are seeking help for alcohol addiction, drug addiction, gambling addiction, there will be a 12 Step meeting for you, such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), Narcotics Anonymous (NA), Cocaine Anonymous (CA), Gamblers Anonymous (GA). Other meetings are also available to support people through sex addiction, eating disorders as well as help for families and children of people in addiction.

If you are physically dependant on drugs or alcohol you will be assessed, most times by a nurse or experienced counsellor and will be seen by a doctor. You will receive a comprehensive assessment and have a treatment plan, which will be tailored to your specific needs. You may need medication which will support you through the detox. Throughout the detox you will have regular support and the aim is to make you feel as comfortable as possible.

Do you have Counselling in Rehab?

Whilst in rehab you will be involved in group work and one to one counselling.  Most rehabs will offer a variety of groups and provide a holistic approach. There is a great sense of community and people soon find that they feel understood, connected and realise that they are not alone in their addiction. The groups you will attend could range from 12 Step groups, health education groups, creative art groups, meditation, mindfulness, and physical exercise groups. These are just a few of the examples of groups that may be provided.

One to one counselling will provide a chance for you to explore issues that may assist you towards recovery and a life without drugs and alcohol, or your specific addiction. Counselling offers a safe and confidential space for you to talk about your thoughts and feelings and to help you to learn new and different ways to manage your issues. Counsellors may be trained in variety of styles and skills to suit your needs, such as, Person Centred, Humanistic, CBT, motivational interviewing, psychoanalytical, solution focussed.

Person Centred counselling or psychotherapy works in a humanistic way to support and guide you to make choices and decisions and works at your pace. It helps you to connect to your self-worth and inner values and is often the core style of a lot of counselling. Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is another talking therapy that can help with a wide range of physical and emotional health conditions. It aims to help you address problems by breaking them down in to, situations, emotions, thoughts, physical feelings and actions. With the therapist you will have a chance to understand your thoughts and look at how they affect your behaviours, and find ways to stopping negative cycles. CBT work will often involve some written and practical work.

Facing ourselves and looking in the mirror of our own behaviour can be a difficult and emotional journey, which may be an unfamiliar experience, but, the reward of knowing that you can trust others to listen to you in a non-judgemental way can help to guide you through. Building a rapport and a safe relationship with your counsellor is important to help you in opening up, talking about issues which you may have kept to yourself.

Imagining life beyond addiction may seem scary or exciting, or a mixture of both! Rehab will give you the tools to cope, it will help you understand yourself more and to be more aware of the choices and decisions that you make for the future. Walking through the doors of rehab could be the first step to changing your life.

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