The most effective rehab for teens utilizes evidence-based treatments personalized for the specific needs of young people. That said, many teenagers successfully engage with addiction treatment in a regular drug and alcohol rehab center, assuming the program is tailored to their requirements.
When it comes to treatment for alcohol use disorder or substance use disorder, adolescents have different needs than older people abusing drink or drugs, and it’s never been more important to provide for these needs.
The most recent National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH 2020) shows that among 12 to 17-year-olds in the United States:
- 700,000 teens have alcohol use disorder.
- 1.2 million teens have substance use disorder.
- 1.5 million teens have either alcohol use disorder or substance use disorder.
The same data shows that just 106,000 youths in this demographic obtained any kind of treatment. This roughly mirrors estimates that only 10% of adults requiring addiction treatment receive any type of therapy.
Whether you’re a young person grappling with addiction, or you have a son or daughter experimenting with alcohol or drugs, the more you learn about the most effective addiction treatment, the more chance there is of finding a suitable teen-centered program.
What to Expect at a Rehab Center for Teens
Rehab for teens can be broadly categorized as follows:
- Inpatient or residential rehab
- Outpatient rehab
The core difference between these two forms of treatment is that teens remain at a residential facility for the duration of an inpatient program. Outpatient treatment provides access to broadly similar services, with teens attending therapy sessions and then returning home overnight.
For more severe addictions, especially with co-occurring mental health conditions, inpatient drug rehab for teens provides the most intensive type of treatment with 24/7 medical supervision. Medical detox can be provided at a residential rehab center for teens, streamlining withdrawal and cravings in more severe alcohol use disorders and substance use disorders.
In addition to the comprehensive and intensive treatment available in residential rehab, teens will also be removed from the triggers and peer pressure that likely contributed toward addiction.
Most teens can benefit from the therapies delivered in residential rehab in an outpatient setting – more on outpatient rehab below.
Regardless of which form of treatment makes the smoothest fit, teen rehab should offer research-based treatments just like those used in traditional drug and alcohol rehab centers. Many teen-specific rehabs will tailor some of these therapies to meet the age-specific needs of adolescents.
Research shows that teens and young adults have less difficulty stopping the use of substances than adults, and they are also less likely to manifest withdrawal symptoms during detox.
Many young adults with co-occurring mental health conditions like depression or anxiety self-medicate the symptoms with substances. All good teen rehabs will offer integrated dual diagnosis treatment, helping youths to unpack both conditions simultaneously and to stop the vicious cycle of self-medication.
Effective teen drug and alcohol rehabs provide a range of behavioral and psychosocial interventions centered on the specific needs of teenagers. Expect a combination of the following therapies:
- Individual counseling
- Group counseling
- CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy)
- DBT (dialectical behavioral therapy)
- MAT (medication-assisted treatment)
- Experiential therapies
- Family therapy
By engaging with this evidence-based array of treatments personalized to account for any co-occurring disorders, teens can:
- Learn skills for sober living
- Better manage cravings to avoid relapse
- Make healthier lifestyle choices
- Improve interpersonal relationships
Perhaps you feel the treatments outlined above would benefit your teen but you don’t like the idea of them heading to rehab for a month or more. Alternatively, you may not have the funds in place to meet the high costs of residential rehab.
Fortunately, your teen can connect with these same therapies while remaining at home for the duration of the program. All they need to do is head to a rehab center for weekly therapy sessions before returning home to implement the skills they have learned in a real-world setting.
Outpatient Rehab for Teens
Not only is outpatient rehab much more affordable than residential treatment, but most health insurance policies meet the costs of outpatient addiction treatment.
Outpatient drug rehab for teens involves individual and group therapy sessions held on weekdays at a treatment center. Parents and families may also attend some of these sessions, and family members may also have access to counseling services. After therapy, teens return to the family home.
Where inpatient rehab lasts for a specific length of time – typically between 30 and 90 days – outpatient teen rehab offers therapy several times weekly for as long as the teen needs.
