Rehab for Seniors in Florida

Addiction is something that affects both the young and the old. It is a disease that does not discriminate between race, gender, personality, or age. Addiction can affect nearly every part of a person’s life. As a person gets older, drugs and alcohol become more powerful and potent. This is why it’s important to get addiction treatment, even if a person is a senior. Fortunately, there is rehab for seniors that create a safe and understanding environment to get help. 

While the elderly population continues to grow, so due to the cases of drug abuse and addiction. There are several factors that contribute to this idea, one of which is a generation that may have grown up in a culture that was more open to drug experimentation and substance use. Believe it or not, this has had an impact on many seniors in today’s world, especially if drug use began earlier in a person’s life. Addiction can be a slippery slope. Drug and alcohol rehab for seniors is recommended for sobriety. No matter a person’s age, it’s never too late to turn things around for the better. 

Substance Abuse Disorders in Elders: The Statistics

A study conducted a few years back reported that nearly 1 million individuals over the age of 65 suffered from a substance use disorder (SUD). This study showed concerns for those born in the baby boom generation (years 1946 to 1964) compared to other generations. This is because of the drug use and experimentation that occurs in that time period. Seniors are also more vulnerable to substance use disorder as time goes on. This is because seniors are more likely to take prescription medication and experience physical and mental problems in the process.

Causes of Addiction in Older Adults

As a person gets older, there are more reasons why a person may turn to substances later in life. There are many life-changing events and physical/mental problems that can arise as a person gets older. Each person’s case is different, regardless of age, or ethnicity. Sometimes it’s a traumatic event or a negative situation that can drive older adults towards substance abuse. Some of the common causes of addiction in seniors include:

  • Loss of a loved one (close friend, wife, husband, family member, etc.)
  • Retirement
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Physical and mental health issues (memory loss, surgery, pain, diseases, etc.)
  • Income or financial problems
  • Family struggles or conflict
  • Change in a person’s environment (nursing home)

These are just some of the reasons why an older adult may turn to drugs or substances. Seniors can end up developing an addiction or a dependence on a drug without even realizing it. If a loved one is struggling with addiction, it may be time to look into rehab for seniors.

Why Substance Abuse is Dangerous for Older Adults/Seniors

Abusing drugs or alcohol as an older adult poses more severe risks and problems than younger people. Those who are over the age of 65 are more vulnerable to the negative effects of substances. Older adults aren’t able to metabolize drugs as well and the effects of alcohol are more intense. Even with addiction out of the question, drinking or using substances can pose a threat to older adults. 

There are many drugs and prescription medication that can end up being a major problem for seniors. Benzodiazepines, for example, are some of the most addictive and dangerous drugs, especially for seniors. This drug is usually used to treat insomnia, pain, and anxiety among other conditions. Benzos are prescribed quite frequently, and many seniors have become addicted to them in recent years.

rehab for seniors

Another dangerous aspect of seniors and addiction is identifying the problem. In many cases, drug and alcohol abuse have the same symptoms as mental health disorders or other conditions. This can make it hard to spot drug or alcohol abuse in an older adult. Conditions like depression and dementia can have some of the same effects as drug abuse. It can be easy for a loved one or doctor to dismiss these symptoms due to growing old. 

Signs and Symptoms of Addiction in Seniors

While it may be easy to confuse drug abuse symptoms with symptoms from other conditions, there are some signs that may indicate an addiction. It’s important to be aware of these symptoms so you can get proper help, specifically rehab for seniors. Look out for these signs in older adults:

  • Changes in eating patterns/habits
  • Problems with memory
  • Desire to be alone or isolated frequently
  • Not bathing or failing to stay clean
  • Unexplained pains
  • Unexplained bruises or pains
  • Depression, irritability, and overall sadness
  • Growing distant from loved ones
  • Changing sleeping patterns/habits
  • Losing interest in hobbies and activities they used to enjoy

It is important to act fast if you feel that a loved one has an addiction. There are many treatment centers that are catered to older adults. Drug and alcohol rehab for seniors can create a personalized and safe environment for older adults struggling with addiction.

How Does Addiction Occur in Older Adults?

Addiction, in general, can occur even if a person is not intending on it. A person may take more medication that was prescribed here and there or may mix drugs (which is dangerous and unpredictable). Over time this can end up causing dependence and tolerance to a particular drug. Unfortunately, sometimes a person falls victim to addiction after misuse of prescribed medication, while in other cases a person is intentionally abusing drugs. Regardless, it’s important to get proper medical treatment in rehab for seniors.

Addiction is also more prevalent in seniors because of the fact that they may be unaware of how much they are taking. Additionally, some older adults may have trouble paying for their prescriptions which could lead to sharing medication amongst other seniors to save money. Young or old, it’s important to follow your prescription closely and avoid abusing drugs.

What Does Rehab for Seniors Look Like?

Rehab for seniors is best provided in a facility that caters specifically to older adults. Like any case of addiction, the more personalized, the more effective it will be for long-term sobriety. There are many different treatment methods that help seniors and older adults overcome addiction. While some may work better than others, it is imperative that a person gets the proper help they need, young or old.

When it comes to addiction treatment there is usually one of two options, general addiction programs and more specific programs that are catered to a specific factor (age, gender, etc.). When it comes to seniors and addiction, age-specific programs are recommended. There are many rehabs for seniors available to you and your loved ones. Let’s take a look at some of the most common forms of addiction treatment for older adults:

Medical Detox

Detoxification is crucial to addiction treatment success. As the first step, medical detox for seniors (and those struggling with addiction) alleviates withdrawal symptoms as well as sets a person up for recovery. Detox rids the body of all toxic substances, including the drug being abused. Medical detox is recommended since detoxing alone can be potentially dangerous without professional supervision. After detox, a person proceeds onto more personalized treatment, catered specifically for seniors. 

Inpatient Treatment for Seniors

A drug or alcohol rehab for seniors typically involves inpatient/residential treatment. Residential treatment usually involves a person staying in a safe and open environment as they recover from addiction. One of the many benefits of inpatient treatment is that there is always help, no matter what part of the day. A person attends specialized therapy sessions while receiving medication assistance in the meantime. Everyone’s path is different but the important thing is to get the proper treatment with the right guidance. For seniors especially, inpatient treatment offers the best chance of recovery and treatment. 

Outpatient Treatment 

rehab for seniors

Outpatient treatment is another widely used form of addiction treatment. However, outpatient treatment is best for cases where a person is suffering from a mild case of addiction. Outpatient treatment offers quality treatment like inpatient treatment except a person does not stay at a facility, they only attend weekly sessions. This is why a person struggling with a severe addiction should consider residential treatment for around-the-clock support. It also may be hard for older adults to travel back and forth on a weekly basis.


Therapy is also widely used in almost every case of addiction. There are several commonly used behavioral therapies such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT). It is important to understand the root of a person’s addiction and how it came to be. Along with speaking with a professional counselor, a person is also taught relapse prevention tips and other coping strategies.

Start the Journey Toward Sobriety Today

Call us today. 844.684.0795

When it comes to rehab for seniors, there are many great options. At Intrepid Detox, we provide the necessary tools to turn you or your loved one’s life around for the better. You can overcome addiction with the right tools and the proper help. Contact us today to learn more about the recovery process at Intrepid Detox. 

Call us today. 844.684.0795