Monthly Archives: October 2017

earning trust in addiction recovery

Earning Trust In Addiction Recovery

Just saying sorry is not going to cut it. And really, deep down you know it—it shouldn’t. You have done things, said things, lied about things in your life. You lost the trust of the people who care the most about you. Of course, you were also giving into an addiction on a regular basis and it took the central role of your life hijacking everything you thought and wanted. Still, how can anyone trust you again?

The reason you are in a situation where you have lost trust is that, most likely, you repeatedly hurt people who put their trust in you. You might have stolen from them, neglected them, put them last in your life. And not just once but over and over.

So when you want to earn trust back with people in your life, the key word is “earn.” It won’t be easy. And it will cost you. But it can happen. People in recovery from addiction can be trustworthy people. They can deserve the faith of their friends and family. Here are some important skills to focus on to earn trust again from your loved ones.

Give trust time

First off, remember, you are not going to earn trust overnight. You lost your loved one’s trust over a series of actions and events. So it is going to take a series of actions and events to regain their faith in you. In fact, if you lied to someone three times it might even take five honest interactions for your friend or family member begin to feel like they can begin to give you a chance. Give it time.

Be consistent

With that said, don’t be a flake. Make sure you are telling the truth and you are doing it on a consistent basis. If you tell the truth three times, then lie once, all of the trust you have built will be lost. And it will be harder for those close to you to believe in your personal transformation. It’s tough, but important. Be consistent in your life and follow-through.

Make amends

Apologizing is fine. But making amends means doing something about the wrongs you have committed. When you make amends, you compensate for how you have treated someone. Did you miss rent because you spent it on drugs? Pay your roommates back. Or at least make it clear that you intend to pay them back with a payment plan. Making amends includes actions to your apology. Fix what you broke. It’s as simple as that.

Do right

Part of being a trustworthy person is being someone who simply does the right thing in all circumstances. You may have stigmatized these kinds of people in the past: goody-two-shoes, Pollyanna, Boy Scout. Whatever it is, this is who you are now. Being above reproach is a good state to be in. This is how you earn trust. And yes people actually do this—they do right or try to do right in all situations. Walk the extra three feet to throw your trash away. Keep your temper at bay while you are dealing with a jerk at the store. Help an old lady across the street. Be a boy scout. There are definitely worse things you could be.

Don’t expect a reward

If you are being a trustworthy person simply to be noticed as such, then your motivation is wrong. And it won’t get you very far in earning trust back.

Wait a minute, you might be thinking, I thought I was doing this for a reward: trust.

That’s the tough part. A trustworthy person is a person who is being trustworthy simply because it is right and it is good. That needs to be your reward. Remember, recovery goes deep. It is a total transformation. If you were not the kind of person who did the right thing before, look where that got you. Embrace goodness for goodness’ sake. It’s authentic, and it’s how you earn trust.

Let your yes be yes

This last tip takes “doing right” one step further. It is the step that will outshine most everything else: be a person of your word. If you say you are going to do something, then do it. This is the development of personal character. It is the bedrock of all the trust you will receive. Never stray from that centering aspect of your recovery. You are a person of your word now. Believe that, and live by it.

Of course, you can’t guarantee that this will work with everyone. Some people will just never be able to trust you again. In that situation, you simply have to move on. If you are consistently living by these trustworthy guidelines that is all you can do. And you can only be the best version of yourself. Everything else is out of your control.

Reaching Out

Have you lost the trust of your family and friends as a result of your addiction to drugs or alcohol? The truth is, if you have not gotten treatment for a substance use disorder, you will simply continue to hurt those around you. Before you can rebuild trust, you have to take the first step of reaching out for help.

However, you might be surprised. This one action is pretty significant. Your friends and family love you and want to trust you.

Get help today and give them a reason to hope and trust again. Call SoCal Detox today for a consultation with one of our addiction specialists: 888-590-0777.

sober halloween

5 Sober Halloween Ideas

So you find yourself here at the end of October, newly in recovery, and you are still not exactly sure how to have fun without drugs or alcohol. That will eventually come very naturally, and won’t even be an issue. But at the beginning it is a new skill to cultivate. So, it’s true, this Halloween will not be a loud, blathering obnoxious bore. But what will you be? That’s hard to tell. The first thing to know is that you are not alone. This is a common feeling amongst people who find sobriety. Of course, it’s okay to give it a little time. But if you are feeling up for it, get some of your friends in recovery together and try one of these options this year. Here are 5 sober Halloween ideas.

