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Alcohol Awareness Month 2014

by James Heller 11. April 2014 14:08
When you work in a field that deals with alcoholism on a daily basis, it’s easy to forget the level of public awareness about the disease.  It’s very low, even among those who deal with the pain and heartache of a suffering loved one.  In the interest of awareness, with April being Alcohol Awareness Month, here are some basics.
 
 
Alcoholics are unable to stop drinking once they start, without a conflict, no matter how much you beg.  The saying goes that if an alcoholic is not drinking, he’s thinking about the next drink.  A big part of alcohol dependence is the intense craving an individual feels.  These feelings are so strong that an alcoholic in recover for 10 years could still find his mouth watering at the sight of a martini or glass of wine.  And it isn’t about the taste.

Alcohol always satisfies the craving, as promised, and is trusted to always do so.  This is due to some biological and psychological functions that need not be addressed here.  And it can’t be stressed enough that alcohol is this individual’s best friend because people can never be as trustworthy.  Alcohol dependence has its drawbacks, of course, like terrible withdrawals.  But they are easily remedied by drinking more alcohol.  So the only downside, to the alcoholic, is the people who nag him to stop drinking.

The “hole in the soul” is a good way to describe why an alcoholic drinks.  It feels like something is missing inside that would help him cope with daily life.  Alcoholics lack a coping mechanism that most people have, so they tend to dwell on little events that seem to not bother others.  Alcohol fills that hole and makes him feel like he is a part of society, rather than being different.  From the first drink on, all is okay as long as the alcoholic is drinking.
Eventually, heavy drinking leads to abuse and then dependence.  At that point the body needs alcohol to function, and cutting off the supply may be fatal.  That’s a sad fact.  

This doesn’t mean that the situation is hopeless.  It’s important, though, to find the right time to have a discussion with your alcoholic.  For some reason, spouses, parents, children, and friends will confront an alcoholic during a binge, knowing that the last attempt was a disaster.  His mind, body, and spirit will always go to defend his best friend, and you get nowhere.  The best thing to do is remain calm until he passes out.

Aside from a professional intervention, the best time to confront an alcoholic is after he sleeps off a negative experience.  Wait until he’s “come to”, and then discuss the behavior.  It’s crucial that you convey a sense of love and care.  The best thing you can do for him is to lead him to the realization that he has a problem.  That realization is known as a “moment of clarity” in recovery groups, and is often described as having a divine influence.
When that moment arrives, you need to immediately… right now …get him in to a treatment center.  Therefore, you need to do your homework before the conversation starts.  It begins with one call to a local treatment center, like the one at Tarzana Treatment Centers, where you can learn how treatment works.  You’ll find out what is needed to get your loved one admitted when the time comes, and will also get some tools to make that day arrive faster.

Successful treatment will lead to abstinence for your alcoholic.  Continued treatment and attending a support group, like AA, will help him stay sober.  The odds are, though, that your alcoholic will relapse after treatment at least once.  It’s just a fact of life and a part of recovery for the great majority of recovering alcoholics.  Ask questions, find out what happened, encourage open communication, and talk to a counselor together.  Get him right back on the horse.

Here is one final note for the loved ones.  You need help, too.  Attend at least one Al-Anon or CODA meeting in your area.  There is no shame in being associated with an alcoholic, and you need to know how to regain your self-worth.  You may even choose to enter therapy, which is also available at Tarzana Treatment Centers.
 
Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides a full array of health care services including adult and youth alcohol and drug treatment.  We specialize in treatment for mental health and substance use disorders, and have two primary medical care clinics in the San Fernando Valley and Antelope Valley and specialized services for HIV/AIDS care.  If you or a loved one needs help with alcohol dependence, drug addiction, or co-occurring mental health disorders or from other services we offer, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us using our secure contact form.
   
Telemedicine services are also available with online medical care, online mental health treatment, and online alcohol and drug treatment.

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.

How to Work with Relapse

by James Heller 11. February 2014 15:16
Relapse is not the end of recovery.  It’s not recommended, either, and those of us who treat for substance use disorders can’t condone the behavior.  Still, it’s more effective to take a positive approach to recovery after a relapse than it is to be angry and condemn the addict.
 
