Are you looking for a professional to help provide you with substance abuse treatment on Long Island? It takes a great deal of courage to admit that you have a problem with abusing drugs or alcohol. It is easy to lie to yourself, to want to deny there is a problem, because it is scary to feel out of control and the increasing unmanageability of your life. You may have been trying to cut down or stop your use of alcohol or drugs on your own. Sometimes you can “control it” and sometimes you can’t. It is shocking where the use of alcohol and drugs takes you; it’s impact on your life and your loved ones can be devastating.
If you find yourself believing that you cannot get through your day without relying on alcohol and drugs, and your substance use is interfering with work, relationships, and achieving your life’s goals, it’s important to ask for help and seek treatment. Without it, you may find the consequences of your use escalating, to feel more isolated and alone, and wondering if there is any hope.
Suffolk DBT Psychological Services can help you stop your substance abuse before it destroys your life. At our confidential, private practice in Mount Sinai, NY, we provide evidence-based treatment that will help you to end your substance abuse. Our goal is to not just treat your substance abuse, but to also address the underlying difficulties that led to your substance abuse, so that you have the best chance at recovery and building a life beyond your wildest dreams.
What Does Substance Abuse Look Like?
Substance abuse is when a person cannot control the impulse to use alcohol or drugs even when there are negative consequences—the defining characteristic of addiction. You may experience a variety of different symptoms before you decide to ask for help. These can include:
- Increased tolerance for drugs or alcohol
- Failure to fulfill major life obligations
- Difficulties with relationships and increased interpersonal conflict
- An inability to control or reduce the amount of drugs or alcohol you are using
- Increased time and effort looking for and getting substance to use
- Loss of interest or apathy towards anything you used to feel strongly about, including those you love
- Erratic behaviors and isolating from others
- Engaging in dangerous behaviors while under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Disrupted sleep habits
- Experiencing withdrawal symptoms, such as anxiety, sweating, depression, insomnia, tremors, and increased heart rate
- Frequently, if you are struggling with substance abuse, you are also struggling with a co-occurring mental health disorder. Disorders that commonly present with addiction include depression, anxiety, eating disorders, personality disorders, and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
Often times, substance abuse develops as a way to cope with ongoing emotional vulnerabilities as well as other the symptoms of these disorders, which may only exacerbate the symptoms. In addition, addiction may mask the symptoms of any co-occurring disorder, making it difficult to diagnose and properly treat another disorder.
Treating Substance Abuse and Addiction
At Suffolk DBT Psychological Services, we focus on decreasing your use with the goal of eventual abstinence. In individual DBT sessions, your behavioral patterns and triggers for use are identified. Daily monitoring of your urges to use; actual use of alcohol/drugs; any suicidality, and emotions is reviewed in each session. Behavioral chain analysis is used to identify vulnerability factors, prompting events, and potentially reinforcing responses in your environment for episodes of substance abuse. The individual DBT therapist is responsible for coaching alternative behavioral coping skills as well as maintaining your motivation and commitment for change. In weekly DBT Skills Groups, the focus will be on helping you learn the behavioral skills that will help you transform your life into one worth living. Suffolk DBT Psychological Services will help you develop and generalize mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotion regulation, and interpersonal effectiveness skills. Rather than living a life devastated by chronically avoiding overwhelming emotions via substance abuse, you will learn to tolerate and regulate your emotions while solving problems in daily life effectively and skillfully. Relapse prevention strategies will be discussed and taught in both individual therapy and weekly skills groups.
At Suffolk DBT Psychological Services, we are experts in treating high-risk behaviors and negative consequences of substance abuse, addiction, and co-occurring mental health disorders. Dr. Lehnert has taught and practiced DBT since 1995. Jeanette Lorandini has provided cognitive-behavioral treatments and DBT since 1993. We have helped countless women and men recover from their substance abuse, using the most up-to-date and effective therapies available.
What are the most commonly abused drugs in the United States?
Alcohol and marijuana are the two most commonly abused drugs in the United States, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). In 2012, nearly 18 million people in the U.S. had problems with substance abuse and about 4 million met the criteria for abuse of marijuana. Prescription medication, heroin, and cocaine are the next most commonly abused drugs.
Can addiction be treated successfully?
Yes. Addiction is a treatable, chronic disease that can be managed successfully. Research shows that combining behavioral therapy with medications, when indicated, is the best way to ensure success. Treatment approaches must be individually tailored to address each patient’s substance use patterns and substance-related medical, psychiatric, and social problems as are standard in the DBT approach.
Why choose Suffolk DBT?
Suffolk DBT provides a supportive environment in which to make important life changes. Your individual DBT therapist can teach you comprehensive DBT skills that you have never learned or known how to use. For example, you can learn mindfulness skills to control your mind and to learn how to observe and surf urges. If urges are too intense to endure in the moment, you can learn to use the TIP skill, using a cold shower, intense exercise or paced breathing to not pick up a substance in the moment. Over the long-term, you will learn to identify your common life and emotional triggers for using so you can anticipate the need to use skills. Skills development is a core goal in DBT so that eventually you can become as skilled as your DBT therapist. Skills coaching is available between sessions so you will have help in learning to use new skills across all areas of your life. In addition, you will have the support of your weekly DBT Skills Group, having others who understand and encourage you. While in treatment in Suffolk DBT, you will not alone in your journey to health and happiness.