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Alcohol and Drug Counseling and Therapy Programs in Southern California

It’s no surprise that people with substance use disorders are often suffering emotionally.  Oftentimes, people start abusing drugs and alcohol in an attempt to mask emotional pain and cope with life. Alcohol and drug counseling along with other forms of therapy can help individuals regain their lives and achieve a lifetime of sobriety. 

Therapeutic treatment centers in Southern California that work with those suffering from addiction usually offer multiple forms of counseling and therapy to form a comprehensive, personalized treatment plan. Talk therapy combined with holistic therapies are a part of addiction treatment plans in order to help individuals that are suffering from addiction uncover their traumas and deal with emotional pain in a healthy, positive way. Here at The Key to Recovery, we provide clients with a variety of therapeutic treatments in Huntington Beach, California. 

Types of Therapies in Alcohol and Drug Counseling 

Cognitive-Behavioral TherapyThere are various types of therapies at our therapeutic treatment center to help individuals overcome substance use disorders. One form of therapy may be more suited for an individual than another. This is particularly true in the case of those suffering from a co-occurring mental illness and substance use disorder. A dual diagnosis, or co-occurring disorder, is when a person suffers from two health disorders at the same time (like addiction and mental illness). 

Both mental illness and substance use disorders affect no two people in the same way. Luckily, talk therapy along with holistic therapies have evolved to provide the most effective form of treatment for people with different co-occurring disorders. 

When choosing what addiction treatment center to attend, it’s best to choose one that contains various different treatment programs and therapies that are specialized by different substances and mental health disorders. Just because treatment doesn’t work initially, doesn’t mean it won’t work at all. Being able to try out different forms of therapy is crucial to healing in the least amount of time possible. 

Talk Therapy 

Psychotherapy (talk therapy) is exactly what it sounds like: talking to a therapist. On a surface level, this may seem unnecessary to those struggling with a substance use disorder. Why should they talk to a therapist when they can speak to individuals that love and care about them? This is what makes talk therapy a great place to start the healing process. 

A therapist or counselor has an empirical, objective view on whatever issue a client at an addiction treatment center has. While it’s important to express struggles with loved ones, at the end of the day, such loved ones aren’t trained in ways that best facilitate lasting sobriety. 

The basis of talk therapy mainly focuses on identifying self-destructive thought patterns and the behaviors that come with them. How a talk therapist will go about this differs per the type of therapy. 

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy 

In the 1960s a psychiatrist at the University of Pennsylvania, Dr. Aaron T. Beck, conducted experiments to confirm the psychoanalytic literature behind the source of depression. What he found was quite different from the research gathered up until that point. Dr. Beck found that depressed patients had automatic, negative thoughts that deeply affected their mental health. 

These thoughts were pessimistic outlooks about the future, the world, and themselves. Also, these thoughts were subconscious in a sense and would happen at random. Without noticing, these depressed patients would subconsciously add these negative thoughts into their schema without a critical eye. So, Dr. Beck found that he could help these patients by helping them consciously recognize these self-destructive thought patterns and negative behaviors in the process. He dubbed this clinical approach cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), or cognitive therapy (CT). 

CBT for Addiction 

Group CounselingIt’s no surprise that many people that use drugs and alcohol are also coping with emotional turmoil and trauma. Depression is one mental illness that commonly co-occurs with addiction. Since CBT was formed with the intention of helping those with depression initially, it’s a suitable form of addiction therapy for those with depression and a co-occurring substance use disorder. In fact, since the inception of CBT, over  2,000 studies confirm that CBT is an effective form of substance use treatment, even on it’s own. 

CBT isn’t just for those with depression and substance use disorders. The process of identifying harmful thought patterns and dissecting why they aren’t true can help anyone that thinks self-destructive thoughts and exhibits self-destructive behaviors. 

Many individuals that suffer from substance use disorders don’t realize that they’re using substances to cope with deeper issues. There is always a thought that comes before substance use. CBT can identify and stop that thought that leads to drug use.  

Dialectical Behavior Therapy 

The word “dialectical” has two meanings. One meaning is a logical dialogue. The other meaning is a discussion with two opposing views to come to an agreement or truth. Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) embodies both of these meanings into its practice. 