 
Recovery from alcoholism or drug addiction is an ongoing process, and abstinence is not a lifetime guarantee.  Most alcoholics and addicts relapse at least once before achieving long-term abstinence, if they make it.  Even short-term abstinence is a miracle for those who are heavily dependent on alcohol or heroin, for example.
When an individual with more than a few months of recovery relapses, those around them usually find it difficult to accept as being a normal occurrence.  It’s easy to forget how hard it was to get a loved one into treatment when life with them begins to feel “normal”.  The natural reaction for family members is to think they didn’t do enough, so anger and sadness result.

Going back to substance use does not mean an addict has given up, though.  It just means that progress has taken a step backward, meaning that something wasn’t addressed during treatment or coping skills need to be improved.  Both of these can be corrected with further counseling.  From this perspective, a relapse can be seen as a lesson rather than a failure.

Understanding this can reduce the anger among family members, and could hasten the trip back to rehab.  It’s better to lovingly encourage treatment rather than to react and increase pressure on the addict.  Of course the family of an addict needs to make it known that getting back on the road to recovery is the only acceptable outcome.  With a positive attitude, this can be done in a more loving tone that is more-likely to lead the addict in the right direction.
 
Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides a full array of health care services including adult and youth alcohol and drug treatment.  We specialize in treatment for mental health and substance use disorders, and have two primary medical care clinics in the San Fernando Valley and Antelope Valley and specialized services for HIV/AIDS care.  If you or a loved one needs help with alcohol dependencedrug addiction, or co-occurring mental health disorders or from other services we offer, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us using our secure contact form.
 
Telemedicine services are also available with online medical care, online mental health treatment, and online alcohol and drug treatment.

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.

Alcoholism and Addiction May be Home for the Holidays

by James Heller 24. December 2013 09:24
When bright young teens go off to college, every parent hopes it will be the start of a promising future.  The new students experience some anxiety along with a new sense of independence, which can lead to experimenting with alcohol or drugs.  Studies about the facts of college alcohol and drug abuse show that this is a recipe for an early onset of alcoholism and drug addiction, and parents may get a surprise when their babies come home for the holidays.
 
 
The signs are always there.  If alcohol and drug abuse is unacceptable in a family, returning teens will do everything possible to hide it.  When parents are okay with the use of alcohol or drugs, the homecoming may just require a reduction in daily use, so as to not reveal a problem.  So, chances are, if your child came home drinking when they hadn’t before college, what you see them drink may just be a mask to hide the ugliness of bigger problem.

When college students get into the habit of drinking or using drugs to “let off steam” or “take the edge off”, they are learning to self-medicate.  This can be dangerous if alcohol or drugs become a coping mechanism and not just an occasional respite.  When emotions or stressors arise, the option to deal with them will diminish as the option to escape with substances will become more common.  They don’t learn to work through problems and become dependent on the chemical solution at the same time.  

Read more about college alcohol use, its effects, and how to spot trouble at this link:
Parents need to watch for the signs and intervene when they appear.  Lead off with a loving statement that you just want to make sure there isn’t a problem.  Maybe they just need to talk to someone and understand that stress and emotions are natural things to deal with.  If there is indeed is a problem, you may be surprised with a big hug and a plea for help.  In either case, to not bring it up out of fear over a possible confrontation is a big price to pay for the health of your loved one.

Here at Tarzana Treatment Centers we talk to people every day who desperately need alcohol and drug treatment, and others who are just going through stressful times who need a little therapy.  We provide substance use and mental health treatment for all levels of care.  If you are a college student and you are worried about your alcohol or drug use, or have a loved one who is, please call us today.
 
Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides a full array of health care services including adult and youth alcohol and drug treatment.  We specialize in treatment for mental health and substance use disorders, and have two primary medical care clinics in the San Fernando Valley and Antelope Valley and specialized services for HIV/AIDS care.  If you or a loved one needs help with alcohol dependencedrug addiction, or co-occurring mental health disorders or from other services we offer, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us using our secure contact form.
  

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.

