If you or a loved one has recently decided to seek substance abuse treatment, congratulations, you have made an important first step. As you research your next steps, you will find that two branches of treatment options exist. There are inpatient centers, where the recovering addict will reside for a period of 1-3 months usually and receive intensive treatment during his or her stay. Then there are ‘outpatient’ options, where the recovering addict stays at home and is still able to attend school or work while undergoing treatment. While there are pros and cons to both options, we strongly advocate for you to choose an addiction treatment center for the following reasons.
The initial phase of an addiction treatment program is the detox phase, which can be extremely physically and emotionally demanding due to withdrawal symptoms. In severe cases of alcohol addiction, death may even occur due to the withdrawal symptoms. It is important for the recovering addict to have supervision and support during this difficult time to avoid any serious complications. A drug treatment center will have trained and experienced staff available 24/7 to recognize when medical assistance is needed. Some centers will even have medical professionals on site to help you or your loved one get through any emergency situations
A chance to leave your current situation
One of the main reasons people choose an outpatient treatment program over an addiction treatment center is to be able to continue their main occupation and to stay with their family and friends. However, this can actually be a huge impediment to recovery! Without taking the time to step away from your current living situation, you may not be able to see if something is not right for you, and therefore contributing to your addiction. An inpatient treatment option will allow you to step away, breath, and re-evaluate your current situation in life. You may realize that a different path than the one you are currently on will better facilitate sober and healthy living.
Negative influences and triggers cannot be avoided as easily during outpatient treatment as they can be avoided in an inpatient treatment center. If your current environment is toxic, you will have to work on recovery while still dealing with the stressors produced by that same environment. Additionally, you will be exposed triggers outside of the home. It is impossible to tailor the real world around one individual’s recovery, but it is possible to tailor a closed community, the inpatient treatment center, around addiction recovery.
You will have an opportunity to be free of your daily worries, including work and responsibilities in the home so that you can focus completely on recovery. You will be free of life’s distractions and worries for the duration of your stay. By immersing yourself into an addiction recovery program, you will be able to leave with a fresh outlook and new skills that will sustain you throughout the lifelong journey of recovery.
An inpatient treatment center will have a much more comprehensive level of supervision; this means that relapse during treatment is far less likely. In a treatment center, you are not permitted to come and go freely. This may sound intimidating, but most recovering addicts are thankful for this protection despite the temporary loss of freedom. The strong urge to seek out drugs or alcohol is a feature of addiction that everyone is working together to eliminate. In an outpatient program, a momentary lapse in motivation that leads to just one stop at the liquor store, for example, will impede recovery and create more complications.
After reading about the strengths of an inpatient program, we hope you make the choice to seek treatment at an addiction recovery center. It will give you the best chances to succeed at your goals and build a new life that is sustainable without drugs or alcohol.