What Is Intervention?

What Is Intervention? | Midwood Addiction Treatment

It was once believed by many that the best way to help someone with a drug or alcohol problem was to wait until he or she hit “rock bottom.” However, this notion has been widely disregarded by the medical community which has concluded in recent years that addiction should be treated as a chronic disease and not a merely a moral shortcoming or series of unfavorable life choices.

For this reason, more compassion has been given toward those who suffer from addiction, and loved ones realize they need immediate help versus further punishment by letting them wait until the situation becomes absolutely dire. An intervention is a process in which loved ones, counselors, and intervention specialists can reveal to a person struggling with addiction the negative effects of the disease on his or her life, as well as the lives of those who love them.

Intervention Participation

Typically, the families of those suffering organize and perform interventions, but anyone with a sincere and loving relationship with the person can and should participate if possible. In addition to family members, these people may include significant others, friends and colleagues/co-workers, as well as religious leaders.

It is also strongly recommended to use the services of a person trained to stage drug and alcohol interventions. That professional can provide the family and other participants with the information they need to perform a safe, thorough intervention that has the most potential to be successful.

The Purpose of an Intervention

The immediate goal of an intervention is to help the person suffering from addiction to enter a rehab program. Ideally, this is often an inpatient facility but may also be a partial-hospitalization or intensive outpatient program.

The intention of this process is not to “gang up” on the person who needs help, but instead to show him or her how devastating their addiction truly is. Once the person understands how this problem impacts the lives of others, he or she may be motivated to seek treatment. An intervention can serve as a final warning, of sorts, that loved ones are now refusing to enable or support his or her addiction and related behaviors.

What Is Intervention? | Midwood Addiction Treatment

How Does an Intervention Work?

The intervention should be conducted in a safe environment with the participation of family members, friends, and others who have a personal stake in the outcome. Adults and older children and teens may wish to participate, but very young children who can’t actively engage in the conversation or who may become distressed should be absent. Regardless of who is involved, it is vital that each person receive sufficient training before attempting to participate in the intervention.

In most cases, the person for whom the intervention is staged has wronged friends and family members physically, emotionally, or financially. And because of this, best intentions may not be enough, and it can be easy for negative emotions such as anger and resentment to surface and hijack the intervention process. If this occurs, it will result in more harm than good and could thwart the process altogether.

Moreover, an intervention is not a suitable time to address the hurt and anger each individual feels. Instead, an intervention is an opportunity to reassure the person that he or she is loved. To ensure that the intervention doesn’t get off track, each member of the group should compose, in advance, thoughts they wish to express to the addicted person. They should also have their comments approved by other group members and the counselor/interventionist who is facilitating the process.

These thoughts may include any or all of the following:

  • How the person has been personally and adversely affected by the individual’s addiction and behavior
  • Changes the person has noticed in the addicted individual’s personality, integrity, and self-control
  • The overall effect that the addicted person’s behavior has had on the relationship
  • A statement of unconditional love for the addict and a commitment by the person intervening that he/she can no longer enable the addict to destroy him/herself

The last step in planning an intervention is to ensure there is room available and waiting in a reliable, trustworthy rehab facility so the addicted person can immediately enter treatment.

Signs an Intervention Is Needed

The following are a few common signs to look for if you believe someone you know is struggling with addiction:

  • Lack of interest in activities and hobbies formerly considered important or enjoyable
  • Being late for or missing work or school, poor performance academically or professionally
  • Financial issues, like asking to borrow money or uncharacteristically racking up debt or not paying bills
  • Sleep problems, such as insomnia or sleeping excessively
  • Bloodshot eyes, bad breath, trembling/shaking, and noticeable weight loss or weight gain
  • Abnormal behaviors, impulsivity or mood swings
  • Having conflicts with family members or co-workers
  • Neglect of friends in family in favor of a new social group that condones or promotes substance abuse

What Is Intervention? | Midwood Addiction Treatment

What If the Intervention Fails?

The most impactful moment of an intervention is typically the addicted person’s realization that loved ones will no longer enable his or her addiction. Many people suffering from addiction claim to want to get treatment but do so primarily as an attempt to manipulate others into continuing to help maintain their substance abuse habit, at least temporarily.

You will know an intervention has probably been unsuccessful if the subject promises to get help “soon” or agrees to enter rehab if he or she is given money or a place to stay “for a while.” In other words, using any type of manipulation to convince friends and family of his or her desire to seek help but then failing to follow through.

Ultimately, if he or she refuses to enter a rehab program, it is essential that those who participated in the intervention remain true to their promises and no longer enable the person’s addiction and behavior. It often takes more than one attempt at an intervention for it to stick. The important thing is to stay strong in the face of the person’s addiction and continue to assure them they are loved even though you are withholding means of support unless they agree to treatment.

Getting Treatment for Addiction

Staging an intervention is a time when families and friends can commit themselves to the process of getting their loved one into treatment. But remember, for the addicted person, intervention is only the first step to recovery. The majority of their work still lies ahead through therapy, counseling, skill-building, relapse prevention strategies, and a tremendous amount of unyielding resolve.

The goal of staging an intervention is to urge the addicted person to admit there is a problem and to receive help. Once this occurs, it is critical to get that person into rehab immediately and make arrangements beforehand to ensure the person is safely transferred into treatment without an interval in which they can change their mind.

Midwood Addiction Treatment offers treatment formats including partial-hospitalization, intensive outpatient treatment, and outpatient detox. We employ an integrated approach to addiction that includes evidence-based therapies vital to the recovery process, facilitated by compassionate addiction specialists with care and expertise.

If you or someone you love is addicted to drugs or alcohol, contact us as soon as possible to discuss treatment options!

ReVia for Opioid and Alcohol Treatment

ReVia for Opioid and Alcohol Treatment | Midwood Addiction Treatment

ReVia (naltrexone) is a medication that is commonly used to treat both opioid use disorder and alcoholism. The key ingredient in ReVia is naltrexone, an opioid antagonist that blocks other opioids from interacting with the brain’s receptors.

As a result, individuals on ReVia can use opioids and alcohol without feeling their effects. This action can be a very effective way to prevent people in recovery from being tempted to use again. For this reason, ReVia is one of the most popular medication-assisted recovery treatments for opioid dependence.

Facts about ReVia

Naltrexone comes in two forms – as a pill (ReVia) and as an extended-release injection (Vivitrol). ReVia provides users with more control over their recovery and is easier to administer since patients can use it at home. Conversely, Vivitrol must be administered by a physician, and one shot lasts about four weeks.