This does not apply to the two more intensive forms of outpatient treatment:
- IOPs for teens
- PHPs for teens
Intensive outpatient programs offer up to 15 hours of weekly therapy in an outpatient setting, while partial hospitalization programs are a full-time outpatient program delivering up to 35 hours of therapy and counseling. IOPs and PHP are time-limited outpatient programs, usually lasting between 3 and 4 months.
Outpatient rehab for teens can be effective for less severe addictions, or for teens who have completed a residential treatment program and need to step down the continuum of care to a less intensive form of treatment.
Alcohol Rehab for Teens
While underage drinking might be commonplace, that doesn’t mean it is safe or advisable in any circumstances.
Maybe you are concerned that your teen is experimenting with alcohol, whether through binge drinking or through other abusive patterns of alcohol consumption – drinking alone in their room, for instance.
Early intervention is key if you feel your teenager is becoming dependent on alcohol for many reasons, including:
- Binge drinking begins as early as 12 years old in some people. For teens who binge drink, there is a heightened risk of alcohol poisoning, dangerous and potentially deadly.
- Teens abusing alcohol more frequently engage in risky behaviors (driving under the influence or unprotected sex, for example).
- Adolescents who abuse alcohol could trigger long-term health conditions.
- Teenagers abusing alcohol heighten their risk of developing alcohol use disorder in later life.
- Alcohol abuse negatively impacts teen brain development, potentially leading to learning problems, memory loss, and dementia.
If you establish that your teenage son or daughter has alcohol use disorder, they are faced with a chronic and relapsing condition that is treatable but not curable. You’ll maximize their chances of sustained recovery by connecting them with a professional program tweaked to meet the needs of teens.
Even better? With outpatient alcohol rehab, you can help your child achieve this while continuing to enjoy the comfort and stability of living at home.
If you discover that your teen needs residential rehab, you can remain connected to them via family therapy sessions.
Getting the right treatment as outlined above, combined with effective aftercare and ongoing support, could mean the difference between your teen struggling with substance use for years and reclaiming their sober life right now.
Drug Rehab for Teens
If your teen is showing the signs of drug addiction, getting them to admit that they have a problem and need help could be challenging.
Beyond this, it can be tough to work out whether your teen’s dramatic mood swings are the result of rapidly shifting emotions in adolescence or of something more sinister like substance abuse.
Watch out for mood swings accompanied by changes to behavior and appearance, such as:
- Dip in personal hygiene
- Bloodshot eyes
- Sleeping more than usual
- Losing interest in favored activities
- Becoming socially withdrawn
- Socializing with new groups
- Weight loss or weight gain
- Nosebleeds or runny nose
- Bruises or scabs on arms
- Aggressive, angry outbursts
Many teens abusing drugs have co-occurring mental health conditions like depression, anxiety, or ADHD. In the case of dual diagnosis, the most effective treatment is integrated, whether that’s delivered in outpatient drug rehab for teens or an inpatient juvenile drug rehabilitation center.
Drug rehab for teens will provide access to the suite of services outlined above, including counseling, psychotherapy, holistic therapy, and family therapy, as well as medication-assisted treatment as appropriate.
Finding a Rehab for Teens Near Me
Choosing a drug rehab center for teens can be overwhelming and confusing. It doesn’t need to be that way, though.
Our qualified addiction counselors can show you how to choose an alcohol rehab center or drug rehab for your teen and can also connect you with suitable services near you.
Alternatively, the drug treatment programs at our state-licensed centers incorporate all the most common evidence-based treatments for providing a tailored approach suited to your teenager.
At The District Recovery Community, our staff has the skills, experience, and qualifications to successfully treat teen addiction. Beyond this, our treatment centers are stylish, comfortable, and well-presented to ensure that our patients feel safe and supported.
It’s important not to delay seeking support for your teenage child. We are ready and waiting for your call. Call us today at 844.287.8506 and we’ll help you find the best rehab for minors.