The ancient temple located on the top of the hill in Chiang Mai, Thailand.

Best Rehab in Thailand? Monastic, Budget or Holistic?

Rehabs in Thailand offer addiction and mental health treatment to people from every walk of life – and at a fraction of the cost of rehab centers in Australia, the USA, the UK or Europe. Many former addicts attribute much of their success to extended stays in a Thailand rehab centre and the industry is growing quickly. Thailand rehab options range from zero-frills vomit temples to world-class facilities with treatment standards on par with the very best rehab abroad around the world.

Buddhist Rehab Temples 

Thailand’s monastic rehab, Tham-Krabok

Buddhist rehab temples offer extreme treatment programs in spartan compounds surrounded by chain-link fence. At these so-called vomit temples, monks believe that only physical purging and self-exploration through meditation, spirituality, and existential reflection can lead to change and recovery.

Here at the best rehab in Thailand, the treatment approach is the same for everyone. Detoxification involves repeatedly ingesting a bitter, vomit-inducing brown liquid, carefully concocted from a closely guarded recipe by the master herbalist.

Patients also take a sacred vow of abstinence. No 12 Steps, no harm reduction. The vow is your 100% commitment to complete renunciation of drugs and alcohol from that day forward. In return, patients are rewarded with stronger willpower to succeed. The rest of the programme is chanting, silent meditation, herbal saunas, and simple chores. Thai rehab temple fees are by voluntary donation, making them the cheapest option of all.

Budget Rehab Centres

Budget rehab centre in Thailand.

Budget rehabs in Thailand offer drug and alcohol addiction programmes in a supportive environment where shared or private accommodation is comfortable and the treatment focus is on the essentials of addiction recovery versus a more all-encompassing mental health treatment approach – which would require the treatment centers to retain therapists with more versatile skill sets and therefore higher salaries that would make their budget rehab business model unviable.

The programmes at these drug rehab Thailand centres follow the 12 Step model and combine therapy with massage, physical fitness and art therapy. Most of the counsellors are trained only in addiction treatment, while dedicated support staff keep you on track and encourage you to stay if you feel like running away or returning to past negative behaviours. It is not unusual for people at some point in their rehab journey to feel that they don’t like their rehab, decide that they don’t need it for their recovery, or to become ambivalent about their successful completion of treatment. These reactions are often related to the challenges in breaking away from old habits and ending the cycle of addiction. Support staff are critical in helping to move you through these complicated feelings and stay on track with recovery. 

Unlike the lockdown environment of the rehabs in Australia or the UK, inpatient rehabs in Thailand enjoy culturally enriching excursions such as Thai cooking classes and sightseeing. Importantly, support does not end when you leave, almost all rehabs in Thailand have online aftercare programmes.

Monthly rates at these budget rehabs in Thailand range from $3,000 to $10,000 USD.

Holistic Rehab Centres

There are many luxury rehab centres in Thailand.

Holistic rehab centres in Thailand offer the ability to address addiction or other mental health problems or a combination of both, also known as a co-occurring disorder. This type of rehab in Thailand are staffed with multidisciplinary therapists who are trained in addressing addiction as well as various mental health conditions, including trauma – which is at the root or a significant component of most addictions or mental health cases.  

The counselling team is supported by a medical team led by a psychiatrist, enabling the centres to offer medically-assisted treatment and professionally monitored detox. A support team also ensures you stay on track and make it to every appointment.

Despite these centres’ heavy investment in high-quality treatment service and more sophisticated treatment options, drug rehab thailand cost are significantly cheaper than similar standard centres in Australia or the UK due to the overall lower cost of living in South East Asia. 

These rehabs also offer a better staff-to-patient ratio. Personalised treatment plans merge Western science with Eastern philosophy to heal the body and mind, also treating co-occurring disorders and mental health issues including trauma, PTSD, anxiety, and depression.

Accommodation standards are generally also higher, especially in a luxury rehab. Clients will get a private room with amenities like a fridge and hair-dryer. Buffet lines use higher-quality ingredients etcetera.

Monthly rates at holistic rehab centres in Thailand range from $10,000 to $16,000 USD.

Sober Living Houses

a woman attends social activity during her sober living programme in Thailand.

