The Importance of Medically Supported Detox and Residential Treatment

Every person deserves the chance to be happy and live well. Life’s sweetest recipe is made with love, support, and careful guidance through the murky waters of partying and drug abuse.

Clinical Addiction Specialists, such as the ones staffed at Ridgeview Ranch, are trained to conquer the most difficult obstacles when it comes to detoxing and rehabilitation. Our world-renowned treatment center provides 24-hour clinical support, a clean, comfortable setting, nutritiously balanced meals and recreational activities proven to help residents thrive in treatment.

The first step on the road to recovery is the hardest. If you or someone you know is ready to join a drug or alcohol addiction program, seeking the right specialists is key. At a medically supported detox and residential treatment center, you can ensure you’re getting the best attention and licensed care possible.

Ridgeview Ranch is a CARF accredited treatment center, delivering the highest level of accredited rehabilitative care in the country! We employ a team of highly credentialed Addiction Counselors, Master-Level Therapists, and Addiction Specialists known throughout the industry for effectively addressing the core issues of chemical dependency and mental health.

When you’re battling something as critical and life-changing as drug detox and addiction, you want the best chance for recovery on your side. Not only does medical attention help ease the transition to sober living, residential treatment programs greatly increase the chance of long-lasting success and recovery.

As the leading drug detox center in Los Angeles, our luxurious homes and holistic, stress-reducing activities are designed with your health and wellness in mind. We urge everyone struggling with addiction to seek medical help. Know you’re not alone! Call (877) 526-7706 for a complimentary, confidential assessment with our board-certified clinical team today. Your path to healing begins here.

5 Must-Knows For Getting Through The Holidays During Recovery

For some people, the holidays are a time to let loose and celebrate. However, for those recovering from addiction, it can be tough to watch as family and friends indulge from the sidelines. Remember, everyone’s path to healing is different and your strengths rely on your ability to stay sober, even through the hardest (or happiest) of occasions. 

Excessive drinking and drug use alter the way our brain functions, attacking our cognitive abilities and capacity for pleasure. In other words…Our bodies are prone to addiction. Have you ever heard of a chemical substance called dopamine? It’s our brain’s way of rewarding us for having fun. We release dopamine when we’re eating, exercising, laughing…and even more so when we’re consuming drugs or alcohol. No wonder the nightlife here in Southern California is so popular! Our body wants us to feel happy. So, in turn, we naturally seek avenues to which we will have the greatest success.

With the holidays fast approaching, we’re reflecting on 12 years of successful Ridgeview Ranch traditions and addiction treatment. So, we decided to share some of our favorite must-know sober tips with you! We’d also like to remind our readers that phone lines are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Holidays included! When it comes to recovering from drug and alcohol addiction, we’re your home away from home. Know you’re not alone and while those around you may not understand successful detox and recovery, our clinical experts do. 

TIP #1: Plan An Exit Strategy.  

If the urge to drink or use becomes too much to bear, make sure you have a strategy for getting out of there! Uber is your new friend and getting to a place of control and resistance is your destination.

TIP #2: Give Back To The Community. 

There are so many charitable events going on around the holidays. Join a food drive or volunteer at a local shelter. The gratification of helping others will help improve your self-esteem and sense of self-worth. 

TIP #3: Get A Sober Buddy. 

Sober buddies are a big must during the holidays. Addiction treatment is an ongoing process that requires constant support and care. Make sure to bring a sober friend or relative along, as holiday parties are prone to full bars and lots of temptation! 

TIP #4: Avoid Feeling Irritable And Restless. 

If you’ve attended our world-class treatment center, you know how much our addiction specialists stress the importance of whole-body wellness. In order for your recovery to be a success, especially during the stresses of late-night celebrations and overdrawn feasts, remember to eat regularly, try for a full 8 hours night sleep, exercise, and practice meditation exercises to relieve tension. 

TIP #5: Give Thanks To Yourself. 

The holidays are a perfect time to thank yourself and the ones you love the most. What it took this year to beat addiction, and to get you where you are right now, is definitely worth a little gratitude.  Take a moment out of your day to reflect on past accomplishments and write a list of what you’re thankful for. 

