When Rehab Doesn’t Work

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Did you know that an average of 40 to 60 percent of people who were once addicted to drugs or alcohol relapse into addiction? Just like hypertension and diabetes, addiction is a chronic disease that requires ongoing care. Without medicine, regular exercise and diet modification, a person with once-high blood pressure will become symptomatic once again. Similarly, a recovering addict needs ongoing support to stay sober. Without this treatment, relapse is likely.

Why Rehab Doesn’t Always Work

The quality of the care, the accessibility to aftercare and the family support structure all influence treatment outcomes. An individual who enrolls in rapid detox to beat withdrawal — but who doesn’t participate in talk therapy or counseling and who doesn’t have adequate family support in place — is likely to return to abuse. Similarly, a person who beats withdrawal and gets counseling might relapse if he or she doesn’t address any underlying disorder such as depression. A high quality program that provides comprehensive addiction care can treat all of these issues.

Living sober while in treatment is difficult enough, but for many individuals, returning to “real” life presents distinct challenges. Constantly driving past a once-favored bar, or spending time with people who still use drugs, can lead to uncontrollable urges. Recovering addicts who have a strong support structure in place are more likely to enjoy sobriety and avoid relapse. This support is essential when cravings occur, especially once the safety and structure of rehab is in the past.

How to Make Rehab Work for You

Many people have successful recoveries following detoxification, counseling and taking on a new approach to living. Although they may have a relapse or two, the overall treatment process works and they continue to live clean, sober lives with new purpose.

But for some, the attempt at recovery is more difficult. What do you do when rehab doesn’t work, and how can you make rehab work for you next time? If you are one of those people who hasn’t yet had success, it’s important that you try to figure out why rehabilitation didn’t work, and it’s even more critical that you try again. Living the rest of your life free of addiction, with achievable goals and healthy relationships, is worth the effort.

10 Reasons Rehab May Not Have Worked

If you are still suffering from alcohol or drug addiction after trying rehab, here are ten possible reasons why. But remember, even if your recovery failed for a legitimate reason, this is not an excuse for you to justify your continued dependence and substance abuse. You need to move forward with getting clean because you are ready and you deserve it!

move forward with getting clean because you are ready and you deserve it

  1. You didn’t enter a rehabilitation program for yourself.

You signed up for a recovery program because the court ordered you to do it or because your partner told you they would leave you if you didn’t try it. Your parents forced you to go to rehab or you half-heartedly gave it a try. Your whole heart wasn’t in the process, and you weren’t motivated to stop using or drinking.

The motivation to stop the addiction has to come from you! You have to want to get clean for yourself. That has to be your number one reason. Doing it for other people is not a strong enough reason. If your rationale for attempting recovery is to try to save a relationship and the relationship doesn’t work out, you will lose your reason for staying sober and clean. Oftentimes, legal problems don’t stop addicts from using. Court-mandated treatment probably won’t be enough to make you follow through with the new structure in your life, unless it’s what you want to do.

When you are tired of living your life as a slave to drugs or alcohol because it’s making you unhappy, then you should enter a treatment center for yourself. Your odds of succeeding this time will go up exponentially!

  1. The stigma was too much to bear.

The fact that you are undergoing rehabilitation can create a stigma for you. Other people may treat you differently, as though you’re delicate or sick. They might judge you as being unworthy of respect or trust. If these people came to visit you while you were undergoing recovery before, it might have been too demoralizing for you to continue.

Ultimately, this goes back to the first reason rehab didn’t work — your heart wasn’t in it. Of course, it can be hurtful when you don’t get the moral support you need. But when you’re really ready to change your life, you have to be able to ignore those who don’t support you and keep going for yourself. Your recovery should be focused on you.

your recovery should be focused on you

  1. It’s hard to change.

It’s much easier to continue living the life you’ve always known than to start over with a new routine and a new set of disciplines. There is comfort in staying with the addiction lifestyle. You can block out problems and stress with substances. But in the long run, it really isn’t easy to live this way. You damage your life and your future every time you turn to substances. Why not choose to live better?

A good treatment center will help you feel good about life again. Part of the problem is your brain and body change because of addiction. The physical changes that have developed as a result of long-term alcohol and substance abuse can take months to be reversed. In addition to your own motivation, you’re going to need some help from a caring medical team to show you that a changed life is a better life.

