First Step: Contacting our Team
Getting started with addiction treatment can be scary, but when you understand everything from the first step to admissions, it can make the decision to begin rehab much easier.

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How To Prepare For Rehab: What You Need To Know

When alcohol or drug use becomes an addiction when it is destroying your life or the life of a loved one, your primary emotion is fear: of what continued drug or alcohol use will do to you or your loved one, and about the costs (physical, emotional, and financial) of addiction treatment.

Even trying to find rehab is frightening. Is treatment available? Is it nearby? Does it work? Can I afford it?

Many of these questions and concerns can be addressed with an online questionnaire or phone call without leaving your home. Our treatment specialists are knowledgeable and trained to find you the right and best available treatment as quickly as possible with all the courtesy you deserve.

Call us, fill out a Contact Us form or a Verify Your Insurance form, and our intake experts will quickly reply by email or phone.

What is the First Phone Call Like?

The first phone call is the first step of Intake, the getting-to-know-you process when our treatment specialists work with you to determine what you want and need from rehab and how to get it.

Once our counselors have your information, they will reach out to you with our findings or for more information. If you are doing this on behalf of a loved one, be sure to have their personal and insurance information.

Among the questions we may ask are:

  • Your name.
  • What substance use (alcohol, prescription medications, illicit drugs) do you need help with.
  • How long you have used the substance.
  • If you have a mental health disorder.
  • If you are using any medications or other substances
  • If you have health insurance and, if so, what kind of policy and with whom.
  • If you have been in rehab before.
  • If you have a specific rehab location in mind.

If you have questions, please ask them as well. Then we will work with you to design an effective substance use disorder treatment plan that fits your desires, finances, and needs.

Our experts will work with your health insurer to get you the necessary treatment with as little out-of-pocket cost as possible.

What happens when I talk with a substance use disorder admissions coordinator?

When you talk with a substance use disorder admissions coordinator, you are helping us learn how we can help you. The more questions you answer, the more concerns you express, the better we can help you into and through recovery.

Providing your insurance information online before your phone call speeds up the process and helps us determine if and how much rehab will cost you personally. If you wait until you’re on the phone with the customer service representative, you may be put on hold briefly while the admissions coordinator gets on the line.

Don’t feel too frustrated if the admissions coordinator asks the same questions you just answered. That’s to make sure the information was taken down correctly. The wrong answer might not seriously affect your care, but there’s no need to take chances with your health.

The admissions coordinator may ask additional, more specific, or in-depth questions, such as:

  • If you know what kind of treatment you want or feel you need.
  • How long you want to or can stay in rehab.
  • If you or your loved one has a stable and healthy family life.
  • How or why the substance use disorder began and if you know why it became abuse.
  • If you have tried rehab before and, if so, why you relapsed.

We ask these questions so we can better understand your substance use disorder and design the best treatment plan for your needs.

If it’s your loved one who needs help, they should be in on the phone call. If they don’t want help or change their mind, we can’t make them go. You, however, may be able to persuade them.

What if my loved one doesn’t want to enter rehab?

If you have realized that your loved one needs substance use disorder treatment before they have accepted it, you may need to stage an intervention.

Interventions are groups of people—family, friends, co-workers—who, gently and lovingly, ambush the person with a substance use disorder to convince them that they need help. The group members usually write individual letters describing how the individual’s substance use disorder has affected them and how they perceive it has affected the individual.

Sometimes an intervention specialist—such as a counselor, nurse, or doctor—guides the intervention to keep it productive and to act as a neutral third party.

An intervention should not be the first or only attempt made to persuade the loved one to go to rehab, but it is sometimes necessary to show that many people see a problem and that the individual is worth saving.

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What happens after my loved one agrees to seek treatment?

People with substance use disorders who agree to rehab can’t always maintain that resolve for long. So, once you or your loved one agrees to enter treatment, you should contact our admission coordinator as soon as possible. This pre-admissions process can be completed in about 30 minutes.

Approval and arrangements to travel to Chapters Capistrano can probably be completed on the same day.

What should I pack? What should I leave at home?

You are advised and permitted to bring a wide range of personal possessions, but there are exceptions. You should get a comprehensive list from your admissions coordinator.

Items to bring include:

  • Your driver’s license, passport, or other government-issued photo ID.
  • Your health insurance card or a copy (front and back).
  • A list of all your current medications and the proper dosages. These will be prescribed and dispensed to you as needed by our consulting physician
  • A list of people and phone numbers—healthcare professionals, past and present; family members; friends—you would like to be involved in your treatment.
  • Comfortable clothing, such as exercise clothing, jeans, or casual wear—enough for a week at least before you have to wash them—that can be layered. The weather is warm and sunny, but mornings can be chilly.
  • Pajamas, slippers, and a bathrobe. If you have trouble falling asleep, consider getting a sleeping mask or earplugs.
  • Bathing suit. Chapters Capistrano has a pool, sauna, Jacuzzi, and easy access to the ocean.
  • Personal toiletries, including a toothbrush, toothpaste, mouthwash, face wash, a favorite shampoo, suntan lotion, facial tissues, and cosmetics. Make sure they are alcohol-free.
  • Cash or a debit/credit card to pay for any incidental expenses. You will have shopping opportunities or our staff can pick things up for you.
  • Shoes to wear every day and while exercising.
  • Any electronic devices, such as cell phones, laptops, tablets, radios, and cameras for use during leisure time.
  • Any tobacco or smoking products for use in designated areas outside the facility.
  • Writing and reading materials, such as a journal or notebook to chronicle your thoughts and feelings during recovery.
  • Personal mementos, such as a framed photograph to make you feel more comfortable and at home.

What not to bring: 

  • Anything containing narcotics
  • Anything containing alcohol.
  • Anything sexually explicit, including reading material.
  • A surfboard.

If you are not sure what to bring and what not to bring, call us.

How do clients travel to Chapters Capistrano?

While we will not pay for your travel to Chapters Capistrano, we can assist you in finding affordable transportation. Also, our driver will pick you up from the airport or bus depot, or train station.

Medical disclaimer:

Sunshine Behavioral Health strives to help people who are facing substance use disorder, addiction, mental health disorders, or a combination of these conditions. It does this by providing compassionate care and evidence-based content that addresses health, treatment, and recovery.

Licensed medical professionals review material we publish on our site. The material is not a substitute for qualified medical diagnoses, treatment, or advice. It should not be used to replace the suggestions of your personal physician or other health care professionals.

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