Importantly, naltrexone is not naloxone, although with similar sounding names both related to opioid addiction it’s easy to understand the confusion. While naltrexone chemically blocks the effects of most opioids (opioid antagonist), naloxone actually reverses the effects of opioids and is used by first responders as an overdose antidote. It is also used as a component in some other drugs (Suboxone) to prevent abuse.

Side Effects

ReVia for Opioid and Alcohol Treatment | Midwood Addiction Treatment

Like most pharmaceuticals, ReVia is associated with a few side effects, including the following:

  • Cramping
  • Headache and dizziness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Lethargy
  • Joint pain
  • Chills
  • Constipation or diarrhea
  • Cough
  • Sexual problems

Liver damage, arthritis, and respiratory infections may also be side effects associated with long-term ReVia use. Because this drug is not habit-forming, it can be used for years if necessary, but this may increase the risk of more serious side effects.

Withdrawal and Cravings

One of the most common misconceptions about ReVia is that it can help mitigate withdrawal symptoms caused by alcohol or opioids. While ReVia blocks chemicals like opiates from binding to opioid receptors, it does not decrease the intensity of withdrawal symptoms.

To ease opioid withdrawal symptoms, a person would need a partial opioid agonist similar to Suboxone, although this would not help with alcohol withdrawal (for this, a benzodiazepine or barbiturate is often used in medical settings). Furthermore, ReVia does not reduce cravings for opioids or alcohol.

Use of ReVia with Narcotics or Alcohol

As noted, Vivitrol and ReVia block the effects of certain substances and attempting to get high or drunk while using them will be unlikely to produce many sought-after sensations.

Importantly, however, ReVia can only be effective to a certain extent. As such, some patients (particularly those who have been given Vivitrol) may try to overcome this block by consuming more of a drug than usual. The problem here is considerable – the amounts needed to circumvent effects of naltrexone are often dangerously high, and many have overdosed on ReVia for this reason.

Finally, rather than attempting to abstain initially, some people take ReVia using the Sinclair Method. The Sinclair Method is an approach to alcohol addiction treatment that uses a technique referred to as pharmacological extinction, or the use of an opiate blocker to transform habit-forming behaviors into habit-extinguishing behaviors. The effect is intended to be a return to a person’s “normal” level of alcohol cravings that existed before addiction.

Unfortunately for some, while quite logical in theory, this approach doesn’t always work. Over time, perhaps just a matter of weeks, a person’s brain can override the effects of naltrexone, inciting a return of pleasant feelings during bouts of drinking. This, in effect, neutralizes naltrexone entirely.

Effectiveness of ReVia vs. True Opioid Replacement Therapy

Research has shown that the two most effective methods of opioid replacement therapy and recovery are buprenorphine and methadone. Compared to naltrexone, these therapies tend to have a much higher success rate.

Perhaps some of the reason for this difference is patient resistance to continuing treatment. Some physicians contend, however, that it simply isn’t being prescribed appropriately.

But still, naltrexone certainly has its benefits. Because naltrexone does not have the potential for abuse, it is far more accessible than other drugs. For example, opioid withdrawal drugs such as Suboxone can only be prescribed by specially licensed health professionals because it contains buprenorphine, a drug which can be misused.

Also, the law restricts these providers to a set number of patients to whom they can dispense these drugs. This limit was put into place in an attempt to counteract the overprescribing of drugs with a high potential for abuse. Regarding methadone, only certain facilities operating under strict controls are allowed to treat patients with this drug.

ReVia for Opioid and Alcohol Treatment | Midwood Addiction Treatment

Another benefit of ReVia is that it is not considered to be an opioid in and of itself, and is considered by some to be preferable to other treatment methods simply because it is not a true opioid. This fact is vital when you consider the larger debate that’s been happening in the world of recovery for some time. Some people think the concept of treating addiction with another potentially addictive substance is misguided at best, and downright irresponsible at worst.

In fact, despite the clinically-proven benefits of using medication-assisted treatment, people contend that it is only worsening the problem. And while science doesn’t really agree, those who feel this is true occasionally fight to pass laws that make this form of treatment less accessible. One advantage of ReVia, therefore, is that it can be beneficial for those who are not able to be treated with other means that could be more effective.

It’s also worthwhile to mention that naltrexone remains one of the very few treatments for alcoholism that is proven to be effective. Alternatives such as Antabuse are used less and less in lieu of naltrexone’s clinically-proven ability to fight alcohol addiction without the horrific side effect of vomiting.

Drug and Alcohol Tolerance

The use of ReVia can reduce a person’s level of tolerance when taken over a prolonged period. In an ideal world where people didn’t encounter relapse, this wouldn’t be as much of a concern. But, unfortunately, about half of people with a substance use disorder do relapse at some point.

If drug use is again continued at a lower tolerance, the risk of overdose is far higher. For those who aren’t aware of this effect of ReVia and choose to go back to using at the same level as before, it may end up being a lethal mistake.

Using ReVia as a Component of a Complete Recovery Program

Similar to some erroneous beliefs about other medications, some people may be under the impression that the only factor in successful recovery is simply continuing to use ReVia. The truth, however, is that there’s a lot more involved in this process, and if it were as simple as just taking a pill every day, there would be a lot more people in active recovery.

Battling the symptoms of withdrawal and the cravings that result is just the first step in a balanced and comprehensive recovery program. The real work begins during psychotherapy and counseling and getting to the root of addiction and factors that contribute to it.

If you are addicted to drugs or alcohol, please contact us as soon as possible to discuss treatment options and find out how we can help you restore sanity to your life and experience the long-lasting wellness and sobriety you deserve!

Dual Diagnosis Treatment: Why Is It Important?

Dual Diagnosis Treatment | Midwood Addiction Treatment

Dual Diagnosis Treatment: Why Is It Important? – When a person suffers from addiction in addition to a mental health disorder, such as anxiety or depression, this is referred to as a dual diagnosis (also known as co-occurring or comorbid disorders). Dual diagnosis is very common among those who engage in substance abuse, and treatment demands comprehensive care to address both conditions appropriately.

Frequently, one disorder exacerbates the other – for instance, a person with depression may resort to substance use as a means to self-medicate. Unfortunately, this is only a temporary solution and can rapidly devolve into a worsening of mental health. Conversely, substance abuse itself can induce depression and anxiety to the extent that these symptoms become fully diagnosable as a disorder.

There is no single scientific explanation as to why mental illness, substance abuse, and addiction occur together so often. Most experts contend that a combination of biological, developmental, and environmental factors converge in a way that appears to contribute to both conditions.

Unfortunately, people who experience both mental illness and substance use disorders often encounter symptoms that are more intense and resistant to treatment when compared to those who suffer from only one condition.

