What to Bring to Rehab

What to Bring to Rehab

Packing the Essentials for a Treatment Center Stay

After making the important decision to seek inpatient treatment at a rehab facility, the rest of the process can be smooth sailing. One of the most important things you can do to make your stay easier is to pack accordingly. It can be frustrating to arrive on day one only to find out that your personal items are not permitted. Know what to bring to rehab so that you are prepared from the very beginning.

Icarus Behavioral Health in Nevada offers addiction treatment with comprehensive individualized care tailored to your needs. Our rehab center is quite flexible on what you can bring with you, but there are a few essentials that we encourage all of our clients to bring.

Here is an essential packing list that will help you decide what to bring to rehab.

Appropriate Clothing

Appropriate Clothing

The first and most obvious thing that you will need to pack for inpatient rehab is your clothes. You won’t be wearing scrubs or hospital gowns during your stay with us. Instead, you can bring your own comfortable clothing that will help you to feel more like yourself.

Pack basic clothing items like shirts, pants, and shorts to accommodate all weather conditions. Don’t forget to pack plenty of socks and undergarments. Make sure to pack enough to get you through about a week before you need to use the laundry facilities.

Other items that you may want to include on your packing checklist include:

  • Pajamas
  • Bathrobes
  • Belts
  • Coat or jacket
  • An appropriate bathing suit (one-piece swimsuits for women and swimming trunks for men)

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Inappropriate Clothing Types During Residential Treatment

There are a few restrictions on what types of clothes you can bring to a rehab facility though. Revealing clothing is prohibited as it can distract other clients from focusing on their treatment. This can include shorts that are too short or low-cut shirts for women.

You should also refrain from bringing clothing that has alcohol or drug references that could trigger others.

Some treatment facilities may also have fun, special occasions that you can participate in such as family nights. You may want to pack a few outfits that are a little bit nicer for these occasions. Otherwise, you can simply pack what makes you feel the most comfortable such as athletic wear.

Shoes and the Right Footwear

Shoes and the Right Footwear

In addition to your clothing, shoes deserve their own category when it comes to packing for rehab facilities. A single pair of shoes is unlikely to equip you for all of the activities that you will take part in during your stay at Icarus Behavioral Health. We recommend that you bring several types of shoes to rehab with you.

First, you will want to pack comfortable shoes for your daily wear around the facility. These could be slip-ons, sneakers, or whatever makes you feel the most at ease.

You will also want to bring sneakers or shoes suited to physical activities for any recreational activities that you participate in. You could allow your shoes to pull double-duty if you would ordinarily wear sneakers, but many people prefer to pack slip-ons for their everyday shoes.

A Comfortable Pair of Casual Shoes

Last but not least, you should bring a pair of flip-flops to be worn around the shower areas and bathrooms.

Slippers are an optional item that many people like to bring to wear around their room. It can take some of the chills out of the floor and make you feel more comfortable. Most rehab facilities will recommend that you bring a pair of slippers if you have one.

Toiletries: Consider the Following Items


To keep yourself comfortable, you will want to bring at least one month’s worth of toiletries. Think about what you use on a daily basis and make a mental note to buy enough to get you through an inpatient rehab stay. Otherwise, family members may need to bring you more.

This includes the basics like:

  • Shampoo and conditioner
  • Body wash or soap
  • Toothpaste and toothbrush
  • Deodorant
  • Shaving cream (some places may allow you to pack disposable or electric razors)
  • Feminine hygiene products
  • Comb or brush
  • Nail clippers (allowed in most cases, for clients without a self-harm history)

You will also need to make sure that you pack other toiletries that might be more unique to your needs. For example, you might want hair-styling products that are alcohol-free. They also should not be in aerosol containers, so you will need to pack pump hairspray instead of aerosol.

Makeup is optional, but many people prefer to feel like they are dressing up as they usually would for their sessions or for outings and support group meetings.

