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Tuesday, September 17, 2019

The Lumineers: Addiction Happens In Cycles

addiction
Music, like books, tells stories that all of us can relate to in different ways. Songs have the power to lift us up in times of sadness, and they make us think about things in different ways. Sadder songs can make people who are isolated feel less alone. In a word, music is cathartic.

In the United States today, millions of Americans are struggling with addiction and mental health disorders. Each day, some 130 people die from an opioid overdose; roughly 88,000 Americans die from alcohol-related causes each year. The addiction crisis in America is dire.

Fortunately, many celebrities have opened up about their own experiences with mental illness, addiction, and recovery. In doing so, they provide hope to millions who feel cut off and alone because of their disease.

Some musicians in recovery have written several songs to reach members of their fan base who are struggling. Other musicians have done benefit concerts to raise awareness about treatment and sobriety. Icons need to join the conversation about addiction; this is a crisis that affects us all. The disease touches many lives on a first and second-hand basis.

The Lumineers are a band that most Americans are familiar with; they have had several hit songs and albums in recent years. For their latest project, they chose to tackle a timely subject matter—addiction. Their new album III tells a story about the disease in three acts, NPR reports. It turns out that alcohol and substance use disorders are a personal subject for some of the band members.

Addiction Happens in Cycles


The Lumineers' new release tells the story of a family dealing with the disease. Their songs discuss the fallout of addiction and how it impacts the entire family, according to the article. The band's lead singer, Wes Schultz, lost his childhood friend to addiction; that friend also happens to be the brother of the band's drummer, Jeremiah Fraites. So, they both understand how one person's illness can affect many lives.

"With drug addiction or alcoholism it really affects the individual and then it has a sort of fallout effect — similar to the effects of a radiation bomb — over time and over years and years, it continually tends to affect people's loved ones," Fraites tells NPR

III aims to explain to listeners how the disease of addiction progresses. The songs deal with one family and three generations. Alcohol and substance use disorders are family diseases. Meaning that a genetic predisposition for mental illness can be passed down and also one family member's condition disrupts the lives of all their loved ones.

"You know they talk about addiction. It's a progressive disease. It's not something where you just wake up and you're homeless and you're begging for crack or heroin," said Fraites.

While The Lumineers' new album may not be the most uplifting, it is sure to get people talking about this salient topic. We need to have more conversations about mental health disorders in order to cure the stigma that prevents people from seeking help.

It stands to reason that many of The Lumineers' fans are struggling with drugs, alcohol, and mental illness. Maybe they will hear something on the album that inspires hope and leads to recovery.

You can listen to the interview below:


If you are having trouble listening, please click here.

 

SLO County Addiction Treatment


The Haven at Pismo is the perfect place to renew to your best today. Please contact us today if you are struggling with drugs, alcohol, or co-occurring mental illness. We offer medically supervised and top-quality care, and we can help you begin a remarkable and healing journey of recovery.

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Suicide Prevention Awareness Month: Cure Stigma

suicide prevention awareness month
In the United States, millions of Americans are contending with a treatable mental health condition, but most of them haven’t sought help. This needs to change; untreated mental illness places individuals at significant risk of self-harm. The time to talk about addiction and conditions like depression is now. September is both National Recovery Month and Suicide Prevention Awareness Month.

Suicide is a consequential issue in America, and we need to shed light on the subject to encourage more people to seek assistance. The vast majority of suicide victims have diagnosable mental illnesses, and many have more than one. Suicidal ideations and attempts are preventable when individuals receive support.

At the Haven, we treat men and women living with alcohol and substance use disorders. We also help people who are contending with addiction and a co-occurring mental illness. While the former group is prone to suicidal thoughts and self-harm, the latter group is at an even higher risk.

Suicide is a leading cause of death among people who misuse alcohol and drugs, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). In 2016, nearly 45,000 individuals died by suicide in the U.S.; the majority were struggling with mental illness at the time of their deaths.

The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) reports that up to 90% of those who die by suicide have an underlying mental illness as revealed by psychological autopsy. The organization adds that 46% of those who die by suicide have a diagnosed mental illness.

