More Addiction Program Options
Outpatient treatment refers to any program that permits you to attend your treatment and return home at night. These programs are a good fit for people with less intense symptoms or those who have already completed a period of inpatient/residential.
Outpatient programs offer a variety of treatment levels with options including:
- Partial hospitalization programs (PHPs) – daily treatment with sessions lasting about 6 hours
- Intensive outpatient programs (IOPs) – treatment 2-3 days per week lasting 2-3 hours each session
- Standard outpatient – weekly, biweekly, or monthly appointments lasting about an hour
Outpatient treatments are less restrictive than inpatient/ residential programs, but they carry risks from triggers and stresses in the home environment. Someone engaged in outpatient treatment will need a very supportive social network to avoid the dangers of relapse.
Attending support groups is a great way to extend the benefit of professional drug addiction treatment methods. Unlike the other levels of care, support groups do not offer professional treatment. Instead, support groups are maintained and facilitated by other people in recovery.
Support groups can be used in combination with any other level of care. Examples of self-help/ support groups include:
- AA – Alcoholics Anonymous
- NA – Narcotics Anonymous
- Other 12-step groups
- SMART Recovery
Helpful Behavioral Therapy Styles
In inpatient/ residential or outpatient treatments, you are likely to encounter several styles of behavioral therapy. These substance abuse therapy techniques are used by the therapist to accomplish the goal of extending your period of abstinence.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is a versatile style used for numerous physical health, mental health, and substance abuse issues. In CBT, the therapist coaches you towards building an understanding of how your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors are all interconnected.
CBT is based on the idea that modifying the way you talk to yourself can improve your life. By changing your thoughts and behaviors while encouraging healthier coping skills, your CBT therapist can help you manage your feelings and cravings to prevent relapse.
Many people in recovery have a certain level of uncertainty to the process. They struggle with the commitment and the desire needed to move forward towards sobriety.
Motivational interviewing (MI) recognizes this problem and aims to eliminate any doubt you may have. Rather than forcing recovery on you, a therapist using MI develops your motivation and drive to change.
MI will point out the differences between what you want and what you are doing to achieve what you want. This way you can learn to align your goals with your actions.
Contingency management (CM) is based on a basic principle: behaviors that are rewarded will increase, and behaviors that are punished or ignored will decrease. Since substance abuse is a very rewarding experience for many, CM attempts to overpower the reward of drugs and alcohol.
CM offers you tangible reinforcement for completing recovery-based and prosocial tasks. Turning in a clean urine screen could earn money or extra tickets for a prize lottery. Attending therapy or support groups could let you receive new clothing or restaurant gift cards.
As time goes on, the rewards of addiction will fade, and the positives of recovery take over.
Addiction Recovery Modalities
Modalities refer to the types of treatment you are receiving, often separated into three groups:
- Individual therapy – one-on-one meetings with you and the therapist
- Family therapy – meetings involving you, a therapist, and one or more people you know from your personal life
- Group therapy – meetings involving you, at least one therapist, and one or more people dealing with addiction you do not know from your personal life
Professionals in every level of care employ individual, family, and group therapies. Also, many therapy styles like CBT, MI, and CM can be used in an individual, family, or group setting.
For addiction recovery, all therapy modalities can be helpful.
The Role of Medications
Behavioral therapies play an important role in addiction recovery but so do medications. When prescribed by a professional, medications can aid with:
As mentioned, the discomfort of withdrawals leads many to relapse. In this situation, medications can reduce the cravings and launch early recovery from the drug of choice.
Once detoxification concludes and withdrawal symptoms pass, medications can help prolong abstinence from opioids, alcohol, and tobacco. Medications start to return normal functioning to the brain, which has been damaged by substance use.
People suffering from addiction have higher chances of having another mental health disorder like depression, anxiety, or bipolar disorder. If this is the case, it will be essential all conditions are treated simultaneously as mental health issues can be an underlying condition fueling addiction.
Be sure to speak with your treatment team regarding your substance abuse treatment plan to ensure your program goals and objectives include all important phases of recovery. Only treating the addiction will never result in a lasting recovery.