For many people in early sobriety home environments aren’t ideal for supporting the recovery journey. Triggers, a lack of support, or instability may undermine attempts to stay sober. In these circumstances, an Intensive Outpatient Program may be the ideal solution.
What is an Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP)
Recovery from addiction or other co-occurring mental health disorders can be a complex process. Depending on the needs of the individual and their unique circumstances, different levels of care may be required at each stage of the recovery journey. Intensive outpatient programs (IOP) are another tool to help people in recovery maintain their progress while gradually easing back into everyday life.
IOPs are generally considered step-down services for people who have completed detox and residential rehab. IOP programs in Florida let people who are in early recovery continue accessing support services, like group therapy and mental health counseling, but without constant 24-hour supervision. However, intensive outpatient programs can also be used as a stand-alone options for individuals who may not be able to enter into residential treatment.
Benefits of an IOP
In many ways, intensive outpatient programs are very similar to in-patient or residential treatment options. Both offer the treatment, focus, and structure that recovery from substance abuse or mental health disorders requires, but IOPs are less restrictive. In addition to being a workable middle ground between in-patient treatment and less structured out-patient treatment, IOPs offer other benefits, such as:
- Cost: intensive outpatient programs are generally less expensive than in-patient treatment
- Success rate: individuals who use IOPs generally find more long-lasting results than with other out-patient approaches
- Support network: IOPs provide an opportunity to build a support network with other individuals who know what you are going through.
- Ease and flexibility: treatment services are scheduled around your day-to-day needs.
- Access to treatment professionals: because care is provided in a clinical environment, you will have access to addiction and other treatment professionals who can respond to your unique needs.
- Relapse support: if you should relapse, or feel at risk of relapse, you will have better access to support to get you back on the road to recovery.
- Peer group support: in addition to clinical treatment, you will also be able to participate in peer group support, like Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous.
- Recovery skills: you will be able to learn skills and coping mechanisms in a safe environment, that will support your recovery while you go about your day-to-day life.
- Greater privacy: out-patient programs tend to offer more privacy for individuals than in-patient programs.
- Family support: IOPs your family and friends to help support you during your recovery journey. Additionally, intensive outpatient programs also offer services to help the family work through issues or dynamics that may hinder recovery.
When is an IOP Appropriate?
Once you or your loved one have completed the initial phase of recovery it is generally recommended that you complete a course of comprehensive care. Comprehensive care can be in-patient rehab treatment or partial hospitalization. Care can also be intensive outpatient treatment.
Intensive outpatient treatment is a good choice for anyone who:
- Has completed detox and a residential rehab program, but is not quite ready to return to day-to-day living.
- May have attempted to try to recover from a substance abuse disorder on their own, or with less structured treatment options, and needs more comprehensive treatment.
- Who may not require the full structure of in-patient treatment, but need the full breadth of services available offered with intensive outpatient programs.
- Cannot necessarily enter into rehab due to commitments, such as family or work, but need robust and inclusive treatment for substance abuse or mental health conditions.
What to Look for in an IOP
Many treatment facilities offer intensive outpatient programs, in order to help patients transition from one step to the next more easily. However, if you are considering IOP programs in Florida as a stand-alone service or because your current treatment facility does not offer IOP programs, there are some things you should look for.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) have outlined standards for facilities that offer IOPs should adhere to. There are fourteen standards; among these are:
- The program provides a minimum of nine hours per week of treatment
- Monitoring the client’s continued abstinence from drugs or alcohol
- Makes treatment readily available (e.g. convenient operating hours)
- Ensures that treatment plans address the client’s individual needs
- The program uses evidence-based therapies and practices
- The IOP builds on existing motivation for treatment
- The program encourages participation from families, friends, and employers
IOP Programs in South Florida
Early intervention is an important first step to get on the road to recovery from substance abuse and mental health disorders. For both those new to recovery or who continue to struggle with addiction or another co-occurring disorder, intensive outpatient programs offer significant advantages to help overcome addiction and get back living. For more information about our south Florida intensive outpatient programs, contact us today. Your life is waiting. Also, check out the admissions process to get started.