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Drug & Alcohol Rehab for Young Adults: Expectations vs. Reality

Drug and Alcohol Rehab for Young Adults

You can breathe a sigh of relief! After lots of tears and emotions, your child has finally agreed to break the cycle of substance abuse and enter into a treatment facility. If this is your first experience with addiction treatment, you probably have a lot of questions. Does treatment work? What do they do while they’re there? Is thirty days going to “fix” my son or daughter? Finding sobriety and long-term recovery is a commitment made by both the client and their loved ones and it is important to understand the ins-and-outs of young adult rehab. To set everyone up for success, having realistic expectations about treatment — and the journey after — is essential. 


Drug and Alcohol Rehab for Young Adults: The Admissions Process


Navigating the process for getting your loved one into treatment can seem daunting. At Momentum Recovery, we make scheduling your admission as easy as a phone call. During the initial call, our professional admissions team will collect basic demographic information, verify any insurance information (if being used), and speak with your loved one about their substance use history, what’s causing them to seek treatment, and any relevant medical information (such as drug and food allergies). The entire conversation usually doesn’t take any longer than 30 minutes! If insurance is being utilized, we will verify the benefits and put together a projected out-of-pocket financial estimate so you understand on the front end what treatment may end up costing. 

Getting the most out of your insurance can be tricky, and our team of experts will use their experience, knowledge, and relationships to make sure that you get the coverage you deserve. Insurance companies provide coverage based on a system they call “medical necessity.” In a nutshell, that means that the more severe a client’s substance use disorder is, the more time in treatment the insurance company will cover. For example, if the insurance provider decides that only 21 days are medically necessary, then you may have to pay out of pocket for the remaining days. Our team works with all major providers on a regular basis, so they know what information is needed to ensure that your coverage is maximized and medically appropriate.

This will all be discussed on the front end of the admissions process, so no one is surprised with a bill at the end of treatment and you can proceed with confidence. After the financials and insurance are clarified, we set up a time to admit your son or daughter. This is a crucial moment in any admissions process. It’s a best practice to strike while the iron is hot and admit within 24 hours of the admissions phone call, so as not to lose any momentum. We understand that travel arrangements may need to be scheduled, so we are flexible and will work with you to set up the perfect day and time to admit. We can even recommend transportation options if needed. From the beginning, we’ll work as a team alongside you to get your loved one the help they need.


Drug and Alcohol Rehab for Young Adults: Residential Treatment


At Momentum, our addiction treatment program is divided into four phases. The first phase is called “Dock,” and this phase resembles what most people think of when they think about addiction treatment. Residents live in our housing, take a step away from their lives, and begin the process of healing and recovery. During this time, your child will be engaged in dual-diagnosis group therapy, one-on-one therapy with a Master’s-level clinician, family therapy, and experientially therapeutic adventure activities. 

Momentum is dedicated to crafting personalized addiction treatment plans for each of their residents, so they can be better, happier, and experience a new sense of belonging. When starting in the Dock phase, there is generally a blackout period where you may not hear from your loved one directly. We like to encourage new residents to spend the first week getting focused on their new environment, meeting the rest of the community, and not being overwhelmed or tempted by any outside distractions. Don’t worry, though! Our clinical team will be in touch with you during this time to keep you informed. After the blackout period, your son or daughter will have the opportunity to call you directly from time to time. During the Dock phase, we are helping your child to build the foundation of their new life in recovery. This is just the beginning!

Drug and Alcohol Rehab for Young Adults: What Happens After?


After the completion of the Dock phase, our residents enter both the Anchor and Harbor phases together. Anchor works as a transition from 24/7 residential treatment into a more autonomous setting, where clients are living in Momentum’s sober living house located in Wilmington, NC, and spending half their day in treatment. The recovery-supportive housing makes up the Harbor phase, and this phase works in conjunction with Anchor to allow community members to practice new life skills and coping mechanisms as they explore their life in early recovery. All of this is done in a safe, supportive environment that provides accountability and processing as residents learn to live life on life’s terms. 


The fourth and final phase is called Compass. This is when our residents begin to navigate their recovery outside of the Momentum cocoon. The goal is to have your son or daughter in a place where they are able to live in housing of their choice, get a job or go back to school, and pick their life back up from where it stopped due to their addiction and mental health challenges. During this phase, they are still connected to our support system and work with an individual therapist and case manager. In addition, they are part of our alumni community, as well. 

The four phases we have created are meant to support your loved one through their first year of recovery. Dock is typically a month long, with Anchor and Harbor usually lasting six to nine months. Compass brings your child through that crucial first year. Empirical evidence shows that the longer a person stays in treatment, the better their chances of long-term recovery. 


Drug and Alcohol Rehab for Young Adults: A Quick Fix?


The disease of substance use disorder is a complex and progressive illness. As such, there is no quick fix to curing addiction, unfortunately. We work with a lot of families that believe if they send their child away somewhere for thirty, sixty, or ninety days, then everything will be better — for good. While that is a great place to start, it is just that: a start. Your child did not develop their bad habits overnight, and they will not be “cured” overnight either. Real change takes time, support, and a lot of dedication. 

In addition, you are probably aware that someone suffering from drug or alcohol use disorder doesn’t just harm themselves; their behavior impacts everyone around them. Because of this, the entire family needs and deserves healing just as much as the identified patient does. Momentum offers a family program exactly for this reason. Our family program will provide the education your family needs to support and love your family member as they learn to love themselves. While there is no quick fix, we’ve found this to be beneficial. All good things take time and it’s all designed for one purpose: to help your child be better, be happier, and belong — maybe even for the first time in their lives. 

To get started on your own loved one’s transformation, or for any questions, contact our team.