Call today to schedule your free and confidential consultation.

(858) 263-9700

Call today to schedule your free and confidential consultation.

(858) 263-9700


Alcohol Addiction

Alcohol Dependence VS Alcohol Abuse – What is the Difference?

Late nights partying at the club – is ok, every now and again.  Going to the occasional dinner gathering or holiday event, where alcohol is overconsumed, perfectly fine.  Binging daily or making it a continuous habit, not so cool.  This type of dangerous behavior could possibly turn deadly.  Alcohol is cunning, baffling and powerful and it is out to destroy.  It does not discriminate, care what your socioeconomic status is, the size of your family or chosen profession.

Let’s define what alcohol dependence VS alcohol abuse is:

Being dependent on an alcoholic drink, both psychologically and physically.  According to the DSM – 5, in 2013, it was reclassified as alcoholism

Once you take the first drink, you cannot stop.  You are unable to put your drink down and you are powerless over the magical liquid. You are drinking to get drunk, every single day.

Alcoholism has you telling yourself you will quit soon, but you are unable to.  For example, you mark days off on the calendar of when you will give up, the day arrives, and you cannot fathom life without a drink.

Your family and close friends notice your behavior is erratic and your life is unmanageable.

Individuals who regularly are dependent on alcohol have consciously chose to pattern themselves in disengaging full responsibility in all areas of their lives.

Often, we will see dependents significantly increase the amount of alcohol they purchase and drink, they will drink for extended periods of time and behaviors are unpredictable.

According to Alcoholics Anonymous, you might be classified as an alcoholic if you can honestly answer YES to at least four or five of the following questions http://www.aa.org/pages/en_US/is-aa-for-you-twelve-questions-only-you-can-answer.

Alcoholism:  the disease that makes you too selfish to see the havoc you created and care about the people you shattered. quotesgram.com

Alcohol abuse is commonly referred to as consuming way too much, too frequently.  You are off to the races, but you can stop after ten, even if you do not pass out.  You probably bask in the euphoria of drinking 4-5, nightly, most days of the week.

Alcohol is probably the easiest substance to abuse because the potential is there.  It’s legal, and it’s available. – Lance Penny, QuoteHD.com

Alcohol not only destroys us, it hurts people we lovingly care about, in the grueling process.  Sometimes an intervention is necessary when an alcoholic has hit rock bottom.  Our team at Pacific Bay Recovery standby to assist you and your family.

Trained, compassionate and successful healthcare experts want to guide you on your path to recovery.  You are welcome to visit our website for additional information and to ask questions https://www.pacificbayrecovery.com/.

We encourage you to seek treatment with the help of caring specialists.  Our facility is different than any other rehab center because you are not just a number with us.  Each person that checks in to our treatment center is designed a special protocol, tailored to your individual recovery needs!

Remember, one day at a time and do not quit five minutes before your miracle.  We want you to live a life of optimal wellness but that means you will face difficult challenges and you must learn to never give up!

Demi Lovato Hits Rock Bottom — Overdose Serves as a Wake-up Call

 

There is much work to be done and it will take a lot of courage, dedication and fierce resisting of temptations, while learning to recover from abusing drugs

Is it getting hot and saucy in here?  Time to turn up the heat at this party or cool it down to subzero?  Cocktails, slinky skirts, intellectual convos, and working with high-end elite, are what’s in the game.  However, it tends to be the things we don’t say, that could hurt us most.  When we hide behind life’s tremendous tribulations, drowning them with alcohol and drugs and wishing our burdens would magically diminish.  The latest Hollywood icon, Demi Lovato, a 25-year-old popstar, (singer, songwriter, and actress) opens our eyes to the reality of overdose!

Feeling invincible, experiencing fancy liquid courage and posh lifestyles, are all a part of glorifying celeb life.  Turning to a few drinks makes life easier to manage and keeps stress at bay. Drugs…. That is another beast to face and one Demi felt must have been her only solution.  What she wasn’t prepared to do was face rehab, the tumultuous road that lies ahead, towards a healthy journey and making positive decisions that will help her to heal.

