top of page

Inpatient v Outpatient Rehab: Which is Best Solution for Your Eating Disorder?

Once you have decided to seek help for a mental or physical health problem you have already made the first step.Anorexia, Bulimia, Obesity, binge eating, etc. can all be signs of a food addiction. When these disorders/addictions get severe enough, it can be time for rehab to help you break free from the unhealthy lifestyle, or unhealthy habits like stress eating. These rehab treatments can be either inpatient or outpatient. There are advantages and disadvantages for each and knowing more about them will be helpful in deciding on which is best for you.

What is Inpatient Rehab?

Inpatient rehab is when you check into a rehab center to get the treatment you need. In doing this, you will basically put a hold on your life for a determined amount of time to get the help you need.

What happens in Inpatient Treatment?

According to, the start of the inpatient treatment involves getting the person to a healthy weight and back to a reasonable level. The act of binge eating or starvation affects the neurochemicals in the brain which makes treatment impossible.

How long do you need to stay in Inpatient Treatment?

The amount of time you would remain in treatment varies. In traditional rehab, the stay would be for about 30 days. However, in the past few years, there have been some different treatment plans used with visits ranging from as little as three days to a year. This form of rehab is generally for people who are still at risk and are unable to control their addiction.

What are the Pros of Inpatient Treatment?

The most obvious benefit from this form of treatment is the patient is placed in a controlled environment. There they will be removed from any negative influences that might enable the bad lifestyle choices that lead to them being admitted in the first place.

What are the Cons of Inpatient Treatment?

When entering inpatient rehab, you would need to basically put your life on hold. You need to go to bed, get up, and eat at a time that is determined for them. You are not allowed to leave as you want, so you would need to take leave from your job. Do not let this discourage you, as getting healthy and creative a positive lifestyle change is more important than anything at this point.

What is Outpatient Rehab?

When attending outpatient treatment, you would continue to live your life and would attend treatment programs outside of your working hours. You would receive high-quality care that is flexible. The care includes a variety of services including group and individual counseling, 12-step meetings, strategies to prevent relapse, and recovery training. Generally, from NEDA, this is best when “Patient is psychiatrically stable and has symptoms under sufficient control to be able to function in normal social, educational, or vocational situations and continue to make progress in recovery.”

What are the Pros of Outpatient Treatment?

Outpatient treatment allows you to continue working and doing the things you usually would do while getting the treatment you need. Having the normalcy of regular life can also help with your treatment, particularly when it comes to stress eaters.

What are the Cons of Outpatient Treatment?

While you will get the therapy and care you need, there are temptations in your everyday world that could make a recovery a little more difficult. These temptations are not found in an inpatient environment.

If you have decided that you need to get help for your addiction, you will need to determine if you would like to go through inpatient and outpatient rehab. Speaking with a counselor or a rehab center will help. From Midwest Institute for Addiction, centers assess “your physical health, psychiatric health, social health, family health, financial issues, legal issues, and job-related concerns,” all of which can play a factor in your addiction. Knowing more about each will help give you the information you need to decide which is best for you.

43 views0 comments



The information in this post is being provided to you for educational and informational purposes only. It is being provided to you to educate you about women's wellness and as a self-help tool for your own use. It is not a substitute for medical or health advice from a professional who is aware of the facts and circumstances of your individual situation. This information is to be used at your own risk based on your own judgment. For the full Disclaimer, please click here.

bottom of page