There are different stages of treatment for issues with dependencies, disorders, and addiction. The American Society of Addiction Medicine has divided them into five levels of treatment.

1: Early intervention services

2: Outpatient services

3: Intensive outpatient or partial hospitalization services

4: Residential or inpatient treatment services

5: Medically managed intensive inpatient treatment services

Intensive outpatient programs are considered Level 3 treatment.

The two main types of treatments are Residential Treatment and (IOPs), which stands for Intensive outpatient programs.

1-Residential Treatment

During residential or inpatient programs, clients stay under supervision at all times; sometimes, clients can go outside the facility ( a hospital, clinic, rehab, or another facility) depending on their treatment program. Residential treatment programs vary in length, but most are about a month long.

2-Intensive Outpatient Programs (IOPs)

Intensive outpatient programs are treatment programs that target clients with addictions, depression, eating disorders, and other dependencies that don't require round-the-clock supervision. Clients in Intensive Outpatient Programs usually visit the facility three to four times weekly, often for three hours each visit.

The specifics will differ depending on the facility (see this link), and the program clients are following. Still, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), a program should include 9-20 hours of participation on a weekly bases. An IOP provides more care than standard programs, and this requires more treatment time weekly. Clients usually have individual therapy. Individual therapy is highly recommended, but it's not necessary for all cases.


Intensive outpatient programs allow clients to reside at home while they receive intensive treatment.. studies proved that both Intensive outpatient programs and Residential Treatment could show impressive results.

Some clients require residential treatment to be separated from access to drugs and from people that might take them 1 or 2 steps back on the line of treatment. On the other hand, some clients can't reside in a facility as they have work to do, and daily activities that they simply cannot do inside the facility. Intensive outpatient treatments are not recommended for those with severe cases of addiction or co-occurring disorders. These cases are referred to as Residential treatment as they will need to be monitored at all times.

Clients on intensive outpatient treatment are expected to adhere to the strict structure of the program, and they need to be in a safe and encouraging environment, they also need support from their family members and friends. If the client is in close contact with other people who use drugs or drink, residential treatment is generally recommended to get the client away from these triggers for relapse.

Expected Treatment

The care received via an intensive outpatient program will differ depending on the facility. Still, it generally consists of 9-12 hours of group and individual therapy weekly, besides taking part in a 12-step program.

12-Step Program

The 12-Steps:

1-Admitting powerlessness over substance abuse

2-Believe in a power greater than oneself to restore sobriety

3-Deciding to entrust one's will to a higher power

4-Examining one's morals

5-Admitting the nature of one's wrong

6-Allowing higher power to remove defects in character

7-Asking for removal of shortcoming

8-Identifying people harmed by one's substance abuse

9-Making direct amends wherever possible

10-Counting to examine oneself and admit faults

11-Using prayer and/or meditation to communicate with higher power

12-Achieving spiritual awaking and practicing 12-step principles in life

Clients are encouraged to build a relationship with a higher power, which doesn't have to be God.

Group Therapy

Group therapy is defined as having one therapist or more( rarely more than two therapists for the same group ) treating a group of clients. Group sizes depend on the type of group therapy. Couples therapy, for example, a kind of group therapy that typically treats romantic partners, consists of the two partners (mostly). In contrast, some other groups, substance abuse groups, for example, may contain 10-12 clients in a session, when they can all communicate with each other and talk about their experiences and their emotions if necessary. Researchers of group therapy recommend that the maximum number of clients per group should be between 6 and 12; however, some groups have large numbers of clients in them, that will depend on the program and facility.

Advantages Of Group Therapy

1-Assures clients seeking treatment that they aren't alone in their struggle and that others may have the same or even more struggle.

2-opens space for cooperation and allows members of the group to support each other by offering or receiving help from other group members.

Individual Therapy

Individual therapy consists of a therapeutic situation where the client is involved in the therapeutic process with at least one therapist.

Individual therapy focuses on the one client giving them more time to talk about their issues as well as having more attention from the therapist. Some patients don't feel comfortable speaking in a group about their problems, so having individual therapy will give them a chance, to be honest, and talk freely.

Individual therapy sessions will usually be scheduled on at least a weekly basis, if not more often, especially early in treatment

Advantage Of Individual Therapy

1-client can find it easy to talk about issues that they might not like sharing in a group.

2-The client gets more attention from the therapist, which allows the therapist to have a healthy and deep understanding of the client's struggle or issues and be able to have a unique approach to help him.

Modern (IOPs)

Some clients might find it difficult to visit the facility often. They may be living in a remote area, or they are elders, so, fortunately, some licensed online intensive outpatient programs can be accessed using your Smartphone or your computer.

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Outpatient Programs