Drunk Driving: Know the Consequences

The costs are greater than you know

How many times have you been in this situation? You’re out at a bar or club, you’ve had a few drinks and you’re feeling pretty good. As the night winds down, it’s time to go home. You know you’re not sober, but it’s not that big a deal, right? You can drive just fine. Of course, the truth is that you can’t. Your judgment has been impaired by alcohol. Every time you decided to drive drunk, you’re putting not just your own life, but the lives of other drivers at risk. Maybe you’ve gotten lucky and have never experienced the negative consequences of driving under the influence, but statistics show that if you continue to press your luck, it’s just a matter of time until you do.

drunk driving facts

When you get behind the wheel drunk, you put everyone at risk

If you’re wondering just how many drinks it takes to diminish your judgment, it’s much less than you would think. One drink is typically defined as 1.5 ounces of liquor, 5 ounces of wine, or twelve ounces of beer, and after just two drinks, your ability to judge yourself and your surroundings begin to drop. After three or four, your coordination, alertness, and concentration have gone. Finally, at five or six drinks, your response time becomes dangerously slow, your ability to process what you see in front of you becomes severely impaired and the odds of you being able to pay attention to the road are basically non-existent.

So what’s the potential for damage? According to Mothers Against Drunk Driving, drunk driving kills 27 people a day, and has been either directly or indirectly responsible for thirty thousand deaths in just the last three years, and it’s estimated that six thousand of them were children. Even if you yourself are not injured while drunk driving, there’s a thirty-three percent chance that you will injure someone else. If these statistics are not enough to deter you, there’s also the legal aspect. More than a million and a half arrests for drunk driving are made every year, and more and more sobriety checkpoints are being set up as time goes on, which makes it more likely that even if you don’t injure or kill someone with your driving, you can still end up getting arrested, losing your license, and even going to prison.

Final Word

The next time you’re out drinking, designate a sober driver, call a cab or use the Uber or Lyft apps, call a friend, take the bus. There are so many easy alternatives to getting behind the wheel drunk and potentially killing yourself and others. For more information and a list of drunk driving resources, you can visit Alcoholawareness.org, and if you or a loved one is in need of help with substance abuse, Call Ridgeview Ranch Today at (800) 296-1868. We’re Here to Help!

Rethinking Relapses: What Falling Off the Wagon Can Teach You

Rethinking Relapses: What Falling Off the Wagon Can Teach You - Ridgeview Ranch, Los Angeles, CA

A relapse doesn’t mean you’ve failed

It never feels good to relapse – or, it can feel good in the moment, but all too soon a relapse is accompanied by feelings of guilt and regret. Our Pasadena rehab center understands that relapsing can feel like a failure, but it doesn’t have to be. In fact, a relapse can often help open the door to more lasting success with quitting.

Relapses happen, what can we learn from them?

The most important thing to recognize is that successfully implementing major behavioral changes, like recovering from addiction, is a long and winding road, and that very few people nail it on the first try. Studies show that eighty percent of alcoholics will drink again at least once, and between sixty and ninety percent of smokers will smoke again within a year of quitting, which shows that relapse tends to be the rule and not the exception. The good news? Those same studies show that there are at least two million more ex-smokers than current smokers in the country, and in one of the largest U.S. surveys of alcohol use, only one-quarter of the people addicted to alcohol were still drinking heavily the following year. Another study revealed that of a sample of cocaine addicts who had undergone treatment, more than half were still clean and sober five years later. It’s also important to remember that one slip-up doesn’t have to mean a complete and total relapse. Falling off the wagon can feel like you’ve canceled out all your hard work, but that kind of defeatist thinking just makes things worse. Instead of feeling guilty, try to think hard about how the relapse happened. What were you feeling? Who were you with? What had been happening in your life? This way, along with help from our Pasadena addiction treatment center, you can learn from your relapse and develop better techniques for anticipating, and therefore avoiding, another one.

Final word

The journey of completely kicking an addiction is one that may never be truly over. And that’s all right! What matters is you don’t let a relapse stop you from picking yourself back up and getting back on the wagon. If you or a loved one is in need of help with substance abuse, Call Ridgeview Ranch Today at (800) 296-1868. We’re Here to Help!

