The Warning Signs of Alcoholism

The Warning Signs of Alcoholism

Alcohol is a killer that lives right out in the open. One we welcome into our homes, sporting events, celebrations, and more.

It’s among the most, if not the most widely accepted substance we have in our society and it’s notoriously deadly; the third-leading cause of preventable death in the United States as the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) points out.

The jarring stats don’t end there though. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that over 24,000 people died from alcoholic liver disease in 2019 and the number of alcohol-induced deaths (excluding accidents and homicides) was over 39,000.

The NIAAA adds that as recently as 2019, 14.5 million people aged 12 and older had an alcohol use disorder (AUD).

Alcohol abuse is very much a real problem in the country and knowing the warning signs of alcoholism is imperative to saving the life of a loved one.

Alcoholism Defined

Prior to getting into the signs and symptoms, it’s instructive to define what alcoholism is in the first place.

For starters, the official name for alcoholism is alcohol use disorder or AUD and the NIAAA defines it as such:

“Alcohol use disorder (AUD) is a medical condition characterized by an impaired ability to stop or control alcohol use despite adverse social, occupational, or health consequences. It encompasses the conditions that some people refer to as alcohol abuse, alcohol dependence, alcohol addiction, and the colloquial term, alcoholism. Considered a brain disorder, AUD can be mild, moderate, or severe”.

That there at the end is a critical point to understand, that alcoholism is a brain disorder in the same way drug addiction is. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) takes it a step further and sheds some light on the disorder concept, noting, “it is considered a brain disorder because it involves functional changes to brain circuits involved in reward, stress, and self-control”.

Warning Signs of Alcoholism to Look Out For

As mentioned, alcoholism exists on a spectrum – mild to moderate to severe – and where that person you care about lands is based on how many of the following criteria they meet:

  • Consuming more alcohol than anticipated or for longer than expected
  • Wanting to quit or at least cut but weren’t able to
  • Spending an inordinate amount of time drinking or being hungover
  • Cravings for a drink so bad that you can’t think of anything else
  • Drinking, being sick from drinking, or recovering from it gets in the way of your responsibilities to family, friends, school, work, etc.
  • Carrying on drinking despite problems it creates with family and friends
  • Skipping or going less often to activities you once enjoyed in order to drink instead
  • Finding yourself in dangerous scenarios while drinking like getting behind the wheel, being in unsafe areas, unprotected sex, etc.
  • Drinking despite the fact that it makes you depressed or adds to other health problems
  • Building a tolerance to alcohol so you need to drink more to get the same effects
  • Experiencing withdrawal symptoms – trouble sleeping, nausea, sweating, seizure, etc. – when the drinks wear off

Mild AUD would be meeting 2-3 of those criteria.

Moderate AUD would be 4-5.

Anything over 6 is considered severe AUD.

How to Get Someone Help With Their Alcohol Addiction

Quitting alcohol and beating addiction is a tough battle to face on your own and your loved one doesn’t have to go that route.

Getting help for someone with an addiction to alcohol is possible and readily available. The key to increasing the odds of success is making sure that person – your brother, mother, father, sister, uncle, friend, etc. – are truly aware that they have a problem and accept the help and dedicated treatment they need to overcome it.

An intervention is something that can create that awareness and be the inciting incident they need to change their lives for good.

If you want to learn more, need advice or information, reach out to us today at Footprints of Serenity.

Support Groups for Family Members of Drug Addicts and Alcoholics Explained

Support Groups for Family Members of Drug Addicts and Alcoholics Explained

Drug addiction and alcoholism don’t solely affect the user. Substance abuse is very much a trauma that spreads itself across the entire family.

Of course, the user is the one who needs help the most of all in righting their ship so to speak, but family members don’t come out unscathed in this.

Growing up or even just existing within the confines of a dysfunctional family can take a massive psychological toll.

That’s why it’s important to look into support groups for family members of drug addicts and those dealing with alcohol use disorder. As much as your loved one needs support in getting to the other side of addiction, you need assistance too because your “normal” has also been shattered.

What Are Support Groups for Family Members of Addicts?

Family members of addicts have a uniquely difficult and different experience with addiction, not necessarily as harrowing as the user, but distressing nonetheless. The mental price paid in the form of constant worry, anxiety and stress is high and needs to be addressed. 

