What is IOP Treatment?

An Intensive Outpatient Program, or IOP for teens, is an intensive form of outpatient treatment for mental health or substance use disorders. For most, the intensive outpatient program is a step down from residential treatment at Turning Point Healing Centers, where they have a full day of treatment. During the IOP phase, clients receive a minimum of  9 hours of treatment per week (three to five sessions of 3 hours each) usually in the afternoon or evening. During IOP treatment participants typically only visit the treatment facility for scheduled therapy. Participants who live out of the area may also attend via telehealth.

The Levels of Care at Turning Point Healing Centers: 

  • Residential Treatment
  • Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP)
  • Outpatient Therapy

Differences Between IOP Treatment and Residential Treatment

The primary difference between IOP treatment for teens and our residential phases of care is the number of treatment hours per week. The Residential Program consists of 44 hours of treatment per week, while the IOP is between 9-15 hours per week. The other key difference is accommodations. During residential treatment, patients receive all inclusive accommodations which include mental health or substance use disorder treatment throughout the week. They live at our facility, sleep there overnight, and have their meals and activities there. 

Mental health IOP or substance use disorder IOP for teens and adolescents is a supplement to residential treatment. Most patients begin with their residential phase of care. When residential care is completed, they move on to our intensive outpatient program. During IOP treatment, adolescents and teens can return home and resume school or work, but continue to benefit from mental health or substance use disorder treatment three times a week. This flexible treatment arrangement acts as a supportive bridge back to everyday life.

Intensive Outpatient Program at Turning Point Healing Centers

During the IOP phase of care, the focus is on applying what you have learned during your treatment in everyday life. The IOP arrangement also makes it possible for you to bring real-world challenges or victories into the therapeutic space to process and learn from them. 

By the time you reach your IOP phase, we will have worked together for some time and your treatment plan will be well underway. You might think of the IOP period a bit like training wheels. Most of your day and week are free so school, work or family responsibilities can resume, but a connection to our therapeutic support remains. 

Three times a week for two hours at a time you will attend group and/or individual therapy at Turning Point Healing Centers. This may be in person if you live locally, or via telehealth if you do not. This gives you the opportunity to return to everyday life and ‘test drive’ your recovery while remaining connected to support from us. 

The Intensive Outpatient Program at Turning Point Healing Centers: 

  • Delivers more intensive therapeutic support than conventional outpatient counseling.
  • Provides continuing care and support for mental health and substance use disorders.
  • Builds confidence by helping adolescents and teens return to school or work.
  • Gives patients the opportunity to bring real-world challenges into the treatment space.

Residential Treatment Lays A Foundation For Recovery

During residential treatment for mental health or a substance use disorder, adolescents and teens sleep at our medical treatment facility overnight as well as attend all of their individual therapy and group therapy sessions there. It is an immersive experience in a safe and nurturing therapeutic environment. We believe this is the best possible arrangement for teens to begin their recovery from a substance use disorder or mental health treatment. 

The residential phase of care is where preliminary assessments and evaluations occur. At Turning Point Healing Centers we take great care to understand each individual’s unique story and set of circumstances. We use what we learn to build a highly individualized treatment program for each patient that addresses their specific needs. In residential mental health treatment, teens with depression, anxiety, or other mood disorders can often make substantial progress which has been difficult or impossible to achieve with outpatient counseling alone. 

Frequently Asked Questions About IOP Treatment For Teens 

Choosing mental health or substance use disorder treatment for your teenage daughter or son is a big decision – we understand completely. Most parents have lots of questions throughout the process. We’ve listed answers to a few of the questions we are asked most often below to help you better understand treatment options for your teen and make an informed choice. 

IOP for Adolescents and Teens F.A.Q.

Is Teen IOP Treatment for Addiction or Mental Health Covered By My Insurance?

Since the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act (MHPAEA) and The Affordable Care Act (ACA) were both passed, all health insurance plans in the U.S. must offer treatment coverage. To find out what your health insurance covers and what your out-of-pocket costs might look like, head to our Insurance Page and submit your details via our secure confidential form. Turning Point Healing Centers will get back to you within 24 hours or less with answers.

When Can My Teen Begin IOP Treatment and When Do Sessions Occur?

The first step is an over-the-phone admissions screening. We can often conduct the screening at the same time your health insurance verification of benefits is being done. This initial assessment is to help us better understand your teen’s needs so we can make treatment recommendations. Our IOP sessions are currently scheduled Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 5 p.m.- 8 p.m. (6 hours per week).  Both in-person and telehealth are available.

How Much Family Involvement Is Offered At Turning Point Healing Centers?

We go the extra mile to support families right from their initial contact with us. Small gestures, such as a comprehensive welcome packet that explains what to expect during treatment, go a long way in making families feel at ease. Moreover, as a pioneering step in our industry, we’ve introduced a dedicated Family Liaison whose sole responsibility is to proactively communicate with families daily as their loved ones progress through treatment. 

How Do I Know If IOP Treatment is Right for My Teenage Son or Daughter?

This is a question we hear often. Most of the teens and adolescents who come to use for mental health treatment or with a substance use disorder are in one of two categories. 

  1. They have tried weekly or bi-weekly outpatient therapy or counseling but have not made enough progress or they have “plateaued” or stalled in their healing process.
  2. They were in crisis and completed a residential inpatient treatment program for teens and are now ready to begin the transition back to everyday life. 

The IOP for teens at Turning Point Healing Centers offers more intensive therapeutic care than conventional weekly or bi-weekly outpatient counseling. This makes it a more effective follow-up to residential or inpatient treatment. IOP is also an option for the teen struggling with a mental health challenge, who perhaps does not require residential care. 

The best place to begin in any case is with an initial phone screening. Please give us a call at 602-755-7858 for more information.