Addiction is a major public health problem, and many people struggle with alcohol and drug abuse. Fortunately, addiction is a diagnosed medical condition and can be treated by trained professionals.
If you are seeking free and reliable information about rehabilitation options, a drug rehab helpline is the right place to start. Drug rehab hotlines give you space and time to ask questions and receive answers that will help you make informed decisions about your care. Your information is kept completely private and confidential.
If you are near a loved one who is using drugs and is having a seizure, having trouble breathing, is unresponsive, or has overdosed on drugs or alcohol, call 911 immediately.
The first phase of inpatient rehab often includes a period of detoxification (detox). During detox, the patient is slowly weaned off of the substance of abuse, which in many cases may result in the user experiencing withdrawal symptoms.
What Questions Should I Ask a Drug Rehab Hotline?
Before speaking with a helpline’s admissions consultants, you can make a list of things that you’d like to know before entering treatment. These questions can help guide you towards the most appropriate treatment facility.
Queries to ask during an addiction rehab hotline call may include:
- What resources are available in my area?
- What type of therapies are used at the treatment centers?
- What are the differences between inpatient and outpatient services?
- What are the next steps in receiving treatment?
- What happens when I go to rehab?
- Do you offer aftercare planning and/or tools for relapse prevention?
- Are there any support groups or meetings I can attend before or while I am in treatment?
- What credentials should staff members have?
- What accreditation should the treatment facility have?
In order to receive accreditation, a rehab program has to undergo a number of evaluations to ensure that they provide the highest quality of addiction treatment. These treatment programs utilize the excellent practices of addiction treatment and evidence-based therapies. Likewise, every member of the treatment team, which typically consists of a combination of mental health therapists, addiction counselors, doctors, and nurses, should be certified to treat addiction and mental health conditions.
If you are calling a rehab helpline on behalf of a loved one, you may want to ask additional questions such as:
- What should I do if I think my loved one needs rehab?
- What resources are available for family and friends?
- How do I talk to my loved one about entering rehab?
- What should I do in the case of an emergency/overdose?
Should I Call a Drug Helpline?
Calling a drug rehab hotline is a free and easy way to speak with a person who is knowledgeable about addiction recovery options. In addition to helping you get the answers you need to make an informed decision, a rehab hotline can also help you:
- Receive information about drug abuse and/or addiction.
- Approach a loved one about entering treatment.
- Find help for an addiction.
- Find a rehab center.
- Learn more about the different types of therapies used in treatment.
- Receive information about the amenities offered at different treatment centers.
Finding the right recovery center can be a difficult task. Every rehabilitation facility varies in their approach to treating addiction and substance abuse, and it is important that you find the right program to meet your needs.
I’m Too Afraid to Call
It is not unusual to feel hesitation about reaching out for help. It can be difficult to know where to begin. But if you know that you or a loved one needs to stop using drugs and/or alcohol, calling a drug rehab helpline is the first step towards living a healthier life.
The people answering the call are there to help you. Some might take comfort in knowing that they aren’t the only ones placing hotline calls; the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), which operates its own helpline, reported an average 67,949 calls per month in 2017.1 It’s a staggering number and attests to the huge numbers of people in need of more information and possibly treatment referrals.
Information to Prepare Before Calling
When you call a rehab hotline or even a treatment center’s direct line, it can be helpful to have as much information gathered as possible. Whether you’re calling for yourself or a loved one, there are several details you’ll want to provide the admissions consultant who answers the phone. Consider questions including:
- How do I find a trustworthy treatment center?
- What is available in my area?
- What happens during treatment?
If you are speaking to someone connected to a specific facility, questions you might want to ask include:
- Does my insurance cover treatment?
- What types of treatment does the facility provide?
- How long will treatment take?
- Do I need to do detox?
- Where is the facility located?
You’ll want to report what substances are being abused, how severe the substance abuse or addiction has gotten, and how long the substance abuse has been going on. If possible, it will be good to report any known psychiatric conditions, as well as any medical concerns or limitations. This information may help the admissions consultant in guiding you towards appropriate treatment.
Drug and Alcohol Information
The below institutions have drug rehab helplines that offer information and referral services.
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA): SAMHSA has a national helpline and free 24/7 referral and information service for people struggling with substance use, addiction, and/or co-occurring mental health problems. Their helpline number is 1-800-662-HELP (4357).
- Boys Town National Hotline: This crisis and suicide prevention hotline offers services to boys of any age. You can call and speak to a specially trained counselor about anything – topics can even include bullying, work, relationships, and mental health issues. All of the counselors at Boys Town are trained in crisis assistance and suicide prevention and can provide resources for addiction and drug abuse. Their helpline number is 1 (800) 448-3000.
- National Runaway Safe Line: This free, 24/7 helpline provides resources to youth under the age of 21, and they can provide referrals to other resources nationwide. 1 (800) RUNAWAY or 1-800-786-2929
- Alcohol & Drug Help Line: This free and confidential helpline provides information and referrals, in addition to helping people identify what their primary needs are. 206-722-3700
- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: This free, 24-hour helpline specializes in suicide prevention. But counselors can also provide referrals to drug and addiction resources in your area. When you call, you will be routed to your local crisis line based on your area code. The national helpline number is 1-800-273-8255.
- Your local government website: If you are looking for help with drug abuse and addiction, you can start by finding the number of your local health and human services agency. Every state has different programs and policies on addiction treatment. By speaking to someone at the county level, you can get looped into government services that may be able to set you up with insurance and help you find treatment.
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2019). SAMHSA’s National Helpline: Frequently Asked Questions.