I have decided to be happy – because it’s good for my health. Voltaire

Elizabeth Hearn
Psychotherapist, London
HP/NCH
SMAPPH
Registration no: 0615
+447894084788

I am a person in longterm recovery (31 years) coupled with 28 years of working as an addiction counsellor clinician, therapist, educator and treatment director.

Speaking from personal experience, addiction is complex, a conundrum to any one who is not addicted is why anyone would knowingly self sabotage their life in self destructive ways that never deal with the underlying issues…ergo never processing anything, never finishing anything, fuelled by selfishness, obsessive thinking and compulsive behaviours.

Recovery is a continuum of self-care, connection and community. My life changed for the best when I became willing to accept challenges, big or small as a way of life.

I had a long way to go before I understood the pathos of people pleasing…needing to fix everyone else before myself…of course the airline in trouble analogy is superb…I can not save anyone else’s life until I have put MY oxygen mask on first.

First I needed to cease taking everything personally, and not define myself as a victim nor blame everyone else for my unhappiness.

What happened to me was not my fault. I was the archetypal innocent child, trying to cope with the chaos that an alcoholic parent causes…I felt conflicted and ashamed of my father, who was to the world outside our home…the classic all ground great guy but whose descent into hell-on-earth must have been painful for him…I know because no amount of alcohol or drugs ever took away a lifelong deep existential suffering….

Stigma stopped me seeking help. Denial stopped my father. Unbearable emotional pain, and shame meant all the good intentions to stop were not enough, because I had no defence against the first drink or drug. One was too many, a thousand not enough…

Negative energy/emotions have a habit of being expressed albeit always inappropriately… Suppressed anger, shame, pain, loneliness turned inward, became my personal hell on earth: addiction, obsession, compulsion, depression, violent mood swings, toxic relationships, hungover induced illness defined me in the immediacy of daily life.

Projected outward, it was cruel and meant to be towards other people. I remember gong with a friend to my first ever AA meeting and turning around to her and saying: “No wonder she drank, she is a mess!!!” referring to the person sharing their recovery to a bunch of strangers…

Neither willpower nor best intentions were enough to keep me stopped. Understanding why I used additively hadn’t been enough to free me.

Problems I kept thinking would eventually go away, kept getting worse every year. I hadn’t emotionally developed the way I should have, and I knew it.

It is said that desperation can bring a person into recovery…and is usually necessary before we are ready to build anew a relationship with God.

Newly sober, I began to pray in earnest…always on my knees, bowing down to God as I sought to surrender…I had lost the battle and knew this was a way to win that internal war with myself…

What I learned from 12step fellowships, from my recovery community, from engaging in the study of the 12steps with a sponsor was so exquisitely complimentary to my weekly 1-1 and group therapy that I will forever be grateful for this timeout from everyday life and time-in a totally immersive recovery process..it was two years that formed the foundation of life in longterm recovery..so much so that I learned to never rush people new to the recovery process….it takes at least a year to physically recovery, emotional recovery takes longer…because of need to process childhood trauma and this must always be with a therapist who can hold “the space” making it safe to unpack painful memories is going deep, but not staying there!

…as painful as it was in the beginning, I began to see the importance of each stage of recovery as a continuum of self care, ongoing, a journey not a destination…however it is was the end of suffering and the beginning of happiness….

Only through an effective partnership can we make the best use of our collective resources and work together to tackle our most difficult challenges – making a real difference to the prosperity and wellbeing of our communities.”

Addiction is not a criminal justice issue but a public health issue which requires specialist training and insight into the medical and biopsychosocial nature of the illness.

Addiction is a dysfunctional survival mechanism which victims of trauma use as a means of re-regulating a chaotic nervous system; any repeated behaviour, substance-related or not, in which a person feels compelled to persist, regardless of its negative impact on his life and the lives of others.

Addiction involves:

Dissatisfaction, irritability or intense craving when the object—be it a drug or other goal—is not immediately available.

Linking addiction with adverse childhood experiences and relational trauma.