Consider packing sunscreen and lotion as well if you will be spending time outside at your treatment center.

Personal Items for a Rehab Center Stay

Personal Items for a Rehab Center Stay

This is often the hardest category for people to consider packing. What should you bring to rehab beyond the essentials for your daily routine? Packing a few personal items can help you to feel more comfortable and to enjoy your downtime between sessions.

For example, you may want to pack reading materials that pertain to your recovery. Another option is to bring a notebook that you can use to journal about what you are learning and experiencing.

Other items that you may want to bring to rehab with you include:

  • Pictures of your friends and family that inspire you to stay sober
  • A small amount of cash for the vending machines
  • A credit or debit card for any expenses incurred during your stay
  • A driver’s license or other form of identification
  • Health insurance cards
  • A collection of names, addresses, and phone numbers for people you may want to contact during your stay
  • Stamps and envelopes to mail letters to those you care about

Some people also like to pack jewelry that they wear every day, such as a wedding ring. While we advise that you do not pack valuable items for your stay in our facility, a wedding ring and other simple jewelry are permitted.

What Not to Bring to a Rehab Facility

What Not to Bring to a Rehab Facility

The sheer volume of things you might want to bring to rehab can feel overwhelming. After all, you are packing for an extended stay that could last for thirty days or longer. You don’t want to burden family members with bringing you items that you forgot again and again.

Still, there are some things that you should avoid bringing with you to prevent them from being confiscated.

Here is a detailed list of some of the items that should be avoided when packing for a rehab center:

  • Drugs, drug paraphernalia, alcohol, illicit drugs, or prescription medication that is not prescribed to you
  • Sharp objects like scissors or knives (disposable razors may be permissible)
  • Weapons of any kind
  • Food or snacks (all meals and snacks will be provided by the rehab or the vending machines)
  • Toiletries with alcohol content such as mouthwash, perfume, or nail polish and remover
  • Aerosol cans (including hairspray)
  • Vaping supplies or electronic cigarettes
  • Electronics including video games, DVD players, and televisions
  • Cleaning supplies
  • Nail polish remover
  • Lighters and things that can be lit such as candles
  • Certain types of games such as playing cards

Of course, this also includes opened bottles of medications without a prescription and revealing clothing, as mentioned in earlier sections.

It may seem restrictive that you can’t bring items like games and activities, but these are often provided by the rehab centers during activity time. Preventing distractions from your treatment is the first concern for your treatment team, and games and electronics can hinder your progress.

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Over-the-Counter Medications and Addiction Treatment

Some rehab centers will allow you to bring over-the-counter medications along with you. These can include pain relievers like ibuprofen or Tylenol. You may also want to pack antacids and other medications that you take regularly for common ailments like allergies or upset stomachs.

Keep in mind that over-the-counter medications should be in unopened bottles to prevent tampering with the contents of the medication.

If you have prescription medications, especially those with the potential for drug abuse (even if that is not an issue for you) they should be brought in their original bottles. This ensures that the team can administer them in the appropriate way so that your sobriety is not jeopardized by improper medication usage.

Pack for Success at Our Welcoming Recovery Center!

Pack for Success at Our Welcoming Recovery Center

You know that you have an extended stay in our rehab center coming up, so you need to make sure to pack everything that will make you comfortable. From your preferred clothing and shoes to the toiletries that make you feel like yourself, you need to be prepared. Refrain from packing items on the restricted list, as these will be confiscated upon your arrival (but kept safely in storage for you if an item if a forbidden item is brought along accidentally).

At Icarus Behavioral Health in Nevada, we try to provide everything you need to be comfortable during your stay with us. These suggestions will get you started with your packing list. If you have a question about whether you can bring a specific item to your stay, be sure to contact us prior to packing.

If you feel ready to tackle your substance use issues head-on, reach out to us today to see how we can help you with a comprehensive treatment plan.

All calls are confidential, so reach out to get support for you or your loved one today!

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