It's not uncommon for people to experience mental health difficulties. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, 20% of people will deal with some type of mental illness in their lives. Mild cases of mental illness can be managed through counseling and lifestyle changes. However, more severe cases often require additional interventions. Intensive outpatient treatment is right for some patients, and it might be the best option for you. Here are three facts you may want to know about intensive outpatient treatment clinics:
1. They can help you transition back to a normal routine after hospitalization.
Hospitalization is sometimes necessary if your mental healthcare provider believes you're a danger to yourself or others. There's no shame in being hospitalized for mental illness; it's very similar to being hospitalized for any other life-threatening condition. However, after hospitalization, some patients have a difficult time transitioning back to everyday life. They may relapse without proper care.
An intensive outpatient treatment clinic is often just the intermediary step that's needed. Patients live at home during treatment, but they return to the clinic every day to participate in therapeutic activities. Outpatient treatment can help patients keep up with medication schedules until they're able to do so without assistance.
2. They provide a safe, supportive place for you to find healing.
While mental illness is nothing to be ashamed of, it can be misunderstood by people who don't understand. In an outpatient treatment clinic, you'll be surrounded by staff members, doctors, and patients who understand your struggles. Many patients find it easier to open up and heal when they aren't forced to contend with the stigmatization of mental illness during their recovery. Counselors do their best to create a safe space for all patients, regardless of their age, sex, financial status, or sexual orientation.
3. They can teach you important coping skills.
As with any treatment program, the purpose of intensive outpatient treatment is to allow you to live a full and fulfilling life. You won't always have intensive therapy, so during your time in the clinic, counselors will help you build your coping skills. They can teach you grounding techniques that will help you manage depression spirals and anxiety attacks. Increasing your arsenal of coping mechanisms can help you avoid rehospitalization. Counselors will use techniques like cognitive behavioral therapy and dialectical behavior therapy. Psychiatric drugs may also be part of your treatment, but medication isn't a quick fix. Instead, it's a tool that can be used to stabilize your moods while you work on yourself in therapy.
To seek treatment, contact your local intensive outpatient treatment center.