Can a Person Check Themselves Out Of Rehab?

Can a Person Check Themselves Out Of Rehab?

People seek rehabilitation for various reasons, ranging from personal choice to interventions by family or friends. The programs available differ in scope and duration, with those showing higher success rates typically being long-term and incorporating an aftercare strategy to support ongoing recovery post-discharge. Despite this, some individuals may choose to depart prematurely, leaving the program against medical advice. Continue with this article to explore the query: can a person check themselves out of rehab?

Why Can A Person Check Themselves Out of Rehab?

It is important to understand the reasons for wanting to check out in the first place. This way, you can properly address the question, can a person check themselves out of a rehab center? The goal is for the family system to work with the treatment professionals to help the individual finish their treatment plan.

A person can experience withdrawal when they abruptly or suddenly stop using the substance they are addicted to. The symptoms of withdrawal may manifest physically, mentally, emotionally, or all of these together. The severity of the symptoms can vary from person to person.

These symptoms may include:

  • Vomiting
  • Muscle pains
  • Hallucination
  • Shaking or chills
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Denial Or Overconfidence.

Some individuals may believe that rehab isn’t necessary for them, feeling their situation isn’t severe enough to warrant professional help. They might be confident in their ability to recover independently, considering rehab an unnecessary expenditure of time and resources.

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Alternatively, while already in a rehabilitation program, they may perceive themselves as different from their peers, perhaps viewing themselves as more resilient or intelligent than others struggling with addiction. This attitude often serves as a protective barrier, preventing them from fully acknowledging the impact of their addiction and its consequences.

Additionally, the initial sense of well-being and joy that comes with early sobriety can lead some to prematurely conclude they are “cured.” Experiencing some level of improvement, they might feel sufficiently rehabilitated, convincing themselves that further stay in rehab is redundant.

Occasionally, individuals may find themselves dissatisfied with their chosen rehabilitation facility due to displeasure with the environment, facilities, accommodations, staff interactions, or conflicts with other participants.

It’s important to take such concerns seriously and motivate your loved one to communicate their grievances to the facility’s administration. Feelings of homesickness and longing for familiar faces can further compound their wish to exit the program sooner than planned.

Regardless of the motivations behind the desire to leave the rehab program, it’s vital to remember that such discomforts are often fleeting. Families are advised to gain knowledge on ways to effectively support their loved ones during treatment. This includes establishing healthy boundaries and support systems that encourage individuals to persist and complete their recovery plan.

How Can A Person Check Out Of Rehab?

How is it possible for an individual to discharge themselves from a rehabilitation center?

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Opting out of a treatment program prematurely mirrors exiting a hospital without receiving formal medical clearance. This action is commonly called “leaving against medical advice,” or AMA. Patients can bypass standard procedures, reclaim their personal items from the facility, and depart from the program independently.

It’s important to note that the majority of Substance Use Disorder treatment programs are not “lock-down” facilities, meaning they lack the mechanisms to detain individuals who choose to leave willingly.

Can A Person Check Themselves Out Of A Rehab Center And Stay Sober?

Is it feasible for someone to leave a rehab center on their own and maintain sobriety?

While we steer clear of definitive statements, the possibility exists. However, evidence suggests that prematurely exiting rehab, particularly against medical advice, poses significant risks for several reasons:

  • High Chance Of Relapse

Without the supportive environment of a detox or a rehab program, those struggling are at a high risk of relapse upon leaving without completing successfully. When an individual struggling with addiction leaves rehab against medical advice, they are often fearful, uncertain, and anxious about their next steps. These unregulated emotions can lead to high stress and a high likelihood of relapse.

  • Health Risks

Withdrawal from most drugs and alcohol can be hazardous and even fatal. Symptoms can include digestive problems, violent shaking that can lead to physical injuries, paranoia, extreme emotions such as anger or sadness, which can harm oneself or others, seizures, stroke, and overdosing. It is essential to stay in a medically monitored environment until the medical professionals clear you to leave.

  • Financial Toll

Many insurance companies will not cover a stay in rehab when the individual has repeatedly left against medical advice. It can become challenging to find help if insurance does not provide authorization for your rehab stay. Look for support amongst the staff or your family if you feel frustrated with your rehab program.

  • Long Term Sobriety

Recovery from addiction is not a one-way street. It is a commitment that lasts a lifetime. A goal in rehab is to learn the necessary skills to continue their progress after the person has completed the program and is discharged. When a person does not finish their treatment, they return to society without learning these key skills. Without this support, studies reveal that the chance of maintaining long-term sobriety will drastically reduce.

Can a Person Check Themselves Out Of Rehab?
Can a Person Check Themselves Out Of Rehab?
  • Breaking Trust

Family members committed to maintaining healthy boundaries typically do not endorse a loved one’s decision to leave rehab, especially if addiction has led to repeated departures. Such actions can be perceived as a breach of trust for those who have supported their recovery journey.

Continuing to support someone who repeatedly refuses to adhere to a treatment plan can become unsustainable. Establishing boundaries is a constructive form of support, emphasizing that exiting rehab prematurely is neither encouraged nor facilitated in any form, be it financial, emotional, or physical support.

Can a Rehab Center Keep You Against Your Will?

Rehab centers typically cannot hold patients against their will unless there are specific legal circumstances, such as court-ordered treatment. Voluntarily this means that patients have the right to leave, but it’s advised to discuss concerns with the staff first. Legal exceptions like the Marchman Act in Florida can mandate treatment under certain conditions.

Can You Leave Rehab Whenever You Want?

Indeed, you can depart at your discretion in a voluntary rehabilitation program. Nonetheless, it’s crucial to weigh the potential repercussions and hazards associated with an early exit, such as an increased likelihood of relapse and significant health risks. Communicating your intentions with the rehabilitation staff and reflecting on the advantages of seeing the program through to its conclusion is advisable.

What Happens If You Leave Rehab Against Medical Advice?

Departing from rehabilitation against medical advice (AMA) carries various adverse outcomes, such as an elevated risk of relapse, potential health issues, and the possibility of facing financial burdens if insurance denies coverage for subsequent treatments. Additionally, it may negatively affect your relationships with family and friends. Consequently, considering these potential risks carefully before leaving AMA is essential.

Can a Person Check Themselves Out of A Rehab Center Like HEAL Behavioral Health?

The short answer is yes. a luxury rehab center such as HEAL Behavioral Health is a trauma-focused addiction treatment center geared towards adults aged 18+ who want to willingly participate in their treatment plan. We are not a lock-down facility. The team at HEAL has an exceedingly high success rate with individuals who are “treatment-resistant.”

Marchman Act

In Florida, families or concerned individuals have the option to approach the courts for a Marchman Act order, which legally requires a person facing substance abuse issues to undergo treatment. This legal intervention aims to reduce the chances of the individual prematurely leaving rehabilitation before the completion of the Marchman Act period.

HEAL Behavioral Health collaborates with families from the initial stages of applying for the Marchman Act, throughout the legal process, and during the entire period of the mandated treatment to support their loved one’s recovery journey.


HEAL Behavioral Health employs a licensed interventionist who is readily available to engage with patients contemplating early discharge from rehab. This professional is adept at addressing the concerns of individuals considering leaving for a variety of reasons, with a proven track record of success in onsite crisis interventions.

When pondering whether an individual can self-discharge from rehab, it’s critical to select a facility equipped with the necessary resources and a dedicated team capable of persuading your loved one to reconsider premature departure. Exiting rehab early poses significant risks to physical, emotional, and mental health, with a heightened chance of relapse or even fatal outcomes if the treatment plan is not fully completed.


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