When you go to a rehabilitation center, a lot can seem uncertain, especially if it's your first time. You might not be sure what kinds of people you'll meet, what you'll learn, or how you'll feel. Fortunately, there's usually no mystery about what to pack. Most treatment centers will give you a checklist of things to pack. They'll also provide a list of items that are prohibited. What items will you not be allowed to bring to a rehabilitation center? Some are common sense, while others might surprise you.
The exact packing list will vary slightly from center to center. However, you can expect the gist of them to be the same. You'll be allowed to bring necessities. Different centers will have different policies regarding whether you can bring extra items. These are some of the items that will typically be prohibited.
Prohibited Items in Rehab
Some prohibited items are just a matter of common sense. Inpatient rehab is highly recommended because it provides a stable environment free of drugs and alcohol. You'll be able to work through your issues without being triggered by the stresses of day-to-day life. In keeping with this, you won't be allowed to bring narcotics, prohibited prescriptions, drugs, or alcohol onto the premises.
Other common sense items are weapons and pornography. You should double check to make sure nothing in your luggage can qualify as a weapon. Even if it isn't intended for use as a weapon, a sharp object or blade might be confiscated. You'll also likely be banned from bringing electronic cigarettes. Make sure none of your beauty products or toiletries contain alcohol. Many perfumes and mouthwashes do.
Dress Code Violations
You'll be prohibited from bringing certain kinds of clothing with you. Any kind of revealing clothing will be off-limits. You'll have to leave your tank tops, sleeveless shirts, and halter tops at home. If the packing list includes a bathing suit, you should get a one-piece. For women, a two-piece that covers your midriff may also work.
Any kind of clothing that has profanity or references to violence, alcohol, and drugs will be prohibited.
Prohibited Recreational Items
You might be surprised by the recreational items that are prohibited. Most treatment centers will ban the following:
- Video games
- Playing cards and other games
- Nail polish and items related to nail polish
- Books that aren't about a pre-approved topic
DVDs and video games make sense, as do electronics. You won't have access to many electronics unless you're supervised. The staff needs to make sure you don't play violent video games or watch violent movies. A ban on electronics also helps you to focus on the treatment center, rather than staying "plugged in."
Nail polish is usually banned because of the chemicals. Some people try to abuse the fumes in nail polish and polish remover to achieve a high. Since the center is a strict sober living environment, these items can't be permitted.
You might be puzzled about the playing cards and books, though. The goal is to help you focus on your treatment. Games and books are distractions that can take away from your treatment plan. When you have recreational time, it will be provided by the rehabilitation center.
Some centers will permit books as long as they're about a pre-approved topic. Self-help books are sometimes allowed, as are books about alcoholism and drug treatment. The exact book policy is varied depending on where you seek treatment. If you want to know about a specific center's policy, you can ask the intake counselor.
Certain chemicals will be prohibited on campus as well. Like the aforementioned nail polish, sometimes people will try to use these chemicals to achieve a "high." Other times, chemicals can be dangerous, especially if a person is having a mental health crisis.
You won't typically be able to bring aerosols onto the campus. You also won't be able to bring cleaning supplies like ammonia and bleach. Cleaning typically won't be your responsibility, anyway.
Incense and candles will also typically be banned. Incense can have powerful effects depending on the type. It can also irritate people with sensory issues or weak respiratory systems. Banning candles and incense is a way of ensuring the health and safety of everyone on the campus.
If you're ready to start treatment, we have trained counselors available 24/7 at 800-737-0933.