Inpatient vs Outpatient Rehab: Discover The Better Option For You

Last Updated: Sep 20th 2019

Reviewed by Brittany Polansky

Addiction can feel like falling into a pit where the darkness consumes you. When you’re addicted to something, you feel like you have no control over your life. What once felt safe and secure, such as your friends or your home, can spark fear instead.

Addicts try to hide their additions from the people in their lives. They hide their struggle from themselves, denying they have a problem. It only makes it harder to get them into rehab, much less know whether inpatient vs outpatient rehab is right.

Yet, people should always strive to help someone come to terms with their problem and connect them with people who can help. Working with addicts to ensure they get the best treatment for them takes work, but it’s also worth it. Addicts almost always emerge from treatment with a new perspective on life.

It’s just a matter of finding the right kind of treatment. Keep reading below to learn whether inpatient or outpatient treatment is right for you.

Addiction Never Comes From Nowhere

Addiction is never the result of who a person is. No one is ever destined to be an addict. Instead, addiction develops as a way to cope with some internal issue that a person may be struggling with.

This issue can be a memory of something that happened to them a long time ago. It can be the result of unresolved trauma that they’re struggling to overcome. Either way, addiction is a way to self-medicate a deep kind of pain.

To stop an addiction, you need to address the root cause of it. Treating addiction isn’t just about weening someone off a drug and hoping they don’t pick it up again. It’s about working with them through their issues and pulling them out of the mental darkness they may feel stuck in.

You’ve Taken The First Step

Just by reading this article, you’re warming up to the idea that you may have a problem. Even better, you’re doing what you can to find help. You may not be ready to talk to someone in person about possibly addictive behaviors, and that’s okay.

You need to go at your own pace when it comes to recovery. Trying to push through recovery can cause more harm than good. Yet, taking it too slowly may leave you agonizing over the same problems, never making any progress.

As long as you’re committed to recovering from addiction, it will happen. Stay dedicated to yourself and you’ll emerge from the other side a better person — sober and free.

Rehab Helps Put The Past Behind You

Recovering from addiction is never done alone, though. To truly put your problems behind you, you need to share them with people. By sharing your problems, you can get a new perspective on them from the eyes of the people who care about you.

With that new perspective, you can approach them differently. You’ll see how to cope healthily for, perhaps, the first time. Learning how to cope healthily is the turning point in any journey of recovery. Once you learn that, you’re on your way.

Yet, you can only get that knowledge by talking about the issues on your mind with other people. And that’s what rehab is for.

Inpatient Vs Outpatient Rehab: Which Is Right For You?

When you start looking at treatment programs and different recovery methods, it’s easy to get lost in the jargon. Some programs send you a center where you spend your days in an intensive program, surrounded by people undergoing similar things as you. Others may not interfere with your life at all, except for weekly or daily meetings.

Each has advantages and disadvantages, and each work better for some people than others. The biggest difference is whether you start an inpatient or outpatient program. To learn the difference between both, keep reading below.

Inpatient Is Effective, But Also Costly And Time-Consuming

Inpatient treatment programs embody the stereotypical image of addiction recovery. With these programs, addicts sign up to spend around 4 months undergoing a program that will confront them with parts of themselves they’ve tried to ignore. A team of medical professionals cares for you for the whole time.

Inpatient programs also keep addicts together with other addicts, so that they can support each other. Nobody understands the struggle of addiction as well as someone who was addicted, themselves.

As a result of this intensive kind of treatment, people almost always see results. Unfortunately, not everyone can put their lives on hold for months to confront their addiction.

Outpatient Rehab Takes Dedication

For people who can’t go to inpatient treatment centers, yet still want to kick an addiction, there are outpatient programs. When you start an outpatient program you commit to work on yourself, rather than have a trained group of professionals work on you.

Most outpatient programs have a schedule of regular meetings when you will meet and connect with people undergoing the same struggle. You’re expected to attend every meeting and talk with people. The process of confronting your issues is similar to inpatient programs, yet you won’t be constantly monitored to ensure you stick to it.

Instead, you’ll be the only one keeping yourself in check. Most groups use tokens as symbols to keep with you as a reminder that you’re not alone through the process. And even if you’re life isn’t absolutely disrupted, as it would be with an inpatient program, you’re still the only one responsible for making it better.

It Takes Work, But It’s Worth It

It can feel hopeless. Addiction convinces you that you’re alone; it works to isolate you from the people who love you. Yet, no one who is lonely is lost. As long as you understand that you have people who care about you, you will work to keep them in their lives.

The fact that you’re trying to decide between inpatient vs outpatient rehab just means that you care about yourself. You understand that addiction is a problem, and just want the best for you. And for the best, just contact us. We will make sure you kick your addiction and get sober, regardless of the program you pick.

Reviewed for Medical & Clinical Accuracy by Brittany Polansky

Brittany PolanskyBrittany has been working in behavioral health since 2012 and is a Primary Clinician at our facility. She is an LCSW and holds a master’s degree in social work. She has great experience with chemical dependency and co-occurring mental health diagnoses as well as various therapeutic techniques. Brittany is passionate about treating all clients with dignity and respect, and providing a safe environment where clients can begin their healing journey in recovery.