Without taking time to work through your issues, you can find yourself overwhelmed with all you’ve been dealing with. Support groups offer an environment where people who are going through or have gone through similar situations with addiction in their families can come to find solidarity and a place to talk. A place to build positive and healthy relationships.

Different Types of Support Groups for Families of Addicts and Alcoholics Available

Fortunately, this need for support has been recognized and several groups have been created to help. 

Among them are:

Al-Anon

Started in 1952 by the wife of the founder of Alcoholics Anonymous, Al-Anon describes itself as, “a mutual support program for people whose lives have been affected by someone else’s drinking. By sharing common experiences and applying the Al-Anon principles, families and friends of alcoholics can bring positive changes to their individual situations”.

Crucially, they add this can happen “whether or not the alcoholic admits the existence of a drinking problem or seeks help”.

This really drives home the idea that this is a support group for family and that you can get better even if the addict can’t.

Alateen

Also related to Alcoholics Anonymous, Alateen was founded in 1957 by Al-Anon and focuses on the children of those struggling with alcoholism.

As they note, Alateen is “a fellowship of young people (mostly teenagers) whose lives have been affected by someone else’s drinking whether they are in your life drinking or not”.

The core goal is for it to be a place where young people can “share experiences, strength, and hope with each other to find effective ways to cope with problems” as well as “discuss difficulties and encourage one another”.

Adult Children of Alcoholics

Founded in 1973, Adult Children of Alcoholics describes themselves as a support group “focused on understanding the specific behavior and attitude patterns we developed while growing up in an alcoholic or other dysfunctional environment.  These patterns continue to affect us today.

By attending regular meetings we come to a better understanding of our past so we can more effectively restructure our lives today.  We begin to see more clearly what is positive and healthy in ourselves”.

Similar to Al-Anon and Alateen, the idea of attending Adult Children of Alcoholics meetings is to be among those who truly get it. People who’ve been in exactly the same place you were growing up and who need help getting past it too.

Why You Should Go to Support Groups for Family Members of Drug Addicts and Alcoholics 

The important thing to takeaway here is that support is critical for both the addict and you, the family. You have your own trauma to work through and it shouldn’t be ignored just because you aren’t the one who’s addicted.

If you’re looking for support, reach out to us Footprints of Serenity and we can help you find a place that works for you.

What to Do After Drug Treatment Is Complete

What to do after drug treatment is complete

You’ve just finished rehab and the whole world is laid out before you.

What do you do?

Are you truly ready?

Are you overwhelmed? Scared? Excited?

All of the above?

Completing your program is a monumental moment. Truly a grand achievement. What you do after drug treatment though is what makes the difference in the long run.

Truth is, to some degree you will feel prepared to take on the world because part of your treatment program is dedicated to life after rehab. You may be nervous, which is normal, but you won’t be going into the unknown without thorough preparation.

Moreover, there are plenty of positive and affirmative steps you can take to ensure you stay the course.

Steps to Take to Maintain Addiction Recovery After Drug Treatment Is Complete

Recovery, as you well know by now, is a lifelong endeavor. Just because your inpatient treatment or outpatient care is finished, it doesn’t mean you can stop paying attention or ease up on actively working to maintain your sobriety.

Here are a handful of steps that make the journey easier:

Join a Support Group

Whether it’s a 12 step program like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or Narcotics Anonymous (NA) or something without the religious angle like SMART Recovery, a support group can be a gamechanger and a lifesaver.

Being surrounded by people who genuinely understand you and have been in your shoes makes a big difference. You all are working through the same things together and there’s power and inspiration to be found in that.

Not to mention the built-in accountability that comes with connecting with those in your support group.

Create a Group of Sober Friends

Speaking of connection, it’s important to develop a sober group of friends.

It can be folks you meet in your support group or through new activities you’ve taken up, it doesn’t matter. What matters is that the people you choose to spend time with don’t default to drugs or alcohol in their free time.

Identify Your Triggers and Manage Stressors

In treatment, you’re in something of a stress-free bubble and you’re active in pushing back against triggers. Back in your real life, you need to stay vigilant – actually, be even more vigilant – and identify people, places, and things that could trigger you to use them.

