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When talking about drug or alcohol addiction recovery, you have two main options, namely inpatient treatment and outpatient treatment. In an inpatient treatment, the drug addict has to live in the facility for as long as the treatment lasts. On the other hand, the drug addict returns home every night after attending therapies, sessions, meetings, etc, in an outpatient program.

There are many types of outpatient programs available. You can opt for well-structured Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP), or go with general outpatient programs. Out of all, IOPs are generally chosen by many, as it is quite similar to the inpatient program. The only difference is that you can go back to your home to sleep and come back again the next morning.

Components of Intensive Outpatient Program

You can opt for an intensive outpatient program as a seamless continuum of care, after attending a residential program. Also, it can be followed by a less structured outpatient program. You may go with an IOP after going through a drug or alcohol detox when the substance needs to be processed out from your emotions safely. Generally speaking, an IOP includes the following components:

  • Sessions for a group as well as personal counseling
  • Individual and group behavioral therapy sessions
  • Observing the use of alcohol and drug
  • Treating medical as well as mental health
  • Medications
  • Training sessions on life skills
  • Meetings of support groups

An Intensive Outpatient Program also offers nutritional and exercise services, anger management classes, family counseling sessions, and different other such services are also a part of an IOP. The major goals of an IOP are to stick to sober living. Therefore, you may often undergo medical drug tests to ensure compliance.

An Intensive Outpatient Program includes various kinds of therapies and counseling sessions that can help you to learn new skills for managing stress and modifying your negative thoughts into positive ones. Attending group sessions will help you to gain an insight into the recovery from others who are also handling addiction like you.

Various medications are also used to treat you physically as well as emotionally.

Typical Intensive Outpatient Program

Typically, an Intensive Outpatient Program works quite as a residential drug rehab program does. You have to go through an assessment before entering a program. The information that you provide during assessment helps in designing a treatment plan specifically for you. During the evaluation, your medical, physical and mental health are thoroughly taken under consideration and then treated with medications, counseling, and therapies. The professional staff in an Intensive Outpatient Program works closely with your family and friends to develop and implement a workable plan.

There is no specific time span of an Intensive Outpatient Program. It may last for a week, or two or more. A program is generally structured for 6-30 hours a week, and 3-5 days a week according to your specific schedule.

Group sessions are lead by trained professionals, who encourage all group members to share their experience and concerns of their recovery. They provide particular topics to discuss openly in groups. These topics may be like “avoiding triggers for relapse”, “managing conflicts”, etc. Discussions in group therapy sessions are fun. These also help you in building new relations that support you in the long run.