Summertime Teen Surveillance

by James Heller 14. June 2013 09:58
At long last, teens have been released from the school for the summer break.  While most of them look forward to the freedom that awaits, most parents need to find ways to keep them busy and in check.  While you can’t imprison them at home for 3 months, it is important that you remain aware of patterns that may indicate alcohol or drug use.
 
 
The last month of a high school year is filled with youth anticipation.  Plans are made between friends, gatherings scheduled, and phone numbers and email addresses are exchanged with acquaintances.  Some adolescents will plan to be very active during the summer months, and others will choose to take it easy.  Either way, parents will be concerned about their welfare at some point.

It’s almost impossible to keep tabs on your household teens all of the time.  They need their freedom, and you have to go to work or a have home to take care of.  There will be a good amount of time that teens are away from you for several hours or even a few days.  Assuming your family has been free from substance use problems, you will probably trust them to not get involved with alcohol or drugs, but you may still worry.
Temptation to get high is everywhere, these days, and teens are very impressionable.  A 14 year old who gets excellent grades and is very active in school activities can get hooked on drugs just the same as dropout.  This is not mentioned to instill fear, but you should be constructively aware of the signs of substance use.  If you ignore the early stages of youth alcohol and drug use, you will open the door to more frequent use and future problems.

Watch for the signs.  Teens that begin using alcohol and drugs will often go through an abrupt change of friends.  They will spend less and less time at home, and sleeping patterns will change.  Conflicts with parents increase.  The “flu” may visit your house more than once in a short period of time.  If you happen to find drugs or paraphernalia in their room, be assured that it does not belong to a friend.

If you still want to avoid a conflict with your teen and think substance use is just a passing phase, remember that most teen injuries and deaths involve substance use.  Talk to them and get them help if they have a problem.
Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides a full array of health care services including adult and youth alcohol and drug treatment.  We specialize in treatment for mental health and substance use disorders, and have two primary medical care clinics in the San Fernando Valley and Antelope Valley and specialized services for HIV/AIDS care.  If you or a loved one needs help with alcohol dependencedrug addiction, or co-occurring mental health disorders or from other services we offer, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us using our secure contact form.

Telemedicine services are also available with online medical care, online mental health treatment, and online alcohol and drug treatment.

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.

Make the Holidays Happy this Year

by James Heller 4. December 2012 15:32
While this time of year brings joy and merriment to most of us, we in the substance use and mental health treatment field are all too familiar with those who find it troublesome.  Conflicts can arise from within, stemming from disorders that make social gatherings terrifying.  Or they can be substance induced, making someone an annoyance or worse at holiday gatherings.  If this was a problem for you or a loved one last year, we would like to suggest that you get help so the holidays can be pleasant going forward.
 
 
Anyone who suffers from mental health or substance use disorders, and their loved ones, are familiar with troubles during the holiday season.  Yet, each year, millions hope that conflicts and heartaches from the past won’t be repeated.  As a general rule, negative behavior gets in the way of the good times once again, every year.  

Mental health disorders can cause individuals to avoid social gatherings, in cases of depression, which can bring loneliness and bitter feelings.  Anxiety, Bi-Polar Disorder, and other conditions can result in tense outbursts or other negative behaviors at gatherings.  Their loved ones might say that they suffer as much, if not more, than the person with the disorder.  Sadness or anger becomes the prevailing emotions of the season for all involved.

Alcohol use is at an annual high due to holiday parties, out of school youths, and the seasonal servings of festive drinks.  The weather is colder, and many feel like they have an excuse to “let loose”.  When alcohol abusers drink more than usual, verbal conflicts, physical fights, and tragic accidents are a higher likelihood.  When alcohol is served at a large holiday gathering, at least one person is bound to be negatively impacted by an alcohol abuser.  And, we’re sorry that it still needs to be said, innocent people die from drunken driving accidents.  Alcohol abuse is in no way “festive”.

It’s the same pattern, year after year, that we see at Tarzana Treatment Centers.  Admissions for substance use and mental health drop as the holiday season approaches.  Then they rise somewhat sharply as the New Year begins, after the spotlight has been shown on individuals and their disorders. Most of them had considered entering treatment before the holidays, but put it off so they could enjoy them, as they say.

