Forensic psychologist Jenny Wells ensured that the following article to ensure that all information is factual and accurate.
Conducting a quick search for a “psychiatric hospital near me” will uncover a surprising number of options just a short drive from where you live. Going to one that’s close to home can be a great option, but that doesn’t mean it’s the right option for everyone.
Not all mental health treatment facilities are the same. When it comes to finding a treatment center, you want to make sure that you choose one that provides you with the greatest chance of recovery, whether that is from bipolar disorder, depression, a co-occurring substance use disorder, or any other mental illness you might be struggling with.
Some of the common barriers to receiving effective mental health treatment include the barriers to receiving effective treatment are availability, financing and treatment awareness. By understanding your treatment options, both near and far, you will be able to make an informed choice.
For some, that means traveling far from home. For others, it means staying within a 10-mile radius. Now, here’s the answer to the question: “Should I travel or go to a psychiatric hospital near me?”
Pros of Staying Close to Home for Mental Health Treatment
Social Support: There are many benefits to choosing a treatment facility that is close to home. Most importantly, it will mean that you are close to your support network.
It can be difficult to reach out for help from family, no matter what challenge you’re struggling with. But it is even harder if that challenge involves your mental health. However, the importance of social support in overcoming and recovering from mental health challenges is well established (Orehek & Lakey, 2011; Thoits, 2011).
Strong social support also encourages people to use mental health services (Maulik, Eaton, & Bradshaw, 2011). Being able to reach out and contact your support system when you are in treatment can help you feel grounded, provide positive influence, enhance your self-esteem, give you a sense of belonging, and ensure you feel supported following your stay.
If visits from important family memberare important to you, you should consider staying in a hospital that’s close to home.
Affordability: After Googling “psychiatric hospital near me,” the next step is to consider what your insurance will cover. Sadly, figuring out your insurance is difficult during the best of times. It can feel like an insurmountable obstacle if you’re trying to understand your insurance and whether it covers mental health treatments.
The good news is that the vast majority of insurance covers at least some kinds of mental health treatments. Most will also cover stays at hospitals and treatment centers in other states, but you’ll likely find more in-network options near your state of residence.
In addition, you also have to consider the other costs of your stay, even if you’re covered at an out-of-state hospital. You have to pay to get to and from the hospital, and travel costs can be too much for some patients and their families to bear. However, if you’re traveling to the other side of your state, your chosen mental health care facility may be willing to help you make the trip. In these situations, it’s best to speak with their admissions department to evaluate your options.
Pros of Traveling for Mental Health Care
Getting away from negative influences: Although being close to friends and family is good for some, it isn’t the best choice for others. It’s also true that staying close to home can place you near friends who aren’t supportive of your new, healthy lifestyle. That’s especially the case if you have a co-occurring substance use disorder.
For example, as you begin to learn better coping mechanisms that don’t rely on drugs or alcohol, you may find that some people will still want to drink or use drugs with you, especially if this was your primary way of bonding before. You might learn that being around these influences is unhelpful for you and might increase your risk of making unhelpful choices in the future. In situations like these where you may not have a sober, healthy environment near you, traveling for mental health care could be the right thing to do. This will help you develop strength and resilience in a safe and supportive environment, without the potential harm of negative influences.
Traveling far from home has the potential to provide you with the fresh start you need. For those who don’t have supportive family or healthy friend relationships, a safe and supportive mental health hospital can put you in a new state of mind. You can focus on your own mental health rather than the needs or wants of your family and friends back home.
Traveling Far from Home Provides You with More Treatment Options
Some treatment may seem better than no treatment at all, but you have to think about your long-term recovery. If things are just going to go back to normal when you return home, then maybe you should reevaluate where you want to receive treatment.
You may not like the treatment options that are available near where you live. There’s also the possibility that there isn’t a program that’s a good fit for your needs close to home. That is likely to be the case if you live in a rural area.
Being willing to travel far from home opens up a whole new world of treatment options, enabling you to find the perfect one for your needs. You may also be able to find one in a more tranquil, relaxing setting.
Get the Help You Need
Many times, facing mental health and addiction issues are too much to handle alone. The underlying issues remain, and these are the areas that you’ll help with during treatment. We know that nothing is more disheartening than relapsing after leaving rehab, so we give patients the tools to stay sober.