FAQ » What to Expect

What to Expect

The First Steps

Taking the first step to seek treatment for a substance abuse problem can feel overwhelming. If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction, learning more about what to expect can help you feel a little more at ease about the process.

After you contact Destination Hope, we will set up an assessment time and you will have a chance to provide the admissions professionals with background information. During the assessment, you’ll meet with an experienced addiction treatment counselor. The goal of the assessment is to determine the level of care you need and what type of treatment would be most beneficial for you.

Treatment Methods

A drug rehabilitation program helps clients with substance abuse and addiction issues gain control over their lives with tried-and-true treatment methods. The main treatment method is psychotherapy, which comes in a number of forms such as one-on-one, cognitive-behavioral, family, and group therapy sessions. Psychotherapy is successful because it works to help clients uncover the underlying causes of their addictions. The insights they gain can serve as a tool for the recovery process and for self-improvement in other areas of life (i.e. self-confidence, personal relationships).

Clients attend support group meetings, receive education, and participate in lifestyle counseling. Lifestyle counseling is a big part of the lifelong journey of recovery as it helps clients tailor their lives to be more accommodating to and accepting of healthy changes. It also helps them abstain from temptations. Stress and boredom are two major triggers for substance abuse and lifestyle management and relapse prevention strategies help manage these triggers properly.

If you have been diagnosed with a co-occurring mental health condition, such as depression, anxiety or bipolar disorder, then longer treatment programs that include dual diagnosis care may be a better fit for your recovery needs. Dual diagnosis programs simultaneously address substance abuse and mental health conditions. This integrated approach to care leads to better outcomes than programs that solely address addiction, according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness¹.

Treatment Length

There’s no set period for treating substance abuse since many different factors affect the length of time that you may need to receive treatment. Think of addiction treatment as an opportunity to learn an entirely new set of behaviors and a new way of thinking about your world. These behaviors will help you lead a healthy and productive sober life. You may not achieve perfect lifelong recovery after one stay in a rehabilitation program, but selecting the right program that offers you the support and treatment you need for long-term sobriety is an important step. A longer stay in addiction treatment builds a stronger foundation for recovery and sobriety. In general, 90 days is the recommended minimum length for an inpatient treatment program, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse².

No one at your drug rehabilitation program should force you to follow your program. This is not an effective approach and is just not how recovery works. To successfully enter a healthier life of recovery, you have to do more than just attend a rehabilitation program and participate in the treatment methods and activities. Successful recovery requires your hard work, commitment, and dedication to getting better.

Treatment Gains

  • New supportive friends: Before addiction treatment, it’s likely that there were people in your life who supported your addictive habits. These may have been people you abused substances with, people who provided you with these substances, or people who enabled your drug abuse. A drug rehabilitation program can help you differentiate between the people who support your success and the people who can bring you back down into addiction.
  • Replace unhealthy habits with healthy ones: Part of recovering from addiction is changing your habits. One such habit might have been to reach for substances when you were bored. A drug rehabilitation program can’t make boredom go away, but it can help you come up with healthy alternatives for unhealthy behaviors.
  • Explore your passions: Think about when you were young. What did you love doing? What did you hope to do when you grew up? Chances are, some of these same sources of inspiration still lie within you. When you’re locked in addiction, it can be tough to find the motivation or the desire to pursue your passions. Unlock them again in your recovery, and don’t be afraid to try something new.
  • Manage your triggers: As part of your drug rehabilitation program therapy, you can work with professionals to help identify your triggers—the things that make you want to use. When you know what those triggers are, you can come up with ways to combat them or avoid them when possible. Managing your triggers makes life look much brighter because you know how to deal with whatever comes your way. Your personal triggers can be anything from spousal problems to socializing with friends who once used with you. There are also two major triggers that affect all clients – stress and boredom. You can learn ways to manage stress as well as solutions for fighting off boredom.
  • Newfound energy: Drug addiction saps your health, and with it, your energy levels. Addiction may keep you from eating well, sleeping enough, and getting a good amount of exercise. Once you shift into recovery, you may find that you have the energy you’d forgotten about. Embrace it! Get out there and say yes to life with a drug rehabilitation program.



  1. https://www.nami.org/learn-more/mental-health-conditions/related-conditions/dual-diagnosis
  2. https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/principles-drug-addiction-treatment-research-based-guide-third-edition/frequently-asked-questions/how-long-does-drug-addiction-treatment


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What to Expect