Dual Diagnosis Assessment

During a clinical assessment for a dual diagnosis, health professionals gather collect information and examine many factors, such as the following:

Does the patient…

  • …meet criteria for one or more psychological conditions?
  • …have a history of substance abuse that has negatively affected their health, family, relationships, work, etc.?
  • …appear to be a threat to the safety of themselves or others?
  • …have a strong support system and resources available?
  • …display the motivation to engage in rehab and, ultimately, enter recovery?

Signs and Symptoms of Related Disorders

Mental health and substance abuse often co-occur together, but the symptoms can usually be distinguished. Common signs and symptoms of a mental health condition include the following:

  • Impulsive or risky behavior
  • Suicidal or homicidal ideations
  • A lack of interest in daily activities
  • Increased irritability and agitation
  • Lack of energy, fatigue, and lethargy
  • Negative changes in appetite, weight, or sleep patterns
  • Racing, intrusive thoughts and difficulty concentrating
  • Feelings of hopelessness, worthlessness, guilt, shame, and fear

Symptoms and behaviors associated with substance abuse and addiction include the following:

  • An inability to control substance use
  • Cravings for drugs or alcohol are experienced
  • Tolerance develops, meaning more of a substance is needed to achieve the desired effect
  • Symptoms of withdrawal manifest when the person attempts to quit or cut back
  • Life revolves around acquiring, using and recovering from substance use
  • There is a failure to meet critical obligations, such as school, work, family, and relationships

Treatment for Dual Diagnosis

Suffering from a mental health condition in combination with a substance abuse disorder can be incredibly challenging. Nonetheless, through participation in intensive treatment, such as behavioral interventions, committed individuals will find that recovery is indeed possible.

Behavioral Therapy

Dual Diagnosis Treatment | Midwood Addiction Treatment

Behavioral therapies may include the following:

Cognitive-behavioral therapy – A form of psychotherapy that seeks to reduce problematic beliefs, feelings, and practices and displace them for healthier, more positive thoughts and patterns of behavior.

Dialectic behavioral therapy – A form of psychotherapy that has the goal of reducing harmful behaviors.

Integrated group therapy – A form of psychotherapy that is based heavily on peer support and addresses the symptoms of both mental health conditions and substance abuse simultaneously.


Treating a person with a dual-diagnosis often include the use of medication in addition to psychotherapy, depending on the mental health and substance use disorder. For example, anti-depressants are often used for depression or anxiety, and opioid replacement therapy can be employed for persons who are dependent on heroin or prescription painkillers.

Inpatient Dual Diagnosis Treatment

Depending on the intensity of the mental illness or addiction, a person may benefit from a partial hospitalization program (PHP). Due to the complicated nature of a dual diagnosis, many people with co-occurring conditions will require continual, long-term support from multiple health professionals, such as general practitioners, counselors, therapists, and psychiatrists.

PHP rehab programs are more intensive than outpatient programs because clients can receive the following services:

  • Daily therapy sessions
  • Daily support group participation
  • Immersion in a community with similar experiences
  • Continuing education on mental health conditions, substance abuse, and addiction

Outpatient Dual Diagnosis Treatment

Outpatient treatment, conversely, is more flexible than PHP treatment. People who choose outpatient treatment have successfully completed an inpatient or PHP treatment program or require more freedom to tend to work, school, or family responsibilities.

Patients may receive a variety of services during outpatient treatment, including:

  • Transportation
  • Individual and family therapy
  • Medication assisted-treatment
  • Support for independent sober living
  • Involvement in peer support groups, such as Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous

If you or someone close to you is suffering from substance abuse and a mental health disorder, please contact us immediately to discuss treatment options and begin the journey to recovery!

Coping Mechanisms for Addiction

Coping Mechanisms for Addiction | Midwood Addiction Treatment

Coping Mechanisms for Addiction – If a person becomes overwhelmed with life’s struggles, such as the loss of employment, a failing marriage, physical health problems, emotional instability or co-occurring mental health disorders, he or she may begin to self-medicate with drugs or alcohol. Eventually, this pattern of abuse becomes increasingly compulsive, and an addiction ultimately develops.

List of Coping Mechanisms

Although the number of strategies outlined as follows may be somewhat intimidating, it is important to realize that you do have the power to take control of your life, health, and happiness. You don’t have to practice all of these or try to engage in them all simultaneously. The path toward recovery varies for each person, and hence, the combination of coping mechanisms that bring the most benefit will differ person to person.

Developing a Multi-Faceted Approach

Instead of becoming overwhelmed by these strategies, you may consider them as part of an extensive toolkit, so to speak. Should the need arise to use them, you’ll be prepared to execute them to ward off temptation and relapse.

Create a Social Support Network

Developing significant and supportive relationships can help to reinforce your sense of belonging, self-confidence, and self-awareness. You can choose to re-kindle an old relationship or establish a new one, but recognize that these positive relationships are a vital component of recovery.

They can help to end loneliness and isolation and allow others to reflect your mental and emotional state back to you and give encouragement or voice concern should you deviate from your focus.

Join a Support Group

Also, you can participate in various support groups. Whether faith-based or secular, these groups can give you the benefit of shared experiences facilitated by peer support. These interactions promote increased accountability, encouragement and access to other coping skills. These groups can also be the perfect place to meet new sober friends.

Enhanced Interpersonal Skills

The quality of your relationships, such as those with a spouse, child, or friend, can improve when you learn how to create and honor boundaries and find new, healthy ways to express needs. Communication skills training can help you in more precisely conveying your needs and understanding those of others, relating your feelings honestly, and listening more effectively. When you’re struggling with thoughts of substance abuse, you need to be able to reach out to those people who care most and explain that you need help.

Spiritual Practices

Spiritual or religious practices have been shown to provide significant benefit to those who participate during and after substance abuse treatment. Not only do these practices offer sources of hope, inspiration, and empowerment, they also allow you another method to keep yourself accountable and sober.

Mindfulness Practices

Coping Mechanisms for Addiction | Midwood Addiction Treatment

Too often, a person in the throes of addiction or struggling to maintain recovery finds that their thoughts are stuck in the past or the future. This behavior can detract from the power of the present moment – mindfulness helps a person to be “present in the present,” and deal with things as they occur.

When one is successful at doing this, he or she will be better able to accept the situation and access the power, resources, and skills to change it. Mindfulness has been shown to improve self-control and moderate impulsivity, two skills that are of great benefit when one is attempting to cope with a potential trigger.