The types of adverse childhood experience include:
Abuse
Physical
Sexual
Verbal
Neglect
Emotional

Growing up in a home where:
There are adults with alcohol or drug use problems.
There are adults who have mental health problems.
There is domestic violence.
There are adults who have spent time in prison.
Parents have separated.

There are also other types of childhood adversity that can have negative long term effects. These include bereavement, bullying, poverty and troubles within communities.

Trauma that is experienced in childhood disrupts the body’s ability to self-regulate psychologically and somatically.

This profound dysregulation of the nervous system has a major impact on a person and possibly affects both psychological and physical functions.

In some cases, psychological development is delayed or distorted, and identity formation must proceed along the “trauma lines” that result from dissociative defences and compartmentalization.

Thus, trauma has a severe impact upon an individual’s natural ability to function day-to-day. They may struggle to manage their emotions, to handle normal stress in the workplace or to run their homes.

Survivors of trauma therefore find strategies which enable them to self regulate their minds and bodies. Without these self regulating strategies, life would be simply too overwhelming.

Self regulating strategies used by survivors are often behaviors learned during early childhood. Sometimes survivors reenact the trauma they experienced or use coping strategies such as self harm.

There is also a likelihood of ‘self medicating’ behaviors such as the misuse of alcohol, sex, drugs or gambling, which expediate the feeling of detachment by providing adrenaline and/or endorphins.

Adrenaline and endorphins cause a distraction and a temporary release from the feelings of depression, anxiety and fear, common to survivors of trauma.

For those struggling with often chaotic/disordered thinking, being motivated to cope with challenges, substance abuse makes sense on some level. It provides the substance user with the desired disconnection from reality at a high price.

In comparison with other forms of self destructive behaviour: self harm, eating disorders, sex or gambling addictions, drug abuse brings about a greater, more immediate dose of the desired brain chemicals. It is therefore an immediate way for the trauma survivor to find release.

Poor impulse control can trigger sabotaging patterns. An internal battle with invasive memories, fear, depression or anxiety, disembodiment or disassociation is a way of removing self from experiences, the body and the world.

Therefore when these individuals pick up drugs or alcohol as a way to disconnect, they are taking them to be relieved of the emotional pain. Without these substances they may be unable to deal with the psychological or physical symptoms which occur due to their trauma.

Disconnection is a destructive way of altering consciousness and changing psychophysiological experience.

Drug use could therefore be viewed as resourceful but also a destructive survival method for those suffering with complex trauma.

Everyone has the right to access addiction and mental healthcare and to be treated with respect and dignity and for their individual recovery journey to be fully supported.

Implementing Addiction & Mental Healthcare A&E clinics within NHS-Hospitals is strategy that can address the opioid epidemic by making available accessible, 24/7 assessment, and treatment is a human rights-based, public health approach to ensure addiction and mental healthcare professionals are delivering the best possible care, and treatment in the immediacy of daily life, for individuals and communities.

I am proposing implementing 24/7 Addiction Emergency Care Clinics within A&E-NHS settings. Autonomous clinics. Accessible primary care inpatient care facilitated by trained in Addiction Medicine clinicians, first responders, doctors, psychiatrists, nurses, pharmacists, and associated healthcare professionals to work alongside the Scottish Recovery Consortium lived experience – support volunteers, 24/7 in addiction and mental health primary care integrated treatment programmes.

24/7 ADDICTION & MENTAL HEALTHCARE: People can not recover from active addiction without medically supervised inpatient healthcare. Implementing autonomous Addiction & Mental Healthcare A&E Clinics within NHS-Hospitals will provide accessible healthcare: a biopsychosocial assessment to determine individual treatment protocols for medically assisted inpatient treatment, medically assisted detox, inpatient primary care, after-care, outpatient peer-led community care.

24/7 SUPPORT: Implementing mandatory addiction medicine trainings for first responders, doctors, nurses and associated healthcare workers is essential. as in digitised linkage of essential services from the moment a person is identified as needed help.

