Cost of Addiction

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As the year draws to a close, there are two studies that have been published that highlight the cost of addiction.  Families who live with substance use are often well aware of the daily struggles, fears and feelings of helplessness that are a constant companion.

The first study by the Centers for Disease Control notes that deaths from overdoses of prescription drugs and heroin continue to be the leading cause of unintentional death.  Last year, 47,055 people died from drug overdoses — 1.5 times greater than the number killed in car crashes.  Those aren’t just numbers but numbers of people who likely were loved by family and friends.  Heartland Intervention founder Scott J. Watson recently appeared on WXIN Fox 59 and offered his opinions of this study.

The second study highlighted the fact that about 1 in 10 Americans struggles with a drug use disorder at some point in their lifetime, according to JAMA Psychiatry.  This study not only highlights the extent of the problem but also points out the need for access to appropriate professional treatment.  Those who carry a substance use disorder diagnosis are often at greater risk for other dangers such as suicide, accident, certain medical and psychiatric problems.  “The numbers are troubling and signal a need to provide abstinence-based professional treatment to those who struggle with substance abuse.”, Watson says.  An article outlining the study can be read HERE.

If you have a loved-one who struggles with drugs or alcohol, don’t wait!  The cost associated with drug addiction will only get worse.  Call Heartland Intervention, LLC today at 877-752-8811.  We are the leading provider of intervention services and treatment facilitation in Indiana and beyond and are anxious to discuss a plan for your family member today.

Treatment Center Choices

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Whether you are thinking about intervention or just preparing to take a loved one to treatment, selecting a treatment center can be a daunting task.  Ours is an age when the internet can often be accessed at a moment’s notice via a laptop computer or smart phone.  When it comes to selecting a treatment center, Heartland Intervention strongly suggests that it is a bad idea to base a selection on your own research.  Here are three reasons why.

Web Page = Belly Button

Don’t feel bad!  We live in an age where marriages begin with selecting a date from a website.  But websites are marketing tools…nothing more!  And web pages are like belly buttons…everybody’s got one.  Treatment centers (even bad ones) spend thousands off dollars to create websites in an effort to funnel prospective patients their way.  They tend to focus on amenities and ease of access while promoting hope to the desperate families.  Often they avoid troubling aspects like treatment outcomes, therapeutic philosophy, MAT and cost.  You will never see a website that says, “We are overpriced and our outcomes are poor.”.

More Than You Know

A friend used to remind me that most subjects involve “more than you know”.  This is true with treatment selection too.  Often the published length of stay or cost includes some flexibility.  In addition, regular referral partners may be able to secure a bed or a ride from the airport quicker than someone calling the admissions department’s general number.  Some centers are not set up to do evening or weekend admissions but may be willing to do one at the request of a referring professional.  Heartland Intervention works hard to develop professional relationships with the very best treatment centers across the country and throughout Indiana and the Midwest in an effort to best serve our clients.

Treatment Outcomes Matter

When a loved one finally agrees to seek help for addiction it is a significant event!  It is important not to waste time selecting the treatment center.  It is equally unwise to use one that is convenient but may not be appropriate.   Sometimes that means medically supervised detox, a dual diagnosis program or special treatment for trauma.  Websites often fail to mention these offerings or fail to mention that they are available only at a significantly increased cost.  The bottom line is that treatment outcomes are a significant factor in selecting a center.  At Heartland Intervention, we work with only the VERY  best so that our clients will have an opportunity at strong clinical outcomes.

One Final Note

It should be stated that Heartland Intervention receives no stipend, kick-back or rebate from any facility for referrals.  To do so would be unethical.  From time to time we will be treated to a meal or participate in a professional’s weekend in an effort to better get to know the programming staff and their philosophy.  As a Board Registered Interventionist and a Licensed Clinical Addictions Counselor and SAP, it is important that we remain independent so that we are always ready to best meet the needs of our Heartland Intervention clients.

If you have questions about treatment centers, please feel free to call us at 877/752-8811.

Off To Treatment

Call Heartland Intervention at 877-752-8811.

Call Heartland Intervention at 877-752-8811.