This holiday season, we’re thankful for our outstanding client base and dedicated medical staff. The path to healing and recovery truly begins with you! Here at Ridgeview Ranch, our mission is to provide a safe, healing atmosphere to help foster growth and the tools you need to recover from addiction. If you or a loved one is struggling to stay sober, please call us (877) 526-7706 for a free, confidential assessment.  

Chronic Diseases Require Ongoing Treatment

If you find yourself inhibited by alcohol, opiates or any other drugs, seek addiction treatment. Trying to recover all on your own is hard and often unsuccessful. Chronic diseases require constant control and treatment. And unfortunately, during a withdrawal, your brain just doesn’t function at its 100% best.

At Ridgeview Ranch, we recognize how hard it is to recover from addiction. We know the effects it has on your body and mind and we work diligently to overcome these obstacles with you. Our individualized treatment plans are customized to fit each person’s needs, no matter how critical they may be, and target mental, physical and spiritual development to retrain your brain and reactions to drug use.

Southern California has plenty of distractions that can deter you from seeking the addiction treatment you need to heal. Keep in mind, our bodies are constantly seeking happiness and the release of dopamine in our brains. That’s just the nature of our biology. However, if you lack the control to manage destructive impulses such as drug and alcohol consumption and bombard your mind with substances it can’t control, you may lead yourself down a path you don’t want to be on.

Balancing Life and Happiness

In addiction treatment, we’ll teach you how to manage your addiction and find balance in everyday life. Recent studies have shown that stress and cognitive pressure greatly impact the ability to avoid tempting situations, like walking past a bar or designated smoking area. At Ridgeview Ranch, we believe that when it comes to beating addiction, managing stress and physical conditioning will put you back on the path to healthy living. We focus on the “Whole Person” and the characteristics that make each individual unique. Our programs incorporate calming activities such as art, music, and yoga to better treat the underlying behaviors that cause addiction and ensure a successful path to recovery.

If you or a loved one is struggling with alcohol or substance abuse, please If you or a loved one is struggling with alcohol or substance abuse, please Contact Ridgeview Ranch at (877) 526-7706 for a Confidential & Complimentary Assessment with one of our Recovery Specialists. Calls are answered 24 hours a day, every day. We’ve helped so many people overcome addiction. Let us help you too! Calls are answered 24 hours a day, every day. We’ve helped so many people overcome addiction. Let us help you too!

How Families Can Help Addicts After Rehab

The post-rehab period for recovering addicts presents its own challenges. Not only do they need to continue staying sober, but they also have to do it without the constant professional attention they had during treatment. Because of this significant change in their environment, support from family is critical. However, it’s common for family members to feel unsure about how they can help, so here are a few practices that have been successful for families in supporting their loved ones after rehab.

If you have a loved one who is preparing to complete an addiction treatment program and have questions or concerns about supporting them in their post-rehab life, contact Ridgeview Ranch (877-526-7706) to speak with one of our Clinical Professionals.

Learn All You Can

Being better educated on addiction helps family members comprehend what their loved one is going through. In understanding the causes of addiction, family members can avoid falling into a “blame game” and focus on productive approaches to helping and healing. There are many online resources dedicated to educating people on addiction, and most libraries and bookstores also have sections on the subject.

Go to Meetings and Therapy Sessions

Supporting an addict isn’t easy. Frustration can lead to issues in communication and trust. Connecting with other families of addicts through meeting programs like Alcoholics Anonymous allows family members to listen and talk with people who are going through a similar situation. Attending these meetings and learning from them can lessen the difficulties they experience with the addicted person and reduce stress through awareness.

It’s also good to enter a family therapy program or private therapy sessions where a trained professional can help identify and break down feelings of anger and frustration that block healthy relationships. By facing such problems and working through them in personal and group settings, families can build the strong bonds necessary for effective support.