  1. You don’t have a strong support system.

If you don’t have an understanding and supportive family or positive friends, it can be very challenging to kick your habits. If you live with people who have their own addictions or who are enablers who offer little support, it will be more difficult for you to be successful. In fact, negative influences can actually encourage you to continue with your addictive lifestyle.

negative influences can actually encourage you to continue with your addictive lifestyle

This is why it is so important that your family comes to counseling so they can learn ways to be more supportive.  Good recovery centers recognize the value of family. The staff you work with don’t want you to fail. They will do everything they can to show your family how to help you. An experienced team will emphasize that alcoholism and drug addiction are diseases. Understanding that the addicted individual has a disease and that the family can help makes it easier to treat. Your family can see it isn’t simply a matter of choice or failed willpower.

The role of family is critical to your success. Rarely is the addict an island. Your family members may have been hurt by your addiction and need to be healed as part of your recovery. Without tremendous support, you will have a hard time making it on your own. 12 Keys Rehab will put together the pieces of broken relationships to figure out who will be able to help you, and invite them into the recovery process.

When you join a knowledgeable and compassionate rehabilitation facility, you’ll meet lots of other fighters like yourself. You’ll have the opportunity to make some new friends who know exactly what you’re going through, and you can lean on each other as you go through the process. You can find the courage to end the friendships that no longer serve you and build new ones that will help you soar!

end the friendships that no longer serve you and build new ones that will help you soar

  1. You’ve been to rehab many times.

Often, addicts and alcoholics have learned how to “work” other people in order to get what they want. If they’ve been to recovery centers multiple times, they might be well aware of what to say to the counselors and the staff in order to complete their time in recovery and get out. They can also become immune to the benefits that come from being around other clients. This reason for disappointment also points back to the number one problem — that you’re not in it for the right reason. People who go to recovery clinics because of court mandates in particular tend to experience this obstacle.

  1. It’s been a long time since you’ve tried a recovery center.

The way addiction and alcoholism are viewed by the medical community has changed over the years. Dependence used to be seen as a strictly behavioral issue. If you wanted to get clean, it was up to you to have the willpower, pure and simple. Now experienced doctors understand that addiction is a disease and, like any disease, needs medical treatment. Yes, there still needs to be the desire on your part to stay clean, but the medical community can help you much more effectively than in years past. There are medications that can help with the detoxification process. It doesn’t need to be painful or uncomfortable as you may have experienced before.

if you want to get clean, it is up to you to have the willpower

At 12 Keys Rehab, we also know your needs might not be the same as any other person’s. One client might need more individual counseling therapy while another needs more medical care. Your family might be an unusually big contributor to your drug use, or you might have depression issues stemming from childhood that have fueled your alcoholism. It’s important that your therapy team takes the time to assess all of the components that have created your dependency. Only then can a clear treatment plan take shape and the forward effort can begin. A whole-picture approach to your recovery can greatly increase your odds of success.

  1. You expected treatment and recovery to be a quick fix.

Rarely can you come out of 30 days of rehabilitation and expect to be on the road to success. Because of the incredible brain-altering and body-altering effects of addiction, it can take months to heal the physical dependency. Some studies have shown that the brain can recover, at least partially, after 14 months without drugs. Your recovery must allow time for physical healing to be completed and give you time to fully adopt new habits, routines and healthy social circles.

  1. You were at the wrong treatment facility with the wrong staff.

You need to find a facility that treats the whole person and looks at the individual. A holistic recovery center evaluates key stressors in your life. It is up to date on the latest treatments. It has licensed, skilled and experienced employees. The best facilities consider the health of your spirit, your body, your mind and your family.

A recovery center that lacks any or all of these qualities can actually cause more problems than it solves. A successful program will approach your needs with the goal of treating underlying mental, physical and past traumas along with your addiction. And the right facility knows detox needs to be as comfortable as possible.

Even if you were in an excellent drug and alcohol treatment center, you might still need to give recovery another try. Relapse is possible, especially for those who have been battling an addiction for a long time and for those who have inadequate support in their lives. Keep in mind that whenever you sign up for rehabilitation, the results will have a cumulative effect on you. You learn more each time about yourself and the possibilities life holds for you. Additionally, every time you go through detoxification, you have a chance to see how it feels to be sober and clean again. That in itself is a gift. Don’t think of time spent in recovery as a waste of time or a total failure. Time spent on your health is always worthwhile.

time spent on your health is always worthwhile

  1. You weren’t able to spend enough time in a rehabilitation facility.

Your insurance might only cover 30 days of residential care, but that is often not enough. Three times that amount is usually more successful. 90 days allows you to get sufficient counseling, learn new lifestyle habits and create a new routine. Longer treatment provides the time your recovery team needs to get to know your addiction and provide the best individualized treatment plan for your needs.

