Treatment Programs to Help Overcome Grief and Loss

Do you feel that you haven’t been the same since losing someone in your life? Does it seem that the painful feelings resulting from your loss have lasted longer or are more severe than you would’ve expected? Have these negative feelings or symptoms started to affect your daily life functioning, interpersonal relationships, or self-esteem?

If so, grief rehab programs at Icarus Behavioral Health can help. Since grief is one of the most painful things to go through in life across the board, it can be tough to identify whether it’s time to seek professional support for prolonged symptoms. So, what should you know?

Let’s discuss what you should know about complicated grief and how Icarus can aid you through the healing process so that you have a better understanding of the support options available.

Understanding Prolonged Grief Disorder

Prolonged Grief Disorder

The grieving process is different for everyone. Most people endure the five stages of grief (denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance) but find that they return to their baseline state after time has passed. While grief and loss are never expected to be easy, the idea is that “normal” grief reactions typically lessen as time goes on. If grief is extreme or continues to affect your life long-term, it may be a sign of complicated grief or prolonged grief disorder.

This can be particularly acute in the case of an unexpected death, or accidental death, such as is often the case with overdose victims.

Prolonged grief disorder is characterized by intense grief that interferes with your daily life or functioning. Other family members and friends of the person who has passed may have returned to their typical routines and can make it through the day. However, prolonged grief disorder, overwhelming emotions, and other symptoms will likely lead to challenges at work, school, home, or other parts of your life for longer than what is typical or expected.

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How is Prolonged Grief Disorder Defined?

For a diagnosis of prolonged grief disorder to occur in adults, the loss must have occurred at least one year ago. For children and adolescents, the loss must have occurred at least six months ago.

Complicated grief can affect your body and mind and may come with various symptoms. Understanding these symptoms can help you identify them in yourself or someone else, which might be the first step to getting help.

With that in mind, here are the main signs and symptoms of prolonged grief disorder:

  • Feelings of disbelief surrounding a person’s death.
  • Avoidance of reminders that the person has passed.
  • Difficulty reintegrating into standard daily life following the expected grieving period. For example, you may have trouble pursuing interests, engaging with friends and loved ones, or planning for the future.
  • Identity disruption or impaired sense of self. For example, feeling as though a part of yourself has died.
  • Intense emotional pain (e.g., feelings of anger, bitterness, or sorrow) related to the death.
  • Extreme feelings of loneliness (or feeling detached from others).
  • Feeling that life is meaningless.
  • Emotional numbness.

People often experience depression symptoms as a result of complicated grief, too. For example, a person may feel tired or fatigued, sleep more than usual, or have trouble sleeping, or they may notice other symptoms, like irritability, body aches, and trouble concentrating.

The Link Between Substance Abuse, Grief, and Mental Health Disorders

Link Between Substance Abuse, Grief

Current statistics indicate that around 7-10% of adults who experience bereavement will face the persistent symptoms of prolonged grief disorder. Anyone can experience complicated grief, though some factors may increase the risk or make the grieving process more difficult for an individual. If this is something you’re going through, it is important to remember that you aren’t alone and that complicated grief is not your fault.

What are the Risk Factors for Complicated Grief?

When left untreated, complicated grief can worsen, and the severity of your symptoms may increase. This is part of why treatment for grief can be essential for those with intense grief symptoms.

With that in mind, here are some potential risk factors for complicated grief:

  • Living with another pre-existing mental health condition, such as post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, or bipolar disorder.
  • Traumatic events associated with the loss (e.g., violence that resulted in a person’s death).
  • Having been a caregiver for the individual prior to their death.
  • Sudden or unexpected death of a loved one.

As for the link between grief and substance abuse, some people start to engage in substance abuse or develop substance use disorders following a loved one’s death. Our treatment center aims to look at everything that could affect a client or influence their care needs, such as co-occurring disorders.

We treat most mental health conditions and can help if you have a co-occurring condition to address alongside grief, whether it is a substance use disorder or another mental health condition. Icarus Behavioral Health offers dual diagnosis treatment for clients with a substance use disorder and one or more additional mental health concerns.

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How Does Treatment for Complicated Grief Work?

A host of therapeutic techniques can be used to address grief in treatment. Research indicates that cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is effective for persistent complex bereavement disorder, prolonged grief disorder, or complicated grief treatment. CBT is also beneficial for mood disorders, stress, anxiety, trauma, and a wide variety of other concerns that may affect your emotional well-being.

Individual and group therapy are two critical elements of treatment at Icarus Behavioral Health. We use a range of evidence-based therapies in individual and group therapy sessions, including but not limited to CBT. Our groups connect you with other clients and teach healthy coping skills.

Icarus Behavioral Health also offers family therapy as a part of our treatment programs. Participating in family therapy can help families learn to communicate healthily and support one another during challenges like grief and loss. Support groups and other activities can also help to decrease isolation and help a person heal.

Get Support Throughout the Grief Process

The goal of grief treatment is to find healthy ways to cope with grief, improve your daily life functioning, and process the loss you have been through in grief counseling. During the admissions process at Icarus Behavioral Health, you will talk about your current symptoms and challenges with an admissions coordinator.

One of the things that sets Icarus Behavioral Health apart is that we treat a wide range of mental health concerns and work closely with each client to build a truly personalized treatment plan. This means that your personal grief treatment plan at Icarus Behavioral Health will focus on meeting your unique needs, regardless of your level of care.

Grief Rehab: Treatment Options at Icarus Behavioral Health

Grief Rehab Treatment

Each level of care at Icarus Behavioral Health requires a distinct time commitment and has certain features that may make it more or less appropriate for you based on your treatment needs. Here are the levels of care at Icarus Behavioral Health and what each one entails.

