There are many types of addiction treatment programs for teens who are struggling with a substance abuse problem, such as drug or alcohol abuse. Here are a few of the most common addiction rehab programs available for teenagers:
- Teen Residential Treatment Programs. Residential means that the teen will live at the facility while undergoing treatment, in a residential or home-like setting. Look for a treatment center that offers an academic program so your child can continue their education while in substance abuse treatment.
- Teen Inpatient Hospitalization Programs. Some drug or alcohol addictions may require medically supervised detox followed by inpatient hospitalization for treatment. Depending on the severity of the substance abuse, a hospitalization or partial hospitalization program may be recommended for your teen.
- Teen Outpatient or Day Treatment Programs. Different than inpatient treatment, outpatient allows the teen to attend a day program and return home each night to spend time with their family and sleep in their own bed.
Other Therapeutic Treatment Programs for Teens
In addition to the more traditional treatment programs outlined above, there are other more “alternative” treatment programs developed for troubled youth. These include:
- Youth Wilderness Therapy Programs. Most teen rehab treatment programs include some form of schooling because of the age of the individual in treatment. However, unlike the treatment programs below, most Wilderness Programs do not include academics. The focus of a Wilderness Program can be on helping the child gain self-esteem and coping skills through outdoor therapies. Once the teen graduates the program, they return to their public school or an alternative private or boarding school to continue their high school education.
- Teen Therapeutic Boarding Schools. These schools are generally fully accredited and focus on teen emotional health and growth programs. Although there may not be any formally educated rehab physicians or clinicians on staff, most of these schools do have trained educators who use holistic education plans to help the students own up to their actions and develop personal growth skills.
- Residential Addiction Treatment Schools. Most residential teen drug and alcohol rehab centers will offer an academic program so the children can continue their formal education while undergoing addiction treatment. Licensed facilities will also have a full professional staff that includes counselors, therapists, psychiatrists and psychologists. The highly-supervised, highly-structured environments are designed to help kids learn coping and independent living skills, while focusing on helping them build social skills and self-esteem.
What to look for in a teen rehab program:
Because there are so many options available in teen drug and alcohol treatment programs, here is a list of important factors to look for and consider in the facility you choose:
- State Licensing
- Health Accreditations
- Academic Programs
- A Qualified Clinical Director
- Trained and Experienced Staff
- Family Support
- Individualized Programs
- How Success is Measured
- Parent Communications
- Disciplinary Actions
- Costs and If Insurance Is Accepted
- Relapse Prevention
- Follow Up Care
Before you enroll your teen in ANY substance abuse treatment program, you should:
- Look up the business online, look for real reviews and testimonials.
- Ask questions (use the list above), call and talk to the clinical director if possible.
- Visit the facility and get a private tour.
- Request proof of licensing, accreditations and staff credentials.
- Get all policies and procedures in writing.
How do I know what treatment program is right for my teen?
Although no one knows your child better than you, if you are concerned your teen is suffering from a drug or alcohol addiction – you should seek out professional help. Professionals who can help you diagnose your teen and get them into the right program include:
- Medical Doctors (start with your child’s pediatrician or family physician)
- General Practitioners
- Physicians Assistants
- Nurse Practitioners
These professionals have been trained to evaluate your child and can hold tests if they believe that your teen has a substance abuse problem.
Whatever treatment program you decide is right for your teen should include a clear path for your teen to boost their self-esteem and self-confidence. The program should also include a way for your child to continue their education while in treatment. Lastly, make sure the program includes the family and provides on-going support for the loved ones of the teen in treatment.