  1. You didn’t have enough aftercare and follow-up.

In the past, once you completed your time in a recovery center, you might have gone back to your life and did your best to cope on your own. This is not an effective way to handle recovery. Recovery takes a long time, years even. After you finish the initial detoxification and addiction treatment, you will benefit from additional counseling and follow-up with the treatment center. The sense of community you feel in the facility and with the people who shared your recovery journey are important to your continued success. It’s important to have people to lean on and people who can remind you to stay on the path toward a better life. Having a strong aftercare plan is essential to long-term, successful recovery.

it's important to have people to lean on and people who can remind you to stay on the path toward a better life

Understand that relapse is unfortunately a common process in recovery. It can take four to five years to really become stable. This is true of any disease including alcoholism and drug addiction. You shouldn’t be too hard on yourself or judgmental of your attempted recovery. Chalk it up to relapse when something goes wrong and get back into a treatment facility to get the help you need.

12 Keys Rehab Can Help You

12 Keys Rehab is one of the most experienced and caring facilities in drug and alcohol addiction recovery. You will be treated by a team that really cares about you. They treat you like family. Many of our team members have actually gone through successful recovery themselves. This means they can truly relate to your journey. They can support you because they have walked the walk.

We know there are often underlying problems that have led to your drug or alcohol addiction. Perhaps overindulgence and addiction are a long-standing part of your family’s own culture. Possibly you suffered from an abusive or traumatic event in your childhood that has never healed. You might have depression or other mental health disorders that make it harder for you to choose the right habits. Or maybe you have a health problem that has been ignored. Whatever the underlying or coexisting problem is, we want to get to the bottom of it so you can get back on the path to your total health.

What Makes 12 Keys Rehab Different?

We focus on the mind, spirit and body. Because we keep a low client-to-staff ratio, we are able to consider the whole person in designing a therapy regimen that will work best for you. This means you will always have someone to talk to when you need someone to listen. We are always performing assessments of your progress to see what is working for your recovery and what isn’t. Then we adjust as necessary.

you will always have someone to talk to

We rely on the latest medical science to make sure you detox as safely and as comfortably as possible. We also use the latest and most respected scientific therapy techniques such as biofeedback, Motivational Interviewing and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) as therapy for traumatic memories you may have.

We also focus on your body. Not only does this include healthy and safe detoxification, but also making your body healthier overall. We encourage physical activity, especially aquatic activities since we’re located on the Florida waterfront. You can try out a new hobby like kayaking, fishing or standup paddling. If water isn’t your thing, you can try horseback riding or take long walks through our property. Imagine what it will be like to leave 12 Keys Rehab feeling healthier, with a new hobby for your new lifestyle!

We also want you to eat healthy. Our chefs prepare nutritious meals to get you off on the right foot every day. As a recovering addict, you might be accustomed to poor eating habits. Good food will give you more energy to face your recovery with strength and teach you some new habits.

We focus on the spirit. This means we want you to wake up to who you truly are to be the happiest you can be. A 12-step program has been shown over and over again to be one of the greatest keys to success in recovery.

How 12-Step Programs Can Help You

During recovery and following your treatment, you can benefit greatly from a 12-step program. The 12-step program has specific steps that will help you go through the recovery process and make amends with your family and with your transgressions. One of the perks of these programs is that you will meet and spend time with people who are going through the same things. 12-step programs are available in our treatment facility, but they can also be found worldwide. Wherever you go on this planet, you will be able to find support and friendship in a 12-step program. Some programs offer recovery classes and group support for the family, too.

you will meet and spend time with people who are going through the same things

12 Keys Rehab Is Waiting for You Right Now

It doesn’t matter if you have tried a lot of recovery programs in the past and they didn’t work for you. Each one has had more benefits to you than you may have realized, even if they weren’t successful. You can’t use the past to limit your future. We have successfully treated many clients who have undergone multiple unsuccessful rehabilitations before.

You deserve to have a life that is free from addiction and leaves you feeling like the world is full of possibilities and opportunities for happiness. Giving rehabilitation another try is the best decision you can make, so contact 12 Keys Rehab today. We are here for you 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Don’t let yesterday hold you back. Join us and start working on your new beginnings.

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The Addiction Blog