This website is dedicated to helping people strengthen their recovery through travel. However, we appreciate that some of our readers will still be using drugs or drinking alcohol. If this is the case, we recommend you receive a detox and rehab programme before you begin about travelling.
If you aren’t in recovery, you simply can’t travel in order to strengthen your recovery!
On this page, we aim to offer information for people who are not yet in recovery. To begin your recovery journey, you will need to consider going into a rehab programme. Many rehabs offer inpatient treatment. Here, you will undergo a clinical detox. A detox is followed by a therapeutic rehabilitation process and aftercare programme.
Addiction rehab is about getting into recovery. You may assume that getting into rehab is the hardest part. This isn’t true. The hardest part is sustaining a lifetime of recovery.
This website is primarily concerned with helping people attain their lifelong recovery goals through travel.
The idea of going to rehab may seem like an alien one that fills you with fear. Whilst the addiction rehab process varies between different clinics, you should expect your rehab process to follow the below basic stages:
We shall break down each of these steps individually below:
During the admissions process, a full assessment is offered. The information that’s collected during this assessment influences which particular rehab clinic that’s recommendable. Some rehabs will invariably be a better fit for your needs in comparison to others.
Each rehab clinic generally has its own unique admissions process, although there are many common elements amongst all rehab clinics. For instance, all rehab clinics will seek to discover your addiction history and any physical and mental health issues you suffer from.
Rehab clinics will tailor the type of treatment you will receive based on the information you provide during the assessment. The assessment is usually completed by an admissions officer initially. Upon arrival at the actual rehab clinic, you will usually be assessed by a psychiatrist or some other form of doctor.
Tailoring your treatment from the outset is a proven way to increase the effectiveness of your addiction treatment. You will also be much more likely to enjoy your treatment and see it through to a satisfactory conclusion when treatment is specifically tailored to your needs.
Addiction treatment may be divided into three core types. These types include:
The vast majority of modern rehabs offer option #3 as standard. Residential rehab takes place whilst you detox and whilst you begin to adjust to recovery. Outpatient then kicks in once you leave the rehab clinic. Many rehabs term this sort of outpatient treatment as ‘aftercare’. This is because this type of outpatient support is offered ‘after’ you leave the rehab’s 24/7 care.
Residential rehab is so-called because you are literally a resident within the rehab clinic whilst you undergo treatment. You will not return home during the evening, but instead, you will sleep in the rehab clinic. You will thus be removed from your typical place of life whilst you receive 24/7 care from the rehab clinics staff members in your time of need.
Residential rehab helps you to overcome your addiction without outside temptation and distraction. You receive expert medical care and you will also receive medication that helps you overcome painful and even deadly withdrawal symptoms.
Residential rehab is optional for some but compulsory for others. For instance, if your addiction is sufficiently advanced, you could suffer from lethal withdrawal symptoms if you are not sufficiently medicated. In this scenario, going to a residential rehab is non-negotiable. Undergoing a detox from home could simply result in your death.
Many people needing a detox may be admitted to a hospital. A hospital is not the ideal place to undergo a detox because you won’t spend enough time in hospital that’s needed for a complete rehabilitation to take place. People undergoing a detox from a hospital are much more likely to relapse because they did not receive therapy that addresses the psychological causes of addiction.
Instead, we recommend you undertake a detox at a rehab clinic. Here, you will receive a similar level of medical attention available at a hospital, but unlike a hospital environment, you will also benefit from an intensive therapeutic process.
Outpatient treatment is similar to residential rehab in many aspects. For instance, you will also benefit from therapy sessions. However, you will return home during the evening. Outpatient treatment may also entail a detox. Here, you will be given a ‘home detox’ kit. A nurse or a doctor may visit you before your home detox begins, but you will be in charge of your own medication regime once the detox begins.
A home detox is highly inadvisable. You could suffer a seizure during your detox, and because you are not surrounded by medical professionals, this seizure could be fatal. For this reason, we feel it’s just not worth risking a home detox, even if the cost is considerably more affordable than undergoing a residential detox.
At its core, a detox is about removing toxins from your system. A medicated detox is about removing toxins in a safe and assisted environment.
When you enter a rehab clinic, a detox will form the initial stage of your treatment. If you are addicted to drugs such as alcohol or opiates, you will be given maintenance drugs that allow the medical team to taper you off these drugs whilst managing withdrawal symptoms.
The severity and duration of your detox programme will depend on the severity of your addiction, your age, your weight, your height, your sex and your addiction history. In some cases, withdrawal symptoms suffered during a detox will be severe and you will require 24/7 medical attention.
Withdrawal symptoms arise because chemical changes occur in the brain when your substance of choice is removed. Withdrawal symptoms typically arise within hours after you stopped consuming your drug of choice. These symptoms may take around 4-5 days to fully subside depending upon the type of drug you are addicted to. Opiate addicts may experience withdrawal symptoms for up to 14 days after the drug ceased to be consumed.
The type of medications used to treat withdrawal symptoms will vary depending upon the type of drug you are addicted to. For instance, opiate addicts are typically given methadone or buprenorphine to reduce opiate withdrawal symptoms. People addicted to alcohol are given slow acting benzodiazepines such as chlordiazepoxide in order to reduce alcohol-related withdrawal symptoms.
Once your detox programme is complete, you will no longer experience physical withdrawal symptoms. However, you will still experience psychological withdrawal symptoms such as cravings for the substance you were addicted to.
Therapy sessions help you identify and tackle cues in your environment that are often termed ‘addiction triggers’. Therapy also helps you manage cravings so you do not relapse. Lastly, therapy helps you to tackle deep-seated mental issues that might be fuelling your decision to take drugs or to drink alcohol.
Therapy usually takes the form of group therapy, individual therapy and family therapy sessions. Individual therapy is also known as ‘one-to-one’ therapy. This form of therapy allows you to discuss your most intermate issues in private with a therapist. For instance, you may suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder because you were sexually abused as a child. Individual therapy sessions allow you to discuss these types of experience in a controlled and highly confidential environment.
Group therapy allows you to tackle your issues with your peers. Group therapy sessions are counsellor-led, but most of the learning takes place via group exercises and group discussions. Group therapy sessions are powered by peer-learning. This helps you to realise that many of your issues are experienced by many different people from diverse backgrounds. The group is encouraged to determine solutions to your problems via collaboration.
The vast majority of rehab clinics are highly concerned with your long-term recovery. For this reason, you will begin to attend free aftercare sessions once your rehab programme has concluded. Whilst your rehab clinic will assist your long-term recovery, the onus is very much on yourself to ensure your recovery is a success.
We encourage you to also join an AA or NA group in your area so you may begin to benefit from the 12-step process. AA and NA meetings take place across the globe, and it’s likely that multiple AA and NA meetings are taking place in the town where you live.
To find a rehab clinic near you, contact GO-RV today on 0800 326 5595. When you contact us, we will signpost you to a suitable rehab clinic in your area that’s right for your needs.
Once you enter the recovery process, you may share your recovery adventures by contributing to this website.