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    Intensive Outpatient Treatment in North Carolina

    Intensive OutPatient: “IOP”

    First Step NC is a trusted rehab center and after-care provider in the Triangle region of NC. We provide Substance Abuse Intensive Outpatient Programs (SA IOP) at all our locations.  SA IOP, by definition, is an outpatient counseling group that meets for 3 hours, no less than 3 times per week.

    The typical duration of IOP is 10 – 12 weeks if attending 3 times per week.  Intensive Outpatient Program groups are typically small with no more than 8 – 12 participants per counselor. IOP participants typically begin with 3 groups weekly.  Once abstinence is achieved and progress significant progress is maintained during first few weeks, group members “step down” to 2 groups per week.

    First Step’s IOP program relies on the power of the group therapy modality. Our Intensive Outpatient Program employs cognitive-behavioral and motivational enhancement therapeutic techniques. We focus on the progressive nature of addiction, honest self-disclosure, client-driven feedback, and “telling on the disease” of addiction.

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    “My first time in IOP, I was angry, scared, ashamed, tearful, and couldn’t see hope. I met my counselor and the group members and over the sessions, I started to change. I initially was having difficulty expressing my feelings. through group, I have learned it is okay to feel my feelings. Group therapy has been very eye-opening for me. My life has improved as a direct result of this IOP. I learned it’s good to get help. I needed help, and I surrendered to my addiction. The counselors are caring and do a great job keeping the group focused. I appreciate everyone at First Step. Treatment has changed me because I can love myself again. I no longer feel tremendous shame and guilt. I am living in the present and truly enjoying my sober life.” –Anonymous IOP graduate

    Rather than sticking to a strictly didactic formula, our rehab centers across the Triangle Region of NC employ creative experiential activities during group (River of Addiction, Trust Walk, art therapy exercises, small group interaction, brainstorming, etc.) to engage the client in a dynamic learning and support environment. At the heart of each three-hour group session is the process portion of the group. Here clients are encouraged to openly share in a safe environment about their recovery achievements and pitfalls. Client feedback, questions, and interaction with each other are just as important as timely clinical feedback given by the counselors.

    We have a strong family program and encourage our clients to take advantage of it.  All our SA IOP programs feature regular family nights.  At our Raleigh facility, we offer a free program that meets each Monday from 5:30 – 7:00 PM for family members, friends, and members of the community.  (F.A.C.E. Program: Family And Community Education).

    Family involvement is a key component that improves success for substance use treatment. We feature regularly scheduled Family Nights in all our IOP programs.  On Family Night, clients and family members attend a special multi-family session.  Our family programs ar facilitated by experienced masters Level therapists.  We encourage our clients to consider family therapy sessions as a supplement to their treatment.  Family therapy sessions can further educate family members and help facilitate open communication to begin healing the family system.

    What comes after IOP?

    Continuing care or aftercare is recommended to help group members remain focused on recovery during life changes of early recovery. Clients who successfully complete group counseling may continue alumni aftercare for $5 per day with their same primary group and counselor. Some participants choose to “step down” to attending our long term structured 90 minute aftercare group one evening per week. Our goal is to help group members maintain the gains earned during the course of treatment. Research proves that the longer one remains in treatment the better the chances for long term recovery.

    “My first initial impressions were good I honestly was nervous, just because everyone else seemed to know each other. After a few sessions I felt that those strangers were my family and I couldn’t wait to see them the days of our meeting. I learned that alcohol is a really major issue and that more should be done to help those who are addicted. I feel like those dealing with the addition do not have the same resources as others who may have something else. I also learned what it meant to be a “sponsor” and now I want to become one to help others out. I was also educated on many preventive measures and how alcohol addiction is very serious in my community here in Durham. All in all I’m thankful for my new family I met here and the counselor’s for all their support.” Anonymous

    Professionals Program

    First Step’s Professionals Program is confidential and private. We provide both primary care in outpatient and intensive outpatient programs (IOP) for professionals. Upon completion of primary outpatient care, we provide an open ended relapse prevention after care program. The Professionals Program aftercare groups are 90 minutes and meet on Monday evenings. Upon request and authorization, we will provide monitoring and reporting to professional boards, employers, or others as needed.  Reporting must be requested in writing. If not requested by the client in writing, confidentiality is strictly protected and no one is allowed access to treatment information.  Without written permission by the client, “we can’t confirm or deny” that the client has ever been to First Step.

    Continue attending groups after graduation for $5 per day! 
    Upon successful completion of recommended treatment, all group members are welcome to continue attending their group for $5 per day. Program graduates may attend as long as they remain abstinent, it is desired and beneficial. Drug screens are $30 if requested. This offer is for clients who not requiring progress or other report to Boards, employers, courts, etc. Ongoing support is the best way to ensure long term recovery. Continuing care clients have remained active as long as 2-2/3 years after completing their recommended treatment.

    Inpatient, Residential & Hospital Aftercare:

    First Step Services, LLC provides Intensive Outpatient and general outpatient aftercare for people completing and discharging from inpatient programs & hospitals across the country. With a comprehensive range of treatments and services, we aim to be the community’s first choice in drug and alcohol rehabilitation in Raleigh and throughout NC. We provide intensive group counseling, family counseling, individual counseling and other services as needed. The goal is to provide people discharging  from facilities with continued treatment and recovery while they transition back into community living; returning to work, to families and resuming a “normal” lifestyle after completing inpatient or hospitalization.  We provide this service at all our locations.

    What about going to a detox or inpatient substance use treatment  program?  After completing “detox” and/or an inpatient treatment program from alcohol or drug use, the chances of lasting abstinence and recovery are greatly improved by completing an  intensive outpatient for 2, 3 months or longer. Most hospitals and residential treatment centers recommend an intensive outpatient aftercare program.

    “I came to First Step after my third treatment center. My first impression was that it was a waste of time and I would be better off at a meeting. That opinion quickly changed. First Step has amazing substance abuse counselors. I learned how to have fun again clean. It made me a happier person in general. I love First Step. I would definitely recommend it to a fellow addict in need. Also the family night portion was very helpful with me and my family. We learned how to have a healthier and happy relationship for all of us. Thank you First Step!” Anonymous IOP group member

    How do I get started? You may start at almost any time. Call First Step  today and schedule an intake and orientation appointment. You may able to begin counseling the same day as your initial phone call. First Step is able to see clients within 24 hours and you can start at the next scheduled group if you choose. For those who aren’t sure which treatment program to choose, we are happy to assist with finding other treatment providers.

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  • Client Experiences

    My case brought me to First Step based on a referral from a college. Randee was very professional on first visit and it encouraged me to complete recommended treatment in IOP after her assessment. Group meeting were interesting at times especially with the adversity of the group. Many of the general topics were enlightening and


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