What Is the Key to Long-Term Recovery?

Findings from the 2016 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) conducted by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) revealed that nearly 35 million adults received mental health treatment in 2015. However, results from the 2020 NSDUH revealed that more than 41.4 million adults received mental health treatment in 2019. 

These statistics show that the need for mental and behavioral health treatment continues to rise annually. Because of this, it is instrumental to address what factors play a role in sustaining long-term recovery from mental illness and substance use disorders (SUDs).

Prevalence of Mental Health and Substance Use Disorders 

Although mental health and substance abuse treatment often overlap in research, it is essential to address the prevalence of mental and behavioral health disorders separately to better recognize the increasing need for available treatment options. According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), in 2020, nearly one in five adults lived with a mental health disorder. 

However, the American Journal of Public Health states, “Globally, more than 70% of people with mental illness receive no treatment from health care staff.” There is no question that mental health disorders are a significant public health issue. What may be even more concerning, though, is the lack of treatment entry and engagement for individuals that need healing.

Additionally, in 2015, SAMHSA estimated that about 21.7 million individuals ages 12 and older living with SUD required treatment. Unfortunately, only 2.3 million actually participated in treatment. In other words, nearly 19.3 million people who required treatment for SUD did not receive treatment at a facility. This matters because millions of individuals do not have access to treatment resources and knowledge necessary to ensure lasting sobriety and recovery.

Securing Long-Term Recovery Begins With Participating in Treatment

Individuals who are struggling with mental health disorders or SUD may wonder what it takes to secure long-term recovery. However, most people ask this question from the comfort of their own homes. It is essential to understand that little strides can be made toward securing long-term recovery without first participating in a treatment program. 

Here are just a few examples of why treatment is essential for ensuring long-term recovery from mental illness and SUD:

  • Treatment offers both physical and psychological support throughout an individual’s entire sobriety journey, beginning with detox and extending well into long-term recovery.
  • Treatment connects individuals with therapists who can help clients discover and overcome the underlying causes of their substance use and mental health symptoms. 
  • Treatment helps individuals discover the connections that lie between their thoughts, emotions, and behavior. A number of different therapies are often utilized in treatment to ensure that all aspects of a client’s health are focused on throughout the healing process. 
  • Treatment connects individuals with other peers who are actively pursuing recovery. Group therapy can offer new perspectives and supply essential social support necessary throughout the long-term recovery process.
  • Treatment helps clients establish healthier coping mechanisms for managing triggers and cravings. In other words, treatment supplies clients with relapse prevention techniques that can be utilized throughout their lifelong sobriety journey. 

The Key to Long-Term Recovery Is Individualized Treatment

While engaging with treatment is essential, participating in treatment in an initial treatment program is not enough to establish long-term recovery. Rather, the key to achieving long-lasting recovery is utilizing an individualized treatment program. This type of treatment allows a therapist to tailor treatment services as needed throughout a client’s lifelong recovery journey.

What Is Individualized Treatment?

Individualized treatment is a person-centered approach to treating mental and behavioral health disorders. Rather than providing treatment solely based on a client’s diagnosis and symptoms, individualized treatment is provided with the client’s unique needs and recovery goals in mind. 

Some treatment facilities do not utilize individualized treatment. They may rely solely on one type of treatment program, such as a 12-Step program, to help their clients establish their sobriety. However, facilities that utilize individualized treatment recognize that no individuals are the same nor require the same exact treatment plan. Likewise, these facilities honor a client’s complex nature and help them to heal all areas of their health and well-being, including:

  • Physical health
  • Mental health
  • Emotional health
  • Spiritual health
  • Social well-being 

What Is Involved in an Individualized Treatment Plan?

With effective individualized treatment, a therapist will regularly assess and monitor a client’s symptoms and behavioral change. Some factors that therapists consider when crafting a client’s individualized treatment plan include:

  • Unique needs and recovery goals
  • Preferences for therapeutic interventions
  • Potential use of medication-assisted treatment (MAT)
  • Demographics, including age, gender, and ethnicity
  • Type of mental health or SUD a client is seeking recovery from
  • Presence of a co-occurring mental health disorder or SUD
  • Flexibility of a client’s treatment schedule (considering personal responsibilities)

Individualized Treatment Adapts Throughout Lifelong Recovery

An incredible benefit of individualized treatment is that treatment plans can adapt to fit a client’s ever-changing needs and goals. Remember, recovery is a lifelong journey. Although completing an initial treatment program is worth celebrating, participating in long-term aftercare is essential for sustaining sobriety. An individualized treatment plan can encourage clients to prioritize their participation in long-term aftercare and, ultimately, their recovery even years into sobriety. 

Learning how to transition from one step of treatment to another, such as rehab to aftercare, throughout recovery can be overwhelming. However, these transitions are essential for learning how to navigate sobriety with greater accountability and independence. Facilities that utilize individualized treatment can help you to manage problematic variables that may surface throughout these shifts. Ultimately, individualized treatment will help you secure long-term recovery.

The key to long-term recovery is utilizing individualized treatment throughout your lifelong recovery journey. 12 South Recovery recognizes this, which is why we offer individualized treatment for all of our clients. We believe in the power of client-centered care when providing treatment for mental illness and addiction. We offer a number of treatment programs, including partial hospitalization (PHP), intensive outpatient (IOP), and general outpatient treatment. We structure each of these programs with the needs of a client in mind, allowing for gradual acclimation back to society. If you or a loved one has struggled with sustaining long-term recovery, we can help. Call us at 866-839-6876 to learn more about how we can support you.

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