What to Expect 

What to Expect During Inpatient Residential Rehab at Desert Winds Recovery Center


Your days in residential treatment at Desert Winds will be structured and you will be able to benefit from the comfort and stability of being in a 24-hour facility.


After you begin drug or alcohol detox or residential rehab, a typical day in treatment will start with breakfast, and a support group meeting where you as each other peers check in with yourself and everyone else. After that, you will attend a clinical group with our licensed therapist and a nursing education group with our director of nursing, where you will learn about the neurological and biological impact of addiction on your body and mind. This is often followed by experiential groups, like music therapy, art therapy, and mindfulness. These groups are essential for helping with neuroplasticity and are a good “pause” between the clinical and process groups, in which you will focus on your progress to date and your goals. Lunch, a recreational therapy group, and some personal time will follow. The evening will include a final clinical group, dinner, on- or off-site 12-step meetings, and a wrap-up gratitude meeting. Between groups, individual and family therapy sessions are provided at least 2x a week. There is also time for utilizing the pool, outdoor activities, watching TV, and most often requested, time to smoke. Smoking cigarettes and e-cigarettes is allowed as long as you are not required to be in a group or individual therapy session. Weekends are a little lighter, with a few less clinical groups, and a few more fun sober outings (ex: going bowling, hiking in Mount Charleston, going to the movies, etc).




Throughout the week, you will also receive some homework from your therapist, tailored for your individual treatment goals. You’ll be given a journal you’ll use during your time at Desert Winds. You’ll complete any assignments independently, but in some cases, you may be encouraged to share your work during individual or group therapy.


Our curriculum will help you to gain certain skills, such as recognizing triggers, managing stress, and reciting helpful self-talk/affirmations, that are necessary for a successful life in recovery.




Your first 24 hours at Desert Winds is all about getting a good overall picture of your needs. Our intake department is made up of registered nurses who will perform your nursing and medical health assessment when you arrive. Please let us know ahead of time of any dietary restrictions you have (ex: vegetarian, gluten-free, food allergies) so that our head chef can purchase foods and meal plan accordingly for your stay.


By the end of your first 48 hours at Desert Winds, you will have received a psychological intake assessment by your therapist, and a psychiatric evaluation as well from our psychiatric nurse practitioners.


Many clients will begin their time in treatment in medical detox, during which they may also begin participating in group and individual sessions.

What to Bring to Rehab


We advise bringing the following items with you when you come to stay at Desert Winds:


• 10 days’ worth of casual, comfortable clothing appropriate for current weather


• Workout and hiking clothing


• Comfortable shoes


• Personal hygiene items (all of which must be alcohol-free)


• Driver license/Government issued ID (Mandatory)


• Insurance cards (Mandatory)


• Appropriate reading material.


• 30-day supply of the medications you need. Please include a list with the name, dose, frequency and prescriber or pharmacy contact information for any current medications.


• Up to $200 petty cash (no more than $200 cash)


• Enough cigarettes (w/ unopened seals) for the entirety of your stay or vape (must be empty of all juice at time of arrival) w/ juice for the entirety of your stay


• Clothing must not include sexually suggestive, violent or political messages or drug references


• Sleepwear (Do not bring lingerie, revealing undergarments)


• Bathing suit (no G-strings, speedos, or otherwise highly revealing bathing suit)


• Hygiene essentials including:


○ Toothpaste (w/ unopened seal)


○ Shampoo/conditioner (w/ unopened seal)


○ Deodorant


○ Toothbrush/Dental Floss (floss only, without picks)


○ Brush/Comb


○ Feminine hygiene products for the month


○ Razor (no straight edge razors) (these will be kept in a bin and checked out)


○ Shaving cream


○ Blow-dryer, Curling Iron, Hair Straightener


Other helpful items can include:


○ Appropriate family photographs


○ Writing materials/stamps/envelopes/coloring items/arts and crafts (kept in common area at all times with no sharp items)


• Laptop, iPad, OR Tablet (only 1 device other than phone allowed). This includes Apple Watches. (Please note that there is an initial 5-day electronic black-out period. After this, clients are allowed phone calls on facility phone for two more days, and if clinical approves after 7 days- electronics are allowed daily during scheduled programming break times. Outside of the windows for electronic use, the electronics are stored by staff until checked out)


• Preferred snacks or soda (as staff will not purchase soda).  Items will be marked and stored appropriately for client’s use.

What Not to Bring


What Types of Grooming Products are Allowed?

Clients often like to have their own shampoos, conditioners, soaps, etc., and we allow any alcohol-free grooming products and products that cannot be used as weapons (cannot list alcohol in the first 3 ingredients).


Are Laundry Facilities Available?

Yes! We have washing machines and laundry is typically done once a week, but can be done more often for clients that do not have as many articles of clothing with them.


• Any alcohol, or items that are typically used for inhaling
• Medications containing alcohol
• Drugs and/or drug paraphernalia
• Clothing w/ inappropriate messages
• Sexually explicit/revealing clothing
• Weapons
• Televisions
• Gang related materials
• Candles
• Any unlabeled medications, liquids, or solutions
• Any glass containers