Outpatient rehab treatment: Who should attend?

Outpatient rehab can work for most anyone. And some people can thrive in an outpatient setting. More here about this type of treatment for addiction…with a section at the end for your questions.

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Outpatient rehab treatment can suit most anyone. In fact, there are those who significantly benefit from outpatient centers… and thrive.

Don’t have the time or money to devote to residential (inpatient) rehab? Maybe you need to keep working or take care of others at home? If this is the case for you, learn more about outpatient rehab treatment here. Then, we invite your questions or comments about outpatient

Who needs outpatient rehab treatment?

Anyone who has a problem with drugs or alcohol can benefit from outpatient rehab treatment. However, participants should meet a few basic requirements:

1. Have transportation to and from the outpatient rehab center.
2. Have high motivation to complete the program.
3. Have a support system of positive social and family influence ready to support during hard times.

Outpatient rehab is especially helpful for people who have career or family responsibilities that must be met. Additionally, people who qualify for outpatient rehab treatment should meet a few diagnostic criteria for drug addiction, abuse, or dependence issues.  So how do you know if someone has a drug or alcohol problem?

Signs that you need rehab

The following signs can give you some insight into who needs outpatient rehab treatment.  You may need outpatient treatment for addiction if you:

a) Are physically dependent and/or experience withdrawal symptoms when you don’t do drugs or drink

b) Are preoccupied with or make excuses for your drug or alcohol use

c) Are unable to stop using drugs on your own

d) Cannot stop drinking or drugging even though you know it’s destructive

e) Experience regular mood swings or violent behavior

f) Notice that your drug or alcohol use is causing family, health, legal, or financial problems

g) Have tried to stop drinking or using drugs in the past (but failed)

Going to outpatient rehab treatment

What can you expect when going to outpatient rehab treatment? And, how long do outpatient rehab programs last? Unlike inpatient rehab, outpatient clinics do not require full time residence away from home. Instead, you are free to continue living at home and going to work. Most outpatient rehabs have a range of services which require from 6-20 hours (or more) per week. Ultimately, a successful outpatient rehab treatment program will include a combination of these three elements:

  1. Individual therapy
  2. Group therapy
  3. Support group attendance

First, you will be required to travel to an outpatient rehab treatment facility to participate in individual therapy sessions. Outpatient treatment typically involves multiple psychotherapeutic sessions per week; 1-3 times per week with more intensive counseling at the beginning which then tapers over time.

When going to outpatient rehab treatment, you will also be encouraged to attend group therapy sessions. Groups help you in many ways and are often process-based, which means that no two groups are the same. Groups are often the foundation of an outpatient rehab program, and can include educational sessions, theme-based talking, and/or role play.

Family therapy may also be a part of an outpatient program. This type of therapy aims to help family members better understand addiction and help families repair shattered bonds. While some people may not want to involve family, others can benefit greatly from the participation of a spouse, partner, parent(s) or children during therapy. Family therapy often addresses roles, behaviors, and the dynamics of the family…all of which need to change in order to promote the health OF EVERY MEMBER.

Support group attendance in 12-step or self-help groups is also recommended during outpatient rehab treatment. Support groups help complement the therapeutic process and help you build a network of friends who are going through similar issues.

Reasons to go to outpatient rehab treatment

If you’re still not quite sure if you should go to and outpatient clinic, consider the fact that there are more reasons to go than not to go. To give you a few reasons to go to outpatient rehab treatment, we’ve put together a little list for you.

  • It’s more affordable than inpatient treatment.
  • You can be most productive, with targeted therapeutic modalities.
  • You’ll learn to cope with your problems without turning to alcohol or drugs.
  • You’ll still be able to go to work and attend to your other responsibilities.
  • Your health can improve without drugs and alcohol.
  • Your loved ones can regain their love for and trust in you.

Still not quite sure about outpatient rehab treatment? Then we urge you to speak to a qualified addiction counselor. After all, you have very little to lose, and so much to gain when you consider treatment.

Who does addiction affect?

Nearly everyone associated with an addict is affected by their drug use, starting with the addicts themselves. Drug and alcohol abuse addiction often cause a number of physical health problems, as well as mental and emotional problems. Using drugs and alcohol will also often result in legal, financial, and family problems.

Family members are also closely affected by drug and alcohol addiction. Needless to say, it’s typically very heartbreaking to watch loved ones struggle when addiction is present in the home. They often feel helpless, frustrated, and angry at the addict. Family members need to learn new behaviors themselves to set boundaries and to stop enabling behaviors.

Drug and alcohol addiction can also have a huge impact on a community as well. Addicts can put other individuals in their community in danger because of their behavior, for example. With this many people affected by drug and alcohol addiction, it’s really no surprise that everyone benefits from outpatient rehab treatment. It is particularly effective for individuals with less severe drug and alcohol addictions. They get the benefit of overcoming addiction and living a healthier life, and their families will find it easier to live with their loved ones when they’re sober.

Outpatient rehab treatment questions

Do you still have questions about outpatient rehab treatment?  We can do our best to help. Please ask your questions about treatment in the comments section below and we’ll do our best to respond to you personally and promptly.

Reference Sources: Medline Plus: Alcohol use disorder
State of Kentucky: Signs of Alcoholism
NIAAA: Alcohol effects on the body
USDA: Guide on alcohol use
About the author
Lee Weber is a published author, medical writer, and woman in long-term recovery from addiction. Her latest book, The Definitive Guide to Addiction Interventions is set to reach university bookstores in early 2019.
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