What Is an IOP Addiction Treatment Program?

If you\’re currently reviewing your options in drug or alcohol rehab, you may be surprised to discover that there\’s a large variety of treatment types. Although most people understand rehab as taking part on a closed, secure campus, you don\’t necessarily have to choose inpatient treatment. Outpatient treatment gives people the ability to continue going to work, attending school, caring for minor children, and spending time with their loved ones. With outpatient treatment, you\’ll only need to spend a set number of hours on site each day. During this time, you\’ll participate in many of the same therapies, activities, and workshops that are offered in inpatient addiction treatment. However, when you\’re done, you can be on your way. Intensive outpatient programs (IOPs) offer this same level of freedom and flexibility while still providing the rigorous structure and reliable support that people who are high-risk for relapse often need.

A general outpatient program (OP) might require a commitment of just 8 to 12 hours per week. In most OPs, people spend approximately one to three hours per day working with case managers and counselors. Comparatively, an IOP usually requires a weekly commitment of 30 to 35 hours. These programs provide a greater level of support and are often considered a bridge between inpatient rehab and post-treatment support services.

How to Know if an IOP Is Right for You?

Inpatient addiction treatment is often recommended for people with one or more factors that place them at high-risk for relapse. These include:

  • Opioid abuse
  • A history of heavy drug or alcohol abuse
  • Co-occurring disorders
  • Repeated relapse in past recovery attempts

With inpatient rehab, you\’ll spend the entire duration of your treatment on a closed campus. This allows for a totally temptation-free environment. It also separates patients from the triggers and stressors of the outside world. With little to no opportunity to use, people in inpatient treatment can complete rehab absolutely substance-free. More importantly, they have the opportunity to focus entirely on getting well.

You might be better suited for outpatient treatment if you lack any of the above-mentioned risk factors, and if you\’re ready to take a largely self-managed approach to your recovery. People who have only spent a limited amount of time using substances and who aren\’t living with co-occurring disorders such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, or general anxiety disorder among others, are often able to succeed in general outpatient treatment.

However, an intensive outpatient program could be a far better choice if you\’re living with one or more known risk factors but still aren\’t up for the rigors of inpatient rehab. An IOP will provide a similar level of support, sufficient flexibility for handling important responsibilities, and adequate access to treatment professionals when you need timely interventions.

Is Inpatient Treatment Better Than Intensive Outpatient Treatment?

Inpatient treatment that lasts three months or longer has the highest success rates of all available treatment types. However, this does not mean that it\’s the right choice for everyone. Some people flounder in inpatient treatment but succeed after finding the right IOPs. Ultimately, it\’s important to find the perfect treatment type for you. An IOP may be an excellent standalone solution for someone needing drug or alcohol rehab, and it can also be an effective way to follow up inpatient treatment for someone who needs a greater level of continued support.

IOPs often work well for people who don\’t want to spend large amounts of time away from their families, and who are living in stable, temptation-free homes. If everyone in your home is supportive of your recovery, and if you won\’t be exposed to trauma, unnecessary stress, or enabling individuals while living there, enrolling in an IOP might be a good idea. You also have the option of completing an intensive outpatient program while staying in a sober living facility or halfway house. These are both great alternatives for anyone lacking a stable, supportive living environment, but who still wants to go to work or school while in rehab.

What Happens When an IOP Is Done?

Establishing a sustainable lifestyle is an important part of keeping your recovery on track. Rehab counselors work hard to help their clients avoid homelessness, joblessness, legal issues, and financial distress after treatment. If you\’re able to successfully complete rehab while still going to work, receiving job training, or taking other measures to support yourself, you\’ll already be actively preventing some of the most common causes of relapse.

In all rehab types, the goal of addiction recovery isn\’t just becoming sober. It\’s also establishing a plan for maintaining your sobriety over the long-term. Much like you would in an inpatient rehab, you\’ll work with a case manager who will connect you with essential resources, help you develop a needs-specific relapse prevention plan, and assist with goal-setting and general life-planning. By the time that you finish your IOP, you\’ll have all of the skills and tools you need for confronting and overcoming countless real-world challenges without using. If you want to learn more about intensive outpatient programs or if you\’re ready to find an IOP in your area, we can help. Call us today at 833-610-1174.

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