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Adolescent Drug Addiction – Don’t Discriminate

by James Heller 5. May 2010 12:37
Teen drug addiction does not only occur with drugs like heroin and methamphetamines.  Prescription opiate and benzodiazepine abuse can quickly lead to addiction, and we should not forget about marijuana and alcohol which are still drugs.  Parents need to be aware of these facts so they can easily spot the signs of impending drug addiction with their youth.

Don’t be fooled by the idea that if you don’t catch your adolescent using strong drugs, then it is not a big deal.  Granted, finding evidence of heroin or methamphetamine use can scare any parent into contacting the closest drug treatment center.  Too many parents, though, do not take the same drastic action with other drugs, and may simply resort to grounding or other minor punishments.

Alcohol and marijuana are the best examples.  Many parents still believe it is okay to allow teen alcohol use in the home, in hopes that they will not drink outside the home.  In most cases they will and put themselves at risk of injury and death.  Adolescents, in most cases, simply don’t drink responsibly like adults.  Getting a buzz is the purpose as opposed to having a social moment with friends.

The 21st Century has seen an equalizing with alcohol of the social acceptance of marijuana.  The drug has become normalized with such a high percentage of the population having smoked pot in younger days.  If marijuana use caused them no major problems, parents may allow their teens to use it or just wave it off as typical youth behavior.   What they don’t know is that marijuana is now much more potent and addictive, and can also lead to injury or death if they drive under the influence of pot.

Now prescription drugs like Hydrocodone (Vicodin), Oxycodone (Oxycontin), and benzodiazepines (Xanax and Valium) have become popular with adolescents.  Adolescent prescription drug abuse is largely driven by a low perception of risk.  Teens believe there is no danger that comes with the high, as long as they take the drugs in controlled situations.  But drug addiction can take hold quickly with these drugs, which can lead them to try heroin addiction since it is cheaper and more potent.

Drug addiction treatment usually begins with drug detox or alcohol detoxDrug withdrawal symptoms include flu-like aches and intestinal problems among others, and alcohol withdrawal can be fatal in serious cases.  It is best to avoid the need for medical detoxification before teen drug treatment.  The way to do this is to treat all teen drug abuse equally, and seek treatment at the earliest signs of use.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides youth alcohol and drug treatment, as well as prevention education.  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.

Primary Health Care in Los Angeles

by James Heller 28. April 2010 13:18
Getting medical health care can be a problem for several reasons.  Cost, location, and lack of insurance are all reasons that individuals postpone or neglect health care.  Some may not want to get treatment from their regular physician for some ailments, as well.  The primary medical care clinics at Tarzana Treatment Centers can help in any of these situations.

We have two medical care clinics located in the San Fernando Valley (Northridge) and in the Antelope Valley (Lancaster).  At each clinic we provide health care services to the communities that are affordable and local.  Whether you need drug testing for your employees, treatment for HIV and other STDs, or injury and illness treatments, we can help.

The care we provide is confidential, caring, and convenient.  Our health care services also ensure a continuum of care to our patients in alcohol and drug treatment.  We also staff medical professionals with years of experience with HIV at our clinics to treat individuals utilizing our HIV services.

For more information, please click the link below to view our flyer:


Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides primary medical care at our clinics.  We specialize in treatment for mental health and substance use disorders.  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.

Teen Substance Use - Prevention and Treatment

by James Heller 22. April 2010 13:50
It’s no secret that a certain percentage of teens will recreationally use alcohol or drugs before they finish high school.  We would all like to wave a magic wand and put a stop to it, but that is just a dream.  We can only do our best to teach adolescents the damage that alcohol abuse and drug abuse will cause in their lives.

Sometimes it seems like a futile effort.  Some of our youth will engage in substance use no matter what they are taught, or even if they face legal and academic consequences.  Many of them begin using out of curiosity or peer pressure, and others do so in order to escape negative feelings.  Some are even undiagnosed with mental health disorders, and find comfort in self-medicating.

The consequences of teen alcohol and drug abuse are evident to anyone whose primary work is in service to adolescents.  At schools, we see promising students suddenly miss homework assignments or watch grades drop on tests.  Youth organizations and similar groups notice that some kids just stop attending meetings and functions.

