Inpatient vs Outpatient Rehab: How to Choose What’s Best for You

inpatient vs outpatient

Acknowledging that you need rehab is never an easy thing to come to terms with. But, deciding to go to rehab is only the first choice you need to make in order to turn your life around. You then have to research what kind of rehab is best for you and make arrangements to get all the addiction treatment you need.

Rehab isn’t just the 12 steps. It’s a complete lifestyle transformation that can occur through many different approaches and environments, such as inpatient or outpatient rehab. These are the two main kinds of treatment to consider.

The following is an overview of each recovery method to help you decide between going to inpatient vs outpatient rehab.

What Is Inpatient Rehab?

Inpatient rehab is when you literally “go to rehab.” This form of treatment requires addicts to live on-site in a rehabilitation facility away from daily distractions and bad influences. Your whole life basically stops and is centered around recovery and healing during this kind of treatment.

The Basics

Most inpatient rehab centers will take patients in for a period of anywhere from 3 weeks to 6 months, sometimes longer. Throughout the duration of their stay/treatment, an addict is given a daily schedule and strict rules to follow.

The schedule shows them how to fill their days with things like meditation and exercise for personal enjoyment rather than drug use. Of course, there are also set times to meet with professional staff members for therapy and other medical treatment. These are focused on addiction recovery, but they help patients work through things like abuse, loss, and related trauma, too.

Some inpatient programs even have career-related support on site to help recovering addicts prepare for a steady life after addiction. These facilities offer things like skills training and interview preparations to best set their patients up for success.

Inpatient programs do not allow patients to leave until their recovery is complete. However, depending on the facility, patients can sometimes have friends and family visit.

The Pros and Cons

The main benefit of inpatient rehab is the 24/7 support it provides to an addict. It’s a lot easier to focus on recovery when the resources to do it are all around you.

Plus, inpatient programs are a home for multiple people who struggle with the same thing. They make addicts feel understood and welcomed, not judged or ashamed. This is a powerful shift that is capable of creating incredible results.

The cons of inpatient rehab can be hard to swallow at first, but they’re worth it in the long-run. An addict basically has to leave their home and completely change their ways all at once.

They may go for weeks without seeing their friends and family, and they may have to travel a long distance to check into the rehabilitation facility in the first place. Not to mention, such addiction support is more expensive than outpatient rehab and it requires time off from work and school.

What Is Outpatient Rehab?

Maybe it sounds appealing to you to get away and start a new life with inpatient rehab. The thing is, you have to be prepared to face your old ways when you return from your recovery stay, which is another challenge of going the inpatient rehab route.

Outpatient rehab helps you blend the familiar and the new every step of the way. It lets you keep in touch with the best parts of your current life – like your supportive relationships and your work – while learning how to let go of the bad – like addiction and the troubles it brings you.

The Basics

Outpatient rehab does allow you to stay at home, but it requires much more effort on your end. You have to be committed to the program from the get-go and learn how to make do with the higher room for error.

However, it is more affordable than inpatient treatment and it can still create the results you’re looking for if you’re willing to put the work in. Outpatient rehab means you still work/go to school and carry on other aspects of your daily life, without using drugs of course. It establishes a routine for you to seek the treatment you need without putting your entire life on pause.

The treatment can last anywhere from 3 months to a year or longer.

The Pros and Cons

As nice as it may be to sleep in your own bed and not have to leave your friends/family, you also have to quickly learn how to avoid distractions and temptations. It sounds great to not disrupt your life at first until you realize how easy it is to fall back into your old ways with outpatient treatment.

Still, there are some noteworthy benefits of this recovery approach. Being close to the supportive people in your life can help improve your chances of not relapsing. Plus, outpatient rehab works great if you have a mild condition where a bit of support during the detox process goes a long way.

At the end of the day, the pros and cons of each treatment are worth considering carefully before you dive into rehab. You can click to read more about inpatient and outpatient treatment before making your decision.

It’s Time to Choose Between Inpatient vs. Outpatient Rehab

While it’s smart to do your research on inpatient vs. outpatient rehab, at some point, you have to make a decision. The more time you spend thinking about your options, the less time you’re investing in actually getting better.

When in doubt, always remember that if one option doesn’t work you do have the other to fall back on. You’d just need someone to hold you accountable and get you the help you need in the event of a relapse.

For more insights and advice on overcoming addiction, click here.

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