1. Go to a Haunted House

Don’t just settle for telling ghost stories; try living one by visiting a haunted house. If you are here in San Clemente, California, here is a list of spooky attractions in the Orange County area. Or make one yourself. If you have a oprn garage or attic, try transforming it into a haunted house with a little DIY ingenuity that’s sure to scare the neighbors.

2. Have a Sober Halloween Relay Race

Hosting your own party is an excellent way to have a sober Halloween because you can control the guest list in terms of positive influences. Not only does it allow you to choose whether or not to serve alcohol, when you throw a party yourself it means you get to enjoy all your favorite foods. Add some Halloween spirit to the party with seasonal relay activities like apple bobbing, touch-and-feel boxes, and a friendly game of hide and seek or the classic “ghost in the graveyard.”

3. Carve a Pumpkin

Pumpkins aren’t just good for pie, they are a great way to decorate a house and a reason to have a couple of friends over for a pumpkin carving evening. Celebrate a sober Halloween by letting out your inner Michelangelo … or Banksy. Carve a face or a detailed design, then show off your handiwork by displaying it on your porch or window. You can come up with categories and award prizes to the scariest, strangest, or most complex pumpkin designs. The best part is that when you’re done displaying the pumpkins, you can roast the seeds for snacking on later.

4. Have a Halloween Movie Marathon

Freak yourself out a little bit by watching classic Halloween movies like the original 1978 Halloween film or the cult hit The Blair Witch Project. If you don’t want to watch the movies alone, invite any friends or family that are up for it and try ranking the movies from creepy to truly horrifying. Bravo’s list of the 100 Scariest Movies is a good place to start.

5. Pass Out Candy – Trick or Treating

It just wouldn’t be Halloween without free candy. So find yourself a house or friend’s place that gets lots of traffic and make a night of it. Seeing all the kids and what they came up with is more fun than you might realize. It also gives you an excuse to get in the spirit of things. Go all out with face paint and elaborate props, or if you’re inspired at the last minute, there are simple costume ideas that only require clothes you probably already have. Try group costumes like the Mario Kart characters or the Spice Girls. Handing out candy is a quieter way to spend a sober Halloween while still enjoying the trick-or-treat experience.

Try It

The key is to remember is that there are plenty of options. The only one you should ignore is the one that says, “Nah.” A person in early recovery is in a stage of rediscovery. Try new things. At this time when you are presented with new activities, you should be saying, “Yes” more often than you are saying, “No.” The good news is your world is no longer limited by figuring out if alcohol or drugs will be available and what you need to do to make sure you can get a fix. Which also means you will be a whole lot more present for those places you are going to be having your fun.

Call Us

The scariest part of Halloween is being caught in a cycle of addiction. If you or a loved one are afraid of Halloween for very good reason—watching yourself of someone you care about walking a dangerous path of addiction—and you need help or guidance, call us today. Our addiction specialists are ready to help you find the help you need: 888-590-0777.

group therapy for addiction treatment

5 Kinds of Group Therapy for Addiction Treatment

Since detox is the very first step in addiction treatment, in many situations, group therapy doesn’t even enter the picture. It is seen as a deeper aspect of recovery therapy. However, at SoCal Detox (an orange county detox in San Clemente, California) we have seen so many benefits to group therapy in detox that we make it part of our clinical program.

Because of this, along with getting rid of the substances in your system and breaking their hold on your physical body, you are preparing for long-term healing with a powerful treatment tool. In order to help you dig deep, we offer group and individual therapy in order to both kick-start your recovery process and to help identify the best next step for your recovery care.

What Does Group Therapy for Addiction Treatment Look Like?

In long-term addiction treatment, you will be presented with a variety of group therapy types. Knowing the facts about each one will better inform you on what you will be able to discover in each. We’re going to be going over the 5 main group therapies and how they are effective in your treatment.

  1. 1. Psychoeducational Group Therapy

Psychoeducation teaches problem-solving and communication skills and provides education and resources in a supportive environment. In a group setting, it is cooperative and community oriented.

This treatment method is effective because it informs residents about disorders that they may have and the many ways that they can successfully manage them. For example, a therapy session could educate a heroin user about the harmful effects that the drug has on the body. Some of the things that the resident learns to manage are their feelings, handling conflict, overcoming abuse, keeping physically healthy, and engaging with family. This treatment is based on some of the principles of cognitive behavioral therapy, which can also be a type of group therapy.

