Getting treatment for addiction is an important step towards living a clean and sober lifestyle. Unfortunately, sobriety is extremely difficult to achieve without some kind of professional help. If it were easy, there wouldn’t be as many treatment centers as there are, and it also wouldn’t be called addiction. Here’s what you can expect at outpatient treatment for drug and/or alcohol addiction.
Outpatient treatment means that you will not be living at the facility you are getting treatment at. You are free to choose if you live at home, but it might be a good idea to live in a sober living facility just to have the extra accountability and be away from temptation. There are a variety of different levels of outpatient treatment to choose from ranging from full-time, 40 + hours a week, to just a few times per week. It is largely your choice as far as which you attend, but keep in mind that the more time you dedicate towards your wellness, the better chance you’ll have at maintaining sobriety.
Outpatient Treatment 101
During treatment, your first day will consist of your intake, which means you will have to sit with a doctor or therapist – sometimes both – and answer questions designed to figure out the depth of your addiction and any other mental disorders such as anxiety, depression, or bipolar disorder. You’ll be drug tested to establish a baseline, and other medical exams may be done depending on the facility and your condition.
Your schedule throughout the day will consists of groups, activities and individual sessions. Here’s what you can expect.
- During processing groups you’ll share your time with your peers as you go around and discuss something that may have happened to you recently, or a specific topic. There will be a therapist or two present to guide the discussion and make sure everyone has a chance to speak.
- Activities can be anything from yoga to team building exercises to art classes. They are all ways to practice mindfulness and presence, all under the guidance of techs and therapists who can help you explore your issues through a creative outlet.
- Individual sessions will take place usually a few times a week, and you will get the chance to speak one on one with either the doctor or your therapist. This is a time to dive into your personal issues and address anything going on medically or that you do not feel comfortable talking about in front of a group.
The best way to approach therapy is with the idea of being “all in.” While people often balk at the idea of treatment because it will take away from their day-to-day life, it is so much more important to hit the pause button, get things in order, and then get back to your life – the right way. The more treatment you can commit to, the better chances of long-term sobriety.