Serenity Now provides an eclectic range of psychotherapies designed to address the unique needs of substance abusers as well as individuals suffering from addictive behaviors.
Because everyone’s psychological state is heavily influenced by the way past events in his or her life were perceived and managed by that particular person, it is essential that patients seeking help for a substance or behavioral problem have access to a wide range of psychotherapies.
In order to find one that is the most effective in accommodating a patient’s successful recovery and mental health, Serenity Now therapists may try using several different types of psychotherapies on a patient to determine which one best suits the patient’s needs.
What is Psychotherapy?
At the core of psychotherapy lies the basic idea that a person suffering from a mental illness or addiction disorder can benefit from talking about his or her problems with an objective, caring professional known as a psychotherapist, or simply therapist.
Created over a century ago by Sigmund Freud, this specialized type of “talk” therapy has successfully helped millions of people overcome mental health difficulties by talking about their innermost thoughts, feelings, disappointments and desires with a trained therapist.
Psychologists skilled in psychotherapeutic techniques can gently but firmly maneuver patients into resolving conflicts and coping with the psychic pain of traumatic events by exploring concepts such as self-esteem, self-identity and unfulfilled desires.
Patients undergoing psychotherapy at Serenity Now always find that they are eventually able to cope productively with stress and anxiety, learn to accept and come to terms with feelings of guilt or shame and acquire the skills necessary to live a life without drugs, alcohol or engaging in addictive behaviors.
What Psychotherapies Does Serenity Now Offer?
We provide psychotherapy for the purpose of helping patients defeat and recover from substance addiction and behavioral addictions such as sex, Internet and food addiction. The most widely used psychotherapeutic technique at our facility is cognitive behavioral therapy, which emphasizes the importance of how an individual perceives an event and corrects faulty patterns of thinking that tend to distort the reality of a situation.
Rational emotional behavioral therapy is similar to CBT but also helps patients understand how disturbed emotions that are dogmatically sustained instead of questioned and eliminated can lead to escaping into addictive behaviors. REBT also focuses on the psychological damage inflicted by using the overly emotional language of “shoulds”, “musts” and “oughts” instead of concentrating on objective appraisals of choices and situations.
The full list of Psychotherapies offered at Serenity Now includes:
Psychoanalysis and the Unconscious
Some patients are wary of psychotherapy and psychoanalysis because of its association with dated Freudian concepts about the unconscious, the superego, the ego and other terms that seem quaint and silly today.
Although some of Freud’s ideas about the machinations of the human psyche are considered pseudoscientific today, much of his research into the causes of anxiety, fear and guilt are still useful and applicable to the treatment of addiction and mental illness.
The theory of defense mechanisms emerged from Freud’s studies into the astounding ability of the human mind to resist dealing with distressing thoughts and feelings directly and consciously. Some defense mechanisms are well-known in society such as repression, regression and displacement, which is the redirection of uncomfortable impulses onto an object or person other than the actual object or person causing the irritation.
Arguing with your significant other and throwing an ashtray at the wall in anger is an example of displacement. Addicts who become frustrated at a family member who will not give them money to purchase drugs may displace their anger by verbally accosting their spouse or even their children.
One of the most commonly used defense mechanisms used by addicts to deal with their situation is denial, which is also one of the most difficult for therapists to break through when in the first few sessions with a new client.
Prescription medication addicts have a propensity to deny they have a problem because their drugs are prescribed and not obtained off the street. In addition, prescription addicts also use the excuse that their “condition” warrants them using the drugs.
Psychotherapeutic techniques were also conceived as a way to access the human unconscious, where the existence of memories, emotions and conflicts that play a significant role in directing our behavior.
What is “Free Association”
Therapists may engage patients who are resistant to psychoanalysis by using a technique called “free association”, an older method that is still highly effective in helping patients and their therapists get to the core issues that may be encouraging substance addiction or addictive behaviors.
Free association simply suggests that the patient respond to a word or phrase provided by the therapist with the first word or phrase that comes to his or her mind. It seems simple enough but has been found through decades of research to be an excellent way to begin treating clients who unwilling participants of a recovery program.
By providing patients with psychologists and counselors experienced in the implementation of psychotherapies, Serenity Now can help individuals suffering from drug, alcohol and behavioral addictions understand their illness and learn how to develop different sets of coping skills and strategies to facilitate the recovery process and make recovery a successful and rewarding experience.