  1. 2. Cognitive Behavioral Group Therapy (CBT)

In short, CBT effectively treats health disorders by changing the way a user thinks then behaves about their addiction. In other words, the treatment’s goal is to change their pattern of thinking by making them aware when they are making negative choices. The result is a positive change in behavior through reinforcement.

For example, a therapist may use talk therapy (common use of CBT) to bring out a time of extreme negativity that the user experienced surrounding addiction. Together the group delves into the emotions and thoughts that contribute to the behavior and learn how to modify their actions and practice. This is just one of the many techniques used in cognitive group therapy.

  1. 3. Skill Development Groups

This therapy is effective because it teaches users the skills that are needed to refrain from chemical dependency. In this therapy, psychoeducational and cognitive-behavioral elements are incorporated for practical results. When people suffer from substance abuse, often they have a deficit in interpersonal skills. This is one reason a skill development group is so ideal. It naturally moves residents into working with one another, giving and receiving positive reinforcement, and generally building core proficiencies for returning to society.

  1. 4. Support Groups

These groups are effective because they provide emotional sustenance that can help an addict make a lifestyle change to reach a long-term goal. Overall, they have the ability to strengthen positive emotions, which later provide positive outcomes over one’s life. As well support groups will form the bedrock for social support outside of treatment. In a rehab, a support group is training for long-term recovery in community.

  1. 5. Interpersonal Process Groups

These groups effectively use psychodynamics to promote healing in a person’s life. Less focused on the content of a particular session, the purpose this type of therapy focuses on the present, noticing signs of people recreating their past in what is going on between and among members of the group. Overall, this technique overviews developmental issues and changes dysfunctional and destructive behavioral patterns.

Why Group Therapy for Detox?

Good group therapy is a foundational aspect of addiction treatment. In this environment, residents are able to explore their thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. As well they are able to learn some foundational communication skills. There is also a certain amount of cooperation necessary and conflict resolution involved in group therapy. All of these contribute to a holistic recovery treatment method that makes up a solid program.

Find Recovery at SoCal

At SoCal Detox, our clinical program for residents is carefully crafted to offer multiple aspects of therapeutic care as well as offer individualized attention for each person. If you or a loved one are looking for addiction treatment that considers the whole person and is created for lasting recovery, call us today. Our addiction specialists are ready to answer your questions and give you real solutions: 888-590-0777.

deadly drugs 2017

America’s 5 Deadly Drugs

5 Deadly Drugs in America Today

People talk about gateway drugs as a cause for addiction. People talk about addictive personalities. Then here is background, trauma, and even genetic proclivity. Whatever the reason a person begins to experiment with drugs and alcohol, once they are caught in the web, there is no quick and easy way out. All evidence points to a minimum of intensive treatment to help them get free. Of course, this is in the best scenario.

In the worst situation, there is physical danger and a high likelihood of death as a result of drug abuse. It is not a good idea to give a hierarchy to any addictive substance, because what is easily overlooked by one person could be dangerous for another. Part of the danger of these substances is their addictive potential. The rest is simply the fact that without help, people with drug addictions will eventually find themselves in serious trouble. Whatever the case, based on overdose statistics (from the CDC), we can identify five of the deadliest drugs in America.

1. Opioids (Natural, Synthetic, Semi-synthetic)

It is not called the opioid crisis for nothing. Towering over all other drugs are the network of drugs called opioids. Opioids are going to account for over 30,000 overdose deaths in 2017. Fentanyl is a particularly deadly one; however, this family of pain killing, highly addictive drugs are responsible for an astronomical number of overdoses.

2. Heroin

Heroin, the number-one killer in the singular drug category, is technically an opiate. Heroin is often considered to be the most physically addictive street drug. If a user attempts to quit, they will suffer a week of agonizing physical and psychological symptoms. It’s estimated that between 300,000 and 500,000 people in the US suffer from heroin addiction. Overdoses on heroin are common, and they are often fatal. More than 15,000 people in the United States died of a heroin overdose last year.

3. Methadone

Yes, Methadone is also a synthetic opioid. But it was kept out of the first count because of its danger as a singular deadly drug. So the top three most dangerous drugs in America in 2017 are in the opioid/opiate camp. Combine those together and you’ve got an epidemic on your hands.