Demi has been urged to check herself into a rehab facility after she leaves Cedars – Sinai hospital.  She has a laborious decision to make?  Heal or hurt and the choice is all hers!  Facing rumors, paparazzi, holding ceiling height standards and being in the limelight cannot be easy.  But, there won’t be any of that if she continues on this path.

R E H A B …. A scary word for some, comfort for others!  Perspective is everything when it comes to discussing your road to recovery!

There is much work to be done and it will take a lot of courage, dedication and fierce resisting of temptations while learning to recover from abusing drugs!

In the program, we want to make sure patients don’t “fall off the wagon” again.  At our facility, https://www.pacificbayrecovery.com/ we strive to “Navigate successful care of life altering addiction.”

A healthy lifestyle starts from within; loving ourselves, healing the parts of our past, learning how and who to forgive, not continuously stuffing our backpacks, exercising self-care and learning to say NO (it is a complete sentence).  What we think and speak about, we bring about.  If we are facing chaos and disconnect, we tend to isolate and learn to numb our feelings.

Rehab MUST be our solution to a better life.  The key is to learn from compassionate experts (like the ones at Pacific Bay Recovery) who want to see you rehabilitate your mind and body.

Phrases are used, such as “Keep coming back and one day at a time” for motivation and to stay clean and sober.  Alcohol is cunning, baffling and powerful and drugs are 10x worse than that.  Our clinicians and social workers need to be reassured that all patients grow through our treatment program!

Selecting abstinence from drugs is grueling.  Changing your habits is difficult.  Owning your stuff and making shift occur, won’t be a walk in the park.

Places such as PBR are here to help, not hurt.  We offer several treatment services and powerful programs that will fit your recovery needs. While we do have an incredible success rate – we want you to feel safe and will answer any questions you have.  You can contact us for more details https://www.pacificbayrecovery.com/contact/.

We believe in your progress and will help you on the road to getting your life back.

Alcohol Dependence vs Abuse: When is drinking too much and when is drinking an addiction?

Maybe you had a crazy night out with friends, fueled by many alcoholic drinks. Maybe you attended a party and consumed so much alcohol you don’t remember anything. If something like this happens more than once, is it a problem? Does drinking like this lead to addiction? What is alcohol dependence versus alcohol abuse?

 

Searching for answers to these questions or reaching out for support should never be discouraged. Pacific Bay Recovery Drug Treatment Center can help, www.pacificbayrecovery.com. Thanks to significant advances, there are a variety of treatment methods, and Pacific Bay Recovery Treatment Center can create a plan to treat both the body and the mind.

 

How Much Can You Drink?

Many adults drink moderately, without complications. Recent research even touts modest health benefits from alcohol consumption. For women, low-risk drinking is defined as no more than three drinks a day, not to exceed more than seven drinks per week. For men, it is no more than four drinks a day, with no more than 14 drinks per week.

An estimated 16.6 million Americans have Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD

When is Drinking Dependence or Abuse?

An estimated 16.6 million Americans have Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD), which includes a range of mild, moderate and severe alcohol problems. AUD is identified by compulsive alcohol use, loss of control over drinking alcohol, and a negative emotional state when not drinking.

According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) There are several questions to ask to determine when to seek help:

 

  • Experienced drinking more or for extended periods of time than intended?
  • Tried to stop drinking or cut down, without success?
  • Experienced a strong need to drink?
  • Spent a great deal of time seeking relief from the aftereffects?
  • Has drinking, or becoming sick from drinking, interfered with taking care of home or family, or caused job or school problems?
  • Continued to drink even though it caused trouble with family or friends?
  • Skipped activities, or reduced participation in things important to you or that gave you pleasure, to drink?
  • Experienced unsafe situations more than once while or after drinking (such as driving, swimming, using machinery, walking in dangerous areas, or having unsafe sex)?
  • Increased drinking to achieve desired effects or found the usual number of drinks less effective than before?
  • Continued to drink even when depressed or anxious, or adding to another health problem or after experiencing a memory blackout?
  • When the effects of alcohol wear off, experienced withdrawal symptoms, such as trouble sleeping, shakiness, irritability, anxiety, depression, restlessness, nausea, or sweating, or even sensed things that were not there?

