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What is the Difference Between Inpatient and Outpatient Treatment?

What is the Difference Between Inpatient and Outpatient Treatment?

If you or someone you love has struggled with addiction, but now you are ready to get help, you might be wondering about the difference between inpatient and outpatient treatment. Different terms associated with levels of treatment include partial hospitalization, outpatient, intensive outpatient, residential, and inpatient, but what do those all mean for your recovery process?


What are the Levels of Treatment?

Recovery from substance abuse is medically viewed as a Continuum of Care. This Continuum of Care breaks down the levels of treatment into inpatient and outpatient therapy, with a few subdivisions.


From one program to the next, the treatment settings and philosophy might vary depending on the level of care because certain aspects of treatment are tailored to any co-occurring mental health disorders you have or the type of substances with which you struggle. The idea is to move you through this continuum successfully, but everyone starts at a different level.


What is Outpatient Treatment?

Outpatient treatment is any treatment where you can reside at home and transition back into sober society. Outpatient treatment is often recommended after you have undergone medically supervised detoxification and an inpatient program. However, some people get help before they reach the point in their addiction where they cannot function and require medical supervision. In these cases, outpatient treatment might be where you start on that Continuum of Care.


With outpatient vs inpatient therapy, the biggest delineator is not requiring intensive supervision or medication. If you can return home and live in a safe space with people who support your decision to get sober and are able to travel back and forth to a treatment center, then you will likely qualify for this type of program.


You continue to build on your self-care repertoire. With an outpatient program, you work hard to solidify your abstinence, improve your emotional functioning, and address other problem areas like co-occurring mental health disorders or unresolved childhood trauma. Outpatient care can last anywhere from a few months through a year or longer. During this stage, you find the proper medication for things like depression. You find a broad social network of sober individuals who will participate in sober activities. You practice your relapse prevention skills.


What is Inpatient Treatment?

Inpatient treatment is where you need to be under medical supervision. The initial stages of inpatient treatment include things like partial hospitalization or medically supervised detox. This helps you rid your body of any remaining compounds under medical supervision. Doing so in a safe and structured medical environment gives you a significantly higher chance of getting through your withdrawal symptoms without a relapse.


After that, your inpatient treatment will include you remaining at the rehab facility for a designated length of time. During that time, you live at the facility. You spend your entire day in a structured schedule attending things like group therapy, individual therapy, anger management, yoga, nutritional counseling, and any other range of evidence-based practices and holistic treatments provided by the facility.


With an inpatient program, you work hard on understanding addiction, figuring out what led to your addiction, maintaining a sober social network, participating in support groups, remaining in a drug-free home, completing goals within your treatment plan, and working to prevent a relapse.


What is the Difference Between Inpatient and Outpatient Treatment?

Outpatient vs. inpatient therapy programs are different in a few key ways. When you look at inpatient and outpatient therapy, the most noticeable difference is the location:

  • For an inpatient program, you reside at the rehab facility, and for an outpatient program, you live at home but return to the rehab facility during the day. 


The next difference between inpatient and outpatient treatment lies in the timeframe:

  • An inpatient program runs 30-days, 60-days, or 90-days, while an outpatient program can be a few weeks through a few months, or even years if your facility offers long-term aftercare like Dallas Detox. 


Other differences include the goals and activities for both programs:

  • With inpatient treatment, the goals focus on detoxification, learning relapse prevention strategies, remaining sober, and resolving underlying medical situations that have contributed to addiction. Similarly, outpatient therapy takes this one step further. It helps you practice the relapse prevention strategies and maintain your sobriety by participating in group programs and developing a sober support network.


How to Find Addiction Treatment Near Me

After learning about the difference between inpatient and outpatient treatment, you can speak with a professional at Dallas Detox and find out which program is best for your situation. At our facility, we specialize in providing customized treatment plans that integrate the right level of therapy and holistic care to give you the necessary relapse prevention skills. We also emphasize long-term aftercare, knowing that the road to recovery doesn’t end when you leave a rehab facility. By working with you for the rest of your life, we can ensure that you continue to meet your goals by getting the counseling you need, focusing on addiction education, continuing assessments for any necessary intervention, and maintaining a sober social support network. 

Let Dallas Detox help you, with the best addiction treatment center in Texas.

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