Why it’s best to voluntarily go to an addiction treatment center

Why Voluntary Addiction Treatment is Best


Whether you’ve watched a loved one struggle with the debilitating disease, or even been afflicted yourself, addiction can be a very touchy subject. Also, when the topic of rehabilitation centers or other treatment options are brought up, there is a lot of conflicting information. Some people think people suffering from addiction should be forced to seek treatment; others believe treatment should be voluntarily sought. It has long been thought that coerced treatment is more effective than voluntary treatment, however, new studies are showing that the opposite is true. Medically speaking, while treatment does not have to voluntary to be effective, patients who check in to a rehab center generally have a better chance of kicking the habit permanently.


Patients who are either coerced by family and friends or court mandated as the result of legal trouble can definitely still be successfully treated for addiction. However, people that voluntarily check themselves into addiction treatment centers are often at the point where they are ready to leave behind their addiction once and for all. This means that life after rehab has a better chance of being entirely free from old unhealthy and damaging habits. People who seek treatment voluntarily usually have come to the realization that their addiction is ruining their life. This can be in the form of strained relationships with loved ones, possibly having lost their job or having gotten into legal trouble, not to mention the toll it has most likely taken on their overall health. Thus, when they graduate the rehabilitation program, they are more likely not to return to their old ways.


As mentioned previously, former studies have shown that mandated rehabilitation is often just as effective as voluntary rehabilitation. However those studies often only measure data while patients remain under the care of health professionals. This is why data has traditionally shown no difference in one or the other being more effective. However, when long term and maintained sobriety come into play, it has now been found that patients who were forced to seek treatment often went back to their drug of choice as soon as they left the treatment center.


Furthermore, patients that voluntarily sought treatment have been found to have a higher

chance of long term success in remaining abstinent from their substance of choice. One traditional argument was that anyway of getting people who suffer from addiction of the streets and anyway of reducing crime and violence that often comes alongside addiction was a positive thing. These new studies have also shown that compulsory treatment has had a negative effect. Patients often continue to be arrested and incarcerated after treatment, if they did not voluntarily seek it.


Many researchers are now recommending that compulsory treatment centers be replaced either with voluntary treatment centers or other options altogether. Many human rights activists have argued that having mandated treatment is a violation of basic human rights. In conclusion, voluntary addiction treatment seems to be the best option for long term success in sobriety.