LINKAGE: of all addiction and mental healthcare services will save lives, waiting times and ease the financial burden upon the NHS.

I am committed to overcoming prejudice, stigma, isolation and shame by personally striving for 24/7 within established A&E NHS Hospital settings, accessible inpatient and outpatient addiction public healthcare programmes to combat the opioid crisis, treat addiction and the coexistence of both a mental health and substance dependency ( co-occurring disorder) walk-ins, assisted and or ambulatory.

ADDICTION HEALTHCARE RIGHTS & RECOVERY
Recovery-oriented care is prevention, intervention, medically assisted detox, inpatient and outpatient continuing support, and connecting with a recovery community.

RECOVERY is a way of life, an attitude, and a way of approaching life’s challenges. The need is to meet the challenges of one’s life and find purpose within and beyond the limits of addiction while holding a positive sense of identity.

MANY PATHWAYS are available since the inception of Alcoholics Anonymous in 1939, clinical and recovery evidence demonstrates that when people engage in primary care addiction treatment, they have better outcomes than those not retained in treatment.

PATIENT SAFETY at risk, vulnerable to engage in treatment because addiction healthcare is a human right.

Addiction is characterized by an inability to consistently abstain or reduce substance use, impairment in behavioural control, craving, tolerance, and interference with interpersonal relationships, occupational responsibilities, recreational activities, and emotional response.

Like other chronic diseases, addiction often involves cycles of relapse and remission and recovery is about connection – lets engage vulnerable, isolated and disenfranchised, at risk people to a compassionate addiction healthcare care regimen.

Otherwise, without treatment or engagement in recovery activities, addiction is progressive and will often result in disability, or premature death.

And while the cost of addressing every facet of the addiction crisis is substantial, the cost of doing less than what is absolutely necessary is far more.

TOGETHER WE CAN

Overcome adversity, and strengthen our nation’s addiction prevention and treatment infrastructure and expand access to evidence-based care is working in partnership with addiction trained clinicians to pursue bold, systemic solutions.

There is no time left for incremental policy changes – we need to come together as a UNITED KINGDOM to both implement and fund addiction healthcare programmes that will comprehensively combat untreated, complex, co-occurring chronic disease of addiction.

Implementing a biopsychosocial evidence-based addiction healthcare treatment pathway that UK first responders, doctors, nurses need to be trained in to effectively treat addicted patients.

In my 28-year, professional role, as an addiction clinician, and a person in long term recovery (31years) I continue to advance the recognition of mental health and freedom from addiction as being essential to overall health. Such recognition and focus will help to improve access to and integration of addiction healthcare services, to support and sustain positive outcomes, and address gaps and disparities in service delivery.

Addiction medicine is a medical subspecialty, formally recognized since 1990, concerned with the prevention, evaluation, diagnosis, treatment, and recovery of persons with the disease of addiction, of those with substance-related health conditions, and of people who show unhealthy use of substances, including nicotine, alcohol, prescription medications, and licit and illicit drugs.

MANY PATHS TO RECOVERY

• The long overdue need for specialised addiction medicine training and treatment directives in which addiction/COD is treated concurrently with related physical health, and social issues.

• Addiction healthcare treatment that combines essential medical and psychopharmacology interventions uniquely tailored to each person’s needs.

The use of medications for the patient with addiction involving opioid use can be appropriate across all levels of care. Pharmacotherapy is not a “level of care” in addiction treatment but one component of multidisciplinary treatment.

While medication as a stand-alone intervention has been utilized in North America and internationally, evidence supports and recommends that the use of medications in the treatment of addiction be part of a broad biopsychosocial intervention appropriate to the patient’s needs and to the resources available in the patient’s community.

Addiction should be considered a biopsychosocial co-occurring disorder, for which the use of medication(s) is but only one component of overall treatment.

