Oh there’s no place like rehab for the holidays

10 Reasons to Get Treatment Over the Holidays

Admittedly, the idea of spending the holidays in rehab isn’t very appealing initially.  But, when contrasted with the reality of drug addiction meeting large-scale family event, it starts to look a little better.

The holidays are about love and family, and there is nothing that can make an alcoholic or addict’s family happier than the knowledge that she is turning her life around.

The holidays are also about generosity and helping others, and the holiday season in treatment is ripe with opportunities to bring warmth into the lives of others.  We tend to be afraid to go against tradition, but building new traditions is a beautiful thing.  I’m thinking about starting one myself – Christmas caroling at treatment centers around the Orange County area.  Anyone interested?

Every alcoholic and addict reaches the point where enough is enough, and it can happen any time.  When it does, seize the window of opportunity.  Not to mention, the family might have a smoother Christmas dinner without a fall-down drunk at the table.

Helping or hurting? How to be there for an addict

Are You Making it Easier for Your Loved One to Abuse Drugs?

The families of drug addicts inevitably end up in the difficult position of deciding whether to help their addicted loved one, or to cut them off from support.  The disease of addiction infiltrates the brain with manipulative tactics – anything necessary to get high.   Unfortunately, spouses, parents and siblings are the most common targets for this manipulation.

When an addict’s life starts spinning out of control as a result of drug abuse, it is very tempting for the ones who love them to pick up the pieces.  The problem is, giving help to addicts can actually hurt them.  The small catastrophes that occur when drugs start to make a person’s life unmanageable are warning signs.  When family members clean up these messy situations, the warnings lose their impact.

Though it can be incredibly painful to set limits with spouses or children that result in them leaving the home or losing financial support, these limits can save their lives.  Only when the crutches are pulled away does an addict realize that he or she has lost the ability to stand.  At this point, and only at this point, the addict will realize that the game is up; that everything needs to change.

If you’ve lost your pink cloud, don’t despair!

Sometimes it feels like sobriety gave way not to a life of freedom and happiness, but to a plethora of unresolved issued waiting to be addressed.

This makes sense. Alcohol and drugs were a means of escaping aspects of life which were difficult to handle, and years of perpetual escape allowed troubles to pile up, leaving an overwhelming collection of life’s problems ripe for fixing upon sobering up.

This can seem like a curse, but it is a blessing. Our minds only allow us to process that which we are capable of handling. When a new issue seems to crop up out of nowhere, it means that we have made progress, cleared out some of the wreckage, and now we have the mental capacity to tackle the next item.

How long these items keep emerging, I do not know. But the burden seems to lessen each time, so I’ll keep on plugging.

One pill recovering addicts should still take – their vitamins

The Importance of Nutrition and Diet in Recovery

As former disciples of the school of modifying mood by means of chemicals, one might think that addicts and alcoholics in recovery would jump at the opportunity to boost their dopamine levels via their diets.  But more often than not, recovering addicts opt for the quick-fix method of eating – sugar, caffeine and junk food.

Eating right can not only make the first stage of sobriety more pleasant, but also help to correct bio-chemical imbalances in the brain that may have predated substance abuse.  Primary result = better mood.  Sign me up, please!

Lisa Licavoli, Certified Clinical Nutritionist, leads educational groups on nutrition at Safe Harbor Treatment Center for Women, helping the women at Safe Harbor become more conscious of how diet can impact mental state.

Recovery to-do list

Tips to Keep You Sane While in Recovery

Concrete actions for a better recovery are a welcome change from the spiritual axioms we often hear without quite knowing what to do with them.  It’s not that these “sober proverbs” aren’t thought provoking, but profound ideas swimming around in the head can only do so much.  Action is key.

This article breaks down some of the key actions that can be taken to improve the quality of sobriety.  Some of the items mentioned (therapy, support groups, avoiding places where people are drinking) are on the obvious side, but others (avoiding sugars, quitting cigarette smoking, setting aside time to pursue personal interests) are less often discussed.

Especially in the case of quitting cigarette smoking and improving eating habits, these are actions seldom taken by addicts and alcoholics in early recovery.  It is exciting to see suggestions like these in print because it presents hope that there are avenues that are generally not pursued that can potentially improve the quality of life for recovering addicts and alcoholics, particularly in early sobriety.

Friendship in sobriety – it is what you make of it

Friendship in sobriety is dramatically different from friendship as we once knew it. Before getting sober, friends were partners in crime – people to be sneaky with. Being a good friend meant keeping each others secrets – no matter what they were.

In sobriety friendship is something completely different. Sober friends are partners in recovery. They are people who bond over the common goal of starting a new life, rather than the common goal of getting high.

To be a good friend in sobriety, it is necessary to break old habits. If we know that a friend in recovery is engaging in behavior that puts her sobriety or her safety in jeopardy, we get her help. We don’t worry about her being irritated at us for revealing her secrets. We know that later she will recognize that our actions were motivated by love.

When we hold our friends accountable for keeping themselves healthy, we also create a safety net for ourselves. The same friends who we look out for during rough times will be there for us when we need to be held accountable. This is how friendships function as a support in sobriety.

Healthy friendships can be amazing assets in recovery, but keeping these relationships productive sometimes means taking actions that a friend won’t like in the present, because we know that they are best for her in the future.

Like anything else in sobriety, it takes work to keep friendships healthy and positive. And, like anything else in sobriety, the rewards of putting the work in make it all worthwhile.

Therapy for the subconscious

Talk therapy can be extremely productive, and is an essential part of recovery. However, it can be difficult to access certain topics in a conversational therapy session, because some of our deepest issues are buried in the subconscious mind.

Less structured forms of therapy which allow some play to occur have a good chance of touching nerves that guide us to some of these deep-seeded issues. Experiential therapy, part of the weekly schedule at Safe Harbor Treatment Center for Women, uses these more playful avenues to access core issues. Through role playing exercises, psychodrama, and enacted interactions with the inner child, women are able to gain awareness about some of the psychological challenges they are facing.

Other activities offered at Safe Harbor such as art therapy, equine therapy and hypnotherapy also utilize these indirect passages to access the subconscious.

Alcoholic/Addict. What’s the big difference?

It breaks my heart when I hear a newcomer to sobriety open up and speak her truth in an AA meeting, only to be chased down and scolded post-meeting because she mentioned the word “drugs,” or referred to herself as an “addict” instead of an “alcoholic.”

Ok, we do have separate programs for alcohol and drug addiction (Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous), but we have to recognize the fact that we all have the same disease, regardless of our poison of choice.