4. Crack/Cocaine

Cocaine is a strong stimulant that is highly addictive. After the drug wears off, the user becomes depressed. The drug is made even more addictive by the fact that its effects are very brief.

The substance can cause damage to the brain and cardiovascular system. In fact, users sometimes experience a heart attack the first time they use the drug. It’s estimated that cocaine will cause up to 10,000 deaths this year in the US. In addition, it’s estimated that 21 million people in the US have taken the drug.

5. Alcohol

While alcohol is legal, it is still a leading killer. As well, it’s the most common cause of substance use disorder. In addition to being psychologically and physically addictive, it can cause an overdose known as alcohol poisoning. Beyond that, an estimated 88,000 people die from alcohol related causes, annually! Car accidents, violence, and alcohol related long-term sickness, and so much more—you can see why it is considered one of the deadliest drugs in America. Today, around 30 percent of adults in the US have had some form of Alcohol Use Disorder.

Other deadly drugs:

6. Crystal Meth

Crystal meth is a powerful stimulant, and it can cause hallucinations and delusions. Users may become unable to care for themselves as a result their addiction. This can cause them to neglect their oral hygiene and begin losing teeth—something commonly called meth mouth.

In addition, the drug damages the brain. This damage can cause the user to struggle to experience pleasurable emotions without it.

It’s one of the most addictive substances known. Users often remain continuously under the influence of the drug for several days or longer. Users are also highly susceptible to overdose. Addiction to crystal meth is quite widespread, and as many as 600,000 people in the US have used it in the past month. There were more than 7,500 fatal overdoses last year.

7. Bath Salts

Bath salts are powerful stimulants, and they can have alarming side effects. In fact, they often cause psychosis, violent behavior, and heart attacks. Furthermore, users who consume bath salts generally have no idea what substance they are ingesting. There are numerous substances sold as bath salts, and they all have their own unique set of dangers. There were 22,000 emergency room visits in 2011 related to bath salts.

What Can We Do?

We can help people find recovery. This is where SoCal Detox in Orange County California comes in. We walk with you or your loved one through the first crucial stage of addiction recovery and become your advocate to help you find the next step of treatment for lasting recovery that works for you. We are in a crisis. But there is hope for anyone willing to take the first step.

If you or a loved one need help finding freedom from an addiction, please call one of our addiction specialists today, 888-590-0777.

sober social life

Alcohol and a Social Life

There is no way around it, drinking is a social activity. If that’s not obvious to you, just try telling your social circle you have quit (or are thinking about giving it up). Their response will reveal what’s going on here. Silence. Subdued encouragement. Passive alienation. Hidden resentment. Open aggression. What’s going on here?

The problem is easy: you giving up booze messes with their lives.

False Social Life Foundation

It actually has very little to do with you or your decision. Never mind the fact that alcohol was killing you and alienating your family and bringing you to the brink of destruction. Admitting that alcohol is dangerous and addictive is countercultural and has implications that most would rather not think about.

In so many people’s minds, alcohol is the main source of personal and social happiness. And when one person stops, this action calls into question a precarious shared, albeit false, foundation. And this is a very serious problem.

Not Drinking Is a Social Statement

The truth is that many people rely heavily on alcohol for their social comfort and as their source of fun. In fact, many people are afraid to quit for that single reason: without alcohol, they won’t have fun anymore. 

There are a couple of things about this.

Someone has told us that alcohol is the source of fun and happiness.

Wow. When did we let that happen? How did we let that lie become our truth?

Before you ever drank alcohol you didn’t miss it. You were happy. And you didn’t know it but you were free—unchained to a substance that dictated your life.

A Dangerous Source

Just to understand the absurdity of this idea, if we truly believed it and chased it just a little bit, we would come to the conclusion that a person with limitless access to booze and can drink all day every day should be the happiest amongst us. How fun does that sound? Not very. Also, how many heavy drinkers are truly the happiest amongst us? We all know at least one person who drinks frequently and in great quantities and is still profoundly empty and unhappy. Maybe you are one of them yourself (or were one at one point).

Things are not fun because of alcohol. YOU create fun. It is your presence and your connection to the environment and the other people wherever you choose to be.

False Options

Once we have given alcohol a significant place in our lives, we think there are only two options available to us:

  1. 1. Give it up and live a life of boredom and misery in without alcohol, or …
  2. 2. Continue drinking and pretend there are no consequences

Most people choose option two. And for people with substance use disorder, this is a slippery slope that leads to even worse problems such as loss of family, alienation of all our loved ones, physical deterioration, financial destitution, even early death. How does option two sound at this point?

