Treatment for an alcohol or drug problem entails removing the client from the parts of their life that contribute to the desire to abuse illicit substances.
For some clients, they have some things that work in their favor to the point where a clean break is not necessary. Outpatient treatment centers are a way for these clients to control and manage their addictive impulses while still being a part of the outside world.
As would be the case for medical concerns, inpatient care describes service that requires the client be admitted into a treatment facility, which could be a hospital but could also be a specialized facility. Most locations require that a client has to be checked in for more than two consecutive days for the care to be considered “inpatient”; this has a significant impact on insurance plans and the cost of treatment.Medicare.gov explains that a doctor’s note is one of the factors in determining whether a patient is eligible for inpatient treatment.
For substance abuse treatment, a doctor might recommend inpatient care if the client is so physically and psychologically dependent on a particular drug (or drugs) that they are at too much risk if they tried to break their addiction while living at home. The process of removing toxic substances from the body – especially a body that cannot function without them – is complicated, painful, and sometimes dangerous. Clients who have been addicted to their substances for a period of time, or whose addiction is quite significant, need medical help breaking the physical need for another hit. Such help is best provided over a period of time and in an area where there is constant medical supervision. Since this is unlikely to take place in a home environment, inpatient care at a specialized treatment facility or hospital is the best choice.
Another reason why a doctor might recommend inpatient treatment is if the client’s home situation is not psychologically conducive to recovery. Given that detoxification entails uncomfortable drug withdrawal, clients need to recover in stable and peaceful surroundings, preferably with people who can support them emotionally, and not cause stress or use drugs in their presence.In some home environments, where there is the open consumption of drugs or alcohol, abuse, neglect, or a high level of stress, a client who is recovering might feel compelled to abuse substances again because these could be the kinds of triggers that contributed to the addiction taking hold in the first place. If a doctor believes that relapse would be imminent if the client is discharged into that kind of situation, then inpatient treatment would be recommended.