The Benefits of an Outpatient Program for Treating Addictions

Millions of people across the United States struggle with substance use disorder. Although many people would like to get treatment for their addiction, many of them do not feel like they have time to enroll in an inpatient facility. Thankfully, there are many cases where individuals may qualify to get help from an outpatient program.

Understanding what an outpatient program is for treating addiction is important. By learning what these programs offer and how they can help, you will be better positioned to determine if an outpatient program is right for you.

What is Outpatient Rehabilitation?

An outpatient program for drug addiction is considered a nonresidential program that involves intensive therapy. These treatments are incredibly helpful for treating drug addiction as they help people learn the skills that they need while providing them with the flexibility to continue living their life. 

How is Outpatient Treatment Different from Inpatient Treatment

The biggest difference between an outpatient program and an inpatient treatment program is that patients who are involved in outpatient programs generally do not stay in drug rehab facilities. Unlike inpatient rehabs, people in outpatient programs live at their homes, at a halfway house, or at another facility outside of the actual rehabilitation center.

Inpatient rehab generally requires a person to remain in treatment for a period of 30 to 90 days. On the other hand, outpatient programs allow people to continue getting treatment as long as they need to in order to overcome their addiction.

When Is an Outpatient Program the Right Choice?

Although our outpatient program is designed to help people overcome various types of addictions, there are certain circumstances where an outpatient program may be more beneficial to some people. In general, an outpatient program may be beneficial to you if you have:

  • A mild to a moderate addiction
  • A very strong support system from friends and family
  • Dependable transportation to attend your therapy sessions on a regular basis
  • Self-motivation to attend your therapy sessions on a regular basis
  • Motivation to stick to the treatment schedule
  • Low risk of your withdrawal resulting in any complications

If you are an individual who suffers from a severe drug or alcohol addiction, an outpatient program may not be best for you. The fact that these programs tend to be less structured than inpatient programs means that people are forced to deal with their triggers on a daily basis. Individuals who struggle with severe drug and alcohol addiction may not be able to cope with triggers and other urges in a healthy manner. Additionally, individuals who have co-occurring mental health disorders along with their addictions may benefit more from inpatient programs.

How Does an Outpatient Program Work?

After being admitted to an outpatient program, you will live at home and return to the facility on a regular basis in order to go through various types of therapy. Depending on your individualized treatment plan, you may have to attend therapy several hours a day for several days each week. As you learn and develop coping skills for combating your addiction, you will generally be required to go to your outpatient program less frequently.

Before you begin your treatment program, you will meet with our staff members to determine what treatment plan will work for you. We will discuss your goals for treatment in order to help make the therapy more beneficial to you and more effective. We will ask you a variety of questions surrounding the use of substances, your medical history, any mental health issues you have, any medications that you take, any familial problems, if you are employed, and various other questions.

Once we establish a treatment plan that works for you, you will be informed of the rules that you are expected to follow throughout the duration of your outpatient program.  Individuals in outpatient programs are required to go to therapy sessions on a regular basis. In some cases, you may have assignments to undertake outside of your regular sessions.

What Are the Benefits of an Outpatient Program?

There are several advantages and benefits that come with an outpatient program for drug or alcohol addiction. These include:

  • You have the freedom to maintain your employment
  • You do not have to abandon your home or your family
  • The costs are generally more affordable for people who are on a tight budget
  • An outpatient program provides you with the ability to build a strong support group
  • You will be able to get the psychiatric care that you need to overcome your addiction
  • You will benefit from having various outreach resources to help you along the way
  • You will have the ability to dramatically improve the quality of your life
  • You will gain the motivation and encouragement that you need to maintain a life of sobriety

It is important to understand that there are various types of therapies that are used in our outpatient program.

Therapies Used in an Outpatient Program

Individuals can benefit by having the ability to go through various types of therapy to help them overcome their addiction. Some of the most common types of therapy that we use in our outpatient program include:

Each form of therapy that we implement in our program can provide you with the skills that you need to overcome your addiction and maintain a life of sobriety.

How Long Does an Outpatient Program Last

In most cases, outpatient programs last approximately 10 weeks. However, there are instances where people may be required to utilize a step-down approach that decreases the number of therapy sessions that a person has to go through each week as they strengthen their coping skills and develop stronger and healthier habits. 

Let Our team at Birmingham Recovery Center Help You

If you are struggling with an addiction and are interested in seeing if an outpatient program is right for you, feel free to reach out to our team at Birmingham Recovery Center at your earliest convenience.

Our team can provide you with the resources and information that you need to make an informed decision regarding whether our program can help you. Contact our team now to get started.


  • Ian Henyon, LPC

    Having worked in a variety of clinical settings since 2008, Ian brings well over a decade of treatment center experience to the leadership role at Birmingham Recovery Center. As Executive Director, he is responsible for all aspects of BRC’s operations and provision of services. Being firmly grounded in the notion of servant leadership, Ian is focused on establishing a supportive work environment as a foundation for providing superior clinical services to BRC’s clients. Ian combines his extensive knowledge of treating addiction and psychiatric illness with the recognition that addiction is a disorder of the brain, to ensure that all clients are treated with the highest levels of respect and compassion. Ian is a licensed professional counselor. He is a graduate of the University of Georgia and he received a Master of Science degree from Prescott College.


Request a Confidential Evaluation