Commonly known as halfway houses, experts regard sober living houses (SLHs) as the next step after rehabilitation programmes and an essential element of successful addiction recovery. SLHs cultivate balanced living in a safe, supported environment. It is a time to find new interests and revive old dreams. Residents go to counselling, volunteer, meditate, learn Thai, or try out new things like Muay Thai boxing, climbing, or art.

Monthly rates for sober living houses or halfway houses in Thailand start at $1,000 USD.

Why Choose Rehab?

Rehab typically requires a commitment of both time and money for those who enter it, which may raise questions initially about whether rehab is worth it. Because addiction is a chronic, progressive disease, the decision to go to rehab will always be a choice made in the best interest of one’s long-term physical and mental health. Rehab helps ensure a successful recovery, with 85-95% of those finishing a treatment programme reporting continued sobriety nine months after the programme ends. 

Choosing rehab as part of your recovery also means taking a step towards avoiding a relapse. Relapse can be disappointing and frightening, but is a relatively common part of recovery, with some estimates showing around 40-85% of people relapsing at some point in their recovery process. Treatment programmes will help you learn how to prevent relapse, identify signs of an impending relapse, and what steps to take if a relapse occurs.

When you make the decision to go to rehab, you also choose to give yourself the gift of a concentrated, structured period of time by which to detox, learn about your addiction, understand its root causes, and acquire tools by which to manage it. Three months of rehab is generally considered to be the minimum time needed for treatment to be successful, with longer stints being useful in giving the person more time to practice new skills and further develop thoughts and behaviour outside of the cycle of addiction.

Looking for the Best Drug Rehab in Thailand?

The Dawn is the best rehab in Thailand for inpatient treatment for both mental health and addiction.

The Dawn, best alcohol rehab in Thailand, is a holistic rehab centre for those seeking affordable treatment services in a serene riverside setting in Chiang Mai, Thailand that inspires change. We treat addiction and mental health disorders with individualised non-religious programmes and dedicated aftercare.

Our unique Twin Pillars approach tackles addiction from all angles, empowering clients with effective tools to stop the negative behaviour and promoting wellness with holistic therapy, massage, physical exercise, and a wholesome diet.

Individualised attention is unsurpassed with an exceptional 1:1 staff-to-client ratio. Our cohesive team of Australia-, UK- and USA-trained licensed professionals have extensive experience, and they all share one goal: your successful recovery. They are there to help you every single step of the way.

Contact us to speak confidentially with one of our admissions managers and get started on your journey to recovery.

Q: How much does rehab cost for 3 months?

A: Thai rehab temple fees are by voluntary donation, making them the cheapest option of all. Monthly rates at budget rehabs in Thailand range from $3,000 to $10,000 USD. Monthly rates at holistic rehab centres in Thailand range from $10,000 to $16,000 USD. Monthly rates for sober living houses or halfway houses in Thailand start at $1,000 USD.

Q: What is the success rate of people who go to rehab?

A: Because addiction is a chronic, progressive disease, the decision to go to rehab will always be a choice made in the best interest of one’s long-term physical and mental health. Rehab helps ensure a successful recovery, with 85-95% of those finishing a treatment programme reporting continued sobriety nine months after the programme ends.

Q: Why do people run away from rehab?

A: It is not unusual for people at some point in their rehab journey to feel that they don’t like their rehab, decide that they don’t need it for their recovery, or to become ambivalent about their successful completion of treatment.These reactions are often related to the challenges in breaking away from old habits and ending the cycle of addiction.

Q: How many months does it take to rehab?

A: Three months of rehab is generally considered to be the minimum time needed for treatment to be successful, with longer stints being useful in giving the person more time to practice new skills and further develop thoughts and behaviour outside of the cycle of addiction.

Q: What percentage of users relapse after rehab?

A: Relapse can be disappointing and frightening, but is a relatively common part of recovery, with some estimates showing around 40-85% of people relapsing at some point in their recovery process. Rehab programmes will help you learn how to prevent relapse, identify signs of an impending relapse, and what steps to take if a relapse occurs.

About the Author

John A. Smith is a Senior Psychotherapist at The Dawn and an internationally accredited Addiction Treatment Professional (ISSUP), Certified Life and NLP Coach. He is highly experienced in working with young adults and utilises a range of evidence-based therapies, including SMART Recovery, to help his clients achieve their goals.