Intervention Planning is Key

The intervention process takes lots of planning and most of the work occurs well before the intervention itself.  Travel to treatment is an important part of the intervention planning process and is typically a time of tension and hope.  Planning travel to treatment should not be overlooked.  This is another reason you may want to consider using a professional interventionist if you are considering getting help for an addicted loved-one.

When planning an intervention, Heartland Intervention works with the family to assure a quality intervention.  That means putting together a team that will use love and hope to crack the barriers of denial, anger and fear.  We provide our families with excellent treatment options designed to meet their needs.  And we work with them to plan every aspect of the intervention including travel to the treatment center.

Treatment Travel Considerations

Families often ask if the interventionist should travel with a person to treatment.  The answer varies case by case.  Travel may mean driving across town or flying cross-country and several factors help determine who should take a person to treatment.   What follows are the most common options when taking someone from the intervention to a treatment center.

While it may be surprising, most families choose a non-reactive family member to escort a person to treatment.   This allows for a high degree of comfort and familiarity during a process that can be a little scary for everyone involved.  Heartland Intervention is also happy to travel with a person from the intervention to treatment.   While rare, some families prefer to have a trained sober companion travel. It often is a person who may be demographically (age, sex, substance of abuse) similar.

Cautions

No matter who is taking a person to treatment, there are things to be aware of.  While very rare, every interventionist has a story of a transport that didn’t go as planned.  Again, these are uncommon and often can be avoided with proper planning.  Boundaries and focus must be maintained.

If you have questions about intervention or the planning process, call Heartland Intervention, LLC at 877-752-8811.  We are the choice for intervention services in Indiana and beyond.  We look forward to working with your family if you have a loved one that struggles with drugs, alcohol or other addictive issues.

A DUI… Now What?

Heartland Intervention

It is a rare week when someone doesn’t call and say…”I got a DUI”.  Some have no addiction issue and others are not facing their first offense.   Regardless, a DUI, OVWI or OWI in Indiana can have significant impact on family, work and freedom.  Most agree, an independent substance abuse assessment is critical both to get help and minimize damage.

Heartland Intervention specializes in recovery from substance abuse issues.  Our founder Scott J. Watson is an expert and leader in the field.  We are not attorneys.  Still, experience tells us that those charged with DUI are far more likely to avoid jail time and have a reduced length of probation and license revocation if they are proactive.  This means getting a prompt assessment for substance abuse and mental health issues and following the recommendations for treatment and/or education as soon as possible.  It is FAR better for you or your attorney to demonstrate the the court that you are taking action.  This is done by getting an assessment promptly and focusing on the solution.  At Heartland Intervention, we conduct assessments for Indiana and many other states.  Mr. Watson is a DOT qualified Substance Abuse Professional (SAP), a credential that if recognized across the country.

Anyone can get a DUI or similar charge.  Often, a person’s response to that is the most important factor in predicting a person’s future.  If you have been charged with DUI, don’t wait.  As assessment from a trained and qualified professional is an important first step .  Call Heartland Intervention at 877/752-8811 to schedule your appointment for an assessment.

Lifeline Law Saves Lives

Heartland Intervention, LLC

Everyday the news is filled with stories about overdoses, gun violence and other tragedies.  Often drugs and alcohol use, abuse or sales play a central role in these tragedies.  As students head back to school we focus again on college campuses where the problem of substance abuse and sexual assault is a daily reality.  While others work to change the culture, there is one tool designed to save lives TODAY!

Indiana Lifeline Law

In 2014, State Senator Jim Merritt authored legislation designed to give immunity from alcohol related prosecution to any minor who calls to report a medical-emergency or crime.  Merritt explains that it’s not about giving bad behavior a free pass but rather getting life-saving help to those who need it the most.

Every year we read of accidental overdoses or serious injuries to students who are drunk or under the influence.  It is easy to sit back and be critical or wring our hands fearing that there is nothing that can be done.

Call to Action

If you are the parent, sibling, or loved one of an Indiana student you can help.  Make sure they are aware of Indiana’s Lifeline Law!  Click HERE to learn more about it.  And if someone you love is struggling with a drinking or substance abuse problem, do not wait.  Call Scott J. Watson at Heartland Intervention, LLC today at 317-752-8811.  We exist to lovingly offer recovery instead of addiction to families suffering from substance abuse and more.

