What are the Different Types of Day Treatment Programs?

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  • Written By: Marisa O'Connor
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 17 October 2019
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There are many different types of day treatment programs, also called outpatient care. The two most common types of outpatient care are offered to people suffering from mild to moderate substance abuse or mental health problems. These programs were designed to help people who are capable of doing a majority of the work toward mental health between sessions. Day treatment is also a popular choice for parents who are struggling to help their child or children with mental health or behavioral problems.

Day treatment programs are generally available as an alternative to inpatient treatment or residential treatment programs. Inpatient care serves as 24-hour treatment for people with severe addictions and mental health disorders. Day treatment describes a broad method of therapy, which may include full-day, half-day, or hour-long sessions of therapy. The primary distinction here is that day treatment does not involve the patient remaining in the facility overnight.

One of the most common types of day treatment programs is available to help people with mild to moderate substance abuse problems. Outpatient drug and alcohol addiction treatment involves detoxification before treatment can begin, which actually does involve a hospital stay. The outpatient care typically involves weekly or semi-weekly individual therapy, group therapy, and educational programs. Patients are encouraged to develop social connections with other people trying to abstain from drugs and alcohol in order to prevent relapse.


Another common type of day treatment program helps people with mild to moderate mental health problems. Anxiety and depression are most often treated in an outpatient setting. These sessions usually last about an hour and may be weekly, semi-weekly or semi-monthly. The method of therapy chosen to treat the disorder will greatly depend on the competency of the therapist and the needs of the patient. Treatment may include group therapy, individual therapy, or some combination of the two.

Day treatment programs are an increasingly popular solution for parents who feel overwhelmed or incapable of helping their children with mental health or behavioral problems. Some of these programs are located at an office or facility, while others involve a therapist coming to the patient's home to work with him or her in a comfortable and familiar environment. The actual treatment will depend on the problems faced by the patient.

The vast majority of mental health treatment is done in an outpatient setting and is very effective. Some inpatient treatment is required for people whose mental health poses a threat to others or themselves. Other types of inpatient treatment programs are offered for people who become overwhelmed by their day-to-day lives. Day treatment programs are designed for people who need help understanding and changing their behavior or thinking but who are capable of doing the majority of work on their own.


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Post 3

@browncoat - Unfortunately, sometimes you need that time away from your life to detox in order to become strong enough to start your real rehabilitation. Day treatment programs are good for people who aren't going through massive withdrawal, but for anyone who is, it could be better to either go to a hospital or check into a clinic completely for a few days.

It's possible to go through it at home and for some people that might be the best option. My sister had to go through opium addiction withdrawal at home and she managed to kick the habit. But it's hard. Very, very hard and it can be made harder if you're surrounded by people who have no idea what

is going on, or who think the solution is to give you more drugs.

Unless you have more willpower than most human beings you are better off getting yourself into a monitored program for a few days at least. And after that a day program will certainly help.

Post 2

@bythewell - If anything I think day treatment can be more effective for a lot of people because it involves both a treatment environment and the home environment.

The problem with drug abuse treatment programs is that they can take the person involved completely away from temptation and then expect them to just be able to deal with it when they return. It's much easier to refrain from taking drugs if there are no drugs around to take and no one around you is using.

Post 1

Day treatment isn't going to be helpful unless the person taking it is extremely committed to changing their life outside of the clinic. It's all too easy to slip into the habit of doing right during the day and then letting your good habits go again at night when you return to your ordinary life and are surrounded by the same problems and the same people.

Sometimes there isn't a choice and you have to do day treatment because you can't afford to stay at a clinic or you've got responsibilities that can't be put off. But you've got to remember that it's intended to shape your whole life rather than just the hours that you're actually on site.

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