There are many different forms of addiction treatment including programs which require patients to reside in a facility or inpatient or outpatient drug rehab that allows them to remain at home. There are different reasons why outpatient alcohol treatment may be more appropriate for individuals including the following:
● They have a caregiving role that prevents them from committing to a residential program
● They have completed a residential program and require additional support on returning home
● It would be detrimental to others for the person to be absent for a period of time, such as them owning a business or having a position of responsibility at work
● They are a student in the middle of studies
These are just some of the reasons people choose outpatient drug rehab although it is usually recommended for people who have a mild or less severe addiction than others.
How Does Outpatient Alcohol Treatment Work in Aftercare?
A good aftercare program provides recovering addicts with vital support when they leave residential rehab and return to their home environment. Towards the end of their program, they will have worked with therapists to devise a recovery strategy that’s unique to them, which acts as a basis for aftercare for as long as they need the support to maintain sobriety.
Outpatient drug rehab is generally flexible, allowing people to organize therapy sessions and counseling meetings when it is convenient for them. This means they don’t have to publicize the fact that they’re just out of outpatient alcohol rehab and they can build a new life away from the prying eyes of others. Aftercare counseling is often extended to the families of recovering addicts which is particularly helpful in rebuilding closer personal relationships that have been damaged by addiction.
Aftercare is essentially a tool which recovering addicts can lean on as they learn how to adapt to their lives without substances. Some may not need the same level of support as others which is why most aftercare programs run for as long as the patient requires some extra help.
Is Outpatient Rehab Effective?
The majority of outpatient alcohol treatment programs require patients to spend a few hours each day at a facility or in a group setting. Many outpatient services have an element of drug testing which is sometimes required by court order, although generally used to monitor progress and encourage accountability in the patient.
Generally, outpatient care can be extremely effective when individuals are brought together into a close community of peers. This is achieved in group therapy and setting up support networks and important alliances can be formed that boost motivation for outpatients to remain drug or alcohol-free. Research shows that people are more likely to sustain sobriety if they feel they are fully supported and this can be achieved when an outpatient gets involved in their community.
Outpatient care is particularly effective in helping recovering addicts respond better to triggers for substance abuse in their daily lives. Many programs offer holistic treatments such as massage therapy, yoga, and meditation which individuals can use tools to reduce stress levels, making relapse less likely. Essentially outpatient services offer the same therapies and treatments as residential facilities, often providing even more options to recovering addicts.
Types of Outpatient Drug Rehab
Outpatient drug rehab programs are most appropriate for those not requiring 24/7 medical supervision or people who need to remain at home or in the workplace. There are two different types of outpatient treatment program known as intensive outpatient programs and partial hospitalization programs:
Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP)
An IOP generally offers around several sessions during the week that last around 3 hours each time. The IOP usually starts with more sessions which progressively reduce over time and are designed specifically for people who require the structure of an inpatient program without the time commitment. To be effective, it is essential for the home environment to be conducive to the individual receiving addiction treatment. People living in enabling environments where others are openly using substances are unlikely to get much benefit from outpatient treatment.
Partial Hospitalization Programs (PHP)
PHPs are only slightly less intensive than residential rehab and offer a highly structured scheduled of sessions for between 4-6 hours a day for up to 5 days a week. This kind of intensive outpatient care is best for individuals who may still need to be supervised during the day, allowing them to return home at night. It is always important to have families and friends on board with a PHP patient’s treatment as they are able to provide a stable and supportive environment for their recovery.
Depending on the individual’s circumstances and the nature of their addiction, outpatient care is likely to be recommended at some point in their journey to recovery. In the case of aftercare, an outpatient program provides the continuum of care that’s important to individuals who have very specific needs and requirements. Naturally, it is vital that outpatients remain engaged with treatment in order to achieve the best outcomes but generally, outpatient alcohol rehab has been shown to successfully facilitate recovery in many cases.