The insurance situation in the United States has become rather bad over the last twenty years. More often than ever, insurance companies are charging more and covering less. If you have any “pre-existing” condition, most insurance companies will not pay for related conditions. For addicts, this is particularly bad since many companies do not provide enough coverage for addicts to receive the proper duration and quality of care that will be needed to detox them and keep them sober. Consider the different stages of addiction to better understand.

Getting addiction treatment free of charge will, in most cases, be necessary in order to provide the full breadth and treatment options for individuals. If full insurance coverage is available, this may not be needed. All addictions are serious, even if they do not seem so. The condition is not defined by the amounts of drugs and alcohol used or the frequency. Instead, it is a state of mind that leads to more consistent use of substances and then to abuse and addiction.

Once an addict has reached the point of physical dependency and high dose abuse, treatment will be required or the addict will need to keep abusing the substance to even have a normal day. This is true for all addictions no matter how addictive the drug or drugs are supposed to be. At this time, it takes a person recognizing the state of their condition and they will voluntarily go into treatment. The other option is to have loved ones intervene to have you committed. Another scenario is to be arrested and then committed by a judge.

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Once in treatment, there are stages of recovery. The first is detox, during which the patient is withdrawn from the drugs or alcohol slowly in a safe environment. This also allows the addict to have a more comfortable transition to sobriety. In some cases, such as alcoholism, this sub-acute care is needed to keep a patient from dying. Once the patient is fully detoxed, they are usually sent to another group in the treatment center to begin group therapy and psychotherapy. Medications may be prescribed if there is a dual diagnosis.

After detox, underlying mental issues may still be present since the addiction that was covering it up is not available anymore. Instead, medications and regular counselling will help bring about a more normal mental state. Medications are also used to help addicts continue sub-acute care if it is needed for a longer period of time. Opioid addiction is a good example. In this case, slow withdrawal with methadone or suboxone will be prescribed.

How does this all relate to the cost of treatment? Ask a treatment center what their fees are and discover how alarmingly high they are. Some of the finer centers can cost up to $3,000 per day. If that isn’t in the budget and insurance will not sufficiently cover the costs, you will need to find free addiction treatment options quickly. This is something a social worker or addiction counselor will be able to help with. Seek options for free care.