Preparing For Teen Treatment: It’s Not a Punishment

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Preparing for rehab and sending your teen to a teen treatment facility doesn’t have to seem like a punishment. The key is to start with compassion. A loving atmosphere will help everyone involved feel safe during what can sometimes be an uncomfortable situation. 

Teens need assistance dealing with challenges in a manner that makes them feel safe. Teen treatment will help your child face family and peers from a place of health and vitality.

A teen-focused treatment stay will also help your teenager learn how to manage their emotions and coping skills. Destructive behaviors, while having served as a buffer, will only make other issues worse in the long run. A teen treatment program will help kids see how their behaviors affect the brain as it develops.

Asking the Right Questions When Preparing for Rehab

When your child is in crisis with a mental health or drug addiction, as a parent, it’s important to be educated on possible treatment programs available. One of the ways to recognize a credible teen drug rehab and the proper way to prepare for rehab is by understanding the questions the facility asks you.

Some of the questions you can expect a teen drug rehab to ask about your teen include:

  • How long has your teen been feeling this way?
  • Has your teen been using drugs and alcohol?
  • What is your teenager’s drug or destructive behavior of choice?
  • Is your teen addicted to their drug of choice? Do they experience withdrawal symptoms when they are without the drug?
  • Does your teen have other issues as well? Criminal or violent past? Diagnosis of ADHD, hyperactivity, anxiety disorder, depression, eating disorder, etc?
  • Does your teen have friends? Do those friends use drugs or alcohol?

A treatment center that is preparing to help your teen will want as much information as possible. They will discuss your teenager’s unhealthy ways, as well as their interactions with family, friends, and teachers. You may also discuss their interests outside of school and work and the quality of their relationships.

Preparing Your Teen for Treatment

If you have made the decision that your teen needs treatment, and you’re preparing for rehab, you may be worried about how you are going to get them to go willingly. The truth is that they may not volunteer to go. If they are under 18, you have the right to send them anyway. However, most parents should start by taking all the appropriate steps to try and get their teen onboard.

The first thing you need to do is get yourself in the right head space to deal calmly with the challenges ahead. Don’t look at teen drug treatment as a punishment for your adolescent’s bad behavior. Destructive behaviors need to be treated carefully and with love. Take the approach—in your own mind and with your teen—that treatment is a place for them to get better and stay healthy in the future.

Confront Your Teen about the Need for Treatment

Before you take any further steps, you need to let your teen know you are aware of their behaviors.

Calmly explaining the changes you’ve seen in their behavior and your concerns for their safety is a good start. Give them a chance to speak and see if they will be honest with how often they use and why. Let them know that their drug abuse is not an option, and put solid consequences in place.

For a small percentage of teens, this may be enough to get them to willingly go to teen treatment. However, more than likely, many will deny their destructive behaviors. They may say that everyone does it and it’s no big deal. Also, many might try convincing you that that they have it under control. In this case, professional help may be necessary.

Hold an Intervention for Your Teen

A teen treatment intervention is a pre-planned meeting with a professional counselor present to mediate and guide the conversation in a productive manner. At this meeting everyone close to your teen is able to voice their concerns about your teen’s behavior. The goal is for everyone to state their thoughts in a non-judgmental manner. The teen will hopefully see how his or her drug use is hurting not only their own emotional and physical health, but also their loved ones.

The goal of the intervention is to get your teen to see that they have a problem and to willingly accept treatment.

If your teen is still unable to admit their addiction, seek out a teen treatment Admissions program for guidance. This is your right as a parent and the most appropriate option to keep your child safe.

Parents Need to Stay Strong

If you are still suffering from the emotional issues that began during your teen’s drug substance use and the related problems that often come up as a result–issues at work, fights with your partner or spouse–then your teen will be served when you get the treatment you need to begin your own personal healing process. Personal therapy is a great place to start, but group therapy sessions designed for those dealing with loved ones in recovery, and parent support groups consisting of other parents going through what you are will be even more effective in helping you to learn how to keep yourself safe while helping your teen do well in treatment and avoid relapse.

Stay Connected with Your Teen

While your teen is in a drug treatment program, staying connected will help both of you as you work toward your personal goals. You can do this by attending family therapy sessions with your teen at the rehab center, being available for phone calls, showing up for visits and calling for progress reports from time to time. Your teen will benefit from knowing that you care enough to stay as involved as possible and to invest in your relationship with them despite their previous behaviors.

Prepare a Safe Home While They are in Rehab

The atmosphere at home and the tenor of your interactions with your teen will set the tone for his or her recovery. If there is tension or chaos or anger lingering in the house, it is more likely that your teen will relapse. If your teen has begun the process of working through their issues, you have stayed involved throughout their treatment and supported them, and taken the time to care for yourself to make sure you are in a good and positive place, your teen is more likely to stay on track and focused on recovery.

Preparing Your Teen for Treatment

At Newport Academy, we have specialists waiting to listen to your questions and concerns, and assist you in taking the next step. We specialize in teen treatment and understand all the treatment issues that are specific to adolescents.

Give us a call, and let us help you get your teen back.