Once you’ve identified them you can work on managing those stressors and developing a plan of action to cope.

Recognize Warnings of a Relapse

This is more or less a continuation of the previous step, once you know what can trigger you or stress you out, you can use it to recognize the signs of a potential relapse. The more aware you are of these things, the more you can quickly react to the warnings of relapse and remove yourself from the situation.

Develop New Habits and Find Activities That You Find Meaningful 

To maintain sobriety, you ultimately need to find meaningful ways to spend your time. The more meaning you can derive from whatever you fill your day with – the people, the events, the places, the hobbies, everything – the better.

Keep a Schedule

They say idle hands are the devil’s playthings, which is to say that if you have nothing to do, you’re more likely to get yourself into trouble, especially if you’re recovering from addiction.

Keeping a schedule and making it a full one is an easy thing you can do to keep your mind and body occupied and away from thoughts of substance use.

Celebrate Your Sobriety Achievements 

Regularly acknowledge how far you’ve come!

Celebrating wins is so psychologically gratifying and it gives you a chance to reflect on how far you’ve come. Better yet, celebrate in your support group and be an example for others to follow because helping others truly does help you too.

If you’re unsure about how to handle life after rehab or would like to learn even more steps you can take, reach out to us at Footprints of Serenity.

Knowing When It’s Time to Find a Drug Rehab for Young Adults

Knowing When It’s Time to Find a Drug Rehab for young adults

Our teenage years are formative in so many ways; they help shape us, serving to define our interests more finely and determine our likes & dislikes. The young adult years are when we lay the groundwork for what’s to come.

It’s an invigorating and exploratory time in any person’s life.

It’s also a time of experimentation and increasing independence which is no doubt a cause for concern for all parents around the world.

This is a period in life when your son or daughter will encounter and perhaps even try drugs and/or alcohol for the first time and the statistics from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) bear that out:

  • By 12th grade, nearly half of teens, 46.6%, will have tried illicit drugs
  • 43.7% will have tried marijuana by 12th grade
  • Almost 2/3rds, 61.5%, reported trying alcohol by their senior year

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that 1/10th of all alcohol consumed in the United States is by people aged 12 to 20 years old. That’s 10%.

Whether it’s curiosity, peer pressure, coping with stress or another reason, experimentation doesn’t necessarily mean addiction or dependency. There are so many tough parts of parenting and knowing when to make that call about substances is among the hardest.

Fortunately, there are signs you can look for to know when things have gotten out of hand.

Signs Your Teen Is Addicted to Drugs or Alcohol

Addiction isn’t something that happens overnight, it may seem that way but in actuality, it builds over time presenting many symptoms along the way which can be broken down into physical and behavioral components.

Physical Signs of Addiction 

  • Bloodshot eyes or dilated pupils
  • Itching
  • Sniffling
  • Injection marks
  • Unexplained injuries
  • Changes in skin color, pallor
  • Sudden weight loss or gain
  • Atypical or unusual body odors
  • Issues with sleeping, getting either too much or too little
  • Poor hygiene
  • Looking generally unkempt and increasingly disregarding physical appearance

 

Behavioral Signs of Addiction 

  • Irritability and mood swings
  • Depression
  • Lethargy and lack of motivation
  • Withdrawing from family and friends
  • Paranoia
  • Lying
  • Borrowing money
  • Change in habits and more secretive about what they’re doing
  • Loss of interest in activities they previously enjoyed
  • Engaging in more dangerous, risky and possibly even criminal activity
  • Missing curfew
  • Neglecting responsibilities at school or work

If you’re noticing more and more of these signs and symptoms, it very well could be time for you to consider drug rehab for young adults. There’s no harm in learning more about how rehab can help and seeking information from experts on the next steps to take.

How a Drug Rehab for Young Adults Can Help Your Teen Find Recovery

Once you’ve identified a potential issue with drugs or alcohol, it’s time to seek solutions and among the best options available to you and your teen is rehab.

Why?

Because that’s the sole purpose of it; it’s dedicated and specialized treatment for addiction under the care and guidance of trained and licensed professionals.