I once heard a Safe Harbor girl musing on the topic. “What’s the point of identifying as an alcoholic/addict?” she said. “You wouldn’t call your puppy a German Shepard/dog — a German Shepard IS a dog.”

The point of recovery is to find kinship with all who suffer from addiction – of any kind. I can identify with a gambling addict, a shopping addict, a love addict, any addict, because I know what it feels like to be so uncomfortable inside my own skin that I need an escape route.

We have to find our commonalities instead of focusing on our differences. That is how we can be of service to one another and help one another lead healthy lives.

Addiction to alcohol, drugs and sex: yes, they are real diseases

With Tiger Woods in the media spotlight, the debate has sprung up yet again.  Is overindulgence in vices like sex, drugs and alcohol a symptom of an authentic illness, or is it just plain poor decision-making?

When an individual has an addiction to something that doesn’t sound like fun, for example self-mutilation or vomiting, people are less apt to argue about the addiction’s validity as a disease.  But when it comes to things that the average person enjoys doing and is capable of doing in moderation, like drinking or having sex, the public is much more likely to assume that all people have the same level of control that they possess when engaging in these activities.

Labeling those whose lives are crumbling to pieces around them as the result of an addiction, like Tiger Woods, as ‘sleazebags’ or ‘idiots’ is unproductive.  Infidelity and alcohol/drug abuse are never good hobbies to take up, but there is much more at work than poor decision-making for those addicted to destructive behaviors.

True addicts need treatment if they want to return to living normally.  Without treatment, their addiction will continue to run (and ruin) their lives.

Is relapse a part of recovery?

Many times when an addict or alcoholic comes crawling back to the rooms of AA and NA after deciding to try drinking or using one more time, she is welcomed back and told, “It’s okay – relapse is a part of recovery.”

For some people, this may be true. For others, relapse is a part of death. This phrase might placate those who feel guilty after a slip and are embarrassed to admit they drank or used, but it also gives others implicit permission to go out and have another go at it. All who are a part of recovery know that addiction and alcoholism are diseases that claim lives every day. How could we be so careless as to suggest that everybody can relapse and just mosey right on back to recovery when they stop having fun?

Even if a relapse doesn’t cause death, it inevitably causes some kind of chaos and disaster. There is absolutely no reason that any addict should feel they have the right to relapse, or that relapse is unavoidable.

There are plenty of men and women in the program who have never picked up a drink or a drug since the day they committed to sobriety. Some of these individuals have forty or more years of sobriety. Wouldn’t it be better to aim toward that example rather than preemptively assuming that we will fail and relapse one or more times before we “get it?”

Staying single in the first year of sobriety

You may have heard it from a sponsor, a friend, or staff member at treatment: Don’t date in your first year of sobriety. I know, it sounds unfair. What else are you supposed to do for distraction?

Well, that’s exactly the point. Nothing. Dating is an incredibly easy way to stop thinking about yourself and the changes you’re trying to make in your life, and focus on simpler things like hair, make-up, sex, etc.

In early recovery, it’s completely normal to seek out any and all forms of distraction. Whether they come in the form of dating, unhealthy eating habits, shopping, gambling, or any other obsession, these distractions are huge liabilities.

Especially for those who are lucky enough to start their journey out in a treatment program, the first stage of sobriety is an extremely valuable opportunity to dive head-first into recovery. Missing this once-in-a-lifetime chance to focus 100% of your attention on how you can work every day to improve your physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health is a travesty.

Not to mention, these spring chicken sober relationships rarely turn into life-long partnerships. Who wants to look back on a failed chance at a new life, and realize they threw it all away to hang out with a loser?

What is dual-diagnosis?

Dual-diagnosis is a term used to denote individuals who suffer from drug addiction or alcoholism as well as another mental disorder (often bipolar disorder, PTSD, or eating disorders).

Considering the fact that addicts tend to be people who use and drink to self-medicate for pre-existing problems, it’s not surprising to learn that dual-diagnosis is incredibly common.

The question is: which came first, the chicken or the egg? In one case, an individual may clearly begin drinking as a means of coping with symptoms of a psychological disorder. In another, a long-term drug user may develop a psychological disorder as a result of substance-related mental imbalance.

The answer is: It doesn’t really matter, both disorders must be addressed in treatment in order for an individual to recover.

If an addicted individual attempts to work on deep psychological issues without getting sober, she will not succeed, because she will be incapable of accessing important memories and emotions that are numbed by drugs and alcohol.

If a person with a psychological disorder attempts to get sober without dealing with their mental condition, they will find sobriety miserable, causing them to return to drinking and using.

Each person will discover the true root of their problems in time, as they progress in their personal journey through recovery.  The important thing is to get into treatment, and begin the process of working through both substance abuse patterns and mental health issues.  Nothing will improve until both of these areas are addressed.

The power of positive thinking

People always say things like “think positive,” and “if you want success, envision yourself succeeding.”  It may sounds like an oversimplified strategy, but in recovery, positive thinking is incredibly important.

Setting your own mental tone is a way of creating the space that your psyche is going to be living in for the day. For us addicts and alcoholics, making the mind a peaceful and happy place does not always come naturally.

Prayer and meditation are two tools that the 12 steps teach us to use to refresh our mental climate, but each person develops their own additional strategies that help them reboot and allow the mind to be a positive space.

For me personally, yoga, music, gardening, cooking, spending time with cats, and any artistic pursuits are all activities that help me regain mental balance and restore positive energy to my thoughts. For you, the list will probably be different, which is wonderful. Everyone needs to learn in recovery what things they can do to supplement their program that make them feel happy and spiritually whole.

If I don’t take action to keep my thinking positive, I can and will slip into self-loathing, laziness, and irritability, all traits that do not become me, and also feelings that once drove me to drink and use.

Remembering throughout the day to keep the mind a pleasant neighborhood, utilizing whatever tools work for you, will keep your serenity in tact, which in turn will keep your recovery strong.

So, cliche as is sounds, think positive: It will keep you sober.

Celebrity drug-related deaths

Though the recent death of Corey Haim may not have been a drug overdose (the toxicology report has yet to be released), there has been a lot of speculation that drugs were involved.

This could simply be because of the actor’s well-known struggle with drug and alcohol addiction, but it has been confirmed that illegal prescription drugs were found in his residence and Haim has now been linked to a massive illegal prescription drug ring. We’ll find out more in the coming weeks I imagine. Nevertheless, the tragedy got me thinking about the past year, and those we have lost to the disease of alcoholism and drug addiction.

