Mar 29

How to Choose Addiction Treatment Centers in Alberta

addiction treatment centers

Recovering from substance addiction is tricky. There’s a sense of shame entrenched in society at large surrounding drug abuse, which only makes treatment more challenging. Substance abuse relapse rates stand at 40-60%. With such a high potential for falling short, it’s no surprise that attempts at self-treatment often lead to intense relapse. 

Substance addiction is a disease that demands legitimate treatment, just like any other illness. Seeking out professional treatment is the best option for anyone struggling with drug addiction. The ideal addiction treatment center offers rehabilitation that is:

  • Convenient 
  • Discreet
  • Accessible

Given how many addiction treatment centers exist out there, how can you get started in narrowing down your options? 

Read ahead to find out more about the different types of addiction treatment centers, the cost and duration of addiction rehab treatment, and the criteria you should utilize when picking an addiction treatment center for yourself or your loved ones.

Types of Addiction Treatment Centers

Recovering from substance addiction is tricky. There’s a sense of shame entrenched in society at large surrounding drug abuse, which only makes treatment more challenging. Substance abuse relapse rates stand at 40-60%. With such a high potential for falling short, it’s no surprise that attempts at self-treatment often lead to intense relapse. 

Let’s take a quick look at the different types of addiction treatment center options you can choose from.

  1. Public
  2. Private
  3. Inpatient
  4. Outpatient

Public Treatment Center

A public rehab center is one that’s funded by the government. Since they are publicly funded, these programs tend to run at no or low cost for each patient, making them more accessible compared to their exclusive private counterparts.

A public drug addiction treatment center might experience:

  • Higher demand. Due to their accessibility, public addiction treatment centers experience longer waiting times and smaller windows of opportunity for treatment.
  • Limited customization. Since public treatment centers have fewer resources given the number of patients they’re expected to treat, their treatment methods tend to be less customized and more “one size fits all”.
  • Lack of resources. More demand for fewer resources results in a general lack of amenities, whether it’s facilities, recreation options, or treatment flexibility.

Public treatment centers may be a good option for you if you’re operating on a limited budget and can wait for treatment windows, or don’t require overly complex care.

Private Treatment Center

benefits of private treatment centers

A private treatment center is any rehab center that’s not funded by the government. These are private institutions with no official affiliation with the government.

Compared to government-sponsored treatment centers, private addiction centers are:

  • More expensive. Since they are not government-funded, private centers tend to be pricier. This can correspond to higher quality treatment, although it’s not a given since each private addiction treatment center is different.
  • Improved customization. A favorable staff to resident ratio translates into better customization for each patient. You may be able to adjust your treatment intensity, length, or method depending on preference. Also, individualized care is a regular part of private rehab centers.
  • Shorter waiting times. Lower demand for services at each private treatment center means you won’t need to wait as long for treatment. This also means you’re more likely to receive the full duration of treatment you need from a private center.

Due to the sheer diversity of private treatment centers, there’s no way to generalize their other characteristics. You’ll need to research individual private addiction treatment centers to find out what they can do for you or your loved ones.

Comparing the two side by side, here’s an overall breakdown of the advantages of private and public treatment centers:

Public Treatment CenterPrivate Treatment Center
Waiting TimeHighLower
Treatment FlexibilityLowHigh

Affordability isn’t the only major difference. Amenities, customization, flexibility, and other variables may all determine the ultimate quality of treatment you receive. 

Inpatient Addiction Treatment Center

Inpatient addiction treatment programs are residential. They demand patients check into a controlled facility for around-the-clock medical treatment. 

The ramifications of staying at an inpatient program are complex. Inpatient programs are believed to be more effective than outpatient ones, although the two are not exclusive: it’s common practice for patients to complete an inpatient program before moving onto outpatient treatment. 

There is a 30% success rate for patients who finish an entire inpatient program for recovery: it still needs to be supplemented by outpatient programs, social support, and counseling. Inpatient programs can be a double-edged sword in terms of social environment: they may provide a temporary safe space away from triggering environments, or make it challenging for an individual to access their regular social support systems. What works best for each person may vary by situation.

What are some attributes of an inpatient addiction treatment center?