Your inclination as a parent might be to scold your kid, get angry and confrontational about their drug or alcohol use. That’s just not helpful though because addiction is a disorder of the mind and that type of reaction could have the opposite effect and further cement their behavior.

It’s worth defining addiction here to understand another reason how rehab, in particular, can be incredibly helpful. According to NIDA, addiction is “a chronic, relapsing disorder characterized by compulsive drug seeking and use despite adverse consequences. It is considered a brain disorder, because it involves functional changes to brain circuits involved in reward, stress, and self-control”.

There’s more to undoing that than just a stern talking-to.

Rehab allows your teen to work through the issues that led them to substances in the first place and equips them with new tools and coping mechanisms to be able to overcome those same situations in the future, but in a healthy way.

If you’re worried about your child, give us a call at Footprints of Serenity and we can help you find the treatment option that’s right for them. 

What Are the Alternatives to 12 Step Programs in Addiction Recovery?

What are the alternatives to 12 step programs in addiction recovery?

12 step programs and addiction recovery seem like they go hand in hand, to the point that you almost might think it’s required to be a part of one in order to successfully stay sober.

Developed and started by Alcoholics Anonymous well over half a century ago, the twelve steps have truly been revelatory for many and have indeed helped countless men and women, millions over the years, stick with their recovery.

That said, it’s not ideal for everyone and that’s fair enough. Not everyone likes the same flavor of ice cream, after all. Certain aspects might not click for each person in recovery, the religious and spiritual parts of it, for example, may turn people off. Another big factor that may strike people as negative, or that they object to, is that 12 step programs require an admittance that you’re powerless over addiction (it’s the first of the steps).

Again, that’s not to say AA isn’t a fine program for some. 

Fortunately, there are alternatives to 12 step programs for those that are seeking them.

SMART Recovery

Whereas the 12 steps have a higher power at the core, SMART Recovery is rooted in science. An acronym, SMART stands for “Self-Management And Recovery Training” and, like AA or NA, is a global community of support groups.

Rather than 12 steps, SMART operates on a 4-point program:

  1. Building and Maintaining Motivation
  2. Coping with Urges
  3. Managing Thoughts, Feelings, and Behaviors
  4. Living a Balanced Life

They add, “our science-based approach emphasizes self-empowerment and self-reliance. There’s no lifetime commitment; you decide when the time is right to move on. You choose how to personalize your own plan for successful change”.

Refuge Recovery

While Refuge Recovery is inspired and informed by Buddhist ideas, it’s a non-theistic program. Moreover, you don’t have to be well versed in Buddhism, or know it at all, to get the benefits of what they offer.

Refuge Recovery is rooted in the idea that “Buddhists commit to the path of awakening by taking refuge in three things: awakening (Buddha), truth (Dharma), and community (Sangha)”.

Additionally, it incorporates the Buddhist concepts of the Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path.

Four Noble Truths

  1. Addiction creates suffering
  2. The cause of addiction is repetitive craving
  3. Recovery is possible
  4. The path to recovery is available

Eightfold Path

  1. Understanding
  2. Intentions
  3. Speech/community
  4. Actions
  5. Livelihood/service
  6. Effort
  7. Mindfulness
  8. Concentration

The recovery program includes meetings, meditation, mentorship, and retreats.

Non 12 Step Rehabs

Some rehabs are fully committed to the 12 step cause, and that’s OK. If the ideology and principles of the 12 step program don’t gel with thought, you don’t have to go to a rehab where that’s the cornerstone, quite frankly.

The point of rehab is to do what works best for you.

If you’re uncomfortable with any part of it, it stands to reason that you’ll be reluctant to commit wholeheartedly because of that inherent skepticism. Without total commitment, whatever program you choose won’t be nearly as effective. It can’t be.

Non 12 step rehabs, like their 12 step counterparts, start with detox and from there move into evidence-based approaches to treatment that are personalized to your particular needs.

These mainly focus on various types of psychotherapy or talk therapy, like cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) with the aim being to get to the root cause of why you started using substances in the first place. The emphasis is on empowering you to change your way of thinking and behavior rather than the notion that overcoming addiction is beyond your reach or control.

If you’re on the fence about 12 steps or non 12 step options, give us a call at Footprints of Serenity and we can talk you through them both in more depth.

