So, you have made a decision to receive help for your alcohol or drug problem and you have a way to pay for it. Great. Now, you are wondering what are my options. Good news — you have many different choices.
The outpatient program allows you to live at home while you attend a treatment program. The hours differ, but typically they are less than ten hours a week. Some programs are in the day and some have services offered in the evening and/or weekends. This option gives you a lot of flexibility. You will have the freedom to take care of your work and family obligations. However, you are not going to be in an environment that protects you from bad influences. Also, you are not going to be medically monitored. So if you think you will have withdrawal symptoms, this is not a wise choice. This is a good fit for folks who need some anonymity, because a long absence from work, will be difficult to explain. It is also a good choice for people with many responsibilities that can not be ignored.
Intensive outpatient treatment is similar, but it requires more hours at the treatment center. Typically, you will attend treatment a few time a week, while living at home. It is about 20 hours a week. This is a good choice for someone who needs some flexibility (to accommodate work and family life) but also requires some medical supervision. Sometimes people will use this treatment as a transition from an inpatient program.
Day treatment (sometimes called partial hospitalization) is similar to the other outpatient options, but it is more hours. Typically you go to the treatment center 4-8 hours a day. This is a good fit if you have complicated medical conditions. It is a bigger commitment, so you will need to make arrangements to accommodate the increased hours.
Residential treatment programs require you to stay at a facility full-time. This is a very effective option will the highest success rate. Typically, you stay a minimum of 28 days — up to nine months. This may seem extreme, but alcoholism and addiction are complicated diseases that effects your brain, and your body. Staying at a secure facility is a safe place for a recovering person. If you need detoxification services, they will be included in this type of program. This type of recovery will teach you an entirely new regimen that will support your new sober lifestyle. This would be my first choice.
Here are some points about treatment that I got from the drugfree.org site:
• No single treatment is appropriate for everyone.
• Treatment needs to be readily available.
• Effective treatment attends to multiple needs of the individual, not just his or her drug abuse.
• Remaining in treatment for an adequate period of time is critical.
• Counseling—individual and/or group—and other behavioral therapies are the most commonly used forms of drug abuse treatment.
• Medications are an important element of treatment for many patients, especially when combined with counseling and other behavioral therapies.
• An individual’s treatment and services plan must be assessed continually and modified as necessary to ensure that it meets his or her changing needs.
• Many drug–addicted individuals also have other mental disorders.
• Medically assisted detoxification is only the first stage of addiction treatment and by itself does little to change long–term drug abuse.
• Treatment does not need to be voluntary to be effective.
• Drug use during treatment must be monitored continuously, as lapses during treatment do occur.
• Treatment programs should assess patients for the presence of HIV/AIDS, hepatitis B and C, tuberculosis, and other infectious diseases as well as provide targeted risk–reduction counseling to help patients modify or change behaviors that place them at risk of contracting or spreading infectious diseases.
*There are many no-cost and low cost options for folks who want to get clean and sober. Please see my resources page. You can also check out the article on payment options for treatment.
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