If you have any of these symptoms, this may be a cause for concern. The more symptoms you experience, the more urgent the need is to change.

A health professional at Pacific Bay Recovery Drug Treatment Center,  www.pacificbayrecovery.com, can provide a formal assessment of your symptoms. Ultimately, receiving treatment improves chances of success and provides a better path to enjoy life.

Sources:

https://www.niaaa.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/niaaa-recognizes-alcohol-awareness-month-2015

https://www.niaaa.nih.gov/alcohol-health/overview-alcohol-consumption/alcohol-use-disorders

Undergoing Medical Detoxification

The process of medical detoxification, or medical detox, is the first step in substance dependence and addiction which allows for an affected individual to adjust to a life without alcohol and/or drugs.

The process is performed slowly under the care and supervision of a trained and experienced healthcare professional. This is done to allow patients the opportunity to withdraw from their addictive substances without having to experience too severe withdrawal symptoms.

Withdrawal Symptoms

An important aspect to take note of is that every addiction is based on the individual and every withdrawal experience is different. Not everyone goes through the same withdrawal process and the severity of symptoms will depend on factors such as the type of drug used, the frequency of its use, how long the substance was used for, and if there is any underlying pathology.

The following are possible withdrawal symptoms that may be experienced depending on the substance that is abused:

  • Alcohol – fever, rapid heartbeat, and confusion.
  • Opioids/narcotics – excessive sweating, muscles aches, anxiety, abdominal discomfort, and agitation.
  • Methamphetamine – uncontrollable shaking, dry mouth, sweating, fatigue, and insomnia.
  • Cocaine – malaise, increased appetite, fatigue, and agitation.

Some other withdrawal symptoms that patients may experience can include:

  • Muscle tremors.
  • Depression.
  • Vomiting.
  • Diarrhea.

process is performed slowly under the care and supervision of a trained and experienced healthcare professional

Some patients may stop experiencing these issues after a few days or weeks, while others may end up struggling with symptoms that linger on for months. The period of time one may ultimately experience the withdrawal symptoms may last longer than anticipated without medical support and this can lead to relapsing back into bad habits.

Severe withdrawal symptoms that warrant definite medical intervention and support include:

  • Severe psychological distress.
  • Hallucinations.
  • Seizures or convulsions.

In the event of such issues, a medical detox administrator can ensure the safety of a patient and reduce the chances of a relapse.

How Does Medical Detox Work?

The following steps take place during a medical detoxification:

  • A trained medical practitioner will take charge over the entire withdrawal process starting with a patient’s history, current health status, and substance use history.
  • The patient will be examined and investigated further if required to rule out and manage any acute and/or chronic medical issues. Any fluid and electrolyte imbalances will also be managed here.
  • A custom detox process will be initiated for the patient to minimize the side effects of the withdrawal process as well as encourage a permanent state of recovery.
  • Depending on the substance that the patient is addicted to, tapering off the drug may be required in order to prevent any severe withdrawal effects from developing. This is especially important for substances such as alcohol, benzodiazepines, and methamphetamine.
  • Once the patients have their withdrawal symptoms under control, they will start to take part in other substance rehabilitation services such as psychotherapy and occupational therapy.

Without having to worry about physical and psychological symptoms of the withdrawal process, the patient can then start to focus on their mental health, long-term recovery plan to avoid relapses and to rebuild their lives and relationships with family members and friends.