The year 2009 ended with a long list of celebrity drug-related deaths, and I think all of us in recovery can empathize with their struggle. Some of the more well-known celebrities whose deaths last year have something to do with drugs, both legal and illegal, are:

1. Michael Jackson: Jackson’s death was by far one of the most shocking celebrity deaths in 2009. Jackson died on June 25 after he was given lethal doses of the powerful anesthetic Propofol by his personal doctor, Conrad Murray. On top of the Propofol, Murray also had given Jackson valium, lorazepam, and midazolam the morning the King of Pop passed away. The Los Angeles coroner had decided to treat Jackson’s death as a homicide. Law enforcement officials are also currently conducting a manslaughter investigation of Murray.

2. Adam Goldstein, aka DJ AM: Goldstein’s body was discovered in his apartment on August 28, 2009. The medical examiner’s report showed that Goldstein had died of acute intoxication due to the combined effects of cocaine and the prescription drugs OxyContin, Hydrocodone or Vicodin, Xanax, Ativan, Klonopin, Benadryl and Levamisole, a drug that is apparently being used to cut cocaine. Ironically, DJ AM’s drug-related death came a little over a month after he survived a deadly plane crash along with friend and Blink 182 drummer Travis Barker.

Of course this year we’ve already lost Brittany Murphy to drugs and who knows who else we will lose. Countless people die from the disease of addiction and alcoholism each year, and if left untreated it’s widely accepted that there are three places we end up: jails, institutions or dead.

Do you want to end up jailed, institutionalized, or dead? I sure don’t. That’s why I’m grateful each day for my own recovery, and hopeful for my friends in recovery.

What are you grateful for?

Study supports treating PTSD and substance abuse simultaneously

A recent RCT study of 353 women that were assigned to either 12 sessions of trauma-focused or health education group treatment showed that PTSD severity reductions were more likely associated with substance use improvement, whereas minimal reduction in PTSD was found with substance use reduction.

These findings have important implications because of the high rate of comorbidity between PTSD and drug addiction. These findings also support earlier research.

This research calls into question the commonly held assumption that abstinence from substances should be gained before undertaking exposure therapy. The previously held assumption that beginning trauma therapy before reduction or elimination of substance use will lead to an increase in substance use has not been borne out.

The evidence suggests that when treating comorbid PTSD and substance use the clinicians should actively initiate integrated treatment to address the PTSD actively while working on the substance abuse.

At Safe Harbor’s Capella Treatment Center for women both PTSD and drug addiction can be dealt with at the same time in a safe environment. Find more information here.

Jason Wahler arrested for DUI…again

Jason Wahler, former star of The Hills, was arrested for the sixth time in four years on March 19 in Newport Beach, Calif., at approximately 11 p.m. for driving while intoxicated.

Video tape taken a week prior to this arrest shows the actor being handcuffed by police in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico after a fight broke out at a local nightclub.

In 2007, Wahler was accused of battery and sentenced to 60 days in jail. Instead of serving his time, he was allowed to complete a stint in an inpatient treatment center. Also in 2007, he served 18 days in the slammer for assaulting a minor while intoxicated.

Wahler has said that he is prone to blackouts while drinking, and it’s not hard to believe. But the sad part about this is that there are certainly steps that he can take to end this madness.

For those who are struggling with drug and alcohol addiction as Wahler is and don’t want to keep digging their own grave, entering a drug and alcohol treatment center that is based off the 12-step recovery program is a special opportunity to get your life back.

It’s never too late to start a program of recovery. Are you ready to find some serenity?

Drug Addiction Treatment for Women

The importance of offering drug addiction treatment for women cannot be over emphasized. Research has shown that women react more positively to treatment when they are in a gender-specific treatment environment. In the past, drug treatment programs were designed and driven by males. Though men and women both suffer and struggle with the disease of addiction, women have unique and differing needs than men. It stands to reason, that the therapeutic styles and approaches developed and used during the past in the male oriented treatment environment may not be suitable or beneficial to women seeking help for their addiction.

In 1993, Velvet Mangan, the founder and owner of Safe Harbor Treatment Center for Women, understood the distinct differences between the needs men and women seeking help from drug treatment facilities. She saw the necessity of creating drug addiction treatment for women, which offered a safe and nurturing environment where women suffering from addiction would thrive, heal and begin their journey of recovery. Velvet Mangan has been a pioneer in the development of innovative drug addiction treatment for women suffering from drug and alcohol addiction. Safe Harbor Treatment Center for Women is designed for the unique and specific needs of women; with a therapeutic environment that allows women to focus on core issues such as self-esteem, trauma, shame, body image, codependency, nutrition, and relationships. This nurturing environment plays a key role in creating the opportunity for women to recognize and process beliefs, attitudes and behaviors that can are essential for healing to occur. Drug addiction treatment for women is also therapeutically beneficial for women that have survived traumatic life experiences. Without the presence of men, women are capable of facing their trauma and healing from their past traumatic experiences in a supportive, loving setting.

Another benefit to drug addiction treatment for women is that these treatment facilities provide women the opportunity to develop healthy, positive relationships with other women that is imperative in building a strong foundation of recovery. Women are able to learn to trust other women, who can most help them in their journey during and following completion of a drug addiction treatment program for women specifically. As a result of the gender-specific environment, women are able to begin rebuilding their lives and truly concentrate on their sobriety, recovery, and healthy living choices.

An alumnus of Safe Harbor Treatment Center for Women shares her story.
I am so grateful that there is specific Drug addiction treatment for women, or I don’t know where I would be today. My life as a young women suffering from addiction had taken its toll on me physically, mentally and spiritually. The drinking and drugs that had once filled a hole and made me feel “normal” now where destroying me, but I couldn’t stop. I felt as though I was rotting with an addiction I could not hope to cure.  I was suffering, that much was true.
Though I didn’t know it at the time, my addiction started at an early age. I was obsessed with watching my mother take the orange, prescription bottle off the shelf and dole out the tiny white pills to my brother every morning before school.  Naturally, I followed suit.  I started to lose my focus in class; paying attention was becoming more and more of an unattainable task, and one I could no longer master, so one day, in exasperation, my mother gave me a Ritalin.  Although it didn’t really affect me, I assured her it increased my concentration, calculating that I could probably get more if I said this.  I remember so well, I remember sitting at my little desk, looking out the window; I can recall with distinct clarity the exact moment I looked up at my mother and said, “Yeah, I think this will really help me.”  At the time I could not know it, but this was the beginning of my addiction.

By the age of 17, I had lost myself. I no longer recognized myself in the mirror. I was filled with self-loathing, shame and guilt. But those feelings did little to stop my drinking and drug use. I was leading a self-centered life and my days were consumed with the obsession of finding drugs or alcohol. I had lost so many friendships. At some point, I don’t know when, but I crossed the line from social drinking with my peers to drinking and using drugs everyday. Not only was I on a self-destructive path, but I was destroying my family as they struggled to cope with my behavior, my failing grades, my depression to name only a few of negative consequences my drinking and drug use was causing.  I was spiraling out of control.

