Clinically Reviewed by Linda Whiteside, LPCC

Medically Reviewed by: Dr. Ryan Peterson, MD

Rehab For Families: Caring For Loved Ones While You’re In Rehab

Table of Contents

Going to rehab is the first step to recovery for individuals suffering from addiction. However, the journey can be filled with worry for those with loved ones dependent on their care. Knowing how to face this challenging time is essential for the individual in rehab and their family.

Learning how to ensure your loved ones are cared for while you are taking the first step toward recovery and sobriety is important. Get to know various care options, methods to maintain communication, and strategies to offer continued support to your family, even as you focus on your healing.

Drug and Alcohol Addiction Among Parents

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, nearly 7.5 million (5.9M) children aged 17 or younger live with a parent who has a substance abuse disorder. Many of which primarily abuse alcohol and are addicted to it.

These statistics shows the importance of providing services for families in crisis due to parental addiction. Fortunately, there are many resources available to help families through this difficult time. Many of these resources can also be found online and are free or low-cost.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has various services designed to help families struggling with parental addiction. SAMHSA’s website is very useful, from finding local providers to learning about substance abuse treatment options.

The National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (NCADD) is another great resource for families dealing with addiction. NCADD provides a wide range of information about addiction, treatment options, and support services to help families cope.

Causes and Impacts of Addiction Among Families

Addiction can have a long-lasting impact on families. It can lead to financial problems, mental health issues, and strained personal relationships. In addition, the complication of addiction can be particularly challenging for children who witness their parent’s struggle with substance abuse. Here are some of the huge effects of parental addiction:

  • Financial strain: Addiction often leads to an individual spending money on drugs/alcohol instead of providing for their family’s basic needs. Studies show that this can have a devastating impact on families and increase the risk of poverty and homelessness.

  • Mental health issues: The effects of addiction, including depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), are often passed down to children. These issues can manifest in various ways and present additional challenges for youth whose parents have an SUD.

  • Reduced parenting skills: Addiction damage an individual’s ability to parent effectively, leaving their children without the needed guidance and support for healthy development.

What Can Cause Addiction For Parents

The causes of parental addiction are complex. They often include underlying mental health issues and difficulties dealing with past trauma. Understanding the root of the addiction is important to develop a recovery plan that works for both parents and family. Here are some causes and signs to be on the lookout for if you think a loved one is struggling with addiction:

  • Stressful life experiences such as the death of a family member or divorce

  • Social isolation

  • Unexplained changes in behavior like sudden outrage, new friends, and periods of depression

  • Financial instability due to loss of employment or gambling losses

  • Loss of interest in activities previously enjoyed

  • Increase in legal trouble or financial debt

Barriers to Seeking Family Addiction Treatment

When dealing with addiction, families may feel overwhelmed and unsure what to do. They need to recognize that they are not alone in this process. Here are some common roadblocks that people may face when seeking treatment:

  • Fear of stigma or judgment from friends and family

  • Lack of funds or insurance to cover treatment

  • Difficulty finding the right program or support group

  • Fear of leaving their children in unfamiliar care

  • Anxiety about not being present for family events or milestones

By acknowledging these obstacles and understanding that there are resources available to address them, families can begin to take action toward managing addiction. Additionally, being informed about the different treatment options can help families make informed decisions.

Benefits of Family-Based Residential Inpatient Treatment

Family-based residential inpatient treatment is beneficial for those requiring more intensive care. This type of treatment focuses on the needs of the addicted individual and their family. It takes a holistic approach to provide a supportive environment that encourages healing and sobriety.

Here are some of the benefits of family-based residential inpatient treatment:

  • A comprehensive approach to addiction treatment: This treatment includes behavioral therapy and psychotherapy into the individual’s regular schedule. The goal is to help them understand their underlying issues, build healthy coping mechanisms, and understand how to remain abstinent.

  • Access to support systems: Family-based residential inpatient treatment facilities provide a supportive and structured environment for the patient and their family. Families are encouraged to participate in therapy sessions, which is beneficial for everyone involved.

  • Individualized care: This treatment considers the individual’s needs and preferences. The staff works with each person to create an individualized plan considering their situation.

  • A safe and comfortable environment: These treatment centers are designed to be a healing space for the individual and their family. They offer amenities such as spa treatments, yoga classes, and recreational activities that can help promote relaxation and healing.

  • Long-term support: Family-based residential inpatient treatment offers long-term family support for both the addicted individual and their family. The staff works with each person to ensure that they have the tools and resources to remain sober in the future.

  • Access to community resources: It’s facilities can provide access to additional resources and support services. These may include a 12-step program, job training, counseling, and other services to help the patient stay on track after leaving the center.

  • Improved quality of life: This treatment allows individuals and their families to focus on recovery and build a better life. The staff works with each individual to help them develop healthy habits, create positive relationships, and learn how to manage their addiction in the future.

It’s important to note that family-based residential inpatient treatment is not for everyone. It’s a highly specialized form of treatment that should only be used if when other forms of treatment have failed. If you think this treatment may be right for you or your loved one, contact our treatment center for more information.

