Residential Treatment: Los Angeles and Orange County Rehabilitation Among the multitude of geographical settings for residential treatment, Los Angeles and its surrounding areas stand out as a stronghold of active recovery. If you or someone you love has a problem with alcohol or drugs, help is available in residential treatment. Los Angeles and the greater Southern California area are home to many of the nation’s finest drug and alcohol rehabilitation programs, where lives are saved on a daily basis. Recognizing addiction: It is sometimes difficult to identify when drinking and drug use crosses over the line from recreational or sustainable into the territory of unmanageability. For different people, different consequences of substance use register as serious. For one person, emotional distancing from his spouse may be enough to spur a closer look into drinking habits. For another, the severity of her alcohol abuse may not register until her third DUI arrest. Whatever the circumstance that causes a person to recognize that substance use has become a problem, it is likely that other consequences preceded it. For a person who is not addicted to drugs or alcohol, any negative consequence is enough to produce the logical conclusion that this behavior should be discontinued. For an addict or alcoholic, consequences pile up, but none seem so critical that they trump drinking and using. Addicts and alcoholics may lose careers, homes, family and friends before they realize that they must stop at all costs. Getting help: When this moment of clarity arrives, it constitutes an ideal opportunity to introduce the prospect of residential treatment. Los Angeles and Orange Counties’ fine array of treatment programs offers something for everyone, making Southern California an excellent place to begin researching treatment options. Entering a treatment program means committing to sobriety, which can be terrifying for an addict or alcoholic. However, most of these individuals have experience attempting to stop drinking or using on their own, and understand that this method is almost always futile. Such attempts at ceasing to ingest substances without the help of a treatment program can be extremely traumatic, as well as medically dangerous. Because the disease of addiction is an illness that affects both the mind and body, both of these systems panic when suddenly deprived of a substance which they have come to depend on in order to function. Physically, the results of withdrawal can range from uncomfortable to extremely painful. Depending on the substance in question, symptoms can become extremely severe (e.g. seizures) and require medical supervision. Mentally, withdrawal tends to be a disorienting and profoundly disturbing experience. Emotional imbalance is common for the first few weeks of sobriety, and may persist for much longer, another reason that addicts coming off of substances fare best in residential treatment. Los Angeles and Orange Counties’ best treatment programs begin with a medical detoxification period, ensuring that patients are safe which the body returns to its normal state. This period is typically followed by an extended stay in a residential facility, allowing time for the mind to reestablish equilibrium. Why residential treatment? Los Angeles and Orange County programs Some addicts and alcoholics, intimidated by the prospect of putting their entire lives on hold while they get sober, feel more inclined to enter an outpatient treatment program than commit to residential treatment. Los Angeles has many such programs to offer (usually called IOPs), but its most effective treatment options all fall under the category of inpatient or residential programs. It is possible to get sober in an IOP, but success rates are dramatically higher in extended-stay residential treatment. Los Angeles and Orange Counties are prime locales for such facilities due to the combination of uplifting weather and strong 12-step community this region has to offer. The benefit addicts receive from committing 30 or even 90 days of their lives to a residential treatment program is the opportunity to focus one hundred percent of their energy on recovery for this period of time. In our busy lives, we rarely have the chance to devote all of our energy to understanding and improving ourselves as people. This is truly the opportunity provided by residential treatment. Los Angeles and Orange Counties are rich with options in long-term treatment, many of which are gender-specific facilities. These programs have extremely high success rates, as they are designed with the understanding that addiction and alcoholism, while unisex diseases, affect men and women in distinct ways. Safe Harbor: A new home One such facility, which offers a program specifically tailored to the female experience of alcoholism and addiction, is Safe Harbor Treatment Center for Women. One of the top choices for women’s residential treatment, Los Angeles or anywhere else in the nation, Safe Harbor offers a deeply nurturing treatment plan and a one-of-a-kind community. Safe Harbor’s multi-faceted treatment program is comprised of structured therapeutic groups, individual therapy sessions, a personalized treatment plan, 12-step meetings and sponsorship, and life skills development. Groups cover topics such as relapse prevention, body image, eating disorders, nutrition, and healthy relationships, working through substance abuse issues in tandem with other crucial self-care topics. Group therapeutic workshops like experiential therapy, art therapy, and hypnotherapy afford women opportunities to explore core issues that underly their addiction to substances through non-verbal pathways. Underlying all of the structured aspects of Safe Harbor’s comprehensive treatment plan is a spirit of love and sisterhood that one would be hard-pressed to find at another treatment facility. Far from feeling like an institution, Safe Harbor’s residential location feels like a cozy home, and its case managers and support staff like sisters in recovery. For women, the disease of addiction is also a disease of self-loathing and isolation. Safe Harbor Treatment Center combats these powerful forces with female bonding, self-love, and a group-oriented recovery experience. Women have been shows to flourish in nurturing recovery environments like Safe Harbor’s, as this type of setting heals them on an essential level, allowing them to truly begin a new life.