Sadly, there is no magic wand that will put an end to adolescent substance abuse.  Prevention is an effort that must continue, though, because teens will otherwise not hear our message of consequences.  They will be left only with reasons to try alcohol and drugs, and none make them think first about future problems.  Although it may seem like a lost cause, at times, lives are saved every day.

In times of doubt, remember that when teens engage in alcohol abuse or drug abuse they increase the likelihood of future problems with alcohol dependence or drug addiction.  Each and every adolescent that hears this message gets the opportunity to live into adulthood alcohol and drug free.  At the very least, we can attempt to delay the start of substance use until after adolescence.

It is also important that we know when to refer teens to youth alcohol and drug treatment.  There is often a delay because of the mistaken parallel between adolescent substance abuse and adult substance abuse.  In actuality, teens need to at least speak with an addiction counselor at the first sign of abuse so the true nature of the problem can be understood in each case.

Adolescent alcohol and drug treatment helps teens to discover why they use alcohol or drugs.  This allows them to grow by dealing with life problems instead of escaping with substance use.  When mental health disorders are discovered, the treatment center should include in-house care for co-occurring mental health disorders.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides youth alcohol and drug treatment, as well as prevention education.  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.

Substance Use and Aging

by James Heller 21. April 2010 10:17
Dr. Jose Salazar, Director of Program Development at Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles has written an article about substance abuse among older adults for Aging Today.  This is a great source for those wanting information about how the elderly fall into alcoholism or drug addiction over life issues, and the treatment they need.  With a growing population of aging adults, it helps everyone to be aware of possible alcohol abuse and drug abuse issues they will face.

Read the full article at this link:
http://www.agingtoday.org/at/at-311/pdfs/ATv31n1_Salazar.pdf

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides culturally sensitive alcohol and drug treatment to older adults.  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.

Technology in Alcohol and Drug Treatment - Digital Signatures

by James Heller 21. April 2010 07:50
After years of suffering, and finally making the decision to enter alcohol and drug treatment, the last thing alcoholics and drug addicts want to do is wait.  Forms need to be completed, printed and signed, and all of that paper used can’t be good for the environment.  Digital signatures address both of these issues.

When alcohol and drug treatment centers stay current with technology in health care, the main goal is to improve patient outcomes.  Any new technology aims to provide better security, efficiency in treatment, and the ability to store and share information between staff professionals.  But even with efficient systems in place, paperwork can seem overwhelming to patients being admitted to treatment.

Many individuals entering alcohol and drug treatment require medical detoxification to minimize withdrawals.  The decision to enter treatment may have taken months, partially out of fear over alcohol, heroin, or prescription drug withdrawals.  Once they enter the doors of a facility, with no access to their drugs of choice, that fear makes every minute seem like an hour.

Suddenly, they are faced with a stack of paperwork that needs to be read and signed.  Before they are halfway through the stack, physical signs of withdrawal may begin to appear.  No matter how quickly an admissions counselor wants to proceed, this work needs to be done to ensure patient security and proper treatment.

Paper use is a problem in this process, as well.  If two professionals need to see a form at the same time, it means that copies need to be made.  Most of those copies are shredded after use.  Digital creation and storage of many forms minimizes waste, but there are still some that need patient signatures.  This still means that paper is printed, copied and shredded over and over again.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles has addressed this issue by incorporating digital signature capturing into the admissions and counseling process.  Patients can now proceed through the admissions process without waiting for forms to print.  They can simply sign them using a digital signature pad during the admission interview process, effectively cutting the admission time in half.

When patients complete the admissions process, they are walked into a treatment unit with minimal paperwork.  This not only saves paperwork, but also provides better security for patients.  This is because their detailed information is only available on a secure network computer, accessible only to treatment staff.  It also means that two professionals can look at the same information simultaneously, without needing to make copies.

Our goal is to be completely paperless as a health care organization.  The ability to capture digital signatures provided a bridge over a big chasm that prevented us from reaching that goal.  This took some time to accomplish, but it was worth it considering that we made great leaps toward two of our goals.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles uses the latest technology to provide effective 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.