Strategizing Behaviors

Avoiding high-risk situations is essential to protect oneself from triggers. In recovery, the acronym “H.A.L.T.” is often employed that can help a person remember the most common states that can result in thoughts of relapse. H.A.L.T. stands for Hungry, Lonely, Angry and Tired, or in other words, situations that might compel one to use drugs or alcohol to alleviate these feelings.

If you can’t circumvent a situation that makes you feel this way, such as an intense day of work, you can still be mindful or controlling of the things you can. For example, you can make arrangements to see a close friend on a day you know you’ll be feeling exhausted or lonely to help to bolster your mood and reinforce your recovery plans.

Problem Solving

Sometimes a challenging situation is unavoidable. But instead of being reactive and turning to drugs or alcohol, you must be proactive and strategize your behavior or actions to achieve the best outcome possible. Rather than becoming overwhelmed, look to the heart of the issue and see if there is something you can change to temper the temptation or potential negative outcome.

Practicing Refusal Skills

A person cannot always shield oneself from risky situations and temptations. For this reason, you need to find in yourself the confidence and ability to be assertive and say no. It may sound trivial, but practicing different ways of saying “no” to drugs or alcohol out loud may be helpful.

Emotional Regulation Skills

Negative and unhealthy emotions can wreak havoc on a person, resulting in a state of imbalance that makes them more vulnerable to drug or alcohol use. Emotional reactions are found in most situations and cannot be avoided. Because of this, a person must learn to moderate and control his or her reactions and nurture those that are positive.

Anger Management

Anger is an intense emotion, one that affects the mind and an individual’s physiological state. Blood pressure, heart rate, and body temperature may rise, feeding your awareness that you’re feeling out of control. Collectively, this state may compel you to consider managing these feelings through substance use.

Anger management helps people to articulate anger in a more assertive way that is not aggressive or confrontational, therefore offering a greater opportunity to promote change and lessen the chance of a confrontation.

Stress Management Skills

Coping Mechanisms for Addiction | Midwood Addiction Treatment

Stress is a normal part of life, but sometimes people are unable to deal with it appropriately, or they encounter situations that produce an excessive amount of stress. By learning how to manage stress more effectively, a person lessens the opportunity for thoughts of using to arise and balance an emotional state to avoid further triggers that could perpetuate substance abuse.

Healthily managing stress may require counseling, exercise, family support, and learning to confront issues actively and directly instead of letting them accumulate and get out of your control.

Participating In Enjoyable Activities

When a person experiences addiction, they often neglect activities that were once meaningful or enjoyable to them, as they devote increasing amounts of time and energy to the pursuance and use of drugs and alcohol.

Recovery is the time to reconnect with these interests or find new hobbies or activities that can serve as distractions and foster a sense of fulfillment, accomplishment, and well-being. Various hobbies may pique your interest, such as gardening, painting, crafting, sports, reading, playing an instrument, listening to music or cooking.

Develop Healthy Habits as an Outlet

As addiction gets worse, the person may forget about important aspects of self-care. During recovery, adopting better habits is critical, allowing you to take care of yourself, body and mind. Good dietary choices and nutrition can help repair the body, while also avoiding hunger, which can lead to thoughts of drug use.

Exercising is also one of the most powerful coping mechanisms – it releases endorphins, which are the body’s natural feel-good chemicals.

Getting Treatment for Drug and Addiction

Coping mechanisms can be learned through a comprehensive addiction treatment program that includes services essential to recovery, such as behavioral therapy, counseling, and group support.

Midwood Addiction Treatment offers these services in multiple formats including partial hospitalization and outpatient treatment. We provide clients with the skills and knowledge they need to employ healthy coping mechanisms and experience a fulfilled life, free of substances.

Contact us today to find out how we can help you plan your personal path to recovery!

What To Expect During Outpatient Drug Rehab

Outpatient Drug Rehab | Midwood Addiction Treatment

When an individual participates in outpatient treatment, they receive help for their substance abuse problems but are still able to attend to daily responsibilities such as work, school, and family commitments. Although patients are not under strict supervision 24/7, an outpatient drug rehab program can be a very effective way to treat drug and alcohol use disorders.

While each outpatient program provides various services, many include medication-assisted detox, individual and family counseling, and different types of therapies and support groups. A comprehensive treatment plan addresses the needs of the whole person, rather than just the disease. This approach offers the greatest chance for overcoming triggers and achieving long-term abstinence from drugs and alcohol.

What is Outpatient Drug Rehab?

Outpatient drug rehab centers assist people to overcome dangerous drug using or drinking behavior and also learn how to identify triggers and prevent relapse. Many outpatient programs meet daily for the first several weeks or months. Eventually, the number of meetings per week decrease based on how far along a person has come in their recovery program.

Participation in an outpatient drug rehab program can be daunting for some, especially when entering treatment for the first time. During outpatient drug rehab programs, several services are offered to clients from beginning to end.

The most common stages of outpatient drug treatment are listed below.

STAGE 1: Evaluation and Intake

An initial intake assessment or evaluation is conducted prior to a person entering an outpatient drug program. During the assessment, an addiction specialist ascertains the severity of a person’s addiction and may also diagnose co-existing mental disorders, if applicable. An evaluation usually requires some combination of medical history, physical exam, and drug testing. This initial information helps medical staff develop a plan, which is then observed and updated throughout the course of treatment.

Some alcoholics and drug users may need to go through withdrawal under medical supervision before beginning an outpatient program. A medical detox can offer alcoholics and addicts a safe environment, and health care staff can work together to make the withdrawal process more comfortable and intervene in the event of a medical emergency.

STAGE 2: Therapy and Treatment Approaches

1. Individual Talk Therapy

Psychotherapies, such as cognitive behavioral therapy, are the foundation of most outpatient drug rehab programs. Individuals enrolled in rehab will almost always be required to participate in individual counseling sessions as well as group therapy sessions either daily or weekly. Participation in family therapy and self-help support groups, such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), is also highly encouraged.

2. Medications

Some drug users and alcoholics respond well to pharmacotherapy or the use of medication employed to treat their addictions. Various medications indicated to treat substance use disorders can minimize cravings, reduce withdrawal symptoms, or block the effects of drugs or alcohol upon exposure.

3. Education

Understanding the impact of psychoactive substances on the body and how they affect the brain can help people perceive addiction as less mysterious and glamorous. Because of this, most outpatient drug programs provide educational sessions to their clients. During these sessions, recovering addicts and alcoholics will learn about the disease model of addiction as well as methods they can use to overcome it.

4. Support Services

Outpatient drug rehab programs usually offer a number of supportive services to recovering addicts/alcoholics, both throughout and following rehab. For example, they may conduct group therapy sessions, help with vocational or educational objectives, or even assist low-income individuals to find ways to pay for substance abuse treatment.

