Simply put, inpatient addiction treatment is an drug rehab program where you stay at the center for the duration of your treatment and outpatient drug rehab is when you have to travel to a facility for your addiction treatment program. There are different types of inpatient and outpatient substance abuse treatment, so talking with the facilities you are considering and understanding the specifics of their programs is important.
Outpatient Rehab for Drug & Alcohol Recovery
Outpatient drug and alcohol rehab is when you either live at home, in a sober living house, or a halfway house, and regularly attend treatment meetings and programs. Depending on the severity of your addiction, you may only attend treatment programs for a few hours per week or you may enter a partial hospitalization program (PHP) requiring between 30 and 60 hours every week, dedicated to programming, meetings, and therapy.
Intensive outpatient programs (IOPs) are an intensive treatment option designed to minimize the need for PHP programs. IOPs typically require a significant amount of time dedicated to programming per week, approximately 25-30 hours, but are less intensive than a PHP program.
Inpatient Rehab for Drug & Alcohol Recovery
When you hear the term “inpatient rehab”, you are likely thinking of a treatment program where you are able to live at the treatment facility. Technically, inpatient rehab is when a person with an addiction is hospitalized for a number of days because there is a concern of causing self-harm. This type of treatment allows the person to detox while getting treatment & therapy for a likely co-occurring disorder.
Furthermore, detox is a type of inpatient treatment that is solely focused on managing drug or alcohol withdrawal symptoms.
The type of program mentioned earlier, where you live at a facility throughout the duration of a treatment program, is a residential substance abuse treatment program. The terms residential and inpatient treatment are often used interchangeably even though they are actually different. Depending on the specific circumstances, long-term, full-time residential treatment may be the best thing for a recovering addict, or it may be completely unrealistic. Addicts who have a history of relapse or who simply have not been successful with outpatient treatment despite multiple attempts are ideal candidates.
Benefits of Residential Treatment
- The client can focus on their recovery without any outside distractions.
- Removes the client from triggers or temptations that their home environment may present.
- Provides 24/7 support and care.
- Can be offered on a short-term or long-term basis.
Why Choose an Outpatient Program
Removing an addict from any triggers and offering 24/7 support sounds amazing. So why not enroll everyone with a drug or alcohol addiction into a full-time residential program?
Well, there are a number of reasons why residential treatment is not always the best choice.
For one, 24/7 treatment is a costly endeavor. Not many addicts have the money to pay for this type of treatment and it is the goal of insurance companies to pay as little as possible to keep you healthy. Residential treatment might not be fully covered by your insurance, even if you have a good plan.
Residential treatment also does not work well when the admittee has responsibilities such as a job or family that relies on them. For these people, dropping everything for 30-90 days simply isn’t realistic. Being able to go to work or pick the kids up from school is preferable for all parties involved, as long as it does not interfere with recovery. This brings me to the last reason:
The ultimate goal of any drug rehab program is to get people sober and integrated within society in a healthy, productive way. Ideally, sobriety can be achieved and maintained without the addicted person being removed from their existing life. Additionally, the more societal involvement that is maintained, the easier it may be for the person in recovery to resume their daily life without relapsing.