Though most people look for addiction treatment options close to home, traveling for rehab has become an increasingly common practice in recent decades. This is thanks in large part to cheaper airfares and also because of a growing recognition of the benefits of travel itself.
Below are some of the reasons to consider getting treated at a rehab facility away from home. Get in touch with the team at Dallas Drug Treatment centers if you’re interested in finding rehabilitation centers in Dallas and other parts of North Texas.
Traveling for rehab and treatment has been associated with several advantages for people with substance use disorder (SUD). Some of the benefits include the following:
As with many other mental health conditions, SUD can be more challenging to treat if the patient continues to experience the same emotional triggers and dysfunctional environments day in and day out. While the support of friends and family can be critical for SUD treatment, they may also be a negative presence early in recovery. After all, one’s normal everyday situation is what led to the problem in the first place.
By traveling for rehab, recovering individuals can get a fresh start in an entirely different environment. This can help them break with negative habits far more effectively than if they stayed in the same place where their condition deteriorated. Making this kind of move can drastically reduce the number of substance use triggers being experienced, ultimately helping the patient experience new perspectives and be more optimistic about their recovery.
While familial support is critical, the presence of family members can be a distraction. Having family members communicate with the patient before they are emotionally stable can also worsen relationships and hamper long-term recovery. This is why most residential rehab programs will seriously restrict communication and contact for the first few weeks.
However, it’s not just the patient that benefits from this time apart. Their family members probably need a break too, even if they may not feel it.
Seeing a family member suffer because of drugs or alcohol can be especially traumatic and emotionally taxing. This is especially true if the patient was abusive or underwent drastic personality changes.
Chances are that family members also need to see a therapist to address the traumas and other mental health issues that they experienced. If nothing else, just having that time apart can allow them to be more emotionally ready for family therapy and workshop sessions later in the patient’s recovery.
Getting treated elsewhere provides additional barriers to drug-seeking behavior, which can be critical in early recovery. It’s much more difficult for patients to simply leave the program or find drugs when they’re in an unfamiliar place. This is especially true if they enter a rehab program in a relatively remote location. This can buy the patient more time to heal, which can be difficult if they can easily access their drug of choice.
There are a few circumstances where traveling for drug rehab is the more affordable option. Of course, this is relative to the cost of treatment in one’s hometown as well as the specific demands of a particular SUD case. Medical tourism businesses in places like Florida, Israel, and Thailand have made a point of offering relatively high-quality healthcare at rates much lower than normally found in most of America.
Another circumstance where traveling could be the cheaper option is if the patient enrolls in a lower-cost outpatient program elsewhere, rather than in a comparatively more expensive residential program close to home.
Residential programs can be more expensive in general because of room and board as well as the 24/7 staffing. However, they can effectively isolate patients from drugs and alcohol, as these programs are usually in secured facilities. Outpatient programs can be much more affordable but they offer no real way of keeping determined individuals away from their substance of choice.
By enrolling in an outpatient program located in away from a patient’s usual triggers, huge cost savings can be made. As another bonus, unlike in a typical residential setup, outpatient programs usually allow the recovering individual to continue work or school, either through a remote arrangement or by taking opportunities at their temporary hometown.
Most of us know that travel can be good for our mental health. However, recent research suggests that the benefits go beyond simply helping us decompress and feel good. The new experiences associated with travel have been associated with the accelerated growth of new brain cells.
This suggests that travel can help patients form new connections in their brains that bypass the defective ones created by drug use. It may also help do the same for trauma and other mental health disorders that often contribute to drug use.
Traveling for drug rehab isn’t for everybody. People with severe SUD or travel anxiety might be better treated at facilities close to home. But for those with the means and the right circumstances, it can be a good strategy for maximizing the odds of recovery.
Getting SUD treatment far from home can give the patient the distance necessary to concentrate on their recovery, prevents early relapses, allows their family members to take a needed break, and helps supercharge their healing. In some circumstances, it might even be cheaper to seek treatment elsewhere. Given these benefits, traveling for rehab is something everyone with an SUD should consider. Good luck, and be well!