What Items to Leave at Home During Rehabilitation

person packing a suitcase

By Christina Utti

Making the decision to enter into a residential drug treatment facility can be stressful and scary.

We are leaving behind our loved ones and a way of life to which we have been accustomed to embark on our journey of recovery. Most people on their way to a drug treatment center are a mess. What to pack is probably the last thing on their mind. If you or your loved one is on your way to a residential facility, here is a quick, easy checklist of what to bring and what not to bring.

What to bring:
  • About a week’s worth of clothing. Most treatment centers have washers and dryers available. Make sure to pack clothes that are comfortable, and make sure to pack pajamas.
  • Sneakers and clothes comfortable for working out. Although you may feel terrible now, when you are feeling better, exercise is usually encouraged.
  • Comfy slippers.
  • Writing supplies. Pens, pencils, and a notebook are good things to have with you so you can journal your recovery.
  • Non-alcoholic make-up.
  • Prescribed medications.
  • A bath towel or two.
  • Driver’s license and insurance card.
What not to bring:
  • Do not bring any clothes that may have a reference to drugs or alcohol.
  • Do not bring short-shorts or low-cut shirts.
  • Do not bring hairsprays, mouthwash, or any other beauty product that may contain alcohol.
  • Do not bring your books, unless they are related to recovery. (Living Sober, Alcoholics Anonymous, NA Guidebook, etc.)
  • Do not bring high heels. Drug treatment centers are not clubs.
  • Leave your laptop at home.
  • You can take your cell phone, but it will most likely be taken and locked up for you. Most facilities will not permit cell phones at all. Those that do may return it to you after detox. Each facility has specific rules on cell phone use.
  • Do not bring any food or drinks, including candy or chewing gum.
  • Do not bring jewelry or a lot of cash.
  • Do not bring electronic equipment such as tablets, radios, etc.
  • Do not bring a camera.
  • Do not bring weapons of any kind, not even a penknife.
  • Last but not least, do not bring alcohol or drugs.

If you have any questions about what is permitted, feel free to call the facility. Try not to stress about what to pack. Anything that is not permitted will be taken, locked up, and held for you until you leave (except drugs or alcohol, which will be discarded). There will be days and times that loved ones can come visit and bring you items that you may have forgotten to pack, or items that you need. Take a deep breath. Everything will be okay, and you will have all you need at the drug treatment facility. Do not overpack, and good luck!

If you are ready to get help and be free of addiction, please contact us now at 800.218.6727. Our trained professionals can help.