Tackling Stigma During National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month


Mental health conditions are real. The existence of such diseases is supported by research, and people born with or those who develop mental illness are not at fault. The signs and symptoms are classified in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), the taxonomic and diagnostic tool published by the American Psychiatric Association (APA).

Stigma is one of the primary reasons that less than half of the adults in the United States get the help they need for mental illness. Rather than being shamed by society, those affected deserve compassion and encouragement. When men and women are made to feel responsible for their mental disease, they are more reticent to talk about their illness. Millions of Americans are battling their conditions alone, needlessly.

A key component of Suicide Prevention Awareness Month is confronting the misconceptions that precipitate stigmas. The more stigma-free we are as a country, the more willing people will be to talk openly about their problems.

“One in 5 Americans is affected by mental health conditions. Stigma is toxic to their mental health because it creates an environment of shame, fear and silence that prevents many people from seeking help and treatment. The perception of mental illness won’t change unless we act to change it.” 

Each American knows or is related to someone affected; when we as a society show more compassion, we help the ones we love. Hopefully, everyone will take time this month to better familiarize themselves with mental health conditions. The more you know, the better equipped you are to promote awareness and combat stigma. NAMI states that:

The truth is, we can all benefit from honest conversations about mental health conditions and suicide, because just one conversation can change a life.

Together we can cure stigma and inspire people to seek evidence-based treatment and heal. When men and women access mental health resources, recovery is possible, and a better life can be built.

SLO County Treatment for Co-Occurring Disorders


Long-term recovery is possible when the whole patient is treated. Many men and women become dependent on drugs and alcohol by self-medicating their mental illness. For others, co-occurring mental illness arises in the wake of protracted battles with alcohol and substance use disorders. The order in which a dual diagnosis comes about is not as relevant as ensuring that both conditions receive simultaneous treatment.

The Haven at Pismo provides a continuum of care for clients with co-occurring chemical dependency and mental illnesses. If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction and co-occurring mental illness, then please reach out to us today. Nestled on the shore of California’s Central Coast, The Haven at Pismo is the perfect place to renew to your best today.

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Community invited to “Walk for Recovery” on September 14th

walk for recovery


Walk for Recovery: Uniting friends, families, and the community to fight the disease of addiction


The Haven is excited to announce their sponsorship of SLO Co. Recovery Support Network’s 2nd annual ”Walk for Recovery,” will be taking place at Laguna Lake Park, 10 a.m.-3 p.m., on Saturday, September 14, 2019. This family-friendly event will be a 1.5 mile walk and aims to connect local resources to the community in an effort to combat substance abuse and lead healthy lives. 
This 1.5 mile walk will take place at Laguna Lake Park, 504 Madonna Road in San Luis Obispo.  Music will be provided by the popular local band, O’Donna, along with a special performance by Ignite Fire Dance. Other fun features of the event include a special appearance by Zoo to You, a wildlife program that provides exotic animal education blended with live, wild animals.
“We want the community to get out there and experience this big resource event,” said Lauryn Niezen, Director of Marketing for The Haven, a local alcohol and drug addiction treatment center. The Haven is joined by other local sponsors to offer resources to the community. 
Event sponsors include:
      Balance Treatment Center
      Veterans Services
      SLO Noor Clinic
      Ken Starr M.D. Wellness Group
      Cuesta College
      ...and more!

All 501-c3 organizations are eligible for a complimentary resource table.
For a $20 registration fee, all walkers receive a pizza coupon from Pizza Republic and a t-shirt. Kids 10 and under are free. Those who are not pre-registering are encouraged to arrive early to sign-up at 10 a.m., as the walk starts at 11 a.m.
For any questions, please call 805-202-3440 
  
Media & Public Contact:
Lauryn Niezen
Director of Marketing 
The Haven
lauryn@thehaven.com or (805) 202-3440

