If you or a loved one is struggling with drug addiction, finding the right treatment can be a challenge. We’re here to help you determine whether the care we offer is the right fit.
Learn About Drug Addiction Treatment
Learn about drug addiction treatment at Belmont Behavioral Health System in Philadelphia, PA
Substance abuse is a term used to describe behavior that includes the intentional misuse of drugs or alcohol. An individual may engage in substance use once or multiple times. Substance abuse may even include the misuse of legal substances or prescription drugs. In some cases, individuals might abuse both legal and illegal substances, such as when a person misuses prescription opioid painkillers as well as illegal drugs such as heroin. Substance abuse may occur when an individual strives to self-medicate him or herself, or when the individual is simply using the substance to obtain a “high” feeling.
All types of substance abuse will put the user at risk for both immediate and long-term health damage. Unhealthy substance use can cause psychological problems, cognitive deficiencies, and physical damage. In many cases, ongoing substance abuse turns into substance dependence, and the individual may become caught up in a pattern of trying to obtain more of the substance, trying stronger substances, and using the substance. Eventually, the substance will take over important priorities like employment, family, and financial wellbeing. Furthermore, substance abuse will worsen any pre-existing mental health conditions, and it may trigger the beginning of an underlying mental health disorder.
At Belmont Behavioral Health System, we are experienced in treating substance use disorders that co-occur with other mental health concerns. When substance abuse worsens mental health, and mental health disorders worsen substance abuse, a person may become trapped in a cycle of unhappiness along with further substance use. We offer wellness experts who can provide comprehensive, specialized treatment for co-occurring disorders. While the symptoms of substance use can be devastating to an individual and his or her family, we offer whole-person treatment that focuses on both addiction and the causes behind that addiction. By seeking treatment, it is possible to learn how to manage the symptoms of co-occurring disorders and begin a more satisfying life.
If you find that you or someone important to you is struggling with both addiction and a mental health disorder, comprehensive treatment may just save your life or the person you care about.
How to Help a Loved One
Helping a loved one get treatment for drug addiction
When you learn that someone you care about has been misusing substances, you may immediately worry about that loved one’s wellness and safety. You may also find that you had some preconceived notions about addiction, and what type of individuals engage in substance use. You may even find yourself questioning the personality or character of your loved one. The more you learn about substance use and the disease of addiction, the more you will learn that substance abuse is not a sign of low character, but rather, it is a disease that has many complex origins. In many cases, addiction may co-occur with a mental illness, such as depression, anxiety, or bipolar disorder.
Addiction usually leads to issues with honesty and trust issues often plague relationships with an addicted person as well. Comprehensive treatment programs often offer family counseling or family education to help rebuild these relationships and equip family members to better help their loved one. Family programs are important to help encourage and support those who care about the addicted person by emphasizing two important facts:
- Substance abuse and substance use disorder does not only impact the individual who has been misusing substances. Family members, friends, and even colleagues are often impacted by addiction in one person.
- Loved ones and family members can play an important role in recovery for their loved one. The participation of loved ones and friends is vital to the wellness of the addicted person. From initiating treatment, to learning the signs of substance use and learning more about what recovery means, friends and family are in an optimal place to make a big difference in the addicted person’s life.
There are some ways that you can begin to make a positive impact on your loved one’s life:
- Thoroughly research different types of treatment for addiction and mental health disorders.
- Identify treatment programs that may assist your loved one.
- Contact counselors or treatment facilities to learn more about treatment options and offerings.
- Learn how to best approach your loved one about the subject of substance use or mental health support.
- Help your loved one enter treatment, or accompany your loved one to meet with treatment admissions staff or treatment programs
- Understand the everyday needs of your loved one, and arrange for support while that person seeks treatment. For instance, pet care or child care may be important needs for a person entering treatment.
- Take care of yourself by attending family therapy sessions, so that you can be better informed and find support and understanding for your own unique situation.
The treatment of addiction along with a co-occurring mental health disorder is often a life-long process that requires maintenance. Recovery is never straightforward, and every individual case is unique. Your loved one will need your love and support, especially as he or she uncovers and recovers from the root causes of substance use. By getting support for yourself and taking good care of yourself, you will be better able to help your loved one navigate a new, substance-free lifestyle.
