Partial Hospitalization Programs: A Guide For Parents

Mother and daughter snuggling on sofa

The multifaceted world of mental health services can be overwhelming and confusing. This is especially true when you’re a parent looking for the best treatment options for your child.

In the realm of outpatient mental health programs, there are generally two types of programs: Intensive outpatient programs (IOPs) and partial hospitalization programs (PHPs). The latter may be an especially appealing option for parents, as they offer structured environment during the day, but allow young patients to return home in the evenings.

If you’re considering a partial hospitalization program for your child, you’ll likely have questions about what partial hospitalization is, how they work and its potential benefits.

At Branches Lewisville, formerly the Excel Center of Lewisville, we want to make sure that you’re always able to make informed decisions about your child’s care. To that end, we’ve prepared a short guide to partial hospitalization program for parents answering your most common questions.

What is Partial Hospitalization?

Partial hospitalization is a form of mental health treatment that encompasses a structured program of therapy and support services throughout the day, with the child or adolescent being able to go return home in the evenings. 

PHPs typically meet 5 times per week for anywhere between 4-8 hours at a time. Typically, food is provided as well as educational classes to keep children from falling behind in school. Branches Lewisville’s partial hospitalization program, for example, meets Monday through Friday, from 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. 

PHPs are usually recommended to children and adolescent struggling with moderate mental health symptoms and whose symptoms are causing disruptions in their day-to-day life. At the same time, partial hospitalization is a great alternative to inpatient programs, as they do not require your child to reside in a psychiatric facility during treatment. 

Partial hospitalization provides access to medication management (when needed), family and individual therapy and other therapeutic activities multiple times a day. It also provides access to other daily resources your child may need from a clinician. PHPs can be a great support option for children and adolescents who aren’t responding to outpatient services and parental guidance alone.

Benefits of Partial Hospitalization for Parents

Some parents may be hesitant to seek mental health services for their child because they do not wish them to reside in a psychiatric facility. Partial hospitalization provides a great alternative to this, enabling children to receive the care they need during the day while still being able to come home and maintain a sense of normalcy at night.

In addition to this, parents are often involved in their child’s mental health treatment and may gain powerful skills to support their child. 

Overall, partial hospitalization gives parents the piece of mind that while they are at work, their child is getting the support and care they need. 

Benefits of Partial Hospitalization for Children

Partial hospitalization programs can be incredibly beneficial to children and adolescents. 

One advantage to PHPs is the structured environment they provide. This can help young patients develop a sense of routine and establish healthy habits practiced on a regular basis.

Partial hospitalization enables children to be surrounded by peers of similar ages who are also facing similar experiences. This can help them see that they are not alone in their struggles, which can decrease feelings of loneliness and isolation.

PHPs also enable children to learn valuable coping skills and mechanisms for effectively managing their emotions and behaviors in constructive ways, a significant challenge for many children dealing with mental health challenges.

Furthwemoew, partial hospitalization enables your child to maintain connections with their families and friends, while still receiving the help and support they need.

How to Support Your Child Through Partial Hospitalization

Research shows that family involvement in mental health treatment leads to improved outcomes. 

Family involvement can take many different shapes and forms. It may include attending family therapy sessions, practicing healthy coping mechanisms with them, or simply being available for your child to talk about their emotions and experiences at home.

Most importantly, do your best to surround your child with a supportive and understanding environment at home.

Self-Care for Parents

Although your child may be the one struggling with their mental health, it’s important for you to take care of yourself as well.

Caring for a child with mental or behavioral health challenges can be emotionally challenging for parents. You may deal with many difficult emotions, such as fear, frustration, hopelessness and more.

Parents often use all of their energy and resources in pursuit of their child’s well-being, , but that can lead to emotional (and physical) burnout

Consider looking into support groups for parents as well as self-care activities that can provide relief during this difficult time.

Remember, you can’t care for your child if you don’t care for yourself as well.

Building Happier Tomorrows

When considering outpatient programs for your child, understanding the ins-and-outs of partial hospitalization is important to find the right program for their needs.

Branches Lewisville, formerly known as the Excel Center of Lewisville, is an outpatient-only psychiatric facility to children and adolescents ages 5-18. Serving youths in the Lewisville, Texas area, our exceptional staff takes pride and care in your child’s mental well-being.

If you’d like to learn more of what Branches Lewisville can do for your child’s mental health needs, do not hesitate to contact us at 972-906-5522 for a complimentary assessment.

If you think you or your child is experiencing a mental health crisis, call 988 or get to the nearest emergency room.

For medical emergencies, call 911 or get to the nearest emergency room.