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Meth Addiction is Trouble for Women

by James Heller 20. February 2014 11:30
Crystal meth has different effects on the lives of women versus men.  Aside from the physical damage it deals to the female body, there is a higher risk of mental trauma due to the behaviors that go along with meth use.  This makes it all the more important to educate youths before they get hooked, and to provide mental health treatment along with addiction treatment if they do.
 
 
We’ve all seen the disturbing before and after photos on the internet.  You would think those, on their own, would prevent young women from even associating with meth users.  But youth carries with it a feeling of invincibility and a “that won’t happen to me” attitude, which sadly turns the images into a joke among friends.  The outcome isn’t funny for the women in the pictures.

A more immediate consequence of meth use for women is what can happen to them in the midst of other users.  Instances of rape, serious injury, and death are higher than normal when a group of individuals use meth together.  The drug relieves users of inhibitions, making them feel like rules of good conduct don’t apply to them.  Couple that with feeling stronger and more agile, with a threshold for pain that is through the roof, and you have a game of tragedy roulette.
Maybe the knowledge that their security can go to zero at any second on meth, may just keep them from using even once.

If she survives time as an addict and hasn’t permanently damaged reproductive organs, brain tissue, her heart, liver, or lungs, a woman will have likely been traumatized at least once.  Many of them won’t even see forced sex as a past trauma, at first, seeing it only as a part of the lifestyle.  But as the addicted brain begins to recover and emotions rise to the surface, those and similar events can drastically inhibit recovery and may lead to a relapse.

At Tarzana Treatment Centers, we recognize these critical differences in how women respond to drug treatment.  Our women only programs utilize trauma-informed and gender-specific counseling techniques to improve treatment outcomes.  Eligible women can enter residential treatment with small children, allowing those important bonds to be strengthened.
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.

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.

Valley Tele-Treatment Program (VTP)

by James Heller 26. February 2013 15:10
 
by Charles Yeh, MSW, ASW, CADC II, Project Coordinator
 
The Valley Tele-Treatment Program (VTP) of Tarzana Treatment Centers utilizes tele-communications (phone, e-mail, and video-conferencing) to assess for substance abuse issues, and provide immediate individual counseling if appropriate.  By making access easier and more comfortable, and by combining the role of brief intervention with treatment, VTP can better help individuals at crucial moments concerning the risks and harm related to substance use.  Participation may be as brief as one telephone conversation, or extend up to six months, depending on each individuals need.  
 
A first goal of VTP is to reach more individuals, and to reach them sooner, to provide individualized prevention and early intervention for alcohol and substance use before consequences become severe, or individuals become dependent on alcohol or other drugs.  Because it is not necessary for individuals to travel to our facility in person, the initial apprehension individuals may feel about speaking with a certified alcohol & drug counselor is greatly reduced.  A second goal of VTP is to make treatment more accessible for individuals at all levels of substance use severity.  Not only does VTP allow individuals experiencing physical or transportation barriers to more easily access treatment, the flexibility of the program offers broad effectiveness for treatment:

  1. Low risk for harm—VTP offers a safe and confidential way to explore present issues and help to access the options available for help
  2. Moderate risk for harm—VTP offers counseling to help build coping skills, and to facilitate participation in an ongoing supportive community for recovery
  3. Severe risk for harm—VTP offers interim counseling to help maintain motivation and commitment to recovery when individuals are still waiting to receive residential or onsite outpatient treatment
  4. Already in recovery—VTP offers continuing support to individuals going through a difficult transition
 
VTP services are available in English and Spanish, and are no cost for qualifying individuals.  If you would like to access services, refer someone, or learn more about VTP, please call (818) 654-3821, or email vtp@tarzanatc.org.
 
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.

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.

CalWORKs Covers Alcohol and Drug Detox

by James Heller 8. June 2012 08:45
When family life is disrupted by alcohol and drug use, the entire household suffers.  Substance abuse leads to financial, legal, and relationship problems.  If these problems become unmanageable for families in California, CalWORKs is available to help them get back on their feet.  This program includes benefits to help people stop abusing alcohol and drugs, including payment for medical detoxification.

