ADDICTION TREATMENT: LOS ANGELES AND ORANGE COUNTY Though most would associate it with active substance and addiction rather than addiction treatment, Los Angeles and its surrounding areas have come to constitute the most concentrated hub of rehabilitative activity in the world. Over the last two decades, as Southern California has transformed into a health mecca, the number of options in drug and alcohol rehabilitation have multiplied. For addiction treatment, Los Angeles and neighboring areas have become an amazing geographical resource. WHAT IS ADDICTION? Addiction is a debilitating disease of the body and mind. Physically, the affects of addiction are relatively simple to understand. The body grows accustomed to the presence of a foreign substance, coming to expect the constant presence of that substance. With the regular consumption of drugs or alcohol, the body needs more and more of a substance to achieve the desired affect. Sometimes this affect can never be achieved, even when an increased quantity of the drug is ingested. This phenomenon, usually described as increasing tolerance, is a key symptom of physical addiction. As drug use continues, the body’s overall health will deteriorate. Hair thinning or loss, sallow complexion, dark circles under eyes, and gaunt appearance, are a few of the physical traits exhibited by many drug addicts. The other major sign of a physical dependency on drugs or alcohol is the onset of withdrawal symptoms when substances cease to enter the system. Depending on the substance in question, these symptoms range from unpleasant to excruciatingly painful and medically dangerous. Withdrawal from alcohol, though it is considered by many to be less harmful than some illegal drugs, presents risks of seizure and even death when medically unsupervised. Because of the dangerous nature of physically detoxifying the body, it is imperative to undergo this process within medically supervised addiction treatment. Los Angeles rehabilitation programs, as some of the finest in the world, ensure that addicts and alcoholics are safe and as comfortable as possible during this unavoidable first stage of recovery. WHY CAN’T THEY JUST STOP? The mental component of the disease of addiction is less straight forward than the physical, but it is crucial to understand the psychology of addiction, as this is the part of the disease that makes it so deadly. If the physical ramifications of long-term drug abuse are not enough to make a sane person rethink their behavior, the wreckage that drug use creates in a person’s life should be sufficient to provoke a behavioral change. Unfortunately, the mental aspect of addiction drives addicts to continue using drugs even as financial, occupational, legal, and familial consequences spring up around them. The addict mind is so terrified of sobriety that it will protect it’s ability to drink or use above all else, even parents, spouses, and children. Most addicts are people who report having a hard time mentally even before the first drink or drug they ever consumed. Whether they are plagued by anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, OCD, PTSD, or any other psychological abnormality, these individuals tend to feel that, at least in the beginning, alcohol and drugs acted as a medicine for them, making it easier to cope with day-to-day life. However, even if substances provide some sort of insulation from mental turmoil in the short-term, they are simply an anesthetic, not a solution. All of these mental twists remain inside the mind, and bury themselves deeper and deeper as drug use continues. Once addicts decide to get sober, they are forced to face all of the psychological burdens they sought for so long to ignore. In the safe space created by addiction treatment, Los Angeles or elsewhere, addicts area able to gradually heal these old wounds, freeing themselves mentally. Part of the mental addiction is the belief that, even when substances have long since stopped serving their “medicinal” purpose, ceasing to consume them will result in misery and despair. To an addict, there is nothing more terrifying than the prospect of sobering up permanently. However, there comes a point for every addict when life is so miserable that the great unknown of sobriety seems to be a better choice than continuing without addiction treatment. Los Angeles and Orange Counties’ finest rehabilitation facilities offer programs that heal mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually, giving addicts the opportunity to begin anew. CHOOSING THE RIGHT ADDICTION TREATMENT: LOS ANGELES AND ORANGE COUNTY There are many important factors to consider when choosing a rehabilitation program, the first of which is location. When searching locales for addiction treatment, Los Angeles and Orange Counties are a wise place to begin. These areas offer a multitude of treatment options, and the added benefit of the sea and sun, nature’s two most powerful healing forces. For addiction treatment, Los Angeles is a prime choice, but Orange County has a couple of perks that LA can’t offer. The Orange County area boasts the most vibrant 12-step community in the world, hosting more AA, NA and other meetings per week than any other single location on the globe. Because of the tight-knit recovery community in Orange County, those who relocate to this area for treatment will find that they run into sober friends and acquaintances everywhere they go. GENDER-SPECIFIC ADDICTION TREATMENT: LOS ANGELES AND ORANGE COUNTY Another important choice to consider when selecting a treatment program is the gender breakdown of the facility. Gender-specific programs are particularly beneficial for female addicts and alcoholics, as studies have shown that women profit from an intimate and nurturing recovery environment. The safe space created by an all-women’s program allows for a great deal of personal growth, essential to a productive treatment experience. THE JOURNEY OF RECOVERY Even with treatment, addiction is a chronic disease that can never be fully cured. However, building a strong foundation in treatment makes a world of difference in an addict’s odds of staying sober indefinitely. A successful treatment experience sets the stage for the lifelong journey of recovery, giving addicts the desire and courage to change themselves and better their lives. Safe Harbor Treatment Center for Women in Costa Mesa, California, customizes each woman’s treatment plan to accommodate past trauma she may have experienced in her years of drinking. Safe Harbor’s treatment environment, a small community of warm-hearted women, ensures that those who are coming to terms with trauma feel safe and secure. Safe Harbor’s treatment program allows women from all backgrounds to come together as they strive to leave alcohol behind and create better lives for themselves. If you, or someone you know is looking for a second chance at life, call us today. We are here to help.