A BIOPSYCHOSOCIAL ASSESSMENT TEMPLATE:
http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/sapc/NetworkProviders/ClinicalForms/TS/AssessmentToolAdultsPaperVersion.pdf

The following is an extract from the ASAM Strategic Plan and provides guiding principles:

Positive changes are seen as starting points for the recovery process: reduced harm, safer use, reduced use, moderation and potential abstinence.

A comprehensive initial assessment will determine an initial person-centred treatment plan based on substance use severity, the psychobiosocial factors, multiple meanings and functions of the behaviour, motivation to change, and insight.

Effective treatment has a primary focus on engagement and therapeutic alliance throughout the assessment process that “starts where the person is” with compassion, respect and acceptance, because creating safety and support are seen as essential to the therapeutic outcomes.

Teaching self-management skills to address urges and difficult emotions is often essential. An ongoing assessment throughout treatment deepens both client and therapist awareness of the addiction severity and its meaning and functions.

Exploring the client’s resistance to change reveals the issues that need new solutions. As these issues are clarified, positive change goals around the substance use and these issues can be established.

And, finally, a person centred plan for pursuing these positive changes can be developed collaboratively between client and therapist. The plan may include a variety of therapeutic modalities, lifestyle changes, health practices and medications depending on the client’s needs.

I believe that appropriately trained medical staff, supported by trained volunteers with lived experience in personal recovery, can save lives, stabilise chronic to acute stages of addiction and negative prejudices which are common when dealing with these patients.

These efforts, in turn, can save lives, reduce the financial burden of treating addiction to the health care system and support the interdisciplinary addiction medicine team.

RESEARCH AND EVALUATION
These specialised in addiction medicine clinics will conducts high quality research that can broadens and deepen the understanding of addiction treatment and care delivery.

Principles of Effective Treatment

Addiction is a complex but treatable disease that affects brain function and behaviour. Drugs of abuse alter the brain’s structure and function, resulting in changes that persist long after drug use has ceased.


No single treatment is appropriate for everyone. Treatment varies depending on the type of drug and the characteristics of the patients. Matching treatment settings, interventions, and services to an individual’s particular problems and needs is critical to his or her ultimate success in returning to productive functioning in the family, workplace, and society.
Treatment needs to be readily available. Because drug-addicted individuals may be uncertain about entering treatment, taking advantage of available services the moment people are ready for treatment is critical. Potential patients can be lost if treatment is not immediately available or readily accessible.
Effective treatment attends to multiple needs of the individual, not just his or her drug abuse. To be effective, treatment must address the individual’s drug abuse and any associated medical, psychological, social, vocational, and legal problems. It is also important that treatment be appropriate to the individual’s age, gender, ethnicity, and culture.
Remaining in treatment for an adequate period of time is critical. The appropriate duration for an individual depends on the type and degree of the patient’s problems and needs.
Behavioural therapies—including individual, family, or group counselling—are the most commonly used forms of drug abuse treatment. Behavioural therapies vary in their focus and may involve addressing a patient’s motivation to change, providing incentives for abstinence, building skills to resist drug use, replacing drug-using activities with constructive and rewarding activities, improving problem-solving skills, and facilitating better interpersonal relationships.
Medications are an important element of treatment for many patients, especially when combined with counselling and other behavioural therapies. For example, methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone (including a new long-acting formulation) are effective in helping individuals addicted to heroin or other opioids stabilize their lives and reduce their illicit drug use.
An individual’s treatment and services plan must be assessed continually and modified as necessary to ensure that it meets his or her changing needs. A patient may require varying combinations of services and treatment components during the course of treatment and recovery.
Many individuals have co-occurring disorders with other mental illnesses, treatment should address both (and all), including the use of medications as appropriate.
Medically assisted detoxification is only the first stage of addiction treatment and by itself does little to change long-term drug abuse. Although medically assisted detoxification can safely manage the acute physical symptoms of withdrawal and can, for some, pave the way for effective long-term addiction treatment, detoxification alone is rarely sufficient to help addicted individuals achieve long-term abstinence.
Treatment does not need to be voluntary to be effective. Sanctions or enticements from family, employment settings, and/or the criminal justice system can significantly increase treatment entry, retention rates, and the ultimate success of drug treatment interventions.
Drug use during treatment must be monitored continuously, as lapses during treatment do occur. Knowing their drug use is being monitored can be a powerful incentive for patients and can help them withstand urges to use drugs. Monitoring also provides an early indication of a return to drug use, signalling a possible need to adjust an individual’s treatment plan to better meet his or her needs.
Treatment programs should test patients for the presence of HIV/AIDS, hepatitis B and C, tuberculosis, and other infectious diseases as well as provide targeted risk-reduction counselling, linking patients to treatment if necessary. Typically, drug abuse treatment addresses some of the drug-related behaviours that put people at risk of infectious diseases. Targeted counselling focused on reducing infectious disease risk can help patients further reduce or avoid substance-related and other high-risk behaviours.
Moreover, engaging in substance abuse treatment can facilitate adherence to other medical treatments. Substance abuse treatment facilities should provide onsite, rapid HIV testing rather than referrals to offsite testing—research shows that doing so increases the likelihood that patients will be tested and receive their test results. Highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) has proven effective in combating HIV, including among drug-abusing populations, and help link them to HIV treatment if they test positive.
If nothing changes, nothing changes
Posted on March 10, 2020 Edit
I am safe.

