Inpatient Rehab vs. IOP: Which One is Right for Me?

inpatient rehab vs. IOP

Inpatient Rehab vs. IOP: Which One is Right for Me?

Addiction treatment does not come in a one-size-fits-all approach. For treatment to be effective, it must be custom-tailored to meet the unique needs of each individual. One way treatment programs help meet the needs of various individuals is by offering multiple levels of care.

If you have taken the first step by admitting that you have a problem and need help, you’ll work with a therapist or doctor to decide which level of care is right for you. Two types of treatment programs you may be able to choose from are inpatient rehab and IOP.

What Is Inpatient Rehab Like?

Inpatient treatment, also known as residential treatment, is the highest level of care in addiction treatment. It is the most intensive and structured type of program available. During inpatient rehab, you are required to live at the treatment facility. You are not allowed to come and go as you please. There are behavioral health technicians on-site around-the-clock to provide supervision and support.

Inpatient drug rehab is a full-time commitment. People usually are unable to work, go to school, or care for their families during residential treatment. Instead, they are completely dedicated to their treatment program. Many inpatient programs also include medically-assisted detox as part of their program.

Residential treatment is intended for people with moderate to severe substance use disorders. If you have been addicted for a long time, are highly susceptible to relapse, or need medical care, inpatient rehab may be right for you. It can also benefit people who are diagnosed with co-occurring mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression. The highly structured, regulated, and supervised environment can help you completely revamp your life to one that is sober and fulfilling.

Inpatient rehab usually lasts between 30 and 90 days. Days are spent engaging in group and individual therapies. However, since you stay at the facility 24/7, most inpatient programs offer a range of additional services and amenities that can benefit your healing journey, such as yoga, meditation, 12-Step meetings, and more.

Benefits of Inpatient Drug and Alcohol Rehab

Residential treatment brings you into a safe and sober environment where you have endless access to in-person support. There are many benefits of going to inpatient, including:

  • On-site medical and psychiatric care
  • Around-the-clock support
  • Drug-and-alcohol-free housing
  • Peer support
  • Structured daily schedules

While inpatient rehab is thought to provide the most support and, therefore, the best outcomes, not everyone has the need to commit to such an intensive program.[1] Another more flexible option is IOP.

What is Intensive Outpatient Programming (IOP)?

Intensive outpatient programming, commonly referred to as IOP, offers many of the same advantages of inpatient rehab, but without requiring you to sacrifice your personal life. This level of care only requires you to be at the treatment facility for your scheduled therapy sessions. IOP is best for people who are willing to commit to a structured treatment program but don’t require around-the-clock care and support.

IOPs typically meet 3-4 times each week. Sessions may last 2-3 hours each. In total, you should expect to spend 6-12 hours a week participating in group and individual therapy. Similar to inpatient rehab, most IOPs last between 30 and 90 days. Many addiction treatment centers offer flexible scheduling, so you can choose between a daytime or evening IOP based on your schedule.

Medical detox is usually not included in IOP, so people who need detox should complete a higher level of care, such as inpatient rehab, or go to detox before starting IOP. IOP is also a great option for people who have mild to moderate addictions, those who are living in a sober living community, or those who cannot attend a higher level of care due to work, school, or family obligations.

Benefits of IOP

Although IOP is not as intensive as inpatient rehab is, it is still a very effective treatment approach. Some studies even suggest IOP is just as effective as inpatient rehab because it can effectively help patients develop healthy coping skills, prevent relapse, and establish psychosocial supports.[2]

Other benefits of IOP include:

  • Lower costs than inpatient rehab
  • Flexible scheduling
  • Being able to work
  • Being able to spend time with your family
  • Peer support

IOP can also serve as a transitional level of care between inpatient rehab and aftercare. Since adjusting to real life after residential treatment can be difficult, IOPs can come in handy.

“Florida Recovery Group offers day and evening IOP groups five days a week, this allows a lot of flexibility for our client’s daily schedule. Our groups are a diverse mix that ranges from old-school no-nonsense facilitators to the most educated experts in the addiction field. Our facilitators always keep the group sessions fresh, constantly changing up the topics and goals, allowing the clients to stay engaged and motivated.”

Find Out Whether Inpatient Rehab or IOP is Right For You

The best way to determine which treatment program is right for you is to speak with a substance abuse counselor and complete an assessment. A counselor can evaluate your situation, determine your treatment needs, and help you make an educated decision pertaining to your care.

If you or a loved one are struggling with addiction and ready to commit to a life of recovery, we’re here to help. Call now to speak with one of our dedicated admissions coordinators.