5 Things A Parent Should Look For In A Drug Treatment Program

workplace drug testingIt can often be quite hard for a parent to notice or admit that their child has a substance abuse problem, but this is a very important first step to take in helping your child successfully beat their substance abuse.  The next step is to get them into a successful drug rehabilitation treatment program.

Choosing a Drug Treatment Program

While it may seem rather simple to choose to enroll your child in a substance abuse program at a local treatment facility, it is vital to choose the right facility for your child as not all facilities are created equal, and not all facilities have the same success rates with individual patients. Some facilities may use substitute drugs to try and handle addiction, but for some individuals this perpetuates drug addiction rather than resolving it.  Some facilities may focus on counseling that focuses attention on past drug abuse, but doesn’t give the patient sufficient tools to move on into a drug-free future.  Some facilities have an outpatient program that may not effectively remove the individual from the environment that is causing them to turn to drug use, while others are residential rehabilitation facilities.

So what should a parent look for in a drug treatment program?  Following are five key factors in a successful drug treatment program:

1. State licensing and accreditation

It’s important to make sure that the program facility is following state guidelines regarding licensing and accreditation.  Many facilities may look fantastic on paper or the internet, but if they are not properly licensed and accredited by the state, they may not be providing professional treatment services by trained professionals. Enrolling your child in such a facility is not only a waste of money but is potentially dangerous for your child.

2. Facility success statistics

Irregardless of what a treatment facility promises, they always have an actual statistic verifying their success rate.  For obvious reasons, it is preferable to obtain statistics or reviews from an independent study rather than the facility itself.

3. Effective address of emotional, mental or physical problems that caused the drug abuse

If your child has turned to drugs because of a difficult emotional circumstance in their life, simply having them withdraw from drugs for a period of time will not effectively eliminate the underlying problem so that they don’t relapse into drug use again in the future.  An effective rehabilitation treatment program includes addressing and helping your child resolve the underlying reasons for their drug use.

4. Addressing your child’s specific needs

Residential treatment facilities may be gorgeous and come with wonderful amenities, but residential rehabilitation treatment may not be necessary for your child if their substance abuse is limited to binge drinking on the weekends.  Conversely, outpatient treatment may not be the best choice for your child if they are addicted to cocaine, heroin or ecstasy.  Also, if your child’s substance abuse has been long-term (many months or years), they may need longer treatment than if it is only a recent development (a month or less).

5. Successful after-care program

To really guarantee success, it is important that your child receive after-treatment care that helps them lay out their future plans and goals for a sober life.  After-care should include follow-up visits or consultations with a treatment specialist who can help address and resolve any questions, concerns or difficulties your child may encounter following program graduation.

A Look into a Successful Drug Treatment Program

Two Oklahoma parents recently shared their personal success with Narconon Arrowhead’s drug rehabilitation treatment program.  At 32 years old their son had been addicted to drugs for ten years, despite numerous efforts to stop his drug use.  He did manage to stay sober for six months following a thirty-day treatment program, but he eventually returned to drugs, becoming addicted to methamphetamine and losing his job and home. His mom Linda said, “The heart breaking truth was that the kind, Christian, fun-loving son that we had raised was no longer the same person on meth. I cannot tell you how many nights I cried and prayed, all the while trying to keep it our ‘family secret’, because I no longer wanted to go to the gym, or spend time with our friends.  I just went to work and went home.  I told my husband that in my mind I was preparing myself for our son’s funeral.”

Despite Linda feeling that her son’s addiction was leading him to a certain early grave, and despite wanting to keep it a secret, she knew that she had to do something to try and help him.  Her son was now a drug dealer himself, selling meth on the streets to others.  Linda and her husband met with the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and their county District Attorney in the hopes that they would have him arrested, but were disappointed when they were given no advice about what to do.

Linda came across Narconon Arrowhead when searching on the internet for successful drug rehabilitation facilities.  She spoke with a counselor who worked with her and her husband for five weeks to help them enroll their son in the treatment program at Narconon.  To their relief, he agreed to go.

Linda’s son went through the same difficulties that most addicts face with any treatment program.  For the first few weeks, he made it clear that he was only participating in the program for her and that he did not actually want to be there.  Linda insisted that he “make it work” and left him to it, and within a few months was rewarded for her efforts when she felt that she was getting her “old son” back.  He eventually decided that it was important he continue the program for himself, and began to pray for his own and his roommate’s recovery.  He eventually successfully completed the program and stayed at Narconon Arrowhead to undergo comprehensive training so that he can work with others to help them overcome their addiction. “I hear quite often, ‘Thanks Mom, for saving my life.’ I guarantee you that is from his heart,” Linda said.

Narconon Arrowhead has helped over 10,000 people overcome substance abuse since its inception 22 years ago.  The program is a holistic residential rehabilitation program that successfully helps individuals with substance abuse problems ranging from alcoholism to addiction to heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine and more.  Independent research indicates that Narconon graduates have a 70% success rate of going on to live drug-free lives.

Linda’s story is proof that parents can help their children in overcoming debilitating substance abuse with the right treatment program and facility.