Is Outpatient Drug Rehab Right for You? How to Make the Best Decision

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Choosing the right type of drug rehab program is a critical step in the recovery journey. There is a wide variety of treatment programs and services, and while this can feel overwhelming, it also means that you can find something tailored towards your needs.

For many individuals, an outpatient drug rehab program makes the most sense because it’s cost-effective, flexible and allows them to continue working or going to school. However, outpatient rehab is not the right fit for everyone.

Let’s learn more about what to expect from outpatient drug rehab and the factors to consider when making your decision.

What is a Drug and Alcohol Outpatient Program?

An outpatient drug and alcohol rehab offers evidence-based treatment for substance use disorders. Unlike inpatient drug rehab, this type of treatment does not require you to live onsite. Instead, you will travel to your meetings and therapy sessions at a convenient time during the day or evening, and then you’ll return home to be with your family.

While each person is unique, outpatient drug rehab is best for those who have a mild addiction and can be held accountable for attending their meetings and therapy sessions, as well as practicing healthy habits at home. They should also have a good support system and a safe living environment.

Because outpatient treatment is flexible, it can be a ‘step down’ from an inpatient program. Some people spend a month or two in outpatient care, while others stay in this program for much longer. An intensive outpatient program will meet most days of the week, while a standard program may only meet once or twice a week.

Is Outpatient Drug Rehab Right For You?

Choosing the right rehabilitation program will increase your chances for long-term success. Here are some factors to consider when deciding whether or not outpatient care is right for you.

Level of Addiction

Outpatient rehab is generally best suited for individuals with mild to moderate addiction. Those with severe addiction often require a more intensive level of care, such as inpatient or residential treatment. Aside from this, we also recommend outpatient treatment to individuals who have a stable home environment, a strong support system and a commitment to recovery.

Level of Support

The level of support you need is another important consideration. If you are doing well in your recovery and have a strong support system, you will likely benefit from the flexibility that outpatient rehab offers. You can gradually transition to everyday life, including working, going to school or handling household responsibilities.

However, if you need more support, a structured inpatient treatment facility will probably be best. This setting offers a higher level of care, along with 24-hour support.


Flexibility is a huge benefit of outpatient treatment. These programs are designed to be flexible, as they help prepare people in recovery for their transition to everyday life. Rather than completing an inpatient program and jumping right back into life, outpatient programs make this transition slow and steady.

For instance, you will be able to live at home and be an active member in your family while also receiving individual therapy, group therapy and other support services. If you face new challenges, you’ll be able to discuss them during your meetings and therapy sessions and find ways to work through them.

Mental Health Needs

If you have a co-occurring condition, you may require more intensive treatment than outpatient rehab can provide. However, once you are properly diagnosed and stable, outpatient rehab will be able to handle your needs just fine. In fact, they are excellent programs that help people manage their mental health problems while sticking to their aftercare plans.

If you have a history of mental health issues, it’s important to ensure that the outpatient program you choose can provide the appropriate level of care and support. Pura Vida Recovery has experience with mental illness, and we are comfortable treating and managing co-occurring disorders.

History of Relapse

Do you have a history of relapse? If so, you may need a more intensive level of care. But, if you recently relapsed and need support to get back on track, an outpatient program may be an excellent fit. You don’t have to return to an inpatient program, but you can receive the support and guidance you need to get back on the road to recovery.

Outpatient Drug and Alcohol Rehab in Santa Rosa CA

Outpatient drug rehab can be an effective treatment option for individuals with mild to moderate addiction, who have a stable home environment and strong support system. However, it may not be the right choice for everyone.

Consider your level of addiction, support system, flexibility needs, mental health history and history of relapse when deciding if outpatient drug rehab is the best option for you. To learn more about the outpatient programs through Pura Vida Recovery in Santa Rosa CA, contact our admissions team today.