  1. “Higher” success rate. 24/7 medical and emotional support designed for patients with addiction issues leads to higher success rates in treatment for serious addiction issues. As noted above, however, recovery from addiction at an inpatient program should be supplemented by other methods of support.
  1. Pricier. Inpatient programs are expensive when compared to outpatient programs since they are designed for around-the-clock monitoring and treatment.
  1. Better-suited for serious addiction. Inpatient programs are completely focused on detoxing, focusing on dealing with cravings and withdrawal symptoms. This translates into an intensive program that’s designed for people with extremely serious addictions.
  1. Disruptive. Needless to say, moving into a rehab center is all-consuming. You’ll need to take time away from home life, work, and account for an extended absence period during this period. Unfortunately, this means it’s not an accessible method of treatment for everyone.

Inpatient treatment is highly effective but is often reserved for more serious cases of addiction. It’s comparatively less affordable and requires more time commitment from a patient.

Inpatient Addiction Treatment Center

Outpatient Addiction Treatment Center

Outpatient addiction treatment programs are non-residential. They are part-time in nature, so the patient can receive treatment alongside their daily life.

Saying an outpatient program is not as effective as an inpatient program isn’t looking at the big picture. Oftentimes patients need a blend of both, and outpatient programs are better for lighter substance users.

Here are some attributes of outpatient addiction treatment centers:

  1. “Lower” success rate. When it comes to treating high-intensity addictions, outpatient programs may not be effective enough due to their lack of oversight into the patient’s schedule.
  1. Cheaper. Outpatient programs aren’t as expensive. Also, they are comparatively accessible since patients don’t need to step away from work to complete them.
  1. Better-suited for mild addictions. The average outpatient program is 10 to 12 hours each week, focusing on education about substance abuse, counseling, and instruction on how to manage cravings. While this is sufficient for mild addictions, it may not be suitable for intense addiction.
  1. Convenient. Patients can maintain a work and social life alongside their addiction treatment. Outpatient treatment can remain discreet if the patient wants to keep it a secret.

All in all, outpatient treatment is effective for mild cases of substance abuse, although it may not work if the patient needs drastic intervention.

Take a look below to find out how the two different types of addiction rehab compare for different types of patients:

Inpatient ProgramsOutpatient Programs
Patient TypeSerious addictionsMild addictions
ConvenienceRequires 24/7 complete dedicationCan be structured around a normal daily routine with work/socialization
Length28 days to six months, full-time3 months to a year, 10 to 12 hours a week

At the end of the day, inpatient and outpatient programs are each effective for different types of patients. Considering which one may work for you or your loved ones is a highly personal decision. Read on to find out more details about how each drug addiction treatment center breaks down by category.

Length of Treatment  

The length of addiction rehab treatment matters since it affects the patient’s schedule and may play a factor in the effectiveness of the treatment itself. Patients with milder addictions may not need as long of a treatment cycle, although maintaining support systems around staying sober remains impactful for the success of their treatment.

Rehab programs traditionally run for 30-day increments, with options for:

  • 30-day program
  • 60-day program
  • 90-day program

Although these are the most common treatment durations, each program is different. Some facilities offer longer-term inpatient programs or a hybrid model of outpatient and inpatient over a certain duration of time. Participating for 90 days or longer in either an inpatient or outpatient program improves recovery outcomes for patients.

So how do the public and private addiction treatment centers differ in their attitudes toward treatment length?

  1. Public treatment center. One of the issues with public addiction treatment centers is that they’ll often keep patients for only the length of a standard treatment cycle regardless of the need for treatment. For example, if their standard inpatient duration is 30 days, they won’t keep patients on-location even if they are struggling with addiction symptoms at that time.
  1. Private treatment center. Receiving treatment at a private drug addiction treatment center offers the advantage that patients can participate in a customized program. For example, if a patient was scheduled for a 30-day program but winds up needing more intensive treatment than the doctors estimated, it would be far easier to extend their stay than it would at a public treatment center. (The main downside for longer treatment is, of course, rising expenses.)

Inpatient and outpatient programs both offer different lengths of programs. Of course, the involvement level at an inpatient program would be higher, since attending a 30-day program would mean 30 days of staying at a specialized site designed for drug addiction rehab. Outpatient programs are a more part-time commitment designed for a gradual recovery.

Many patients choose a blended mode of treatment. For example, you might start with a 60-day inpatient program, then transition into an outpatient program for check-ups and counseling during your recovery process to guarantee that you don’t relapse.

Time commitment is a huge factor in receiving treatment. Thankfully you have plenty of options in figuring out what kind of treatment you want, so you’ll be able to pick and choose your treatment plan.

Cost of Treatment

As noted above, private treatment is more expensive than public treatment, and inpatient programs are more expensive than outpatient programs. But how does the pricing for addiction rehab break down more specifically?