Medication Assisted Treatment Options

by James Heller 12. April 2010 14:07

Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) is a safe and effective method for alcohol and narcotic withdrawal and maintenance.  There is ample evidence suggesting that harm reduction strategies should be more widely available to those suffering from alcohol dependence and drug addictionTarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles has taken note of these facts, and offers several medication assisted treatment options.

Traditional alcohol and drug treatment services help many individuals to begin a life in recovery and improve their lives.  MAT is utilized in medical detoxification at the start of treatment to minimize withdrawal symptoms from alcohol and other drugs.  This process is important since patients must be medically stable before beginning the process of recovery.

For some, though, relapse commonly follows traditional treatment.  This is generally due to alcohol cravings and opiate cravings that vary greatly from patient to patient.  Medications like Suboxone, Vivitrol, and Methadone help to minimize cravings so these individuals may begin the process of recovery, medically stable and in a receptive state of mind.

For more information, click the link below:


Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles offers many medication assisted treatment options.  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.

For more information on Vivitrol, contact us via email at vivitrol@tarzanatc.org.

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.

Multi-Cultural Health Month

by James Heller 9. April 2010 13:51

California has designated the month of April as Multi-Cultural Health Month.  The focus for 2010 is on heart disease in men, the number one killer in the state.  Alcoholism and drug addiction can lead to heart disease in those who suffer.  Since the disease of addiction crosses cultural boundaries, Tarzana Treatment Centers is happy to participate in bringing awareness to the public about multi-cultural health care.

Any discussion about multi-cultural issues can be extended to include what are known as subcultures.  A subculture can be any group that shares concerns, values, traditions, and other areas of interest.  Effective alcohol and drug treatment requires knowledge of and specialization for certain subcultures because, even though addiction is the same for everyone, leading individuals to recovery requires empathy.

Focusing on subcultures is not about pigeonholing individuals.  The point is to be aware of cultural beliefs that come from being a part of a subculture, and to treat patients with sensitivity to those beliefs.  This helps to keep patients in treatment when relapse interventions are needed, and connects existing positive beliefs with the benefits of long-term recovery.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles focuses on cultural sensitivity among staff in many ways.  Even though we only hire direct patient staff that has completed courses in treating patients from subcultures, we provide staff trainings on the subject.  There are rarely any language barriers, as well, since we have many staff members who speak various foreign languages.  Best of all, we provide specialized services for some cultures and subcultures.

Our highly regarded HIV services program has evolved over the past two decades.  The needs of gay and transgender patients in HIV treatment require special focus, especially when alcohol dependence or drug addiction is a factor.  Because of this, both staff and other patients attend education groups so HIV positive patients can feel comfortable and their privacy remains intact.

We also have a Native American alcohol and drug treatment track that brings culture and tradition into treatment.  Native American men still suffer a high incidence of alcoholism, which is often responsible for heart disease.  The program includes traditional sweat lodge ceremonies and in-house Wellbriety groups.

Other individuals who may require special attention are undocumented persons, women with children, veterans with mental health needs, those with hepatitis C or Sexually Transmitted Diseases, and senior citizens.  There are too many subcultures in America for anyone to relate to them all.  But since our staff is so culturally diverse, it is likely that all subcultures can feel comfortable with us.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides all of the services listed above and more.  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.

Integrated Behavioral Healthcare - Detailed Brochure

by James Heller 9. November 2009 13:55
Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides integrated behavioral healthcare in alcohol and drug treatment.  This means that we provide a variety of services for those suffering from alcohol dependence or drug addiction that you would not find at most facilities.  

If you know you need help with alcoholism or drug addiction, and have delayed seeking treatment because of other health factors, call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us here.

For detailed information about our integrated behavioral healthcare services, please click the link below to view our brochure.


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.

National Children's Mental Health Awareness Day

by James Heller 7. May 2009 10:26
May 7th, 2009 is National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day

It is difficult for a parent to know whether or not youth behavior problems stem from a mental health disorder.  When this question arises it is a good idea to start with a psychological assessment, especially if the problems are new and sudden.  After all, if it makes sense to take a child to the doctor for a cough, the same should be true for possible mental health issues.

Most of the time, when a child displays negative behavior, the last thing a parent wants to think about is that a possible mental health issue is responsible.  Fear and stigma usually delay seeking help for behavioral problems.  So, in general, mental health treatment comes after the child’s behavior has caused family problems or even alcohol or drug abuse.

