Is Intensive Inpatient Right for Me?
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Intensive inpatient treatment may be required in the following circumstances:
- The concerned patient is dealing with a co-occurring psychiatric disorder, such as bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, major depressive disorder, or PTSD. It is not uncommon for drug addicts and alcoholics to self-medicate undiagnosed or untreated mental health disorders. If an addict or alcoholic has a minor mental health disorder – such as depression or anxiety – they can typically be treated in residential treatment. However, if an addict or alcoholic also struggles with a severe psychiatric disorder, specialized care will be necessary. Most intensive inpatient treatment centers will have an on-site psychiatrist, who will be able to prescribe necessary medications. If underlying psychiatric disorders are left untreated, chances of relapse increase significantly.
- The individual is dealing with unresolved trauma. In some cases, people who have undergone severe emotional trauma will turn to drugs and alcohol in attempts to “forget” their experiences. The pain of memories may be too intense to bear, and rather than turn to therapeutic intervention or one-on-one counseling, the person will turn to drinking and drugs in order to self-anesthetize. Of course, using drugs and drinking to excess will not actually help alleviate the underlying grief – actually, it will make it far worse and more difficult to deal with in the long-run. In some cases, trauma will involve members of the opposite sex. For this reason, there are male-specific and female-specific intensive inpatient treatment centers – many which focus, in-depth, on gender-specific issues. For example, if a woman was raped when she was young, and she never properly dealt with the trauma, she will likely still have an aversion to men. Putting her in a co-ed treatment center will likely stunt her progress-making her uncomfortable and unable to feel completely safe and protected. Post-traumatic stress disorder of any kind will need to be treated as a co-occurring disorder, in a facility with trauma specialists on staff.
- Active drug addiction or alcoholism was especially severe. Addiction is far from a one-size-fits-all disease. There are those that will develop an addiction to heroin after using it for the very first time, and require treatment after less than a month of use. There are those who have been using opiates for years, and have finally hit rock bottom. Some alcoholics drink a bottle of wine every night for decades, and some wake up first thing in the morning and begin drinking vodka, straight from the bottle. The level of treatment will depend on how severe the addiction was, and for how long it has been going on. The person who has been using heroin for two-weeks, for example, will probably benefit from residential inpatient. The alcoholic who has been drinking from morning to night for 20 years will need intensive inpatient treatment.