What’s the Difference Between Inpatient vs Outpatient Mental Health Services?

If you need help with psychiatric, emotional, or substance abuse problems, you may need to learn the difference between inpatient vs. outpatient mental health care. While some of the programs and therapies are the same, the intensity is different. Through the right care, you can gain control of your life again.

What’s the Difference Between Inpatient and Outpatient Mental Health Care?

While each of these programs offers a number of exceptional benefits, the main difference between inpatient vs. outpatient mental health programs is their intensity. Below are some things to consider when deciding between inpatient and outpatient  mental health services.

1. Sleeping Arrangements

The biggest and most obvious difference between inpatient and outpatient mental health care is where you sleep at night. An inpatient program expects you to sleep at the treatment program. This means you will have around-the-clock access to medical care and supervision if you need it.

2. Relapse Opportunities

If you have struggled to stay sober in the past, inpatient treatment may be the best option. Because it’s required to remain at the site 24/7, it is harder for you to relapse.

3. Outside Responsibilities

Some people are unable to remain at a treatment center because they need to take care of their kids at night or handle a project at work. With outpatient care, you can manage your family, work, and school responsibilities while you pursue treatment. Then, you can come to the treatment center for a few hours each day or several times a week.

4. Cost

While each program is different, another key difference between inpatient vs. outpatient mental health is the cost. In most cases, outpatient programs will be less expensive than inpatient programs. However, you may also be able to lower the cost of both programs through insurance coverage or financial aid.

5. Multiple Mental Health Conditions

Sometimes, clients need help with more than one mental health condition or dealing with substance abuse. In these cases, inpatient programs are typically a better choice because they provide more comprehensive options and therapies. Additionally, you can get more support for multiple disorders with an inpatient program.

6. Stress

If you have an extremely stressful life, you may want to use inpatient vs. outpatient mental health programs. For many people, stress triggers relapses and mental health issues. By participating in an inpatient program, you can temporarily avoid these stressors as you heal.

How to Choose Which Type of Care You Need

After learning the difference between inpatient and outpatient mental health programs, the next step is figuring out which program works best for your needs. As you consider different programs, you should think about the following factors.

  • The cost
  • Your financial aid options
  • The number of conditions you need to treat
  • Your outside responsibilities
  • Your history of past relapses
  • The intensity of care you need

As a general rule, inpatient treatment is better if you want more intensive care and support. People also use inpatient mental health programs when they need help with multiple conditions.

Discover the Best Mental Health Treatment Programs

If you or a loved one suffers from mental health or substance abuse disorders, you aren’t alone. With the help of the professionals at Aliso Ridge Behavioral Health, you can begin your recovery today. To learn more about our inpatient vs. outpatient mental health programs, call 949-900-8426 today.

Leave a Reply