Whether the problems of last year were mild or severe, we suggest that you or your loved one speaks with a counselor before the first holiday gathering.  This is especially a good idea if problems have occurred more than once with an individual.  You deserve better.  Something as simple as a Vivitrol injection to reduce alcohol cravings may be the remedy.  It will help you to begin the process of healing, and you can become a part of the crowd that will enjoy a happy holiday season this year.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides a full array of health care services including adult and youth alcohol and drug treatment.  We specialize in treatment for mental health and substance use disorders, and have two primary medical care clinics in the San Fernando Valley and Antelope Valley and specialized services for HIV/AIDS care.  If you or a loved one needs help with alcohol dependencedrug addiction, or co-occurring mental health disorders or from other services we offer, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us using our secure contact form.

Telemedicine services are also available with online medical care, online mental health treatment, and online alcohol and drug treatment.

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.

Caring for Children of Mothers in Early Recovery

by James Heller 11. September 2012 08:08
Early recovery from alcoholism and drug addiction is difficult for mothers with small children and infants, especially single mothers in lower income households. You can’t focus on your recovery while taking care of a child, and may not be able to afford the child care that would provide you with the necessary quiet time. When child care and Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) are a part of treatment in early recovery, though, your chances of achieving long-term sobriety are much better.

Tarzana Treatment Centers provides alcohol and drug treatment services for women with children.  We have two facilities in Long Beach and Tarzana where mothers can get the treatment they need, with child day care available.  Vivitrol treatment is also available for eligible patients being treated for alcoholism and opiate addiction.
 
 
When individuals begin a life of sobriety, everything changes.  Routines need to change, diets, friends, and even family relationships.  These aren’t all big changes, necessarily.  But they all require a certain amount of focus, and that means that daily “alone time” is needed.  Any single mother can tell you that this is nearly impossible without an outside hand, which is not always available.  Unfortunately, this means that many single mothers relapse early in recovery and often give up on the hope for a sober life.

Some would say that if these moms would put their children in child care, treatment would work better for them.  But even if the mother can afford child day care, she needs to rebuild broken bonds.  That’s difficult to do when there is a physical separation.  So it is a great benefit when mom and child can experience treatment together.  At Tarzana Treatment Centers our goal is to provide a temporary home for them.  In some cases, it is the best environment that the child has ever experienced.

Alcohol cravings and opiate cravings are major relapse triggers, and require a great deal of strength and motivation to overcome.  These cravings can get in the way of bonding efforts between mothers in recovery and their children.  For those who are eligible, Vivitrol is an alcohol and opiate craving reduction medication that Tarzana Treatment Centers provides after medical detoxification.  With cravings out of the way, mom can focus more on her recovery and relationship with her children.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides a full array of health care services including adult and youth alcohol and drug treatment.  We specialize in treatment for mental health and substance use disorders, and have two primary medical care clinics in the San Fernando Valley and Antelope Valley and specialized services for HIV/AIDS care.  If you or a loved one needs help with alcohol dependencedrug addiction, or co-occurring mental health disorders or from other services we offer, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us using our secure contact form.

Telemedicine services are also available with online medical care, online mental health treatment, and online alcohol and drug treatment.

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.

If Doctors Would Diagnose Addiction

by James Heller 5. September 2012 14:10
If you consider that there are an estimated 22 million Americans with a drug or alcohol problem, you might assume that doctors regularly diagnose and treat them.  Reality is, though, that most doctors have never been trained to in addiction treatment, and usually treat only the symptoms of the disease.  Fortunately, some new treatments involving medications may change this sad situation.
 
 
One big problem with alcoholism and drug addiction is that so many medical problems result from them.  Substance abuse negatively affects different parts of the body, depending on the drug being used.  Alcohol abuse, without exaggeration, harms every cell in the body.  To the untrained in addiction medicine, the symptoms of these abuses might appear as primary problems, only requiring common treatments.  For example, a doctor may prescribe specialized medication for a bleeding ulcer and schedule a follow-up visit.

Another problem with addiction is that alcoholics and drug addicts are not quick to admit their problems.  Even if a doctor asks about drinking and drug use habits, these patients will minimize or deny it.  Short of the patient arriving at 9:00am and smelling of alcohol, or having injection track marks up and down their arms, untrained doctors will not see a reason to investigate.  The answer is often accepted as true and the doctor looks to heal the symptom.  