  • How much can an inpatient rehab center cost? $6000 for a 30-day program is standard pricing. For a 60 or 90 day program, pricing can go up to $60000.
  • How much can an outpatient rehab center cost? The average cost is $5000 for a 90-day program. This does not include the cost of detox, which can cost anywhere from $1000 to $1500.

The costs associated with addiction rehab may seem high. It’s important to keep in mind that the human cost is even higher. During three years, over 10000 Canadians died from opioid overdoses alone. There are other intangible costs too, including:

  • Unemployment
  • Mental health issues
  • Destroyed personal relationships
  • Generational addiction
  • Crime
  • Poverty

Drug addiction treatment can be costly. What’s more costly, however, is the effects drug addiction can have on people’s livelihoods. Getting treatment stops drug addiction at the source, preventing these issues from destroying lives.

Funding and Financial Aid in Addiction Rehab

financial aid in addiction rehab

Finding the money to pay for addiction rehab isn’t easy. Fortunately, there are many grants dedicated to funding addiction treatment.

Government agencies have a responsibility to fight addiction as a huge social ill. In the United States alone, illegal drug abuse costs the nation $193 billion each year. It’s no wonder most governments distribute funds to organizations and individuals to combat addiction.

In Canada, nonprofit organizations, charities, educational institutions, and different levels of government are all eligible for grants. Seeking out an organization with one of these designations may help you qualify for treatment at a reduced price.

You may be eligible for substance abuse grants if you belong to any of the following identity groups:

  • A senior (60+ years old)
  • A youth (12-25 years old)
  • An ethnic minority (e.g. First Nation)

Don’t worry if you are not part of any of these groups. General public funds are available in Canada for drug addiction issues that don’t require you to have specific identities.

Criteria in Choosing Addiction Treatment Centers

Now that you understand the different types of addiction treatment centers that exist in addition to the financial and time commitments required for each, let’s take a look at what criteria you should be evaluating when picking a rehab center.

  1. Location. Finding a rehab center at a nearby location may be helpful, especially when it comes to an outpatient program where you’ll have to travel back and forth for each visit. On the other hand, landing too close to home may bring up stressful situations for some people, which might reduce the effectiveness of the treatment. 
  1. Amenities: The amount of amenities is increasingly important for an inpatient program where the patient will need to stay at a facility for days or months. Factors like room quality, food, recreational or therapeutic activities, and more may affect recovery.
  1. Cost. Realistically, the cost is a big factor to think about. Don’t let the absolute cost of a program deter you since you’ll often be able to afford a program through healthcare and grants. 
  1. Treatment options. Does your program offer medical detox? Addiction counseling or group counseling? Long-term outpatient treatment? Social support? You should be looking for a program that most closely matches your needs, ideally, all packaged together.

Finding the right drug addiction treatment center may be challenging. But it’s the first step toward finding a rewarding treatment program. Recovering from addiction is extremely challenging, and you deserve the best addiction treatment you can receive.

How to Get Started With Drug Addiction Intervention in Canada?

drug addiction intervention in canada

The best place to start looking is a directory that lists multiple options for treatment. The Canada Drug Rehab directory is a great example. You can search by addiction type, program or treatment category, specialized programs, and find additional information on anything from treatment to intervention.

Need a place to get started? Here are a few recommended programs to get you started.

  • Andy Bhatti Intervention Services. Andy Bhatti has years of experience in providing interventions for sexual abuse and addiction issues. He specializes in offering help to high-risk youth in foster care, supporting families in recovery, and Punjabi community addiction recovery.
  • Aurora Recovery Centre. This world-class addiction recovery center believes in long-term healing, supporting sustainable sobriety through personalized addiction recovery plans, inpatient/outpatient programs, family programs, stabilization support, and addiction awareness training for professionals.
  • Cedars at Cobble Hill. Based in Vancouver Island, Cedars offers addiction recovery programs of every breed, treating addiction with abstinence-based principles. They construct personalized programs for each patient, providing them with the full support needed for recovery.
  • Sunshine Coast Health Centre. Sunshine Coast believes in holistic rehabilitation for working men. With 24 hours medical care, psychiatry, and nutritional, psychological, and fitness support, they provide a wide range of treatments to cater to every patient’s need.

Addiction rehab is a long and difficult path and requires personalized professional treatment. Recovery may seem challenging, but it means finally moving past debilitating addiction into a lifetime of new possibilities. That being said, it’s an effort worth the challenge.

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