Types of Treatment for Parents with Addiction

Parents with addiction face unique challenges when it comes to treatment. They need to have access to specialized services that meet their particular needs. Here are some of the types of treatments available:


Detox is the first step in recovery and is often an important part of a comprehensive treatment plan. Detox helps to eliminate all traces of drug abuse or alcohol from the body while minimizing withdrawal symptoms.

Inpatient Treatment

Inpatient treatment provides 24-hour care in an environment focused on providing support and structure for those in recovery. Inpatient treatment is helpful because it gives individuals access to medical and therapeutic care in a safe, secure setting. They can also begin their medication in order to beat their addiction.

Outpatient Treatment

Outpatient treatment is an option for those who cannot attend an in-person program or need more flexible scheduling options. Outpatient programs provide therapy, emotional support, and other services while allowing the individual to remain at home.

Aftercare Programs

Aftercare programs are designed to provide ongoing support for individuals in recovery. They offer 12-step meetings, job training, or counseling services to help individuals stay on track with their recovery goals.

Cognitive Behavior Therapy

Cognitive behavior therapy is a type of talk therapy that helps individuals identify and change negative thought patterns and behaviors via counseling sessions. It can benefit those struggling with addiction by teaching them how to cope with difficult emotions healthily.

Holistic Care

Holistic care focuses on the physical, emotional, and spiritual aspects of healing. It’s an important part of any comprehensive treatment plan as it helps the individual build a strong recovery foundation.

Risks to Children with Addicted Parents

When a parent struggles with addiction, the entire family can be affected. Children of addicted parents are at risk to developing mental health disorders and difficulties in school.

For this reason, it’s important to have access to support services that can help their children cope with the stress associated with parental addiction. Here are some of the risks to children with addicted parents:

  1. Emotional distress: Children who have grown up in homes affected by addiction often experience a range of emotions, such as guilt, shame, and fear. They need access to therapy or support groups to process their feelings in a safe space.

  2. Behavioral problems: Addiction can lead to impulsive behavior, which can be difficult for children to manage and require child development specialists’ help. Access to counseling can help them learn healthy coping mechanisms and better understand their own emotions.

  3. Academic difficulties: Children of addicted parents are more likely to have trouble in school due to the stress and instability of living in a home affected by addiction. They need access to educational resources to help them reach their academic goals.

  4. Addiction: Children of addicted parents are more likely to struggle with addiction themselves due to inherited genetic and environmental factors. These children need access to prevention programs that can provide information about the risks of drug abuse.

Addiction Rehab Where You Can Take Your Children

If you are looking for a sober living environment for families struggling with addiction, we at NuView Treatment Center can help. Our sober living homes are designed to provide a safe and supportive environment for individuals in recovery and their families.

We understand the needs of parents with addiction. Our rehab centers offer a comprehensive program where parents and children can participate. Our Family Program allows parents to be present during their child’s treatment while also focusing on getting the help they need for themselves.

program is customized to meet the individual needs of each parent/child pair. We provide a safe and therapeutic environment for the entire family to heal and grow together, such as individual and family therapy sessions and educational classes on addiction and recovery.

Contact us today at (323) 307 – 7997 or email us at to learn more about our family-focused treatment process and resources. Together, we can help you and your family find lasting sobriety.

Frequently Asked Questions

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Family rehab refers to treatment programs made specifically for individuals and their families struggling with addiction. These programs often involve a combination of therapy, education, recreation, and other activities that help the individual and their family members stay sober in the future.
The length of family rehab depends on various factors, such as the severity of the addiction and individual needs. Generally speaking, treatment may last anywhere from 30 days to six months or more.
Yes, there are several different types of family rehab programs available. These include inpatient and outpatient treatment, family therapy, 12-step programs, and holistic care.
The success rate of family rehab varies depending on the individual’s commitment to recovery. However, research suggests that those who receive comprehensive treatment in a supportive environment are more likely to stay sober long-term.

Shaw, B. A., Agahi, N., & Krause, N. (2011). Are changes in financial strain associated with changes in alcohol use and smoking among older adults?. Journal of studies on alcohol and drugs, 72(6), 917–925.

Zeng, X., & Tan, C. (2021). The Relationship between the Family Functioning of Individuals with Drug Addiction and Relapse Tendency: A Moderated Mediation Model. International journal of environmental research and public health, 18(2), 625.

Lander, L., Howsare, J., & Byrne, M. (2013). The impact of substance use disorders on families and children: from theory to practice. Social work in public health, 28(3-4), 194–205.

Kourgiantakis, T., & Ashcroft, R. (2018). Family-focused practices in addictions: a scoping review protocol. BMJ open, 8(1), e019433.

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Written By: Linda Whiteside

Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor who has been providing mental health services for over 10 years.

Medically reviewed by: Dr. Ryan Peterson

Went to medical school at The George Washington University School of Medicine in Washington, D.C.

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