The result is that alcoholics and drug addicts get temporary relief from negative symptoms of their disease, but don’t receive, at the very least, guidance from their doctors on how to prevent them in the future.  The worst result is that people die every day from the negative effects of alcoholism and drug addiction.  Most of them could have been saved had they been given early treatment for the primary disease of addiction.

According to this article, there is possible good news on the horizon.  There is an effort to attract doctors to the addiction treatment field, and to promote addiction medicine as a recognized subspecialty.  Medical treatment and new prescription drugs are proving to be effective means of helping addicts to recover.  Counseling for the psycho-social aspects of the disease is still important, but detox and craving reduction medications, like Vivitrol, have become very beneficial in the early days of recovery.

Tarzana Treatment Centers provides Vivitrol treatment for alcohol and opiate craving reduction, for example.  This follows medical detoxification, which is important to avoid the severe effects of withdrawals.  We have seen some great success stories from patients who previously struggled with relapse after their first Vivitrol injection.  

Imagine if doctors could diagnose addiction from the symptoms they normally treat.  They could make a referral to a detox facility, followed with Vivitrol for eligible patients, and maybe residential or outpatient treatment.  Patients tend to listen to doctors more than they would even to their most beloved family members.  Hopefully, the effort mentioned above can spread so more of those who suffer can get the treatment they need.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides a full array of health care services including adult and youth alcohol and drug treatment.  We specialize in treatment for mental health and substance use disorders, and have two primary medical care clinics in the San Fernando Valley and Antelope Valley and specialized services for HIV/AIDS care.  If you or a loved one needs help with alcohol dependencedrug addiction, or co-occurring mental health disorders or from other services we offer, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us using our secure contact form.

Telemedicine services are also available with online medical care, online mental health treatment, and online alcohol and drug treatment.

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.

Youth and Family Services at Tarzana Treatment Centers

by James Heller 3. August 2012 07:11
When the health of family members is a concern, you want to trust their health care only to quality providers.  This is especially true for children and seniors.  It is also helpful if all of your health care providers are at one location.

Tarzana Treatment Centers provides many of the services you need to maintain good physical and mental health.  We also contract with several public funding sources so we can provide these services to anyone who needs them.  
 
 
Starting with our medical care clinics, physicians can attend to your physical health care needs in a clean and comfortable setting.  If you suffer from a mental health disorder, our licensed professionals are available for therapy.  Alcohol and drug addiction treatment is also available, including medical detoxification and Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT).  For individuals who are HIV positive, our well-renowned HIV Services can help manage your special needs.

Growing up can be difficult.  Our Youth Services staff specializes in treating teen alcohol and drug abuse, as well as adolescent mental health issues.  These problems can tear the family apart, so our youth programs are built to repair the bonds that have been broken.  Family members learn to accept one-another and work together, which strikes at the core of substance use disorders.  

We provide senior health services covered by Medicare and Medicare Advantage.  Along with medical care, mental health treatment and substance abuse treatment services are available.  These issues often go ignored by family members and seniors suffer needlessly.  We will provide services ranging from short-term therapy to residential treatment.

Tarzana Treatment Centers accepts Medi-Cal, Healthy Way LA (HWLA), and a few other forms of public funding for health care services.  You can call to find out if you are covered.  If you are not currently enrolled in a program, we can help you to apply.  We also accept most forms of private insurance, and private payment on a sliding scale based on your ability to pay.

Please call today.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides a full array of health care services including adult and youth alcohol and drug treatment.  We specialize in treatment for mental health and substance use disorders, and have two primary medical care clinics in the San Fernando Valley and Antelope Valley and specialized services for HIV/AIDS care.  If you or a loved one needs help with alcohol dependencedrug addiction, or co-occurring mental health disorders or from other services we offer, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us using our secure contact form.

Telemedicine services are also available with online medical care, online mental health treatment, and online alcohol and drug treatment.

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.

