Pros and Cons of Outpatient Addiction Recovery

Outpatient treatment is one of the longest standing options when it comes to the types of drug addiction recovery.  Along with its counterpart, residential or inpatient treatment, these two treatments are the basis on which rehab and recovery decisions are made.  You need to decide which kind of treatment is going to give you the best chance of success.  Both kinds of treatment have their merits, but one might be a better fit for you than the other.  Outpatient treatment should definitely receive some of your focus.  There are a number of things to consider.

Pros of Outpatient Addiction Recovery

Money – Outpatient drug programs typically cost less than their residential counterparts.  Because the facilities do not have to keep professional staff on hand 24 hours a day, they can save quite a bit in overhead.  There are also lower costs associated with have a building that is not open all the time.  These outpatient drug programs will likely save money on not only staffing, but meals provided for the clients, and electricity and other utility costs by not being open all the time.

Flexibility – Outpatient treatment programs allow clients the flexibility to be able to keep up with their current commitments and continue on with their lives while still seeking treatment.  Outpatient programs still require the same commitment that residential programs require, however, in outpatient treatment you would be able to stay with your job or continue going to school because you will only need to be in treatment for some portion of each day rather than being required to be there all the time.  This also allows people to seek treatment and continue to keep up with their family commitment.  They may have minor children or aging parents who need care that cannot be offered by anyone else.

Instant Gratification – During outpatient treatment, you will have the opportunity to use the skills you have been cultivating in your recovery program right away.  You can test your skills, learn what is working and what is not, and then bring that information back to your therapist for evaluation.  You may be able to gain new skills to replace old skills that are not working and get a better chance at staying clean and sober in the long term since you are able to test immediately.  When you bring all of this information back to your therapist, you and he or she can come up with some new options and new approaches for you to try out and then start the process over again.

Cons of Outpatient Treatment 

Unsafe Home Environment – If your home life is not ideal than outpatient treatment may not be the right decision for you.  Having roommates who are drug or alcohol abusers is not a good situation for someone who is trying to get clean.  You could also be living in a situations where the people with whom you reside are not supportive of your decision to enter recovery.  Your home may be located in an area that is frequented by drug dealers or people who will offer you drugs.  None of these options are a good idea for when you are recovering.

Intensity – Depending upon the length and severity of your addiction problem, outpatient treatment may not be intense enough for you.  While you will do roughly the same things in outpatient treatment that you will in residential treatment, you may be in need of the constant monitoring of residential treatment.  You may need the extra level of security to keep yourself from slipping.  While outpatient treatment is a great option, it may not be the right option for you.

If you are a drug addict, exploring your treatment options before you make your decisions and choosing the option that will work best for you may be the right course of action.  You will be ensuring that you are going to be able to make the most out of your treatment and that you will be getting the long term tools that you need to move past your addiction and get back to the business of living your life.


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