What is a residential treatment center? – A residential treatment center is a facility that houses and manages troubled teens full time. Such programs have trained counselors and therapists in-house that help each resident learn how to overcome his issues and become better prepared to handle the challenges of everyday life.
Who is accepted in residential treatment centers? – Teens with behavioral problems such as defiance, anger, depression, substance abuse and mental disorders are all examples of issues that residential facilities are prepared to treat.
What happens there? – Although the actual curriculum is different depending on the program, most offer a variety of therapies, such as family, individual and group as well as recreational and life skills. Selecting a facility with multiple options offers troubled teens the greatest chance of individualizing a plan of care that is specific to their needs and learning style.
How many residents are accepted? Again, this depends on the actual facility, but most residential treatment centers base much of their success on smaller groups and a more family-like environment. Smaller resident numbers results in more one-on-one attention from the counselors and therapists.
How long is the program? The average length of stay is generally between 6 and 9 months, depending on the severity of the teen and his challenges. Because each resident is going to have a different experience, most facilities focus more on reaching goals and less on actual timeframes. That being said, parents should select a facility that is also sensitive to their financial needs.
Is there funding available to help with the cost? You can check with your state, but most don’t offer grants for voluntary teen help programs. There are private education loans available, however, and the financial counselor at the facility you have selected can help you get started in the application process.
Is accredited schooling offered? Most residential treatment centers offer academics in their curriculum; however, not every state requires actual accreditation. Check the laws for the state you are considering as well as the facility itself to make sure that the work your son does will be able to transfer when he is through.
How much contact do I get with my teen? Each program is going to treat parental contact a little differently, but most offer less at the beginning while their son settles in and develops relationships with the staff. More contact is available as residents work their way through the program.
How do you handle defiance or refusal to comply? Defiance is generally handled with natural and logical consequences. In a limited environment, teens are better able to learn how to gauge the results of their actions and gain control of their behavior.
Can I speak personally to parents of previous students? Satisfied families are the best endorsement any facility can get. During your initial consultation with a prospective program, ask for a list of families who are willing to talk about their experience.
Sundance Canyon Academy is a residential treatment facility located in northern Utah. We are dedicated to helping troubled teens turn their lives around through a unique relationship based therapy program. Please contact us 866-678-2425 for a consultation or to discuss the ways that we can help your son discover his full potential in a healthy and holistic environment.