Drug Addiction Treatment for Women was my only hope. I am so thankful I was sent to Safe Harbor Treatment Center for Women. At first, Safe Harbor seemed like a warped, Lifetime afternoon movie; sunny, smiley faces peered at me from behind designer sunglasses; it was as if I were watching the young women on a different TV frequency, the images blurred and static.  A refrain of “It will get better” became the women’s theme song.  Somewhere within the first month of my treatment I began to enjoy waking up in the morning; mopping the kitchen floor became a time of relaxation and refuge, and I realized I was actually becoming what people referred to as ‘happy.’  Initially afraid of women, I gradually began to trust that the girls were offering sincere help. This was one of the greatest benefits of coming to a facility whose focus was on drug addiction treatment for women.  Two years later, I work at Safe Harbor Treatment Center for Women and I could not be more grateful.  I barely have any male friends; all of my friends are women!  I am able to offer our women my experience, strength and hope, and act as a living example that drug addiction treatment for women can and does work.  The women who come to Safe Harbor remind me so much of myself, and it is an amazing blessing to be able to shepherd them through their first ninety days of drug addiction treatment for women.  I thank God every day for the blessings I’ve been given, and for the opportunity to work within the drug addiction treatment for women field.

Alcohol Treatment Los Angeles

ALCOHOL TREATMENT: LOS ANGELES AND ORANGE COUNTY RECOVERY

For those in search of alcohol treatment Los Angeles and its surrounding areas have much to offer in the way of recovery resources. Though Southern California’s reputation is seeped in excess, a new health-conscious culture has developed in the region over the last two decades, which has brought with it a plethora of rehabilitation programs. As the area has transformed into a vibrant recovery niche, the area has become more and more suited for alcohol treatment. Los Angeles and Orange Counties in particular have risen to the occasion, developing and fine-tuning a wide variety of treatment centers geared toward different populations. Any alcoholic looking for treatment is sure to find an ideally suited program in this geographical region.

UNDERSTANDING ALCOHOLISM

Alcoholism is complex because it is both a mental and physical disease. Physically, addiction to alcohol is fairly straightforward. With regular consumption, the body grows accustomed to the presence of alcohol, readjusting its definition of normality to include this foreign substance. The physical systems of the body become used to operating under the influence of alcohol. Because the body’s baseline has come to include alcohol, more and more alcohol is required over time to produce the same affects. For this reason, alcoholics will often be capable of consuming a tremendous volume of alcohol without showing outward signs of inebriation. When alcohol ceases to enter an alcoholic’s physical systems, problems occur. Shaking, sweating, sleeplessness, and vomiting are only some of the symptoms of alcohol withdrawal.  In severe cases, alcohol withdrawal may cause seizures and even death. Because of the dangerous nature of this unavoidable part of getting sober, it is crucial that alcoholics detoxify their bodies within the confines of alcohol treatment. Los Angeles rehabilitation facilities begin their programs with a detoxification period, followed by an extended therapeutic treatment plan.

More complex than the physical addiction is the psychological component of the disease of alcoholism. Many problem drinkers have a hard time admitting to themselves that their alcohol consumption has become an issue, even when others may find this fact to be obvious. It is the mental aspect of alcoholism that causes its victims to deny that they are affected by it. Because the disease is mentally synonymous to a belief that consuming poison is maintaining one’s health, alcoholics have profound fear of sobriety and often refuse alcohol treatment.  Los Angeles rehabilitation facilities, as some of the finest in the nation, design their programs to accommodate this psychological conundrum. Effective alcohol treatment, Los Angeles or elsewhere, emphasizes the psychological aspect of alcoholism and, in turn, the psychological aspect of recovery.

Most alcoholics are people who have a difficult time coping with the stress of everyday life. Unable to deal with seemingly innocuous situations when sober, these individuals tend to be people who struggled psychologically and emotionally as children and adolescents, before they began to abuse alcohol. Upon discovering that alcohol numbed the psychological and emotional pain that plagued them, drinking became a means of self-protection. For some of these people, the numbing effects of alcohol seemed to cure serious mental illnesses like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), bipolar disorder, and others.  Alcoholics of this variety rely on drinking in order to function on a day-to-day basis.  This explains why the prospect of leaving alcohol behind forever is terrifying to those plagued by alcoholism.

Unfortunately, while alcohol may act as an anesthetic in the short-term, it only worsens preexisting mental and emotional problems in the long-term.  This is where the poison analogy comes into play. Alcoholics believe that drinking is the only thing that keeps them functional, when in reality, alcohol abuse compounds other issues, resulting in a more serious level of debilitation than they started with.  The only way to ensure that alcoholic individuals receive the physical and mental care they need in early sobriety is to utilize a program of alcohol treatment.  Los Angeles and other Southern California locales offer rehabilitation programs that approach recovery from this bi-lateral perspective.

GETTING HELP: ALCOHOL TREATMENT

Once alcoholics reach the point when they can no longer deny the problems drinking is creating in their lives, they are in an ideal position to begin alcohol treatment. Los Angeles and Orange County offer an impressive array of treatment options, and the added benefits of warm weather and proximity to the ocean make them even more enticing as recovery destinations. Orange County, home to the largest active 12-step community in the world, is a particularly prime treatment locale. This area hosts more around-the-clock 12-step meetings of all varieties than any other geographical location.

When choosing a facility for alcohol treatment, Los Angeles and Orange County provide the option of a gender-specific treatment program. While alcoholism is a disease that can strike any person and does not discriminate based on gender, there is no doubt that the disease affects the two sexes in distinct ways. Female and male alcoholics show different emotional and mental symptoms, and they tend to incur different types of consequences as a result of their drinking. Female alcoholics, whose drinking often produces depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, and codependency, benefit greatly from an intimate and nurturing environment in alcohol treatment.  Los Angeles and Orange County’s prime rehabilitation facilities for women offer this dynamic.

Women also tend to experience more verbal, physical, and sexual abuse as a result of their alcohol-centered lifestyles than men. An all-women’s treatment facility, like Safe Harbor Treatment Center for Women in Costa Mesa, California, customizes each woman’s treatment plan to accommodate past trauma she may have experienced in her years of drinking. Safe Harbor’s treatment environment, a small community of warm-hearted women, ensures that those who are coming to terms with trauma feel safe and secure. Safe Harbor’s treatment program allows women from all backgrounds to come together as they strive to leave alcohol behind and create better lives for themselves.

