Updated on 07/03/23

Content Reviewed by Cameron Bolish, M.Ed., CEO of PaRC

When choosing a substance use treatment program for yourself or your loved one, you may find yourself overwhelmed by the number of treatment programs available. Every treatment facility offers different programs, but how can you be sure that these programs will fit the individualized needs of you or your loved one?

The two main treatment categories are inpatient and outpatient, also known as residential treatment. Both treatment options offer unique facets. Still, to understand what option is right for you, you must consider the severity of your (or your loved one’s) substance use condition and associated symptoms. While outpatient offers greater flexibility with schedules, residential treatment is typically more structured and intensive. It is important to acknowledge that residential drug rehab programs provide the best chance at long-term sobriety because of their intensity.

Residential treatment is usually recommended after medical detoxification has been completed, as it provides patients a clean slate and a fresh mindset to begin their recovery journey. It is essential to recognize the several other benefits of residential treatment so that you or your loved one can get the intimate, intensive treatment experience that will sustain long-term sobriety.

What is residential addiction treatment?

Residential treatment offers 24/7, live-in care for patients. Living environments are safe and secure, allowing patients to experience stable living as they go through treatment. Every facility has unique expectations and programming for patients. Most residential programs last a few months up to two years.

Residential treatment settings create individualized treatment plans for patients based on their personal needs and goals for treatment. During treatment, the activities and interventions are designed to help patients recognize triggers, cravings and destructive behavior patterns to encourage patients to adopt healthier thought patterns and behavior. All residential treatment programs offer a combination of traditional therapy and group therapy options to help patients integrate their newly learned lessons and skills into real-life scenarios.

Residential treatment environments are predictable.

One of the most significant benefits of residential treatment facilities is that they are predictable. Individuals trying to recover from addiction or other substance use issues are likely venturing into uncharted territory when they enter treatment. To increase their motivation and willingness to change, they must have access to a predictable living environment to feel safe after they finish therapy or other treatment programs during the day. Patients are given rules and expectations to follow when they arrive at the facility to avoid surprises throughout their stay.

Residential treatment environments are also predictable because there are few environmental triggers. When patients go through outpatient treatment, they often return to their homes after a day of therapy. However, the family members or friends they live with may still be using alcohol or drugs regularly, which adds pressure on someone trying to become sober. Similarly, interpersonal conflict is more likely to occur when living at home during treatment, which is another added trigger and an additional reason to choose residential treatment.

Residential treatment facilities have on-demand staff.

Another benefit of residential treatment centers is that they always have staff available on demand. No matter what time of the day or night, if a patient is struggling with something, there is always someone nearby to help them. Patients have access to treatment professionals at all times that know what each person is going through and want to provide support as patients work through issues.

Sometimes patients would rather not speak with a professional but rather a peer who is quite literally going through the same situation they are. This factor is another notable benefit of residential treatment. Everyone living at the facility understands the consequences of substance use and acknowledges the pain they are going through because of it. It can be enlightening to connect with other patients at the facility and share stories of struggle and success to help increase social support.

Residential treatment programs put your recovery at the highest priority.

Outpatient treatment programs are beneficial for some because they allow patients to stay engaged in other personal responsibilities outside of treatment, like school or work. However, these treatment programs are mostly recommended for individuals with moderate substance use problems. If outpatient treatment has not worked in the past or substance use issues are severe, consider a residential treatment program.

Residential treatment programs are highly structured, allowing patients to put complete focus on their recovery during their stay. They have no other obligations or responsibilities than going to treatment, getting sober and working to sustain long-term recovery. For someone who struggles with intense triggers and cravings, residential programs will teach them how to address the underlying issues that led them to substance use and overcome unhealthy habits. When patients are not in therapy, residential programs offer an abundance of sober hobbies and community activities to keep patients engaged with the treatment experience.

Prevention and Recovery Center is a substance use and addiction treatment facility that provides the highest quality treatment for all ages. We offer inpatient treatment as a program option for individuals who need an intensive, intimate treatment experience. We recognize that inpatient treatment isn’t always a possibility, which is why we offer outpatient treatment options as well. To learn more about our treatment programs, including outpatient and residential treatment, call PaRC today at (713) 939-7272.