The Meadows Outpatient Program Is More Than An IOP

By David Anderson, The Meadows Executive Director

We often refer to The Meadows Outpatient Center as an “Intensive Outpatient Center,” or IOP…

….which it is.

However, in reality, the Meadows Outpatient Center is much more than what most people think of when they refer to an IOP. We like to think of our program as a COMPREHENSIVE outpatient program.

Let me explain…

What is an IOP?

There are many programs all around the country that call themselves IOP programs. These programs vary greatly in how they are set up; but, typically they only offer three, one-hour group therapy sessions per day, three days per week (i.e., nine hours total per week). And often group therapy is all that they offer— no individual therapy, no neurofeedback, no psychiatry, no trauma-sensitive yoga, no art therapy, no Somatic Experiencing, no EMDR, no acupuncture, etc.— Just nine hours per week of group therapy.

Now, compare that to The Meadows Outpatient Program which provides 18-20 hours of services and treatment per week. That is more than twice the amount of services provided in a typical IOP.

Each week, our patients may take advantage of:

  • Four 3-hour groups. That’s 12 hours of group therapy each week.
  • One hour of art therapy with a trauma/art therapist,
  • One hour of trauma-sensitive yoga
  • One to two hours of individual therapy per week (including somatic experiencing, EMDR, cognitive behavioral therapy, and expressive arts)
  • A separate Family Recovery Group each Monday (just for family members),
  • A weekly multi-family group,
  • Private family therapy (as needed for couples or family),
  • Two separate 1-hour appointments for Brainpaint Neurofeedback each week (typically with three different protocols during each hour),
  • One hour of acupuncture each Friday,
  • A one-hour Meadows-produced educational DVD (usually a Pia Mellody talk) in our state-of-the-art conference room on a high-definition big screen (with pizza!) on Fridays,
  • Psychiatrist appointments (Typically one hour in the beginning of the program; then one to three follow-up appointments during the course of treatment), and
  • Recently added: a once-per-month therapeutic drum circle.

Additionally, the Brain Spa is open at all times for patients to use Cranial Electro Stimulation (CES) machines. The Brain Spa has three relaxing chairs and one massage chair set up with studio quality headphones and iPod Nanos programmed with brain regulation programs (e.g., Hemi-sync binaural beats, Mozart Effect, Guided Imagery, meditation music, etc.)

Nationwide, the hours required for each level of care in behavioral health are…

  • Residential/inpatient programs – 24/7 care
  • Partial Hospitalization Programs (PHPs): Typically 30 hours per week of care,
  • Intensive Outpatient Programs (IOPs): Typically plus/minus 9 hours per week of care.

So, with our 18 to 20 hours of care per week, The Meadows Outpatient program is actually something in-between a PHP and an IOP.

Additional Benefits of The Meadows Outpatient Center

It’s also important to note that The Meadows Comprehensive Outpatient program is now “in network” with both Blue Cross/Blue Shield and Humana. And, our wonderful Finance Team works hard to every to make the step-down to outpatient care affordable, regardless of the patient’s insurance provider.

Plus, the weather is beautiful all year in Scottsdale, Arizona making The Meadows Outpatient Center the ideal place to begin or continue your journey of recovery. Our safe and nurturing community and our expert staff help patients gain the courage they need to face difficult personal issues including grief and loss, heal from emotional trauma, and become accountable for their own feelings, behaviors, and recovery. Send us an email or call us at 866-913-5010 for more information.

source Link

Advertisements

Join Us for Mindful Mondays

mindful-monday

Why do we struggle in life? That’s a question that many religions, philosophers, and scholars have tried to tackle for centuries. You’d be hard-pressed to find any human being who hasn’t experienced their fair share of pain and difficulty. It often comes in the form of trauma, abuse, neglect, break-ups, betrayals, disappointment, failures, illnesses, loss, and grief.

Regardless of the type or severity of their hardships, people typically find ways to survive. But, unfortunately, some of the ways we adapt our thoughts and behaviors in order to survive get in the way of our ability to thrive.

When we feel pain or discomfort, we tend to try to avoid it, suppress it, or repress it; or, we find some distraction through drugs, alcohol, food, sex, or any number of other substances and activities.

So, how do we go about this work? There is no one “right” way, but many people begin to cultivate mindfulness through the regular practice of meditation. Many experts believe that you can begin to notice changes in your moods and perceptions with as little as 10 minutes a day of meditation.

That’s why each Monday The Meadows will offer you the opportunity to meditate with one of our experts. Watch The Meadows Facebook page for a live, 10 to 15 minute, guided meditation every week.

Guided Meditation on Forgiving

Joyce Willis will be leading our first Mindful Monday session on Oct. 24 at 12:30 Mountain Standard Time (3:30 p.m. Eastern) Joyce is a therapist at The Meadows with 18 years of experience with mindfulness and meditation practices. She began her journey in 1998 when a doctor told her she needed to slow down after suffering a severe asthma attack. She realized that she had spent years trying to be superwoman, and didn’t quite know how to slow down. This led her to pick up Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn’s book Full Catastrophe Living.