5. Holistic Practices and Therapies

Research has shown that certain holistic practices can help improve outcomes after both inpatient or outpatient addiction treatment. These include a variety of therapies that are different than talk therapy – they are based in other ways of expressing oneself and include but are not limited to art, music, and gardening therapy.

Also, mind-body connection disciplines such as mindfulness meditation, yoga, and exercise have been shown to benefit and help people manage cravings and stay active throughout recovery.

STAGE 3: Aftercare Planning

Aftercare planning is essential for a successful reentry into the community and the prevention of relapse. It helps people apply the lessons learned in treatment to their own lives. Before you complete treatment, you will be asked to design a relapse prevention plan, and connect with outside peer support groups. Also, you will most likely be encouraged to return to the program for regular group and individual counseling sessions.

What To Expect Following The Program

Although a great start, completing an outpatient drug rehab program is only just the beginning. Recovery is a lifelong process, and certain steps should be taken after rehab to guarantee success.

Upon completion of an outpatient rehab program, recovering substance abusers will often work with an addiction specialist to devise an exit plan. This plan usually includes details about where the person will reside and work, what he or she can do to avoid relapse, and what types of treatments in which they should continue to participate.

How To Help Someone In An Outpatient Drug Rehab Program

Outpatient drug rehab is not like inpatient rehab, where clients reside in a facility during treatment. Rather, they are free to come and go as they please. For this reason, visiting someone in an outpatient alcohol program isn’t often necessary. Outpatient rehab programs do encourage the participation of loved ones during the recovery process, however, and this is why many rehab centers permit loved ones to sit in on educational group sessions.

Family members and friends may also be urged to participate in family counseling with recovering addicts and alcoholics. This engagement helps them improve their understanding of alcoholism and drug addiction, as well as help support the person in recovery during this challenging process.

Can You Leave Outpatient Programs Before Completion?

Outpatient rehab is entirely voluntary, and no one is obligated to participate, which means that any person is free to leave a rehab program before completion. Medical professionals and addiction specialists, however, strongly discourage this for several reasons.

Recovering substance abusers who don’t complete treatment have not learned everything they could, and are not always able to deal with life’s stressors and the temptations of addiction. Therefore, they are much more likely to experience a relapse.

Some addicts and alcoholics, however, are ordered by a court to complete an outpatient treatment program. This is often the result of a person being charged with or convicted of an alcohol or drug-related crime, such as a DUI or possession of an illegal substance. If the person does not complete the outpatient rehab program, they could incur greater legal and financial consequences, such as hefty fines or incarceration.

Outpatient Drug Rehab Program Expectations

Starting an outpatient drug rehab program can be frightening for many people. Knowing what to expect, however, can make the process a little less daunting and gives clients the opportunity to ask questions and address concerns.

If you or a loved one has an alcohol or drug problem and want to know more about outpatient programs, please contact us as soon as possible and find out how we can help! You can regain your sanity and restore joy, wellness, and harmony to your life!

Group Therapy for Addiction

Group Therapy | Midwood Addiction Treatment

Group therapy employs evidence-based psychotherapeutic strategies in a collaborative setting to help patients understand the nature of their struggles and learn coping methods to help prevent future substance abuse. In structured rehab programs, group therapy sessions are comprised of many individuals, all battling addictions to a multitude of substances.

Group therapy sessions facilitate an atmosphere of interpersonal openness and goodwill, wherein individuals can feel comfortable sharing their personal stories and exchanging constructive suggestions with fellow group members. A mental health specialist, such as a psychologist or psychotherapist, oversees each session, ensuring that it remains beneficial and free of condemnation.

Compared to one-on-one therapy, clinical evidence suggests that group therapy is equally effective.

Benefits of Group Therapy

Patients can expect a wide array of benefits from group therapy. Having a structured system of support helps combat the overwhelming feelings of isolation and loneliness that characterize life as a substance abuser.

Group Therapy | Midwood Addiction Treatment

Throughout the process of recovery, one often endures temptations, both chemical cravings and as an invasive rational thought process that begs the question, why not? – unaccompanied by any obvious counterargument.

Simply put, Engaging with a group of other individuals facing similar trials allows one access to the wealth of experience obtained by others further advanced in their recovery. Witnessing the success of others often inspires our own resolve in the face of temptation.

Despite similarities, group therapy within a rehab program and a 12-step program are not the same. A 12-step program accommodates a very high number of members, none of whom are required to participate. Conversely, group therapy sessions are strictly limited to 12 or fewer members and participation is compulsory.

Restrictions such as a limited group size and mandated interaction between members ensure that each individual progresses appropriately, developing the skills necessary to confront their issues. Group dynamics tend to reinforce honesty among the members, working to expose and eliminate self-destructive beliefs and patterns of thought.

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy

Group Therapy | Midwood Addiction Treatment

The therapist leading a group has several support models at their disposal. Among the most common is cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), a psychotherapeutic method formed around the idea that our behaviors result from the way we think.

Considering this view, the fact that our lives descended into ones characterized by addiction indicates that our thoughts, beliefs, and morals concerning the world are fundamentally addictive. Because of this, it is imperative to revolutionize our mental approach to life completely.

Ideally, CBT in a group setting exposes, analyzes, and conquers all aspects of addictive mentality for each of the members. In this way, each individual undergoes a professionally-guided development of autonomous self-control, enabling a permanent recovery through the ability to recognize and choose a healthy, meaningful future, unchained from a tragic past.

Furthermore, group dynamics foster long-term sobriety by encouraging each member to serve as a successful role model for newcomers and other group members. Substance rehab programs that offer individual and group therapy in combination are statistically the most effective. However, when such a situation is unavailable, group therapy seeks to maximize the efficacy of an individual’s time spent with the therapist.

Group Therapy in Rehab

After patient detox, our center offers group therapy in both inpatient (rehab) and intensive outpatient formats, as well as individual therapy, family counseling, nutritional support, 12-step program meetings, and holistic services such as meditation, yoga, and art therapy.

Inpatients benefit from around-the-clock medical and mental health care and support. Residential treatment is best for those with severe addictions and those who can take the time away from life responsibilities to engage in treatment. At rehab, patients reside at the center 24/7 for at last 30 days during the initial stages of recovery.

Conversely, outpatient treatment may be better for those with less severe addictions or need more flexibility to attend to personal responsibilities such as work, school, and family. Also, discharged inpatients are encouraged to participate in outpatient therapy while they are transitioning back to the outside world.

