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If I Go To Detox, Can I Just Go to an Intensive Outpatient Program Afterwards?

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Getting through detox is the first step in the right direction to a new life in recovery. For some people, inpatient rehab is the next destination, but for others, inpatient rehab is infeasible due to employment, cost, family, etc. Intensive outpatient program are becoming more known about and respected by mental health professionals. If you recently completed detox and are looking for psychological help for your addiction, an intensive outpatient program is a viable next step.

Benefits of Intensive Outpatient (IOP) Programs?


Since IOP does not come with the same costs associated with an inpatient program, the program is typically more affordable. Health insurance companies will offer more options and coverage for IOP programs because they are more minimal than many inpatient programs. Keep in mind the length that you will be in an IOP program because after a certain amount of time, the cost may be the same as or exceed the cost of an inpatient program.


IOP programs are the best when it comes to flexible scheduling. Many treatment centers that offer IOP programs host various sessions throughout the day to accommodate different lifestyle schedules. You can attend treatment during the day or evening.

Real World Application

Many mental health professionals are growing to disdain inpatient treatment and lean more towards outpatient treatment because inpatient treatment supposedly hinders many individuals from learning how to be sober in the real world. When you are in an IOP program, you are dealing with all of the stress and triggers that exist on the outside world. You will need to stay sober regardless of whether you are having a good day or a bad day. Inpatient programs are not identical microcosms of the real world because they do not come with the elements of the real world. When you are in IOP program, you are applying the recovery principles in your real-world affairs right away.

Family Recovery

Addictions brews pain and hostility in families. IOP allows families to heal together from the effects of addiction. While inpatient rehab hosts family-designated days, they do not allow the family to witness the changes. Living with the recovering individuals helps the family heal together as a unit and adjust to the changes that recovery comes with.

The Ability to Continue Working

Many people’s primary concern about inpatient treatment is keeping their job. While many laws and acts are in place to protect people who go away to addiction treatment, some employees may not fall under the protection of them due to not working full-time or the size of the company that they work for. Under the Family Medical leave Act, employers are not required to pay employees who leave under that act. IOP allows people to recover without fear of losing their job or income.

Types of Outpatient Treatment Programs

The interesting aspect about outpatient treatment is that it does not come in one size. Outpatient programs vary in the frequency that they meet and the intensity of their treatment format. Partial hospitalization is one type of outpatient program. You would be in treatment on a full-time basis; therefore, a job or school may be difficult to squeeze into your schedule. Intensive outpatient has been around a little longer and provides the most flexibility for those who work or go to school full-time because it only meets on a part-time schedule. Many people are familiar with meeting with a therapist once a week. Simple outpatient treatment is like visiting a therapist once a week because it only meets once a week for a short period of time.

Choosing the right program for you in contingent on the severity of your addiction and schedule needs. If you are only at the early stages of developing an addiction (e.g. using alcohol or drugs to deal with problems), you may be alright with simple outpatient treatment to learn how to cope with the problems you are dealing with without alcohol or drugs. If you are more progressed in your addiction, which is most likely the case if you needed detox, intensive outpatient may be sufficient. If you are at the severe point of your addiction (e.g. using several times a day and overdosing frequently), you may need partial-hospitalization or even inpatient treatment. Your needs are the most important factor when determining which program is right for you. You will not be any use in school or work if you are not well.

What Intensive Outpatient Treatment is Like

Group sessions encompass most of the IOP programs. Unlike meetings that you may have already gone to in your community, the group sessions in intensive outpatient will most likely not be based on steps and spirituality. Instead, the sessions will be facilitated by a licensed counselor and be based on evidence-based therapeutic techniques. Some of the sessions will consist of discussing a topic, but other sessions will consist of activities (e.g. art, music, drama, etc.) to teach you how to socialize, relax, and have fun in recovery. Other sessions will be intended to teach you about the disease of addiction to help you learn how to properly recover from it.

If you feel that it is necessary, you can request to do one-on-one sessions. One-on-one sessions are especially helpful in helping you tackle the underlying cause of your addiction. Your addictive substance is not your problem; most likely, an internal brokenness is your problem and your using is merely the symptom. Over half of individuals who suffer from addiction also have a co-occurring disorder. Keep in mind the possibility that you may even have a co-occurring disorder (e.g. depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, etc.), and you will need to be individually assessed to determine that and receive the proper treatment.

Just Believe Recovery Center in Carbondale, Pennsylvania offers detox, residential treatment, and partial-hospitalization. We are one of the best treatment centers in the Northeastern region of the United States. If you are interested in one of our programs, call us today at 888-380-0342

Just Believe Recovery Carbondale

Just Believe Recovery is a fully licensed, Joint Commission accredited, comprehensive drug and alcohol treatment center located in Carbondale, Pennsylvania

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