Intensive Outpatient Treatment

The nourishED IOP program offers a higher level of treatment without heavily interfering with your everyday life activities.

What is Intensive Outpatient Treatment for Eating Disorders

There are many levels of care in eating disorder treatment. The most intensive treatment is Inpatient Hospitalization. Residential Treatment is a step down from this. After 24-hour residential care, Partial Hospitalization AKA Day treatment is the next level down. This includes spending the day in treatment and going home in the evenings. One meal and or snack is eating at home. The next lowest care outside of pure outpatient treatment (once weekly sessions with your dietitian and therapist) is Intensive Outpatient treatment, otherwise known as IOP.

The IOP program runs three to five days a week for three to five hours/day, depending on the program. This includes therapeutic groups, one meal and one snack, and nutrition education. There can be offsite outings to practice skills of daily living, like grocery shopping, and social outings, as well as challenges related to meals in social settings. The individual in the IOP program will meet with their therapist and dietitian at least once a week for individual sessions. There is a psychiatrist involved in the treatment team to manage medical stability and medications.

Benefits of IOP- Flexibility

Individuals who are in IOP programming are functioning adequately in their lives but need more structure and time focused on recovery than what outpatient sessions can offer. Sometimes, seeing a dietitian and therapist once or twice a week is not enough to help contain the eating disorder behaviors. Sometimes, the person in IOP will be transitioning down from a higher level of care, such as residential or partial hospitalization. The IOP program allows those involved in treatment to be able to continue life activities such as work, school, while allowing them time to get help with their eating disorder in treatment. Thus, an individual in an IOP program has the opportunity to live his/her life and get a good level of support at the same time.

Those who benefit most from an IOP program are able to handle the lower level of structure that treatment provides.  They are able to follow their meal plans and have better control regarding eating disorder behaviors such as binging, purging, restricting, and over-exercising.  Triggers, psychological issues resulting from the eating disorder, and/or lapses in behavior may still occur, which is why they continue to need the structure and support that an IOP program provides.  For others, there may be a lack of support at home.

Participants in an IOP program are medically stable and do not have medical complications that need intense monitoring or supervision.  Sometimes people who participate in this level of care may actually need a higher level of care.  Due to life circumstances, geographical limitations, or obligations involving family or work, they may be unable to participate in such programs.  An IOP program may be the only program they are able to attend.

Individuals may enroll in an IOP program at any time. The program consists of a group of individuals who are at different stages in their recovery.  Group members are often able to relate to each other, may have experienced or be at similar stages of life, and provide additional support and guidance to each other.  If a person who needs support and structure from a program does not receive it, it is more than likely that the individual will deteriorate and a higher level of care may be required. Thus, the support and structure of an IOP program often helps to prevent people from further decompensating.

Intensive Outpatient Treatment Guidelines

The following guidelines should be used when considering the appropriateness of an IOP program:

1. Symptoms or difficulties related to the eating disorder are continuing to have an impact on
the individual’s life.

2. The person would benefit from having some support and structure to learn how to manage and cope with their illness.

3. Additional medical or mental health conditions including depression, anxiety, substance use, if present, can be safely managed at this level of care.

4. The individual is not at imminent risk of serious harm to self or others.

5. The family and/or individual are able to comply with the requirements of the program.

Individual Dietitian Sessions

Individual Therapy Sessions

Brittany Hunter-Sanders

Clinical Focus- Personalized Meal Plans | Eating Disorders |Intuitive eating | Mindfulness Practices | Feeding the Family | Pediatric Nutrition | Disordered Eating | Health and Wellness.

Rebel Buersmeyer

Clinical Focus: Individual Therapy | Couples Therapy | Sex Addiction Treatment | Eating Disorders Treatment

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If you are struggling in recovery, or need treatment, don’t hesitate to reach out to nourishED
Eating Disorder Treatment Center immediately with any questions. Call now and speak to one of our highly trained admission specialists today. Or fill out this form for a free
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