What Types of Addictions Do you treat?

All substances and most types of behavioral addictions.

What is Addiction?

Human beings often seek out unique experiences and mind altering substances. For many people who are social users, whether it is alcohol or another substance, the changes enhance the pleasure of the particular circumstance. In the beginning, the person with addiction may find the substance or behavior has been positive and pleasant. However, over time, people with addiction begin to experience:

  • Negative consequences from their use of substances or addictive behaviors
  • Unpredictability of their behavior and moods
  • Loss of control over the use of the substance or addictive behavior
  • Complaints by others regarding their behavior
  • The need for formal treatment, including increased structure and limit setting.

When a person has addiction, the dysfunction is in the brain, and this manifests itself in impaired behavior, thinking, judgment and changing level of consciousness and moods. The brain is influenced by abnormalities in the levels of chemicals, called “neurotransmitters”. The changes to the brain involve our reward centres, through a direct effect on the brain transmitter, dopamine. The faster the stimulation to these areas of the brain, the more powerful are the reinforcing effects (i.e., Drugs that are smoked have onset of action more rapidly than drugs injected > snorted > oral ingestion and so forth). Drugs that attach to the receptor sites in the brain quickly, but leave quickly tend to be more difficult addictions to overcome; for example, heroin, nicotine, cocaine, get into the brain very rapidly, release dopamine quickly, but then let go of the receptors quickly, causing the person to want to take the substances again, right away.

To correct these levels back to normal, there must first be a period of abstinence from all drugs of abuse (at least 90 days for most drugs) to allow the brain to “reboot” and the neurotransmitters to get back to normal levels.

Do you Detox?

Yes, we provide medically supervised safe and comfortable detox for alcohol, benzodiazepines, opiates, nicotine, caffeine and other substances. We have nurses on duty 24 hours per day and our physicians are able to provide medications to assist the resident not only detox, but also to help with cravings and withdrawal symptoms.

Why abstinence?

The American Society of Addiction Medicine has defined Addiction as follows:

“Addiction is a primary, chronic disease of brain reward, motivation, memory and related circuitry. Dysfunction in these circuits leads to characteristic biological, psychological, social and spiritual manifestations. This is reflected in an individual pathologically pursuing reward and/or relief by substance use and other behaviors.

Addiction is characterized by inability to consistently abstain, impairment in behavioral control, craving, diminished recognition of significant problems with one’s behaviors and interpersonal relationships, and a dysfunctional emotional response. Like other chronic diseases, addiction often involves cycles of relapse and remission. Without treatment or engagement in recovery activities, addiction is progressive and can result in disability or premature death.”

For people with the disease of addiction, abstinence is most preferred manner of treatment. A person with brain chemistry that impairs his or her ability to control their impulses does not have the ability to stop with a moderate amount of drug or alcohol use.

Fortunately, we have medications that can help with cravings, help stabilize brain chemistry and support recovery. Research has conclusively shown that the safest treatment for the disease of addiction is complete abstinence from alcohol or the drug of choice. With time and training, the addict can lead a normal life, but it must be without the substance(s) or behaviors that cannot be voluntarily controlled.

What should I bring?

High Priority:

  1. Photo ID – Driver’s license, Work or School ID
  2. Health Card
  3. Medical, Dental, Vision & Prescription Cards – BRING ALL CARDS
  4. Prescribed medication –in original containers.
    (All medications will be turned over to medical staff for monitoring.)
  5. Over the counter medications and supplements.
  6. A list of all medications with dosages and frequencies preferably printed directly from your pharmacy.
  7. A list of all treating physicians and psychiatrists, along with phone numbers

Note: Illegal Substances and the following medications are not permitted and will be destroyed: Tranquilizers, benzodiazepines, barbiturates, opiates, narcotics, stimulants, sleeping medication, hallucinogens, methadone and anabolic steroids.

Personal Items:

  1. Appropriate and comfortable clothing for 1- 2 weeks (Laundry facilities are provided)
  2. Weather appropriate clothing (Remember to layer)
  3. Appropriate clothing for recreation, exercise and yoga – sweats, sneakers, shorts, t-shirts, modest bathing suits
  4. Raincoat/umbrella for inclement weather
  5. Hat or baseball cap to wear on walks
  6. Sunscreen and bug repellent
  7. Toiletries – make-up, shampoo, soap, toothbrush, shaving articles, hairdryer, etc
  8. Money or access to debit/credit card for incidentals (will be stored in the safe)
  9. Watch to ensure commitment to scheduled activities.
  10. Water bottle
  11. Travel coffee mug
  12. Bathrobe
  13. Pool towel

You may also bring family pictures, pens, pencils, journals, stamps, recovery or religious reading material. Light reading material must be appropriate in nature and content.

What Not To Bring

  1. Tobacco chew, cigars or pipes
  2. Aerosol cans
  3. Electronic gear –radios, TVs, video games, or cameras (nothing with an off and on switch.)
  4. Pillows or comforters.
  5. Food, candy or beverages
  6. Sexual paraphernalia
  7. Weapons of any kind – including pocket knives
  8. Large sums of money, expensive jewelry, or valuable personal items that may be tempting for others to take.

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