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  • Take the First Step in Las Vegas

    Desert Hope is a beautiful oasis with modern charm located in Las Vegas, Nevada. We provide all levels of care from detox, in-patient, outpatient and sober living.

    Visit Desert Hope Treatment Center Visit Desert Hope Treatment Center
  • A New Life Awaits

    Start your recovery at our spa-like facility in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area. Holistic therapies, chef-prepared meals, and LGBTQ+ support are among the many features of our premier drug and alcohol treatment program.

    Visit Greenhouse Treatment Center Visit Greenhouse Treatment Center
  • The Best Place to Recover in Orange County

    Laguna Treatment Hospital is located in Orange County, CA. The first Chemical Dependency Recovery Hospital in the OC, we offer safe medical detox, mental health support, and wellness programs.

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  • Start Recovery at Our Southern Resort

    Take a step back from your life and get the help you need at our premier drug and alcohol addiction center. Nestled in the countryside 1.5 hours from Memphis, Oxford gives you the support you need in a calm and beautiful setting.

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  • Recovery Forecast includes Tropical Weather

    Your recovery can start at either of two premier drug and alcohol treatment facilities in the Greater Miami area - Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood, FL. Our specialties include treatment for veterans and first responders.

    Visit Recovery First Treatment Center Visit Recovery First Treatment Center
  • Sunny Florida Welcomes You

    Retreat to the sunny climate of Tampa, Florida for a stay at the standard of treatment facilities in Tampa, FL. We offer customized care plans to help you on your recovery journey.

    Visit River Oaks Treatment Center Visit River Oaks Treatment Center
  • Helping New Englanders Find Recovery for Over 30 years

    Escape to the countryside to recovery in New Jersey’s premier drug rehab & treatment center. Located only an hour from New York City.

    Visit Sunrise House Treatment Center Visit Sunrise House Treatment Center

Why Going Away for Drug Rehab Works

Attending a treatment program or a drug rehab center located down the street from where you once used drugs is probably not an effective way to achieve sobriety. There are many convincing arguments to attend treatment in another city or state, not the least of which is the fact that if you attend treatment locally, you’ll likely be airing your “dirty laundry” to other locals – people you know and encounter on a regular basis. The following are a number of other reasons why going away for drug rehab can be much more effective than staying near home.

Fewer Triggers and Cues

If you go to a rehab far from where you live, you’ll experience fewer triggers and cues to use. Because the brain forms contextual associations during active drug use, those associations can come back to haunt an addict when they see a person they used with, a building or street where they spent a great deal of time or other local triggers that cause the addict to feel a severe compulsion to get high.

Fewer Negative Influences

At a rehab just around the block from your old “using grounds,” there’s likely to be a number of negative influences around. This can include family members who would be better left out of the early stages of recovery, people you once used with, of perhaps counselors or treatment staff that you’ve burned in the past. All of these negative influences can be mitigated by going to rehab in another city.

Not so Easy to Leave and Get High

If you live in Maine and you attend treatment in California, it won’t be so easy for you to leave treatment and go get high if you feel like giving up on your recovery program. This can be a powerful deterrent for people who just need a little extra “motivation” not to use – especially during the initial phases of Acute and Post-Acute Withdrawal.

The Warehouse Effect

One of the most successful elements of a long-term rehab program is the Warehouse Effect. This refers to the idea that it takes around 28 days for a person to “break a habit,” and in general the idea works. By “warehousing” addicts in a safe place that provides therapies and education, people in recovery can benefit from the warehouse effect while remaining productive and learning new skills and resources to help in the effort to stay clean for life.

New Environment, New Perspective

Sometimes, going to a new place can entirely change your perspective. From meeting new people with different ideals and experiences to the inspiration of a strange new landscape, addicts sometimes need some beauty; some change or just some new way of thinking, and this is often found by traveling to somewhere you’ve never been before. Addiction is a highly repetitive condition that leaves people feeling like they’re in a rut. The best way out of that rut is to travel a new road – metaphorically and literally.

The Weather

If you could make a choice right now between attending rehab in Northern Michigan or anywhere in Southern California during the month of February, which would you choose? Most people seeking recovery do actually have this choice because there are no laws or regulations that require a person to attend a rehab locally. In fact, you may find that a rehab in a warm-weather climate will achieve a better success rate for you personally, especially if you are someone who suffers from seasonal affective disorder.

What you May Not Know

Live in Montana but want to go to rehab in Florida? You can. All you have to do is call the rehab of your choice and in most cases the staff will work to get you into the treatment center that you feel will work best for you. Some rehabs will even help you with transportation or court issues involved with getting you into treatment. And because the average inpatient program costs about the same nationwide, there’s really no financial reason to stay near your old stomping grounds when going through a substance abuse program.

When it comes to breaking free from the chains of addiction or alcoholism, don’t settle for what’s local or easy: determine what the best possible treatment plan is for you and take action on that plan before it’s too late.

About The Contributor
The editorial staff of Recovery First is comprised of addiction content experts from American Addiction Centers. Our editors and medical reviewers have over a decade of cumulative experience in medical content editing and have reviewed thousands... Read More