Dual Diagnosis Treatment Centers California

Dual diagnosis is the medical term used to describe the presence of a mood condition such as depression or bipolar disorder together with a substance abuse problem in patients. An individual who is confirmed with dual diagnosis has two separate conditions and each one of these needs its own treatment plan.

Facts about Mood and Substance Abuse Disorders

  • They are both treatable conditions.
  • They are not characterized as character flaws or moral weaknesses.
  • The conditions can affect any person regardless of age, race, or financial background.
  • More than half of the individuals who are diagnosed with depression or bipolar mood disorders also use alcohol and/or drugs.

Mood Disorder Symptoms

Knowing the symptoms of a mood disorder can help one decide when to seek help for such a problem. Major depression can present with the following issues:

  • Excessive worrying.
  • Anxiety.
  • Feeling sad and being overly emotional.
  • Loss of energy or feeling constantly exhausted.
  • Excessive anger.
  • Unable to concentrate properly.
  • Lack of focus.
  • Not being able to enjoy activities that were once pleasurable.
  • Insomnia.
  • Lack of drive.
  • Not wanting to socialize with friends and family members anymore.
  • Having recurring thoughts of death or wanting to commit suicide.

Bipolar mood disorder is a mental health condition that is characterized by one’s mood switching between depression and mania. Manic symptoms include:

  • Having grandiose thoughts.
  • Increased irritability.
  • Increased mental and physical energy and activity.
  • Eliciting aggressive behavior.
  • Racing speech as well as having racing thoughts.
  • Being extremely optimistic and self-confident.
  • Being impulsive and making poor judgment calls.
  • Behaving recklessly by going on spending sprees, making major business decisions without consulting with others, sexual promiscuity, and driving dangerously.
  • Patients with severe cases of bipolar mood disorder may even become delusional and experience hallucinations.

Often times, individuals who struggle with mood disorders may use drugs and/or alcohol in order to mask the symptoms of the mental health conditions.

The Impact of Substance Use in Patients with Mental Health Conditions

At times, individuals who struggle with mood disorders may use drugs and/or alcohol in order to mask the symptoms of the mental health conditions.

A racing mind may be ‘calmed’ with an alcoholic drink or feelings of sadness can be alleviated with a stimulant drug. These substances may seem to help but, actually, make the situation worse for the patient. When the temporary effects of the substances wear off, the symptoms are often worse than before.

This causes the patient to use more of the substance which may eventually lead to dependence and addiction.

The Importance of Managing Mood Disorders and Substance Use

When neither of these issues is managed then one will make the other worse. If only one condition is addressed, then treatment will likely be less effective.

Therefore, it is very important for both illnesses to be managed effectively enough since this increases the chances for a complete and lasting recovery, which makes it easier for the affected individual to return to a full and productive life.

Pacific Bay Recovery Centers in California are equipped to manage patients who are suspected to have dual diagnosis. The rehabilitation facilities employ healthcare professionals who are trained and experienced in dealing with patients who are diagnosed with this condition.

Alcohol Abuse in the United States on the Rise

A JAMA Psychiatry article that was published in September 2017 has shown that Americans are consuming more alcohol than ever before. An estimated one out of every eight Americans which equates to around 30 million people, struggle with an alcohol disorder.

The study looked at the drinking patterns of around 40,000 individuals between 2002 and 2003 and compared it to that of people in 2012 and 2013. The findings were shocking, to say the least, especially in light of other substance abuse problems affecting the country such as the opioid epidemic.

Study Findings

The following findings were made in the study:

  • Alcohol use disorders rose by almost 50 percent. Nearly 9 percent of the population was affected in the initial research period compared to nearly 13 percent during the second part of the study.
  • Alcohol use disorders have almost doubled amongst the African American population.
  • There has been an increase of 84 percent of the female population struggling with alcohol use disorders.
  • It was also noted that alcohol use disorders increased more than double (106 percent) in individuals over the age of 65 and by nearly 82 percent in those between 45 and 65 years of age.