However, there is a third option.

The Third Option

Get help. This sounds trite for the serious issue, but really it is the only option once alcohol addiction has taken hold. (Not sure you are addicted? Use this resource and make a self-assessment.)

Of course, you are afraid that treatment will work. And then there goes all fun in your life. This is the big lie. Fun still exists without alcohol! In fact, it gets better. Your brain is currently hijacked by the chemical addiction. You are actually brainwashed. You physically cannot understand the idea of fun without alcohol because your body has been rewired to experience that. It’s time to get your wires back in place.

And yes, some of your drinking buddies will leave. But your real friends will stick around.

And you are going to have time and desire to chase some of the things you love. This will result in connections with people who have common interests that aren’t alcohol-related. And all of this will snowball into a life that you forgot was even possible. And all the sudden you will find yourself again.

We Can Offer Guidance

Are you ready to take the first step to being free from the lies of alcohol addiction? SoCal Detox is a premier Orange County detox facility that can help you or your loved one bring true fun back to life. Please call us today; one of our addiction specialists will help you walk through every aspect of your options. And no matter what, we will help you find the treatment that works for you. Call us today: 888-590-0777.

support a loved one in detox

How to Support a Loved One In Detox

Deciding to go into detox and treatment for a drug or alcohol use disorder is a profound, life-changing decision. This is the point where someone suffering with addiction to drugs or alcohol can finally take stock and begin to turn their life around.

Friends and family often want to support their loved one in this early stage of their journey but aren’t sure how. There are numerous things loved ones can do to support someone entering residential detox, both during their treatment and after they have taken the next step. Here are a few of them.

Be Emotionally Supportive

Before a person enters detox and addiction treatment, their loved ones have had to carefully straddle difficult line between being supportive and unintentionally enabling addictive behavior. The non-enabling love might have included cutting off financial support, not providing the loved one with a car or a place to stay while drunk or high, or not bailing the loved one out if they got into trouble with the law. (Here are more ways to make sure you are not enabling an addict.)

But once a loved one is in detox, their support can look a bit more traditional.

Detox and residential treatment can be lonely, overwhelming, and challenging. Often visits during detox are not advised. There is too much going on and the physical aspects take nearly all the resident’s attention. However, visiting a loved one in residential treatment can help them feel less alone. During visits, loved ones can play board games or just sit and talk with the recovering addict. Don’t try to force your loved one into heavy conversations about their thoughts and feelings, but let them know you are always available to talk when they need to.

Having a strong social support system is critical in recovery, and often just knowing you are around makes a world of difference.

Be Informed

Learning about how substance use disorder forms, its classification as a mental illness, as well as how it is treated can help family members and friends support a recovering addict. This understanding helps battle common stereotypes and stigma as well as offer insight on the activity that can help and what can hinder a recovering addict.

It is also good to know what happens in detox treatment, which can be different for drugs or alcohol. As well as what is going to happen after detox and what your friend of family member will experience in residential treatment and the other aftercare options. All of this information will provide the basis to help keep the recovering addict accountable once they are out of treatment, as well as give you the tools and understanding to help your loved one build a new life of sobriety.

Get Involved

There’s no better way to show one’s support to a recovering addict than a willingness to be part of the recovery process. Many drug and alcohol treatment facilities offer ways in which family members can get involved. Attending family therapy sessions, family educational programs, or 12-step meetings, are all great ways for family members to get involved with their loved one’s treatment.

Take Care of Yourself

It’s important for loved ones to take care of themselves while they support a recovering addict. Attending support groups such as Al-Anon, Co-Anon, Nar-Anon, or Families Anonymous is a good way for family members and friends to get the care and community they need.

After Detox and Residential Treatment

People recovering from a substance use disorder need a lot of support when they return home. Loved ones can help by reinforcing the importance of sticking with the program—attending 12-step meetings regularly, continuing with outpatient therapy, and connecting with their sober community.

As well, family and friends can take the extra step by creating and providing social opportunities that don’t involve alcohol or drugs. For instance, family members and friends can invite their loved one over for dinner, to go see a movie, go for a hike or bike ride, or grab a coffee, so they don’t have to deal with temptation or cravings. As well this kind of substance-free fun is a new skill for a person coming out of rehab needs to cultivate.