Read more

Don’t Miss The Meadows Alumni Retreat

8fe3e0f34d3083cba6fe73d62a783d7f_l

By Aleah Johnson, The Meadows Alumni Coordinator

I am thrilled to announce that registration for the 2017 Meadows Alumni Retreat is now OPEN! This is one of my favorite times of the year. This year’s retreat was my first one at The Meadows and I can honestly say that it was one of the most impactful weekends I have had. My aha moments from this year’s retreat involved a lot of surrender, a lot of being open to trying things someone else’s way, and allowing myself to be comfortable with the uncomfortable. The moments, fellowship, laughter, tears, and smiles shared with fellow alumni, as well as The Meadows staff, will be something that I take with me in the years to come.

Here is what some other alumni have to say about it:

I come because it’s like a family reunion with a Meadows re-fuel!” – Amy B.

When I go to the retreat, I immediately feel a sense of belonging, that this is exactly where I am supposed to be at that time. It’s a great validation and acknowledgement of my time and commitment to my own recovery, being of service, and showing up for others. Hearing about others’ journey through recovery is inspiring and an important reminder that I’m not alone!” – Greg F.

We go back to the retreat because it is a great way to start off the year, we feel inspired and energized from the event. It’s also a great way to find out what other programs are being offered by The Meadows.” – Chris B.

There is so much to learn, regardless of your time in recovery or the time you have supported someone in recovery since attending Family Week; we offer something for everyone!

Click here for more information and to register – we’ll see you there!

Read more

Identify Your Triggers to Avoid Relapse

f710044bf79a4b1f5d8b085e5e5d9711_LBy Claudia Black, Ph.D., Senior Fellow and Clinical Architect of the Claudia Black Young Adult Center at The Meadows

The following is an excerpt from Claudia Blacks Audio CD “Triggers.” You can find it in The Meadows online bookstore or on Amazon.com.

Triggers are specific memories, behaviors, thoughts and situations that jeopardize recovery – signals you are entering a stage that brings you closer to a relapse. The process is much like riding a roller coaster that loops over itself. Once the roller coaster car gets to a certain spot in the track, a threshold is met, there is no turning back, and it starts the downward loop. Just as gravity has a motivating effect on a roller coaster, brain chemistry has a similar effect motivating triggers. When people use substances or engage in escape behaviors the brain releases neurotransmitters such as adrenaline and dopamine that trigger the brain’s pleasure/reward center; or it may release serotonin which lessens anxiety and depression.

Will power alone is not a defense against a relapse. Recovery is achieved, maintained and enjoyed through a series of actions. Learn to identify your triggers, and with each one identify a plan that anticipates and de-escalates the power of the trigger. With that, your reward is another day of sobriety and endless possibilities.

Five Common Triggers

Romanticizing the Behaviors

Romanticizing involves a tunnel focus only on the positive feelings you associate with the behavior, it is glamorizing using behaviors and in the moment totally forgetting about the negative consequences.

Getting overwhelmed at times is to be expected, but it’s very easy to slip into romanticizing without any insight as to how you got there and at that moment you enter a slippery zone, touching the trigger. While romanticizing is in and of itself a trigger, it is often in tandem with an external trigger such as noises, sights, sounds or even tastes. You could be watching a movie and the next thing you know it is depicting the power of alcohol, drugs and sex in a positive way and you are off into romanticizing. Or you’re listening to the radio and an advertisement for a drug comes on, and you think about your pain pills as the commercial goes on to tell you how much better you’ll feel, and off you go. Or you’re watching a ball game on TV and as you watch you can almost smell the popcorn and peanuts and you see the spectators drinking large cups of beer and everyone is smiling like it’s only a good time.

Take a few moments to think about how you romanticize your addictive behavior: What do I find yourself thinking about? What is the romanticizing covering up? What am I forgetting to take into account?

Feelings

Recovery is the ability to tolerate your feelings without the need to medicate, engage in self-destructive or self-defeating behaviors and thoughts. Addicts have used their behaviors and substances for years to separate from their emotional states. And there is so much to feel about—guilt for how your behavior has hurt others; sadness for your losses; anger with yourself; fear of what is in front of you; shame for thinking you are inadequate, not worthy. You can act out in response to every feeling imaginable.

Any person or situation can trigger threatening feelings. You are upset when you realize your friends are reluctant to include you on a weekend outing because you created a scene last time. You want the people you work with to like you but you are anxious that you will be rejected, or not welcomed. Your sister won’t let you babysit her kids anymore and you feel guilty, sad and angry. You just met with your ex-wife and you walk away angry, like always when you see her.

You are working hard in your recovery and you know you are doing pretty well, but it still isn’t easy to have these feelings and not be reactive. You lessen or get rid of feelings when you own them, talk about them, or in some cases engage in problem-solving. It is when you try to divert, ignore, and numb that you get into trouble. Feelings are a part of the human condition and you can’t escape them, so the goal is to learn how to tolerate the feelings.

