Types of Drug Treatment Programs
Terms such as “drug rehab” and “treatment” do not always capture the breadth of the offerings available to you as a parent of a child in need. At DrugHelpDesk.com, we understand the issues involved in this complex and difficult situation and offer the resources to familiarize you with all of your options. On this page, you can learn about the various types of programs available to serve your family’s unique needs. And keep in mind that while a local program might be convenient, it’s not always the ideal fit for your child.
Outpatient/ Intensive Outpatient
This level of care supports recovery within the community. It is flexible in its intensity, frequency, and duration and can vary from one to twelve hours each week of Individual, Family, and Group counseling. Services include education, skill development, and psychotherapy to explore triggers to use, identify effective coping skills, and support ongoing recovery.
Partial Hospitalization/ Day Treatment
This level of care offers additional support while allowing the individual to remain in the community. Programs vary from “after school” entailing four to twenty hours each week up to forty hours each week. This format provides additional structure and support to participants who may otherwise struggle with sobriety between typical outpatient appointments. Programs offer educational, social, therapeutic, and recreational activities that encourage a holistic recovery approach
Residential Short Term
Typical programs range from 28 days to 6 months. The intent of these programs is to “jumpstart” treatment for individuals that have not been successful at a less intensive level of care. Programs are often structured around a “level system” that encourages completion of appropriate tasks and rewards positive behaviors. Participants learn about the consequences of their choices through group living within a “milieu” of peers, staff input as well as feedback through Individual and Group counseling.
Residential Long Term
Similar in concept to Residential short term programs, these often last from several months to several years, providing corrective structure and support to individuals that may not benefit from returning to their homes or communities because of a lack of healthy coping skills, poor social or familial supports, inadequate access to recovery services, or insufficient structure.
Wilderness Based Programming
Also referred to as Outdoor Behavioral Healthcare, these programs integrate elements of traditional outpatient counseling and residential treatment within a natural environment. The change in context and the addition of a novel activity, such as backpacking or canoeing, serves as a catalyst for change as participants are confronted by the natural consequences of their actions while supported by staff in developing healthy skills that transfer to the recovery process.
Boarding Schools with Drug & Alcohol Treatment Programming
These specialized programs offer the recovery environment stability of a residential treatment program with a lesser intensity focus on treatment. These programs often serve as an aftercare component of recovery following an intense treatment episode like wilderness based program or hospitalization. These programs offer academics, social skill development, and mental health / substance abuse counseling within the context of a clean/sober living environment
This is a medical support level of care that manages the physical withdrawal symptoms of a drug. It may assist with the detoxification process as a first step towards recovery. This is the required level of care for those individuals who have used drugs that can cause death from non-medical management of the withdrawal process.
Transitional/ Secondary Treatment
Sometimes referred to as “halfway houses” or transitional living arrangements, these programs offer a step-down option to those individuals who may not be returning to the home after an episode of treatment. Less structured than a residential program, these options offer a participant a group sober living environment with ready access to staff and peer support to maintain recovery.
Christian (Faith) Based Programming
Typically, these programs mirror outpatient counseling and residential treatment programs. Their holistic approach addresses the spiritual/faith components of an individual and serves as an additional avenue of recovery. Programs offer additional focus on the spiritual component of an individual and their recovery, often addressing underlying issues that were obscured by addiction. These programs benefit those individuals who see their lives as impacted by substance use and influenced by their faith.
Clinically Based Programming
These programs offer a more structured approach to recovery as compared with self-help recovery options like Alcoholics Anonymous. Interventions often focus on understanding the cause of addiction while concurrently addressing the cognitive, emotional, and behavioral components of recovery.
Therapeutic Treatment Programming
Programs may support “harm reduction” approach to recovery that seeks to minimize the significant consequences of use while not requiring full abstinence. These programs address development of healthy coping skills to address addictive behavior as well as the thoughts and emotions that underlie. The focus on participant competencies rather than problematic behaviors offers a strengths based approach that is ideal for some individuals struggling with recovery.