After intensive treatment has been completed, former patients can take advantage of discharge planning services which help identify local resources that can be used for ongoing therapy, counseling, and group support. Also, our center hosts alumni activities that foster long-term peer interaction and comradery.

Our programs are structured with various components of evidence-based treatment practices and holistic approaches to treatment that provide our patients with the knowledge and tools they need to be successful in their recovery.

If you or your loved one is suffering from substance abuse, please seek help as soon as possible.

The Stages of Change Model and Addiction

Stages of Change Model | Midwood Addiction Treatment

According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, change can be defined as ” “to become different” or “to undergo transformation, transition, or substitution.” Change is a simple and common word that we use every day, and in most instances, the word itself means very little to us. But for a caterpillar turning into a butterfly, change is characterized by a complete metamorphosis. The same has also been said regarding the monumental shift from addiction to recovery.

For many, however, even small changes can seem daunting. For those suffering from a chemical and emotional dependency on a substance, a sea change is required and may feel as though it is next to impossible.

The ultimate catalyst for any type of personal change is finding, fostering, and maintaining the motivation to do so. Some change requires little or no motivation on the part of the living being – it’s either a naturally-occurring, biological process (the caterpillar-butterfly transformation for example) or it occurs out of our control, by virtue of a complete accident that we could not have predicted.

But recovery does not reflect either of these scenarios. Motivation is needed to initiate change, and it doesn’t happen by accident or by the strict rules of nature. We as beings must make a decision, and in doing so, use determination instrumentally to see it through.

Motivation is, in essence, the fundamental desire for recovery to occur, and must be maintained throughout the entire process. Without this desire, failure is imminent.

Moreover, some people in recovery start out motivated but then suffer from a lack of resolve as time wears on and new obstacles appear. Others are coaxed into recovery having little or no motivation but over time, somehow find the strength within themselves to buckle down and accept the need for change.

The stages of change model (also known as the transtheoretical model) is a set of five or six stages, depending upon interpretation,* that “assesses an individual’s readiness to act on a new healthier behavior, and provides strategies, or processes of change to guide the individual.”

James Prochaska and Carlo DiClimente developed the most widely-accepted framework for the stages of change model in their book “Changing for Good” (1994). The six stages of change consist of the following:

  • Pre-Contemplation
  • Contemplation
  • Preparation
  • Action
  • Maintenance
  • Termination

Stages of Change Model – Stage 1: Pre-contemplation

Pre-contemplation is the first component of the six stages of change model and requires no recognition of a problem. Or, he or she may acknowledge deep down that perhaps a problem exists, but has scant motivation to do anything about it or consider the possibility that a change is needed. Sadly, many people who find themselves in the throes of addiction are at this stage and will never leave it.

Rather than takings steps toward change, pre-contemplators more or less wallow in the mire of their existence, making excuses and justifying their decisions. Even when faced with a cost-benefit analysis, people in this stage maintain stubbornness and refuse to believe that their lives could profoundly improve without drugs or alcohol.

Stage 2: Contemplation

Stages of Change Model | Midwood Addiction Treatment

Individuals in the contemplation stage have become more self-aware and have begun to admit their behaviors are destructive to themselves and others. However, they remain unsure as to whether a change is worth the effort, and may prolong their start dates for no justifiable reason (i.e., “I’ll quit when I turn 30.”)

In this stage, however, change is thought of as a real possibility, and toward its conclusion, the conscious desire to recover from addiction begins to take hold. The person also starts to realize that the costs of substance abuse outweigh the benefits and that change is not only necessary but desirable.

Stage 3: Preparation

The preparation stage is the third component of the six stages of change model and can also be described as “the beginning of the end.” Moreover, the person is beginning to locate resources and make plans to receive treatment, go to 12-step meetings, etc. They may start by contacting their insurance company and rehab centers and discussing long-term treatment options with family and employers. Sometimes this stage is initiated with a family intervention.

People who are stymied in their efforts during this phase may encounter legitimate barriers to treatment such as insurance coverage and financial constraints. Many of those who locate assistance, however, successfully enter stage four.

Stage 4: Action

The Action stage is about the execution of plans prepared in stage three. These plans have been developed to promote positive physical, mental and emotional change through immersion in addiction recovery methods (inpatient rehab, for example) in conjunction with abstinence from substances. The attendance of AA or NA support groups, counseling, and inpatient or intensive outpatient treatment can significantly reduce the chance of relapse during the action stage.

Also, people in recovery begin to explore new hobbies and daily activities as replacements for pursuits previously centered on the use of a substance. For example, going to a bar or gathering at a friend’s house to watch a sporting event will almost always trigger intense cravings, not just for the substance but social participation and acceptance as well. A good replacement might be to watch or listen to the game while engaging in a hobby such as carpentry or painting.

Keep in mind that plans for this kind of change do not have to be perfect. Waiting complacently for a supposedly perfect, grand opportunity to finally make all these changes will amount to nothing more than wasted time.

Stage 5: Maintenance

Stages of Change Model | Midwood Addiction Treatment

The maintenance stage heralds the sustainment of sobriety-promoting plans enacted in stage four. Without the ability to step back and gain perspective on our progress accompanied by an honest will to rectify any errors as they arise, we ultimately risk a return to our old ways of behaving. A relapse can occur during any stage but becomes increasingly detrimental during action and maintenance.

Sobriety is like a muscle. When you start working it out, it gets sore, and if we lack resolve, we can let this pain hinder our plans. And yet, if we forge ahead, the muscle breaks down against the new activity, then rebuilds itself to perform that very activity even better.

And though this constant vigilance may seem like a daunting task, over time, overcoming challenges becomes increasingly natural and much more enjoyable. It is an ongoing process that takes nothing less than unflappable courage to obtain the ultimate reward – sobriety. You can think of it just like the start of anything – nobody is ever an expert right out of the gate. If it were that easy, everyone would be doing it.

Stage 6: Termination

The final component of the six stages of change model is termination and is achieved when one’s lifestyle becomes transformed entirely. Consider the muscle analogy: when you break down your previous life (the muscle) which was essentially built to better ‘perform’ substance abuse, you can rebuild your life (the new muscle) to exclude the ability to abuse substances.

Once this is accomplished, accommodating substance abuse back into your life requires you to break it back down, which requires considerable effort and garners no discernable reward.

In stage six, the person now lives in the present and service of his or her own best interests, not those of a substance. He or she is free, exuding the confidence and courage that will safeguard against relapse. We are now referring to a fully transformed, actualized substance-free individual who is no longer an active addict or an alcoholic – he or she is someone who has essentially beat a life-threatening disease.