What Happens When You Give Up Alcohol

Here are some things you can expect when you decide to stop drinking

Whether you feel like you’re just overdoing it on the drinking and want to stop before it becomes an issue or it has already become a problem that is affecting your work and personal relationships, giving up alcohol can be a difficult process, as it is still an extremely addictive substance. Nonetheless, there are so many benefits to giving up drinking that it is worth pushing through the pains of withdrawal. You’ll very quickly start to see how putting a stop to drinking can improve so many aspects of your life. However, there are some negative things to expect as well as your body adjusts to the lack of alcohol. That’s why we’ve compiled a helpful overview of some of the things – good and bad – that you can expect when you give up alcohol.

ALCOHOL FREE ZONE

What you need to know

First, the bad news: There’s a strong chance you’ll be getting sugar cravings. The reason for this is that when you stop drinking, you’re denying your body a source of the “happy-making” chemical dopamine that it’s become used to getting from alcohol on a regular basis. With this sudden lack of a dopamine source, your body will more likely be making you reach for something sweet instead as a substitute. Another thing to expect is the difficulty while being around others who are drinking. If you’re just starting to kick the addiction, we recommend avoiding being around people who are drinking entirely. You’ll have to deal with the feeling of missing out, but being around people who are drinking, especially if you were frequently a social drinker before you quit, can drive you crazy with envy and desire for a drink and can make quitting that much harder.

But let’s move on to the good stuff: When you quit drinking, you’ll find yourself sleeping more soundly. While studies have found that alcohol may make you fall asleep more quickly, it disrupts the quality of sleep so you wake up feeling groggy and even more tired than when you went to bed. But when you stop drinking, quality of sleep improves, which not only is good news for your mood and concentration but your overall health in general. You’ll also find yourself losing weight without consuming all those extra carbs that hide in alcohol, especially sugary ones like margaritas and piña coladas. And a definite major bonus? You’ll have more money! Drinking, especially if you’re fond of expensive wine, scotch or whiskey, can leave you with an empty wallet. Take time to do the math and you’ll quickly realize that, while you may be missing out on those nights out, you’re saving yourself a bundle.

Final word

Quitting an addictive substance is never easy, but in the end, the benefits always outweigh any negative you might encounter. You’ll find yourself with an overall better quality of life and ensure that you’re there for the people you care about and who care about you. If you or a loved one is in need of help with substance abuse, Call Ridgeview Ranch Today at (800) 296-1868. We’re Here to Help!

Say NO to Alcohol

 

 

Prescription Pain Pills: The Dangers of Addiction

It’s important to know the signs and perils of prescription painkiller addiction

Painkiller abuse has been referred to as a growing epidemic. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, opioid overdose has been responsible for more than one hundred and sixty-five thousand deaths between 1999 and 2014. More than half of these overdose deaths involved prescription opioids and in 2014 alone, more than 14,000 people died of prescription opioid overdose. Efforts to combat it have included prescription drug monitoring programs, which is meant to combat things like “doctor shopping,” someone using multiple doctors in order to get as many prescriptions as they can. With all the clear dangers for prescription painkiller abuse as well as statistics about overdoses, some might wonder how someone can even let themselves get addicted in the first place. But addiction is, of course, not at all that simple. There’s a myriad of ways and reasons that people can become addicted to prescription painkillers, but luckily, there’s also help in the form of addiction treatment centers like Ridgeview Ranch.

 

Early warning signs

The first thing to understand is the difference between dependence on a drug and addiction to it. When you are dependent on a drug, that means that your body has built up a tolerance to the drug and you need to take more and more of it to feel its effects, and can suffer a withdrawal without it. While this is a facet of addiction, it does not constitute it. Addiction is dependency in the context of compulsive drug use, even in the face of dangerous and harmful consequences. It’s a dependency that becomes not just physical but mental, an inability to stop using and a failure to meet life responsibilities and obligations. Warning signs of the beginnings of an addiction can sometimes be difficult to spot until it’s too late, even if you’re the one who is sliding into addiction. It’s important to know the warning signs to watch out for:

  • You’re taking a different number of pills than prescribed by your doctor. Whether it’s taking more at once or more often than your doctor has told you to, this is an early sign of a budding addiction. Deciding your own dosage instead of following your doctor’s orders may be indicative of a problem.

 

  • You’ve been using painkillers for a long time. A doctor prescribes you painkillers after a surgery or otherwise because you hurt. But they are not meant to be a permanent solution. If you’re still taking prescription pain medication after the pain should have gone away, this is a big warning sign that something is wrong. It might be that you just enjoy the way they make you feel, or you’ve started to physically need them. Both of these are signs of addiction and reasons to get help before it’s too late.

