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What Is Addiction Treatment Like?

Learn what addiction treatment is like from Dr. Paul Hokemeyer in this Howcast video.


For most people, the idea of treatment is terrifying and overwhelming, but in actuality treatment is very nurturing and structured. I work at the Caron Treatment Centers, which is one of the nation's largest treatment centers. It's a non-profit organization. So I have a lot of experience in this field.

Typically what happens with treatment is that a person goes into what's called a detox, if they're on drugs or alcohol and they need to be observed to see what sort of symptoms they will have and how closely they need to be monitored through their detox.

Once the detox is complete, they're placed in a community of other people who are also recovering from the disease of addiction. It's a highly structured environment. We do that because typically people who suffer from addictions don't know boundaries. They don't know boundaries, or they don't have structure in their lives.

So a treatment is a place where people can go out of the chaos of their lives and go into a place where they can experience recovery and hope. So in addition to the detox and in addition to being placed in a community of other people, there's intensive therapy that happens.

It's important if you're looking for a treatment center not to look for a place that's just going to babysit you, or not to look for a spa. Treatment is not babysitting, and treatment is not a spa. Treatment involves really hard work, the payoffs of which are extraordinary. So again, the thought of treatment for many people is terrifying and overwhelming, but in fact it's very nurturing, very healing, and very structured.

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