Residential Treatment

Table of Contents

What is Residential Treatment?

Residential treatment centers allow people to leave their homes and live at a treatment facility while they pursue recovery and get therapy. Drug rehab or alcohol rehab is often the reason for someone staying at a residential treatment center.
Residential treatment is often a good idea for those who are struggling with substance abuse, PTSD, or eating disorders. It can also help uncover deeper issues such as mental health issues, past trauma, or behavioral problems, and provide therapy and a consistent structure as coping methods to address these issues. A controlled environment, surrounded by a good support system, and away from temptations make residential treatment a good start for recovery.

Residential vs. Inpatient

Residential treatment programs can often sound similar to receiving inpatient treatment. Both involve living at a treatment facility for a duration of time. However, the main differences come from the length of the program, the type of treatment that is received, and the environment the individual will be living in. For example, inpatient treatment programs are often a shorter duration than when someone stays at a residential treatment center.


The area that patients live in while attending a residential treatment center will often feel more like a home environment because residential treatment may last up to six months or more depending on the needs of the patient. Inpatient treatment facilities are often more similar to the conditions of a medical facility.


Inpatient treatment programs focus more on getting a patient through the initial stages of recovery, where residential treatment centers often focus on deeper forms of therapy and working on dealing with past trauma and other mental health issues that may be causing someone distress.

Long-Term Residential Treatment

Long-term residential treatment involves staying at a treatment center for six months or longer. People who may benefit from long-term treatment are often those who have chronic emotional, behavioral, or psychiatric issues. At times, addiction can be caused by mental health issues, problematic behavioral patterns, or past trauma. These deeper issues can be the root of the problem when someone is struggling with addiction.
Staying at a residential treatment center long-term can be very effective for someone in recovery from substance use disorder. It can provide a constant structure and support system during treatment, and provide therapy to help deal with past traumas and poor behavioral patterns. It may also provide supports and you transition back to everyday life when the program is over.

Inpatient Treatment

Like residential treatment, inpatient treatment involves staying at a treatment facility for a period of time. Inpatient treatment centers will provide a controlled environment to focus solely on recovery.

Around the Clock Support

In cases of a more serious addiction, inpatient treatment may be a good idea so around the clock medical support and attention can be provided for complete recovery. Dealing with addiction isn’t easy, so it can be beneficial for someone struggling to have a consistent schedule and a good support system around them throughout the day.

Effective Treatment

Inpatient treatment has been shown to be effective and it is often more effective than outpatient treatment, where someone would visit a treatment center throughout the week but still be living at home. Having a steady supportive environment, like the one provided by an inpatient treatment center, is beneficial for creating more positive behavioral patterns and can help learn skills to cope with the stresses of everyday life.

Short-Term Residential Treatment

Short-term residential treatment involves staying at a residential treatment center for 30 days or less. It is often a vigorous treatment program, as there is less time to get through the recovery process during a short treatment program.
Staying at residential treatment centers for a short period of time is often similar to inpatient treatment programs. Some of the main reasons why someone may opt for short-term treatment would be budget restrictions, not wanting to be away from their family for too long, making it a good option if the addiction is less severe.
Short-term treatment can be effective, but the patient needs to be dedicated to recovery and must be willing to continuously work on maintaining sobriety after leaving the treatment facility.

Does Staying in Rehab Longer Improve Recovery Chances?

There is no exact answer to how long someone should stay in a rehab facility. Oftentimes it will depend on the needs of the individual. This involves numerous different factors, such as the severity of the addiction, underlying issues someone might have, and how much effort someone is willing to put into their recovery program and maintaining sobriety. However, therapists will often say that longer stays at a treatment center are often more beneficial because it provides the time necessary to focus on recovery and learn skills to cope with other underlying issues.

Services Available in Residential Treatment

There are many services available at residential treatment centers to help with recovery from addiction, as well as to work on any underlying issues, and help transition back to everyday life after the treatment program is over


For drug or alcohol rehab, detox is often a necessary first step when undergoing recovery. Many drugs can create physical dependence, resulting in cravings and painful withdrawal effects. Withdrawal can be a tough process and it’s a good idea to have an around the clock medical staff present, which is available at residential treatment centers.

Individual Therapy

Individual therapy can be beneficial in a treatment program for reshaping behavioral patterns to learn how to cope with the stress of everyday life without the use of substances. There may also be other underlying issues such as mental illness or past trauma that is causing an addiction. Therapy can help deal with those issues and give the resources necessary to continuously cope with those underlying issues more positively.

Group Therapy

Group therapy involves talking through issues involving addiction and other personal struggles in a group setting surrounded by individuals who are also struggling and may be able to relate. Group therapy can be beneficial in that it can make someone not feel like they’re the only one going through these problems or struggling with an addiction. It can help create a broader perspective that these things affect many people of all different backgrounds. It can also create a sense of community by being surrounded with people who can relate to what you’re going through and be able to help and support each other.

Family Therapy

At times, an addiction may be caused by issues going on in the home life. Other times, people may simply need family support during transitioning back home from the recovery program. For both these things, family therapy can be beneficial. Family members may struggle to understand what someone is going through when they are in recovery from addiction and family therapy can create a more supportive environment to talk these things through.

Psychosocial Education

Psychosocial education help teach people about their illness and explain how the treatment process will work. Family members or friends may also be involved and receive psychosocial education to ease tensions at home. This can also help them assist the recovery process by creating a more supportive environment.

Life Skills

When undergoing recovery, it will be important to learn life skills that help maintain sobriety once they transition back to everyday life. These may be things such as avoiding temptations, learning coping skills, and creating positive behavioral patterns.

Support Groups

Support groups are often used in residential treatment centers to create a sense of community. When going through rehab it is important for someone to know that they’re not alone and not be the only one who struggles. Meeting people who deal with similar things can help create a supportive environment and create a different perspective on how to look at addiction.

Planning to Prevent Relapse

Having a plan in place is very important as you transition back to normal life. This could be things like career goals, attending support groups, and creating plans for how someone will deal with temptations that may come up in day to day life.

Mental Health Facilities

If you or someone you know is struggling, there are resources available to get the help you need. Call Iris Healing today.

Residential Mental Health Treatment

For someone living with serious mental health issues, a mental health facility may be a good environment in times of support. A mental health facility will provide a stable environment that will give a well-rounded mental health treatment program. This may involve individual therapy, group therapy, vocational or educational counseling, and treatment for co-occurring addictions.

Anxiety Treatment Centers

Anxiety treatment centers can be beneficial for those who deal with serious levels of anxiety that are affecting their day to day life. It can provide a consistent structure, support groups, and therapy to help learn the skills to cope with anxiety.

Inpatient Treatment for Depression

If someone is experiencing serious depressive symptoms it could be beneficial to get inpatient treatment for depression. Depression may cause suicidal thoughts or tendencies and, in these cases, having around the clock support can be important for safety. Inpatient treatment for depression can provide a support system, therapy, and the skills to cope with depression and other underlying traumas or issues.


All in all, residential treatment can be beneficial for a wide range of issues. It can help give a solid support system and structure. If you or someone you know is struggling and you think residential treatment may be a good option, there are resources available. If you are struggling and don’t know where to go, Iris Healing may be able to help.

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