About San Luis Obispo County Recovery Support Network
SLO Co. Recovery Support Network was officially formed in April of 2017. Before official formation as a 501-c3, they operated for a number of years as a Drug Court Alumni group within the umbrella of Drug and Alcohol Services. They are a coalition organized by recovered drug addicts that are dedicated to helping others achieve freedom from their addictions. If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, please call their confidential hotline. Men: (805) 591-4715; Women: (805) 591-4719

About The Haven

The Haven offers specialized therapies, individualized treatment with highly credentialed counselors and therapists practicing exclusively in the field of addiction. The Haven is the only residential detox and addiction treatment center on California’s central coast. A private haven for men and women seeking restoration from substance abuse and co-occurring disorders, our multi-faceted, outcome-focused program includes traditional and complementary therapies offered at their beautiful, private campus. The Haven strives to make treatment accessible and accepts most major insurances.

National Recovery Month: Increasing Awareness

National Recovery Month
In September, The Haven at Pismo is committed to helping the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) get the message out about recovery. While we do this year-round being in the field of addiction medicine, it’s crucial to step up our efforts because it’s National Recovery Month.

In 2019, the theme of National Recovery Month is “Join the Voices for Recovery: Together We Are Stronger.” Since there are millions of Americans building lives in recovery, we would like to encourage each adult to inspire millions more to seek treatment. Men and women in sobriety and their successes are a testament to the benefits of working a program.

Thanks to recovery, individuals can once again be part of their communities. They can be present for their friends and families, and be productive members of society. Following treatment, many will decide to go back to school and then use their skills to successfully acquire gainful employment in desirable fields. There is no limit to what can be achieved when one is determined to practice the principles of recovery.

While stigma continues to prevent people in recovery from discussing their experiences openly, many people have chosen to celebrate their recovery publicly. In September, people from all walks of life are writing or creating videos about their recovery and inspiring others to take action. Please take a moment to watch a short PSA on the subject:


If you are having trouble watching, please click here.

 

Increasing Awareness About Recovery


Prevention, treatment, and recovery save lives. People in sobriety and out need the compassion and support of their communities. It is not a secret that addiction and mental illness are an epidemic. There are resources available that can help individuals turn their lives around, but those suffering require empowerment.

Working together, the message that treatment works and recovery is possible can be heard by millions of Americans dealing with the symptoms of mental illness. You can affect change in other ways, too; help by sharing PSAs or social media graphics about addiction, mental health, and recovery.

In towns and cities across the country, events are happening to educate people by raising awareness. Those who are part of the recovery community are in a unique position to help combat stigmas that prevent people from seeking treatment and recovery support services.

Mental health is essential to overall health. On top of celebrating individuals on the healing path, Recovery Month promotes and supports new evidence-based treatment and recovery practices. It is also vital to acknowledge the dedication of recovery service providers who help make recovery in all its forms possible.

This year is the 30th anniversary of National Recovery Month. SAMHSA has created a new logo for the observance that can be shared online. It features a lowercase “r” which stands for recovery of course. You are invited to share the image below as you see fit. The organization is interested in how you use the new logo; please include #RisforRecovery with your posts.


At The Haven, we would like to recognize the millions of Americans proudly living their lives in recovery. We hope that each of you will play a role in helping spread the message about the benefits of seeking help. The more people who join the effort, the more expansive our reach will be.

Please take some time this month to reflect on how far you’ve come and think about where you would like to go next in recovery. Working a program gives you the ability to set and achieve your goals.

SLO County Addiction Treatment


National Recovery Month is an ideal opportunity to decide to seek help for addiction and co-occurring mental health disorders finally. Please contact The Haven at Pismo today to learn more about the programs and services we offer. Our central coast addiction treatment center is the perfect place to renew to your best today.

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Combating Addiction Via Community

addiction
The neuroscience of addiction is the life work of Professor Judith Grisel. For Grisel, gaining a better understanding of the disease, and potentially curing it, is personal. That is because Dr. Grisel is in recovery.

In her new book, Never Enough: The Neuroscience and Experience of Addiction, the Bucknell University professor explores ways of combating today's epidemic. She is acutely familiar with how drugs and alcohol can take hold of people. While the cost of her substance use disorder was high, it also set her on a path to one day help others break the cycle and recover.

