Understanding the Rehab Process

This page has been put together for you to read before arriving at DARA, so that you can to begin your internal journey before you even get here! We hope it answers some of your questions. But if you still have any questions, big or small, don’t hesitate to contact us

Our Mission

At DARA, the team provides high quality, cost effective treatment to those recovering from or suffering from substance based or behavioural addictions. In order to accomplish this mission, we provide a variety of psychological, behavioral, general health, and alternative therapy interventions that enable our clients to fully recover.

Who is DARA for?

DARA is for those people seeking a more discreet and comprehensive program than can be found elsewhere on the planet. DARA boasts a tropical location and top-class facilities that match or exceed many other luxury rehab centers in world, but at a fraction of the price. The program is evidence-based, and our team is skilled and flexible enough to tailor the program to best fit of each individual client. All clients who come to DARA should be willing to participate in both group and individual therapeutic activities. Clients will also be encouraged to look at the cause and root of their dependence, along with addressing problematic behaviors and behavioral patterns they may be experiencing. This is how we help build enduring recoveries, again and again.

The Treatment Programs

At DARA we offer four, six, eight, and twelve week structured programs, using a range of treatment approaches to complement the CBT core approach.

What is Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT)?

CBT has a strong level of empirical support for the treatment of substance abuse, alcoholism and the whole gambit of behavioural addictions. It is a short-term, focused approach to help substance dependent individuals become abstinent.

It is a way of talking about:

  • How you think about yourself, the world and other people
  • How what you do affects your thoughts and feeling

CBT can help you to change how you think (“Cognitive”) and what you do (“Behavior”). These changes can help you to feel better. Unlike some of the other talking treatments, it focuses more on the “here and now” problems and difficulties. Instead of focusing on the causes of your distress or symptoms in the past, it looks for ways to improve your state of mind now.

It has been found to be helpful in:

  • Anxiety,
  • Depression,
  • Substance abuse,
  • Agoraphobia and other phobias,
  • Social phobia,
  • Eating disorders,
  • Obsessive compulsive disorder,
  • Post traumatic stress disorder,
  • Schizophrenia,
  • And too many other things to fully list!

How does it work?

CBT focuses on helping clients to a) RECOGNIZE the situations in which they are most likely to use drugs or alcohol; b) AVOID these situations when appropriate; and c) COPE more effectively with a range of problems and problematic behaviors associated with substance abuse. CBT can help you to make sense of overwhelming problems by breaking them down into smaller parts. This makes it easier to see how they are connected and how they affect you. These parts are:

  • A Situation – a problem, event or difficult situation
    From this can follow:
  • Thoughts
  • Emotions
  • Physical feelings
  • Actions

Each of these areas can affect the others. How you think about a problem can affect how you feel physically and emotionally. It can also alter what you do about it. What does the CBT program involve?

When you are new to treatment, you may be nervous and apprehensive, at this stage and during detox (if required),

  • The therapist will check that you can benefit from this style of therapy, and you will check that you feel comfortable with it.
  • You will decide what you want to deal with in the short, medium and long term.
  • The therapist will work with you to agree to a care plan

The core group

The CBT program at DARA will be done with a group of people. Regarding the group therapy:

  • You will usually meet with a therapist and group 5 days a week for the program sessions. Each group session will last 60 minutes.
  • The therapist will also ask you questions about your life and background. Although CBT concentrates on the here and now, at times you may need to talk about the past to understand how it is affecting you now.
  • The program lasts for as long as you stay, on a rolling basis. The group will adapt to its members needs, each focusing on different areas of your life and substance abuse.

The Work

  • With the therapist and group, you break each problem down into its separate parts. To help this process, your therapist will ask you to keep a diary. This will help you to identify your individual patterns of thoughts, emotions, bodily feelings and actions.
  • Together you will look at your thoughts, feelings and behaviors to figure out if they are helpful, realistic and rational. If they aren’t, you will be shown how to more regularly feel and behave along these healthier lines.
  • It’s easy to talk about doing something, much harder to actually do it. So, after you have identified what you can change, you will be recommended “homework”. But don’t worry, this isn’t high school! The homework tasks are simple and effective evidence based techniques that will be able to practice straight away to improve how you experience everyday life. Depending on the situation, you might start to:
    • Question a self-critical or upsetting thought and replace it with a positive (and more realistic) one that you have developed in CBT
    • Recognize that you are about to do something that will make you feel worse and, instead, do something more helpful.
    • Shift your focus from considering whether negative thoughts are true, to considering whether negative thoughts are helpful

At each meeting you discuss how you’ve got on since the last session. Your group can help with suggestions if any of the tasks seem too hard or don’t seem to be working for you.

The strength of CBT is that you can continue to practice and develop your skills even after the sessions have finished. This makes it less likely that your symptoms or problems will return.

How effective is CBT?

  • It is the most effective treatment for conditions where anxiety, anger or depression is the main problem
  • It is the most effective psychological treatment for moderate and severe depression
  • It is as effective as antidepressants for many types of depression
  • It is the most effective treatment for drug and alcohol abuse

Know that:

  • If you are feeling low and are having difficulty concentrating, it can be hard, at first, to get the hang of CBT – or, indeed, any counseling or psychotherapy.
  • This may make you feel disappointed or overwhelmed. A good therapist will pace your sessions so you can cope with the work you are trying to do
  • It can sometimes be difficult to talk about feelings of depression, anxiety, shame or anger

Your Therapist will bring you through the above experience, guiding you to decisions you make for yourself and ensuring you are supported.

For some summary videos about CBT and how it can change your life simply click on the links below to watch our 3 part series
Part one – What is CBT?
Part two – Catching the ‘ANTS’ or Automatic Negative thoughts
Part three – How CBT can help in addiction


Your time at DARA will be much quicker than you realize and much more intense- but in a good, healthy, life changing way!!!

The CBT program works really well alongside the health and relaxation facilities you will experience at DARA. For those of us in the business, we know that DARA is a unique and special place. We also know more importantly that it is a place that is an effective option for you, and we believe passionately that in terms of standards, DARA compares with, and exceeds, the more expensive rehabs you may have heard about.

On your way to Thailand remember the following:

  • It is not an expectation you arrive sober, but remember you must get through customs on your own!!
  • LOOK for the board with your name at the Airport.
  • You’ll be fine!

What to Bring

  • Flip flops
  • Flat shoes
  • Trainers/gym shoes/running shoes
  • Mountaineering shoes for jungle trekking (decent cross trainers will work also)
  • Swimsuit (2 would be better)
  • Gym clothes
  • Light, loose clothing (laundry is done for you daily; you don’t need 4 weeks worth)
  • Sunglasses
  • Hat
  • Small rucksack/bag for day trips
  • Toiletries (shampoo and soap are supplied)
  • Camera (optional)
  • Wireless laptop if you wish to use the internet in your room
  • Clothing for massages and towels for the swimming pool are supplied


We arrange excursions for you every Sunday. These are included in the price. They are a fantastic addition to the program and include (but are not limited to) Tree top high wire adventures, beach visits, Thai cooking classes, Jungle Treks, Temple visits, restaurant trips…

Learn more about DARA’s world-class drug and alcohol treatment. Contact one of our therapists today.
+66 8 7140 7788