 

  • You’re getting painkillers from other sources than a doctor. While there is a crackdown on “doctor shopping,” there are other places to get pills from, such as ordering them online, stealing from people’s medicine cabinets, buying other people’s prescription medication or even purposefully hurting yourself so you can get access to more. All of these are very serious signs that you have an addiction, both that you are getting drugs from illegal sources and that you feel the need to “stockpile.”

Final Word

It can be frighteningly easy to misuse painkillers, even when you try not to do it. The most important thing to remember is honesty. Be honest with your doctor, your friends and family, and of course, yourself. If there’s a problem and you see yourself or someone you care about exhibiting these signs, know that there are addiction specialists and treatment centers that are there to help and can get your life back on track and back to normal. Here at Ridgeview Ranch Treatment Center, we understand the roots of addiction and are committed to providing hope and healing.

If you or a loved one need advice or help with painkillers, please call our Hotline, 24/7, (800) 296-1868, to speak with one of our treatment specialists for assistance. We are here for you…

Ridgeview Ranch has every direction covered! Call Today!

 

Do I Have the Disease of Addiction?

Oftentimes, as addicts, we tend to believe that we do not have a problem and “we can stop whenever we want”. We think, “It’s temporary, I’m not hurting anyone”. Until, one day, you do hurt yourself and those around you. Once in the deepest grips of addiction, things tend to take a backseat to your addiction. Everything begins to revolve around your addiction and when you can get your next hit. Things become extremely distorted; even when every person around you who loves you is telling you otherwise. If you have ever had the thought “do I have a problem?” enter your mind for even a split second– it is likely you have an addiction. Luckily, there are places you can go to for help. Ridgeview Ranch Drug Rehabilitation Centers Los Angeles is here for you. We want to help you. You just have to let us.

 

Have you ever missed work or special occasions because you were too busy getting high or drunk? Most people who are fortunate enough not to have an addiction, typically, make it to work on time, work well, keep up their homes, themselves– physically, mentally, and spiritually. They seem to be productive and contributing members of society (that is not to say non-addicted beings can fall short of all of those things despite their lack of addiction). When your drug of choice is at the forefront of your mind at all times, it becomes difficult to keep up with your daily life. You may become isolated, which only feeds the addiction further. Looking back one day, you will likely think of all the special events and occasions you missed because you were too drunk or high. This is not normal. There are other ways in which you will learn can be more fun than you imagined. Learn to actually live and try new things. You can learn to be THERE again. At Ridgeview Ranch California Rehab Centers there are different programs to help you transition back to a normal life, such as, meditation.

 

Can you stop? Have you ever tried stopping for long periods of time? If you’re unable to put it down for even a day, it’s likely that you have a problem. Many people can come home and have one glass of wine to wind down, whereas, addicts and alcoholics may come home and have one glass of wine…followed by all the wine you can find in your house. One is never enough! (Repeat that a few times.)

Ridgeview Ranch Drug Rehab - There Are No Shortcuts to Any Place Worth Going

 

Does your drug of choice bring ANY positivity to your life? Does it make the people you love happy? Does it better your life in any way whatsoever (other than making you feel good, until you don’t, then you need more)? You are filling your body with toxins and chemicals that can kill you if abused. This disease isn’t a joke. It is life-threatening. It fills your life with negativity and hurts you and those around you. So, really, ask yourself what the benefits of this addiction are.

 

Have any of your loved ones inquired about your “problem”? If anyone if your life has ever mentioned your addiction, it’s likely you have a problem. The people who know you best, are able to notice an extreme change in behaviors. If it persists, they will ask you if you are okay and if you need help. This is not commonplace for all people. Again, nothing good comes from an addiction.

 

Do you oftentimes feel guilty? After a night of binge drinking or being on other substances, do you wake up (or stay awake) and think of all the things you did the night before? Would you ever do half of the things you do while influenced by drugs and alcohol, while you were sober? These feelings of guilt will forever stay if you continue doing what you’re doing. If your life is slowly slipping away from you and you feel nothing but guilt, sadness, anxiety, and frustration– you can stop by getting help. Learn to accept and let go of your past and move on. With our group and individual therapy, you are afforded the opportunity to delve into the deeper issues behind your disease.

