Unfamiliar with how mental health services work, many people are confused about the differences between things like therapy centres, treatment clinics, rehabilitation programs, intervention programs, and more. Whether you're thinking about seeing a therapist improve your overall mental health or you (or a loved one) are struggling with a substance abuse problem, it's a good idea to understand the mental health services out there in order to get the best help available. If you or someone you care about is struggling with mental health issues and is open to getting professional help, read on to learn more about the differences between rehab programs and mental health retreats.

What is a rehab program?

A mental health treatment centre specializing in the rehabilitation of people with addictions and substance abuse challenges is a great place to start if you or someone you love is struggling with addictions, eating disorders, or destructive behaviours. The truth is that the right rehab program can often be enough to help people with a large variety of mental health concerns as well as destructive addictions or behaviours.

Finding the right rehab can be as simple as asking your doctor for a referral or doing a Google search for rehabilitation programs in your area or the place you hope to begin your recovery journey. For example, if you've always heard great things about Arizona and feel you'd do well away from your hometown, you could do a search like "rehabs in Phoenix" to find quality residential programs that can help you get back on track.

What is a mental health retreat?

A mental health retreat is generally an inpatient program for people with a variety of mental health concerns. A far less structured program than a recovery centre or treatment facility, mental health retreats can come in a variety of forms. Some mental health retreats are like support groups where people struggling with similar problems meet to form connections, share ideas, and learn new therapeutic tools to help in their ongoing journeys toward wellness. While some retreats are general with an emphasis on self-care, unplugging, and alternative therapeutic practices, others are more focused and themed around specific issues. For example, many people with relationship challenges enjoy meeting with others who've been in the same situation. A mental health retreat for couples or a retreat for teens struggling with bullying in school is two more examples of the types of retreats out there.

How are rehabs and mental health retreats different?

Retreats are different from rehabilitation programs because the end goal isn't going into recovery, ending or changing a destructive behaviour, or making plans to prevent relapse. Instead, retreats are more casual and flexible with treatment plans, activities, and interventions. In a rehabilitation setting, treatment plans are highly structured to produce optimal results for people focused on recovery from addictions. Some of these programs are court-ordered, where mental health retreats are optional.

How are mental health retreats and rehabs similar?

Retreats and rehabilitation programs are the same in that professional counsellors work with clients to help them be the best versions of themselves. In the end, whether you get cognitive behavioral therapy on a mental health retreat in North Carolina or you opt for a private therapist to treat your mental health disorder and struggles with alcohol, it's a great first step to take your mental health needs seriously.

Clinical psychologists, behaviour specialists, therapists, doctors, and more will be able to assess your mental state and make recommendations about a treatment plan that will have you feeling better sooner than you might think. Best of luck to you as you take the steps to improve your overall mental health. You're worth it.