Five Harmful Myths About Addiction

When it comes to drug use and addiction, there are no easy answers. As with many complex issues, several factors play a role in what leads a person to turn to substance abuse. Yet one of the more troubling aspects of this topic are the misconceptions surrounding the people suffering from this condition. The following are just a few examples of some of the commonly held beliefs when it comes to drug abuse:

  1. “Addicts can stop whenever they want.” The main flaw in this belief is that it operates under the assumption that the addict is always making a conscious choice. It’s common to hear “If he loves me, he’d stop” from the loved one of an addict. But unfortunately, the situation is simply not that cut and dry. Addiction stems from a mental dependency that can trigger a compulsive need for the addict to seek out comfort by way of the substance. While it is possible to break the cycle in time, it’s not something that can easily be ended on a whim.

 

  1. “Addiction is a sign of weak morals.” While it’s hard to define morality across the board, the issue of right and wrong become tricky when discussing substance addiction. Genetics, environment, and psychological factors can all play a role in driving someone to seek comfort in drugs and alcohol, not just what they’ve been taught as being good or bad.

 

  1. “Only ‘hard’ or ‘street’ drugs are dangerous.” This is a concept that is starting to be more openly discredited as addiction to prescription drugs has become more widely discussed. However, it’s still important to consider that an addiction can also involve other legal substances such as alcohol, sleep aids, or stimulants such as ADHD medication.

 

  1. “There is nothing friends or family can do.” It’s easy to see yourself as powerless when dealing with a loved one’s addiction, but there is always something that friends and family can offer to help. Being a consistent presence of positivity and support during hard times and offering guidance to those in need does a great deal to aid the recovery process.

 

  1. “Relapse is a sign of failure.” This view is probably one of the most dangerous as it can often breed feelings of shame, guilt, and hopelessness in the minds of those who had previously been attempting to seek help. Relapse is a normal part of the recovery process and when handled properly can be used as a tool to help steer those recovering back on the right path.

 

Lack of information on the true issues of addiction is often what causes these myths to thrive and over time can cause more harm than good when dealing with those who are recovering. If you need assistance with your substance abuse issues, remember that it’s never too late to seek help.  And if you are dealing with a friend or loved one who is on the path to recovery, remember to stay positive and open-minded during their challenging time.

 

If you have questions about rehab, please give us a call. We’re open 24/7. Our treatment specialists can assist you. We’re here to help!

Tips for Staying Sober

addiction treatment in Los Angeles

Once you’ve made the courageous decision to get sober, and you have found your treatment center, you may be wondering what life will be like when you transition back into your life. When you’re seeking out addiction treatment in Los Angeles, be prepared for your post-treatment center process.

A treatment center is a highly-controlled, safe environment for your first steps in the life of sobriety. However, soon you will be back in your life, surrounded by the spaces you lived in when you were using. It is important to immediately break the habits you participated in within those spaces and create new habits. Below you’ll find new habits and methods as you begin your addiction treatment in Los Angeles.

Embrace Change

Explore new, healthy habits that you can begin upon your return. Start your day with a healthy breakfast, and get outside for exercise and fresh air. Change your mindset towards your life—think about how that healthy breakfast is giving you the energy to work or talk with friends and family. Notice how exercise changes your thought patterns, maybe even clears your mind.

Write about Your Changes

Keep a journal to log your changes in energy, feelings, emotions. This is a way to create accountability, while also building concentration. When you really begin to reflect on how you feel after your addiction treatment in Los Angeles, you can recognize the changes in thought patterns and behaviors.

Focus on Action Rather Than Inaction

Keep your mind focused on what you are actively doing. When you find yourself concentrating on the drugs, alcohol, or other substances you are not doing, your mind tends to fixate and spiral…stop that spiral by turning your thoughts to what you are doing now that is different. For example, you are seeking addiction treatment in Los Angeles. You are exercising every day to build your strength. You are eating healthy to build your energy.

Final Word

Remember all these steps when you are building sobriety and staying sober. If you are still seeking a positive, effective addiction treatment in Los Angeles, consider Ridgeview Ranch. To learn more about Ridgeview, visit the site at ridgeviewranchca.org.

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!

 

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!