If you, or someone you know is looking for a second chance at life, call us today. We are here to help.

Drug Abuse Treatment Programs

DRUG ABUSE TREATMENT PROGRAMS: HELP IS AVAILABLE

For individuals who have a history of using drugs in excess, drug abuse treatment programs provide the opportunity and the necessary tools to start life anew.

WHAT IS DRUG ABUSE?

Drug abuse can be defined as excessive or gratuitous use of drugs.  Though using drugs is never a wise choice, there are those who choose to use drugs recreationally and do so sparingly.  Drug abusers are those who use in excess, allowing drugs to interfere with their priorities in life.  Drug abuse treatment programs help these individuals get their lives back on the right track and learn how to live without drugs and alcohol.

HOW TO TELL IF A LOVED ONE IS USING DRUGS

An individual who is abusing drugs will display both physical and psychological signs. The physical symptoms of drug abuse are often the most pronounced.  Individuals who have begun to abuse drugs will often exhibit a rapid change in weight (usually weight loss, but weight gain can also be a symptom).  Abnormal eating habits and unusual sleep patterns are other signs of drug abuse that are quite noticeable to close friends and family.  Prolonged drug use causes a generally unhealthy appearance and demeanor – sallow or pale complexion, bloodshot eyes, congestion, and persistent cough can all be signifiers of a drug habit. The first stage of all drug abuse treatment programs is physical detoxification, in which the body reacquaints itself to sobriety.

The psychological signs of drug abuse can be subtler and usually take longer to develop. The first psychological ramifications of drug abuse tend to be chronic depression and heightened anxiety levels. Over time, particularly with the use of amphetamines or other “uppers,” paranoia can set in, and delusions are not uncommon. Drug abuse treatment programs help drug abusers break these mental patterns.

Mysterious and secretive behavior is almost always noticeable in drug abusers.  Because of the illegal and stigmatized nature of drug use, those who abuse drugs tend to be evasive and reclusive, keeping distance between their loved ones and their drug habit.  Drug abusers will likely have a significant quantity of drugs and paraphernalia hidden within their living space.

If someone you love is acting strangely, exhibiting physical abnormalities, and distancing themselves from you and others, they may be abusing drugs.  Drug abuse treatment programs can help.

HOW CAN YOU HELP?

If you believe that a loved one is abusing drugs, research drug abuse treatment programs before confronting them about their problem.  Understanding drug abuse and how drug abuse treatment programs function will help you keep the confrontation productive and focused on solution.

Drug abusers are usually resistant to the idea of treatment.  Unless they have experienced significant negative consequences of their drug use, they are unlikely to want to undergo the challenging experience of getting sober. Though it is extremely difficult to set boundaries with those you love, family and close friends have the power to awaken drug abusers to the severity of their problem by doing just that.  Often, these boundaries will relate to financial support.  For example, the mother of a drug abuser may need to tell her daughter that she can no longer live under her roof if she continues to use drugs.  A friend may need to refuse to spend time around her closest comrade when she is under the influence. When a drug abuser finally realizes what they have to lose, they will be more receptive when drug abuse treatment programs are presented as a potential solution.

DRUG ABUSE TREATMENT PROGRAMS: HOW IT WORKS

Drug abuse treatment programs help drug abusers recover physically, emotionally and psychologically from long-term substance abuse, providing them with the tools they need to start living happily and healthfully. The best drug treatment programs utilize a multifaceted treatment approach to emphasize a balanced lifestyle. Drug abusers heal physically by developing healthy eating habits and exercise routines.  They heal emotionally by learning to relate to others and cope with life’s stresses in a productive manner.

Drug abuse can be either a cause or a symptom of psychological problems, but most often it is a combination of the two. As previously mentioned, there are clear psychological side effects to prolonged drug abuse. The complications that arise as a result of substance abuse can usually be alleviated with the help of drug abuse treatment programs.  The psychological issues that are more difficult to correct are those that predate drug use. These are the same issues that are often responsible for an individual’s initial attraction to drugs. Though it can take years to work through deep psychological problems, drug abuse treatment programs take the crucial first step by removing substances and introducing individual therapy.

For women with a history of drug abuse, it is wise to choose a gender-specific treatment program, as an all-female environment creates a safe space in which women can speak openly about all aspects of their drug abuse. Safe Harbor Treatment Center for Women is highly regarded amongst drug abuse treatment programs, due to both its effective treatment plan and its nurturing community. Safe Harbor Treatment Center is determined to help women learn the skills that will allow them to lead full and happy lives.  Healthy living, especially for women recovering from drug abuse, is a matter of maintaining spiritual, physical, mental and emotional balance.

Safe Harbor’s treatment program nurtures women in all of these areas. Structured groups on nutrition, body image and eating disorders help women tackle issues that can keep them physically sick even after drugs are out of the picture. Meditation, yoga and tai chi help women foster a spiritual connection. Emotionally and psychologically, group and individual therapy help women start to work through their core issues.

What makes Safe Harbor truly unique is its tight-knit community of residents, alumnae, support staff and counselors, all women who have recovered from alcohol and drug abuse. This common bond between all members of the community makes Safe Harbor feel like a family, rather than a facility. Any woman looking to leave drug abuse behind her and begin a healthy and fulfilling life has a home waiting for her at Safe Harbor.

Drug Addiction Treatment

DRUG ADDICTION TREATMENT

Drug addiction treatment functions as a safe haven for the addict, isolating him or her from environmental stresses that create the desire to use. By distancing the addict from work-related pressure, uncomfortable social situations, family conflict, and other potential triggers, the likelihood of relapse in the first stage of recovery is significantly lessened.

Unfortunately, cleansing the system of chemicals is only the tip of the iceberg. Drug addiction is a multidimensional affliction and takes its toll in all areas of the addict’s life. Because the disease shows many faces, drug addiction treatment must be similarly multifaceted. Effective drug addiction treatment must, first and foremost, help an individual stop using drugs. However, this treatment must also help the individual make practical lifestyle choices, create healthy relationships, and function in the workplace and society at large.

Addiction is a chronic disease and can never be fully cured. Even when an addict manages to abstain from using for a period of time, there can be no guarantees that he or she will not relapse. It is crucial that drug addiction treatment provide a set of tools that addicts can carry with them long after leaving the treatment program. The multidimensional approach to drug addiction treatment is effective because it not only eliminates drugs from the body, but also attempts to work through other life problems that made escape through drugs sound so appealing in the first place. Effective drug addiction treatment counteracts the disruptive effects drugs have had on the brain and helps addicts change their behavior in ways that restore sanity to their lives.

