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“Inpatient vs. Outpatient Treatment: Your Guide to an Addiction-Free Life”

Addiction treatment is a complicated process. Before someone could begin their path to recovery, they have to muster a lot of willpower and courage—not to mention they need support from their loved ones as well.

Once they’ve built up the determination to end their addictive habits and seek treatment, they will have to go through a medical assessment. This will take into account all the different factors such as their age, weight, gender, health condition, drug habits, and symptoms. Only then can a treatment plan be created for them.

Depending on their condition, they may be required to seek either inpatient or outpatient treatment.

Today we will be discussing both: what these treatment methods entail, what you could expect from each of them, and which one gives the patient a better fighting chance against drug dependence.

Inpatient Treatment

Also known as residential treatment, inpatient treatment is recommended for patients who have been abusing a certain substance for a long time. They may already be suffering from long term abuse effects, and they need intensive medical attention in order to get off the drug. For patients that have been long time users of illicit drugs, it can be fatal to suddenly stop taking it.

Withdrawal effects are to be expected when someone who is drug dependent abruptly ends their intake. And these effects become more intense depending on the user’s addictive habits. In some cases, withdrawal can be life-threatening.

This is why detox is necessary—and it must be done under the supervision of trained medical professionals. Inpatient treatment allows the patient to receive this kind of medical attention. They will have round-the-clock access to their needs. They will also be given medication as their drug intake is gradually lowered. Withdrawal symptoms, when managed this way, will be easier to deal with.

Inpatient treatment usually takes 30 days, during which the patient will stay in a treatment facility. A safe and comfortable environment will be created for them, so that they can focus on getting sober. During this period, all their physical and psychological needs will be addressed.
It is a well-structured, high maintenance method that ensures the patient is given continuous care and guidance.

Outpatient Treatment

The opposite of inpatient treatment, this method is more focused on providing flexibility for the patient. If inpatient treatment sounds restrictive and the patient is not required to get into a rehab facility, they can opt for an outpatient treatment, also known as partial hospitalization.

Not every addicted individual can afford to spend a long time inside a treatment facility. Those who are taking care of their children, those who are still going to work, those who are still studying—they may take advantage of the freedom provided by outpatient treatment.

Of course, this method also requires more commitment. The patient has to go back to the treatment facility often, so that their progress can be tracked. They will have to be more responsible.

Outpatient treatment lets the patient feel more independent—which is great for their self-confidence. Addiction often destroys a person’s self-esteem and self-worth. Giving them the control over their own recovery is a great way to show them that they are still in charge of their life and their future.

Also, there are patients who simply don’t meet the criteria for inpatient treatment. They may be in need of much less care compared to other addicted individuals. Still, they must be able to dedicate many hours of their week to this particular method. They may spend 3 hours per day, 3 days per week in the facility—enough time to help them focus on getting sober.

It goes without saying that they must abstain from drugs and alcohol when they are out of the facility.


Both inpatient and outpatient methods have their benefits. In fact, there are specific reasons why you should choose one over the other—and it all depends on the patient’s needs. So there really is no treatment method that can be considered better.

Speaking in terms of price, outpatient treatment is cheaper, but it also requires patients to provide their own food and medication. Inpatient treatment usually comes with a larger price, but it’s a package that includes the medication needed throughout the process. Financially speaking, they may be balanced.

In terms of independence, outpatient treatment requires more discipline over inpatient treatment, but it also allows more freedom. Patients can do what they need to do, granted that they are abstaining from the drugs.

Inpatient may be more restrictive, but it also ensures that the person remains sober.

Whichever method ends up more beneficial for the patient will depend on the implementation of rules and cooperation of the individual. Both methods can be effective when done right.

Addiction Free Solutions

Dont be problem focused. Be solution focused! At Addiction Free Solutions, we know that the solution lies within you. You have to commit to living a sober life. We help connect you with a center that can help assist you from detox and rehab to therapy. We want you to get the help that you need so you can go on and inspire others. Looking for in-patient, out-patient or sober living afterwards? We help you with that as well!

  • “I loved my rehab treatment. I wanted to do in-patient but I could not miss work, so out-patient worked wonders for me. Best of all I did not lose my job! I’m so grateful to be living this life that I dreamed about for so long.”

  • “Addiction Free Solutions helped find a center that I loved. My therapy sessions were amazing, and I was able to dig deep and figure out why I kept relapsing. I’m confident that I am capable of sustaining my sobriety now!”

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