As can be seen, these statistics show the increase in alcohol use disorders. This is the complication of alcohol use and using alcohol in itself has spiked tremendously. High-risk drinking, a situation that is defined as consuming four or more drinks a day in women and five in men and including a day where this limit is exceeded at least once a week, has increased from nearly 10 percent in 2002/2003 to nearly 14 percent in 2012/2013.

What is Alcohol Use Disorder?

Alcohol use disorder is a condition that is associated with a pattern of alcohol use that involves:

  • Being preoccupied with alcohol.
  • Having problems controlling one’s frequency of drinking.
  • Continuing the use of alcohol even if it causes problems such as getting into trouble with the law.
  • Having to drink more alcohol in order to achieve the same effect.
  • Using alcohol to the point where the body becomes dependent on the substance and stopping it abruptly will lead to the user experiencing withdrawal symptoms.

Complications of alcohol use disorder may include:

  • Alcohol intoxication – the higher the alcohol level in the bloodstream, the more impaired one becomes and this can lead to issues such as mental changes and behavioral problems such as unstable moods, inappropriate behavior, slurred speech, poor coordination, and impaired judgment.
  • Alcohol withdrawal – when alcohol use is stopped or greatly reduced, the user can experience problems such as a rapid heartbeat, sweating, hand tremors, hallucinations, sleep-related problems, anxiety, agitation, and even seizures.

Pacific Bay Recovery

Pacific Bay Recovery is a top drug and alcohol rehabilitation center that specializes in helping patients with substance abuse issues such as alcohol use disorder.

The facility includes managing patients on an inpatient and/or outpatient basis depending on their needs and unique circumstances and offers the services of healthcare professionals such as psychologists, psychiatrists, and occupational therapists to name a few.

Substance Abuse and Inpatient Rehabilitation Services

Substance abuse is a difficult and challenging problem for affected individuals to manage and overcome. Factors such as the environment one lives in or is exposed to contribute to continued substance abuse. Increased stressors and being known as mental health conditions are also problems that can lead to alcohol and drug abuse and this may lead to further mental and physical complications.

Recognizing that one may have a problem with substance abuse can be quite difficult because most individuals who face this problem are either ignorant of the problem or are in denial of being affected. The following are symptoms that may help one identify if they have a problem with substance abuse:

  • Overcoming Substance AbuseThere’s a lack of control when using the abused substance.
  • Family members and friends express concern over the substance abuse.
  • Questioning whether the use of the substance is actually a problem or not.
  • Only the user knows the extent of their substance use.
  • The user is isolating themselves from friends and loved ones.
  • The performance of the user at school or at work is suffering.

Those individuals who continue with the behavior to abuse substances despite facing negative consequences such as poor health or getting into trouble with the law are considered to be addicted to the substance in question.

Inpatient Rehabilitation Services

 

Inpatient rehabilitation is a treatment program where addicted individuals spend between one and three months at a designated and licensed facility aimed at helping those with substance abuse problems.

The following services are offered at these inpatient facilities:

  • Medical detoxification, where patients are withdrawn from their respective abused substances in a safe environment and where there is access to a healthcare professional who helps them go through the withdrawal process.
  • Access to primary care doctors and psychiatrists to address any physical and mental health issues which may arise or already be present and need addressing. Many patients who abuse substances are either diagnosed with or have underlying mental health issues which, as mentioned, may trigger abusing the use of alcohol and drugs.
  • Psychologists are also available to discuss mental health conditions and any underlying and unresolved stressors at home or at work. Psychotherapy aims at helping the patient have a positive outlook on life and teaches them coping skills to better deal with stressors outside of the rehab facility.
  • Occupational therapists are involved with motivating affected individuals to help improve their drive and their mood by incorporating appropriate activities for patients to perform. Relaxation techniques are also taught by these allied healthcare workers.
  • Physical therapists may also be involved to help with any musculoskeletal conditions or just help reduce tension in affected individuals by working on tense areas of the body. Massage therapy, for example, is one of the clinically proven methods for helping with stress reduction.
  • The program is beneficial in monitoring the medication intake of patients which improves their compliance, such as where treatment is prescribed for certain individuals like methadone for heroin addicts.

