How Do I Prepare for Drug or Alcohol Rehab?

Written by Chloe Nicosia

Going to Rehab: How to Prepare for Drug Rehab and Alcoholism Treatment Programs

Whether through the intervention of loved ones or through your own realization that your drug or alcohol problem has become uncontrollable, making the decision to go to rehab is a major step, and you should feel proud! The path you’ve taken might not be easy, but with the support of family and friends, your peers in rehab, and the caring staff in the treatment program, you can make it through the experience one day at a time. Of course, there are a few things that one should do before entering a rehab program. As such, we will explore how to prepare for drug rehab and alcoholism treatment programs in this article to assist you with your journey. 

Find more resources on beginning your recovery here.

Important Tips on How to Prepare for Drug Rehab

As an addict, you have surely experienced the anxiety and discomfort that comes with not being able to get your fix. When getting ready to go to rehab, it’s common to be filled with fear and anxiety; your brain has developed learned-behavior that makes you believe that you have to have more alcohol or drugs just to make it through each day. One of the characteristics of addiction is the desire to want to stop, but being unable to. However, the professional treatment programs and support that one receives at rehab are proven methods of treating the disease; with a rehab’s help, you can finally have the tools needed to beat the disease.

How to prepare for drug rehab is about making sure everything is in order for you to go into an inpatient program and get the help you need. All that’s ultimately expected of you is to be there; the rest of your journey will be assisted.

The following looks at tips on how to prepare for residential inpatient treatment, which usually last for 30 to 90 days.

Ensure that Family and Work, or School Obligations, are Taken Care Of

Addicts tend to hide their substance abuse from those around them. Friends, co-workers, peers, and even family members may not be aware that there was a problem. Since rehab will take you out of your normal life and routine for weeks, how to prepare for drug rehab should include telling those that need to know that you have decided to get professional help that you will be away for a time.

The Family and Medical Leave Act ensures that every permanent employee has the right to 12 weeks of medical leave – which addiction rehab falls under. Your job isn’t the only thing that needs to be addressed before going to rehab; one of the important drug rehabilitation tips is to ensure that pets and anyone that you may be taking care of has someone to take care of them while you strive to improve your life. If there are bills to take care of, ensure that someone is able to help you with them in your absence, even if it is just ensuring that a debit order goes through on time.

Prepare Your Essentials

Preparing for a stay at an inpatient facility where you don’t really know anyone or what might happen during your stay can prompt you to want to bring everything that helps you to feel more at ease. However, how to prepare for residential inpatient treatment is best done by only bringing the things that are essential for your stay, such as:

  • A contact list
  • An alarm clock
  • Insurance card
  • Important jewelry such as a wedding ring
  • A journal
  • Pictures or friends and family
  • Required prescription medication in its original bottle

This list is just a basic guideline, and your rehab should be contacted so that you know what they allow and encourage you to bring.

Don’t Binge on Drugs or Alcohol

To an addict at the time, going to rehab may seem like a prison sentence where they are losing the only real thing that they care about. This can prompt a person to want to binge on drugs or alcohol, feeling like it might be the last time they can do it.

One of the important drug rehabilitation tips before entering into a program is to not binge because over time, you have developed a tolerance which already requires that you take excessive amounts of a substance, and bingeing can have fatal consequences: overdose. Even if it doesn’t reach the point of overdose, it will just make the withdrawal process that much harder.

It’s Okay, For Now, to Continue to Stay with Your Regular Dosing

One of the first things that every person who is dependent on drugs or alcohol must go through is withdrawal. The intense and uncomfortable symptoms are often too much to handle, and they can even be life-threatening.

In a residential rehab program, one of the benefits are that you can be given prescription and OTC medication that can greatly aid you through the symptoms of withdrawal. There is also around-the-clock care at most rehabs to ensure that it is done safely. Therefore, one of the ways on how to prepare for drug rehab is to not do anything different – at least for now.

Take Time to Relax and Gather Your Thoughts

As previously mentioned, your mind may be filled with anxiety and fear. When these emotions become too much, take time for yourself and enjoy a relaxing bath, watch your favorite series, or just take a walk around the block – anything that will calm your mind.

Start Keeping a Journal

One of the ways on how to prepare for drug rehab is to start keeping a journal, or even just write a letter to yourself. Keeping a journal of your recovery is often encouraged by counselors and

therapists as a way to better express your emotions and create an outlet for overwhelming feelings. Such a journal should record your emotions and at the time; it can be about how you feel about the situations, such as your fears and hopes.

Starting Your Recovery Journey

If you have yet to make the decision to get help for your addiction, then today can be the day that you begin your journey to a fulfilling, happy life. Better Addiction Care is a rehab resource that you can use to learn more about the disease of addiction and why rehab is important. Allow us to help you find a rehab center in your location to begin your journey today. Call us at (800) 429-7690 for help.

Sources:

https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugs-brains-behavior-science-addiction/treatment-recovery https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/media-guide/science-drug-use-addiction-basics