Last updated on July 1st, 2019 at 01:35 pm
Measuring the success rate of drug rehab can be difficult. However, the cold, hard facts are always easy to understand.
Over 70,200 people died as the result of drug overdoses in 2017. Moreover, an alarming 90% of addicts who need rehab the most never seek treatment.
If you’re in the small percentage of addicts who are getting the help you desperately need, then this rehab checklist is for you. Knowing what to expect from the rehab experience will improve your chances for success.
From simple things like how to pack and what to bring to understanding what the day-to-day routine will look like, this checklist will prepare you for the next step in your recovery.
So, take a deep breath. Let’s help you get ready for the first day of the rest of your life.
Your Rehab Checklist
Every rehab facility is a little different in terms of rules and regulations, but most follow the same basic principles. If you’ve already chosen your facility, congratulations!
Upon admission, the rehab staff will go over everything you need to know. This will include available resources, what items and behaviors are prohibited, the rules surrounding visitors and phone calls, and much more.
Your rehab checklist should include physical items to bring as well as emotional ways to prepare. Let’s take a look at both.
What to Bring
When packing for rehab, remember: you want to be as calm and comfortable as possible during your stay. So, you may want to bring items that help remind you of home.
A Journal and Writing Materials
Journaling is one of the best forms of therapy for rehab patients. In a personal journal, you can write about your fears, worries, and concerns. You can also use your journal to document your journey and your triumphs.
Entering rehab is tough; it’s an emotional decision for most addicts. And while there are counselors and fellow addicts to talk to, a journal offers a private release for your thoughts and feelings.
Since most rehab facilities limit phone calls and visitors, be sure to bring stationary and some pens or pencils. Writing letters to friends and loved ones might become your favorite past time. And, chances are, they’ll love to hear how well your recovery is going.
A List of Names and Phone Numbers
Do you know your friends and loved ones’ phone numbers by heart? Probably not. After all, with the advancement of technology, no one really needs to remember phone numbers anymore.
Most rehab centers don’t allow cell phones or any devices that connect to the internet. For this reason, compiling a list of names, phone numbers, and addresses before entering rehab is a good idea.
By doing this, you’ll never be too far from an encouraging phone call or letter.
A significant part of rehab is physical activity. You’ll participate in a wide range of activities from walking and hiking to yoga and even organized games.
So, bring comfortable clothing and sneakers that won’t restrict your movement or ability to focus. Rehab is not a fashion show, so leave your high-heels, skinny jeans, and cocktail dresses at home.
And don’t forget to pack your bathing suit! Many facilities plan day trips to local pools or water parks, and some may even have their own swimming pool on site.
This may come as a surprise, but double-checking your toiletries is an essential part of preparing for rehab.
Rehab facilities are very particular about the kinds of toiletries you can bring. Depending on how sharp they are, you may have to leave your tweezers, nail files, and nail clippers at home.
It’s also worth noting that toiletries that contain alcohol are prohibited. So, if your usual brand of mouthwash contains alcohol, leave it behind.
Other washroom items like hairspray and hand sanitizer may also contain denatured alcohol, so check your labels carefully. The last thing you want to do is bring contraband to rehab— especially alcohol detox programs.
How to Prepare Before You Go
Your suitcase isn’t the only thing that needs preparing before you enter rehab. After all, you’ll be removed from life as you know it for several weeks or even months.
Here are a few ways to mentally prepare yourself before entering a recovery program.
Take Care of All Obligations
Do you have a job? Financial obligations? A family that relies on you? If so, it’s essential to address these and any other responsibilities you have before entering rehab.
If you’re a parent or spouse, spend some uninterrupted quality time with your loved ones before checking in to rehab. Leave behind letters and photos for your family to turn to when they’re feeling lonely or detached.
Also, be sure to put a trusted family member or friend in charge of paying your bills (with money you’ve saved) during your stay. This way, you’ll be up-to-date on all your payments even while you’re away. You don’t want to return home to any past due bills or debt.
If you’re an employee, be sure to talk to your boss and the HR department to prepare for your temporary departure from the office. Under the Family and Medical Leave Act, most employees can utilize up to 12 weeks of medical leave. This means that your job is secure during your rehab stay.
Rest assured that most employers will support an employee’s decision to get sober. After all, they want the healthiest version of you showing up to work each day.
Remember, your loved ones will most likely support your decision to get sober. And, as much as they’ll miss you, they’ll be cheering you on every step of the way.
Adopt a Positive Mindframe
“Mind over matter” is a powerful concept. Even if you know that you need rehab to get sober, it can still be scary.
Try to relax and calm yourself before the check-in day. What helps you destress? Yoga? Meditation? Artistic expression? Whatever it is, take some time to unwind; mentally and physically prepare yourself for the journey ahead.
Don’t enter rehab with a negative attitude, either. Positive thoughts breed positive results. Don’t give up on yourself before you’ve given rehab a chance.
Today is the First Day of the Rest of Your Life
Congratulations! You’ve decided to seek help for your addiction. All that’s left to do is compile your personal rehab checklist.
This process includes deciding what physical items to bring with you and mentally preparing yourself as well as those closest to you. You have a challenging but rewarding road ahead.
Put yourself in the best position for success by creating a practical rehab checklist.
Do you know an addict in your life who needs help? Learn more about planning an intervention and saving a life.
(n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.dol.gov/whd/fmla/
Nguyen. (2017, December 07). 10 Surprising Benefits Of Keeping A Journal. Retrieved from https://www.huffpost.com/entry/benefits-of-journaling_n_6648884
Opioid Overdose. (2018, December 19). Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/drugoverdose/data/statedeaths.html