 

You can get help. There is no need to feel embarrassed. Addiction has become a tragic epidemic. You are the furthest thing away from being alone. You don’t want to look back at your life and either not remember a thing or only remember all the terrible things you did, all the moments you missed, and all the days you wasted because of your disease. It’s never too late to get help. Your world can go from a dark and gloomy bubble of negative energy and guilt to a life of light and positive energy and love. If you keep doing the same exact thing over and over expecting different results– that is insanity. Nothing will change if you don’t change your behaviors. The first step is coming to terms with your disease and admitting you have a problem. There are hotlines, web forums, and places like Rehab Center Los Angeles, Ridgeview Ranch, that can help you along the way. A way to a better more joyful path. You have the opportunity to change your life around and actually LIVE! It really is never too late. Give Ridgeview Ranch a Call Today at (800) 296-1868 and take the first step to your new and happy life.

:LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL at Ridgeview Ranch

Families in Recovery

At Ridgeview Ranch, You're Not Alone - We're Here to Help.

As greatly as addiction interferes and tears an addict’s life apart, their families oftentimes go through the same heartbreak and exhaustion. While an individual in your family is addicted to a substance, they are no longer themselves. They are controlled solely by their want and need for their substance of choice. They are not thinking of others and how what they are doing is severely affecting those around them–those who care about them most. Loving an addict is heart-wrenching. You may try everything you can to help them, but sometimes that just turns into enabling them. You must, at some point, let them hit rock bottom, so they can find their way back. An addict has to have the urgency and want to seek help on their own. You cannot push them. You can stop speaking to them until they get clean. Anything you do seems painful. There is help out there.

Ridgeview Ranch Knows the Path to Recovery and can Help YOU!

The pain of watching someone you love in such agony, suffering, and pain is not easy. There are many stories of addicts who got help and got clean and they will say that when they were in the grips of addiction nothing mattered except how to get their next fix. It truly is a sad disease. At least there is help out there, and things you can try to do to help yourself and the people around you. It’s best to know more about the situation.

Ridgeview Ranch is the first step to treating a drug or aclohol addiction

You can first try to educate yourself on recovery and addiction. Find out what is going through their mind and what they are physically going through. Don’t blame yourself. It’s best not to accuse or judge. This is why it is important to educate yourself, so you can better approach the awful situation. There is hope. Make sure you are able to provide a clean zone for them. Don’t do anything that might trigger them. There are many books about recovery and addiction, as well as programs specifically geared toward the families of drug addicts. There are meetings for you, too. Talk to others, share your stories, in a safe place. Make sure you don’t stop living. Take care of yourself. Always remember the three Cs of dealing with an addict: You didn’t cause the addiction. You can’t control the addiction. You can’t cure the addiction. At Ridgeview Ranch, we offer family programs. If you find yourself searching the internet for the best rehab center Los Angeles, give Ridgeview Ranch a Call Today at (800) 296-1868–We are here to help you!

Is My Loved One an Addict?

Today is never too late to be brand new - Ridgeview Ranch, Los Angeles, CAIn today’s society, drinking and using drugs is somewhat romanticized in the media. People of all ages, mainly those that are very impressionable, see various celebrities dabble with drugs, glorify copious amounts of drinking, going in and out of rehab as though it is simply a “normal” cycle, and people begin to think “Hmm, I’m okay. I don’t have a problem. It’s normal and possibly even cool”. Of course, that’s not to say that that is the sole cause of addiction; it’s an aid. Another wondrous aid– social media! It is the perfect outlet for people to paint a picture they want everyone to see– bottles on bottles in the VIP section, keg stands at tailgates, chugging from “fancy” bottles, etc. It’s difficult for some people to keep up (safely) with these pictures or differentiate perception versus reality. Some people are able to have one or two drinks and stop. Some people drink and their personalities don’t change except for an added tinge of happiness, but that is where they stop.

A person battling addiction doesn’t know when to stop. Once they have a sip– game on! You may notice your loved one drinking excessively and when they do, they are completely different people. There are many types of alcoholics, binge drinkers are just one of many varying forms. Drinking to the point of blacking out more than once in a month, is certainly not normal. If you cannot control yourself, and have absolutely no ability to stop yourself, you likely have a problem. Then you have the alcoholic that comes to most minds when the word alcoholic is said. The one that never stops drinking. From the second they wake up, to the minute they go to bed, they are deep into mass amounts of alcohol to keep from withdrawing. Once you become powerless to anything, you have no control. You can try everything to stop, and just can’t.