Find a Drug Addiction Intervention Specialist in Los Angeles Today

How to find a Intervention Specialist in Los Angeles near me

Addiction is stubborn.

That’s sort of an obvious statement but it’s true nonetheless and a core reason why many who need treatment, don’t seek it.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) points out;

  • In 2015, an estimated 2.3 million people aged 12 or older who needed substance use treatment received treatment at a specialty facility in the past year. This number represents 10.8 percent of the 21.7 million people who needed substance use treatment in the past year.
  • Among the estimated 19.3 million people aged 12 or older who were classified as needing but not receiving substance use treatment at a specialty facility, about 18.4 million or 95.4 percent did not think that they needed treatment in the past year for their substance use.

In other words, only around 11% of people sought rehab. As you see, addiction is stubborn.

What can be done then to help get your loved one the treatment they so clearly need?

An intervention.

What Is a Drug Addiction Intervention?

An intervention is a deliberate process by which change is introduced into an individual’s thoughts, feelings and behaviors.

It involves several respected and loved people close to the addict gathering to confront a person, in a non-threatening and non-aggressive way, to lay bare the depths of suffering that their addiction is causing themselves and their friends and family.

The idea is to hold a mirror to drug use and show them the effects. Similar to the  TV show “Intervention”, you won’t want to let your loved one know about the intervention beforehand. If they do know about it, they most likely won’t want to attend or will go into it with their guard up.

The goal is to get them to commit to receiving help in the form of rehab and to that end, another critical element is the consequences and ultimatums that must be followed through on should your loved one refuse treatment.

How an Intervention Specialist in Los Angeles Will Help Your Loved One Get Sober

An intervention isn’t just having a quick chat, suggesting rehab, having your loved ones accept, and dropping them off.

As you most likely know very well by this point, it’s hard to convince someone who doesn’t think they have a problem to fix it. There can be rampant denialism that’s wrapped up in addiction and often discussions about drug use become contentious, accusatory, and ultimately counterproductive. Serving only to further cement the use of drugs or alcohol.

Therefore, attempting an intervention without professional guidance is generally asking for trouble.

A trained interventionist understands this and works with you and the rest of those who will be participating in the intervention to develop a plan of action. In fact, they’ll help you form the most effective and convincing “team” with which to confront your loved one.

Once in preparation, you may find you don’t know exactly what to say, an experienced interventionist can assist you in developing the messaging that will truly connect and hit home, as well as help you create meaningful consequences if they refuse care.

Additionally, there’s the important task of making arrangements with a treatment center. An interventionist can ensure you cover all the bases in finding one that truly is a good fit for your family member or friend. 

Most importantly, they’ll be there on the day of the intervention to guide and lead it. It can be a tense, overwhelming and fraught meeting and for those who are unprepared for the torrent of emotions or haven’t been through it before – which is almost everyone – it can be hard to get through. 

Let Footprints of Serenity Guide You Through the Intervention Process

Working with someone who’s been there many times before, an intervention specialist in Los Angeles, means you can rely on their steady guidance to get everyone through it and with maximum impact.

If you think your loved one may be at the breaking point and that an intervention could be effective, reach out to us at Footprints of Serenity to learn more.

 

Tips on How To Help an Addict Get Sober

how to help friend get sober

Regrettably, no magic, catchall solution makes helping an addict a breeze.

Just as recovery is a process, getting to recovery is also a process. One that can be marred by frustration, confusion, false hope and more. There’s a certain stick-to-itiveness, power of will and dogged determination that comes with the territory of helping an addict get sober.

How to support and assist an addict in getting sober encompasses a lot.

Tips on How To Help an Addict Get Sober

Don’t Ignore the Signs of Addiction

It’s tempting to think that what you’re seeing isn’t an addiction and is just some occasional drug or alcohol abuse. To excuse the behavior because you don’t want to believe that your loved one could possibly be an addict.

Don’t do that. Learn the signs of addiction and when you see them take note of them. Use that knowledge to help formulate a plan of action.

Be Realistic

Speaking of that frustration, confusion, false hope and going even further to exasperation, irritation, annoyance and more…you’ll experience all of it and more most likely. While you might be able to plainly see the problem their addiction is causing, it’s a different story to get them to see it.

