There are many benefits of outpatient addiction treatment for people seeking to combat substance abuse.
Not everyone requires a residential program. Some may have a caregiving role at home that prevents them from committing themselves to a residential treatment program requiring weeks and sometimes months of attendance. Conversely, people who have completed a residential program may need the continued support of aftercare in the form of an intensive outpatient program or IOP as they are also known. Whatever the reasons to reach out for help, there’s every chance there’s a specialist intensive outpatient program near you.
Here, we take a closer look at intensive outpatient program guidelines:
Provides a Continuum of Care
Consistency in the delivery of care in rehab is essential in providing support throughout the process from detox to recovery. Patients are encouraged to develop trust-based relationships with therapists and physicians as part of their treatment so as to enable them to explore their addiction issues with greater clarity. Receiving treatment from the same professionals at the same facility even when a patient is residing at home empowers them to stay on course with treatment and motivates recovery.
Creates a Sober Community
People have been shown to recover better from addiction if they are surrounded by people who understand and support them. When someone has left a residential treatment facility, they may feel anxious about returning to their daily routines. Intensive outpatient care provides them with a new community of like-minded people who understand the issues faced in recovery and are not judgmental.
An outpatient program introduces patients to an important support network and also a different social circle to hang out with. It is always important for someone combating addiction to stay away from enabling people and environments and through outpatient services; they can find new friends and interests that are more likely to support them in sobriety.
Introduction to Diverse Support Groups
Some of the groups that can be found in outpatient addiction treatment include:
- Relapse prevention
- Guided meditation
- Family counseling
- Cognitive behavioral therapy
- Art therapy
- Grief or trauma workshops
Access to Important Resources
Although someone venturing back out into the world after rehab will have learned some valuable relationships and made solid friendships, there may still be additional help they need. Outpatient treatment can introduce people to resources they don’t have. For example, someone who doesn’t have a car or who lives in an area poorly served by public transport can be offered transportation to and from their outpatient sessions.
Outpatient services also provide patients with other resources in terms of nutritional advice, psychotherapy and education on mindfulness practices such as yoga or meditation. With all resources available under one roof, an intensive outpatient program is a good option for someone who needs easy access to all the help that’s available to them.
Keeps Patients Accountable
In many cases of substance use disorder, a person’s behavior has become extremely negative and sometimes aggressive, particularly when challenged on the issue. The fact that they are not able to control their compulsion to use very often leads to them becoming defensive of their behavior as they don’t feel accountable for any damage done to themselves or others.
Because of the nature of outpatient treatment which requires patients to attend sessions at a center while they reside at home, they are accountable to others, making it harder for them to relapse. Staff members, therapists, family and friends who know of a patient’s attendance will all have an expectation of the individual in treatment. This provides a compelling reason for a recovering addict to learn how to be accountable to others once again.
Allows Transition in a Patient’s Own Time
One of the most significant benefits of intensive outpatient treatment for someone who has completed residential rehab is that it allows them to reintegrate to their lives at their own pace. Many people leaving rehab can feel anxious about facing triggers and stressors in their daily lives or they may even feel a certain degree of ‘emptiness’ at the prospect of life without alcohol or drugs.
Because the initial first steps into recovery can be extremely daunting, an intensive outpatient program provides effective support during this vulnerable stage. People do not know how their lives will change after rehab until they find themselves living at home again and outpatient care allows them consistent and continuing support as their needs change.
When someone is recovering from addiction issues, they have to take each day as it comes and overcome each challenge as it arises. There are bound to be situations and circumstances that are stressful but they are less likely to lead to relapse if someone has easy access to support or has a schedule of therapy sessions to attend in an outpatient facility. Whether your or a loved one has attended therapy and are in need of further support after leaving the facility, it is strongly recommended that you locate an intensive outpatient treatment program near you.