In the 1970s, Dr. Marsha Linehan attempted to use CBT to help women suffering from severe mental illnesses. Many of the women that Dr. Linehan was trying to help suffered from chronic suicidal tendencies and self-harm. 

Initially, these women didn’t respond well to CBT because it invalidated their experiences as people dealing with suicide. Thus, DBT focuses less on pushing people to pick up new coping mechanisms and identify thoughts. 

 Instead, DBT asks people to take an external view of negative thoughts that they can’t help thinking about themselves and then note them and accept them. DBT has been particularly helpful in treating people with borderline personality disorders for this reason. 

The meaning behind the word dialectical in DBT combines eastern ideas of mindfulness and western psychoanalytic theory. Thus, DBT asks people to take an external view of thoughts they can’t help but make and then note them and accept them. DBT has been particularly helpful for people with a borderline personality disorder for this reason. 

DBT for Addiction 

DBT is specifically beneficial as a form of drug and alcohol counseling. Research shows that DBT can provide another option for individuals with severe co-occurring disorders that haven’t responded to other forms of treatment in the past. 

People with mental health illnesses cannot always control intrusive thoughts or behaviors no matter how hard they try. DBT for addiction helps individuals accept any intrusive thoughts that may come about. Another way to cope with intrusive thoughts is to use substances.

Holistic Therapy 

Combatting negative physical and spiritual battles can be taxing. Luckily, there is such a thing as holistic therapies. Holistic therapy is the therapeutic practice that treats the whole individual, mind, body, and soul. 

No addiction treatment would be complete without holistic therapies. Holistic therapy has many names, but they all relate to healing the body as a whole. 

Overcoming an addiction is just half the battle to looking and feeling good about yourself. Gain the skills that it takes to build a healthy foundation for lasting recovery. This includes the skills that one gains through holistic therapies. 

There are a variety of non-medical therapies that fall under the umbrella of holistic therapy. Some of these include: 

While holistic therapy is non-medical in nature, numerous studies have proven its efficacy. When individuals at a therapeutic treatment center for addiction engage in holistic therapy, it provides them with healthy coping mechanisms as well as a way to maintain self-care practices. 

Experiential Therapy 

Like the name suggests, experiential therapy is all about regaining what it means to live life to the fullest without drugs and alcohol through enriching experiences. Experiential therapy encompasses many activities from animal-assisted therapy to adventure therapy.

Each experiential therapy activity can be tailored to the preferences of each client at a therapeutic treatment center for addiction. For example, animal lovers may be interested in an activity like equine therapy where they are able to interact with horses. 

Others who want a sense of adrenaline and to witness the majesty of nature may choose to hike or perform some other active form of holistic therapy. Individuals with physical disabilities may choose to forgo hiking and stick with writing therapy. 

Group Counseling 

Holistic TherapyThose with substance use disorders often feel a sense of isolation, like they are going through their recovery journey alone. Group therapy allows individuals suffering from addiction to heal together. Peer support is important to facilitate the healing process as well as giving people an opportunity to grow their support network. Individuals in group counseling/therapy can be there for each other after treatment is over. 

Individual Counseling   

Individual alcohol and drug counseling is just as important as group counseling for individuals who want to overcome their substance use disorders. During individual counseling, a therapist will take the time to give each person a personalized approach. This helps people pinpoint any self-destructive thoughts that they have. This also helps individuals work on what actions could specifically help them maintain sobriety as well as cope with addiction triggers in a positive way. 

Alcohol and Drug Counseling in Southern California 

Addiction therapy is key to lasting recovery. With so many therapeutic options available, there is a form of addiction therapy for each individual attending addiction treatment. Here at The Key to Recovery, we offer talk therapy as well as holistic therapies. That way we can best help our clients overcome their substance use disorders and maintain long-term sobriety. 

Our mission here at The Key to Recovery is more than just getting our clients to achieve initial sobriety. We hope to give each and every one of our clients the tools that they need to lead sober, healthy lives forever. 

Each addiction treatment plan here at The Key to Recovery is individualized as we know that everyone who walks through our doors comes with a different story. For those suffering from addiction in California, don’t lose hope. We’re here to guide you to recovery during each step in your addiction recovery journey. Contact us now to overcome addiction for now and forever. 

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