Therefore, you need to prepare for that by being realistic across the board.

Don’t expect that your suggestion about rehab is going to be well-received initially. Know that they might break promises to you in the process. Try to be ready to not react in anger. Addiction is a disorder, if you can get through to them eventually, it’ll be worth the hardship for them and you.

All in all, don’t expect instantaneous and abrupt change.

Support Them 

Just like being realistic with the expectations is important, so is being supportive and communicating positively.

Simply being there and being there supportively can be hugely beneficial. Addiction is already an alienating and lonely experience, try to be supportive through it if possible.

But Don’t Enable Them

There’s a natural breaking point in how far you can extend support. When your support turns into enabling their addiction, that’s a step too far. Whether it’s withholding financial support or paying their expenses so they’re able to continue using, there’s a delicate balance to how far your support can reasonably go and it will be tough to maintain.

Nonetheless, it’s important to be conscious of this because if you end up enabling them, it will only prolong their addiction.

Communicate with Love, Not Guilt, Anger or Shame

No one likes to be attacked, shamed or guilted.

Without question, it’s difficult to remain loving in times like these but it’s important to understand that your loved one might already be dealing with feelings of guilt and shame associated with their addiction. Adding to that with more guilt and shame could push them further away.

Speak with love and try to make them feel that they’re deserving of it and the treatment to get themselves back on track.

Establish Trust 

Creating and maintaining some through-line of trust is tricky but if you can nurse it and build on the notion that you care and are trying to help, it can make it easier for them to accept that assistance down the road. 

Find Treatment Options and Remove Barriers to Them

Educate yourself throughout this whole process on what treatment options are available for whatever addiction your loved one is going through. The last thing you want to have happen is that they’re ready to commit to rehab…but you’re not sure exactly where to send them or how to go about finding out.

Let Footprints of Serenity Help Your Loved One Get Sober Today

If someone you love is battling with an addiction, there is hope to free them from it. There are resources available. Perhaps they’ve reached the point where an intervention is necessary to compel them to accept treatment, reach out to us at Footprints of Serenity and let’s discuss your circumstances further and figure out what the best next steps to take are.

How to Find A Rehab & Other Addiction Resources

how to find a rehab

As the taboo of addiction has slowly started to wither away and society has come to accept that addiction to drugs or alcohol is a mental illness, a beautiful thing has happened in tandem. A massive groundswell of options to get treatment for that illness, known as a substance use disorder, have popped up.

That’s all well and good, fantastic in fact, but with so many addiction resources available and so many more becoming available, how do you find the right one for you?

It’s honestly something you may not have put a lot of thought into. And that’s fair enough. If you’re worried about a loved one and their substance abuse, it’s hard to think too far outside of each moment and get into a deep planning phase for treatment.

With so many options out there, you need a way to sift through the noise and find something truly viable.

Tips for Finding a Rehab

There are a lot of things to look for when searching for a rehab facility that ticks all the boxes for you or a loved one, but you can start with these.

Get a Medical Assessment and/or Talk to a Treatment Specialist

Residential inpatient treatment is a very thorough form of rehab but it’s not necessarily what everyone needs. To figure out what type of treatment is best suited for your particular addiction, talking to a treatment specialist can be a gamechanger. They can point you in the right direction and help match you with a facility that is in line with your goals. Additionally, a medical evaluation can help you determine the severity of your addiction and paint a clearer picture of which options could benefit you the most. 

Research the Programs

Even if you’re working with a specialist who can help you navigate these waters, you need to be asking your own questions and doing research as well. Look into the programs that are offered at a given center. Many rehabs, for example, are specialized in a certain type of addiction. Others are gender-specific. Some may incorporate medications that might give you pause while others might be more centered on alternative therapies.

There’s a lot to learn and all of it is important in landing in a good spot.

Proven Record of Success, Accreditation & Quality, Licensed Personnel

Not every place that has been around for decades is incredible but, logically speaking, if a treatment center has been around for a long time, they’re probably doing something right. In other words, it should raise some red flags if a place just opened shop last week.

Any reputable rehab will have their history, certifications and accreditation on their website as well as their staff’s qualifications and backgrounds.