Tarzana Treatment Centers provides these services for CalWORKs.  The admission process is simple if you already receive CalWORKs benefits, and we can help you enroll if you don’t.  During the detox program, our addiction counselors and other staff will help you to plan your aftercare options.  You will discover what keeps you in the cycle of substance use, and learn how to repair your family.

Our goal is to help you find that clean and sober life you dream of.  The first step is to call us and start the admission process.  There is no reason to delay your recovery.

One of the greatest rewards is to see families heal, knowing that the children have a better life ahead of them.

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 – Drug Addiction

by James Heller 17. September 2010 12:53
There are several reasons that individuals will delay or decline treatment for drug addiction, both legitimate and illegitimate.  Some want drug treatment and don’t have time, and others are simply resisting the urgings of family members with excuses.  Telemedicine could be the solution for many who want drug treatment for themselves or for loved ones.

The trouble starts with the first use of a drug, whether it is marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamine, prescription drugs, or heroin.  Future drug addicts feel a sense of freedom at that time that leads them to further use.  Drug tolerance creates a need for larger doses, more often, to get that first feeling again.  When drug abuse leads to relationship, family, and employment problems, some individuals will seek treatment.  Others will continue use into addiction whether or not they think they need drug treatment.

For those who accept that they need treatment, life factors may inhibit their ability to attend individual and group sessions.  Time, travel, and the stigma of being discovered as a drug addict are the major issues.  The other group who doesn’t want or think they need treatment will make excuses of the same nature, but only to avoid the issue.  

The last couple of days in drug detox can be tense for individuals who want to continue treatment, but see obstacles as mentioned above.  They usually have no sick or vacation time accrued to take time off of work for residential treatment, so they will look into outpatient treatment.  Then family members often object to the time away from home to attend sessions.  After all, it is now time to stop neglecting the family.

Interestingly enough, the debaters on these issues switch sides when a drug addict is resisting drug treatment.  Family members tend to urge them to get intensive residential treatment and take all the time they need.  Employers may mandate drug treatment, and even pay for it depending on the importance of the employee to the company.  

With these time factors in mind, telemedicine is a good solution for the first group and for family members and employers of the second group.  Travel time is eliminated from regular weekly sessions, saving patients and family members several hours each week in many cases.  Sessions can be attended from work or home by video conference, using a computer with a webcam and internet connection.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides telemedicine for drug addiction.  Our online drug treatment is delivered using the LiveVisit application, powered by MDLiveCare, over any web browser.  This makes treatment convenient, accessible, and affordable.  Security is important in drug treatment, so LiveVisit runs behind several layers of encryption.

Telemedicine at Tarzana Treatment Centers is not limited to drug 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.

Telehealth Technology Provides Security and Simplicity

by James Heller 9. September 2010 13:21
Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides telemedicine services to qualified patients in alcohol and drug treatment, mental health treatment, and primary medical care.  After careful research of the technology available, we chose to partner with MDLiveCare in Florida so we could deliver services conveniently and securely at affordable rates.  The technology was a key in making our decision considering what our patients would need in order to use these services.

During our research of available telehealth technologies for video conference sessions, we were happy to discover that most of our services could be delivered through this medium.  Assessments of new patients entering addiction treatment or mental health treatment can be completed before they come to one of our locations.  This allows our staff to better prepare for their arrival, and saves patients critical time in on-site admissions time.  It can also be used for outpatient services for some patients.  We can also see qualified patients in primary medical care from their homes and offices.  

The MDLiveCare technology is browser-based.  This means that patients simply need to open Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, or whatever they use on a daily basis, and log in to their account.  Once logged in, a simple interface makes it easy for them to schedule appointments with Providers, send and read secure messages with them, and view records.  Anyone who browses the internet should be able to use the interfaces we provide, known as MDLiveVisit and TherapyLiveVisit.

Much of the technology used for telehealth video conferencing today would be considered complicated by the everyday computer user.  Some require special software that, putting it simply, directly connects one specific computer with another over long distances.  This adds work for the patient in setting up the software, which may not go well and lead to a need for technical support.  Also, if the program crashes there is no backup means to connect to a session, creating a delay in services.  These are issues that patients do not want to deal with when they need health care.

The MDLiveVisit and TherapyLiveVisit interfaces that are used by Tarzana Treatment Centers require no initial setup on patient computers.  They only need a login ID and temporary password to get started.  Literally within minutes, patients can set an appointment to see one of our health care providers.  And, if the browser they are using happens to crash, they can switch to another to start or resume a session.  All of this simplicity is delivered with the same or better security as those described above.

