Can You Have a Personal Life While in Rehab?

Every year, drug addiction affects the lives of millions of people across the United States. Drug and alcohol addiction impacts people from all walks of life. With myriad drugs available through black markets, there are thousands of substances that can lead to serious addictions. Opiates, sedatives, psychedelics, dissociatives and other classes of drugs can have a negative impact on an individual’s social relationships, academic achievement, work life, social life and home environment. With a growing number of people facing addiction, rehab facilities have become very popular in recent years. However, not all rehab facilities are the same.

A Personal Life in Rehab

Maintaining a personal life isn’t the goal of rehab. However, strong social relationships are an important part of detox and rehabilitation. In most cases, rehab employees will work with an individual to minimize negative relationships and maximize positive ones.

Many rehab facilities are structured in a way that allows patients facing addiction to interact with each other. There are often several group-therapy programs each day. Depending on the facility one attends, there may be some extracurricular activities too. Higher-cost rehab facilities often provide outdoor recreation areas, pool rooms, swimming pools, horseback riding, hiking sessions, competitive sports, wrestling, yoga, gym access and much more. However, this usually applies only for private rehab facilities.

Public rehab facilities are usually more austere. While a public rehab center may have a recreation area and an activity room, it may not provide lots of extracurricular activities for those facing addiction.

Severe Addictions and Rehab

If an individual has a severe addiction to alcohol, sedatives or opiates, he or she will not have very many opportunities for socializing in the first few weeks of rehab.

Opiates, alcohol and sedatives can lead to a variety of negative symptoms during withdrawal. If an individual tries to quit using these substances too quickly, he or she may experience depression, anxiety, insomnia, gastrointestinal disturbances, appetite changes, seizures, suicidal ideation, anger management issues and more. In some cases, acute withdrawal from substances with sedative effects can be deadly.

For patients going through severe withdrawals, hospitalization may be necessary. For the first few weeks of this detox process, patients may receive tapered doses of an opiate or sedative. As the amount of the drug they receive is tapered down, there may be opportunities for socialization.

Once an individual has successfully detoxed from a substance, it’s time for rehabilitation. At this point, an individual will often join others who have detoxed from an addictive substance. Many rehab facilities will mingle post-detox patients with those suffering from mild addictions.

Mild Addictions and Rehab

For post-detox patients and those with mild addictions, there usually are not many restrictions on activity. If an individual has relapsed many times, he or she may be sent to a facility that limits movement. These patients may be required to remain on the rehab-facility grounds for up to three months. However, this will vary on an individual basis.

During the rehab phase, patients will have many opportunities to socialize with other patients. Caseworkers and psychiatrists will also work with patients to help them build a healthy social network. By increasing the number of positive influences in a patient’s life, it’s often possible to reduce the risk of relapse.

Patients without a criminal history may be free to leave at the end of the rehab process. For patients with a low income or a criminal history, a temporary stay in a halfway house may be necessary. A halfway house provides low-cost boarding for post-rehab patients. During this phase, patients have the freedom to pursue a personal life.

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