Support for a Future

Entering detox is an amazing first step for those suffering with a drug or alcohol use disorder to get the help they need. It can be terrifying and overwhelming, but once they have made the important movement toward recovery, your loved one will benefit from your care and support.

If you or your loved one is considering getting treatment, please call us today. We are available to go over all your options and the best way to find the right individualized treatment for your loved one. Call us today for more information, 888-590-0777.

fear of going to rehab

Afraid of Going to Rehab


“Don’t let the fear of what could happen make nothing happen.”

It’s human nature to avoid pain and seek pleasure. We sit on the comfortable chair rather than stand. We put off doing our term paper until the last minute. We eat the piece of cake rather than go to the gym. People who have developed an addiction to drugs or alcohol may know this the best. It is one of the driving forces in the life of an addict: to seek pleasure in order to numb our pain. Of course, simultaneously, this reveals the real suffering deep inside. The pleasure/pain principle can keep a person shackled to the chains of their substance for years, even when they have recognized its power for destruction in their lives. They need to avoid pain and find pleasure, no matter what the cost.

Ultimately a person who knows it’s time to get clean but doesn’t do it is afraid of one or more possibilities. And this is a common aspect of addiction treatment. This fear takes precedence over the long-term pleasure possible and causes them to do nothing—except stay in their addiction. So here are 4 common fears and some hope if you are experiencing any of them and looking for the path to recovery.

1. Afraid of the Shame

As a society, people look down at those who have abused drugs over the years. This is somewhat obvious. However, the war on drugs has helped bring about a serious stigma that caught a lot of good people in the crossfire. Certainly, drug and alcohol abuse are contributing factors to criminal activities, violence, even death. However, an individual looking for help is not the problem. Even so, once they are connected to drug or alcohol use, they risk the stigma so much so that they fear losing their job, friends, and family.

Hope: Though there is certainly stigma involved in admitting drug addiction, the only reality of who you are lies with you. You have a disease that has altered your brain. You are not a bad person. In fact, the simple act of looking for help shows you have a propensity for good. No one can make you believe this. You may have to simply push through the shame. However, you could be surprised by the grace of your immediate support. Going to an employer or family member is often met with gratitude and encouragement. You might think you are hiding your current habits, but the people in your life probably see more than you think. Hearing you are looking for help would likely be welcome news to them.

Don’t let the fear of possible shame stop you from acting. Your life depends on it.

2. Afraid of the Pain

Detoxing your body from the physical dependence it’s built up over the years can leave you with some pretty uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms. This is simply true. Withdrawal symptoms vary depending on how long a person has been addicted and what they are addicted to. They range from anything as minimal as sweating and shivering to nausea, seizures, hallucinations, and more. The fear of this pain is often what keeps people from looking for help.

Hope: It is true, detoxing from a substance you have been addicted to can be painful and even dangerous. The withdrawals can be intense and without proper supervision, can produce life-threatening situations. However, this is where a professional, medically supervised detox comes in. At a detox such as this, you will be administered medication to help alleviate the discomfort, and you will have around-the-clock supervision (especially the first 24 hours) to make sure your vitals are okay. Even though it does make a difference, it’s not just the pain. If you are considering detoxing from drugs or alcohol, make sure you have professionals involved. It could save your life.

Don’t let the fear of treatable pain stop you from acting. Your life depends on it.

3. Afraid It Won’t Work

Relapses happen. And sometimes those who have gone through them, again and again, feel completely alienated from the possibility of recovery. They believe treatment simply won’t work for them. That they have tried so many times, nothing will ever help. Others have never even tried to quit because they feel like sobriety is simply impossible for them. They can’t imagine life without their substances.

Hope: The best thing for you to hear if you are in one of these categories is, simply: “Recovery is possible.” With the right treatment, recovery happens. And millions of people have felt like you do. Those same people have found a new life. It is such a desperate situation to believe that there is no help (especially after multiple relapses). But the truth is you can do it. There is no single recovery approach that works for everyone. The key is to find the best recovery solution for you and never give up.

*SoCal Detox can help you with both of those. Please call us and let us help you find the treatment that will work for you: 888-590-0777.

Don’t let the fear of possible failure stop you from acting. Your life depends on it.

