What should you expect as an inpatient or outpatient?

Finding and building the right treatment plan for you

There are many different types of rehabilitation facilities. Some specialise in helping patients with a specific drug addiction while others offer a broader range of substance use services. What is key is understanding what you need to have a successful recovery.

There are a lot of decisions that need to be made in relation to getting treatment. Firstly you and your family need decide on which facility is best suited to your needs. Then once you have selected and been accepted into a program it is good to know the inpatient and outpatient services available to you and what they include.

Inpatient treatment is the ideal option for those looking to get away from their current temptations and focus 100% on sobriety with no distractions. 

Inpatient drug rehab offers 24-hour-a-day care that allows you to focus solely on recovering from your addiction and your new-found sobriety. Inpatient treatment often includes at least:

  • Supervised detox
  • Administration of medication, if appropriate and required
  • Group and individual therapy
  • Family Therapy

Programs do vary and may include a number of other features ranging from family therapy and life skills training to yoga, exercise, meditation, art/music therapy and nature/beach walks.

Types of Inpatient Rehab

The most common types of inpatient recovery programs include:

  • Residential: These are live-in programs where you stay for the duration of treatment. You attend individual and group therapy sessions, receive medical care and engage in other activities with residents.
  • Luxury: Luxury programs offer many of the same services as residential. But they include other amenities and treatments such as massage therapy, swimming, horseback riding, fine dining and private accommodations. They may also be located in desirable settings such as beaches or mountains.

Benefits of Inpatient Treatment

Inpatient treatment programs often require you to live at the facility full-time for a fixed period of time – typically between 30 days and 90 days. While some may see staying in an inpatient program for an extended amount of time as a drawback, in terms of recovery, it can be a huge benefit. Inpatient treatment:

  • Allows you to get away from your normal environment, which is likely rife with the temptation to use, and focus on your sobriety without distraction
  • Puts you in a healthy environment with addiction treatment professionals and others who are focusing on recovery
  • Provides ongoing skills training and education.

Outpatient rehab programs allow you to continue to live at home during the drug or alcohol rehabilitation.

Outpatient rehab generally costs less than inpatient treatment, and it may be more suitable for those who are simply unable to take extended absences from work or personal obligations. It should be noted however, if the person is unable to achieve the desired goals with outpatient therapy, it is better to tackle the problem with inpatient sooner rather than later to avoid further damage.

Before choosing a program, consider the type of outpatient treatment that will work best and ask some questions about the program – including how much it costs, what kind of treatment it offers, and importantly where it’s located.

Types of Outpatient Treatment

There are many outpatient rehab treatment options to choose from depending on your level of addiction and personal needs.

Intensive outpatient: These programs are similar to inpatient residential programs with respect to service and effectiveness. The major focus is relapse prevention. Intensive outpatient programs usually meet at least 3 days a week for 2-4 hours a day or more. These programs are often scheduled around work or school to accommodate daily schedules.

Partial hospitalisation: This treatment is specifically meant for people who require ongoing medical monitoring but have a stable living situation. Partial hospitalisation treatment programs usually meet at the hospital for 3-5 days a week for at least 4-6 hours per day.

Therapy and counselling: These treatments are usually combined with other treatment methods or as follow-up support after inpatient rehabilitation. Therapy and counselling can help you identify the root cause of your drug use, repair relationships and learn healthier coping skills. Treatments include self-help programs like Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous (following a 12-step model), behavioural therapy, group or individual therapy and family counselling.

Reasons to Choose an Outpatient Facility

  • Your addiction isn’t as severe: If you’re in the early stages of an addiction or your addiction isn’t severe, outpatient rehab may provide the necessary support required for your recovery
  • You’re using it as continuing care: Outpatient rehabilitation is normally recommended after you’ve been treated at an inpatient facility. It’s an effective way to maintain the long-term effects of recovery and prevent relapse
  • You need support of family and friends: Many recovering from drug or alcohol addiction are more effective with regular support from family and friends
  • You can’t commit to inpatient care: If your professional or personal situation doesn’t allow you to take an extended leave of absence, outpatient rehabilitation may be a better fit for your lifestyle. Programs are scheduled around work and school to accommodate daily commitment
  • You can’t afford inpatient: Outpatient rehab programs are generally less expensive than inpatient programs, since you’re not paying for room or board. They can be a great option to get help without the financial stress