Take Care of Yourself

Because supporting an addict is difficult, stress is inevitable. It’s important for family members to take care of themselves and deal with their stress so they can stay strong in their support. Much of this can be accomplished with exercise and sleep. Simple exercises and activities like jogging or a few laps in the pool are effective in relieving stress. And sleep has long been recognized as essential to mental health. One way to ensure good sleep is to establish a fixed bedtime/waking schedule, which lets your brain develop a natural pattern and “know” when it’s time to sleep.

Manage Your Expectations

It’s understandable that families feel hopeful when their loved one enters an addiction treatment program, and to feel excited when they complete it. But the reality is that it isn’t the end, and it probably will take more time for them to become “themselves” again in their post-rehab life. This is why it’s so important to understand that recovery is a work in progress. Even so, the fact that your loved one is present so the family can be together should be considered a great success in the overall process—so keep those hopes up, but also keep them in check. If you have a loved one who is preparing to complete an addiction treatment program and have questions or concerns about supporting them in their post-rehab life, Contact Ridgeview Ranch (877-526-7706) to speak with one of our Clinical Professionals. Or use our convenient Contact Form.

Staying Sober After Rehab

Recovering from addiction is a great achievement, but it’s also the beginning of a new process. After sobriety has been reached, maintaining it presents yet another challenge. Though treatment centers teach strategies to help recovering addicts deal with difficult situations that can trigger cravings, some fear relapse after leaving rehab. They worry that without the constant support they received during treatment, they will give in to the pressures of everyday life and start using again. But there are steps you can take to ease the transition into life after rehab and stay sober.

Recovering from addiction is a great achievement, but it’s also the beginning of a new process. After sobriety has been reached, maintaining it presents yet another challenge. Ridgeview Ranch is here to help!

Enter a Post-Treatment Program

Some centers offer post-treatment support administered by trained professionals to help recovering addicts stay sober after rehab. Support can come in the form of individual or group counseling, attending support groups, medication, drug testing, and even check-ins either in person or over the phone. If your treatment provider does not offer post-treatment services, ask for a referral to someone who can help.

Form Your Own Support Team

Friends and family members can be a vital source of post-treatment support. Ask some of the people closest to you to be there for you when you need it. You can also build relationships with other recovering addicts you meet through support groups. They are people who can relate to what you are going through and can become someone to lean on.

Practice and Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle

Living a physically active and nutritionally balanced lifestyle has been strongly linked to successful recovery and continued sobriety. You can use an exercise you enjoy as a distraction from cravings or as an “outlet” to reduce stress, one of the most common triggers for relapse. Also, a healthy diet provides your body with the nutrients and energy you need to feel good both physically and mentally.

Know Your Triggers and Manage Them

When you know what situations trigger the urge to use, you can take steps to guard yourself against them. Strategize ways you can avoid being placed in those situations or come up with coping techniques to use when faced with them.

Be Ready to Address a Relapse

Relapse is always a possibility after recovery, but you can plan ahead about what to do in the event of a relapse. Make a list of people to contact (family members, friends, sponsors, health care providers) and have a pre-planned set of steps to follow to seek immediate help from an addiction treatment professional. Having this kind of plan can give peace of mind that you have yourself covered in advance—just in case. On a more practical level, it also gives you a ready guide for finding support and treatment as soon as possible so you can continue recovering.Ridgeview Ranch provides addiction treatment and post-treatment services to help those with drug and alcohol addiction recover and lead healthy lives. Contact Ridgeview Ranch (877-526-7706) with any questions for our team of clinical professionals regarding treatment and assistance staying sober.

How Technology Addiction Affects Families

When most people think about addiction, they think about addiction to drugs or alcohol, or maybe prescription medication. But there is another kind of addiction that is perhaps even more common, and with harmful effects that might be harder to notice: social media and technology addiction.

We’ve all experienced it, the sudden realization that everyone gathered for family time in a living room or surrounded by friends at a restaurant table is actually glued to their smartphone. What seems like a few harmless minutes of scrolling adds up, and people who install “average screen time” monitors on their devices are often astounded at the results. Studies show that mindlessly scrolling through social apps actually makes us unhappy, and yet we continue to waste time looking at social media platforms on our devices instead of spending time on the tasks, work, hobbies, passions, and relationships that we truly want to give energy and attention to.

