Ten Things to Expect in Drug or Alcohol Treatment

Going to a rehab center for the first time for addiction treatment can be scary. You are literally putting your life into the hands of other people while undergoing treatment. You will experience many things you may have never done before. The best preparation you can have is a good attitude and a commitment to get well.

The rehab center staff includes licensed and certified medical professionals, counselors and therapists, so you are in very good hands. These professionals are experienced and knowledgeable in addiction and recovery, and will help and assist you in every way as you go through the rehabilitation process. Your attitude and reactions to the process will be entirely up to you, so it is a good thing to know what to expect in advance.

Here are ten things to consider when you go into a drug or alcohol treatment program:

  1. There will be times when you are probably going to feel very uncomfortable. During group sessions you will be expected to share your addiction experiences, plus other thoughts and feelings. If you are not used to opening up before other people, you might feel anxious about it. Many addicts are very secretive about their addiction problem and the last thing they want to do is talk about it. After awhile, you will become used to group sharing. It can be a very cathartic experience to open up and release yourself of your addiction.
  2. You can expect to go through a gamut of emotions that may range from shame, embarrassment, guilt, sorrow, grief, etc. Confronting your addiction and all the problems it may have caused you, your family and others will be difficult to do. But this is also a necessary process of recovery because you are admitting to yourself how harmful addiction is. As your mind becomes free from the effects of substance abuse, your thinking will become clear and you will see things in a new, more realistic perspective than before.
  3. There will be moments when you will want to give up and throw in the towel. Some days will be more difficult than others and you won’t feel like pushing through, but you must. You may not think you will ever make it to recovery, but you will. When you are at a low moment, you may not even care if you ever get well, and you might wish to go back to using again. Keep pushing through these feelings and you will get past this stage of recovery and come out on the other side. You will become sober and you can finally life a new life free from addiction.
  4. You may start to compare your addiction to that of other patients and begin to question your own addiction. Other patients may have had a much more severe addiction problem than you and you might begin to second-guess if you really need to be in rehab. Don’t ever compare your experience with others because that is not the issue to be concerned about. Your addiction was a problem in your life and you needed help to overcome it. Your life experience and how addiction affected you is what you should be concerned about.
  5. Every time you lie or are not honest about your addiction, the counselors and other addicts will know, and they are going to call you out on your lies. They are going to help you face your addiction and come to terms with it.
  6. You are going to meet some really great people and you may keep in touch with some of them after you have left rehab.
  7. It’s a sad fact that some addicts may relapse after leaving a rehabilitation center. Don’t make their problem become yours. You can’t save them but you can save yourself, and that is what you need to be focusing on.
  8. You are going to learn many new things about addiction, recovery, and yourself. You will be equipped with new coping strategies to handle cravings, triggers, emotions, etc. to avoid relapse. You will begin to change for the better because you will have a new understanding of addiction and what made you vulnerable in the past.
  9. There will be alternative treatments that you may find very enjoyable and wish to continue once you are out of rehab. Some treatments include massage, music therapy, art therapy, yoga, meditation and spirituality.
  10. You may begin to have a renewed interest in your faith. When you allow God into your life you reap the benefits of His healing, love and peace. He will guide you and direct your path for the rest of your life if you let Him. He has your best interests at heart and will never let you down.

It is no surprise that you will change and grow as a person during and after you leave rehab. Your life will become fruitful and you will enjoy many happy, healthy days to come. Your drug or alcohol treatment experience will prove to be very beneficial to you.

If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.

About the Author

is a proud alumni member of WhiteSands Treatment. After living a life of chaos, destruction and constant let downs, Mark was able to make a complete turnaround that sparked a new way of life. He is serious about his recovery along with helping others. At WhiteSands Treatment, we offer support to you in your homes or when you are out living in your daily lives.