Last updated: 04/12/2019
Author: Addictions.com Medical Review
Reading Time: 4 minutes
Addiction treatment centers are located nearly everywhere to help people across communities overcome their struggles with drug and alcohol abuse. In some instances, leaving home and traveling somewhere else for treatment can give you a clean break at making a fresh start, and separation from places and people who may have been driving your addiction. The decision surrounding whether you should travel for treatment should be based on your personal health needs, and on your level of exposure to negative influences that may otherwise interfere with your recovery.
What are the Benefits of Traveling for Treatment?
Traveling for addiction treatment offers countless benefits for your recovery. First, traveling away from home removes you from triggers that may be present in your usual, everyday environment. Exposure to triggers makes you more susceptible to cravings and urges to use, and can interfere with your ability to concentrate on your recovery.
Other benefits associated with traveling for addiction treatment:
- Separate yourself from negative influences who may expose you to drugs and alcohol.
- Put distance between yourself and familiar places you associate with drug and alcohol use, such as clubs and bars.
- Remain discreet and prevent coworkers, neighbors, and others from learning about your personal, private struggle with addiction.
- Feel safer as a result of removing yourself from dangerous people and situations involving drugs and alcohol.
- Escape various stressors associated with daily life that may interfere with your recovery, such as family and work responsibilities.
- Gain access to addiction treatments and recovery programs that may not be available in your local areas, such as horse therapy, medication-assisted treatment, and luxury rehab centers.
- Spend time reflecting on your life, and on issues in your life that may initially have contributed to your addiction.
What are the Drawbacks of Traveling for Treatment?
Many who consider traveling for treatment assume that high costs associated with recovering somewhere else may prevent them from doing so. However, many health insurers cover some or all costs associated with rehab and addiction treatment, and may even cover your travel expenses. Financial aid in the form of grants, scholarships, and sliding scale fees can help make treatment affordable for nearly anyone, regardless of where they decide to recover.
Financial factors aside, traveling for addiction treatment may not be ideal for everyone. Here are some drawbacks to traveling for treatment:
- Being separated from loving, supportive friends and family invested in your recovery from addiction.
- Recovering in an unfamiliar place surrounded by unfamiliar faces may worsen feelings of isolation.
- Inability or difficulty with maintaining employment or your home if important responsibilities such as these are neglected on behalf of traveling to receive treatment.
- A difficulty with joining a local aftercare program after returning home.
Following your initial treatment program, many inpatient rehab centers will transition you into an aftercare program that offers continued counseling, behavioral therapy, and support groups. Aftercare is important for helping you stay sober and on track with recovery for the next several weeks and months following treatment. Traveling for treatment could make it difficult for your remote rehab center to transition you into an aftercare program after you’ve returned home.
Should I Travel for Treatment?
Traveling for treatment has pros and cons that should be carefully considered before you make any final decisions surrounding your recovery from addiction. If you’re not entirely sure whether traveling for treatment is ideal for you or your loved one, an experienced addiction representative can answer all your questions and help you find a program.
Here are questions to ask if you’re thinking about traveling for treatment.
- Is the treatment program readily available? If you’re traveling to receive unique, specialized treatment you can’t get anywhere else, find out whether the program is readily available and that you can join before solidifying your traveling plans.
- Will it benefit me to recover away from home and family? If you feel that your home, family, and environment or local community may negatively interfere with your recovery, then yes, it may benefit you to travel for treatment.
- Will my health insurance cover traveling and rehab costs? Talk to your health insurer to find out what’s covered in terms of addiction treatment and related travel, since finances may sometimes interfere with your ability to travel for treatment.
If you’re able to answer yes to all these questions, then traveling for treatment may be ideal for you or your loved one. An experienced addiction specialist can also discuss alternate financial options so you can receive your ideal treatment regardless of income level and other financial barriers.