What to expect in the Adult Mental Health Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP)?

The program includes evidence-based methods. Our IOP utilizes one of the most efficient techniques to treat depression, anxiety, and mood disorders like, bi-polar disorder. The program provides psycho-education to patients about how to cope with mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, and bi-polar disorder. During group sessions, adults will learn about Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Mentalization Based Therapy (MBT), Mindfulness, life skills, and music therapy in a relaxing and positive atmosphere. The curriculum helps adults develop awareness, and make connections between their symptoms and their maladaptive responses. Patients will learn healthy communication techniques to improve their relationships and help them to get better by understanding depression, anxiety, and bi-polar disorder.

The program includes 2 groups a day, one individual session per week, and one medication management group per week. The program is most effective when adults consistently participate in the weekly sessions.

Adult Mental Health IOP Schedule

The Adult IOP takes place four times a week, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 12:00 pm to 3:00 pm for 6 weeks.

Example of the Adult IOP Schedule

12:00pm – 1:00pm

Adult Process Group

1:00pm – 2:00pm

Adults Goals Group


Adults Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

Challenges Adults Face with Mental Health Disorders

Every day more adults become impacted by depression, anxiety, and other mood disorders, like bi-polar disorder. The rates for depression and anxiety are increasing in our population. The suicide rate keeps increasing all over the world. In the USA, suicide is the second leading cause of death among ages of 10 to 24 and has become an imminent health problem (CDC, 2014).

  • Suicide is the SECOND leading cause of death for ages 10-24. (2017 CDC WISQARS)
  • Suicide is the SECOND leading cause of death for college-age youth and ages 12-18. (2017 CDC WISQARS)
  • More teenagers and young adults die from suicide than from cancer, heart disease, AIDS, birth defects, stroke, pneumonia, influenza, and chronic lung disease, COMBINED (The Jason Foundation, 2018).
  • Suicide claims more than 100 young adults each week and roughly 1 in 12 young people in our nation attempt suicide each year (The Jason Foundation, 2018).

The suicide rate for adolescents (age range 10 to 24 years) in Santa clara County is higher than the California rate (5.4 per 100,000 versus 5.3 per 100,000) (CDC, 2014).

Bipolar disorder affects approximately 5.7 million adult Americans, or about 2.6% of the U.S. population age 18 and older every year. (National Institute of Mental Health).

  • The median age of onset for bipolar disorder is 25 years (National Institute of Mental Health), although the illness can start in early childhood or as late as the 40’s and 50’s.
  • An equal number of men and women develop bipolar illness and it is found in all ages, races, ethnic groups and social classes.
  • More than two-thirds of people with bipolar disorder have at least one close relative with the illness or with unipolar major depression, indicating that the disease has a heritable component. (National Institute of Mental Health)

Adults can be at a loss when suffering from mental health issues like anxiety, depression, and mood disorders like bipolar disorder.

Many times, the adult won’t show external symptoms until the symptoms become too hard to overcome. Adults can start feeling low energy, have poor sleep or appetite, have negative thoughts, don’t feel like spending time with friends or family or they feel too anxious to go to work because of trouble concentrating and socializing with peers. Adults don’t always have the tools to recognize their symptoms and for many reasons they don’t call for help. When the symptoms are becoming out of control adults may become overwhelmed and don’t know what to do to get help. Consequently, today’s adults are in need of extra guidance and support in the mental health field.

What is bipolar disorder?

Bipolar disorder, also known as manic-depressive illness, is a brain disorder that causes unusual shifts in mood, energy, activity levels, and the ability to carry out day-to-day tasks.

People with bipolar disorder experience periods of unusually intense emotion, changes in sleep patterns and activity levels, and unusual behaviors. These distinct periods are called “mood episodes.” Mood episodes are drastically different from the moods and behaviors that are typical for the person. Extreme changes in energy, activity, and sleep go along with mood episodes.

There are four basic types of bipolar disorder; all of them involve clear changes in mood, energy, and activity levels. These moods range from periods of extremely “up,” elated, and energized behavior (known as manic episodes) to very sad, “down,” or hopeless periods (known as depressive episodes). Less severe manic periods are known as hypomanic episodes.

  • Bipolar I Disorder— defined by manic episodes that last at least 7 days, or by manic symptoms that are so severe that the person needs immediate hospital care. Usually, depressive episodes occur as well, typically lasting at least 2 weeks. Episodes of depression with mixed features (having depression and manic symptoms at the same time) are also possible.
  • Bipolar II Disorder— defined by a pattern of depressive episodes and hypomanic episodes, but not the full-blown manic episodes described above.
  • Cyclothymic Disorder (also called cyclothymia)— defined by numerous periods of hypomanic symptoms as well numerous periods of depressive symptoms lasting for at least 2 years (1 year in children and adolescents). However, the symptoms do not meet the diagnostic requirements for a hypomanic episode and a depressive episode.
  • Other Specified and Unspecified Bipolar and Related Disorders— defined by bipolar disorder symptoms that do not match the three categories listed above.

Proper diagnosis and treatment help people with bipolar disorder lead healthy and productive lives. Talking with a doctor or other licensed mental health professional is the first step for anyone who thinks he or she may have bipolar disorder.

What is anxiety or depression?

The American Psychological Association (APA) defines anxiety as “an emotion characterized by feelings of tension, worried thoughts and physical changes like increased blood pressure.”

Anxiety is a normal and often healthy emotion. However, when a person regularly feels disproportionate levels of anxiety, it might become a medical disorder.

Anxiety disorders form a category of mental health diagnoses that lead to excessive nervousness, fear, apprehension, and worry.

These disorders alter how a person processes emotions and behave, also causing physical symptoms. Mild anxiety might be vague and unsettling, while severe anxiety may seriously affect day-to-day living.

Anxiety disorders affect 40 million people in the United States. It is the most common group of mental illnesses in the country. However, only 36.9 percent of people with an anxiety disorder receive treatment.

Depression (major depressive disorder) is a common and serious medical illness that negatively affects how you feel, the way you think and how you act. Fortunately, it is also treatable. Depression causes feelings of sadness and/or a loss of interest in activities once enjoyed. It causes severe symptoms that affect how you feel, think, and handle daily activities, such as sleeping, eating, or working.

Depression symptoms can vary from mild to severe and can include:

  • Feeling sad or having a depressed mood
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in activities once enjoyed
  • Changes in appetite — weight loss or gain unrelated to dieting
  • Trouble sleeping or sleeping too much
  • Loss of energy or increased fatigue
  • Increase in purposeless physical activity (e.g., hand-wringing or pacing) or slowed movements and speech (actions observable by others)
  • Feeling worthless or guilty
  • Difficulty thinking, concentrating or making decisions
  • Thoughts of death or suicide

Symptoms must last at least two weeks for a diagnosis of depression.