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What is Inpatient Rehab?

Opting for an inpatient rehab for substance abuse means that you live at the facility for the duration of the program, which typically runs for 30, 60, or 90 days. There you will receive 24/7 care and oversight, a myriad of therapeutic interventions and modalities, and a structured routine to facilitate recovery. Under the umbrella of inpatient rehab, there are several different types of programs.

Inpatient Rehab Overview

Of the two treatment settings, inpatient and outpatient, inpatient is the more intensive and structured treatment option. You reside at the rehab facility while recovering from a drug or alcohol addiction and attend various classes and therapy sessions throughout the day and evening. There is typically a strict daily routine that all patients must follow, as well as a list of rehab rules they must adhere to.

Unlike outpatient treatment, people attending inpatient rehab typically cannot continue working or attending school while in recovery. They also may need to make arrangements for childcare or pet care for the time that they are in inpatient rehab. While preparing for inpatient treatment may seem overwhelming or challenging, it is ultimately a great option for people struggling with a substance addiction. The routine and structure allow patients to follow solely on their recovery, in a space that is free of distractions and triggers. Plus, most inpatient treatment programs provide a serene and peaceful environment that can be conducive to healing.

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Types of Inpatient Treatment

There are several different types of inpatient treatment to consider, including:

  • Hospital-based: Hospital-based inpatient programs provide around-the-clock medical care and supervision, a combination of therapies, and therapeutic and recreational activities. They are the best setting if you have a medical condition or are worried about medical emergencies that may arise during treatment.
  • Residential: Residential treatment programs involve living at the facility, but instead of a hospital-based environment, it is a home-like setting. You receive medical oversight but to a lesser extent than a hospital-based program.
  • Luxury rehab: These rehabs, which are more expensive than standard inpatient programs, offer upscale amenities and features in a resort-like environment.
  • Executive rehab: Executive rehabs give working professionals a chance to continue working while recovering from an addiction. Features include private workspaces and high-speed internet, as well as upscale amenities that may be offered at luxury treatment.
  • Holistic rehab: Holistic rehabs take a whole-person approach to addiction recovery, offering a combination of evidence-based therapies, such as psychotherapy, with alternative and complementary interventions, such as yoga, mindfulness, acupuncture, art therapy, music therapy, and equine therapy.

For help finding an inpatient rehab that’s right for you or a loved one, call our 24/7 helpline at 800-908-4823 (Who Answers?) . One of our rehab support specialists is happy to assist you.


One of the most beneficial aspects of inpatient rehab is the separation from your everyday drinking or drug-using environment. Being removed from that setting can make it much easier to focus on your recovery without distractions or triggers. At an inpatient rehab, you can build the foundation for lifelong recovery by learning healthy coping strategies, drug refusal skills, impulse control and emotional regulation skills, and sober social strategies. These new skills can help prepare you for transitioning back into your daily environment in which you may experience cravings or stressors that make you want to return to use.

Other pros of inpatient rehab include:

  • 24/7 treatment and monitoring
  • Medical detox services are often available to keep you safe
  • A highly-structured daily routine
  • A combination of therapies and classes are offered
  • Can meet new sober friends who become part of your support system

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While inpatient rehab is an excellent option for anyone looking to recover from a substance use disorder, it does have its disadvantages, such as:

Therapies and Services Offered at Inpatient Rehab

A holistic inpatient rehab is going to offer different therapies and services than a standard inpatient program or a Christian rehab program (which may include spiritual classes or religious studies). But no matter the type of treatment program, it should offer evidence-based therapies and interventions that help facilitate recovery. Examples include:

  • Medical detox: The first step of addiction treatment is often medical detox, which keeps you comfortable and safe during the withdrawal process. The treatment team administers withdrawal medications and provides supportive care. If you’re addicted to benzodiazepines, alcohol, or opioids, you’ll likely want to receive medical detox.
  • Individual therapy: Common therapies for addiction include cognitive-behavioral therapy, dialectical behavior therapy, and contingency management, all of which provide you with the skills you need to obtain and maintain sobriety.
  • Group therapy: A mental health or substance abuse professional facilitates group counseling in which patients have a safe space to role play various situations, practice drug refusal skills, and to learn and build sober social skills.
  • Family counseling: Family counseling helps all members of the family to heal from substance use, trauma, and unaddressed mental health disorders. It can also repair dysfunctional relationships.
  • Addiction treatment medications: If applicable, addiction treatment medications may be used to prevent relapse and relieve cravings. Currently, there are only medications approved for opioid addiction and alcohol use disorder.1

Who is Inpatient Best For?

Inpatient rehab is a beneficial option for anyone struggling with an alcohol or drug addiction; however, it may be particularly helpful for people who:

  • Have a severe substance addiction
  • Have a polysubstance addiction
  • Have a co-occurring mental health condition, such as depression or bipolar disorder (known as a dual diagnosis)
  • Have a comorbid medical condition that requires 24/7 care
  • Have previously dropped out of outpatient treatment
  • Don’t have reliable transportation to attend outpatient
  • Don’t have a sober support system at home
  • Don’t have s stable housing situation
  • Benefit from strict routines and structure

If you’re still unsure which treatment setting is best for you, you can always schedule an appointment with your therapist or doctor. They can conduct a substance abuse evaluation and then refer you to an appropriate treatment program based on your assessment. For assistance finding an inpatient rehab, you can call our confidential helpline at 800-908-4823 (Who Answers?) . One of our knowledgeable treatment support specialists can help you find the right program for you, whether it’s close to home or several states away.

Staying Sober After Inpatient Rehab

Once you complete an inpatient rehab program, you will want to continue receiving addiction treatment services in the form of aftercare. Aftercare involves ongoing support that can empower you and keep you on the right track well after treatment is over. Much like treatment, the right aftercare options for you depend on your needs and preferences. Some options for ongoing support include:

  • Alumni programs through your rehab
  • Alcoholics Anonymous (AA)
  • Narcotics Anonymous (NA)
  • SMART Recovery
  • Individual therapy
  • Group counseling
  • Sober living homes

It doesn’t have to be one or the other—you can utilize a number of these aftercare services to set yourself up for success post-rehab. And you may want to try several out before you know what works and doesn’t work for you.


  1. National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2014). Addiction Medications.

Where do calls go?

Calls to numbers on a specific treatment center listing will be routed to that treatment center. Calls to any general helpline will be answered or returned by one of the treatment providers listed, each of which is a paid advertiser: ARK Behavioral Health, Recovery Helpline, Alli Addiction Services.

By calling the helpline you agree to the terms of use. We do not receive any commission or fee that is dependent upon which treatment provider a caller chooses. There is no obligation to enter treatment.

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