Choosing a Residential Rehab Facility: What You Need To Consider

Coming to terms with the fact that you or someone you love suffers from drug addiction is hard enough, but the added worry of finding an appropriate inpatient rehabilitation facility—also known as residential treatment—may only compound feelings of desperation and anxiety. You might be plagued with many internal questions from the get-go: Where do you even start looking? How will you know if it’s the right fit? What are the right questions to ask in order to get the best sense of the facility? If you’ve gone through the process before, it might seem like an overwhelming situation, even hopeless at times.

Yet in the end, you will do your part in order to free yourself or a loved one from their addiction. And asking the right questions and knowing what to look for when researching residential rehabs will help smooth the process toward the opportunity to heal.

Successful Graduates

It’s important to find out not how often the residential drug rehab center “graduates” patients, but how often those graduates have succeeded in staying off drugs. This rate will have at least some bearing on the success you might expect. But that’s just one side of the matter. If you can get in contact with either former patients or their families to find honest opinions, do so.

Comprehensive Rehabilitation

Only you, the parent, sibling, child, friend or even the addict can truly comprehend the harrowing toll of drug addiction. Usually prior to treatment, however, addicts have a difficult time accepting that they are no longer in control and need to help themselves before it’s too late. Because drugs are all-consuming, only a rehab center that addresses both psychological and physical needs, as well as your loved one’s shrunken sense of self-worth, his or her guilt and the loss of practical skills, should be considered. It’s not enough to get them off drugs for the short-term; helping the patient understand why they turned to drugs the first place can put a stopper in ever reaching for drugs again in the future. A good comprehensive rehab center will get to the bottom of it; addressing the issues from the base.

The Staff’s Devotion

A worthwhile rehab center will go above and beyond to help not just their patients, but their patients’ families and loved ones. Extraordinary (but not unheard-of) examples include help with legal issues and intervention assistance. Even more important is the staff that interacts with the patients day-in and day-out. Look for employees with a grounded and realistic vision of addiction – because they themselves have struggled with it, or they have helped a loved one. Know that the best training comes from real life exposure, but also take the time to find out what motivates them to help people who have addictions.


Addicts at a residential rehab center may react violently as they go through withdrawal, sometimes resorting to attempted escapes. Get a sense of the security of the location, both internal and external. Find out how easily your loved one can just leave. A system in place that makes leaving difficult, while not making patients feel like caged animals, will strike the right balance and increase the chances that patients continue striving for sobriety.


The standard program time-frame is 28 days, but a residential rehab center that offers a longer stay is even better. The very best option is a center that lets your loved one recover at his or her own pace. They won’t feel rushed, which can lead to the success of completing treatment.


Don’t be ashamed if the price of the program is a big concern and maybe even deciding factor. There is no denying that drug rehab centers can be expensive. What does fall on you, however, is the weighing of both sides: cost vs. results. You can’t know exactly how your loved one’s stay at the center will turn out, but if you have been an attentive and detail-oriented researcher, it will be obvious to you that some rehab centers are simply more comprehensive and offer a better chance for success than others. Yes, they will be the more expensive ones (most likely offering the best services and facilities), but in the long run, there is no putting a price on your loved one’s recovery and their re-emergence into the world as a healthy and productive person.