So you’ve decided with your teen’s doctor and your teen’s therapist or counselor that perhaps some time at a residential treatment center is the best thing right now. You and your teen may feel anxious about what to expect in this new place. If you are wondering to yourself, “What should my teen expect at residential treatment centers,” you are not alone. However, once you and your teen learn more about what happens in these teen facilities, things will not seem so strange and new.
A residential treatment center is a safe, secure and supportive place where teens can deal with mental or behavioral health issues with trained and licensed professionals. The schedule is very set in a residential treatment center so your teen will always know what they should be doing, when meals are, what chores are expected and more. Some teens might feel like the tight schedule is restrictive, but it actually helps them feel more at ease because they always know what to expect. This is especially comforting for teens who have come from chaotic homes or don’t do well in spontaneous situation.
Another thing to expect in a residential home is the restriction on electronic devices. Most facilities don’t let teens bring in cell phones, music players, video games and other entertainment systems. Other items that may cause distractions are also not allowed.
Teens will most likely be asked to do a range of activities, from attend school to doing chores in their living space. Academics is a big part of a residential treatment center and it’s not uncommon for troubled teens at these facilities to get caught up to their grade level or even exceed it.
Counseling is another part of being in a residential treatment center, and teens can expect private and group therapy sessions frequently. Behavioral therapy from trained counselors will help them get to the root of their issues and teach them better coping skills and ways to deal with their current problems. Throughout the day, the residential treatment center’s staff members work together to provide structure so that every teen’s positive behavior is reinforced.
Finally, your teen will have plenty of time for recreation and activities. Most residential treatment centers have fun activities for teens to do that build self=esteem, boost relationships with each other and teach them new hobbies and skills. Examples might include horseback riding, sports, outdoor activities and more.
It doesn’t matter if you don’t know much about what to expect at a residential treatment center–you and your teen can talk to the admissions counselor and get an in-depth explanation of what the day-to-day life will be like for your teenager. In time, you will both be amazed at the positive long-term effect these facilities have on your troubled teen.