The behavioral neuroscientist drew from experience to describe how a seemingly normal upbringing can devolve into crisis. She shares anecdotes about her journey from utter despair to recovery. For the last 25 years, Grisel has dedicated her efforts to end the scourge of alcohol and drug abuse. What began as a research quest for a disease panacea, resulted in some surprising conclusions.

While Grisel may never find a panacea for addiction, the author believes that the solution can be found in connecting with each other. She believes love, compassion, and connection are the answer to the disease, The Guardian reports. "The people right next to us are an obvious place to start," she writes. "Human relationships and connections are the low-hanging fruit."

Motivation for Recovery


In the book, Grisel shares that she began drinking at 13, and how the experience was the first time she felt calm. Like many addicts and alcoholics, her disease progression moved at a swift pace. Her first drink led to daily drinking in high school and marijuana use in high school; she eventually moved on to harder substances.

At 19, Dr. Grisel dropped out of college and became estranged from her family. Intravenous cocaine use ensued, along with homelessness and unemployment. She shares about the experience that any addict can relate to, that one needs to use drugs just to feel normal. After a series of unfortunate and scary life events, the neuroscientist decided it was time to reach out for support.

Grisel's family helped her get into an addiction treatment center when she was 23. Around the same time, she began wondering if there might be a cure and thought that maybe she could help. Finding a cure served as motivation for her continued sobriety, according to the article. The professor is still looking for her eureka moment 25 years later, but she has many valuable insights to offer.

"Right now we're in a rising phase of escapism and pharmacology – this epidemic of addiction is really an epidemic of avoidance. Above all we need better ways to cope with life and to be present to our experiences. Ultimately you can't avoid yourself. It didn't matter how high I got, I was stuck with myself. I think we're soon going to get to that point as a society and then we might finally have our moment of truth."  

The New York Times bestselling author's discovery that community and human interaction is the answer to addiction is not novel. Fellowship has long been a guiding principle in 12 Step recovery programs, and they have helped countless people rebuild their lives. Still, it's beneficial when a renowned neuroscientist lends credence to the power of togetherness.

SLO County Addiction Treatment Center


Please contact The Haven if you are struggling with an alcohol or substance use disorder. Our highly credentialed team of addiction professionals can help steer you onto course toward long-term recovery. The Haven at Pismo is the perfect place to renew to your best today.

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Recovery Pioneer: In Memoriam

recovery
Recovery is a gift that comes with doing the work; miracles are possible when men and women take action. Those who walk the path of sobriety learn early on that they must pay it forward. As the saying goes, you can’t keep it if you don’t give it away.

Individuals who seek treatment for alcohol or substance use disorder are taught the importance of community, fellowship, and giving back. They come to realize that helping others achieve lasting sobriety is essential, once one has a firm footing in the program.

People can pay their recovery forward in several ways. Working with newcomers or volunteering time in assisting the operations of a support group (commitments) are a couple of examples. What’s more, many people in recovery decide to become certified drug and alcohol counselors or get behavioral technician jobs at treatment facilities.

Many owners of addiction treatment centers are also in recovery. They help themselves stay on track by providing safe havens to people who need assistance. Staying involved in the field that saved one’s life is an effective method of safeguarding sobriety.

Men and women who are new to the program may even respond better to working with individuals who have walked in their shoes. Some argue that it’s impossible to fully understand the disease of addiction unless a person has the first-hand experience. While that is not necessarily true, it is helpful when a provider, therapist, or counselor can relate to the struggles their clients face.

Remembering a Recovery Visionary


Those who choose to make working in the field of addiction recovery their purpose in life collectively help countless people heal. Working a program is a permanent job, and is a pursuit aided by a dedication to helping others.

Over the years, many individuals have distinguished themselves through their commitment to assisting others to realize recovery. The addiction recovery community recently said goodbye to one who dedicated a huge portion of his life to that end.