When Substance Abuse or Addiction Appears

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A younger brother may find a picture or text on social media.  The phone rings with news that a family member has been arrested for underage possession or DUI.  A respected co-worker doesn’t show for work after failing a random urine drug screen.  Whether it begins with a hunch or a bombshell, it is not uncommon for families to find themselves face to face with addiction or problematic substance use.

Most families lack the experience to know how to react when drug or alcohol problems arise.  Regardless of the substance being abused, families, freedom, finances, employment and health are often at risk unless something changes.  Families often are at a loss for what to do or where to turn.

Heartland Intervention, LLC can help!  As a leading provider of intervention services in Indiana and beyond, we work with families everyday who simply need guidance regarding assessment, intervention or treatment recommendations for loved ones.  While all substance abuse has certain common threads, each person and family is unique.  That’s why it is important to get independent  professional advice  for your family or friend.

Following an assessment, Heartland Intervention will work with you on appropriate treatment.  Among the factors considered are clinical appropriateness, co-occurring need, fit within the therapeutic community, cost, location and more.  We have no association with any treatment center so we can speak openly and honestly about each one that we recommend.  We work with a wide variety of facilities in order to best serve the families who trust us.  As our founder Scott J. Watson is fond of saying, “Because the stakes are high, we don’t recommend any clunkers.”.

If you are concerned about a loved one’s substance abuse, do not wait!  Call Heartland Intervention, LLC today at 877-752-8811.  We look forward to guiding you as you navigate the world of drug and alcohol assessment, rehab and treatment.  The stakes ARE high.  Call us today.

After Treatment

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It may seem strange but one of the first questions that many families ask Heartland Intervention is what happens AFTER treatment for substance abuse.  More often than not, this questions comes up during the intervention planning process or when we are helping with treatment facilitation.  While it can be unwise to gaze into the crystal ball of discharge planning, there are several factors to consider when primary treatment ends.

Supportive Living

One of the most important issues to address following treatment is where a person will live.  Opinions and answers to this questions can be emotionally charged and contain a mix of hidden and differing agendas.  Families can be upset by suggestions a loved-one might not immediately return home to a spouse, kids or parents.  This recommendations does not indict a family but seeks to offer increased support to someone in early recovery.  Frequently, clients are urged to return home promptly and engage fully with family.  Others are encouraged to evaluate supported living facilities that offer structure, accountability and a recovery community that is likely to reinforce the lessons learned in treatment.

Continuing Care

Recovery from drugs and alcohol is on ongoing process.  Study after study has shown that the duration and intensity of treatment significantly impact the likelihood of a person remaining drug/alcohol free.  Given that it is often a good idea for a person to step-down to an outpatient program when discharged from residential treatment.  For those who have completed an Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) a relapse prevention group is often indicated.  Most all clients are expected to engage heavily with a 12-step or similar support group.  Other clients engage with a therapist to both support recovery and address any underlying issues, such as trauma, that may hinder sustainable recovery.

Structure and Accountability

Just as addiction has a number of reliable hallmarks, so does recovery.   Most of our clients have found that structure and accountability are useful recovery tools.  Often that means that a person’s schedule is less fluid than before.  This includes work, 12-step meetings, phone contact with a sponsor or recovery mentor, and regular time doing service or other activities to support one’s spiritual condition.  The idea of structure can produce some resistance for addicts and alcoholics but most will report over time that it is important.

The Family

Often it is said that addiction is a family disease.  If so, then the family needs to take recovery steps as well.  This can involve 12-step meetings or therapy aimed at reducing codependency and strengthening boundaries.

At Heartland Intervention we are always willing to be involved and make suggestions when our clients transition through treatment.  We also trust the treatment centers that we use to guide and advise our mutual clients.  If you are worried about a loved-one’s use of drugs or alcohol call us today at 877-752-8811.  We are a leading provider of intervention services and substance abuse assessment in Central Indiana and beyond.

Not Hitting Bottom

Heartland Intervention

What was the worst day of your life? Are you able to remember why it was so bad and the gut-wrenching feelings that  gripped you? What made that day so bad and could anything have been done earlier to have made it better?

