Can I Get Substance Abuse Treatment for Free?

It would be ingenuous to say that getting free substance abuse treatment is easy. Getting free treatment is possible, but you may have to search around for a facility that will help you. There is no question that the economic situation in the United States is hardly robust for a great many people, and while there may be some slow improvement, those who want to live a drug free life will want to get help now and not wait for some nebulous time in the future to straighten up their existences.

While the situation is undoubtedly frustrating, there are ways to avail yourself of free substance abuse treatment from a number of sources. Your access to these treatment programs will depend in large measure on where you live – those living in urban settings will have more options than those who live in rural areas.

Professional Substance Abuse Facilities

Receiving treatment at most substance abuse facilities is extremely expensive, especially if the addict is going to be residing at the facility itself. However, some of these centers will offer a limited number of spaces where patients will be treated for nothing.

If you or a loved one is looking to get rid of an addiction, it never hurts to simply call nearby facilities and ask whether they do have a program for free treatment. Some of these treatment centers also offer a sliding scale based on income. Even if they do not provide free treatment, they may be able to steer you towards a facility that does.

State and Local Rehabilitation Centers

States, county, and municipal governments are a good place to search when you are looking for free rehabilitation from addiction. These programs are free and are supported by tax money. However, you have to be advised that because of the volume of people seeking treatment at these facilities, there is generally a very long waiting list.

State and other government facilities offer a range of services, much like those offered by private centers:

  • Residential facilities for those who need extended assistance.
  • Walk-in rehab clinics where counseling is offered.
  • Detox centers for short term help.

Finding a facility is fairly easy by contacting SAMHSA. This stands for Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. This agency is a part of the Health and Human Service Department and can be reached at

Online Help

As with nearly everything else, there is a source for free substance abuse help on the internet. There are a number of sites that provide chat and bulletin boards to assist people in shedding their drug or alcohol habits. Often, just having the support of others who have gone through or are experiencing the same struggles can help you overcome substance abuse on your own.

Support Groups

Free help for substance abuse is actually available from a several groups that provide counseling and/or emotional support for those who want to become drug free.

  • Religious groups of all denominations have always had programs available to help those in their sect overcome addictions of all kinds. These free programs even predate Alcoholics and Narcotics Anonymous, and have expanded in recent years in response to the addiction epidemic.
  • Alcoholics and Narcotics Anonymous are well known for offering the support needed to stop abusing alcohol or drugs. While these organizations don’t offer counseling per se, they still give those who are ready to return to a normal life a way to do so for free.

Going It Alone

Simply stopping the use of drugs or alcohol on your own is possible, but it takes a very strong and determined person to do so. The success rate of people who just go ‘cold turkey’ is not astounding, but it can be done. Please keep in mind that those who are trying to stop drinking should seek medical advice before cutting out alcohol altogether as those who have been alcoholics for years can undergo serious and sometimes fatal reactions when the body is deprived of alcohol suddenly.

If you’re serious about getting control over your life again, free substance abuse programs can help – never give up on finding a program that will work for you, and never give up on yourself.

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