Inpatient vs Outpatient Substance Abuse Treatment: Which Is Right for You?

Is an inpatient or outpatient substance abuse treatment program right for you? We’re explaining the key considerations to help you decide.

You’ve reached that first significant milestone in your recovery. You know you need treatment. So now the next challenge faces you. What type of treatment will best help you on your journey?

In this article, we’ll help you explore the advantages of inpatient and outpatient care.

Is a controlled, residential environment the right place to manage your recovery? Or do you need the flexibility of an outpatient substance abuse treatment facility instead so you can stick to other important life commitments?

You can use this guide to help make a decision about which one is going to be best for your recovery. Read on to learn more.

What Is Inpatient Rehab Treatment?

Inpatient treatment means residential care. You stay overnight in a specialized facility. Depending on your treatment plan, the period can vary between one and three months and sometimes more.

Being an inpatient means you have a controlled environment and 24/7 care. It’s immersive and one that’s often used to manage intensive treatment. 

Inpatient facilities help remove you from external triggers or distractions. Instead, you’ll get a daily routine that’s structured and comprehensive, geared to your recovery. 

What Is Outpatient Rehab Treatment?

Outpatient treatment helps you balance your treatment with your home life. You visit a clinic for therapy sessions but aren’t a resident.

When you choose this type of substance abuse clinic, you’ll often have scheduled sessions. Depending on your treatment plan, that could be once a month, a week, or more frequently.

An outpatient clinic helps those with responsibilities they can’t put on hold, like jobs, childcare, or education.

Care Duration and Time Commitment

When deciding between inpatient and outpatient treatment, it’s important to consider practical factors. For example, you should examine what time you can commit to a drug treatment clinic.

Inpatient programs are 24/7 and will often run for at least 30 days. That intensive experience can shorten the timeframe for your recovery. However, it’s not for everyone.

For many people, putting a halt on their daily life for a month isn’t realistic. In this case, an outpatient program could be a better option.

Yet you must remember that these also have time commitments, and you’ll need to stick to 100% attendance for each session to ensure the best chance of recovery.

So, you must look at your weekly calendar and see how to slot therapy into your commitments so it becomes an immovable fixture. 

Inpatient Vs. Outpatient: Living Arrangements

An immersive inpatient environment provides a unique living arrangement. You shut away all external cues, and that can be helpful for some who want to avoid triggers.

In this setting, you’ll experience a community feeling with other residents. It can often mean sharing stories and supporting each other’s recovery.

With an outpatient clinic, your everyday life will feel much the same. You’ll still live at home and face the same environment.

It means you aren’t choosing between your recovery and responsibilities. And you may feel safer remaining in familiar surroundings as you navigate your treatment.

The Cost Comparison

When you choose an inpatient facility, you need to consider the wrap-around cost of residential care on top of your treatment. It includes boarding, meals, and other services you might need during your stay.

Outpatient is a more affordable option. Though it’s often for an extended period, your expenses will be focused solely on your treatment plan.

When weighing up the costs, make sure you factor in your insurance coverage. You must ensure you have the proper financial support and don’t overstretch yourself. That could cause unnecessary stress during your recovery.

Treatment Options

The more intense nature of inpatient services means you may get a different blend of therapies and types of rehab.

However, that will depend on the clinic, so always check beforehand. Some will offer a combination of individual and group counseling. A few may also provide additional therapies like meditation.

Outpatient clinics can also offer a range of treatments, and you may be surprised at some of the choices available.

Again, it’s always worthwhile checking the clinic’s services before you book. What will be notable about the therapy is that it will be arranged around your sessions, which might be once or twice a week.

In both cases, the clinics will aim to provide a personalized treatment plan to help support you as best as possible in your recovery.

Treatment Flexibility

The structure of inpatient treatment may suit those who want to step back and let a team oversee their recovery, relaxing in an environment that provides holistic treatment like tai chi. It means few distractions or chances to relapse.

Yet it comes at a cost. Your daily routine is in someone else’s hands. It won’t provide flexibility during rehab.

Flexibility is something that many patients need, and the autonomy of outpatient care could be a better fit in those circumstances.

It means you can take control of your recovery and manage it in a way that fits your everyday responsibilities. In a way, that could aid in your post-therapy support as it’s less of a transition.

Inpatient and Outpatient Abuse Treatment: The Community Aspect

Recovery can gain strength when you have the foundation of a supportive community. It’s not something to overlook during your treatment. Always think about the family and friends you have and how they will aid your recovery.

If you don’t have a close support network, you may want to lean on a community within an alcohol abuse center instead.

That’s something that you can do whether an inpatient or outpatient, though with the former, you’ll have considerably more contact.

When looking at potential clinics, consider group therapy options if you feel that community support will play a significant role in your recovery. Being able to speak to others in a similar situation is invaluable. 

Outpatient Substance Abuse Treatment: Taking the Next Step

Whether inpatient or outpatient care is best will depend on the individual. There is no correct answer, but the choice will be about personal preferences and lifestyle.

If an outpatient substance abuse treatment is right for your life, it’s time to take the next steps.

Contact our professionals at Visalia Recovery Center so that we can guide you on the next phase of your rehab at an addiction treatment center in Visalia.
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