Tag Archive: substance abuse recovery

  1. Success Factors in Teen Substance Abuse Recovery

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    Most parents will agree that nurturing a teen who is not plagued by drug or alcohol addiction is a challenge in and of itself. When addiction is added to the mix, raising a teen can be a trial that taxes even the most committed parent. Fortunately for those parents, counselors and therapists have identified several factors that will contribute to the success of a teen’s recovery from drug addiction or alcoholism. Applying and relying on these factors and techniques can help parents and teens through the inevitable struggles of addiction recovery.

    “Teen Addiction Sources”
    The first factor is to diagnose and understand the forces that led to a teen’s addiction problems in the first instance. Adolescents and teens wrestle with social and identity issues that would floor many adults, and those issues can lead to depression, anxiety, and other psychological issues. When left untreated, those issues can drive a teen to seek temporary solace from drugs or alcohol. A teen’s defenses and resistance to counseling and therapy will be strong, but parents need to remain equally strong to encourage their teenaged children to stay with individual therapy in order to get a comprehensive diagnosis of any underlying problems. This may require a parent to cast aside judgments and beliefs if, for example, a teen’s psychological struggles are tied to gender or identity issues or if a teen is using abused substances to erase memories of abuse or bullying.

    “Initial Rehab Program”
    Adults who are motivated to defeat their addictions will generally complete an initial rehab program in 28 days. Because of the unique issues they face and the differences in the developments of their brains and personalities, teens and adolescents may require lengthier programs or more than one stay in a treatment program during the initial portions of their recoveries. Many adolescent-specific addiction programs offer 60- and 90-day treatments that have been shown to be more effective at contributing to the success of a teen’s long-term recovery. These programs are also geared toward beginning the treatment of a teen addict’s underlying psychological issues.

    “Aftercare Treatment”
    Perhaps the most significant factor that will contribute to a teen’s recovery from substance abuse is the aftercare treatment that he or she receives after completing rehab. Aftercare often involves the participation of a teen’s entire family to provide the support structure and monitoring needed to repel the temptations that a teen will feel to relapse into drug and alcohol use. Family members will have access to their own support groups to share ideas and encouragement, while a recovering teen participates in separate group and individual therapy, including 12-step programs that are geared toward teens. A well-structured aftercare program will also help a recovering teen to develop new interests and outlets to relieve the inevitable boredom that is experienced in recovery.

    “Outside Factors”
    The ultimate success of a teen’s recovery from drug addiction or alcoholism may depend on other factors that may not be controlled, including his or her race, ethnic, and social background, and financial resources to pay for different programs. Social services and insurance programs are becoming increasingly cognizant of the need to meld these factors with teen addiction recovery programs. Parents who are committed to helping their teens to achieve lifelong sobriety will want to do extensive research to uncover the best rehab programs and aftercare therapy that will assure the success of their teen’s recovery.

    Sustain Recovery Services in southern California has multiple resources to help teens and their parents with individualized programs that will increase their chances of a successful recovery from drug addiction and alcoholism. Please see our website or call us at 949-407-9052 for more information about our services or to arrange a confidential consultation with one of our counselors.

  2. Addiction and Homelessness: How to Help a Loved One at His Lowest

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    addiction and homelessnessBy some estimates, between one fourth and one third of all homeless persons suffer from drug or alcohol problems. Drugs may be the cause of or the result of homelessness, but the connection between homelessness and substance abuse is beyond question. If someone close to you has suffered from drug addiction and has taken to the streets, that person’s long-term prognosis will not be good, but you will have options to help that person and to recover him from a life of harm and decay.

    Helping a Homeless Loved One

    Your initial reaction when you discover that someone you love has become homeless will likely be akin to panicking. You will feel a need to head out into whatever streets have claimed your loved one to bring him or her back to your abode. Panic reactions are normal, but they may not be the best option. Your ability to help a person that you care about will be enhanced if you first calm yourself down and force yourself to move deliberately and with proper planning and strategy. Rescuing your loved one with no consideration of how to address his or her addiction problems is, at best, a temporary solution. Before long, if untreated, your loved one’s addictions will push him or her back to the street.

    When you have calmed yourself and recouped your perspective, do some research into homeless shelters and addiction recovery programs that are designed to help homeless persons. A day or two of research will show you the available options, and you can choose the best option for the person you are trying to help. If you then re-connect with that person, you can take him or her directly to the shelter or center, where treatment for both the homeless problem and the drug addiction can begin.

    Addiction and Homelessness

    Many addicts who have lapsed into homelessness will sense that they have hit “rock bottom”, and that sensation may lead to a feeling of desperation that can drive a homeless person to do whatever is necessary to survive. Because of this, a homeless person might need to address legal problems in addition to his or her drug addiction. Be prepared to retain an attorney who can be your loved one’s advocate if legal problems do threaten to interfere with his or her recovery.

    Even under the best circumstances, recovering from drug addiction can be a years-long process that requires commitment from both the addict and from his support community. When an addict has fallen into homelessness, the challenges will inevitably be greater. A homeless addict will need to restart his finances, find a place to live after he is out of any rehab facilities, and start a program of counseling to address his addiction and any psychological issues that can threaten his stability. You will best be able to help him by supporting and encouraging him in these endeavors and by making sure that he is adhering to whatever plans or structures you helped him to put in place. Ultimately, the homeless drug addict will need to resolve to help himself. Your role is to keep your loved one on a path that helps him do that.   

     

    Please call the Sustain Recovery Services at (949) 407-9052 for more information on how you can help a loved one in your life who has become homeless, and for assistance in creating a recovery program that is specific to his or her situation.

I first met Sayeh in November of 2013 just after my 15 year old daughter had been admitted to a residential treatment program. As part of the program I was required to attend 2-3 AlAnon meetings a week. Sayeh attended the same AlAnon meetings as well as Alumni events as I. It soon became apparent to me that Sayeh had a heart for recovery, program, and God. When I was encouraged to get a sponsor I didn’t hesitate. Dependable, respectful, kind and generous of spirit, she exudes an inner peace that I hope to achieve with her loving guidance, as I work my own program. She is patient, & full of wisdom that she is always happy to share with her sponsees and fellow parents. I am so grateful our journeys brought us together.

Megan
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