 

Don’t Be Blinded by Luxury

Luxury is a big selling point for treatment centers and being comfortable in your surroundings certainly allows you to focus all your attention squarely on recovery, however, luxury doesn’t automatically equal quality treatment.

First and foremost, make sure you choose a rehab center because of the care you or a loved one is getting.

Useful Addiction Resources

On top of rehab, there are other valuable resources to consider:

Intervention Services

Unfortunately, it’s not always the case that someone just gets up and decides to go to rehab one day without issue. Often someone suffering from addiction can’t see the damage they’re doing to themselves or their friends and families. In those cases, an intervention might be the best way to turn a mirror on their behavior and get them to finally accept help.

12 Step Groups

Recovery from a substance abuse disorder is a lifelong journey and part of the process for many people is to participate in support groups that incorporate the 12-step program. The most commonly known of these groups are Alcoholics Anonymous, which developed the 12-step program, and Narcotics Anonymous. Another option, not related to the 12-steps, is SMART Recovery.

Individual Counseling

Both individual and group counseling are major components of most rehabs but it’s not something you have to stop once you complete treatment. There are distinct benefits to carrying on with counseling as long as you feel you need it.

Reach Out to Footprints of Serenity Today

At Footprints of Serenity, we know it’s not the easiest thing to find the perfect rehab but we have over 20 years of experience helping people find recovery and intervention services. If you’re having difficulty, reach out to us and let’s find the care you’re looking for, together.

Detox in Los Angeles: How to Find the Right One

los angeles drug detox

Going through the process of detox isn’t always easy, especially when trying to go through this process alone.  There are many different types of resources, support, and professionals that may be able to help each client succeed while going through this process. The professionals may help with things such as withdrawal symptoms, substance cravings, severity, and much more. Here at Footprints of Serenity, we are dedicated to helping those in need of finding detoxification from drugs and alcohol. It is never recommended that someone tries to detox alone. 

 

What Is a Detox Treatment Center in Los Angeles?

A detox treatment center in Los Angeles is a facility where someone who is going through withdrawal symptoms from addiction can go to get help and find comfort within this detoxing process. These facilities provide professionals that are capable of medically supervising each client. These clients may be going through withdrawal symptoms that may or may not be life-threatening, so having medical professionals to help guide them through this process is crucial. The professionals within these facilities can also provide medication to reduce the discomfort of withdrawal symptoms, but the medication truly depends on the severity of the addiction, the substance that was abused, etc. When looking at different detox facilities that meet your needs, make sure you look into the credentials of this facility and what they truly have to offer.

 

Why You Shouldn’t Detox off Drugs and Alcohol Alone

Detoxing off of a dangerous substance should never be done alone. That being said, there are many different reasons why an individual should not detox off drugs and alcohol alone, below we have provided a few of them. These reasons include:

  • Withdrawal symptoms – When a client is going through a detox they may experience withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms can be very mild and also very severe. Some of these symptoms include: nausea, aches, fever, and fatigue. Some psychological symptoms include insomnia, irritability, anger, anxiety, depression, etc.
  • No support – Going through a detox within a treatment facility, this facility can help provide support that may or may not be in each of the clients lives. Having support during this difficult process, will help our clients stay accountable and also help them continue this process without relapsing. 
  • What’s the next step? – The detox process is the first start of the recovery process. While going through this detox process, it is a great way to build relationships with professionals. These addiction and medical professionals can help their clients find the best treatment option for their individualized needs.This will put each person on the right track to succeeding in recovery and sobriety, and will also help to prevent future relapse.

 

These are just a few of the many different reasons why going through the detox process alone is dangerous and going through the detox process in a professional detox facility is important. Not only do these facilities provide professionals to help with these withdrawal symptoms, but they also provide wisdom in guidance with the next steps after the detox has occurred.

 

How Footprints of Serenity Can Help You Find a Detox in Los Angeles

Here at the Footprints of Serenity, we want to help you find the perfect detox that best suits you and your individualized needs. We provide the support and the resources for each of our clients, in hopes to ease the stresses of finding a detox and also ease the withdrawal symptoms that our clients may experience. Let us help you find the best treatment plan and detox for you. Reach out to us today to get started on your journey to recovery! 

