We understand there are a lot of questions prior to making a decision on where to go to treatment. While Monte Nido’s Admissions Specialists can always answer any of your questions, some of the most frequently asked questions and answers are below:
How individualized is the program?
Clients vary in their motivation to overcome an eating disorder, tolerate weight gain, stop intrusive thoughts or alleviate depression. Our program is based on providing individualized care. With a small number of clients and a relatively large staff, we have the ability to address each client’s unique individual needs. Our primary therapists are usually assigned no more than two or three clients at a time. Each client meets with her therapist three times per week as well as individual sessions with the dietitian, medical director, psychiatrist and the clinical director. Each client has an individualized contract with her own personal goals for each week. Clients work out their contract goals in conjunction with the treatment team, and in the weekly contract group.
How long do people usually stay in the different levels of care?
We have a minimum stay of 30 days for residential, but most clients stay somewhere between 2-4 months. A few clients have stayed 6 months or more. When it is time for a client to leave 24 hour care, the client and treatment team work together to establish an aftercare program, which is less structured and more affordable than full 24-hour care. At most of our locations, we offer both a day treatment program and a transitional living residence where the length of stay is flexible.
How many and what kind of staff members do you have in your programs?
All our facilities have a large and varied staff. Our primary therapists provide individual, group and family therapy. Our psychiatrists oversee all psychiatric issues and provide each client with appropriate medications or naturopathic alternatives. Our medical doctors attend to the overall physical health of each client and help resolve any medical issues that arise. We have dietitians who collaborate with each client to develop lifelong eating habits. Our fitness trainers and yoga teachers help establish healthy exercise goals and provide a variety of physical activities. Our chefs provide wholesome, beautifully presented fresh food for meals.
How many people in a room in residential treatment?
Two to three people are in a room in residential treatment.
How do you determine who will share rooms in residential treatment?
When you first arrive you usually go into the room that has just been vacated by the client who discharged. However, there are times when it seems more appropriate to change rooms. There are also times where roommates will not get along and may come to staff to seek a room change. Usually we work on the relationship in order to work things out, but if necessary a room change might be made.
Are bathroom visits supervised in day and residential treatment?
In the beginning, and as deemed necessary, clients are on an observation period after meals and snacks, as this is usually the hardest time for clients.
Are the bathrooms locked in day and residential treatment?
Our bedrooms each have a bathroom that can be locked or unlocked depending on the need of the client and/or the level they have achieved in the program.
Do I have to eat all the food on my plate?
The percentage of your meal you need to complete is worked out between you and our dietitian. Our goal is that prior to leaving our program, clients will have the opportunity to eat according to their own hunger and fullness.
How do you work with vegetarians, individual food preferences and other food issues?
Clients are individual in terms of food fears, likes and dislikes. We are sensitive to each individual’s food issues and provide flexibility in our menus. We offer vegetarian choices and take into account any medically tested and diagnosed food allergies or other dietary needs. We work slowly and empathetically with all food issues. Clients are not forced to eat any particular food, however, we are careful to help each client understand the differences between food preference and eating disorder driven choices. Eventually clients are allowed to shop and cook for themselves.
How do you work with weight gain?
Not all of our clients need to gain weight, but for those that who do we work out an individualized program. We recognize the weight gain process can be difficult physically, and emotionally, and our philosophy is to approach the process slowly, to improve the likelihood of retention in recovery.
How do you figure out how much a person needs to eat?
Meal plan and calorie levels are determined on an individual basis taking into account a variety of factors including both psychological and physical concerns.
How will my treatment prepare me for real life?
We know all too well that clients can be successful in a treatment setting and then relapse after returning to normal living. Our entire program and level system is based on this concern. Progressing through the level system at a Monte Nido program gives each client increasing freedom over her food and exercise so that, upon graduation, she is better prepared to handle real life situations. Experience has shown us that if clients can remain in treatment through the entire program we provide, they will have less chance of relapse and a far greater chance of full recovery.
What is a typical day like in residential treatment?
A typical day begins with breakfast and morning exercise. After taking time to get ready for the day, there is snack and a Primary Therapy Group, followed by lunch. After lunch we have a specialized group, such as Food & Feelings or Cognitive Behavioral. Following afternoon group, clients will have snack, individual therapy sessions, meetings with the clinical director, physician or dietitian. If no sessions are scheduled, clients will work on individual assignments or have free time for reading, art projects, visiting, etc. In the evening, dinner is followed by another specialized group such as Body & Soul or Creativity. Clients are busy with therapy at our facilities; however, free time, organized activities and outings are also important parts of our program and are interspersed throughout the week.
What is the average age of the clients in day or residential treatment?
Monte Nido programs are licensed to accept adolescents and adults depending on location. The age of clients in treatment at any given time varies. Monte Nido also treats males on a day treatment or intensive outpatient basis.
What kinds of recreational activities or outings do you provide in residential treatment?
One goal is to provide a variety of activities that nourish both body and soul. We believe that providing activities for a fuller more soulful life is part of what helps clients diminish their ‘need’ for an eating or exercise disorder. We have scheduled outings 2-3 times per week and special events periodically. Our recreational outings can involve going to an art studio, to the beach, to a museum, to a miniature golf course, or anywhere that seems appropriate. Occasionally we attend special events, like dance performances, concerts and plays.
What transitional or aftercare programs do you offer?
We are conscientious regarding the issue of continuity of treatment and step down levels of care, e.g., day treatment or outpatient treatment. Transitional living and independent living situations can be arranged. We have found this to be enormously beneficial in helping clients practice their recovery skills. All facilities differ in terms of specific aftercare offered in the vicinity. For example, many of our residential treatment centers have an affiliate day treatment program, and outpatient services. At no cost, we offer our ongoing Family/Significant Other Group to all former clients and their significant others. This group serves as an ongoing alumni group for clients in the area or as a ‘recharge’ when needed for those who want to come back to attend. When clients are ready to return home, we assist in the transition back to the referring therapist and treatment team or, if need be, we draw from our extensive referral list both in and outside the United States. Our therapists provide transition sessions to all clients returning home in order to facilitate a smooth return to the outside treatment team.
When are visiting hours for residential treatment?
You may have visitors during any free time when you are not scheduled to be in a meal, snack, or activity. However, we do have times that we suggest are best for visiting and we encourage you to stick to these times if possible.
Would it be possible to speak with former graduates of Monte Nido?
We would be happy to provide phone numbers of graduates as well as family members or significant others who have agreed to discuss their experience at Monte Nido.
What about Electronics: Computers / Phones / Internet Usage?
To ensure clients can get their emails and make phone calls we provide a client computer and phone. All personal computers and cell phones are collected and stored upon admission. Clients will be able to get privileges to use these items as they progress through our level system or if they have a special need. All of the privileges can be requested and if approved will be spelled out on the clients weekly contract. Items such as personal music devices and e-readers may be approved if staff can ensure that the device cannot be used to connect to the Internet. Any stored information such as books must be checked and approved by staff.
It is the policy of Monte Nido & Affiliates to not discriminate in admissions, provision of services, hiring and employment practices on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, religion, age, handicap or disability.