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  • Watching a child struggle with drug or alcohol addiction is one of the most difficult experiences a parent can go through. Although there is no cure for addiction, there is hope with treatment.

    While rehab centers cannot guarantee that a treatment program will be effective for any specific person who participates, these services are evidence-based and carefully designed to give participants the motivation, tools, and support to begin a successful and long-lasting recovery.

    Will Drug Rehab Cure Your Son Or Daughter?

    Addiction is, by its very nature, a chronic relapsing disease with no simple cure or fix. 

    In fact, around 40-60% of those who receive professional addiction treatment do relapse and return to substance abuse at some point during their recoveries. However, relapse is not a sign or failure or that treatment didn’t work.  

    Through addiction treatment services you and your child will develop coping skills and other tools to maintain recovery and live a healthier, more productive life. 

    In the end, you and your loved one will likely understand that a relapse isn’t the end of the addiction recovery journey, but rather a bump in the road. 

    What Is Substance Abuse Treatment?

    Substance abuse treatment programs, commonly known as rehab or detox, are licensed and organized services operated by healthcare providers to treat substance use disorders (alcoholism or drug addiction).

    These programs come in a variety of intensities and treatment formats, and they use a range of treatment options depending on their specialties or the individual needs of patients.

    Inpatient Vs. Outpatient Treatment

    One major division between different types of addiction treatment services is the distinction between inpatient (residential) treatment services and outpatient treatment services.

    Inpatient programs are hosted at specialized residential treatment centers where participants live for an extended period of time (usually 30 or 60 days) while receiving care. Inpatient programs are recommended for moderate to severe forms of substance used disorder.

    Outpatient programs also provide high quality and accessible care, with participants commuting to their scheduled treatment sessions and then back home afterwards. 

    Co-Occurring Mental Health Care

    Substance use disorders frequently co-occur alongside other mental health issues. 

    As a result, people may turn to drugs or alcohol to cope with their mental illness, or the effects of these addictive substances may trigger the development or worsening of new mental health disorders like anxiety and depression.

    Because of this, many addiction treatment facilities offer dual diagnosis treatment programs that are specifically developed to treat both substance abuse problems and other mental health problems at the same time.

    This individualized approach can greatly improve treatment outcomes and benefit a person’s overall mental, emotional, and behavioral health in the long-term.

    Can You Force Your Child Into Rehab?

    It depends.

    Your adult child, 18 years old or older, can usually not be placed into rehab against their will except in very special circumstances, likely involving court decisions or mental health crises.

    An addicted son or daughter under the age of 18 can be put into residential drug rehab by a legal guardian, even without their consent. This may be the best way to handle a child’s addiction when they are defiant and refuse to cooperate in treatment willingly.

    Other Ways To Help Your Child

    Alcohol and drug use are common and treatable problems. While professional help is an important part of the recovery process, as a parent you can have a positive and lasting impact on your child’s behavior and well-being in the midst of a substance use disorder:

    • educate yourself on the signs and effects of addiction, how it is treated, and how to avoid stigma
    • avoid enabling your child’s behavior financially or in other material or behavioral ways
    • set boundaries and establish realistic expectations for your child and their behavior, and stick with them
    • allow your child to experience negative life consequences as a result of their poor choices
    • be steadfastly encouraging, respectful, and loving, and avoid using shame, insults, or manipulation to force your child into the treatment process
    • keep a supply of naloxone (Narcan) on-hand in the event of an opioid overdose
    • consider attending family therapy sessions
    • practice healthy self-care for yourself and show attention to your other family members
    • consider joining al-anon or some other support group for parents or family members of those struggling with addiction

    At Ark Behavioral Health, we’re available to help you and your family face the reality of addiction through expert inpatient and outpatient treatment services. Contact us today to learn more about your treatment options.

    Written by Ark Behavioral Health Editorial Team
    ©2024 Ark National Holdings, LLC. | All Rights Reserved.
    This page does not provide medical advice.
    Article Sources

    National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) - Treatment Recovery
    Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) - SAMHSA Families Family Support Guide
    Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) - What Is Substance Abuse Treatment?

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