What are the Advantages of Outpatient Rehab for Alcohol Abuse?
Alcohol use disorder can range in severity from mild to severe, and the form of treatment that is right for you depends on where you fall on that spectrum. If your symptoms of alcohol addiction are not severe, you may be able to obtain treatment for your alcoholism on an outpatient basis.
Outpatient rehab in Los Angeles is a treatment option that may be the best choice for someone who wants to get sober but is unable to step away from daily responsibilities, such as work, school or child care. It may be an option for you if you have a fairly stable life, good health physically and mentally, strong family support and you don’t have a long history of problem drinking.
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Advantages of Outpatient Rehab
There are some advantages to outpatient rehab, as long as your addiction is mild. These advantages include:
- More affordable than inpatient treatment
- Ability to continue some of your daily routine
- Ability to remain connected to your support system of family and friends
- More freedom and flexibility than inpatient treatment
- More privacy, since you may be able to avoid telling your employer or acquaintances that you are in treatment
- Can be effective if you are in the early stages of alcoholism
Types of Outpatient Rehab Programs
Outpatient programs usually meet for a set number of hours per day and number of days per week. These programs include one-on-one counseling, group counseling, medications that may relieve cravings or mild withdrawal symptoms and other services to support recovery. The American Society of Addiction Medicine defines outpatient services as those including less than nine hours of service per week.
Outpatient rehab programs sometimes include education programs to help you understand the disease of alcoholism. They may also include classes to help you rebuild a healthy lifestyle such as nutrition, meditation or yoga.
Intensive outpatient programs are structured programs that consist of nine hours of treatment or more each week. In this type of program, you would obtain treatment three to five days a week for three or more hours each day.
If you require a high level of care without attending a residential facility, partial hospitalization may be right for you. This type of program consists of 20 or more hours of addiction recovery services each week. This can work for you if you have psychological challenges or medical issues, as long as you don’t need 24-hour supervision.
Recognizing When You Need Help
If you are in the early stages of alcoholism, you may question whether or not you actually need help. Some signs that your use of alcohol has progressed to alcohol use disorder include:
- Feeling uncomfortable when alcohol isn’t available
- Feeling compelled to drink
- Having the inability to control how much you drink
- Regularly drinking more than you intend to
- Feeling guilty or ashamed about your drinking
- Forgetting things you have done while drinking
What’s important isn’t so much the amount of alcohol you are drinking but how it is affecting you. If you are having problems in your life because of your drinking, it’s time to get help.
Things to Consider When Choosing a Method of Treatment
Alcohol is a powerful drug that can be physically and mentally addicting. If you have become physically dependent on alcohol, attempting to stop can cause withdrawal symptoms that can range in severity from uncomfortable to life-threatening.
If you have coexisting disorders such as mental illness or addiction to other substances, outpatient rehab may not be the right choice for you. A good place to start finding out your treatment options is by talking to your doctor, who will evaluate your overall health and determine if you have any medical problems that could complicate treatment. Talking with your doctor or an addiction professional can help you determine whether treatment should be done on an inpatient or outpatient basis.
If you or a loved one are struggling with alcoholism, please call us at (866) 339-3544 or submit the form below to learn more about our alcohol addiction treatment programs in Los Angeles.
Since 2004, Lori has worked with the behavioral health treatment community to bring awareness about mental health disorders and evidence-based treatments. Lori strives to help people better understand mental illness and provide support to those needing help and their families. As a mental health advocate, Lori works to be a voice for those suffering from substance abuse, dual diagnosis, borderline personality disorder, depression, anxiety, trauma, or any other disorder.