The breadth and depth of the newest substance abuse crisis has families, medical professionals and law enforcement entities struggling. Fortunately it has spurred these same groups, in conjunction with the wellness community, to employ innovative methods like Intensive Outpatient Programs (IOP) to help people overcome their addictions. At the forefront of providing solutions are IOP Miami Florida treatment programs that aim to address the problem while allowing those in treatment to continue to work and live in the community.
What is Intensive Outpatient Treatment?
Intensive Outpatient Programs offer a progressive means of dealing with addiction and its underlying causes without the restrictions of a live-in program. This alternative can be used as a primary step for those who don’t have the ability to put work or family life on hold during recovery, substance users who don’t have access to an inpatient program due to financial concerns or lack of coverage and those whose drug of choice doesn’t have a strong physical component that might cause medical or emotional problems due to substance withdrawal. It is also a secondary component to many inpatient treatment programs once the initial need for medical supervision has passed and the transition back to sober living begins.
Types of Intensive Outpatient Programs
Outpatient programs run the gamut from 12-Step groups like NA and AA to private counseling with a licensed therapist or member of the clergy. These programs are usually voluntary and require a firm commitment and extra effort on the part of the participant to get to meetings, attend therapy sessions and cope with outside influences and stresses that often enable addiction when they don’t actively add to the problem. It’s also important to involve spouses, employers and friends or family in the recovery process. The better programs combine a number of approaches, such as using a balance of private and group counseling or adding a spiritual component.
A popular option for the right candidate may involve alternative or holistic treatments that include meditation, mindfulness and acupuncture to help the participant identify and mitigate triggers while reprogramming the social conditioning that contributes to substance use issues. There is also a regressive factor, known in some circles as a ‘declining intensity program’ that allows users to incrementally step-down the level of intervention and take back control over their lives once the more intense beginning phase of recovery has passed.
Benefits of IOP
It’s difficult to start over again with employment and housing or to leave your children in someone elses’ care. Sometimes, financial and transportation issues crop up if one has to go away to rehab. Most outpatient treatments are local and allow participants faster access to solutions. Unless there is an element of abuse of dysfunction that makes it better for all involved if the substance user is removed from the environment, many addicts do well in a more familiar, supportive atmosphere.
However, the biggest advantage of an outpatient program is the lower level of disruption to the participant’s life. Unless you are in a highly dysfunctional environment or have a long-term, physical addiction to deal with, like the upsurge in opioid use and dependency, remaining in your home and at your job allows certain level of continuity. In addition to having the ability to care for family members and keep your job and/or home, intensive outpatient treatment also gives you:
– a non-judgmental support structure outside the home
– tools to cope with stress and overcome temptations that lead to relapse
– 24-hour crisis intervention
– job and life skills training
Are You a Candidate for IOP?
No one ever sets out to become addicted to drugs or alcohol, but it can happen no matter your socioeconomic, religious or family background. Those with strong family support and access to intensive treatment programs have a better long-term chance of overcoming substance abuse than those who are forced to go it alone. If you have the determination to succeed, you don’t need medically supervised intervention and have a fairly stable work history and support system, an outpatient program may be a good match.
Whether you’re looking for a more spiritual, holistic approach to beating your addiction or you need something structured and regimented, programs like Phases of Sobriety and others are there to help. Look for a program that will meet your needs while offering the help and support you need – physically, mentally and emotionally – to meet your wellness goals. In the end, the first step toward sober living is yours to take.