The Role of Family Support During Residential Treatment

Family support roles in residential treatment can be crucial for a patient’s well-being. Seeking out residential treatment is an extremely brave step, but it can also be isolating and scary. Residential treatment provides patients with 24/7 care in a comfortable home-like setting that allows them to recover and build skills in an environment free from the distractions and stresses of everyday life.

Family members can provide assistance to a patient during this time by offering financial, personal, psychological, and/or emotional support. In this post we will explore various ways a family member can support a loved one during residential treatment.

What Is Family Support? And Why Is It Important?

In residential treatment a patient can focus solely on their recovery while isolated from the stresses of everyday life. We all know that the world outside those borders doesn’t come to a standstill. Family members can help with different elements of a patient’s life to support a solid foundation when they’ve completed treatment.

Financial Support

Residential treatment cost, health insurance, and income can all be big questions and concerns when entering residential treatment. Family members, if they have the means, can help to ease those concerns. Knowing financial concerns are taken care of outside of treatment helps a patient to focus on their recovery, and to find a stable landing after treatment.

Psychological Support

Families can participate in family psychoeducation to better understand their loved one. Psychoeducation helps families work together and achieve results for their loved ones. Understanding a loved one’s condition is crucial for the continued recovery of a patient. Families participating in psychoeducation can help prevent loved ones from relapsing. Family therapy can also be extremely useful. Family therapy, a form of talk therapy, allows families to repair relationships with one another and better communicate.

Personal Support

Providing personal support to a loved one in residential treatment can give them a sense of security and peace. This could include doing research on the program, communicating with their health insurance company, or caring for pets. Managing stressful paperwork, red tape, and other logistics for a loved one can ease their minds and help them get the most out of their residential treatment.

Emotional Support

Emotional support is the most important support a family member can give to a loved one in residential mental health treatment. Being there for a loved one emotionally allows an individual to accept their condition and refrain from feeling shame. Material and financial needs may not be met by every family, but having emotional support is the most crucial element for a loved one entering residential treatment.

These are a few ways that families can provide residential treatment support. Consult with the program, or your healthcare provider, to understand what the best way is to support a loved one.

How Residential Treatment Facilities Engage Family Support

Residential programs assist patients’ recovery by encouraging family visits, participation in support groups or family therapy and by making educational materials readily available to family members. Supporting your family member in residential treatment is clearly important, but what is the best way to go about it? Whichever residential mental health treatment program your loved one is attending will be able to give you specific instructions on the best way to show support. Let’s look at some options to provide residential treatment support.

Family Therapy

Many residential treatment facilities offer family therapy to help families resolve interpersonal conflicts that may exacerbate a patient’s condition. Family therapy can help families build a foundation of support for their loved one in treatment.

Family Psychoeducation

Family psychoeducation helps educate family members on their loved one’s condition and provides them with tools to support their loved one post-treatment and help prevent relapses.

Mental illness is often misunderstood and stigmatized. Family members may not fully understand the intricacies of a loved one’s condition. Residential treatment facilities can engage family support by educating them and providing resources to help them better understand their loved one’s condition. Fear is born out of a lack of knowledge, with the proper education that fear can be greatly diminished.

Healing is a lifelong process and doesn’t end when a patient leaves treatment. Family members can play a crucial role in the lifelong journey of recovery.

How Families Can Provide Support During Residential Treatment

There are many ways to show support and assist in a loved one’s recovery. Sometimes these can be very simple. Taking care of a beloved pet, watering plants, or maintaining an apartment while a patient is in residential mental health treatment are all meaningful ways to provide support. Communicate with your loved one and their team to understand the best way for you to help.

How to Maintain a Positive and Constructive Relationship

When a loved one enters residential mental health treatment it can be difficult for the entire family unit. Working with your loved one’s team, researching their condition, and attending support groups for family members are all great ways to maintain your relationship with your loved one while they undergo treatment.

Self-Care and Avoiding Burnout

Taking on care of a family member who is struggling with their mental health can be detrimental to your own mental health. Consider maintaining talk therapy for yourself and be sure to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Developing healthy coping mechanisms and self-care routines can be crucial so that you can in turn care for your loved one.

Healthy self-care routines can include:
● Making sure you get enough rest
● Exercising
● Journaling
● Avoiding alcohol/drugs and other unhealthy coping mechanisms
● Making time for hobbies and productive social time

Walking the Path of Recovery, Together

Supporting your family member through residential mental health treatment can mean the world to a patient. Actively participating in their treatment process can help you better understand your loved one and provide you with tools to assist in their continued recovery. Family support roles in residential treatment can help patients immensely. Reach out today to learn more about how you can best help your loved one in their recovery.