We can talk you through selecting the level of care that is right for you and your circumstances during the admissions process. If you have any questions about grief treatment at our rehab center, please contact Icarus Behavioral Health for more information.


Detoxification or “detox” helps people get off drugs and alcohol safely with the help of experienced medical staff. If you have a substance use disorder, you may need to attend detox before entering another level of care for grief treatment, such as residential inpatient. Since detox is designed to help clients achieve physical stability but does not address underlying mental health concerns or triggers for substance abuse, it is typically used as a precursor to another level of care, such as residential inpatient.

Residential Inpatient

Residential inpatient is the most intensive form of mental health treatment. When you attend residential care for grief treatment or another concern, you will eat, sleep, and live at your treatment center for the duration of your program. Daily activities may include but aren’t limited to regular groups, individual therapy sessions, recreation activities, and other services.

The 24/7 supervision that inpatient treatment provides can be helpful to those in the early stages of their healing process or those with more severe symptoms.

Partial Hospitalization

Partial hospitalization programs (PHP) are the next level of care below residential inpatient. Despite the name, PHP does not mean you’ll be hospitalized or live at your treatment center part-time. Instead, PHP clients attend their treatment program during the day but return home at night.

Treatment activities are similar to those used in residential inpatients. PHP may be ideal for those who need a high level of care and attention for their concerns but do not require or benefit from 24/7 supervision or living on campus.

Intensive Outpatient

Intensive outpatient treatment (IOP) is less intensive than PHP but more intensive than standard outpatient counseling services. IOP allows you to attend treatment throughout the week for groups, individual therapy, and other treatments. It is more flexible than PHP and gives you more time for external commitments.

Usually, IOP clients commute to their treatment center a few times per week. This makes IOP ideal for clients who need to work, go to school, or care for their families while in treatment.


Standard outpatient care is a step below IOP and requires a significantly lower time commitment of as little as a few hours per week. Often, outpatient is best for those with less severe symptoms or who wish to maintain treatment progress and continue working on their goals with a professional after completing a higher level of care.

What Makes Icarus Behavioral Health Unique?

Location and Amenities of Icarus Behavioral Health

Icarus Behavioral Health is a leader in mental health and addiction treatment for a reason. We focus on whole-person well-being and healing for people from all walks of life. Getting treatment for complicated grief can feel intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be.

Here are some of the reasons clients choose us for their care needs.

Location and Amenities

Our treatment center is based in Albuquerque, New Mexico, with other locations in Rio Rancho and in the planning stage. Our setting allows us to extend experiences to clients that other treatment centers cannot, such as serene hiking trips and special outings.

Admissions and Insurance

New clients will undergo a simple admissions process consisting of insurance verification and a brief assessment before the date of their admission. We will let you know which personal items you can and can’t bring to treatment, give you an idea of what your treatment schedule will look like day-to-day, and answer any questions you might have about our treatment center and approach. If you’re looking for help for a loved one rather than yourself, our treatment center may be able to help in some instances.

During times of intense grief, the last thing you want to think about is treatment costs. Icarus Behavioral Health accepts most major health insurance plans and other payment options. We will verify your health insurance coverage for free before you enter a program at our treatment center. That way, the stress of payment will be off of your shoulders, and you’ll get to focus on healing.

Evidence-Based Treatments

Icarus Behavioral Health offers a mix of traditional approaches and holistic treatments. We have a broad range of trained staff members who lead groups, provide counseling or therapy sessions, facilitate recreation activities, offer medication management services as needed, and more. Our staff members are compassionate experts, and they all have unique areas of specialty, which is part of why we have the ability to customize your treatment plan to fit your specific needs.

Therapeutic modalities used in our treatment programs may include but aren’t limited to CBT, dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), motivational enhancement therapy (MET), existential therapy, eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR), and person-centered therapy (PCT).

In addition to the diverse forms of psychotherapy we offer, yoga, meditation, nutrition support, and other additional resources or activities are available at Icarus Behavioral Health. If you want to know whether we offer a specific service or treatment you’re looking for, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.

Get Help for Grief and Loss at Icarus Behavioral Health

Help for Grief and Loss

If you’re looking for a grief rehab program with compassionate staff members and effective treatments, you’re in the right place. Few things cause as much pain as the passing of someone close to you. When facing such a loss, it is imperative that you’re in good hands.

When you contact Icarus Behavioral Health, we can verify your insurance coverage, schedule a tour of our facilities, or answer your treatment questions.

To get in touch with Icarus Behavioral Health, call the phone number on our website today. If we miss your initial call or message, a team member will return it shortly. All calls are confidential, so please reach out for support options today!

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on Grief Rehab Programs

What is the best cure for grief?

In most cases, talk therapy is the first line of treatment for grief that does not resolve independently. Losing family members or others who are an important part of your life is a traumatic event, and grief therapy can help you heal. Talk therapy can take different forms, whether it is CBT or another modality. Seeking complicated grief treatment can be critical in cases where symptoms are severe or prolonged.

Can you be hospitalized for grief?

You can be hospitalized for grief. This most often occurs in instances of complicated grief or severe grief-related symptoms. Hospitalization for grief usually takes the form of inpatient grief rehab. Getting help for complicated grief can help you not only cope with the painful experiences you have been through but will also assist you in learning the skills you need to move forward, connect or reconnect with people in your life, and work on other goals.

What are the risk factors for grief?

No one is immune to grief. When a family member, close friend, romantic partner, or another person in your life passes, it takes time to heal. However, some people are at an increased risk for complicated grief. Having a pre-existing mental illness and other factors, like a traumatic event that led to the passing of a lost loved one, can heighten the likelihood that you’ll experience complicated grief.

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