Why Consider Belmont
Why consider treatment for drug addiction at Belmont Behavioral Health System in Philadelphia, PA
Substance abuse, along with a co-occurring mental health disorder can have a devastating impact on an individual’s life. Substance abuse may cause problems that range from short-term illness or regretful actions to the lasting and difficult impact of severe substance use that results in damage to vital organs such as the lungs, liver, kidneys, heart, and pancreas. Untreated substance abuse may also result in brain damage, memory problems, decreased cognition, and impaired judgment.
Often, substance abuse will trigger or worsen mental health issues, similarly, mental health issues may lead an individual to try and cope through substance use. The result is a cycle that requires effective support in order for healing to begin. Life without treatment may lead to financial problems, family conflict, job-retention problems, hopelessness, and even homelessness. Fortunately, evidence-based treatment options are available. The team at Belmont Behavioral Health can help get you or your loved one back on the path of healing with effective interventions and a dedicated post-treatment support network.
Types of Treatment
Types of drug addiction treatment offered at Belmont Behavioral Health System in Philadelphia, PA
Belmont Behavioral Health System is a psychiatric hospital that provides care for children, adolescents, adults, and geriatric patients who are struggling with psychiatric issues, substance use, and co-occurring mental health problems. Each year, we care for approximately 3500 individuals in our inpatient programs alone.
Founded in 1937 as a 60-bed psychiatric hospital, we have grown to exceed the dreams of our founders, and we pride ourselves on being established members of our community in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Our campus is situated on 13 acres of land in a park-like setting that provides a serene environment in which to help individuals overcome mental health difficulties.
Treatment at Belmont is based on a foundation of individualized care. We recognize that each person who comes to heal with us brings a unique set of strengths, needs, and treatment goals. We are committed to developing care plans that are tailored for each person who struggles with substance use disorder with a co-occurring mental health concern. At Belmont Behavioral Health System, no two treatment plans are the same.
Belmont offers a wide range of interventions across various levels of care. These interventions include the following:
Medically monitored detoxification: We recognize that individuals with psychiatric disorders may also struggle with substance abuse issues that can interfere with their ability to manage the symptoms of substance use disorder with a co-occurring mental health concern. As a result, we provide detoxification services that allow individuals to safely withdraw from substances of abuse under the watchful eye of our physicians and nursing team. While we are unable to provide detox services for individuals utilizing methadone or Suboxone, we are able to maintain individuals who are already taking these medications.
Medication management: Many individuals struggling with mental health disorders, including substance use disorder, benefit from including medications in their treatment regimen. At Belmont, every patient in our inpatient programming meets with a member of our medical team for an initial medication evaluation and ongoing daily medication monitoring.
Individual therapy: Patients can make substantial progress in their treatment substance use disorder with a co-occurring mental health concern for when they have a regular opportunity to process emotions, triumphs, and setbacks within the safety of a one-on-one therapeutic relationship. To support this progress, we provide regular individual therapy and counseling sessions for every individual in our care. Frequency of sessions varies based on the patient’s age, unit, and need, as determined by collaboration between the patient and his or her treatment team. Patients meet with social services providers, case managers, rehab service providers, pastoral counselors, and other trainees and clinicians as recommended by the treatment team. Children and adolescents have daily individual therapy with members of their treatment team.
Group therapy: In addition to individual therapy, groups form the backbone of treatment for substance use disorder with a co-occurring mental health concern at Belmont Behavioral Health System. Led by members of our social services/case management, rehab, and nursing teams, groups are offered daily and provide a chance for patients to learn and practice coping skills while supporting and being supported by their peers. Our groups, provided at least twice daily, are focused on recovery and resilience and operate in modalities such as music therapy, leisure, art therapy, peer support, occupational therapy, talk therapy, psychoeducation, and creative expression. Groups cover a wide range of topics, some of which include:
- 12 Steps
- Cognitive-behavioral skills and interventions
- Stages of Change
- Medication education
- Substance abuse
- Trauma focused interventions
- ADLs (Activities of Daily Living)
- Dialectical behavioral therapy skills
- Meditation and mindfulness
- Managing psychosis/illness management
- Problem-solving and decision-making
- Building strengths and resilience
- Values and goals
- Healthy boundaries
- AM/PM Community Meeting
- Wellness and Recovery Action Planning
- Behavioral activation (ceramics, ice cream social, exercise/yoga, art, music, activities/games, team building/challenge course, etc.)
