The Difference Between Inpatient and Outpatient Treatment

The difference between inpatient and outpatient treatment

A person who is struggling with addiction may be overwhelmed with treatment options. Understanding the difference between inpatient and outpatient treatment, services and care will help someone seeking out treatment to find the appropriate care that is right for his or her needs.

What Is Inpatient Treatment?

People who participate in inpatient treatment live at a rehabilitation facility with 24-hour around-the-clock care. While a patient is on the road to his or her recovery, he or she will be residing in a supportive and controlled environment with medical professionals, as well as peers who are going through the same addiction recovery journey. The length of a person’s stay at an inpatient program usually varies anywhere from six to 12 months, as each person goes through addiction recovery at a different pace.

Inpatient programs usually emphasize accountability, responsibility and how to live a socially productive life. Most facilities provide both long and short-term inpatient programs that are tailored to a person’s specific needs. While those who are going through addiction recovery will not be residing with their families during inpatient treatment, being a resident at a rehab facility can help a person receive the maximum treatment, services and care that he or she needs because they will constantly be surrounded by the services that the rehab center has to offer.

What Is Outpatient Treatment?

Outpatient treatment helps people who are further along in the stages of their recovery, as well as those with a solid at-home support system they can rely on. Another benefit of outpatient treatment is that it tends to be more flexible than inpatient programs, allowing patients to maintain their responsibilities and relationships with their friends and family.

People who attend outpatient treatments normally live at home and schedule outpatient services during the times that they are available. Outpatient treatment is less time consuming than inpatient treatment. However, the amount of time required from each patient can vary, depending on the program. 

Who Is a Good Candidate for Inpatient Treatment?

Inpatient treatment is especially important for people who are going through their initial detox. It allows the person to be removed from their normal environment so they can focus on examining negative beliefs and destructive behaviors. Inpatient treatment is designed to give them the tools to turn these negative traits into productive and constructive skills that can prepare them to have healthy interactions with their normal environment once treatment ends.

Choosing between different inpatient programs can be difficult, but a person should research their options and identify the program that offers the appropriate type of support for their specific needs. Each person should consider what type of therapies are best, since some may be more effective for them than others. A person might be interested in cognitive behavioral therapy, dialectical behavioral therapy, eye movement desensitization reprocessing therapy or other forms of treatment. Inpatient treatment is often followed by outpatient treatment or an aftercare program that helps the patient adjust to life outside of rehab. Since addiction is a chronic illness, it is important that patients seek further treatment once their inpatient treatment ends.

Who Is a Good Candidate for Outpatient Treatment?

Outpatient programs are good for someone who has a busy schedule or unavoidable responsibilities because it allows the person to schedule treatments or therapies on his or her own time. If a person participates in multiple support groups and has a full-time job or at-home responsibilities, then outpatient treatment may be the best option for him or her. Outpatient treatment also tends to be more affordable. Different types of outpatient treatment will vary in intensity. For instance, day treatments can be equally as intensive and effective as inpatient programs.

A person will want to be careful when choosing a program so that it is specific to his or her needs. Outpatient models often involve individual and group therapy and will help patients with employment, short-term and long-term behavioral goals, developing healthy coping mechanisms and more. Some outpatient programs focus on patients with a dual diagnosis, such as bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, depression or anxiety. A person must enlist themselves in programs that he or she finds supportive and helpful so they will be able to continue to work on his or her addiction recovery in a comfortable and safe space. Ultimately, it is up to the individual to decide what treatment works best for them.

Deciding between inpatient or outpatient treatment is a big step for someone who is struggling with substance abuse. At Shoreline Recovery Center, we provide both outpatient and inpatient treatments, as we are dedicated to providing our patients with the right treatment that will suit their needs. We also specialize in Xanax, heroin, alcohol and marijuana addiction. Our experienced team provides a wide variety of treatment options to help patients during their addiction recovery.

If you or a loved one are struggling with addiction, it is important to determine what type of treatment is best. Each person should think about if a whether a environment would help them focus on their recovery, or if they feel they have a positive support system at home that they don’t want to make this journey without. Ultimately, it is up to the person who is recovering from addiction to make the choice that is right for them. Call us today at (866) 278-8495 to get help and support as you make this life-changing decision.

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