Pros and Cons of Outpatient Alcohol Detox
Alcohol withdrawal syndrome can go from mildly unpleasant symptoms and cravings to severe and life threatening conditions in an instant. Whether you have tried to quit drinking before or not, outpatient detox may the solution to get you back on track and into the recovery that you need.
What Happens in Outpatient Alcohol Detox?
These programs are designed to help you get the alcohol out of your system as safely and comfortably as possible. Professionals will evaluate the levels of your alcohol abuse and design a detox plan that is most suitable to your needs. Withdrawals from alcohol can be dangerous, but, once you are stabilized physically and psychologically, you will be able to work with the counselors and other professionals to determine a plan for further treatment services.
Pros of Outpatient Alcohol Detox
- Detox safety is of utmost importance and outpatient programs are managed in ways similar to inpatient detox with the same safety measures in place.
- Flexibility in treatment options may be preferable to some individuals. They may need fulfill home or work obligations without having to remain in a treatment facility for an extended time. An inpatient detox may require that you enroll in programs lasting 30 days or more.
- Cost of an outpatient detox may be considerably less than an inpatient program because they usually have less overhead burdens or may be associated with community agencies or local churches and charities that help to fund the programs.
- Ease of access makes these programs special because there are usually more beds available through outpatient facilities because they have less time stay requirements.
- Support and guidance through the detox and help in determining the right treatment programs to attend afterward is essential. The counselors, clinicians, and therapists in outpatient detox centers often have variable ties to other community resources that provide extended services through their outpatient or outreach programs.
Cons of Outpatient Alcohol Detox
- Less treatment intensity may not be suitable for someone who has an extensive physical or mental health issue, history of heavy alcohol abuse, or repeated attempts to detox. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, heavy drinking is defined “as drinking 5 or more drinks on the same occasion on each of 5 or more days in the past 30 days.”
- Lesser amenities are common among outpatient detox facilities because their services are limited and they do not specialize in long term inpatient care.
- Immediate transition to treatment after detox may not be as smooth as an inpatient facility that has programs available on site. Sometimes, outpatient detox programs enlist the services of other outpatient service providers to help individuals through their ongoing treatment needs and delays may be possible, but irregular.