Variations: Residential treatment varies greatly, from those programs that approach treatment as a support to those that approach it as a punishment. Residential treatment is for addicts who are ready to change the way they live their lives.
Advantages: The advantages of residential treatment, over other treatment options, are that it takes the addict away from all the daily triggers and stressors in their daily environment. In residential treatment, the addict also experiences total immersion into recovery life and behaviors.
Duration: Some programs are very short, only lasting only 28 days. Others offer months of challenging and rigorous counseling and training in the skills of recovery. While duration may say a lot for how much time the addict has away from the drug and triggers of daily life, the quality of the program is more important than the duration.
Target Clientele: Residential treatment is not for just any user of drugs or alcohol. Residential treatment is for those individuals who cannot control their use of a substance to have even a few days of sobriety. For those who cannot even maintain several days of abstinence in a row, residential treatment may actually be the only viable option.
Knowledge Base: In residential treatment, the clients will be given an expansive knowledge base of communication and interpersonal skills, conflict and anger management, scheduling in recovery, cognitive function and even recreation in recovery. The tools they gain in residential treatment are really used, however, when the addict leaves treatment and begins to use them.