The scary thing about this addiction is that it is seeping into the daily – and nightly – routines of children at an alarming rate. Almost a quarter of children surveyed in a report by the BBC were online more than their parents.

Consider the impact our technology and social media addictions have on children. According to the BBC, 43% of parents surveyed across Europe were concerned that their children’s gadget use habits had negative effects, and yet many admitted that they set a bad example themselves.

Negative effects of social media discussed in the survey included a decline in both social skills and mental health due to excessive technology use.

Many parents in the survey responded that they weren’t sure how to deal with technology or social media addiction in their families. The BBC put together the following tips for how parents can respond to the technology use of their children in a healthy way:

  • Set house rules such as screen time limits, and what children are allowed to view
  • Talk to children about what they do and see online
  • Encourage them to communicate with friends in online social spaces
  • Teach children to think before they click
  • Use tech tools to limit how much inappropriate content they see
  • Discuss the risks of posting private data, images, and videos to social networks
  • Be a good role model

The scary thing about this addiction is that it is seeping into the daily – and nightly – routines of children at an alarming rate. Almost a quarter of children surveyed in a report by the BBC were online more than their parents. Ridgeview Ranch is here to help. Speak with the experts today!

It seems that when children are concerned, the impetus is on parents to set a healthy example. FastCompany suggests a few ways to curb a harmful habit that can easily spiral out of control:

  • Delete social media or other “time waster” apps from your phone
  • Use apps like Flipd to block addictive apps during certain times of the day
  • Ask your friends to hide your phone for periods of time
  • Consider switching to a non-smartphone (23% of Americans are currently paving the way!)

Think about it – when people talk about the harmful effects of addiction to drugs, alcohol, or medications, the common themes include: decrease in productivity, disconnect with loved ones, a negative example to children, and unhealthy mental health effects. Addiction to social media and technology yield the same results! Let’s work together to call it out as a real addiction and transform our habits and our families!

For more information on addiction recovery, call 877-526-7706 or visit ridgeviewranchca.org

How Your Environment Can Help or Hinder Your Road to Recovery

Environment plays a huge factor in developing addictions or substance abuse habits, as Adi Jaffe Ph.D. explains in Psychology Today. Environments also play a big factor in how successfully you can recover.

As Dr. Jaffe explains, there are several important factors in your environment that can make addiction more or less likely: Family, Peers, Work/School, and Community. If people close to you have or foster an addiction problem, you are more likely to develop an addiction to alcohol, drugs, or other substances.

Likewise, if you are on or want to be on a pathway to recovering from addiction, your environment is equally critical. If you remain around people who are still struggling from addictions or are using the substances you’re trying to break free from, you will have a much harder time staying on track in your recovery. And people are not the only factor. Physical aspects such as places or even rooms in your house can trigger challenges in your recovery.

If you are on or want to be on a pathway to recovering from addiction, your environment is equally critical. If you remain around people who are still struggling from addictions or are using the substances you’re trying to break free from, you will have a much harder time staying on track in your recovery. And people are not the only factor. Physical aspects such as places or even rooms in your house can trigger challenges in your recovery.

The importance of a healthy environment is one reason why a recovery program like Ridgeview Ranch is life-changing. By going to a recovery facility, you are giving yourself the freedom to be fully present in an environment completely dedicated to your wellbeing and recovery.

Wherever you are in your recovery journey, your environment and the people around you make a difference! Recently, Ridgeview Ranch’s Program Manager, Denise Maupin, was honored and recognized at the Long Beach Recovery Awards Ceremony. Ms. Maupin received awards and certificates from the City of Long Beach, Office of the City Council, Sixth District, the United States House of Representatives, Congressman Alan Lowenthal, and the State of California Senate for her awesome service and dedication to the Recovery Community.

