Women, Alcohol and the Wine Culture

  The United States is the largest wine consumer in the world, exceeding the wine-producing European countries such as Italy and France, which long dominated world markets. According to the Beverage Information Group, 52 percent of women prefer wine, as compared to 20 percent of men. Women make up 57 percent of wine buyers. Women […]

High-Risk Recovery Situations! What To Do?

  The National Council of Drug Abuse (NIDA) defines high-risk situations as “those that threaten your recovery or trigger a strong craving to use substances.”  One of the easiest ways to identify this is by categorizing situations as to people, places or things.   People, Places and Things … People may be those who you […]

high risk recovery mountain climber

Counselor Self-Care: Protecting the Instruments of Healing

When I was a newly graduated counselor, over thirty years ago, I took my first job in an outpatient alcohol and drug treatment center. I remember my feelings of anxiety upon seeing my first clients. And I wondered, “What treatment modality should I apply?” I also worried, “Are my listening skills adequate and professional?”    […]

Addiction Treatment Alphabet Soup – What Do All Those Letters MEAN?

  I remember using acronyms in grade school to help me recall items for upcoming quizzes and tests. One of my favorites was “HOMES”, the names of the Great Lakes: Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Erie and Superior. When I got to college, I still made up acronyms to help me study and memorize for tests. While […]

The Rise of Older Women Seeking Addiction Treatment

    As the Clinical Director of Sanford House, one of my duties is to collect data and put it together in an annual Performance Management Report. Age ranges of the persons served are among the statistics collected. I have found it interesting to note the increasing number of older women entering addiction treatment.   The Older Woman […]

Why Is Group Therapy an Important Part of Addiction Treatment?

  Why is group therapy so prevalent in the treatment of substance use disorders (SUDs)? As demonstrated by self-help groups, and particularly as stated in 12 Step groups, members “share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problems and help others to recover.” Groups allow those in treatment opportunity to […]

Relapsed? Here’s Your Addiction Counselor’s Take…

“Don’t stay too long in the shame-filled grounds of relapse. Fertile soil awaits your return and your recovering.”   Holli Kenley   As professional Addiction Counselors, we are well trained to work with clients who relapse during or after completing alcohol and drug treatment. We are taught to view relapse as a clinical issue and make […]

Resident Feedback: What Works in Addiction Treatment?

Group Therapy and Treatment Electives We have several types of group therapy at Sanford House which occur on a daily basis. There are educational or didactic groups; activity groups; recreational groups and process groups. In process groups, the women share feelings and give feedback within the confines of trust, respect and empathy for one another. One of […]

Screening and Assessment in Addiction Treatment

  There are two familiar terms in the addiction treatment field – “screening”  and “assessment”. But do most people seeking treatment know the differences between these two processes? Or why screening and assessment are so important to the diagnosis and development of specific treatment recommendations? Screening, and assessment can also enhance positive recovery outcomes.   […]

Using Dreams as a Tool for Recovery

“Your vision will become clear only when you look inside your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens…” Carl Jung Did you ever wake up and try to sort out what you were dreaming about? Sometimes we wake up from a vivid dream and it takes a few moments to realize these moving […]