4. BEST REASON: Afraid to Confront the Real Issues

This is the best reason to be afraid. Because yes. Recovery involves digging deep into your personal issues. Detoxing then going through therapy will uncover painful memories, anxieties, and possible trauma that you’ve had in your life for years. There is no way around this. Lasting recovery comes when you do good, hard work on yourself. You are currently using drugs to take care of the problems you have in your personal life. Drugs and alcohol don’t make the problems go away. In fact, they make them worse. They are putting your life in danger.

Hope: It’s time to choose recovery. The only way to handle the problems in your life is to confront them head-on. If this does not happen, you will always be a shell of who you were meant to be. It’s up to you.

Don’t let the fear of yourself stop you from acting. Your life depends on it.


Call us today. One of our addiction specialists can help you understand these fears and answer all your questions about your treatment options at SoCal Detox: 888-590-0777.

what is substance use disorder

What Is Substance Use Disorder?


Language is important. How we see things, their importance, and their influence is directly connected to what we name them.

Where addiction is concerned, the stigma of the disease is often enough to keep a person from seeking treatment. Admitting to struggling with addiction means a person is akin to putting themselves at risk of losing their job, their family, the respect of their community, and more.

Even though it is a disease, the possible disgrace of being labeled an “addict” is a heavy burden. This one reason to begin to change our language.

Beyond that, the better we define addiction, the better we can treat it and make a difference in the lives of everyone affected.

Accurate Definition

The American Psychiatric Association (APA) compiles the DSM, which is the official guideline for all mental disorders (the current one is the DSM-5). In 2013 they began using the term Substance Use Disorder (SUD) to better name and define the disease of addiction. The APA didn’t make the name change simply to revise semantics. The description is intended to provide a more accurate definition of what users are struggling with.

There are eight specific categories of substance use disorder, these include the use of marijuana, opioids, alcohol, inhalants, stimulants, depressants, hallucinogens, and even tobacco. The actual diagnosis of the disorder comes after a thorough and careful examination of a person and an assessment of their symptoms.

What Constitutes Substance Use Disorder?

A doctor must confirm the presence of specific issues that indicate a serious disorder that requires equally serious treatment. There are 11 symptoms are examined to make a reliable diagnosis of the disorder. The presence of at least two of these symptoms indicates a substance use disorder. The severity is graded: mild, moderate, or severe.

Mild: The presence of 2 to 3 symptoms.
Moderate: The presence of 4 to 5 symptoms.
Severe: The presence of 6 or more symptoms.

The Symptoms

  1. 1. Taking the substance in larger amounts or for longer than you intended
  2. 2. Wanting to cut down or stop using the substance but not being able to do it
  3. 3. Spending a lot of time getting, using, or recovering from use of the substance
  4. 4. Cravings and urges to use the substance
  5. 5. Substance use severely impacts your responsibilities at work, home, or school
  6. 6. Continuing to use even when it causes problems in social situations and personal relationships
  7. 7. Giving up or greatly reducing important social, occupational, or recreational activities in preference to substance use
  8. 8. Using substances again and again even when it causes dangerous situations
  9. 9. Continuing to use even when you know you have a physical or psychological problem that could have been caused or made worse by the substance
  10. 10. Needing more of the substance to get the effect you want (tolerance)
  11. 11. Development of withdrawal symptoms, which can be relieved by taking more of the substance

Major Issues

Taking the above list into consideration, it is pretty clear how substance use disorder completely devastates a person’s life (and the lives of those close to him or her). Marriages, friendships, and business relationships can suffer dramatically when a person succumbs to addictive behavior. The individual could even slip into a life of isolation separating him/herself from others as substance use takes precedence over everything else.

Physicians look at numerous behavioral displays to determine if the actions fall under the established criteria. Someone whose substance use contributes to consistently missing workdays, engaging in risky behavior, or unable to function because of substance use likely has a disorder.

Impaired control might be the most noticeable to family members. Impaired control refers to when the user wants to quit or reduce his/her consumption but is not capable of doing so. A preoccupation with drug or other substance use overcomes all other desires and wants. When this happens, it may seem that a loved one has become a completely different person.

Away From the Stigma

The important thing to remember is that drugs and alcohol change the brain. This is why it can be classified as a disease. Someone with a substance use disorder is not a bad, lazy, or unlawful person. Drugs and alcohol manipulate the brain’s structure and how it works. The person is in there, but their life is completely influenced by the effects of this disease. And treatment is absolutely necessary for any kind of recovery to be possible. However, many times people with addictions are too ashamed or afraid to reach out for help.