What makes her so successful in changing people’s lives? Ms. Maupin has gone through years of personal recovery and understands what it takes to sustain and maintain sobriety. For that reason, she is dedicated to helping individuals heal and recover from substance abuse in all aspects of life. She goes the extra mile to help individuals achieve healing mentally, emotionally and physically. We’re proud of Ms. Maupin for so tangibly showing our community what it means to make a difference.

Ms. Maupin and the entire team here at Ridgeview Ranch are dedicated to creating an environment that is judgment-free and conducive to recovery. If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction or substance abuse, we encourage you to find out more about a community who cares and an environment that can help! Call 877-526-7706, or visit ridgeviewranchca.org

Life Beyond Addiction

It’s common to hear stories about celebrities and public figures falling into substance abuse and addictions. But the stories that really impact us – the stories we should care more about – are the stories of recovery. And while the dangers of addiction and substance abuse is very necessary to stay aware of, it’s important to remember that recovery is always possible! If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction right now, it’s important to see the big picture by recognizing people who have recovered even when it seemed impossible.

Success stories:

Jamie Lee Curtis told CNN that she is proud to be almost 20 years sober from her addiction to painkillers. She says her recovery hasn’t been easy but that she thinks it’s important to talk about how possible recovery is. “There really is hope,” she told CNN, explaining that she has worked hard to break a cycle that she has seen destroy families.

We often hear headlines about celebrities spiraling out of control because of drug and alcohol problems, but the comeback stories are the ones that stick with us.

Another inspiring celebrity success story is Robert Downey Jr.’s recovery from a decades-long battle with drug and alcohol abuse. Downey credits his wife Susan with helping him kick his destructive habits by giving him an ultimatum. Downey told the Daily Mail that he stays sober through a combination of yoga, meditation, therapy, and 12-step programs.

While the dangers of addiction and substance abuse is very necessary to stay aware of, it’s important to remember that recovery is always possible! If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction right now, it’s important to see the big picture by recognizing people who have recovered even when it seemed impossible.

Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe says that personal insecurities and the pressure of the spotlight led him to spend his 20s struggling with alcohol abuse. Radcliffe says that his alcohol problem took him farther and farther away from the person he wanted to be. He now maintains his sobriety by focusing on exercise, quality time with friends, and reading – one of his favorite hobbies.

American actor Rob Lowe spent much of his life in the habit of wild partying and alcohol abuse. He says that even as a teenager, he had a major drinking problem. But knowing his life was on a dangerous trajectory led him to pursue sobriety, live an inspiring success story, and even receive the Spirit of Sobriety award in 2015. To commemorate being a quarter of a century sober and to inspire those struggling as he had, Lowe tweeted “To those struggling with addiction, there is true, real, hope. Twenty-five years ago today, I found recovery and a life of promise. #Grateful.”

Success can be your story too:

As these recovery success stories remind us, hope is always within reach and it’s never too late to turn your life around. Ridgeview Ranch Treatment Center is committed to providing substance abuse treatment for men and women who are struggling with alcoholism, drug addiction, and co-occurring disorders. Don’t hesitate to find out what hope looks like for you by calling our confidential line at 877-526-7706 or use our convenient Contact form.

Pop Culture’s Responsibility for Displaying Addiction and Substance Abuse

From music to fashion modeling trends, much of pop culture glamorizes substance abuse and addiction, often by drawing a seemingly necessary correlation between substance abuse and fame and success.

This kind of portrayal not only leaves a misguided impression on people who might enter an addiction, but it’s also harmful to the addicts and loved ones of addicts who are navigating the very real and long-term horror of addiction.

Thankfully, some films are taking steps toward a more enlightened view. While A Star is Born might still be glamorizing addiction and substance abuse to some extent, but at least it’s showing some of the nuances of being in a relationship where addiction is involved.

One of the most important things to remember is the harmful effects that substance abuse and addiction have on relationships. At the same time, relationships are often some of the best healing paths for people struggling with addiction, because relationships make it harder for addicts to isolate themselves and makes compassionate intervention more natural. Whether it’s through relationships like in A Star is Born or not, the most important thing pop culture can do is remind us that addiction treatment and recovery are always options.

