The Benefits of Long-Term Care For Trauma Recovery
If you have looked into different treatment centers in the United States, you have probably noticed that many offer 30, 60, and 90 day stays. Depending on a person’s financial situation, the severity of their trauma, and other factors, they may choose to stay for a shorter or longer period of time. This is also dependent on whether the person is struggling with addiction, which can influence how much care and treatment they may need. However, mental health professionals recommend a long-term stay based on multiple studies and statistics indicating the benefits it has. Here are some reasons why long-term treatment may be better for you, your health, and your chance for recovery.
Time Is a Gift
When you are recovering from trauma, addiction, and other mental health issues, your greatest asset can be allowing yourself the time to heal. The quote “time heals all wounds” is very accurate, but that’s only if you are willing to do the work that it takes to heal that requires patience and understanding that it is a process. Unfortunately, true healing cannot be achieved overnight but is absolutely possible to experience if you give yourself the time.
The reason that long-term treatment is beneficial in the healing process is that you are able to properly acclimate to the environment of the facility as well as develop a strong relationship with the community. You are also given the opportunity to invest in the time to open up and develop a strong therapeutic bond with your counselor or therapist. By extending your stay in treatment, you have the time to adjust to the schedule, build new friendships, and learn how to adjust to a new lifestyle in sobriety. The longer you can stay in treatment, the easier the healing process will be.
While shorter-term treatment stays are still helpful and provide the opportunity to stabilize and receive quality care, research shows that long term treatment that surpasses the normal 30-60 days can not only reduce relapses but gives you the time to process and heal from trauma. The first months of treatment are often where you will be detoxing and getting physically sober. In order to treat trauma, it is best to wait until your body has stabilized and is healthy enough to face the trauma of your past and still be in a safe environment to heal and recover.
It can be challenging to talk about the difficult memories and experiences you have experienced. Trauma healing is complex and requires professionals to guide you through the process. Receiving trauma treatment within the safety of a facility allows you to have the foundation and support you may need as you face the difficult emotions that can come up when addressing your trauma. You will be able to learn various coping mechanisms and strategize how to manage the emotions and triggers of your trauma experience with the support of your treatment team of professionals. The longer you can stay in treatment, you will be able to develop more skills so that you can apply them in real-life situations when you discharge from the facility. Having a team of professionals monitoring your progress and care through your trauma healing can provide a sense of hope rather than living in the darkness you may have been in for so long.
Building a Support Network
During the trauma healing journey, you may experience episodes of depression, anxiety, and feel drawn to isolation. The trauma recovery process is not linear and therefore you may have moments where you feel like you are going backward on your recovery path versus forwards. Having a supportive team of professionals and other individuals around you that share in your experiences will help to guide and support you during the ups and downs of the trauma healing process.
There is a powerful healing bond when you are sharing your recovery with others who have had similarly traumatic experiences or events occur. While you may not have the same traumas as the others you are in treatment with, the shared experience of healing together in a safe environment and building trust amongst your peers while you heal is a powerful tool in trauma treatment. Longer-term treatment allows for the time to truly build relationships that are based on trust and safety.
Oftentimes, trauma, and addiction go hand in hand as you may have used drugs and alcohol to numb the effects of the traumatic experience or to forget the painful memories. Unfortunately, addiction to drugs and alcohol can often make symptoms of depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress worse, and can in fact intensify the symptoms of trauma.
By entering treatment, you will most likely be living in a facility that is substance-free. Treatment programs provide this type of environment so that you do not have access to any substances that would hinder your healing process. Additionally, learning how to live a sober lifestyle will also help you to manage the emotions and potential triggers that may occur after treatment. A longer-term stay in treatment will allow you to have the tools to deal with potential triggers and not find yourself back in the throws of your addiction when you return home.
Practicing Coping Skills
It is common that once you start facing the traumas of your past, you may want to leave treatment early. Working with your treatment team and learning and developing new coping strategies to not only manage trauma symptoms but also manage the normal daily stressors of life will be vital for your success in the trauma healing process. It is important to stay in treatment despite possibly having the urge to leave.
Longer-term stays in treatment teach you what strategies can be used to deal with the potential stress and anxiety of your life because your treatment team will have you start implementing these skills while you are in treatment. They can provide the space to simulate real-life challenges and moments so that you can develop the resilience and skills to face whatever life may throw at you once you leave.
At Choice House, we have read the statistics that say extended stays in treatment centers are more beneficial for clients. This is why we require a 90-day minimum at our center. This helps our patients get sober, have the proper time to talk about and heal from trauma, learn and implement coping strategies, build their support network, and have the time needed to help sustain long-term recovery. We want the best for our clients, and that is why we stand by the 90-day extended treatment model. While there are circumstances that may indicate a client can heal with shorter stays, we still believe 90 days will be more beneficial for them. With our professional staff and treatment modalities, we believe that our clients will not only conquer their demons but thrive in their recovery. Long-term sobriety is always the goal, and this can be achieved through a long-term stay at our facility. For more information about extended treatment at Choice House, contact us at (720) 577-4422.