With addiction rates currently higher than the national average, there is a clear need for quality Alaska addiction treatment programs. Unfortunately, the most recent survey data indicates that only 11.8% of the 19,000 illicit substance users and 10.6% of the 39,000 alcohol dependents in Alaska receive the treatment they need.
Many hesitate to enter treatment because they simply do not know where to go. Before deciding on a facility, those in need would benefit from a greater understanding of what constitutes quality Alaska addiction treatment. The following information should help in that endeavor.
Qualities of Effective Alaska Addiction Treatment
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, thirteen qualities determine the efficacy of an addiction treatment program. Effective Alaska addiction treatment should therefore meet as many of the following criteria as possible:
- Personalized programming that accounts for individual patient characteristics
- Accounting for complex changes to the brain
- Meet multiple patient needs, whether physical or mental
- Specific attention to co-occurring disorders (i.e. dual diagnosis care)
- Readily available (no wait lists or delayed admissions)
- Adequate duration, whether through extended inpatient treatment or multiple care levels
- Provision of behavioral therapy, often individual and group counseling
- Use of medication when needed, such as for medical detox patients
- Monitoring and continuous supervision to prevent drug use
- Stages of care provided after medical detox
- Regular reassessment of the patient’s treatment plan
- Not necessarily voluntary
- Testing and treatment for infectious diseases common among substance users
Naturally, each client will differ in terms of which criteria matter most to their recovery. Substance users and their families should keep this in mind when choosing an Alaska addiction treatment program.
Alaska Addiction Treatment or Out-of-State Care?
Many quality treatment programs currently operate in the state of Alaska; however, Alaskan addicts and alcoholics often seek treatment out of state. In fact, those who seek out-of-state treatment typically appear more successful in their recovery.
The main problems with leaving Alaska for treatment are separation from your current support network and increased travel costs. Choosing an Alaska addiction treatment program gives you greater access to your family, as they will not need to travel as far to see you and participate in your recovery. The primary drawback is that you will also be closer to your triggers. Your favorite bar or your usual drug dealer are within easy reach, and this makes relapse prevention difficult for many who choose to seek treatment at home. With relapse rates anywhere from 40% to 60% according to national recovery statistics, it is important to take as many precautions as possible.
Furthermore, while there are many quality Alaska addiction treatment programs, recall that effective treatment criteria demand ready availability. Unfortunately, there are not many treatment centers to choose from in Alaska, and many of the best facilities have long waiting lists. This is why most Alaskans travel to other states such as California or Washington for their treatment. They are able to seek the best medical treatment in the nation without delay. Since they are no longer down the road from tangible connections to their old lifestyle, they are also better able to limit temptations. This greatly increases their long-term success rate.
Alternatives to In-State Alaska Addiction Treatment
In the end, everyone must choose what feels right for them; however, those who choose out-of-state treatment may need help finding resources if they have only looked at Alaska addiction treatment programs in the past.
Aspire Health Network provides some of the best Washington and California addiction treatment programs in the nation. One facility that might be of particular interest to Alaska-born patients is our Oceanview Treatment Center in Orange County.
Like all of our treatment facilities, Oceanview checks off the major criteria listed by the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Clients can pursue a full continuum of care involving many levels of treatment while receiving access to numerous behavioral and holistic therapies. Each patient’s highly individualized treatment program will account for any physical, mental, or emotional needs that may affect their recovery. Those who are homesick can take their mind off of it by exploring new interests, as we provide access to recreational activities such as paddle boarding, bonfires, and other fun outings that will make Orange County feel more like a second home.
Each of Aspire’s treatment centers offers these benefits, although they are all unique in their own way. For more information on out-of-state care options, please contact Aspire today. We will answer any questions you may have on our own treatment programs, the differences between Alaska addiction treatment and out-of-state treatment, etc. All you have to do is pick up the phone, and we will assist you free of charge.