Because addiction is a disease, recovery isn’t a quick fix, but it is always possible. It’s a challenge to manage an addiction daily, which is why we need to remember to support recovering addicts as they navigate their unique challenge to maintain their relationships, jobs, family lives, and contributions to society. You need to call Ridgeview Ranch and speak with one of our Addiction Specialists today.

Pop culture’s responsibility is to navigate the fine line between showing the hope of recovery but also not watering down the dangers and negative effects of addiction and substance abuse. And while some movies like Requiem for a Dream do portray the authentic dark side of addiction, it also shows the addicts as beyond hope of recovery. Saying that recovery is out of reach is also harmful. Thankfully, culture’s perception is slowly changing, especially with the laws around narcotic possession. Many non-violent offenders are now given the option of going to addiction treatment instead of going to jail.

Whether we are making laws or making movies, it’s important to remember that there is always hope for addiction treatment and recovery.

The emphasis on hope is important in part because again, much of pop culture tends to display addiction or substance abuse as a choice, even as a “party lifestyle.” But once an addiction takes over, it isn’t a decision anymore, it’s a serious medical disease.

Just as the long-term effects of substance abuse are often downsized in pop culture, so are the recoveries, if they are shown at all.

Because addiction is a disease, recovery isn’t a quick fix, but it is always possible. It’s a challenge to manage an addiction daily, which is why we need to remember to support recovering addicts as they navigate their unique challenge to maintain their relationships, jobs, family lives, and contributions to society.

We need to do our best to empower our community towards understanding addiction better by removing both the glamor of substance abuse and the stigma of addiction treatment. If you or a loved one needs compassionate support and effective addiction treatment, we’re here for you with 30, 60, or 90-day Residential Treatment Programs. We believe there is always hope! Learn more by calling (800) 296-1868 or use our convenient Contact form.

Nutrition and Recovery

The path to good health starts with a balanced diet. This is something we’ve all become familiar with since learning about the food pyramid in our school days. Yet when people think of the steps towards recovery, the prospect of maintaining a balanced diet is the furthest thing from their minds. The reality is that a proper diet can help those on the road to recovery stay focused on achieving their goals.

The path to good health starts with a balanced diet. This is something we’ve all become familiar with since learning about the food pyramid in our school days. Yet when people think of the steps towards recovery, the prospect of maintaining a balanced diet is the furthest thing from their minds. The reality is that a proper diet can help those on the road to recovery stay focused on achieving their goals.

It may come as no surprise that those struggling with addiction tend to have very poor diets. During their battle with substance abuse, an addicted person will often neglect their nutrition, a stable eating schedule, and healthy food becoming less important than fueling their addiction. Addicts will often fall into the habit of failing to eat, eating cheap foods lacking nutrients, or binge eating after coming down from a high. Weight gain or extreme weight loss is often the side effects of such poorly managed diets along with:

  • Depression
  • Cognitive impairment
  • Muscle degeneration
  • Heart rate inconsistencies
  • Weakened immune system
  • Vitamin deficiencies
  • Electrolyte imbalances

While these side effects can seem overwhelming to manage, they stress the importance of regulating the body’s nutrition.

As we’ve outlined, it’s important for a person combating addiction to strengthen their malnourished body by reintroducing a healthy diet. But the question becomes, where to start? Those who have been abusing alcohol may find that their bodies have become deprived of important vitamins, particularly thiamine which helps with brain, heart, liver, and kidney function. Adding vitamin-rich foods such as dairy products, fruits, peanuts, and plenty of vegetables can help your body function normally.

Opioids can slow down the body’s functions and make people feel sluggish due to a lack of energy. This drug also slows digestion and metabolism, which has the side effect of chronic constipation. A healthy amount of carbohydrates from foods such as whole grains, potatoes, nuts, and beans can help to regulate the blood sugar levels and ease foggy, sluggish feelings. In addition to getting energy from carbs, taking a healthy amount of fiber can help improve digestion. Fiber not only regulates blood sugar and lowers cholesterol, it can also help food move through the digestive system. Oats, nuts, beans, and brown rice are a few examples of foods rich in fiber that can help regulate your digestion.

