The first phase of inpatient treatment programs usually includes detoxification (detox) to treat a patient’s physical addiction. During detox, the patient is slowly weaned off the addictive substance, which in many cases causes withdrawal symptoms. For certain types of addictive substances, withdrawal symptoms can be very severe or even life threatening. Detox under medical
supervision in a professional facility provides the most safe and comfortable setting in which to begin recovery. Patients in treatment for behavioral addictions, such as gambling or sex, usually do not require detox (unless they have a concurrent substance addiction disorder).
Treating the psychological addiction is usually the second step in an inpatient treatment program. In many cases, this phase of recovery involves a combination of medical, psychological, and peer support. Most inpatient treatment programs tailor treatment to the needs of individual patients, adjusting treatment according to what the patient needs at a particular point in their recovery. Individual counseling sessions, group therapy, life skills courses, and complementary activities are generally included to help patients regain the skills needed to function at home, at work, and in society.