No two people are the same, so why would their addiction recovery be?

A new addiction rehab center in La Plata, Maryland, creates a holistic treatment plan unique to each of its patients.

“What I need from treatment might be different from you,” said Marcus Smith, executive director of Alpas Wellness.

The team at Alpas focuses on teaching life skills, such as creating safety and healthy boundaries in relationships that patients have. Smith talked with WTOP about the treatment approach of the center, which opened in fall 2023, for our 2024 Get on Top of Your Health series.

“You may be very adept in creating healthy relationships, but you may struggle with safeguards. So, we won’t have you going to groups where you are getting information that doesn’t apply to you. We want you to attend more of the safeguard groups. Then you can know exactly what to do if you are triggered,” Smith said. “If healthy relationships are what you struggle with, we’re going to tailor your curriculum, and what we are offering, to healthy relationships.”

The program is crafted for each patient and offers medication services for withdrawal, depression and anxiety. Interventions take on a multidisciplinary approach. Alpas offers both residential stays and detox services.

“We understand that mental health and substance abuse all come together, so we treat both,” Smith said.

The 108-bed facility in La Plata, Maryland, is modern, bright, and has a fitness area, where a dedicated team works to treat the mind and the body.

“We have a phenomenal, wonderful staff that is comprised of very experienced therapists and a clinical director who has worked in multiple areas of treatment,” Smith said. “We have a licensed, clinical art therapist on our clinical team. We have a family nurse practitioner and a psychiatric nurse practitioner, fantastic RNs, LPNs, case manager to treat whatever your need is.”

The clinical programming is what sets Alpas apart from other substance abuse treatment centers, Smith said, likening it to a college setting where students take required core classes but can also choose elective classes based on their interests and challenges.

Offering new techniques for recovery

Alpas Wellness offers a multidisciplinary approach to treatment, from biomedical to therapy-based tools and holistic interventions.

“From the resident’s rooms to the cafeteria, everything was designed to take away the stigmatization of treatment. We don’t want you to feel like you’re in a treatment center. We want you to feel like you are in a luxury facility,” Smith said.

Need to decompress? How does 30-minutes of guided meditation sound?

Alpas provides two rooms that offer both patients and staff a place to enrich their holistic experience, in an effort to feel calmer and more relaxed.

“The colors, there’s aromatherapy, there’s music, there’s dim lighting, there’s a television where you can watch things that are very scenic. Not a lot of facilities have a place where staff can go throughout the day to decompress,” he said.

Patients and staff can schedule the relaxation rooms and take up to 30 minutes inside. The rooms were constructed in partnership with the University of Pennsylvania, which is studying the benefits of this intervention, by measuring the user’s heart rate through a finger sensor, both before entering and after exiting the rooms.

“The staff really cares about the work that we do and the people that we serve,” Smith said.

The philosophy is to “help patients develop the skills needed to navigate life.”

Covering the cost of recovery

In-patient recovery and mental health treatment can be expensive.

“We ask for a minimum of 30 days,” but patients can stay longer, Executive Director Marcus Smith said. Alpas also offers a 45-day and a 60-day program.

Alpas Wellness works with all major insurance companies and is considered in-network with Medicaid. Private pay is also offered.

For more information, visit, and discover additional tips and tactics to get on top of your health on WTOP.

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