Acera Health

Residential Mental Health Treatment - How Long is it?

Reviewed by: Melody Stone
group therapy of people sitting in a circle at a residential treatment center

Residential mental health treatment, also referred to as inpatient treatment, is a vital intervention for individuals dealing with severe mental health issues. The length of residential mental health treatment depends on numerous factors, such as:

  • The severity of the mental health issue
  • Individual’s response to treatment
  • Co-occurring conditions
  • Individual’s commitment to recovery

Residential treatment programs are typically tailored to meet the needs of each individual, so the duration of stay can vary widely. It can range from short-term stays of a few weeks, usually for crisis stabilization, to several months for individuals with severe or complex conditions. In some exceptional cases, treatment may extend up to a year when slow-paced, long-term therapy is needed for sustainable recovery.

Ultimately, the aim of residential mental health treatment isn’t to expedite the process. Instead, it’s about guaranteeing each individual obtains the care they need, tailored to their unique needs. In a 2014 study, an average of 53.6 patients per 100,000 population received care in mental health inpatient facilities. This approach, focusing on personalized care, lays a solid foundation for long-term recovery and an enhanced quality of life.

What is Residential Inpatient Mental Health Treatment

Residential inpatient mental health treatment is an intensive form of care where individuals with mental health issues stay within a facility full-time, receiving constant care and support from a team of trained professionals. This program bridges the gap between outpatient services and hospitalization, providing an immersive, holistic approach to therapy. Learn about when to consider inpatient mental health treatment here.

The Goal of Inpatient Treatment

The primary objective of inpatient treatment is to provide an all-encompassing range of services and a strong support system to promote recovery. This becomes crucial when considering that, in 2021, nearly 22.8% of individuals in the United States were grappling with a mental illness, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. For these individuals who require assistance, inpatient treatment is a valuable resource.

Inpatient services range from traditional therapies like cognitive-behavioral therapy and dialectical behavior therapy to holistic approaches such as mindfulness exercises and yoga, aiming to address the root causes of mental health conditions rather than solely managing symptoms.

What are the Benefits of Inpatient Treatment?

Enhanced Supervision and Support

Inpatient treatment programs offer the benefit of 24/7 professional care. This constant supervision ensures immediate response and assistance, which is especially critical for individuals with severe mental health disorders or those at risk of self-harm. Explore our comprehensive guide on residential treatment to gain deeper insights and valuable information on the support and care offered by this program.

Personalized Treatment Plans

Another advantage of inpatient treatment is the personalized treatment plans that cater to an individual’s unique needs. These plans consider various aspects, including the type of mental health disorder, its severity, any co-occurring disorders, and the individual’s personal history and background.

Comprehensive Therapeutic Services

Inpatient treatment facilities usually offer a wide range of therapeutic services. This comprehensive approach includes traditional psychotherapy, medication management, and holistic therapies like mindfulness and yoga. The wide array of strategies enhances coping mechanisms and contributes to long-term recovery.

When Do I Need Inpatient Treatment

The decision to seek inpatient treatment is often the result of a critical need. Individuals should consider inpatient treatment if they are experiencing the following:

  • Severe mental health issues: When mental health symptoms escalate to the point of self-harm or harm to others, inpatient treatment offers urgent, intensive care. This is vital, as the National Alliance of Mental Health reports that nearly 1 in 25 adults live with a severe mental illness.
  • Unresponsiveness to outpatient treatments: Sometimes, outpatient therapies may not be enough to manage a mental health condition effectively. This unresponsiveness could be due to the complexity of the condition, the presence of co-occurring disorders, or specific individual factors.
  • Living in non-supportive environments: Recovery from a mental health condition can be challenging when the environment isn’t conducive to healing. This can include a variety of factors, such as living with individuals who don’t understand mental health or environments where substance use is prevalent.
  • Persistent feelings of sadness or hopelessness: When feelings of sadness, hopelessness, or emptiness become a constant companion, it could signal a serious mental health concern like depression. 
  • Loss of interest in once-enjoyable activities: One telltale sign of several mental health conditions, including depression, is anhedonia or loss of interest in activities that once brought joy. 
  • Significant changes in sleep or eating habits: Drastic alterations in sleep patterns (insomnia or hypersomnia) or eating habits (overeating or loss of appetite) can indicate the presence of a serious mental health issue.
  • Difficulty fulfilling responsibilities: If mental health symptoms are making it challenging to meet responsibilities at school, work, or home, it’s an indication that a higher level of care is required. 

Inpatient treatment can provide the intensive care needed to address these issues, offering a pathway towards recovery and improved quality of life. If you or a loved one are experiencing any of these symptoms, it may be time to explore the options for inpatient treatment. Learn more about inpatient vs. outpatient mental health treatment here.

Residential Treatment at Acera Mental Health

At Acera Mental Health, our inpatient treatment program is designed with a patient-centered and holistic approach. Our multidisciplinary team of psychiatrists, therapists, and support staff collaboratively engage with each patient, developing strategies that align with their unique needs and recovery goals. 

Recognizing when you or a loved one may need inpatient treatment can be life-changing. At Acera Mental Health, our inpatient treatment program provides a supportive, structured environment, a range of therapeutic services, and an individualized approach to facilitate the journey towards recovery.


Related Resources

Have Us Reach Out