Adolescent Residential Treatment in Iowa: Preparing for a Sober Future
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When teens are in a recovery program for a substance use disorder, they learn vital skills to resist substances and live a sober life. However, having a sober future also requires building life skills that will allow them to maintain successful and productive lives. Adolescent residential treatment centers in Iowa, such as Ember Recovery, are committed to helping teens develop these skills along with the skills needed to stay away from harmful substances. We will explore several essential life skills that can help your teen have a successful future.

Learning Essential Life Skills for a Sober Future During Adolescent Residential Treatment in Iowa

Practicing Good Self-Care

Practicing good self-care is essential to help prevent relapse after recovery and to have a sober future. Self-care means having a healthy diet, exercising, meditating, and doing anything else that helps to care for the mind and body.[1] Your teen can establish a routine that may involve taking a walk every day or hitting the gym with a friend. Downloading podcasts can also assist in making a routine of meditation.

Financial Literacy

Understanding how to set a budget and save money is essential for teens, especially those looking to live sober. If your teen has a job after treatment, you can help them set a budget that includes setting aside spending money and putting money in a savings account. This is also a great opportunity to teach your teen about budgeting for large items they want to save up for.

Time Management

Time management allows teens to strike a balance to see that there is time to accomplish everything they want. While a schedule may seem restrictive, it can show your teen where in their day they have time for certain activities. Once they finish something, they can feel accomplished in their daily tasks. This helps to foster positivity and build self-esteem as they learn they can do whatever they set their minds to.

Goal Setting

Besides remaining sober, encourage your teen to set other goals. This may include mastering a new task or finishing a book. Ask your teen what types of things they want to accomplish and help them set a reasonable timeframe to get them done.

Building Healthy Relationships

Social skills and building healthy relationships are essential life skills that all teens should master. This is especially true for teens who need to make new friends that are not associated with their past substance use. If your teen is apprehensive in this area, try role-playing exercises to help them deal with any social anxieties. This will also help them build their communication skills, an essential area of life skills that your teen needs to learn and feel comfortable with.


Problem-solving skills are vital skills that teens will need throughout their lives. They will encounter problems at school, work, home, and their relationships. Learning how to solve them effectively will empower your teen to be independent, make decisions on their own, and sort out conflicts.

To build these skills, you can present them with situations and ask how they would solve the problem. For example, if a friend asks them to use a substance, how would they react? Perhaps they’re working on a school project, and one student isn’t pulling their weight. How would they approach that problem? These are the types of situations you can ask them about and practice problem-solving skills.

The Importance of Life Skills During Sobriety

As teens learn these life skills, they can help to maintain their sobriety as they begin to feel more positive about themselves. This can help to ward off feelings that may lead them to relapse. Teens can build self-esteem and discover they can handle whatever life brings them during recovery.

Learning and mastering life skills can also prevent stress, which can lead to relapse. As teens regain their confidence, they will discover they can handle situations without using substances. Life skills are also necessary because they help teens establish new long-term habits that can help them have prosperous lives at home, school, and in their communities.

Are You Looking for Adolescent Residential Treatment Centers in Iowa? Ember Recovery is Here

Ember Recovery is here to provide the residential treatment programs that your teen needs to live a sober life and maintain sobriety. We teach teens the real-life skills they need to embrace their sobriety and succeed. We get to know each patient to determine their needs and develop a customized care plan. Contact us today to learn more about our programs and how they can help to get your teen on the right track.