The biggest benefit of an inpatient rehabilitation facility though is that the patient is taken out of their environment where exposure to the addictive substance is a problem. Here, they are able to focus on the important aspects such as overcoming their addiction with the right help in order to get back on track with their lives.

How To Identify Alcoholism

People across the western world are certainly fond of a drink. In fact, almost 27% of the American population over 18 binge drink every single month according to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Almost 70% of Americans had a drink in the past year and almost 56% in the past month. This will come as no surprise to many – and it’s no secret that lots of us need to cut down in one form or another. But the majority of Americans aren’t alcoholics. How can you differentiate between somebody that likes a drink and a problem drinker that potentially needs professional help? The simple steps below should help.

Identifying Alcoholism

Doctors across the world use a tool developed by the World Health Organisation called the AUDIT. It helps doctors identify people that might be at risk of alcohol abuse. Whilst it isn’t 100%, and scoring highly on it is not a diagnosis of alcoholism (you should always visit a licensed doctor for a diagnosis), it can give a good indicator of problem drinking and it’s a good tool to have in mind if you suspect you yourself or somebody you know may suffer from alcoholism.

The questionnaire includes 10 questions each with an answer scoring between 0 and 4. The maximum score is therefore 40, and any score over 20 indicates potential dependence. You can download the questionnaire for yourself at the following link but the questions include things such as:

  • How often during the last year have you found that you were not able to stop drinking once you had started?
  • How often during the last year have you failed to do what was normally expected from you because of your drinking?
  • How often during the last year have you needed an alcoholic drink in the morning to get yourself going after a heavy drinking session? (This is often known as an “eye opener” and it a big sign of alcoholism)
  • How often during the last year have you had a feeling of guilt or remorse after drinking?
  • Has a relative or friend, doctor or other health worker been concerned about your drinking or suggested that you cut down?

 

Getting Help For a Drinking Problem

 

If you or somebody you love scored highly on the World Health Organisations AUDIT score, it may indicate they have a dependence on alcohol. There are lots of treatment options available for those who do, and there are a number of specialist services available across the united states that can provide tailor-made plans to help an individual overcome their drinking problem. Their treatment options include:

  • Inpatient recovery facilities (where a patient will stay on site to break their habit)
  • Intensive outpatient treatment (where the patient come in for regular meetings to discuss and get help)
  • Pharmacotherapy – sometimes drugs may be prescribed to overcome withdrawal
  • CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy can be very helpful for people that have a dual diagnosis of alcoholism and a mental health condition).

Opioids Now a Bigger Killer Than Cancer: Here’s How We Fix That

Opioids Kill More than CancerA recent CNN report identified a devastating truth about the current opioid epidemic: opioids are now a bigger killer of Americans than cancer. In 2016 there were 42 000 overdoses of opioids (which include codeine, fentanyl, and heroin). Only 41 000 Americans die from breast cancer each year. The news that opioids are a bigger killer than breast cancer is no surprise for some, and much has been made about the national opioid crisis. In October the President Donald Trump announced from the White House that the opioid crisis was a “National Emergency” and needs to be dealt with immediately.

 

You might be forgiven for thinking that opioid addiction means heroin addiction. But increasingly that is not the case. Many people afflicted by this were actually prescribed these drugs for their chronic pain conditions by Doctors. When a clamp down on opioid prescriptions swept across America, many were left in the dark, addicted and alone. Talking to the Guardian, Cassie from Cleveland talked about the first time she used opioids for her back pain

 

“I felt like that’s how I wanted to feel for the rest of my life…I had energy, I was happy, nothing hurt, and it also took away those feelings of feeling, like, out of place. It just numbed me.”

