Substance abuse is a problem which affects thousands of people all around the world. While most people begin drinking or using drugs as a way to ease tensions from work or personal struggles, there comes a time when casual drinking transitions into destructive behavior. As a person continues abusing substances, their mind and body undergo changes making it harder to quit on their own.
For family members and friends of a substance abuser, witnessing their downward spiral can be unbelievably difficult to watch. From wanting to voice concerns to fear of being completely shut out, interacting with an abuser is a juggling act. Seeking help from a doctor or medical professional is the first major step towards recovery.
When a substance abuser is ready to recover, choosing the right program is incredibly important. With inpatient and outpatient options, medical professionals evaluate a patient’s physical, medical and mental histories in order to come up with the best course of action. One such course is known as a day treatment program.
What is a Day Treatment (PHP)?
After a patient has gone through a detox and purged themselves of residual substances, the next phase of recovery is broken down into either inpatient or outpatient treatment plans. For those who suffer from severe addiction, inpatient treatment plans are recommended as patients are in constant contact with trained professionals and removed from potentially toxic environments.
For those who suffer from less severe addictions, outpatient treatment programs are viable choices. Outpatient treatment programs allow patients an opportunity to stay at home and attend to their responsibilities and obligations while still being accountable and checking into a treatment center for a few hours a day. One such type of outpatient therapy program is known as Day Treatment Program or Partial Hospitalization Program, often called PHP. This type of outpatient treatment program is structured for people who require more intensive levels of care than a typical outpatient program.
Day Treatment Programs (PHP) are for patients who do not need 24 hour supervision. Essentially a day hospital, day treatments are structured day programs that provide several hours of therapy and skill building practices to patients. The ultimate goal of a day treatment is to facilitate recovery in an environment which creates an effective mode of transition back into the real world. By having intensive therapy sessions multiple times a week and during the day, a day treatment is structured in a manner which encourages patients to actively use tools acquired during their sessions.
How Does Day Treatment Work?
While all day treatment programs differ depending on the facility, patients typically go to a recovery center 3-5 times a week. During these sessions, they spend 4-6 hours per day at their facility. Every patient that enters a day treatment is embraced with compassion and support. From the very first day of their enrollment, all treatments are structured to show patients how to be their own advocate and cheerleader.
Another big concept of day treatment programs is the idea of “showing up for yourself.” During therapy sessions at day treatment, trained professionals help patients understand that the only way for their treatment to truly be successful is if they fully invest in wellness.
Depending on the type of day treatment program, patients may be required to live in sober housing facilities. Without substances disrupting their train of thought, patients are able to fully take on their sobriety. Some facilities may offer 12 Step meetings where patients are able to witness real stories of men and women who address both good and bad aspects of their recovery journey.
Through these kinds of meetings, patients are able to pinpoint and slowly chip away at their own behavioral patterns. Understanding how the brain works is an empowering moment for many recovering substance abusers because it allows for self-reflection and growth.
Therapy sessions also show patients that they are neither unique or alone in their substance abuse journey. A major factor which stops substance abusers from seeking help is the shame and fear they feel when having to admit that they have a problem. In day treatment programs, a sense of community is created, as newly enrolled patients are able to rub shoulders with men and women who have rebuilt their lives.
In a day treatment, professionals equip patients with foundational knowledge and skills needed in order to be successful. Just as in building a house, the foundation must be solid before construction can begin.
Frequently Asked Questions about Day Treatment
How Long Does Treatment take?
The length of treatment varies depending on an individual needs and a professional’s recommendation. Since every day treatment program is approached differently, the length of time in which a patient stays may also vary. Typically, the structure of a day treatment is generally 3-5 days of treatment throughout the week, each lasting for 4-6 hours.
Who Should Participate in Day Treatment?
When determining who should participate in day treatment programs, professionals will take several factors into consideration. One of the most important factors is whether a patient is in need of close medical supervision. Because day treatment programs are outpatient in nature, a candidate has to be deemed capable of being alone at night.
Another important factor is if the patient needs more support than what traditional outpatient programs provide. Normal outpatient programs require patients to come into treatment facilities once or twice a week. day treatment programs are more intensive, requiring 4 or 5 days of availability.
How Much Does a Day Treatment Program Cost?
The cost of a day treatment will vary depending on the length of your program and how much your insurance provider covers. Generally speaking, a day treatment costs less than inpatient treatment programs because costs of room and board aren’t in question. Since addiction treatment is now a part of most health benefit packages, insurance companies are required to cover substance abuse treatment programs as they would any other medical condition.
It should be noted that some treatment facilities do not accept Medicare or Medicaid. When speaking to a doctor, make sure that they find a facility that accepts your insurance plan before enrolling.
Treatments Offered in Day Treatment
As previously stated, people who enroll in day treatment programs are part of an intensive and comprehensive recovery program. Through these programs, patients work with many different professionals which include doctors, therapists and psychiatrists. Because patients are required to attend treatment 4 to 5 times per week for 4 to 6 hours, several treatments and therapies are provided during those times.
A major component of day treatment programs are individual and group therapy. During individual therapy, patients meet with a therapist or addiction counselor one-on-one. The benefit of individual therapy sessions is that a patient is able to take their time and work through unhealthy trends in their behavior while having a therapists full attention. Professionals are also able to equip patients with tools needed to maintain sobriety.
In group counseling, these sessions are moderated by a professional and tend to focus on a specific topic per discussion. Patients are encouraged to participate and actively engage in discussions. Topics covered during group sessions can range from stress management to relapse prevention.
Another component of day treatment programs are aftercare planning. A team of professionals closely monitor the progression of each patient and come up with an aftercare plan. This plan consists of relapse prevention tactics, coping strategies and continued support after discharge. Making sure that patients stay engaged and continue seeking support is a major part of aftercare planning.
Several day treatment programs also provide holistic treatments. In order to help patients find their way, holistic treatments like yoga, meditation, fitness classes and music therapy are commonly used. Holistic treatments help patients exercise their body and mind and in doing so, find clarity in a foggy situation.
While not applicable to all patients, many day treatment programs are able to treat people who suffer from a dual diagnosis. If a patient has both an addiction and a psychiatric condition, a day only treatment program like a day treatment could help address both issues at once.
Getting Help for Addiction
When it comes to addiction, one of the most difficult things for an addict to do is admit that there is a problem. Whether due to fear of being shunned or anger over life choices, many addicts believe that seeking help is an admission of weakness. However for those ready to take the next step in their recovery journey, reaching out to a trusted doctor is incredibly important.
While the internet provides a lot of answers, hearing the opinions of a professional will help ease the transition into a treatment facility. During initial meetings with health care professionals, a detailed evaluation of a patient’s physical, mental and psychological history will be performed. The results of these examinations and meetings will determine the best course of action to overcome the addiction.
The road to recovery is one that has many highs and lows. Taking the time to go through a rehab program, such as a day treatment program, equips a recovering addict with tools necessary to overcome the urge to relapse. Listening to a professional and sticking to an aftercare plan will help subside the stresses of sobriety.