- AA/NA support groups
- Peer-run groups (motivational speaker series & Face to Face Friday)
In addition to these groups, patients are invited to attend monthly alumni support meetings that give them an opportunity to speak with Belmont alumni and explore methods for achieving long-term success in treatment.
Family therapy: Our more than 80 years of experience treating mental illnesses like substance use disorder has shown us that one person’s mental illness often affects his or her entire family. In addition, family support can sometimes make the difference between relapse and long-term success. As a result, we emphasize family involvement and therapy throughout a patient’s hospitalization. Our treatment team works with parents, grandparents, and other caregivers in order to develop the most complete treatment solutions that will best enable our patients to thrive after treatment. Our case managers meet with family members, schools, community agencies, and other organizations to develop coordinated discharge plans. On our child and adolescent units, family sessions can also include development and utilization of crisis and safety planning, development and utilization of coping and communications skills, exploration of the family dynamic, and ways to improve interpersonal skills within that dynamic.
Experiential therapy: Individual and group therapy are of enormous benefit, and we have found that our patients also benefit from involving more of their bodies and minds in their recovery process. Experiential therapies use embodiment and sensory experiences to deepen individuals’ engagement in treatment, increase empowerment, and promote a sense of safety. Some of these interventions include:
- Art therapy
- Music therapy
- Role playing
- Guided imagery
Education: For children and adolescents in our care, we recognize the importance of ensuring continuity in their education so that they are not forced to choose between mental health care and academic success. Children and adolescents attend two hours of schooling per day, receiving instruction that is specially tailored around their Individual Education Plans (IEPs). The social worker works closely with the child or adolescent and the Pennsylvania Child and Adolescent Service Program (CASSP) throughout the patient’s length of stay to ensure all services are planned collaboratively with the patient, his or her family, and all agencies involved in the child or adolescent’s life.
Other interventions: As a leading provider of mental health care in Pennsylvania, we are equipped to offer a number of other interventions to those in our care. Some of these include:
- Nutrition consultation: All individuals at our hospital have access to our staff dietician as needed.
- Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT): Individuals who are seeking alternatives to medication, or those for whom medications are not working, can elect to receive ECT for symptoms including depression, psychosis, catatonia, and mania. This form of treatment is quite safe and completely voluntary. Treatment generally involves a series of treatments two or three times a week for six to twelve treatments. In addition, maintenance treatments are often provided on an outpatient basis for the prevention of symptom relapse. Services are provided by certified ECT physicians, one of whom is Belmont’s Medical Director. The ECT physicians oversee ECT-trained nursing staff and an external group of certified registered nurse anesthetists.
- Internal medicine: We provide internal medicine services to all of our patients. Our admissions process includes a physical exam, and consultation with an internal medicine physician is available throughout the course of a hospital stay.
- Motivational speaker program: We recognize that it can be superbly helpful to hear from other individuals who have learned to manage mental illness, and we bring in volunteer speakers, many of whom are trained as certified peer specialists and who have lived experiences with mental illness and addiction, to offer personal insights into the challenges and successes of the recovery journey.
- Sensory programming (STAR Program): Individuals’ bodies can be powerful allies in the pursuit of improved mental health, so our STAR program (Sensory Tool Awareness and Routines) is used to foster an increased sense of safety, self-awareness, and control over patients’ lives by teaching tools which help to balance and regulate their nervous systems.
- Autism services: Our on-staff behavior specialist is certified in autism studies and provides consultation on behavioral interventions for individuals with autism and families of those individuals.
- Welcoming committee/Active treatment: As a part of our commitment to individually tailored treatment, we recognize that some individuals can benefit from interventions outside of groups, and we have developed resources that further allow patients to take treatment into their own hands. Within this intervention, we give patients a brief assessment and self-help materials to allow them to continue their growth outside of groups. We are also developing materials for individuals whose dominant language is not English.
Because recovery from substance use disorder with a co-occurring mental health concern is a journey, we recognize that inpatient care is only the beginning for many individuals. As such, our treatment teams, and especially our case workers, work with schools, community agencies, and other organizations to develop coordinated and integrated treatment and aftercare plans. We begin planning for discharge from day one of treatment so that our patients leave our hospital into the welcoming arms of community-based support and external resources, maximizing patients’ ability to continue the progress they made in treatment.
We put forth every effort to ensure that our patients can be successful in their recovery journeys. If you or a loved one is struggling with substance use disorder with a co-occurring mental health concern, please do not hesitate to contact us. Today could be the first day of a brighter future.