WHY CAN’T ADDICTS JUST STOP?

When an individual begins using drugs, he or she usually believes that this drug use is a recreational activity – something that is voluntary. However, once drug users become addicted, they will often try to quit on their own, only to find that they cannot maintain abstinence. Long-term drug abuse changes a person’s brain chemistry, making it impossible for many addicts to abstain without drug addiction treatment. The brain is altered in such a way that the addict is incapable of resisting a drug craving even when using is sure to bring unfavorable consequences. This phenomenon of persistent drug use in spite of negative consequences is the key characteristic of drug addiction.

Addiction is generally perceived as a behavioral pattern; the underlying biology of the disease is not widely understood. Those who view addiction in this oversimplified context may not understand the necessity of drug addiction treatment. However, once addiction is established as a physical disease of the brain, a disease whose survival requires the rewiring of the neurological system, it is clear that drug addiction treatment is the best way to assist this process, thereby arresting the behavioral pattern of using.

TYPES OF THERAPIES USED IN DRUG ADDICTION TREATMENT

Although the 12-step model is a universally applicable and effective program of recovery, most individuals suffering from drug addiction struggle with related issues that are not addressed specifically in 12-step programs. The wide variety of experiences and co-occuring addictions and disorders that affect drug addicted persons necessitate a flexible program of drug addiction treatment.

The essential element of drug addiction treatment that 12-step programs exclude is therapy. Individual psychotherapy sessions allow addicts to work through whatever core issues they are facing in a safe space with the assistance of a trained professional. Facing these issues, many of which relate to past trauma, can clear the slate so that drugs are no longer needed to insulate the patient from these painful memories.  Therapy sessions may also make use of cognitive-behavioral therapy as a means of confronting situational triggers that have the potential to cause a relapse. Through various methods, this type of therapy modifies drug-related ideas and behaviors and enforces positive coping mechanisms. Group therapy sessions and workshops are also powerful tools in drug addiction treatment, allowing addicts to find common ground and begin to understand that they are not alone in the disease of addiction.

MEDICATION AND DRUG ADDICTION TREATMENT

Drug addiction is a dual-system disease – it affects both the mind and the body.  Just as behavioral therapy helps a drug addicted individual re-calibrate so that the individual can function in the world, medication can be used to help the body re-adapt to functioning sober. This is especially helpful in the earliest stage of recovery, when withdrawal symptoms are acute.  With medication, detoxification can be significantly less traumatic. There are also cases where continued use of medication is recommended.  For the most part, these are cases where treatable psychological conditions preempted drug use. Though drugs are often a poor choice of medication for afflictions like anxiety disorder and chronic depression, they are nevertheless used in this manner – as a self-prescribed medication. By replacing these improvised “medications” with psychologically appropriate pharmaceuticals, it is possible to give these addicts relief from the mental conditions that drove them to use drugs.

COMMITTING TO DRUG ADDICTION TREATMENT

The moment when an addict realizes that drugs have caused his or her life to become unmanageable is the most pivotal moment in recovery. In this so-called “moment of clarity,” the addict has a unique opportunity to throw in the towel and commit to change. It is crucial that drug addiction treatment be introduced as a course of action at this time. Though it is possible for some addicts to cease using drugs without entering a residential drug addiction treatment program, many need the structured and protected environment offered in such a program in order to make it through the physically, mentally and emotionally painful detoxification period. A drug addiction treatment program also cultivates a support system of mentors and peers in recovery who can remain valuable resources long after treatment is completed.

Sadly, there is no cure for drug addiction. Like other chronic illnesses, it requires a persistent course of treatment, and can be characterized by relapses. Trying to fight this disease alone is akin to trying to will the body to free itself of cancer – a hopeless battle. With the help of appropriate tools, however, people suffering from drug addiction can restore sanity to their lives. Drug addiction treatment provides the necessary care to maximize chances of recovery. With a sincere commitment to change and the support of a treatment program, recovery is possible for any drug addict, no matter how dire the situation.

Drug Treatment Center

DRUG TREATMENT CENTER: STARTING RECOVERY ON THE RIGHT NOTE

Safe Harbor Treatment Center for Women is a drug treatment center created to facilitate the physical, mental and spiritual recovery of female alcoholics and drug addicts. The homey beach-town ambiance of Safe Harbor Treatment Center is peaceful and comfortable, designed to function as a safe haven in which addicts can rehabilitate themselves. Safe Harbor’s drug treatment center is the first leg of the journey into a better life for many female addicts and alcoholics. For one whose life is crumbling under the weight of drugs and alcohol, enrollment in a treatment program like Safe Harbor’s is the best chance of survival.

WHAT IS A DRUG TREATMENT CENTER AND WHAT DOES DRUG TREATMENT ENTAIL?

A successful alcohol and drug treatment center aims to help addicts confront the source of their addiction while adopting life skills that will prevent relapse and promote a sane lifestyle.  In order to attain these goals, Safe Harbor Treatment for Women employs a balance of counseling, structured therapeutic groups and nurturing community activities.

Individual counseling is a crucial component of treatment because it allows the addict to explore the underlying causes of her drug abuse and attempt to address those issues directly.  In many cases addicts suffer from psychological disorders such as chronic depression, anxiety disorder and PTSD, and begin using drugs and alcohol as a self-prescribed medication for these conditions. In this case treatment is dual-diagnosis, and works on these primary issues in tandem with issues pertaining to substance abuse.  Because dual-diagnosed addicts may be emotionally fragile during the exploration of their core issues, these patients are wise to choose a long-term drug treatment center like Safe Harbor, which allows them time to heal in a protected environment.

Also productive components of an effective treatment program, organized groups and workshops focus on helping addicts acquire the tools they will need to avoid drugs and alcohol and lead a productive life.  These groups serve the added purpose of acting as forums where women can get to know one another intimately and come to realize that they are not the only ones who have felt the pain that drove them to drink and use, or the pain that resulted once addiction took hold.

The emphasis Safe Harbor’s drug treatment center places on its community environment, ensures that as unhealthy social and behavioral patterns are subtracted from an addict’s life, new healthy patterns are cultivated. The women at Safe Harbor grow together, basing their friendships on the common desire for a better life. Because their bonds are forged in circumstances that are mutually understood to be life-threatening, one women holds another accountable for her actions out of concern for her well-being. The friendships made in a long-term drug treatment center often become lifelong relationships. Safe Harbor Treatment Center encourages women to move into one of the associated sober living houses after completing the 90-day treatment program, and to remain a part of the community after accomplishing a year of sobriety in sober living. Between the support of alumnae of Safe Harbor Treatment Center, 12-step meetings, and outside 12-step sponsors, community plays a major role in the treatment program. All of these continue to provide strength in sobriety long after the addict has left the drug treatment center.

