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How To Prepare For a Rehab Center

  1. To be prepared for rehab is half the victory. Before checking in, it is essential to prepare properly to get the most out of a treatment program. Although staff members at rehab centers are highly professional and helpful, you still need to be mentally and physically ready for the long battle ahead. In rehab, freedom is limited, the time away is long, and the experience is a drastic change from the ordinary home and work responsibilities. That’s why it is important to change your self-destructive behaviors, limit your distractions, and lower your worries at home. The following tips outline what you can do in the weeks leading up to your stay in rehab.


Frequently, individuals who are battling with an addiction are also battling the law. Many people are checking into rehab due to a DUI/DWI.  There is a good chance they are due to appear in court or are under the watch of a probation officer. The courts should be informed, either through correspondence or through an attorney that you will be entering a rehab center and will be unreachable for 30 days or more. Even if you are staying within city limits, the court should be notified on your whereabouts.


If you have bills that need to be paid, make sure you take care of them ahead of time. You can either sign up for automatic payments or ask a family member to handle your finances. If you are married, make sure your spouse is up-to-date with everything necessary to run your household. You don’t want to face financial problems after you return home from rehab.

Work and School

It is quite normal to worry about leaving work when going away for 3 months or more. On top of everything, you might be afraid of what your colleagues will think of you. When dark thoughts arise, just remember that people gossipping is far less worse than continuing with an addiction.  According to the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), you have 12 weeks of medical leave and your employer is obliged by law to give you your job back when you take time off. These legal matters should be resolved with the Human Resources Department. If you are self-employed, make sure you tell your clients about the leave of absence for personal reasons. You can avoid negative reviews from clients by referring them to another business.

If you are a high school student, missing one month of class can cause you to fall behind on coursework. If you are a parent of a high school student, make sure you talk to the school counselor about getting your child’s assignments ahead of schedule. Your child can work on those assignments during their free time at the rehab center. If you are a college student, think about getting a whole semester off to focus on your treatment.

Family and Friends

Leaving your children, spouse, elderly mother/father, and friends is the hardest aspect of traveling to a rehab center. Let your close friends know you will be taking time off to focus on your recovery.  Tell them you would appreciate their help and support along the way. If you are a mother or a father, let your children know that you are reaching out for help for something that is making you sick. Do not be afraid to answer their questions if they have any. Ensure your kids will be looked after by someone you can trust in order to have some peace of mind while you are away for treatment. Many rehab centers also involve the family in the recovery process so your loved ones might participate in family therapy sessions.

Keep a Journal

Document your feelings each day for 15 minutes and write down your memoirs in order to keep your mind occupied. The journal can consist of anything that is on your mind, a list of goals, what you would like to achieve, and things you wish to accomplish once you check out of rehab. There are many forms of journaling, including gratitude journal, spiritual journal, exercise journal, and stream of consciousness journal. This can reduce your stress levels, help you vent, and help keep track of your progress.

Packing Your Essential Items

Whether you are checking into a rehab center for 30, 60, 90 days or more, packing the essentials is of great importance. Rehabs have firm policies about what you can bring with you to treatment. They provide a recommended packing checklist and a list of prohibited items. Here is a general list of items to be packed that may help you feel more comfortable during your time away.


Bring with you any medications you have been prescribed. Make sure these medications are in original bottles with prescription instructions from the doctor. For vitamins and over-the-counter medication, you need to check with the rehab center to see what is permitted.

Personal Hygiene Items

It is important to have with you any personal hygiene items you usually use. Such items could be your toothbrush and toothpaste, shampoo and conditioner, a hair brush, lotions, makeup, and such. A quick check-up with the rehab center is suggested since essential items may be included among the provided amenities.


Pack comfortable clothes that are appropriate for the season or appropriate in general. Make sure your clothes do not display any pictures of drug-related items or phrases, or are sexually suggestive. You will have access to a washing machine so make sure the clothes you bring are easy to care for. Since many rehab centers have a pool and a gym for patients to use, make sure you pack a swimsuit and some workout clothing.

Important Documents

You will need to bring a government-issued photo ID such as a driver’s license, as well as your insurance cards. You will also need your checkbook, credit card or debit card to pay for treatment medications. Do not forget a small amount of cash for vending machines and store runs. 

What To Leave at Home

There is a wide range of items that should be left at home when packing for a rehab center, including:

  • Large amounts of cash
  • Jewelry
  • Expensive items of any kind
  • Pornography or products of a pornographic nature
  • No drugs or alcohol

For more information please call this Toll Free 24/7 Addiction Treatment Helpline at (844) 439-4765. This is a completely confidential call. If you have health insurance it may cover up to 100% of the treatment cost. So please call now!

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