SoCal Detox steps into this space with the first crucial step to help you or your loved one. With us, there is no judgment, only a strategy and specific care to help you take the steps towards lasting recovery. When you come to us for help, we are able to assess the degree of your disorder and guide you through all the aspects of addiction recovery.

If you believe you or a loved one is suffering from substance use disorder, please call us. One of our addiction specialists will offer an immediate assessment and help you understand what your next step should be. Call today: 888-590-0777.

conduct an intervention

How to Conduct an Intervention

Quick Look: How to Conduct an Intervention:

  1. Have an overarching plan in mind with concrete steps
  2. Establish specific talking points before intervening
  3. Carry out an accurate information collection process
  4. Always have a follow-through plan

When someone in our lives is addicted to drugs or alcohol, the mixture of pain, grief, anguish, fear, confusion, and loss are wound deeply within our souls. We know we have to do something or risk losing our loved one forever. But what? What are our options?

What is commonly called an “intervention” is basically a systematic, structured way to talk to someone you love about their need for help. This is such an important step because often a person with substance use disorder will not begin to look for recovery on their own. They need someone who loves them enough to take the risk of speaking up.

There are certainly professionals who can come in and handle this for you, but it can be expensive. This guide is for those who are looking for the best way to conduct an intervention on their own.

*Note: if you are looking to hire an interventionist, call one of our addiction specialists, and we can help you find the best one for your needs: 888-590-0777.

Effective Intervention

When it comes to interventions, there is no denying it: there is a right way and a wrong way to go about things. Though an intervention can be one of the most effective ways to help a person in your family or friend circle resolve some of their biggest issues safely and effectively, going about it the wrong way can be extremely counterproductive.

The following are the most important things to keep in mind in order to ensure that any intervention you carry out will be as effective as possible. And remember, the goal here is to get the person help. We are not looking for apologies, for owning up to mistakes, or feelings of guilt. None of these things will help a person take that first step.

1. Have an overarching plan in mind with concrete steps

Whatever your most ideal outcome for intervening may be, you will definitely want to identify it and have a systematic plan in place in order to see that outcome through. Even though different interventions will oftentimes call for different specific approaches to be made, the last thing that you want to do is wing it. Make sure that the entire process is broken down into a number of steps that keep it consistently directed towards the realization of a well-defined outcome. The more organized that your plan is, the better the chance that there will be for the final plan to succeed. Without an end in mind, your intervention could default into a grip session that alienates everyone involved.

For example: Overarching goal: Loved one agrees to professional help (detox then residential treatment). Help our loved one admit to a problem and agree to the specific treatment center. Ideally, our loved one would be in detox/treatment by the end of the day tomorrow.

2. Establish specific talking points before intervening

Before holding any interventions, you will want to make sure all the talking points have been laid out in advance as clearly as possible. Just as the overall intervening progress plan should be laid out in a series of steps, you should make sure that every individual in the meeting has all of the most prominent points of interest organized into exactly how to bring them up in an organized fashion.

Though no successful intervention should be framed like an interrogation, knowing exactly what points are going to be touched on in advance will make the entire intervening process that much more smoothly.

Some points to consider:

  • I love you and am here for you
  • Addiction is a disease that needs treatment
  • Recovery is possible and professional treatment works
  • I believe in you and your journey

3. Carry out an accurate information collection process

In order to make sure that all interventions are kept as relevant as possible, it is essential that the information collection process is as thorough as possible. There can’t be any information used to support a compelling argument that is inaccurate or flat-out wrong. Specific dates and numbers should be taken into account as accurately as possible. The more that interventions hinge on objective and specific facts, the better the chance that any potential solutions reached can be realistically enacted. Make sure you have information specific to the substance your loved one uses. Do your research on what an addiction treatment plan looks like. At the very minimum, know what these three parts of treatment consist of:

4. Always have a follow-through plan

Whatever topics are covered while you’re intervening, it is essential to make sure that the follow-up process is just as thorough as all of the other phases of the process that preceded it. Even if the interventions themselves are very enlightening, their overall quality will only be equal to the level of diligence in following through. Come ready with a concrete plan in place to systematically follow up on each and every key point that was covered.

At SoCal Detox, we can help you with that plan. Call us today and we can walk you through everything you will need to make an immediate transition from intervention straight to detox then residential treatment.

Recovery for your loved one is possible. Please call us, and we will help you take the right steps for your loved one today: 888-590-0777.