The LiveVisit application was started using the popular Flash Player to deliver video.  This meant that almost anyone already had the software needed to send and receive video before they used LiveVisit.  To improve services, a switch was made to using the VSee video format in LiveVisit.  The new format uses less bandwidth, meaning that even patients with very slow internet access can send and receive smooth video.  Patients still do not need to install bulky software to use this advanced video format.

We chose to partner with MDLiveCare and use the LiveVisit telehealth applications because the simplicity and security satisfied our high standards in delivering services to patients.  The goal was to make getting treatment easier for patients, with almost no chance that problems will occur.  No special equipment is needed, either, other than an inexpensive webcam since high resolution is not necessary in LiveVisit.

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.

Now Providing Online Treatment 24/7

by James Heller 24. June 2010 10:08
Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles has taken pride in our efforts to remain current with health technology advancements.  We have now partnered with MDLiveCare to provide telemedicine services.  This will enable us to offer alcohol and drug treatment, mental health treatment, and medical care via video conference technology, which will allow access to more individuals who need these services.

Please click the link below to read the press release:

MDLiveCare® Health Services, Inc. Announces Agreements in California, Florida and Illinois as It Continues Building National Provider Network and Licensing Relationships


Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides 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.

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Alcohol Dependence and Drug Addiction -Tolerance

by James Heller 18. May 2010 13:48
Tolerance, as it relates to alcohol dependence and drug addiction, is often misunderstood by many in the general public.  In the manner that drug and alcohol tolerance functions, it can be a safety mechanism to the body and, at the same time, deadly.  This makes awareness of the subject critical for anyone who engages in alcohol abuse or drug abuse, as well as those in recovery.

It can easily be assumed that tolerance means that an individual can drink more alcohol without getting drunk, or handle drug use in a seemingly controlled manner.  With this assumption comes the belief that these “abilities” are an example of the natural differences that exist from one individual to another.  While this is partially true, the nature of alcohol and drug tolerance is much more complicated.

Alcohol tolerance is the example with which most people can relate.  Consider the amount of alcohol you need to drink before you feel the effects, or “buzzed”.  Let’s say this is 2 beers.  If you drink 2 beers every day, over time you will feel less of an effect.  If you want to feel the same effect, you must drink more alcohol.  The amount of alcohol needed for the same feeling will continue to increase as you add more alcohol.  

The same concept works with drugs.  Alcohol abuse or drug abuse can result from tolerance since individuals will chase that feeling by drinking or using more on each occasion.  If the cycle continues with regular daily alcohol or drug intake, the body can become physically dependent and alcoholism or drug addiction is the result.  

On this road to addiction that we just followed, the brain has protected the body from overdose, with tolerance, by adjusting to the higher levels of substance use.  This benefit of drug tolerance can become a dangerous consequence, though, for recovering individuals who relapse.  The addicted brain still needs a large amount of drugs for an effect, but the body returns to a lower tolerance of what is essentially a poison.

At the time of first use on a relapse, the brain will dictate the most recent amount of drugs used to get a desired effect.  If the formerly recovering addict is not careful, this amount can easily cause a drug overdose or even be fatal.  Many drug addicts are not aware of this fact, and will even ignore warnings from fellow drug users because they don’t realize the consequences they face.

While alcoholics are less likely to overdose on alcohol during first use on a relapse, they may experience what is known as a lack of tolerance.  At this point, a drunken feeling may result from only 1 drink.  Lack of tolerance can actually occur with anyone who drinks alcohol, but it is typically coupled with alcohol dependence.  Of course, that 1 drink will still not be enough to satisfy alcoholics and they can become a danger to themselves through inebriation and alcohol’s effect on the body.

This information is good to share with teens, friends in recovery, or anyone you may know who engages in alcohol abuse or drug abuse.  Too many see tolerance as a benefit both early in substance use and in addiction.  Tolerance is explained in effective alcohol and drug treatment as part of addiction education groups to prevent accidental overdoses among those who may relapse.  Bringing this awareness to the general public may save even more lives.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides youth alcohol and drug treatment and addiction 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.

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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.