Being free from a substance does not mean making it impossible to use it. Those who have become independent from a substance must continue to recognize their potential for relapse, and yet always choose otherwise. It is perfectly normal and healthy to fear a relapse because losing the life you have regained to let yourself once again be controlled by a substance is indeed tragic.

Moreover, true sobriety takes resolute courage to face these fears and conquer them – one step at a time, one day at a time.

* Proponents of the five-stage change model state that the termination phase should not be included because change is an ongoing, never-ending process.

Our programs are structured with various components of evidence-based treatment practices and holistic approaches to treatment that provide our patients with the knowledge and tools they need to be successful in their recovery.

If you or your loved one is suffering from substance abuse, please seek help as soon as possible.

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy | Midwood Addiction Treatment

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy for Addiction – Cognitive-behavioral therapy is a form of psychotherapy that is focused on the importance of thinking about and closely inspecting our behavior and thoughts.

The goal of using cognitive-behavioral therapy for addiction is to help people identify certain situations, thoughts, and feelings that foster addictive behaviors. Once these have been identified, the aim is to employ ways of coping with them that is healthy instead of destructive.

Instead of being a distinct technique, CBT is a general term for several theories that are similar in approach but have varying characteristics. These include Dialectic Behavior Therapy, Rational Behavior Therapy, Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy, and Cognitive Therapy.

Components of CBT

In general, CBT for addiction is about understanding and fostering insight into why an individual chooses to abuse drugs or alcohol. Rather than assuming substance abuse is merely a product of using addictive substances, CBT posits that the person has underlying feelings and needs that have to be addressed.

Moreover, if a patient undergoes detox and withdrawal, direct dependence can be mitigated relatively quickly. But unless the patient is equipped with healthy coping skills and can identify the reasons why he or she abused drugs in the first place, there is a high risk of relapse when faced with risky situations.

In a nutshell, people in recovery must be able to replace addictive behaviors with positive, healthy alternatives. Other benefits include the construction of a support network, promotion of positive thinking, and teaching patients how to better withstand peer pressure and prevent relapse.

Skills Training

During skills training, the person begins to unlearn destructive behaviors and identify ways to replace these old habits. CBT assumes there are reasons above and beyond chemical dependence why a person uses substances as a means to cope with personal issues, such as never having learned healthy strategies that help one to deal with challenges.

Functional Analysis

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy | Midwood Addiction Treatment

Functional analysis is a process in which the patient and therapist work together to identify thoughts, feelings, and conditions that occur before and after the patient’s substance abuse.

This method helps the patient recognize risky behaviors and decisions that could lead to relapse, and provides insights into why the person chose to abuse substances from the beginning.

Some specific techniques employed CBT for addiction therapy include:

  • Addressing patient doubts and fostering motivation to quit substance abuse
  • Addressing subtle emotional or cognitive states
  • Dealing with alcohol and drug availability
  • Development of strategies to avoid risky conditions
  • Development of strategies for dealing with cravings
  • Exploring the positive and adverse consequences of continued drug use
  • Development of problem-solving skills

What Does CBT Treat?

CBT can be used for the treatment of any substance use disorder, including those involving alcohol, opioids (prescription painkillers), benzodiazepines, methamphetamine, cocaine, and more.

CBT is also employed to treat a variety of mental health conditions. People who experience mental illness are a heightened risk of substance abuse and addiction, and indeed, is extremely common for mood disorders such as depression and anxiety to exist in conjunction with drug and alcohol use.

Evidence suggests that CBT it can be an effective treatment for a wide range of mental health conditions, including the following:

  • Anxiety and social anxiety
  • Panic disorder
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Borderline personality disorder
  • Major depressive disorder
  • Eating disorders
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder
  • Phobias such as agoraphobia
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Psychosis
  • Schizophrenia
  • Schizoaffective disorders

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy and Addiction Treatment

CBT is can be extremely effective in the treatment of substance use disorders. While results vary and is very much dependent on motivation, certain interventions have the best likelihood of success. These include the following:

  • Breaking down motivational and cognitive barriers
  • Use of approaches that target maladaptive behaviors
  • Identification of deficits in skills and training

From an evidence-based perspective, CBT is among the most effective approaches to addiction treatment, but it is not the only one. Research has shown that rather than relying on one method, patient outcomes are more likely to be improved when a variety of techniques are employed.

For example, CBT has the potential to be more effective when used in conjunction with say, individual and family counseling and holistic practices such as yoga, meditation, and art and music therapy.

Our center offers CBT for both inpatient and intensive outpatient treatment. Inpatients reside at our center for 30 days or longer while participating in treatment. Outpatients receive similar services, but in a more flexible format – rather than undergoing 24/7 supervision, they reside in a private residence or sober living home and can attend to critical life obligations such as school or work.

Our programs are structured with various components of evidence-based treatment practices and holistic approaches to treatment that provide our patients with the knowledge and tools they need to be successful in their recovery.

If you or your loved one is suffering from substance abuse, please seek help as soon as possible.

Substance Abuse Facts

Substance Abuse Facts 2018 | Midwood Addiction Treatment

A substance use disorder (SUD) is a complex condition that occurs when regular drug or alcohol use results in “clinically and functionally significant impairment” that includes physical and mental health problems and failure to attend to major responsibilities regarding work, school, home, or relationships.

SUD is a broad term that also refers to conditions such as substance abuse and drug or alcohol addiction (alcoholism.) Traditionally, these disorders have been widely viewed as moral failings, under the presumption that those dependent upon psychoactive substances lack willpower or moral fortitude.

Today, most researchers, scientists, physicians and addiction specialists view substance use disorder as a disease – or at least believe that it should be addressed as one. Moreover, it is a chronic, incurable condition that can, however, be effectively treated using various evidence-based therapies and counseling.

What is Addiction?

Addiction is considered to be a lifelong disease characterized by compulsive drug-seeking behavior that persists despite adverse consequences. Initial use is almost always voluntary, but repeated use leads to changes in the brain that impair self-control when it comes to substance use.

These changes are persistent and sometimes permanent, which is why people with addictions are at a very high risk of relapse and returning to substance abuse, sometimes after years of sobriety.

How Substance Abuse Affects the Brain

Substance Abuse Facts | Midwood Addiction Treatment

Substance abuse impacts the reward center of the brain by acting on neurotransmitters releasing mass amounts of “feel good” chemical messengers such as dopamine and serotonin.

This system manages the body’s ability to feel pleasure and increases motivation to repeat behaviors that lead to pleasurable feelings, such as eating or having sex.

However, overstimulation of the brain’s reward center results in a “high” -euphoric feelings that hijack the brain and compel people to continue using substances.

