Congratulations! You have finally made the move for a better life by checking into a rehab center. And as you prepare for the next 30, 60, or 90 days, you might be wondering about the things you need to take to the facility.
As centers have varying policies regarding what can be brought in, here’s a rundown of what you need during treatment.
What Should You Bring to Rehab?
Facilities advise patients to bring the following for their treatment:
- Identification card
- Insurance card
- List of individuals who are involved in your treatment (relatives, healthcare provider/s, 12-step sponsors, etc.) as well as their contact numbers and addresses
- Daily jewelry considered to be a necessity, such as a watch or wedding ring
- Alarm clock without a radio (check with the facility if it provides this one)
- Prescription medication in the original pharmacy bottle (with label intact) and/or new and sealed liquid medication
- List of all medications and their corresponding dosages
- Some cash (small amounts are better for vending machine use, store runs, etc.)
- Debit card, credit card, or checkbook to be used for paying medications
- Notebook or journal
- Stamps or mail (should you wish to send letters)
- Pictures of loved ones
- Any reading material you may want/need
What Clothes Should You Take to Rehab?
Facilities often have strict clothing facilities, so you should be mindful of the garments you bring.
Depending on your location, you should pack weather-appropriate clothing. If needed, prioritize layering apparel such as sweaters, jackets, or cardigans.
As to how much clothes you need to bring, garments that will last you a week should do. After all, facilities provide access to washing machines. Avoid clothes that will require dry cleaning or any other method. Rooms are limited in space as well so it would not be advisable to overpack.
Here’s a list of the garments that you need to take to rehab:
- Tops: shirts, tank tops (permitted as long as you have outerwear)
- Outerwear: coat, jacket, or cardigan
- Shorts (a certain length may be required)
- Dressy clothes for events such as Family Night
- Bathing suit/trunks
- Footwear: comfy shoes for daily wear, slippers for the bathroom, running shoes for physical activity
What Hygiene or Beauty Products Should You Bring?
In most facilities, such products should be alcohol-free. There are centers, however, that allow products with alcohol granted that it is not one of the first 3 ingredients listed on the label.
Make sure to bring a month’s worth of supply of:
- Shampoo and conditioner
- Toothbrush and toothpaste
- Feminine hygiene product
- Shaving cream
- Hairstyling product (pump product only)
Tip: avoid bringing aerosol products to the facility.
Items Restricted in Rehab
Apart from knowing the essential items to bring, you should take note of these restricted products as well:
- Food or drinks
- Electronic cigarettes
- Alcohol and drugs
- Unapproved/opened medications
- Narcotics and prohibited medications
- Revealing clothing or those with profanity and/or references to drugs or alcohol
- Weapons such as guns, knives, or scissors
- Electronics such as TVs or gaming consoles
- Video games or DVDs
- Games and playing cards
- Pornographic materials
- Candles or incense
- Cleaning supplies with ammonia or bleach
- Alcohol-containing products
- Nail polish or polish remover
Things That You May Take to Rehab – Depending on Facility Policy
As mentioned, treatment centers have different policies. So if you’re thinking of bringing any of the items below, you should contact the facility to confirm if it allows the following:
- Vitamins and over-the-counter medications granted that each bottle is new and unopened
- Gum, which has to be sealed and unopened
- Cigarettes, with a limit to the number of cartons to bring
- Razor (disposable or electric)
- Nail clippers
- Music device without a speaker or internet access, such as an MP3 or CD player
- Camera with no internet access
- Cellphone and laptop, which could only be accessed during certain times
- ‘Home’ items such as beddings or pillows
What to Do if You Bring Something Prohibited
In case you brought something that is not allowed on the premises, you don’t have to worry as it will send the item/s back to the person who brought you to the facility.
In some cases, the center may hold your item for 24 hours or until someone picks it up. You may want to have it shipped if you come from somewhere far.
Depending on the policy, the center may secure the item up until you are discharged from treatment.
What to Expect at the Rehab Facility
Now that you know what to bring in rehab, it might help to know what goes on in rehab daily:
While a good night’s sleep is given to participants, you can expect to wake up early at rehab. As an early riser, you can participate in morning yoga or meditation sessions. These can help you adopt the healthy habits that you need to continue after discharge.
After a healthy breakfast, you may proceed with a group session that focuses on addiction, treatment, and recovery, among many other things.
After lunch, you will be given more intensive treatments such as:
3. Individual Behavior Therapy
The commonly-used method for this is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy or CBT. This focuses on the behavioral changes brought about by certain triggers. As the counselor assists you in identifying these mechanisms, he/she can help you build healthier responses to such triggers.
CBT also provides a safe space for you to verbalize your fears and concerns – so that your counselor can provide methods that will help allay your anxiety.
4. Group Therapy
The goal of this is to create camaraderie amongst participants who have experienced the same problems. As members tell their own stories, they get to develop a sense of fellowship that paves the way for emotional healing.
5. Special Sessions
Depending on your issue, you may be asked to attend grief counseling, stress management, or anger management sessions.
6. Family Therapy
As substance abuse always results (or stems from) codependency, family therapy may help address the issues that lead to addiction and its consequences.
Now that you know what to bring, it’s time to get packing! Good luck with your treatment!
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