In selecting a method of substance abuse treatment for yourself or for your loved one, one of the first decisions you will need to make is whether you will go with inpatient treatment or outpatient. The difference between inpatient and outpatient substance abuse treatment may seem basic - the client is admitted for one and not for the other - but this difference in methodology between the two actually sets them apart quite distinctly. These two different types of substance abuse treatment have very different dynamics, and you will want to carefully choose between the two in order to receive the treatment that is most relevant.
Inpatient substance abuse treatment is thought of by mental health professionals as the most intensive and effective form of substance abuse treatment available. This method entails living on site in the treatment facility under 24-hour per day monitoring. The main objective of this type of treatment is to keep the individual securely away from the substance they have been abusing so that they can relearn how to function without it. During the time they spend in the treatment center, they focus on their mental and physical health with the help of professional counselors and facilitators who lead them through a detoxification period, therapy sessions, cognitive exercises, readings, physical exercise and therapeutic activities to prepare them to re-enter the world with a new set of coping skills. This method is best for those who have a moderate to severe substance abuse problem.
Outpatient substance abuse treatment has similar therapeutic methods but because there is no admittance, treatment is much less intensive. The individual is still free to interact with the outside world however they choose, but they attend regular appointments and sessions with counselors, facilitators, sponsors and groups in order to work toward recovery and strengthen their mental health. Outpatient substance abuse treatment allows the average person to stay active in their lives and in their jobs rather than forcing them to take leave. This makes outpatient substance abuse treatment a great option for mild to moderate substance abusers, or individuals who have already been through inpatient treatment and need to supplement what they learned with more treatment.