Craving a New Life from Newark, New Jersey?
Newark is the largest city in the Garden State of New Jersey. It is a diverse city, which is a microcosm of the salad bowl demographic of our country. As with any city, however, there are a few bad apples that find their way into the bunch. During the year 2015, in New Jersey alone, 15,673 people were admitted for substance abuse treatment for alcohol, according to New Jersey’s Department of Health Services. Alcoholism is a problem that is crippling our country. According to The Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 88,000 people die every year from excessive alcohol use. Additionally, according to Drug Free World, 2.5-million Americans received treatment for issues with alcohol in 2005. In short, alcoholism is an epidemic that is facing our country on a grand scale.
Alcohol is a depressant that acts like a stimulant upon initial consumption. People who abuse it may initially seek the thrill and euphoria it brings, but over time, they rewire their brain in ways that can cause serious problems. Not everyone who drinks will end up abusing alcohol. However, given its dual nature as a depressant masquerading as a stimulant, alcohol presents a real danger for anyone. Life is difficult. It is filled with trauma and people need to cope. Unfortunately, a lot of people use alcohol to cope and it is not a sufficient method to deal with problems.
Initially, drinking alcohol increases the body’s dopamine levels which produce a feeling of euphoria in the user. Dopamine is located in the reward center of the brain. In other words, drinking alcohol provides the user with a false sense of reward. However, over time the feeling of reward in the pleasure center of the brain decreases. The initial high and euphoria experienced in the early stages of alcohol decreases. In response to this, people often try to drink more to achieve the same effect they had when they first began drinking. As people consume more alcohol, their tolerance increases, which can lead to several physical and psychological damages if the person continues abusing alcohol.
Alcoholism is a disease, not a moral failing. Unfortunately, many times it is treated as a moral failing and people are imprisoned instead of treated in specialized, rehabilitative facilities. People who are dependent on alcohol need treatment, not incarceration. At A Better Today (ABT) we are leading the charge to make sure people receive the care they need for the disease and we advocate treatment for individuals instead of jail time.
Treatment at A Better Today
At the core of ABT’s philosophy is that everyone has a unique story and forges their own path in recovery. Accordingly, we make sure that our treatment plans are tailored to the individual rather than a group as a whole. We don’t have a one-size-fits-all approach to treatment. We know that the only way to ensure that people experience long-term success in their sobriety is by treating them according to their needs.
When someone first comes for treatment at ABT, they go through a medically supervised withdrawal process. Before beginning the process of detox, our team will administer a medical examination to determine the best course of treatment for each individual going forward. It is important that you give accurate information so that we can address your needs in a safe and controlled environment. Lying about your substance abuse isn’t going to help. If you’re nervous about being open about your past usage, remember, we aren’t here to judge who you were in your past but rather help you build a bright future. After the initial examination, you will be ready to go through detox.
Detox is an intensive process that scares a lot of people. People fear detox because of the withdrawal symptoms associated with it. Some of the more common symptoms include; vomiting, shaking and insomnia. In more serious cases, the client will experience hallucinations and tremors – however this is rare and only seen in a handful of cases. ABT helps alleviate the discomfort during detox by providing medications and an experienced medical staff to monitor your health. There is no definitive timetable for someone to complete detox, however, it generally doesn’t take longer than 14 days. Detox is the first step of treatment and prepares you for the therapeutic component. Detox may cleanse the body but therapy heals the mind.
ABT provides several different treatment methods to help reach those who reach out to us. Some of the therapy methods include; group, individual, art, music and cognitive behavioral therapy. The pillars of our treatment resides in group and individual therapy. Each therapeutic method addresses various issues that drive people to abuse alcohol.
Individual therapy at ABT pairs the client with a master’s level therapist. Our therapists can help identify the reason why someone drinks. Understanding the underlying motive to abuse alcohol can go a long way in treating someone. For example, some people drink because they have low self-esteem. As such, a therapist can identify that and come up with positive, affirming mental exercises for the client to do to increase their self-esteem and develop confidence. Our therapists are also trained in co-occurring disorders. Many people who abuse alcohol or other substances often have mental illnesses they are trying to cover up. Alcohol may temporarily distract the brain, but it doesn’t treat mental illnesses even though it masks the symptoms and in many ways it makes them worse.
Group therapy is effective for two reasons: it helps people re-learn social skills that may have deteriorated through alcohol abuse and the stories exchanged can be motivating. Abusing alcohol can seriously threaten relationships with loved ones. When someone is dependent on a substance they will do whatever it takes to get that substance, even if it means hurting the people they love. Group therapy provides a positive, affirming environment for people to re-learn healthy social skills. They communicate with others through positivity and encouragement rather than shame and manipulation that they may have exhibited during their addiction. A lot of people who succumb to alcohol abuse are burdened by shame, so setting up this kind of environment is a key component of treatment. Hearing other people’s stories of recovery can also spur people to continue fighting. Sobriety is a tough battle. In ABT’s group therapy sessions, we ensure that everyone is accounted for and held accountable.
Another widely used component of group therapy is the 12-step methodology. The 12-step method is a model of group therapy where people follow a curriculum of healing steps that lead them to realize that there is a higher power to help them. That said, ABT doesn’t subscribe to any particular religion and we respect everyone’s religious affiliation. We don’t want you to see the world in a given light, we just want you to find your own way—however that manifests to the individual.
Given our core philosophy, which honors the individual journey, we don’t have any sort of pre-determined duration for recovery. Everyone heals on their own time and in their own way. That said, one person could take 30 days, someone else could take more. It all depends on the person. Once someone completes treatment at our facilities, however, they will have the tools to live a sober life.
Not everyone who leaves our treatment facilities is ready to go back into the real world. Given that, it is strongly suggested that those leaving treatment consider a sober living facility. Sober living facilities are transitional housing units that help ease people back the world. There is no shame in living in a sober living facility. It is a great way to further make sure that you don’t relapse after treatment.
ABT is a family. When you leave our facility, you are still a part of the family. We make sure to provide alumni programs to keep track of our former clients and help them stay connected to the program. We know that a lot of people who fall into alcohol dependence suffer from strained family relationships and we want to be your second family.
Intervention and Traveling for Treatment
Once you are aware of the reality of your loved one’s alcohol dependence, it’s time to get them help. Trying to help someone can be hard, especially if they have hurt you or if they are resistant to getting help or don’t recognize that they have a problem. Though it may be hard, it is a life saving measure in many cases. ABT can give you the resources to find an intervention specialist to facilitate the intervention in conjunction with family and close friends. You don’t have to do it alone. If your loved one decides to seek treatment, encourage them to travel for treatment. Starting over in a new place can work wonders for ensuring a positive treatment experience.
ABT believes that everybody deserves treatment regardless of their income bracket. As such, we provide several payment methods to help with the costs of treatment. In addition, ABT takes most insurance plans which will often pay for most, if not all, the costs of treatment. Don’t let the perceived barrier of paying for treatment get in the way of getting help because getting treatment doesn’t have to empty your wallet. We want to help you.
ABT is committed to saving lives and healing families. Let us help you and your family.