If your loved one is suffering from the disease of addiction, bombarding them with it constantly may push them away. They may begin to isolate and become distant. Their lives become a dark cave of lies, guilt, shame, hopelessness, and suffering. The people who love them; friends and family, suffer as well. There are tests they can take (see below), asking questions that may lead to the conclusion that maybe getting help is the next step. There is light at the end of the tunnel. Keeping yourself informed is the greatest way to help someone. Approach the situation from a sincere place. Knowledge is power, read about it, and ask about it.

H.O.P.E. - Hold On, Pain Ends - Ridgeview Ranch, Los Angeles, CAIf YOU think you are an addict and you don’t want anyone to know, and don’t know who to tell, or aren’t ready to stop, think about your life in the long term; will you live a deep and meaningful life that is not completely dependent on alcohol or drugs? Will you be able to develop and maintain successful relationships? Do you want the rest of your life, for your partner to be your drug of choice? Can you stop? Can you go months without it? Have you ever Googled “How can I get help” WHILE under the influence? Do you oftentimes find yourself waking up in the morning not wanting to talk to or see anyone because you are embarrassed about things you may have done or said the night before? Do you wake up worried about your drunken Facebook postings? If you’re answering yes to most of these, and you can relate to many of the things in this blog, call Ridgeview Ranch Treatment Center TODAY at (800) 296-1868 to speak confidentially with one of our recovery specialist, available 24/7, to answer your questions, provide you help and support and to guide you to a new life of healing and sobriety.

Remember, the first step towards a better life is admitting you have a problem! The rest will come and your life will start to change in beautiful ways. No one deserves a life of dependency and darkness. Live the life you deserve.

About.com Alcoholism Screening Quiz

Addiction: A Family Disease

Addiction: A Family Disease - Ridgeview Ranch treats the family as wellLife is a constant series of choices. Sometimes they are simple choices; wakeup or hit the snooze button, turn right at the light or go straight through the intersection. Sometimes the choices are much harder; speak up when you’ve made a mistake or let someone else take the blame. Making hard choices are never easy and sometimes doing what is right or even what is in our best interest is a painful road.

Getting help for an addiction is one of the hardest choices anyone can ever make. Do you walk a tough, scary and sometimes lonely road toward a better life or do you continue to do that thing that feels good now but causes unimaginable hurt to you and to the people you love?

Addiction is a progressive disease, and without treatment, it only gets worse. Addiction is also a family disease; everyone in the family is affected. “Addiction affects the stability of the home, the unity of the family, mental and physical health, and the overall family dynamic” (Research & News, 2010). Recovery is a lifelong process and the family requires treatment just as the addict requires treatment.

At Ridgeview Ranch, we support not only our clients but their families as well. In addition to the client’s recovery work, we offer family therapy to help ensure the best possible outcome. “With treatment, both the addict and family members can go on to live full, happy, and productive lives. For the addict, this will be the new normal. For family members who have learned how best to support their loved one in recovery and how to take care of themselves, it may well become the better normal” (Research & News, 2010).

Blog written by Leanne Reece, Substance Abuse Counselor, Ridgeview Ranch Treatment Center

Residential Treatment for Addictions

Ridgeview Ranch EastIn Residential Treatment, recovery is the sole focus of our client’s lives – this is what leads to long-term sobriety.

Addiction is chemical, psychological and behavioral.

Intensive and individualized Residential Treatment takes time [30 to 90 days or longer if necessary] after clients detox, to begin the psychological and emotional discovery of why they use. We help them discover and recover, in a positive way.

The body must first heal the damage, build back up and become physically strong. Our clients practice and participate in yoga, stress reduction, meditation, equine, art therapy, hypnotherapy as well as other therapeutic and holistic treatment to heal and calm the body and mind.

In conjunction, we help our clients rebuild their psychological and emotional health – to find the root of their addictions – so they become emotionally strong. We utilize Group Sessions, Coping Skills work, Relationship, Individual and Family Counseling and 12-Step/Concept meetings, and Education and Process Groups to build a firm psychological foundation for long-term sobriety.

Then, we help Transition [30 days or more – whatever time deemed necessary] clients back to their lives with Sober Living. Ridgeview Ranch provides individual, client and family After Care programs and Relapse Prevention Planning for one year after the client is discharged from residential treatment to help insure their long-term success.

Our Client’s Success is Our Success!