Outpatient Rehab

Outpatient treatment is substance rehabilitation that doesn’t disrupt your daily life. Recovery is less intense and focuses on managing recovery around a more regular schedule. You will learn how to live drug-free outside of intense supervision.

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Section MenuOutpatient treatment is a drug recovery program that occurs during the day only and may occur outside of a formal treatment facility. Patients do not live at the facility and may continue to go to work and socialize with friends while receiving treatment for addiction. It’s important the patient’s home life is stable enough for them to return home at night.

Outpatient treatment can be used following an inpatient program, by itself or as a way to maintain sobriety for those already in recovery.

Some rehab clinics offer a Partial Hospitalization Program, or PHP, where individuals receive treatment during the day and return home at night. PHPs can be classified as a part of either an outpatient or inpatient program.

Is Outpatient Rehab Right for Me?

The decision about outpatient treatment should be made between you and your clinic.

Keep these factors in mind when making the decision.
Withdrawal symptoms
Some withdrawal symptoms are dangerous, even life-threatening. Addiction to drugs with strong withdrawal effects like opioids and cocaine should only be treated inside of a detox facility. Outpatient treatment is only an option if your withdrawal symptoms are manageable on your own.
Level of addiction
This is hard to determine, but it is an important consideration for patients who want to enter treatment at the outpatient level. The clinic can help you determine what your level of addiction is and which level of treatment is the best choice for you.
Outside support system
You are not supervised by the treatment center staff 24 hours a day, and your time outside of the clinic may be difficult. Outpatient treatment works best when your support system is healthy enough to aid your recovery.
Everyday routine
If your routine is contributing to your drug or alcohol use, then time at an inpatient program likely will be more beneficial than keeping your regular schedule.
Co-occurring condition
Four million Americans suffer from both a drug problem and a mental health issue. Since outpatient programs focus on behavioral therapies and meetings, they aren’t designed to diagnose and treat a co-occurring disorder.
Outpatient treatment tends to be less expensive than inpatient treatment. That’s because you aren’t paying for room, board and medication. If your insurance only covers certain kinds of treatment, or limits rehab costs, outpatient treatment may be your most cost-effective option.
Refresher course
Outpatient programs are great if you completed formal inpatient treatment and are looking to get additional support and information during your recovery process.

Did you know outpatient services can be done online? Learn About Online Rehab

Learn More About Outpatient Rehab Treatment

Outpatient treatment typically includes Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). CBT focuses on the connection among a person’s thoughts, feelings and behaviors. Treatment can help individuals change their thought process and deal with outside forces like stress in a different way. They also can learn to find pleasure in healthier ways.

Laura Clarke of Advanced Recovery Systems compares the types of therapies used during outpatient therapy to the treatments provided during inpatient programming.

What Meeting Schedule Should I Expect?

Your schedule of outpatient care often depends on your personal work and life schedule, and your recovery needs. You may have a series of all-day meetings and therapy, or your treatment may take place in the evenings. Treatment may take place at a rehab facility or elsewhere.

What is the Admissions Process Like?

Rehab centers look for therapist or hospital referrals and consider outpatient admission the same as they would inpatient care. Outpatient admissions may include life evaluations to make sure your life outside of the treatment center is healthy enough for outpatient care.

Outpatient Group sitting and talking at a cafe

How Can I Pay for Treatment?

Private insurance through your job can pay for a number of days of treatment. Check with your insurance provider for coverage and how much rehab costs. Assistance through Medicare and Medicaid also is available, but not all rehab clinics accept it. You can also pay out-of-pocket for treatment either by using savings or by fundraising through family and friends. While it can be costly, treatment could help you create a new life for yourself.

Where Can I Find Treatment?

Most major rehab clinics offer outpatient therapy. Consult your therapist or a rehab clinic’s consultation manager for information on outpatient programs. Find a substance abuse treatment plan that allows you to get the help you need without disrupting the life you live.

Medical Disclaimer: DrugRehab.com aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with a substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider.

Tyler Bohlman
Author, DrugRehab.com
Tyler is a writer and researcher for Drugrehab.com. He has previously written for the construction, business and health industries and holds both a bachelor's and a master's degree from Ball State University.

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