Intensive Outpatient Program

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Everyone deserves a second chance at life. They even deserve a third and as many as is necessary to live the life that they always dreamed they could. Everyone deserves their own version of happiness in their story as long as they are not hurting others, and IOPs (Intensive Outpatient Programs) can help individuals who are fighting addiction and mentally or physically hurting not only others, but also themselves. Perhaps it was an innocent downfall of having to live with chronic pain and suffering due to the diagnosis of a physical or mental illness. Whether someone is battling cancer and takes regular doses of pain medication or another possesses crippling anxiety that is gradually getting worse and they keep increasing their dosages of over six different kinds of medications, there is never a time to give up and there is always hope for that future that you always imagined would be yours.

Who receives the most benefit from an IOP?

Someone who has researched the features of enrolling in an intense outpatient program and feels that it is the perfect option for their circumstances will go through an intake assessment to determine the best customized plan for their specific situation. IOPs were established in the 1980s with the idea that only high functioning addicts would find success in an IOP; however, as clinical studies determined that the program was highly effective, they realized that even those who faced considerable psychosocial issues, such as homelessness and dual diagnosis, would realize  positive results. Research has proven that an IOP can help each addict as long as it provides:

What are the goals of an IOP?

Most people, whether they are facing an addiction or have seen how it affects a loved one, do not realize that becoming sober is not as simple as going through detox to remove the substance from the body. Drugs and alcohol change the way the brain works, so the body believes that it needs it to function normally. The mind creates intense cravings that the patient must overcome in order to remain sober. People rarely abuse and become addicted to any substance after the first time they consume a drug. It gradually occurs, leaving a wake of destruction in its path with shattered relationships and emotions, depleted finances, and waning health. This means that it will take time for the cravings and intense desire for the drug to diminish as well. So, what are the objectives of an IOP?

How is an IOP different from a traditional outpatient program?

Many individuals can be overly independent, feeling that they do not need help and can function on their own. They do not realize that the give and take of relationships how they grow as a human. Their self-reliance means that they naturally attempt to become and stay sober on their own. Not only can this be dangerous, since some drugs cause life-threatening withdrawal symptoms, but the majority of them discover that they are finding it a challenge to fight the cravings. They would certainly benefit from the attributes of an IOP. The person who cannot take time away from their full-time job responsibilities or their children can find assistance from an IOP, because it does not require them to leave at the facility. IOPs are unlike a traditional outpatient program with their offerings of a higher level of structure and more emphasis placed on education and support. Simultaneously, it allows them to live in a comfortable and safe place … their own home. This can reduce the financial impact as well. The benefits of an IOP can be summarized as:

What happens in an intensive outpatient program (IOP)?

Entering a rehabilitation program requires a vulnerability with which not many are comfortable. People must have an open mind and be ready to work and delve into any mental health issues they may possess. It is not only difficult to fight the physical cravings that the drug itself has created, but the patient must address unresolved trauma and other emotional obstacles that have caused the desire to get high in the first place. Visits are centered around the patient’s detailed plan, which can be a few days each week for several hours each visit or whatever else is deemed necessary. Some programs are scheduled to be completed in 90 days and some 14-16 weeks, depending on the situation. So, what happens in an IOP?

What is considered a successful completion of an IOP?

There is no standard across the board that gauges how well a program works. This is simply because it is based on evidence that is highly unpredictable, such as post-program interviews, irregular timing of the interviews, and the fact that each person will battle it differently for the rest of their life. In general, to be considered ready to leave the intensity of the program, one must meet the following:

60% of patients in any given facility are not admitted of their own volition. They had either been dealing with dangerous withdrawals, had recently overdosed, or were commanded to attend by a court system. Many of them change their attitudes during therapy and realize how much it can turn their lives around for the better. Three outlooks are found in those who successfully remain sober. They:

Success rates are based on many factors, including how well matched patients are to their program. There are no certifications required to open a rehab facility, so locating the one that most complements your likes and dislikes is essential. The success rate also depends on the experience level of the staff. Asking what their success rate is before entering the program can be one of the guidelines to help determine if that is the IOP for you. The staff should be trained in dealing with the detox, rehab, and recovery of your drug of choice. No one person responds the same to any given treatment, and not one method alone will be sufficient enough to keep someone sober. Programs that employ the use of a combination of medications and behavioral therapies tend to increase the likelihood of lasting sobriety.

Humans were put on this earth to grow and help others. We are all one and all deserve second chances. This is how those who have spiraled down into the hole of addiction have been known to view their lives after they have taken the second chance offered to them through an intensive outpatient program (IOP). Those who come out grateful on the other side of addiction know that they need to live life to the fullest in order to take advantage of the happiness that they have found. Many who had lost everything to get to their rock bottom had to ask for help. They lost not only relationships and jobs, but their self-confidence and the ability to make healthy, rational decisions was also gone. In an IOP, they are not only taught how to overcome the urge to constantly look for and consume drugs and alcohol, but also how to live again without the dark cloud of their past traumas. It is never too late to look for help and regain control of your life.