Residential treatment centers don’t sound like the greatest place to be, The name conjures images of cold, hospital-like settings and stern faced nurses giving pills in paper cups to sad patients just counting the days until they are released.
Don’t worry, the truth is a much cheerier one. Residential treatment centers for teen boys are designed to be a fun, safe environment where troubled youth can go to learn coping mechanisms to deal with the mental and emotional struggles causing them to act out. While the primary focus is therapy and healing, you may be surprised by how fun is being incorporated into the program.
Keeping It Loose
Teenagers need stimulation, so putting them in an environment where they have none isn’t going to help them. It is true that fun might not be the primary goal of the beginning stages of stabilization when some patients with more severe cases arrive to a treatment center. For instance, a teen who is withdrawing from drugs will need to get through that process first.
Once they have settled in it is time to begin incorporating recreational aspects to their treatment.
What Kind of Activities Are Provided?
This will depend largely on what treatment facility you have chosen and the interests of your teen. Most have art and music therapy, both of which have been shown to provide relaxation and coping mechanisms for mental illness and personality disorders. They can also be helpful for dealing with trauma and overwhelming emotions, major triggers for behavioral problems in teens.
In larger facilities, especially long term programs, there are often other areas for fun such as sports, nature hikes, swimming, even some programs with equestrian and animal care treatments to help foster responsibility and empathy.
Of course, not all fun activities are treatment related. Reading, watching movies and spending time with other teens in the program are all encouraged. Free time is offered to allow patients to engage in their own activities they enjoy and to get some time away from the program to decompress.
Are Residential Treatment Centers Successful?
A residential treatment center is a safe facility with trained professionals that can help your teen to overcome serious struggles that can’t be managed in outpatient therapy. They have been shown to provide a solid foundation for learning lifelong coping strategies to manage the difficult feelings and triggers associated with behavior problems.
Find out more at Sundance Canyon Academy.