Over time, the brain becomes desensitized to the presence of drugs or alcohol by adjusting itself to the excess dopamine and reducing the corresponding response. This effect is known as tolerance, and when it occurs, the individual is forced to use increasing amounts of the substance in order to achieve the desired effect. Pleasure obtained from otherwise enjoyable activities such as socializing can be adversely affected, as well.

Chronic substance abuse also results in changes to other brain systems and can affect critical functions, including learning, judgment, decision-making, problem-solving memory, stress level, and behavior.

Factors That Contribute to Addiction

Addiction, like most diseases, does not develop in a vacuum. Moreover, there are multiple factors that may contribute to one’s risk of becoming addicted to a psychoactive substance. These include biological, developmental, and environmental determinants.

Biological factors include genetic predispositions that may account for as much as half of a person’s risk for addiction. Also, ethnicity, gender, and co-occurring mental health conditions may also increase one’s risk of drug abuse.

Environmental factors include external influences such as family dynamics, socioeconomic status, early exposure to drugs or alcohol in the home, and the existence of traumatic childhood experiences such as physical or sexual abuse.

Environmental and biological determinants, when combined with developmental stages also affect a person’s risk of substance abuse. Moreover, the earlier the drug or alcohol use is initiating, the greater the chance that it may lead to addiction.

Addiction is Incurable but Treatable

SUDs are not curable, and most recovering substance abusers will be at risk of a relapse for the rest of their lives. However, addiction disorders can be effectively treated and successfully managed long-term.

Research has shown that patients being treated with a combination of behavioral therapy, counseling, group support, and medication-assisted therapy have the best chance of achieving long-term sobriety.

Treatment approaches customized to each patient’s individual factors such as mental health conditions, family and developmental history, and drug use patterns can result in improved outcomes and contribute to a successful, ongoing recovery.

Addiction is Preventable

Critically, substance abuse and addiction are not inevitable, and programs aimed at prevention that involve families, communities, schools, and the media are helpful for reducing drug abuse and addiction.

Although individual and environmental factors tend to affect drug abuse trends, research has shown that drug use is more often avoided when perceived as harmful or unacceptable by society. Indeed, education is crucial to helping people understand the risk of drug abuse. – especially those persons at a heightened risk of addiction, teens and young adults.

Getting More Information
We provide a comprehensive, holistic method to treatment, encompassing a wide array of different evidence-based practices in combination. All of Midwood Addiction Treatment’s primary therapists are either licensed or master’s level clinicians; our programs are structured with various components of evidence-based treatment practices and holistic approaches to treatment that provide our patients with the knowledge and tools they need to be successful in their recovery.

If you or your loved one is suffering from substance abuse, please seek help as soon as possible.

Call us now to learn about our treatment options.


Progress Not Perfection

Outpatient Detox

Moving Forward in Recovery Without Dwelling on Mistakes

Recovery from any serious illness, whether physical or mental/emotional, involves a tremendous amount of patience. The addiction recovery process is no different. Patience requires the acceptance of mistakes and acknowledging that they are a normal part of personal growth.

Hence, the term “Progress Not Perfection” is often used in addiction treatment and 12-step programs to remind those in recovery that while perfection is not attainable, improvement ALWAYS is.

Healing doesn’t happen overnight.

Progress Not Perfection

Addiction is a disease, and while there is no “cure,” sustainable recovery IS possible with a lifelong commitment. Due to chemical and functional changes in the brain, sobriety requires long-term personal and lifestyle changes. Moreover, healing takes time – usually, a great deal of time.

Both a person’s mental/emotional and physical well-being are predicated upon personal development and insight. Embracing sobriety is the first step, but the act of being sober does not change the past nor does it immediately wipe out brain changes or the triggers associated with substance use.

Therefore, recovery is often a case of “two steps forward, one step back.” And that’s okay. Forward momentum is needed to avoid or minimize relapses, and in reality, that’s all anyone needs to continue improving their life and reparation of relationships.

“Changes and progress very rarely are gifts from above. They come out of struggles from below.” ~ Noam Chomsky

“Start out slow if you must. Once you’ve begun, you are already ahead of most people.” ~ G. Edward McDaniel


You aren’t the same as before the addiction, but you aren’t the same as when you were in the throes of addiction, either.

When you engage in sobriety, a wealth of emotions, both bad and good, come spiraling up to the surface of your conscience. Because some of these feelings are difficult to deal with, the temptation to use again can become quite powerful.

But every minute, every day, every week you abstain from using is a victory. If you achieve 30 days and relapse, it doesn’t have to be the end of the line. It’s a learning experience, and how you, as a sentient being, interpret it.

Moreover, you can view a relapse event as a failure, under the presumption that you are weak and can’t handle it – or, you can perceive it as a normal, learnable mistake that can be used to help you avoid the feelings and triggers that led to the relapse in the first place.

According to psychologists, the five stages of change are precontemplation, contemplation, preparation, action, and maintenance. What’s remarkable is this…if you are in recovery, you are already engaging in stage four – action. You are literally 80% of the way to a complete transformation. – remember this.

“If you’re walking down the right path and you’re willing to keep walking, eventually you’ll make progress.” ~ Barack Obama

“Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.” ~ George Bernard Shaw

Recovery requires a mental transformation.

Progress Not Perfection | Midwood Addiction Treatment

By now, you are probably starting to understand how these three components of progress vs. perfection intertwine. Time + changes = transformation. But no transformation occurs without experiencing some setbacks.

Moreover, you have to let go of the idea that recovery is a do-or-die situation, predicated upon how perfectly you can rearrange your life and cope with the emotional aspects that contributed to the addiction. Mental transformation occurs because effort and patience are the basis for that metamorphosis, and people in recovery can lose sight of this fact and quickly become frustrated when setbacks occur.

But acknowledging and celebrating progress helps to remind us that we have made difficult strides and have come a long way from where we once were. You can’t change the past, but you can change the future, and if you falter, all you need to do is learn from those challenges and how to triumph over them in the end.

“Out of perfection nothing can be made. Every process involves breaking something up.” ~ Joseph Campbell

“Instead of waiting for perfection, run with what you do, and fix it along the way… ” ~ Paul Arden

We provide a comprehensive, holistic method to treatment, encompassing a wide array of different evidence-based practices in combination. All of Midwood Addiction Treatment’s primary therapists are either licensed or master’s level clinicians.

Our programs are structured with various components of evidence-based treatment practices and holistic approaches to treatment that provide our patients with the knowledge and tools they need to be successful in their recovery.

If you or your loved one is suffering from substance abuse, please seek help as soon as possible.

Call us now to learn about our treatment options.