Medicare Covers Alcohol and Drug Treatment

by James Heller 11. June 2012 15:01
Medicare covers much more than basic medical care, which is probably not a big surprise to anyone.  What may be news is that mental health treatment and alcohol and drug treatment are covered.  This is important to know because an increasing number of seniors are in need of these services, and Tarzana Treatment Centers provides all of them.

Senior alcohol and drug abuse can begin with anxiety, depression, physical pain, and even social factors like loneliness or boredom.  One may begin drinking earlier in the day, which can progress until cocktail hour is at 9am.  Another individual may be prescribed painkillers or anxiety medication, like Vicodin or Xanax, and become addicted because negative feelings don’t feel so bad with them.  These are just two examples of how senior substance abuse can start.  

Addiction survivors are entering their senior years, and many of them are going back to alcohol and other drugs.  The substance use may not be very different from past senior generations, but the stigma of being drunk or high is not as prevalent with the Baby Boomers.  On one hand, this means that recreational drugs, like cocaine and crystal meth, are sometimes abused.  And on the other hand, family members might feel at ease discussing the need for alcohol or drug detox with this group.

Tarzana Treatment Centers provides addiction and mental health treatment under Medicare coverage. We know what other problems to look for when addiction is presented as a primary problem with seniors.  And we can usually treat all of them under one roof.  We want to help make the golden years special and not filled with problems.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides a full array of health care services including adult and youth alcohol and drug treatment.  We specialize in treatment for mental health and substance use disorders, and have two primary medical care clinics in the San Fernando Valley and Antelope Valley.  If you or a loved one needs help with alcohol dependencedrug addiction, or co-occurring mental health disorders, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us here.

Telemedicine services are also available with online medical care, online mental health treatment, and online alcohol and drug treatment.

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.

Telemedicine Uses – Alcohol Treatment

by James Heller 2. September 2010 14:00
Individuals from all social and economic levels can suffer from alcohol dependence.  When they know they need treatment, some of them can’t access it either because they don’t have time or worry about the social stigma of being an alcoholic.  Recovery may be the only thing that saves their family, job, or finances, though, so they should consider telemedicine as an option.

The homeless people you see on the street are only the public face of alcoholism.  One may work in the office or cubicle next to you, or even live in your own home.  It is estimated that over 1 in 10 Americans suffer today.  No matter who they are, at some time, hopefully, they realize that they need alcohol treatment.  Sadly, many will postpone or decline this addiction treatment for several reasons.

Entering alcohol treatment is still wrongly stigmatized as a weakness for a large segment of society.  Individuals in positions of authority and possibly well known, in business and politics, very often place public status over their own health, and think they will be okay without treatment.  But for every one individual who seems to be “living a party” and still making a living in the news, there are thousands who will lose everything.  

Successful alcohol treatment does require a time commitment from patients and their loved ones.  The patient needs to attend individual and group sessions to work through life issues that will prevent relapse.  Family and friends need to also attend groups to work on themselves as well as to provide support for the patient.  The resistance is not so much about attending the sessions, but more about the travel time and coordination of schedules that makes people nervous.  When one knows they need treatment, they should get it.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides telemedicine for individuals who have these reasons, and many others, to not seek alcohol treatment.  Sessions are conducted by video conference over the browser-based TherapyLiveVisit application, powered by MDLiveCare.  Participants in telemedicine only need a computer with a webcam and internet connection.  All sessions are secure and confidential, running behind several layers of encryption.

These individuals who need help with alcohol abuse or dependence can now get it before problems mount too high.  Eliminating regular trips to an alcohol treatment center solves the stigma and time issues.  There is no need to explain sudden regular “nights out” to those who may pry, and all sessions can be conducted at home or work.  Travel time is eliminated, along with the hassle of loading the family in a car.  Also, distant family members can participate in family sessions, which is a great benefit.

Telemedicine at Tarzana Treatment Centers is not limited to addiction treatment.  We also provide online mental health treatment and online medical care.  Our goal is to see that those who need treatment can get it.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides a full array of health care services including adult and youth alcohol and drug treatment.  We specialize in treatment for mental health and substance use disorders, and have two primary medical care clinics in the San Fernando Valley and Antelope Valley.  If you or a loved one needs help with alcohol dependence, drug addiction, or co-occurring mental health disorders, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us here.

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.