Substance Use Treatment Programs for Older Adults

Caron’s powerful proven addiction treatment is specially designed to accommodate the needs and issues common in older adults.

At a Glance

  • Dedicated units

    offer private rooms in state-of-the-art medical centers.

  • Clinical and medical needs

    determine length of stay.

  • Full-time and on-site treatment teams

    provide medical, psychological, psychiatric, and nursing care.

  • Supportive group therapy

    addresses bereavement, denial, anger, shame, age-related loss, and loneliness.

  • Mobility and medical needs

    are assessed daily.

  • Chronic pain

    is addressed through education, therapy, and medical treatment.

  • Programs for family members

    focus on options for self-care.

Highlights of Caron's Older Adult Programs

Caron’s specialized Older Adult Programs address addiction along with co-occurring conditions commonly seen in older adults. Our programs are adapted to a person’s age and physical, emotional, and spiritual condition, and are effective for early intervention, treatment, and relapse prevention. We use proven behavioral health therapies that preserve dignity, build self-esteem, and develop healthier coping mechanisms.

The programs are located in Caron’s state-of-the-art medical centers on our Pennsylvania and Florida campuses. The centers provide medical services, detox, treatment, programming, residential quarters, dining, and amenities under one roof for the ease and convenience of patients and families.

Our Approach to Treatment

Our programs are adapted to a person’s age and physical, emotional, and spiritual condition, and are effective for early intervention, treatment, and relapse prevention. Throughout treatment, our addiction, medical, and mental health specialists continually reassess and adjust care plans, helping patients build social support networks, gain self-awareness, overcome difficult emotions, such as grief and depression, and restore their sense of meaning and purpose.

The daily schedule is crafted to adhere to each patient’s pace with the inclusion of activities that take into account mobility and possible co-occurring mental health conditions, such as depression, anxiety, and trauma. Significant medical issues—like chronic pain, diabetes, or cardiac problems—are also taken into account in the patient’s individualized treatment plan.

Treatment Components

  • Medically supervised detoxification units on site
  • Chronic pain management
  • Medication assessments to ensure appropriate prescription and dosage
  • Psychological assessments with expanded neurological assessments as clinically indicated (Additional fees may be required at Caron Pennsylvania.)
  • Supportive group therapy addressing bereavement, denial, anger, shame, and age-related loss and loneliness
  • Recovery support meetings, including 12-step programming on site
  • Relapse prevention
  • Spiritual counseling

Note: Unless otherwise indicated, these treatment components are available on both the Florida and Pennsylvania campuses.

Specialized Services

  • Full-time medical staffing 24 hours a day
  • Certified nursing assistants assigned to new patients for 24/7 initial support
  • Optional integrative neurofeedback therapy
  • Safety features such as call bells, pull cords, and grab bars
  • Coordination of off-site medical appointments with transportation provided

Wellness Therapies and Services

  • Art therapy
  • Exercise
  • Meditation
  • Mindfulness
  • Movement therapy
  • Music therapy
  • Physical therapy
  • Salon services (Florida campus)
  • Swimming pool with aquatic therapy (Florida campus)
  • Yoga

Note: Unless otherwise indicated, these services are available on both the Florida and Pennsylvania campuses.

Family Support

  • Education about substance use disorder, mental health disorders, and topics specific to older adults
  • Support and information for family recovery and self care
  • Information on how best to support the loved one in their recovery

Signs and Symptoms of Substance Use Disorder in Older Adults

Because some of the signs of substance abuse mirror the signs of aging, it can be difficult to recognize if there is an issue or its extent. Medications that many older people take may mask or mimic substance abuse symptoms. The fact that older people generally also drink or take drugs at home alone also makes it difficult to know if they need treatment for substance use disorder.

Due to the normal aging process, drugs and alcohol affect every part of the body differently because it cannot metabolize the same way it had. Here are some signs to evaluate:

  • Agitation
  • Altered liver function
  • Anemia
  • Anxiety
  • Changes in eating habits, particularly not eating as much
  • Changes in mental abilities
  • Decline in personal cleanliness
  • Depression
  • Drinking in spite of warning labels on prescription drugs
  • Fatigue or weakness
  • Hostility/violence
  • Incontinence
  • Increased confusion
  • Irritability
  • Loss of friends or not staying in regular touch
  • Loss of interest in favorite activities
  • Marital problems
  • Memory lapses or impairment
  • Mood swings
  • Not being oriented to date, time, and place
  • Panic attacks
  • Problems sleeping and/or sleeping more during the day
  • Repeated falls
  • Slurred speech
  • Solitary or secretive drinking
  • Unable to complete activities of daily living
  • Unexplained burns/bruises

Continuing Care


Let’s talk about your specific needs.

Take the next step.

Start a conversation.

A man and a woman leaning on each other

Take the next step:

Start a conversation

Start with an online form

Contact us