What Does Outpatient Care for Co-occurring Disorders Involve?

Contributor: Crystal Karges, MS, RDN, IBCLC, Special Projects Coordinator at Eating Disorder Hope

Co-occurring disorders can create a complex web of factors that should all be addressed in treatment. This might include physical consequences that have resulted from mental illness and substance abuse, psychological disturbances, emotional wellness, social factors and more.

While treatment can vary across a spectrum of acuity, there are many options to help address the many aspects of co-occurring disorders.

Outpatient Treatment

If appropriate, outpatient treatment can be a helpful way for maintaining recovery and sobriety from co-occurring disorders. Typically, this level of care is suitable for individuals who have already been through higher levels of care and have reached some form of stability in their recovery.

Outpatient care may involve continued psychotherapy and counseling, a periodic visit with a medical doctor and/or psychiatrist, and/or a meeting with a Registered Dietitian. Support groups may also be an aspect of outpatient care that keeps an individual connected to individuals who will encourage ongoing sobriety and recovery.

Working With Specialized Professionals

A professional treatment team can guide you through the process of treatment and recovery for co-occurring disorders. It is important to work with specialized professionals who can best assess what level of care is right for you.

Explore the Outdoors - Woman in a ForestOnce you have stabilized from any medical complications or concerns and have progressed with therapy and counseling, outpatient care may be appropriate for you. However, this decision should be made with your treatment team and with their recommendations guiding the course of your treatment.

The Benefits Of Outpatient

Outpatient care may also be helpful for individuals who are able to return to some form of normalcy with daily living, in terms of working, school, and family life.

Outpatient care can usually be scheduled around times that fit with your current lifestyle, and this can be helpful if you have reestablished time with family, a career, or school routine.

With less supervision at the outpatient level of care, it is essential to stay consistent with treatment and with all appointments. Make your treatment a priority, even at the outpatient level of care. Co-occurring disorders are severe and complex by nature, regular support and treatment can help you maintain recovery for the long term.

Community Discussion – Share your thoughts here!

What has been your experience with outpatient treatment for co-occurring disorders? How has this assisted your recovery journey?

Last Updated & Reviewed By: Jacquelyn Ekern, MS, LPC on May 15th, 2015
Published on AddictionHope.com