Tarzana Treatment Centers provides specialized youth mental health treatment, as well as adolescent alcohol and drug treatment, at our youth treatment facility.  Our integrated behavioral healthcare provides mental health treatment for youth with and without alcohol or drug abuse issues.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration provides detailed information on the subject of children’s mental health.  The following explains the focus of the 2009 Awareness Day.

-- Begin external content --

National Children's Mental Health Awareness Day (Awareness Day) is a day for everyone to promote positive youth development, resilience, recovery, and the transformation of mental health services delivery for children and youth with serious mental health needs and their families. Awareness Day raises awareness of effective programs for children's mental health needs; demonstrates how children's mental health initiatives promote positive youth development, recovery, and resilience; and shows how children with mental health needs thrive in their communities.

The theme for this year's national event is Thriving in the Community, with a special emphasis on how high school youth who receive the services they need are more likely to have positive outcomes, such as better grades, and less likely to have negative outcomes, such as involvement with the juvenile and criminal justice systems.

-- Source: http://www.samhsa.gov/children/index.aspx --

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles makes a daily effort to find treatment news articles that we can share with our readers in the alcohol and drug treatment community.  The external content was found among other articles of equal informational and educational quality.

Adolescents With Co-occurring Disorders

by James Heller 6. May 2009 14:21
May, 2009 is National Mental Health Month.  

Tarzana Treatment Centers is participating with a series of articles meant to inform and educate the general public about mental health issues as related to substance abuse, dependence and alcohol and drug treatment.  A growing percentage of alcohol and drug treatment admissions include co-occurring mental health disorders.  Special care is needed to ensure recovery for these patients, as is provided at Tarzana Treatment Centers.

Adolescents with co-occurring substance abuse and mental health disorders have an opportunity to live normal lives in recovery if they seek treatment.  But parents must first know when alcohol or drug treatment is needed and where to get it.  Tarzana Treatment Centers specializes in alcohol and drug treatment, along with integrated behavioral healthcare to treat co-occurring mental health disorders.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration provides some good information on when a teen is more likely to be using alcohol or drugs.  Below is a section of an informative report that can be helpful for parents of adolescents with behavioral issues.  The full report is more detailed.

-- Begin external content --

Emotional Problems and Alcohol or Illicit Drug Dependence

The severity of emotional problems is associated with increased likelihood of adolescent alcohol or illicit drug dependence. Adolescents with significant emotional problems were nearly four times as likely to report dependence as were those with low emotional problem scores. Alcohol or illicit drug dependence was reported by approximately 3 percent of adolescents with low emotional problem scores, by 7 percent of those with intermediate problem scores, and by 13 percent with significant emotional problems. Within specific age groups, the prevalence of dependence was consistently higher for adolescents with more serious emotional problems, with the exception of adolescent males aged 12 to 13. Older adolescents with serious emotional problems had the highest rates of dependence on alcohol or illicit drugs: 23 percent for males 19 percent for females. The corresponding rates for younger adolescents aged 12 to 13 were 3 percent for males and 9 percent for females.

Behavioral Problems and Alcohol or Illicit Drug Dependence

The severity of behavioral problems is associated with increased likelihood of alcohol or illicit drug dependence. Adolescents with significant behavioral problems were over seven times more likely to report dependence than those with low behavioral problem scores. Alcohol or illicit drug dependence was reported by approximately 2 percent of adolescents with low behavioral problem scores, by 6 percent of those with intermediate problem scores, and by 17 percent of those with significant behavioral problems.

Within specific age groups, dependence increased with the severity of behavioral problems. This pattern was observed among both males and females for very young adolescents aged 12 to 13, for adolescents aged 14 to 15, and for older adolescents aged 16 to 17. Dependence on alcohol or illicit drugs was highest among older adolescents aged 16 to 17 with serious behavioral problems (26 percent). The corresponding rates for very young adolescents aged 12 to 13 were 4 percent for males and 9 percent for females.

-- Source: http://www.oas.samhsa.gov/NHSDA/A-9/comorb3c-38.htm --

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles makes a daily effort to find treatment news articles that we can share with our readers in the alcohol and drug treatment community.  The external content was found among other articles of equal informational and educational quality.