HOW TO CHOOSE THE RIGHT DRUG TREATMENT CENTER

More often than not, the family or friends of an addict are the ones who will select a drug treatment center for her. Choosing a single-sex treatment program will ensure that she recovers in a space where she feels comfortable sharing core issues that are particular to women. Topics like body image and eating disorders, domestic violence and sexual abuse all directly or indirectly involve feeling disempowered by men, and are therefore topics that can only be explored in a drug treatment center for women.  It is crucial that these root problems be addressed in treatment, as they are often precisely the problems which made escape from life via drugs such an appealing prospect to begin with.

It is also imperative to choose a program that practices credible treatment methods and employs well-trained staff who intimately understand the disease of addiction. At Safe Harbor Treatment Center for Women, all of the staff are women in recovery, making them ideally suited mentors for female addicts starting out their sobriety. This sympathetic staff offers a degree of care and nurturing that surpasses the status quo.

DOES GOING TO A DRUG TREATMENT CENTER ENSURE LIFELONG SOBRIETY?

Sadly, there is no cure for alcohol and drug addiction – it is a chronic disease. Relapse is, unfortunately, a part of the recovery process for many individuals. The aim of treatment is to arm the addict with defenses against relapse, and instill in her the understanding that she must be constantly vigilant. Treatment is successful to the degree that the addict is willing to utilize the tools she is given. Even the best drug treatment center can provide no guarantee of permanent sobriety, but there are many individuals who never consume a drink or a drug after the moment they truly commit to living sober.

WHY THE ADDICT HAS NOTHING TO BE ASHAMED OF

Drug treatment is a growing industry, as drug addiction and alcoholism are on the rise. The more these diseases become accepted as such, rather than judged as poor behavioral choices, the more their victims can be successfully treated. We are living in an era where the disease of addiction is going public – it is becoming irrevocably clear that this is a disease that takes victims without notice of gender, race, religion or socioeconomic background. Because a growing number of public figures are being outed as alcoholics and drug addicts, it is becoming easier to see that seeking help for addiction is no cause for shame. On the contrary, the courage it takes to admit defeat and welcome the hard work it takes to start life anew is commendable. Safe Harbor Treatment Center for Women recognizes bravery in the broken addicts who come through its doors. Every woman who joins the Safe Harbor community has the opportunity to turn her life around, and to help other women suffering from addiction do the same. Those who seize these opportunities are able to shed the burden of addiction and become the amazing women they truly are.

Drug Treatment Centers in Southern California

Drug treatment centers in Southern California have become more prevalent in the last five years. Over and over, clinical studies have proven the greater efficacy of long-term treatment for drug and alcohol dependency versus short-term treatment. Across the state of California, literally hundreds of treatment centers decorate the coastline, each offering a unique twist on a month’s worth of holistic treatment for substance abuse. Forthcoming are specialized outpatient clinics, geared towards the busy professional who simply cannot take time off from work to treat the behemoth, life-threatening illness known as drug addiction.

Long-term drug treatment centers are rapidly becoming the norm, especially in California.  These days, most long-term drug treatment centers in Southern California are comprised of thirty days in an acute, primary care facility, followed by a ninety day period of extended care, and tailed by a transition to the program’s sober living home, interspersed with weekly check-in and/or process group therapy, as needed.  Clinicians throughout the field agree that continuum of care for the recovering addict or alcoholic is not a luxury, nor the prescription for the direst cases, rather, it’s a necessity, a mandatory ingredient for maintaining continuous, long-term sobriety.

Perhaps the reason that long-term drug treatment centers in Southern California are gaining popularity is because of the staggering impact of chemical dependency on our government’s offers. According to a recent study performed by the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse, CASA, researchers were able to quantify an amount spent by all levels of government, federal, state and local, on addiction and substance abuse; this is the first time any type of economic analysis has ever attempted to ascertain the dollar amount addiction costs American society.

Findings indicate that “of every federal and state dollar spent, 96 cents goes to shovel up wreckage of illness, crime, social ills; only 2 cents goes to prevention and treatment.” Thus, of the near half a trillion tax dollars spent in 2005 alone on substance abuse and addiction, only a paltry two percent of the funding was allocated towards drug rehabilitation, a statistic that’s literally howling for policy reform. To date, the vast majority of policy for a chemically dependent America has been focused on prevention and interdiction, with far fewer efforts aimed towards actually treating the already addicted patient. Research is beginning to show that drug addiction and alcoholism are giving way to a mounting public health crisis, and that long-term drug treatment centers in Southern California might be the only way to quiet the epidemic.

There is a startling contrast between twentieth century First Ladies’ opinions on how to tackle the addiction issue: in one corner we have former first lady, Hilary Clinton claiming, “our insatiable demand for illegal drugs fuels the drug trade,” while in another, we watched Betty Ford struggle with, and eventually conquer, her battle with alcoholism, proceeding to found and fund what would become one of the nation’s leading treatment centers. Then again, who could forget Nancy Regan’s earnest attempt to convince children to “Just Say No” and the exorbitant amount of federal dollars we spent on its proclamation, to little or nearly no avail. In a post “Just Say No” slogan era, drug use has peaked at an all time high, partially due to the rising popularity of prescription drugs and their availability on the Internet. The advent of Vicodin and Valium for sale on the world-wide web ushered in a new era of drug abuse, wherein addicts could circumvent dealing with unsavory dope slingers and merely surrender their credit card information online to a fast-track pharmacy that provided overnight delivery service, an in-home dealer suddenly a mouse click away.

Clearly the solutions current policy is offering are not working for the over fifteen million Americans who find themselves feeding a habit and in need of drug and alcohol treatment centers in Southern California.

Historically, short term, month-long rehab stays have not provided a substantial ‘cure’ for the disease of addiction and alcoholism; research indicates long-term drug and alcohol treatment centers in Southern California are proving themselves significantly more effective. Studies have shown, repeatedly, that the longer a recovering person is exposed to rehabilitation and treatment – the better chances that person has of maintaining abstinence.

The number of drug and alcohol treatment centers in Southern California far exceeds that of any other state in the country, with Orange County being one of the most concentrated areas for long-term treatment. Many long-term drug treatment centers in Southern California are run on the phase system, commencing with 30-45 days of intense, cognitive behavioral therapy, both in a group and individual setting, wherein the last month of treatment is spent focused on obtaining employment and life skills, with a gradual return of privileges as each goal are achieved. One such model is found at Safe Harbor Treatment Center for Women, in Costa Mesa, California, which offers what you are looking for in long-term drug treatment centers in Southern California.

