Are There Free Alcohol Treatment Centers for Teens?
All parents want what’s best for their kids, but very few parents are able to afford acting out on their wants. The parents of alcoholic teenagers are all too familiar with this situation. Many feel that a professional rehab center is out of their financial reach. However, there are many free alcohol treatment centers and programs for teenagers.
Ask Your State Representative
Locate the office of your local state representative. The staff there is often asked about state sponsored services, such as free or low-cost alcohol treatment centers for teenagers. Although you can email the staff using the contact email or form on your representative’s website, it’s best to go in person to the representative’s office. This helps your privacy and creates a sense of urgency.
Contact Your State Attorney General
If for some reason the staff at your local representative’s office cannot help you, you can also contact the website of your state’s Attorney General to find out details of alcohol treatment centers. Keep in mind that you may have to travel considerably in across your state in order to find a free or low-cost program. Although you should stick with state licensed centers, you may have no alternative but use an unlicensed center. You can check with your state’s Attorney General to see if there have been any recent complaints.
Professional Alcohol Treatment Centers
You can always call a specific treatment center to see if any discounts or fee waivers could be considered for your teen. Explain your situation. You may still need to go through a credit rating. You may be able to get a medical loan to help pay for your teen’s treatment. Never assume that all rehab programs near you are too expensive. It does not hurt to ask. Since all treatment centers will be asked about costs, they may be able to point you to other low-cost rehabilitation centers or programs.
What About AA?
Although many thousands of alcoholics have been helped by Alcoholics Anonymous, it’s not for everyone. It also does not offer any medical help for alcohol withdrawal symptoms as a teen dries out. No one in AA can prescribe medication. However, AA can help a teen when he or she has been released and is most tempted back to old drinking habits. Each AA chapter is run differently. Some are more faith-based than others. Sit in on a meeting to see what it is like. Another alternative is to use online support groups that follow the same 12 step plan as AA.
If your teen is religiously inclined, there are many low-cost faith-based ongoing rehab programs across the country. Places to search include the Salvation Army and Jews in Recovery. No one in these programs can help prescribe medication or medical treatments. They do provide support, coping strategies and encouragement.