Finding the best adolescent treatment center for your teen entails finding the care that is most appropriate for their needs. Treating teens requires a different approach than adults because of their cognitive development, the significance of peer influence, and the differences in their values and beliefs. Teens are in the midst of their individuation process, and with that comes a natural rebellion and resistance to change and receptivity to outside influence. The best adolescent treatment center should be able to meet each client where they are.
The best adolescent treatment center will employ a team approach to problem solving and include the family, previous treatment professionals, educators, consultants, and any other specialist that may prove helpful to an adolescent’s recovery. To ensure success, the facility will create individualized plans for each client with regard to their specific needs; this will encourage emotional growth, provide academic support, and foster healthy family relationships to cultivate reparative functionality.
When a family is seeking treatment for their teen, they should look for a place that is dedicated and committed to the ultimate health and welfare of their family.
Key questions parents should ask
1. Is the facility licensed by the state?
Find out what aspects of the program the license covers.
2. Does the facility provide an academic curriculum?
Is it available to all clients? Will academic credits transfer?
3. Does the facility have a clinical director? What are his/her credentials?
4. What are the credentials of the staff, especially the counselors and therapists, who will be working with my child?
How experienced is the staff? How long has the center been providing adolescent treatment? What is the staff turnover?
5. Does the facility conduct background checks on the employees?
If the facility doesn’t, consider that a red flag.
6. What are the criteria for admission? Do they conduct pre-admission assessments? Are they in person, by phone, or over the Internet? Who conducts them?
7. Will they provide an individualized program with a detailed explanation of the therapies, interventions, and supports that will address my child’s needs? When is this done? How often will my child be reassessed?
Confirm the frequency of therapy sessions, whether they are group, individual or both. Confirm that promised level of care is being received after admission to the program.
8. How does the facility handle medical issues like illness or injury? Is there a nurse or doctor on staff? Will you contact me? Will I be notified or consulted if there’s a change in treatment or medication?
Ask for copies of medical procedures followed in the event of a medical emergency.
9. How do you define success? What is your success rate? How is it measured?
Some programs make specific success claims in their advertising materials. To date, there is no systematic, independently collected descriptive or outcome data on these programs.
10. How do you discipline program participants?
11. Can I contact/speak with my child when I want? Can my child contact me when he/she wants?
Each program differs. Find out what is allowed prior to admission.
12. What are the costs? What is covered? What is your refund policy if the program doesn’t work out?
13. Do you have relationships with companies and individuals that provide educational and referral services?
The best adolescent treatment facility will want you to succeed. They will want you to thrive. They will want you to get well. They will nurture you so you can learn to feel good in your skin and they will provide you with the sense that you are part of a family. Ultimately, a facility will promote a process of healing that encourages and sustains a healthy lifestyle.
At Visions, we strive to provide the best treatment experience for every family. Our goal is to wholeheartedly support the adolescent treatment industry through leadership while we work shoulder to shoulder in a community and world that continues to evolve.