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Celebrating the Holidays While in Inpatient Rehab

It is not unusual for people to celebrate the holidays when they are in inpatient rehab. Once you start a program, particularly if it is a long one, you might be still confined to inpatient care over the holidays. Some inpatient programs last 30, 60, or 90 days, which can encompass the whole holiday seasons in some cases. Fortunately, there are ways to celebrate the holidays while you are in inpatient rehab. Many rehabs go above and beyond to make the holiday special for their residents.

Decorating the Rehab

You can still enjoy the holidays while in rehab.

You can still enjoy the holidays while in rehab.

Many have the residents decorate Christmas trees, hang streamers, and even exchange presents. Most of these presents are handmade through the crafts department of the rehab. Crafts and hobbies are often a normal part of treatment. In the case of the holidays, residents are encouraged to make things for their families and friends as presents. The belief is that something handmade and well thought out makes a better present for loved ones than something store bought or ordered.

Many of the decorations are also handmade. Creating things with your hands is an integral part of treatment most inpatient treatment programs. In this case the crafts serve the dual purpose of giving you something to do with your hands and making presents for your loved ones.

Family Visits

Most inpatient treatment facilities have regular family visits but they go all out during the holidays. With the rehab decorated with a Christmas tree, stockings, handmade decorations, and presents many rehab facilities look almost like Christmas should.

Since rehab often allows patients and family to visit on at regular intervals, they allow Christmas visits and present exchanges like most other holiday households. The only difference is that the presents are frequently checked for contraband when they are coming in.

For patients without any family facilities often have gift exchanges between patients and sometimes a gift pool is given from the facility itself. Many of these gifts are just simple trinkets, chocolates, or other treats.


Many rehab facilities emphasize the holidays and repairing relationships with family and friends. They do this through cards and letters to those who cannot come to visit as well as inviting all those that want to come for holiday get togethers with their loved ones.

Most rehabs also offer a variety of holiday celebrations to accommodate all religions. Since those in recovery are a diverse group they offer diverse activities to help everyone feel a bit less lonely throughout the holiday season.

It is not unusual for someone who uses drugs and is lonely to check themselves into a rehab during the holiday season. This is partially to combat the loneliness and depression of addiction and the holidays and partially to stop the cycle of drug abuse. According to the National Library of Medicine, many inpatient facilities have an influx of patients just before and just after the holidays. For more information on inpatient Christmas celebrations and finding help during the Christmas season, call us at 800-430-1407Who Answers?.

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