Inpatient Treatment

Inpatient treatment is often an effective, and in some cases, necessary, treatment option for addiction.

What Is Inpatient Treatment?

Inpatient, or residential, care is a type of rehab for addiction that allows the individual to stay at the facility 24/7 (National Institute on Drug Abuse). The program provides a controlled environment in which the patient has constant access to healthcare professionals, medication, and therapy, and where they will be able to avoid the temptation to use drugs or alcohol. It is a more intensive option than the alternative of outpatient treatment.

What Is Inpatient Care Like?

Inpatient rehab centers are often highly structured in that patients wake up, eat, attend therapy, and go to bed at the same times every day. The structure of these programs is often necessary for patients who have been struggling with substance abuse. In many cases, family members are allowed to visit at certain times, and patients also have access to other activities, like yoga and meditation, that can be effective during addiction recovery.

Who Needs Inpatient Treatment?

Not all individuals require this type of care in order to safely recover from a substance use disorder, but in many cases, this option can be necessary.

  • According to a study from the medical journal Psychiatric Quarterly, “Patents with high psychiatric severity… are predicted to have a better outcome in inpatient treatment.”
    • This includes anyone suffering from a comorbid mental disorder like depression, an anxiety disorder, schizophrenia, etc.
    • It also includes those who are experiencing psychotic symptoms as a result of their substance abuse, which is especially common among stimulant users.
  • People who do not have a strong social support system at home may also benefit from inpatient care. In a program like this, the doctors, nurses, therapists, and even the other patients in the facility can become a support system for those who do not have one.
    • It is also dangerous for someone who doesn’t have a group of friends and family to support them to leave the safe space of treatment every day.
  • Those with severe addictions and/or withdrawal symptoms may also require inpatient care so medical professionals can look after them round-the-clock. Otherwise, they might experience complications or relapse back to substance abuse.
  • In some cases, certain individuals feel unsafe in their homes or that someone they know will try to hurt them or prevent them from recovering. If this occurs, inpatient care can be a safe and necessary option.

In general, those who are very vulnerable to relapse or will be unsafe on their own should consider seeking inpatient care over outpatient care. While this option isn’t necessary for everyone, it can be the safest program for those who are just starting out in their recoveries and require extra help and attention.