When people call Heartland Intervention, they are often surprised to hear me say that we don’t have to “let” someone hit bottom. Often, the goal of an intervention is to RAISE a person’s bottom to their current level of despair.   We do this so the addicted  person does not have to loose their job, marriage or house before they get into treatment.

Recently we conducted an intervention for a family that had grown weary of “watching a loved one slip away”.  Our goal was to encourage him to seek an assessment for both mental health (including trauma and grief) and addiction.  It was not easy and emotions ran high.  But our loving intervention was successful and their loved one got the help that he needed.

A parent whose child has a fever would not just wait to see how bad the fever would get before taking action.  Nor would the parent be afraid that taking action would only make the situation worse.  A parent whose child’s grade’s were sinking would intervene early in an effort to prevent things from getting any worse.  So too should it be with addiction.  There is no value in seeing how low a person can go.  Some people’s bottom may be lower than it takes to kill them.  We seek to intervene before a person loses their job, spouse, freedom, health or life.

Heartland Intervention is recognised as a leader in the field of intervention services,  assessment and recovery.  Our affordable and  loving approach to intervention coupled with our very high success rate make us the choice of many concerned about their loved one.  While we are based in Indiana, Scott Watson travels throughout the country conducting interventions and facilitating entry into treatment.

Left untreated, addiction always gets worse.  Many people have told us that intervention day was actually one of the BEST days of their life.  Call us today at 317-752-8811.  We look forward to listening and helping.

Getting Help

Heartland Intervention, LLC

Heartland Intervention, LLC

Whether a loved one is facing their first DUI or has a long standing substance abuse issue, it is common for family members to reach out to Heartland Intervention for help.  While each situation is different, it is important to conduct an independent (not affiliated with treatment center) evaluation.  This allows for an objective series of recommendations that are clinically appropriate and a good fit for the family.

Indiana families know that Heartland Intervention is committed to saving lives and families by lovingly offering recovery instead of addiction.  We do this by working with treatment providers near and far.  That’s because recovery is not a “one size fits all” endeavor.  Some folks need Intensive Outpatient Programs (IOP) while others need a medically supervised detox before they are able to begin their recovery adventure.  Regardless, we work with the individual to lay out a program that is clinically appropriate, affordable and offers the promise of a better life.

When there are legal issues, Heartland Intervention is experienced in working with families, attorneys, probation officers and more.  We recognize that long-term sustainable recovery offers the best hope to our clients facing many types of legal challenges.  That’s why attorney’s recommend us for assessment and occasionally as an expert witness in a trial or hearing.

If you love someone who is struggling, do not wait.  Call Heartland Intervention, LLC today at 877-752-8811 and ask how we can help.  Addiction robs people of their freedom, health, relationships and life.  Heartland Intervention is here to help.

 

Suicide and Addiction

 

Heartland Intervention, LLC

No topic strikes fear into the heart of people like that of suicide.  At some point most of us are likely to be impacted by the suicide of a family member, friend, neighbor, co-worker or client.  For families that struggle with addiction, the looming fear of suicide or other self-harm is a constant  companion.  Statistics show that those who abuse drugs and alcohol and ten times (10x) more likely to commit suicide than the general population.  That number skyrockets for IV-drug users.

Recently, our area has seen a huge increase in the number of teenage suicides.  That prompted a discussion on 93.1 WIBC to address what can be done to save young lives.  Heartland founder Scott J. Watson was honored to be a part of that panel convened by John Kesler along with Sen. Jim Merritt, Dr. Julie Steck and Stuart Hobson whose son recently killed himself.  The panel noted that depression, family history, previous attempts and co-occuring disorders were also suicide risk factors.

The responsability for stemming the tide of suicide, which is psychologist Julie Steck says is the leading cause of adolescent death, lies with all of us.  Heartland’s Scott J. Watson offered a suggestion to all parents and those who work with youth.  “No matter how dark it is, how bad it hurts or what’s been done to you, find a way to say three critical words….I NEED HELP.”  This is the message we need to send to all of our young people so that they know there is a better way out.

Often self-harm and substance use are symptoms of a much bigger problem.  It is important that families access therapeutic professionals to properly evaluate mental health and addiction concerns.  If someone is suicidal, take it seriously and call 911.  If you are worried about a loved one call a community mental health center, hospital or Heartland Intervention today.