Ways to Help Your Parent with Addiction: Inpatient Treatment Centers

As the adult child of a parent with an addiction to drugs or alcohol, you may find yourself wondering if addiction inpatient treatment centers are the solution to their and your problems.

It can be tough to watch your parent struggle with addiction and while you want to live your own life and be the independent adult that you are, you do not want to sit by and watch your parent suffer needlessly. Before you take any steps or approach your parent about addiction treatment options, you will want to make sure that you get a better understanding of addiction and the best ways to help a person overcome it. That way, you can be sure your parent gets the best possible care and treatment available to them and has the best chance at successful recovery and sobriety.

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Addiction Statistics in the United States

Based on surveys performed by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), 23.5 million people across the country were in need of treatment for drug or alcohol abuse and addiction problems in the year 2009. However, only a fraction of these people (2.6 million to be exact) received any kind of specialized substance abuse or addiction treatment.

Why So Many Go Without Treatment

The question is, why is it that 23.5 million people suffered from substance abuse and addiction problems and only just over 11 percent of them got treatment? One of the many reasons for this lack of proper treatment comes from a general misunderstanding of addiction and the treatment process. Addiction is often thought of as a weakness of will or a lack of self-control.

However, the reality is that addiction is a disease and diseases are medical conditions that require treatment to overcome, unlike a self-control problem or a character weakness. Addiction affects a person both mentally and physically. Medical treatment as well as mental health care are needed to overcome and manage an addiction to address these physical and mental aspects of the condition but because so few people understand these facts about addiction, they do not seek out treatment and instead repeatedly try and fail to stop substance abuse on their own.

Types of Addiction Treatment Programs

Just like no two people suffering from a drug or alcohol addiction are exactly alike, no two addiction treatment programs are identical either. However, there are general categories of treatment that you will want to consider so you can narrow down the options for your parent. Outpatient treatment programs are the least time-consuming and often the most economical option in addiction treatment.

Your parent would spend a few hours a week during evenings or on the weekends in therapy sessions or in addiction recovery courses and would be able to continue on with their regular daily life otherwise. Outpatient treatment is popular because of the limited time and financial commitment required, but can be difficult to complete successfully because of the many possible distractions and temptations that can occur.

Alternatively, there is the option of a partial hospitalization program (PHP). These programs occur in a hospital or clinical setting and are a step up in control and structure compared to outpatient treatment. These programs require a commitment of 6 to 8 hours a day, five days a week. Your parent would go to the treatment center in the morning, stay for the duration of the day and go through a series of therapy sessions during that time. Then, at the end of the day, they would return home.

And finally, there is a fully structured and supervised option through addiction inpatient treatment centers. Inpatient (residential) treatment is a full-time commitment including overnight stays for several weeks or months. This intensive treatment program eliminates the issues of distraction and temptation, but does require a person to separate themselves entirely from their regular life for that time period.

Additional Factors to Consider in Choosing Treatment Programs

The general arrangement or style of a treatment program is not the only factor to consider when helping your parent find the right treatment program for them. Your parent is a unique individual with different beliefs, needs, and tastes.

For example, if your parent has had a lifelong struggle with mental health disorders like borderline personality disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, depression, or anxiety, they may benefit from addiction inpatient treatment centers that include dual diagnosis treatment (treatment for both addiction and mental health disorders). If your parent is a person that is not religious, it would be best to avoid faith-based treatment programs like 12-step addiction treatment programs.

Talking to Your Parent about Addiction Treatment

Finally, it is important to approach the situation with your parent with caution and care. Your parent may not be receptive to the idea of confronting their addiction and may even be of the mind that they do not have an addiction. It would be best not to go it alone when you approach them about addiction treatment.

If you have siblings or know other people that are concerned about your parent, you can arrange a formal intervention. It may also be helpful to approach a professional in addiction interventions to guide the conversation and help you to help your parent through this difficult but necessary process.

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