Those who have been struggling with stimulants such as cocaine, methamphetamines, and crystal meth, are prone to dramatic weight loss. Not only is it likely that they will go for days without eating or sleeping, but those taking stimulants are likely to develop eating disorders such as anorexia. Adding protein and healthy fat to an unbalanced diet can help increase hormones and boost mood. Chicken, eggs, beans, and nuts are great sources of protein while healthy fat can be found in fish, dairy, seeds, and nuts.

Staying hydrated is also key to good health as water protects internal body parts, lubricates joints, and aids the body in putting all those vitamins to use. Dehydration can cause irritability, dizziness, and even fever, so if you’re not a person eager to drink glass after glass of water, you can get hydrated through watermelon, strawberries, cucumbers, or low-sugar sports drinks.

The type of food you eat plays an important role in how your body functions as well as your mental state. When breaking from the grips of addiction, keeping your body nourished while withdrawing can go a long way toward maintaining your overall health. Remember to stay hydrated, take vitamins, and maintain a balanced eating schedule with nutrient-rich foods.

Ready for a New Beginning? Contact one of our Addiction Specialists Today at 877-526-7706 or use our convenient Contact Form. Your privacy is guaranteed.

Veteran Recovery

Ridgeview Ranch knows it’s important to take the time to acknowledge the sacrifices of the men and women in our armed forces. Our courageous men and women in uniform, while symbols of strength and dedication, are also some of our most vulnerable citizens due to the many obstacles they must endure.

As we head into the summer months, you may find yourself planning outdoor activities and get-togethers with friends, but it’s important to take the time to acknowledge the sacrifices of the men and women in our armed forces as well. Our courageous men and women in uniform, while symbols of strength and dedication, are also some of our most vulnerable citizens due to the many obstacles they must endure.

Between struggling with the stress of multiple deployments and the difficulty of reintegration into everyday life, it’s not uncommon for Veterans to return home with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder or PTSD. While PTSD is not an issue exclusive to Veterans (anyone who has witnessed or experienced tragic or startling events can be classified as having this affliction) but enduring warfare and combat makes military personnel more likely to be subjected to it. The stress of dealing with this condition causes many Veterans to turn to substances such as alcohol, illicit drugs, or opioids to cope, creating a vicious and often deadly cycle of dependence.

Studies have shown that approximately 2 in every 10 Veterans with PTSD struggle with addiction and 1 in 4 military deaths can be attributed to substance abuse. While PTSD sufferers use drugs or alcohol to manage their condition, the opposite is far more likely to happen. For example:

  • PTSD sufferers are prone to having trouble falling or staying asleep and often turn to drugs or alcohol to relax, but they can have a negative impact on the quality of sleep and leave sufferers feeling less refreshed.
  • PTSD often creates a feeling of depression and a decrease in self-worth. As many are aware, alcohol is a depressant and can, therefore, increase these negative feelings.
  • Using drugs and alcohol to avoid bad thoughts, memories, dreams, or situations may seem like a way to control PTSD, but avoiding problems means a lack of progress in managing the condition.

While this pattern is alarming, there is hope in the form of treatment. VA facilities have made it easier for servicemen to get help for their addictions as well as their co-occurring PTSD. With individual or group treatments, behavioral therapy, and closely monitored medication, it is possible to manage these afflictions.

At Ridgeview Ranch, we respect and admire the service of our uniformed men and women. The Ridgeview Ranch facility is proud to have recently been approved to become a provider of VA services and will begin implementing drug and alcohol treatment to Veterans. Our staff is honored to be given the opportunity to help military personnel find a healthier path and look forward to working with them in the very near future. If you’re interested in learning more about the type of drug and alcohol treatment services that we offer Veterans in the Los Angeles area and how to obtain these services, please visit:  https://ridgeviewranchca.org/Veterans/. Or if you prefer, call Ridgeview Ranch for a new beginning at 877-526-7706