How To Pack For Rehab

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration‘s National Survey on Drug Use and Health reports that of over 22.5 million people who suffer from addiction, less than 20 percent get treatment.

So while going to rehab for addiction treatment can be scary, it’s important to keep your eye on your long-term goal — reaching sobriety and learning to live without drug abuse. This is a new beginning, and you’re not allowing yourself to just become another statistic. In order to get the most out of your experience, it’s important to know what to expect and pack appropriately.

Now, all treatment programs have their own specific set of rules and lists of items you are permitted to bring, so it is important to reach out to yours before going. That said, this is a general packing guide you can follow:

Bring the Essentials

While many rehab facilities are indeed luxurious and designed to help you relax, it’s important to remember that you are not at a spa retreat. You’re there to focus on detox and addiction recovery, and any personal items that do not help facilitate that can get in the way. Because of this, most treatment centers prohibit many personal items that are not deemed essential to your wellbeing or everyday care.

Essential items are general categorized as the following:

  • Toiletries – These include essential bathroom and personal care products like  toothpaste, deodorant, mouthwash, shampoo and conditioner, body soap, basic makeup, etc. All items must be alcohol-free.
  • Comfortable clothing – You’re not going to rehab to dress to impress. Wear whatever will help you stay calm, relaxed, and receptive to treatment.
  • Sunscreen / sunblock – You may be outside for longer periods of time than you realize, and many rehab programs offer plenty of time in the sun.
  • Cozy pajamas – It seems like a no-brainer, but be sure to pack for comfort at all times, not just during the day!
  • Extra underwear – Especially if you are going through detox, you may sweat more than usual and will want to change more frequently to stay comfortable.
  • Some cash and/or a debit card – You may have opportunities to purchase snacks or make other small purchases. 

Other Items You May Want to Bring

There may be some items considered “essential” to rehab that you may not consider in everyday life. During most programs, you will spend time both inside and outside, and you will also have opportunities to exercise and focus on health. It’s also perfectly normal to want to bring along at least some small items for comfort and inspiration. 

With these things in mind, other items you may want to bring include:

  • A workout outfit and sneakers / tennis shoes – Entering addiction recovery is the perfect time to start practicing overall health. Many rehab centers offer fitness classes or have a gym on-premise for your wellbeing.
  • Sandals / flip flops – Not only may these options be more comfortable for you, but you may also be taking shoes on and off more frequently. 
  • A modest swimsuit – For most rehab facilities, this means swim trunks for men and a one-piece for women. 
  • Bathrobe and slippers – Just another way to keep comfortable!
  • A journal – Some addiction treatment centers will give you a journal to write in, but either way, it’s a good thing to bring. Chronicling your progress and exploring your thoughts will help keep you on track. 
  • A small photo or encouraging letters from family and friends – Contact the facility first to ask what is and isn’t permitted in this area, but a reminder from home that you are loved and cared about is usually acceptable.

Things to Avoid Bringing

Again, all facilities have their own sets of rules. However, you will generally want to avoid bringing the following items. Not only can these get in the way of your treatment (and that of others), but you may also not have an opportunity to use them in the first place:

  • Entertainment devices – Most electronics are prohibited in the first place, so don’t bring any entertainment devices that require charging and/or internet connection. Many rehab facilities even require you to leave items like phones and tablets at the front desk when you check in to prevent any distraction during treatment.
  • Aerosols, alcohol or chemicals – Make sure none of your toiletries should contain these items as they may invoke drug abuse urges. 
  • Opened vitamins or supplements – Many places will allow you to bring these in for health reasons, but only if they are unopened. If you have any medication you need to take, disclose it upfront while you’re checking in.
  • Weapons – Even if you are legally carrying the weapon, it will not be permitted inside for your safety and that of others.
  • Candles or incense products – This is usually for safety reasons, but other people in the program may also be irritated by these scents.

 

Still Looking for an Addiction Treatment Program?

It’s not too late to confront your drug abuse and go to rehab. At Footprints of Serenity, we help individuals from all walks of life find the addiction treatment program that works for them. Get in touch with us today to learn more about your options and what to expect in rehab.