Ronald C. Clark, 83, died a few months ago from a heart attack and the loss is still felt, The Washington Post reports. For nearly 50 years, the recovering heroin addict helped other addicts and alcoholics heal and learn how to be productive members of society. He notably assisted people who were being ignored by the Washington D.C. community, such as ex-offenders, black, poor, homeless, and HIV-infected men and women.

In 1970, Clark co-founded an addiction treatment center in the District of Columbia, according to the article. Before being invited to the District by two former Catholic priests, Ron worked as a drug counselor in the Nevada prison system and was a director at a residential treatment center in New York.

“Ron Clark was way ahead of his time, and in many ways, we’ve gone backward because a lot of people still don’t appreciate the importance of his approach,” said Edwin Chapman, a medical doctor who treats heroin and opioid addiction. “Ron’s approach was to get to the core of a person’s being, find out what’s missing, what’s been lost, what’s been stolen and help them discover their real identity and recover their true self.”  

Clark instilled in clients the importance of giving back to the community, the article reports. Clients were required to pick and distribute fresh vegetables and free clothing to families in need. They also shoveled snow for older folks.

“He didn’t just want to see individuals recover,” said Ron’s son, Paul Clark. “He wanted the communities where they came from to recover.”

SLO County Addiction Recovery Center


The Haven at Pismo provides clients with possibilities to renew to their best today. If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, please contact us to learn more about our evidence-based addiction treatment programs.

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Addiction Screening Recommendation

addiction
With millions of Americans in the grips of alcohol and substance use disorders, the need for encouraging them to seek help is high. When people go untreated, behavioral health disorders escalate in severity and can be life-threatening. Active addiction often persists for years before a person acts and attempts to make changes in their life. However, such people require professional assistance to bring about lasting recovery.

The stigma of use disorders has a severe impact on society and prevents people from talking about their issues. Many men and women have a lot of shame surrounding their use of or dependence on drugs and alcohol. This reality means that they will go to exceedingly great lengths to prevent others from discovering that there’s a problem.

Since addiction is a complex disease that can be fatal, there is a significant need to get men and women to open up. While many individuals are unwilling to talk about their struggles with friends and family, they may be more likely to be honest with medical professionals.

Doctors are bound by a code that prevents them from disclosing a patient’s personal information. Patient/doctor confidentiality is likely to make people who struggle with drugs and alcohol feel more willing to talk. If physicians treat such patients with compassion, it can result in taking actions toward recovery.

Doctors Can Encourage Addiction Treatment Services


For more than two decades, the primary care physician's role in contributing to the addiction epidemic has been called into question. Little oversight and ignorance created a massive opioid crisis that has proven nearly impossible to contain. While many doctors have changed their approach to managing pain, the damage done is hard to undo.

It’s not possible to turn back the clock, but physicians can have a hand in encouraging people to utilize recovery services. There is evidence suggesting that doctors should screen each patient for signs of alcohol or substance use disorder.

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, an independent panel of experts, recommends that medical professionals screen every adult patient for nonmedical drug use, STAT reports. The experts can state, with “moderate certainty,” that screening for substance use is beneficial.

“We have a pretty high prevalence of adults using illicit drugs and we’re seeing harms every day from that,” said task force member Dr. Carol Mangione, the chief of general internal medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. “This is a big change that we’re really excited about. Effective treatment is where we will finally begin to move the needle on the epidemic.”

The task force stops short of encouraging a particular screening tool, according to the article. Dr. Mangione said it would be up to PCPs, hospital systems, and medical organizations to decide the best course of action.

If a patient shows signs of having a substance use disorder, physicians can then offer guidance on which steps to take next. Doctors can play a significant role in encouraging treatment and the utilization of local recovery resources.

The new recommendation will be posted for public comment until Sept. 9, 2019. The task force will review comments and then issue final guidance.

SLO County Addiction Treatment Center


At The Haven, we have a team of experienced, addiction professionals who can help you make lasting changes for the better. Please contact us today to learn more about our programs and take steps toward realizing long-term addiction recovery. Our center is the perfect place to renew to your best today.