Choosing the Right Treatment Path: Inpatient vs. Outpatient Rehab for Seniors

There isn’t a contest between inpatient vs. outpatient rehab; both types of programs help seniors achieve their recovery milestones. Of course, one program might be a better fit for you and wherever you happen to be in the recovery process. At WhiteSands, we offer both types of rehab programs, so we’re able to accommodate clients anywhere in their recovery journey. 

Substance addiction affects millions of people nationwide (worldwide too!). In the U.S., more than 22 million people are battling a substance use disorder like drug addiction or alcoholism. We offer comprehensive treatment that includes inpatient rehab programs, outpatient rehab programs, aftercare, and clinically supervised detox. We can provide a level of support that’s ideal for each client. 

At WhiteSands, we customize treatment for each patient. We have the medical capability to offer dual diagnosis treatment and medication-assisted treatment. Our treatment modalities include medically traditional evidence-based therapies, holistic therapies, and alternative treatments. Together, our therapeutic approaches support whole-person health and well-being. 

If you are searching for high-quality addiction treatment for seniors, look no further than WhiteSands. Our rehab clinicians are licensed and experienced. We offer both individual and group therapies. Seniors can expect to find many recovery-friendly amenities at our rehab campus such as fitness equipment and nutritious meals. At WhiteSands, we treat everyone with dignity and respect. Let us help you achieve your recovery goals with programming that’s tailored for you. 


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Overview of Inpatient Rehab for Seniors

Inpatient rehab may be the ideal treatment course for seniors if they are unstable and have a high risk of relapse. Inpatient rehab is a great option for anyone who wants to have time and space to immerse themselves in their therapy without distractions. Our rehab center offers 24-hour support and supervision and features a highly structured program that includes morning and afternoon therapy sessions punctuated by scheduled downtime. Our rooms are comfortably furnished and we feature a wealth of amenities for seniors to enjoy. Getting away from a negative lifestyle is a helpful way to restart life, forge new, healthy habits, and move the recovery process forward. 

Overview of Outpatient Rehab for Seniors

seniors outpatient vs inpatient rehab

Many seniors also prefer outpatient rehab. It’s not uncommon for inpatient clients to transition in time to outpatient therapy as their support needs change. For outpatient treatment, seniors reside at home but commute to rehab for daily or weekly therapy sessions. Each person has a different treatment course because we customize treatment plans for each individual. Outpatient treatment allows people to continue to work or attend to their family responsibilities or other obligations. Yet, the ongoing support that outpatient rehab affords ensures that clients get the help they need to continue to achieve recovery milestones and rebuild their lives in the context of sobriety. 

Key Benefits of Inpatient Rehab

One of the main benefits of inpatient rehab is that it’s staffed 24-7. This is especially important for clients who are undergoing medical detox and may be experiencing withdrawal symptoms. Our clinicians can prescribe medications to reduce these symptoms and promote clients’ comfort. Another benefit of inpatient rehab is that it removes clients, albeit temporarily, from outside temptations at a crucial point in their recovery journey. Clients can work to achieve stability by focusing on their therapy. By the time they complete their inpatient therapy, they’ve developed new strategies and skills for preventing relapse and continuing their recovery progress. 

Key Benefits of Outpatient Rehab

There are also benefits of outpatient rehab. Seniors may feel more comfortable residing at home. Outpatient rehab allows clients to live at home and attend daily or weekly therapy sessions. Outpatient treatment plans can be customized for clients just as inpatient plans are. Another benefit of outpatient treatment is that clients can bring current issues to therapy to get help to cope with or resolve them. Real-time support can help clients maintain their recovery journey and ward off relapse. 

Limitations of Inpatient Rehab

Inpatient rehab may not be the ideal fit for every client. That’s why we offer both inpatient and outpatient programming at our treatment center. One of the limitations of inpatient rehab is that it can be challenging for seniors to reside somewhere that isn’t their home. Some rules and regulations may feel foreign to clients. We understand and do our utmost to ensure the comfort of all of our clients. Some people also find that the artificial environment of inpatient rehab is too removed from their real life–from the reality of living day to day in their homes, and worry about transitioning back to their everyday lives. Although inpatient rehab may pose some limitations, it can provide people with a strong foundation for building their new sober life.

Limitations of Outpatient Rehab

Outpatient rehab also has some limitations. Because clients attend rehab for their treatment sessions, they’re left with time on their own. During their time away from treatment, they will have to prevent relapse on their own–at least without the benefit of rehab staff support such as is available during inpatient treatment on a 24-hour basis. Clients will need to manage their cravings and triggers effectively to maintain their recovery progress. Clients may also not form close bonds with other clients as often happens during inpatient treatment programs. Inpatient rehab offers clients time to form new friends with their peers; there’s less opportunity for that (though it certainly does occur) during outpatient treatment. 

Who Should Consider Inpatient Rehab for Addiction Treatment?

Many people begin therapy on an inpatient basis because it offers the highest degree of support. A person who is unstable because of intense cravings, withdrawal symptoms, or emotions can benefit from the 24-hour support and supervision that accompany inpatient programs like medical detox and rehab. Someone who has been addicted for years or is at high risk of relapse may find that inpatient treatment is a better fit for their needs at the start of their recovery journey. Also, clients who have an unstable home life that’s not conducive to recovery should consider enrolling in an inpatient treatment program. 

If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.

About the Author

Jackie has been involved in the substance abuse and addiction treatment sector for over five years and this is something that she is truly eager about. She has a passion for writing and continuously works to create informative pieces that not only educate and inform the public about the disease of addiction but also provide solutions for those who struggle with drug and alcohol abuse.