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Finding Hope at Residential Treatment Centers

By March 12, 2019 No Comments
Residential Treatment Center

As alcohol and drug addiction have become significantly more problematic throughout the last decade in the U.S., the need for effective residential treatment centers is greater now than ever before. This article explains the trends of the addiction crisis in the U.S. and the need for residential treatment centers. It also discusses what to look for in an effective program to get the best chance of long-term sobriety and an addiction-free life!

 The Rising Addiction Crisis

America is grappling with an epidemic of alcohol use disorder and an opioid addiction crisis that is often silenced and concealed. Many victims hide their addiction from their loved ones due to guilt or denial. Until they reach a tragic breaking point. In 2015, an estimated 623,000 youth (aged 12-17) and over 15 million adults1 had an alcohol use disorder which involved uncontrollable and problematic drinking that causes lasting changes to the brain.2 As a result, over 102,000 Americans die annually from alcohol poisoning, drinking and driving, and other incidents related to alcohol consumption.3 In 2017, more than 70,200 Americans died from drug overdoses.4 That’s just a drop in the bucket compared to the 2.1 million Americans that currently struggle with opioid use disorder.5

A recent study by JAMA Psychiatry found that less than 20% of people with alcohol use disorder seek treatment.6 Another study by the National Institutes of Health determined that although 10% of American adults struggle with drug use disorder at some point in their lives, 75% of them do not receive any treatment.7

Why Aren’t People Getting Treatment?

The National Survey on Drug Use and Health determined a few key reasons why people who need alcohol or drug addiction treatment don’t receive it. Out of the 20.2 million people in 2013 that needed substance use treatment but didn’t receive treatment, only 4.5% of them reported that they perceived a need for it. Less than 35% of that group tried to get treatment while the other 65% made no effort to get help.8

The primary reasons for not seeking treatment include financial restrictions, not being ready to stop using, and feeling that treatment is inconvenient. Many people attempt to detox and recover at home, but they are met with extreme withdrawal symptoms and intense cravings that often lead to relapse and perpetual addiction.

The health risks of detoxing and recovering from an alcohol or drug addiction at home outweigh the benefit of the low cost. Medical detox and treatment at a residential treatment center can reduce the health risk, prevent the pain of severe withdrawal symptoms, and provide a better chance of long-term addiction recovery.9 Since medical management of detox and treatment provides the best safety and recovery for people with substance use disorders,10 at-home detox is never recommended.11

How to Choose the Ideal Residential Treatment Center

Drug and alcohol addictions are chronic diseases that are characterized by uncontrollable substance abuse despite the harmful consequences. These addictions can be treated, but not by simply stopping substance abuse. Most people need long-term or repeated professional assistance to be addiction-free for life.12 The best residential treatment centers provide a holistic approach that includes medical detox, medication management, addiction education, skills-building sessions, and referrals for support groups.13 Effective programs follow medical detox with addiction treatment to retrain the brain. The goal of treatment is to undo the damage that’s been caused by dependency on alcohol or drugs. Professionals will help patients identify and confront the underlying issues causing addiction.14

Addiction recovery is not just a step in the right direction toward a happier life. It’s a journey with bumps and turns, and you can’t fly through this journey on autopilot. If you’re not always in control, then you’re at risk of relapse. An effective residential treatment center understands that having a relapse after treatment doesn’t mean the patient is a failure. If it happens, relapse must be managed and learned from. Look for programs that will help you create a relapse-prevention plan and provide resources if you do experience a relapse.

Where is the Best Residential Treatment Center?

Schick Shadel Hospital in Seattle, Washington is the residential treatment center with the highest long-term success rate for addiction recovery in the country. An independent study found that one year after treatment, 69% of patients are still sober from their addictions15 and many enjoy the rest of their lives without a relapse. Schick Shadel Hospital provides a safe and effective medical detox program that keeps patients comfortable and healthy. After detox, our 10-day aversion therapy treatment helps patients retrain their brain and remove their dependence on drugs or alcohol.

Schick Shadel Hospital facilitates support groups in several locations to help patients continue their journey toward long-term recovery and sobriety. They help patients identify and cope with their underlying issues that led to addiction.

Living Proof that Residential Treatment Centers are Worth the Cost

Paul was a husband, father of two, homeowner, construction superintendent, college graduate, and had a successful football career under his belt. Yet what many people didn’t know was that behind the portrayal of a successful life, Paul struggled deeply with alcohol addiction and depression. Paul only descended deeper into his battle with addiction and depression due to his stressful career and missing the glory-days of being a football star. He hid it from his family and lived in denial of his problem. Paul occasionally had small turning points where his family’s disappointment or concern inspired him to quit alcohol, but he always returned to the bottle and got even better at hiding his addiction.

One day, Paul hit his tragic breaking point. The reality of his underground addiction suddenly came to light and cost him his job and threatened to tarnish his family relationships. The next morning, Paul flew to Seattle and checked in at Schick Shadel Hospital for detox and treatment. Paul started with medical detox followed by the 10-day aversion therapy treatment. In the process, he finally got professional help to identify the root of his depression and addictive behavior. Paul returned home to his family ready to let his actions prove that he was done drinking. He has now been sober for two years and feels that he has freedom in his life again!

To read Paul’s full story, CLICK HERE.



1 Alcohol Facts and Statistics | National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA). (2019). Retrieved 11 March 2019, from

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6 Grant, B., Goldstein, R., Saha, T., Chou, S., Jung, J., & Zhang, H. et al. (2015). Epidemiology ofDSM-5Alcohol Use Disorder. JAMA Psychiatry, 72(8), 757. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2015.0584.

7 10 percent of US adults have drug use disorder at some point in their lives. (2015). National Institutes of Health (NIH). Retrieved 11 March 2019, from

8 The NSDUH Report: Substance Use and Mental Health Estimates from the 2013 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Overview of Findings. (2014). Retrieved 11 March 2019, from

9 How to Safely Detox from Alcohol (Sponsored). (2019). WebMD. Retrieved 11 March 2019, from

10 At Home Drug Detox Methods – (2017). Retrieved 11 March 2019, from

11 Alcohol Detox at Home: How to, Risks and Alternatives. (2019). American Addiction Centers. Retrieved 11 March 2019, from

12 Treatment Approaches for Drug Addiction. (2019). Retrieved 11 March 2019, from

13 The Components of the Best Residential Treatment Programs. (2019). American Addiction Centers. Retrieved 11 March 2019, from

14 Principles of Effective Treatment. (2019). Retrieved 11 March 2019, from

15 Elkins, R., Richards, T., Nielsen, R., Repass, R., Stahlbrandt, H., & Hoffman, H. (2017). The Neurobiological Mechanism of Chemical Aversion (Emetic) Therapy for Alcohol Use Disorder: An fMRI Study. Frontiers In Behavioral Neuroscience, 11. doi:10.3389/fnbeh.2017.00182.

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