 

Now 31, Cassie has overcome her addiction and says it was an uphill battle, but she is happy she can help people in a similar situation.

 

Prescription drug addiction affects thousands of Americans every year and isn’t just limited to opioids. The following drugs can be addictive and may require treatment:

 

  • Opiates – Also called narcotics and prescribed for severe or chronic pain.
  • Stimulants – Used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
  • Sedatives – Benzodiazepines used for sleep and to treat anxiety disorders.

 

The Solution: More Emphasis on Rehabilitation

 

It might seem like the landscape is dire, or that there is little hope for thousands of patients with prescription drug addiction from the way news outlets have been reporting the issue. But this isn’t true. With better support and a better understanding of the problem, we can make significant inroads into the problem.

 

A major issue has been the patients who were being prescribed drugs that have the “rug pulled out from under them” so to speak. These patients were taken off prescriptions and had no help to overcome their addiction. The CDC has made this a priority for Doctors, who are now being trained a lot more on how to wean their patients off the drugs.

 

There are also options for patients who do not have a prescription. Specialist rehabilitation services across the united states do fantastic work with both inpatient and outpatient services. They can take patients on an outpatient basis, where they prescribe a number of different drugs that can help wean addicts off the drugs. They also offer inpatient services, where the person stays at a residential facility with staff for a period of time. The clinician in charge of each patient will make a decision as to what treatment is appropriate for the patient.

 

With services like these, the opioid epidemic is sure to pass and patients will be free to live addiction-free lives.

 

Outpatient Rehab – Is it Right for Me?

For those whose lives still remain functional, outpatient rehab may be an option to consider. With this type of program, you see a counselor locally and work with therapy groups, attend AA/NA meetings, and complete assignments to help you with becoming drug- and/or alcohol-free. While you do have the freedom to live your life, random drug/alcohol tests are likely with this type of program, and you must be willing to submit to them, especially if it is court ordered outpatient care.

Addictive Medications and Minor AddictionsMinor Addictions

If you have trouble removing drugs and/or alcohol from your life, outpatient treatment may be right for you. This is especially the case if your life does not revolve solely around drinking and using drugs.  When you blow off friends, family, or general adult responsibilities to bar hop, consume an entire 12-pack of beer or bottle of alcohol, it’s time to get help. If you’d rather sit and completely lose your mind to get high instead of cleaning the house, grocery shopping, or spending time with your kids, it’s time to get help. This might be the right situation for you since you’re still able to function in daily life.

Remain in your Own Home

When attending outpatient rehab, you don’t have to deal with the stress of being in a strange place with conflicting personalities or those that are near death from their addictions. Being able to stay home with your family or in transitional housing while getting treatment has proven higher success rates. You have to take this program just as seriously as you would an inpatient center.

The transitional housing idea is to keep you in a dry household with others that are also in recovery. You still go to work, pay your bills, and have some freedom. There are curfews and some house rules to adhere to while seeing your counselor, participating in maintaining the home, and attending group sessions.

Live Normal Life without Drugs or Alcohol

In an outpatient program, you learn how to live life and make use of the extra time that you’d normally spend drinking or getting high. Some counselors suggest taking night college courses, painting, cooking, or taking up a hobby. It’s also an open invitation to get more involved with your spouse and children. Taking a more active role in your family is healing in itself and has plenty of benefits. You’re treating the addiction with your family, rather than being separated from them and feeling awkward returning home in a sober state.

Outpatient programs don’t work for everyone. This is the case with addicts where the only method of detection is by a blood sample or spinal tap. These expensive procedures have to be paid for by the patient and most cannot afford them. For those that recognize their problem and cannot afford inpatient care, this is a good place to start. It can be considered as temporary treatment while you look for financial aid or “scholarship” funds to get clean and live a healthy, substance-free lifestyle again.