7 Reasons Out-Of-State Drug Rehab Makes Sense

The decision to enter a drug rehab program is difficult enough on its own. But deciding which facility to enter brings about its own unique questions and challenges. While the first instinct might be to attend a rehab program close to home, in some cases, out-of-state drug rehab is the best way to treat drug addiction.

While it’s true that there may be excellent addiction treatment facilities right in your neighborhood, it’s important to explore all your options. Out-of-state drug rehab can offer advantages over treatment in your hometown, even if initially it may sound inconvenient and illogical.

Man at the airport with suitcase headed to out of state rehab

Before committing to a drug rehab program, do your due diligence to make sure you choose the facility that will best meet your needs and will work with your insurance. Here are nine reasons out-of-state drug rehab might make sense for you or your loved one.

#1: Proximity Isn’t Everything

Just because a substance abuse treatment facility is located around the corner doesn’t mean it’s the best one for you. Let’s say you’re struggling with opioid addiction, but your local rehab facility mainly treats alcohol addiction. Maybe your particular situation calls for outpatient treatment, but your local facility doesn’t offer this type of care.

Or perhaps you have a dual diagnosis such as depression or another mental health issue along with substance abuse problems. You’ll need a facility where the staff is highly trained in treating both disorders and navigating the complexities of a dual diagnosis.

Other possible reasons to look out of state could be related to personal preference. For instance, maybe you prefer a facility that caters to a certain demographic, religion, gender or age group. By looking out of state, you might find a great match for your needs, increasing the likelihood of you finding the proper care and sticking with your treatment.

#2: You Might Stay Longer

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), people progress through drug addiction at various rates, meaning there is no one set length of time required for treatment. However, research has shown that good outcomes are contingent on adequate treatment length. 

The NIDA adds that for residential or outpatient treatment, participation for less than 90 days is of limited effectiveness, and it’s recommended that treatment last significantly longer in order to achieve positive outcomes.

A young man talks with his therapist after deciding to stay in addiction treatment out-of-state longer.

If your drug-rehab facility is close to home, it’ll be more tempting to bail when the going gets tough. Without the luxury of easily heading home, you may be more likely to stay longer and therefore gain greater benefits from treatment.

#3: A Change of Environment Might Be Needed

In some cases, the literal environment could play a role in a person’s substance abuse or mental health issues. If you live in an area that’s prone to snow, rain or dreary weather, for example, it’s possible that the climate contributes to your overall mood and inclination to seek out substances for comfort. 

Mother arguing with daughter - out of state rehab may be better for a toxic living situation.

According to May 2019 findings in the journal Hepatology, colder weather and fewer daylight hours increase the frequency of alcohol consumption and alcoholic cirrhosis. In such cases, seeking out-of-state drug rehab might be the best option, provided their drug addiction treatment methods align with your needs. You might find that the change of scenery in a warm, sunny climate may aid your addiction recovery efforts. 

On the other hand, a mountain retreat surrounded by nature might be beneficial if you live in an area with scorching heat. Either way, the change of scenery could prove to be good for your recovery efforts (and your soul).

#4: Out-Of-State Drug Rehab Distances You From Distractions

Without realizing it, your friends and family may be contributing to your substance abuse problem. For example, maybe they routinely cover for you if you’re hungover and late to work, enabling your addiction. Or perhaps they use alcohol at home, making it more difficult for you to stick with a drug rehab program.

With out-of-state addiction treatment, there will be nobody there to enable your addiction, leaving you to focus on your treatment plan. You’ll be able to put a stop to many of the potential triggers that have kept you on a path of substance abuse.

Man sitting on the floor after relapsing with his friends the night before, who are bad influences on his recovery.

You’ll also eliminate social scenarios in which you may feel tempted to drink alcohol or use drugs, such as happy hours with co-workers or parties with friends. It’s a lot more difficult to get to the local watering hole if you’re hundreds or thousands of miles away!

#5: You’ll Reduce the Chances of Relapse

Along the same lines as point #4, attending out-of-state drug rehab also decreases your chances of relapse. You’ll be putting physical distance between you and your triggers, allowing you to gain the benefits of treatment without getting easily pulled back into your old way of living.

It might feel isolating at first to enter addiction treatment out of state. However, you may quickly find comfort in surrounding yourself with people who can relate to your challenges and help you on the road to recovery.

A woman stands by the beach celebrating with her arms in the air, feeling good after getting sober and staying away from old triggers

Your treatment becomes even more empowering when you combine it with other therapy modalities, such as mindfulness practices and massage therapy. In time, you may actually start to crave the high you get simply by being your best self and avoiding substances. The longer you build these habits at out-of-state rehab, the more likely you are to avoid relapse if and when you are ready to return home.

#6: The Wait Time May Be Shorter

Even if you find a great treatment center close to home, they may have a waiting list. Looking into out-of-state drug rehab programs could give you the ability to enter treatment sooner and start getting the help you need right away.

The longer you wait to enter treatment, the longer your addiction is going to disrupt your life and negatively impact your health. It’s also possible that you’ll change your mind about treatment if you have to wait a while to get started.

Bottom line: The sooner the better when it comes to seeking help for substance abuse problems. If that means going out of state, that might be the best way to treat drug addiction for your situation.

#7: Out-of-State Rehab May Feel More Private

The choice to seek drug addiction treatment is something to celebrate, to be sure, but you might not be quite ready to share your news with the world. Telling people you’re going away on a “vacation” might feel easier initially, and out-of-state drug rehab can help you maintain your anonymity. 

Privacy can also be helpful if you’re concerned about losing your job or having your reputation damaged over a substance abuse problem. Going out of state for addiction treatment helps to eliminate that worry and lets you focus on your recovery.

At some point, you may wish to involve your loved ones in your treatment plans, depending on your particular situation. This is a personal choice you can make with your therapists’ help when the time is right.

Young people are sitting in circle, holding hands and smiling at an out-of-state rehab center for addiction.

Is Out-Of-State Drug Rehab for You?

There can be many benefits to out-of-state addiction treatment, and for many people, attending rehab away from home is the best choice for their recovery. Although it may be difficult to leave your family, friends, job and life as you know it, remember that it’s a temporary change with long-term, potentially life-saving results.

To learn more about out-of-state drug rehab for yourself or a loved one, feel free to contact us 24/7.

We're here to help.

At Twelve South Recovery, we accept most health insurance.

Get you or your loved one help for addiction or mental health issues today.

CALL 24/7 866-839-6876


Bluecross Blueshield Insurance Icon Cigna Insurance Icon HealthNet Insurance Icon HPHC Insurance Logo Beachstreet Insurance Logo Magellan Health Insurance Logo Multiplan Network Insurance Logo Prime Health Services Insurance Logo Tufts Health Plan Insurance Logo Aetna Insurance Logo Amerihealth Insurance Logo Anthem Insurance Logo Beacon Insurance Logo

National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers

Legitscript Certified Treatment Center California Department of Healthcare Services Logo Accredited By The Joint Comission - Gold Seal Better Business Bureau - Accredited Business