Breaking the Stigma of Residential Treatment

doctor and client discussing breaking the stigma of residential treatment

Breaking the Stigma of Residential Treatment


Once upon a time, it was taboo even to talk about mental health issues. People struggling with addiction issues were locked away from society and not discussed. The majority of society saw them as “weak-willed” and blamed them for their illness. Addiction, it was thought, was a question of will power, and only the weak-minded could succumb to it. It has been a long road to breaking the stigma surrounding addiction, and to breaking the stigma of residential treatment in particular.

Now we know better. The American Psychological Association and the Mayo Clinic have very clearly stated that addiction is a disease. And we talk about people “suffering from” and “struggling with” addiction rather than blaming them. This said, we still have a long way to go in terms of breaking the stigma of residential treatment in America. And it’s time that we did.

The Nature of the Stigma

One of the reasons that breaking the stigma of residential treatment is so important is that it affects real people. Individuals struggling with addiction issues need help. This is why at Lakeview Health, we offer such a wide range of addiction treatment services aimed directly at helping them overcome their substance abuse problems.

Breaking the stigma of residential treatment means that when your loved one needs help, they should be able to get the help they need without judgment. And specifically without being made to feel that they are “broken” or “defective.” Breaking the stigma of residential treatment means that the doctor who has developed a habit because of her busy schedule, or the man who has turned to alcohol after losing his job can get treatment without being seen as unstable or unreliable. It’s time to change our attitudes towards care. But how can we start breaking the stigma of residential treatment in this country?

What We Can Do to Break the Stigma

There are several steps that we can take to help rid the residential treatment of this stigma. Among these are:

  • We can all spread the word that addiction is a disease, not a flaw. We do not judge individuals with heart conditions, diabetes, or cancer. And the numbers show us that more people are suffering from addiction in the US than any of these.
  • Make what happens in a residential treatment facility less of a mystery. The best cure for this stigmatizing is education. When people see that the kinds of treatments that take place in addiction recovery centers are clinical, medical treatment, their preconceptions will slip away.
  • Be open and honest with people about treatment. If you or someone you care about has struggled with addiction, don’t change the subject. Only when we have taken away the taboo nature of the subject and brought it out into the open can we start breaking the stigma of residential treatment.

Contact Lakeview Health for Help

Residential treatment is about helping individuals who need it most. At Lakeview Health, we have a long history of focusing on addiction no matter the severity, and no matter the sufferer. We also have both residential and outpatient care and make a point of tailoring our treatment programs to each individual. Don’t let substance abuse control your life any longer. Contact Lakeview Health online, or call 866.704.7692 today.