Recognize the gifts that come with feelings. Feelings are cues and indicators telling you what you need. Loneliness tells you in your humanness you need connection, fear can offer you protection, sadness offers growth, guilt is your conscious, offering direction for amends. It is critical for you to have this insight, and more importantly to start to take ownership of recognizing the feelings when you have them. It is vital to learn how to be with the feeling and how to appropriately express it. It is also necessary to find safe people in which to share your emotional experiences.

So when you recognize your feelings ask yourself …

What do I need? What feelings are ones I go to any length to avoid? What is the price you pay for hiding or masking those feelings?

Loss

Coupled with the trigger of feelings is the fact those feelings are often associated with loss. By the time you get to recovery you have had multiple losses in your life, often losses related to childhood, many times due to being raised with abuse, addiction, mental illness, etc. While you may have experienced trauma within your original family, the pain of loss may be from a specific situation; You may have experienced the loss of relationship with your parents or children; or the death of friends, family; or abortions, career or work opportunities missed. As an addict, you are likely to have losses related to health issues. Perhaps you have Hepatitis C, or HIV, or injuries due to accidents.

The goal is not to dwell on your losses, but to not live in the pain and anguish of them which is what happens when you don’t acknowledge them and what they mean, triggering you back to your using behavior. With some loss, you can only grieve, and ultimately come to find some meaning from your experience, with others in time, you can attempt to repair damaged relationships.

Resentments

Resentment is also a feeling but I think it warrants its own place as a significant trigger. Resentments are often built on assumptions, When you don’t look at me I assume you think you are better than me. When you don’t include me in a social gathering, I am assuming you think I am not good enough to be with you and your friends. They are also built on entitlement, which is a form of unrealistic expectations and impatience. For example:

I have been in recovery six weeks now. I resent the fact that my wife still doesn’t trust me. Now that I am clean and sober my boss should give me that promotion I deserve.

The attitude in both examples is not just that you should be rewarded for doing well, but that you should be rewarded for the sacrifices made. After all, you have given up your alcohol, your drugs, and/or the addictive behavior and therefore deserve to be rewarded. The problem here is that you are still more connected to the loss than to the gifts of sobriety. Ways to move from resentments are – when assuming, check it out; put yourself in someone else’s shoes (it may allow expectations to be more realistic); identify and own the feelings the resentment is covering (often it’s a cover for feelings of inadequacy and/or fear); be willing to live and let live.

Some questions to consider:

What does it mean for me to hang onto resentments? What would it mean to accept that I have been hurt or wronged and that I can no longer change that? What does it mean to take responsibility for my own feelings? Ultimately who pays the price for hanging onto resentments? Today am I willing to let go of resentments?

Slippery people, places or situations

You need to identify specific triggers that are people, places, and situations that are high risk. Slippery people could be your ex-lover, certain family members, past using/party buddies. A slippery place might be a bar you used to frequent, a casino or an area in your community where you cruised. Slippery situations could be an emotionally charged social gathering, such as a wedding, a family event, or vacation setting. In essence, any place that triggers a positive association with the use of your drug of choice.

Medication may be also a trigger for which you need to be accountable. While there are situations where medication is needed, you are at high risk of abuse. You need to be proactive in how you are going to cope with this situation because it is likely your brain is going to remember a good feeling, saying more is better. Just because you are agitated, doesn’t mean you need a prescription pill. Again, there are situations where medications are necessary, but self-diagnosis and/or self-prescribing only create a recipe for disaster.

What are the people, places or situations that are potential triggers? What creates the greatest safety for me to not get triggered? What triggers can I avoid? If I can’t avoid a certain place, can I lessen the contact or time? Is going into this slippery situation worth the risk?

You Have Options in Recovery

While some decisions around triggers are absolute, others are not necessary for your entire life. Know your triggers and make a plan accordingly. In the face of a trigger, what do you need to do? What do you need to tell yourself? Who can you reach out to for support and or problem solving?

1) Practice staying in the present, don’t sit in the past or project into the future

2) Validate the gifts of recovery for the day – practice gratitude daily

3) Identify, build and use a support system – you need to stay connected. History and experience has proven time and time again, that recovery is not a solitary process, and cannot be sustained in isolation.

4) Trust your Higher Power is on your side

Need Help Achieving or Maintaining Sobriety?

Whether you are new to treatment or transitioning from inpatient treatment, you may need a program that helps you to build skills for maintaining your sobriety. In addition to its “mainstream” intensive outpatient program, The Meadows Outpatient Center offers a program designed specifically for young adults, ages 18 – 26. The Claudia Black Young Adult Outpatient Program is designed to foster the development of the individual while helping them build skills to prevent relapse as they transition into a more fulfilling and self-sufficient life. Call today for more information: 800-244-4949

Source Link