At Safe Harbor Treatment Center for Women, founder Velvet Mangan offers unique insight about the clinical, emotional, spiritual and physical benefits of long-term drug treatment centers in Southern California when she says, “Thirty days rarely offers enough time for the client to redevelop her self-esteem; at least ninety days are needed in order for the young woman to reposition her mind to make different choices and learn healthy habits. The subconscious mind requires time to change, and if that process is short-circuited, her recovery could be sabotaged.”  Long-term drug treatment centers in Southern California runs the gamut from private pay (like the aforementioned, affordable Safe Harbor) to complimentary (albeit, often compulsory) county-funded programs, with managed care options filling in the gaps.

Overcrowding in California state prisons and budgetary constraints were largely responsible for the introduction of Prop 36, wherein legislators ostensibly admitted, and “We no longer have room for you drug offenders behind bars, so guess what- you’re cordially invited to go to treatment.”  The treatment approach has dramatically changed the landscape of our judicial system and has resulted in fewer drug-related crimes, a statistic that Republicans and Democrats alike are lauding.  Long-term drug treatment centers in Southern California are on the rise, what with the demand, due to Prop 36, and with a more results-focused approach to conquering addiction and alcoholism. Doctors and addiction specialists agree that some form of continuum of care is necessary for recovering citizens to remain abstinent, and though the preferred settings may vary, ranging from monitoring to outpatient to the more robust, inpatient residential programs, both seasoned practitioners and rehab veterans have experienced greater degrees of success when long-term treatment is followed through to completion.

Long Term Drug Treatment

Long-term drug treatment programs give addicts the best chance at recovery by sheltering and nurturing them during the vulnerable early stages of sobriety. Unlike 30-day or outpatient treatment programs, long term drug treatment programs acknowledge that the disease of addiction is a deadly foe that warrants aggressive and thorough opposition.

UNDERSTANDING ADDICTION

Those who have not experienced drug addiction firsthand are often perplexed at the behavior of addicts. It is particularly painful for the family and friends of a drug addict to witness the process of self-destruction, and it is difficult for these loved ones to understand that an addict in the midst of his or her disease is incapable of stopping; even for the sake of those they love most dearly.

Addiction is often misconstrued as the simple result of poor decision-making. This is a drastically oversimplified understanding of the condition. For a true addict, the idea of choice is a foreign concept. An addict must use, even when he or she wants desperately to stop. The only way to break this destructive pattern is by means of a complete overhaul of the addict’s life. The reconstruction must be external, changing circumstances and behaviors, but it must also affect the addict’s emotional and mental climates.

Only by treating the disease of addiction from the inside out can true recovery take place. Long term drug treatment allows addicts the time they need to delve into these deeper psychological aspects of addiction.

GETTING HELP

For most addicts, it is difficult to come to terms with the fact that reaching out for help, or at least accepting help that is offered, is a necessity. For most people who use drugs and alcohol in excess, these substances function as something of a self-prescribed medication for psychological, emotional or physical pain. The addict grows attached to the idea that their use of the substance is saving them; it is helping them survive. Addicts hold onto this notion of the substance as a solution, even when it becomes blatant to others that the substance is, or has become, the problem. Because addicts tend to have this medication-like relationship with their drugs of choice, it is hard for them to accept that they are powerless over these substances.

When circumstances become dire enough that the addict tries to stop using, only to find it impossible, he or she may come to understand that such a feat cannot be accomplished without help. These moments of despair are valuable windows of opportunity. Even a temporary comprehension of the devastation drugs have wreaked on an individual’s life is enough to inspire this individual to make the decision get help by committing to a long term drug treatment program.

WHY CHOOSE LONG TERM DRUG TREATMENT?

Unfortunately, the consumption of drugs and alcohol is not the only issue that needs to be addressed in recovery. While these behaviors (and perhaps other destructive behaviors) are the most obvious problems, there are always other issues under the surface that need just as desperately to be explored.

The root cause of addiction can be described as an inability to cope with life, both externally and internally. People who feel enticed by drugs tend to be people who, for one reason or another, want to escape from themselves. Common causes for this escapist mindset are psychological conditions like chronic depression, anxiety and bipolar disorder, as well as traumatic experiences like physical and sexual abuse. If we think of getting high as a means of escaping one’s own mind, where all of this pain is housed, we can understand how other behaviors which provide a similar exit strategy can be equally enticing, and equally dangerous.

The disease of addiction manifests in many ways, and usually in multiple ways. Those who suffer from drug addiction and alcoholism are also likely to engage in eating disorders, sex addiction, codependency, gambling or shopping addictions, and self-mutilation. Because the disease of addiction has such a broad root cause, and such a broad effect, long term drug treatment is the only way to truly address addiction in its entirety.

In order to stop using drugs, individuals must come to understand what triggers them to use, and develop new coping strategies. Addicts must also abstain completely from any other addictive behaviors that prevent these new healthy coping mechanisms from taking hold. These are no easy tasks. As creatures of habit and comfort, addicts tend to be people who are terrified of change, making the idea of an entirely new life intimidating. Long term drug treatment takes the process of restructuring an addict’s entire life seriously and allows this process enough time to unfold.

SAFE HARBOR LONG TERM DRUG TREATMENT FOR WOMEN

Addiction has a devastating effect on the lives of both men and women, but the specifics of the way it takes hold differ depending on gender. For women suffering from the disease of addiction, the psychological, emotional and situational circumstances surrounding addiction are unique, and need to be acknowledged as such.

Safe Harbor Treatment Center for Women in Costa Mesa, California understands that recovery for a woman is different than it is for a man, and that women have the best chance at success when they are able to recover in a protected all-female setting. Through a multilateral treatment program comprised of structured therapeutic groups, individual therapy, 12 step meetings, life skills development and uplifting activities, Safe Harbor optimizes the effectiveness of long term drug treatment. All aspects of Safe Harbor’s treatment program are tailored to suit a woman’s experience of addiction, allowing female addicts to explore any and all experiences and feelings that relate to their drug use without feeling stifled by the presence of men.

Safe Harbor’s open and loving environment allows profound growth to take place every day within its community. In addition to women enrolled in the 90-day treatment program, Safe Harbor is home to roughly thirty women who reside in its sober living homes, all of whom serve as mentors to women in the treatment program. Safe Harbor is not only a well-regarded long term drug treatment center, but also a community of women whose unity and will to recover is unparalleled.  Any woman looking to leave drug addiction behind her and commence a new way of living has a home waiting for her at Safe Harbor.