Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP)

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What is a Partial Hospitalization Program?

If you are someone who is currently addicted to drugs or alcohol, you likely know firsthand just how difficult it is to try and stop your substance abuse. Addiction doesn’t just affect your physical and mental health, it also causes serious changes in how your brain works. These changes to your brain are what makes addiction so difficult to overcome.

In order to stop abusing substances, and help heal the damage that addiction inflicts, many people benefit from a partial hospitalization program, also called a PHP or day treatment. These programs are a unique alternative to more traditional addiction programs, while still providing the same care needed to help you get sober.

What is PHP/Day Treatment?

PHPs, or day treatment programs, are outpatient addiction treatment programs. This means that patients do not have to stay in the facility overnight. Instead, patients still live and sleep at home, and attend treatment at the facility 3 to 5 days per week, for a total of 20 to 25 hours. PHPs provide a mix of addiction treatment services, which can include detox treatment, individual counseling, group counseling, and more. 

Some patients come to a PHP program after completing an inpatient program, as a “step down” in addiction treatment. Others may begin their journey with a PHP, or be admitted due to experiencing a relapse that requires more intensive treatment.

What Kinds of Treatments do PHP/Day Treatment Use?

PHPs use a wide array of addiction treatments in order to ensure that each individual client gets the right care for their needs. Depending on your needs, your treatment may involve one or more of the following programs:

Individual Therapy

Individual therapy involves one-on-one sessions with a therapist or counselor. There are many different kinds of individual therapy. The one most commonly utilized in addiction treatment is cognitive-behavioral therapy or CBT. This type of therapy focuses on helping people to recognize the situations, behaviors, emotions that trigger their drug use, and give them tools to avoid or cope with these things.

Group Therapy

Group therapy, whether part of a 12-step program or not, is a great asset in addiction treatment. Being in a group of people who have similar experiences with addiction and recovery helps patients to feel less alone, and more confident in their ability to succeed. It also gives them a place to talk about their personal experiences and struggles in a non-judgemental, supportive space.

Family Therapy

If your addiction has had an impact on your family relationships, PHPs often offer family therapy as a part of their programming. Family therapy helps to heal the damage your addiction may have caused, strengthening the family bond and helping to create a strong support network for your recovery.

Motivational Interviewing (MI)

A type of talk therapy, MI empowers patients by encouraging their readiness to change negative habits into positive ones.

Contingency Management (CM)

CM uses positive reinforcement to encourage people to stay sober. This can include incentives like extra free time, vouchers that can be exchanged for treats, movie tickets, and more.

Medication-Assisted Treatment (MET)

Most often offered to those with an alcohol or opioid addiction, MET utilizes medications to treat the symptoms of withdrawal, as well as substance cravings. MET is very effective in helping alcohol or opioid abusers to both stop using, and avoid using again in the future.

What are the Benefits of PHP/Day Treatment?

The biggest benefit of PHPs is that patients are able to return home each night. For those with family, work, or school obligations, this makes it much easier for them to stick with their treatment plan. There are many other benefits to these programs, including:

  • Medical treatment for addiction-related health problems and overall wellness
  • Mental health treatment for co-occurring disorders such as depression, anxiety, mood disorders, schizophrenia, and more.
  • Education in ways to avoid future substance abuse, including coping mechanisms for cravings and drug-use triggers.
  • Address underlying issues that led to your substance abuse
  • Learn ways to make being and staying sober a fun and fulfilling lifestyle
  • Ongoing support and counseling to help you heal emotionally, mentally, and physically

Are PHP/Day Treatment Effective?

Despite being outpatient programs, PHPs are still a very effective way to help treat drug or alcohol addiction. They provide the same levels of care as an inpatient program, but with the added benefit of patients still being able to reside at home.


There are some instances, however, in which PHPs may not be a good option. If you do not have stable housing, an unsupportive family, or other substance users in the home, a PHP may not be for you. This is also true for people with very severe addictions, who may have life-threatening withdrawal symptoms, or for people who have already completed an addiction treatment program at least once.

If you are currently dealing with an addiction and would like to know more about PHP/day treatment programs, contact us today. We can help you to decide if a PHP is right for you, as well as design a treatment program that will maximize your chances of success. Don’t let addiction keep controlling your life – gain control with the help of our partial hospitalization program, and find out just how fulfilling an addiction-free life can be.

Partial Hospitalization Program in Atlanta

Get the help you need to overcome addiction and find lasting recovery. At Buckhead Behavioral Health in Atlanta, GA, our PHP will provide you with the treatment you deserve. We understand that seeking help can be difficult, and will be right beside you every step of the way. Your life can be more fulfilling than you ever imagine. All you have to do is make the first step towards recovery and call Buckhead Behavioral Health or visit our admissions page to get started.

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