Should I go Inpatient or Outpatient for Rehab?

If you are thinking of going into rehabilitation (rehab), please consider how hard it would be to go through detoxification (detox) without continuous help and support from a professional staff of people who care and know how to take excellent care of your needs during this process. If you are physically dependent on a substance, and experience withdrawal symptoms when trying to stop, then you will need to detox at an inpatient facility.


When you choose the residential option, the treatment of the psychological addiction to alcohol during the second phase of an inpatient alcohol rehab is seamlessly integrated into the program. You may greatly increase your chances of a successful finish of a rehab program without relapsing with a 24-hour psychological, peer, and medical support. According to statistics, the longer time that you stay in an inpatient or residential treatment, the better chances you have of staying drug-free and not relapsing when you get out of rehab.

Outpatient Rehab

Most of the time, short-term outpatient rehab programs require for a person to attend drug addiction and treatment education classes, 12-step meetings, or support groups, such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or Narcotics Anonymous (NA). The outpatient rehab program usually has minimum commitments in terms of the numbers of hours or days that a person attends weekly.

Many rehabs who supply an outpatient program, require a weekly personal session in therapy. The outpatient rehabs are usually conducted during the day, and at night, the patients are free to go. The freedom of going home at night is beneficial to some people due to being allowed to continue working or attending to family life. Another plus side to outpatient rehab is that the cost of attending outpatient therapy is much cheaper than inpatient rehab or therapy. The down side of the outpatient rehab is that when leaving the faculty, the patient has an easier access to alcohol or drugs.

Inpatient versus Outpatient

Personal needs are important aspects when it comes to an individual seeking rehab treatments. The outpatient and inpatient rehab programs are successful, yet the success varies depending on the individual’s circumstances and history with drugs or alcohol. Below are a few examples of different circumstance’s involving people:

  • Outpatient – These programs benefit people who are still working in a job or career and have a family to support. This program is also helpful if the individual isn’t experiencing withdrawal when they stop using or drinking. It’s a must that the person has been using or drinking heavily for less than a year.
  • Inpatient – This program support is more important for individuals who are experiencing withdrawal, or who know that they are dependent on alcohol or drugs in a physical sense. The inpatient detox program will help in these cases.

Mental Illness and Addiction

Another possibility to consider is that people who have mental illnesses in addition to addiction can sometimes thrive in outpatient care. However, studies suggest that they might do a little better in an inpatient program. People who had outpatient care were four times more likely to drop out of therapy early. This figure maintained despite the status of people enrolled in care, meaning that mentally ill people didn’t do worse in care than the healthier individuals.