YOU ARE NOT ALONE

One of the most difficult things about hard times is that we often feel that we are going through them alone. But we are not alone.

This life itself is only possible because of the thousands of generations before you, survivors who have carried the lamp of humanity through difficult times from one generation to another.


Recently I was asked to lead a talk on compassion to a small circle of close friends, our connection; a mutual friend’s suicide.

I held the space with punctuated moments of self reflective silence, often this all one can do, just be present to one noter’s pain and suffering.

Grief is a forever experience…a continuum of processing waves of complex emotions, agonising grief, confusion, guilt and anger, loss and fear.

Opening up the talk allowed us to compassionately connect with each other’s loss in the presence of true compassion we were experiencing.

Suffering is part of our humanity, and part of the mystery that we share.

I am not alone not alone in suffering, nor are when a family member is suffering from illness or addiction. You are not alone. You are sharing in the inevitable trouble of human incarnation. On this very day, hundreds of thousands of others are also dealing with loss of a loved one.

If you can, breathe with them and hold their pain mindfully with yours, sharing in your heart a spirit of courage and compassion.

For thousands of generations we humans have survived hard times. We know how to do this. And when we sense our connection, we help each other.

Two women in nearby towns in northern Canada were forced to venture out on a fierce winter night. One was taking her pregnant daughter to the hospital; the other was driving to take care of her ill father.

They made their way along the same road from opposite directions, through hurricane winds and pelting snow. Suddenly each was stopped on opposite sides of a huge fallen tree that blocked the road.

It took them only a few minutes to share their stories, exchange car keys, and set forth in each other’s cars to complete their journeys.

As you open beyond the self, you realise that others are part of your extended family.


Separation is an illusion. You and I are not separate. We are interdependently connected.

Imagine each breath that we are inter-breathing carbon dioxide and oxygen with the our complex biosphere.

We stood in and stared at this magnificent Olive tree, guarding the ancient aqua duct grounds, Provence.

Daily nourishment joins us with the rhythms of bees, connects our body with the collaborative dance of myriad species of plants and animals.


Everything is connected. Nothing is separate. Unless we understand this, we are split between caring for ourselves or caring for the troubles of the world. “I arise in the morning,” wrote essayist E. B. White, “torn between a desire to save the world and an inclination to savor it.” A psychology of interdependence helps to solve this dilemma.

Through the loving awareness of mindfulness and meditation we discover that the duality of inner and outer is false. We can hold all the beauty and the pain of life in our heart and breathe together with courage and compassion.

Daily walks and talks @ Dulwich Park.

ADDICTION & MENTAL HEALTHCARE A&E CLINICS

ELIZABETH HEARN
Psychotherapist, London.
HP/NCH, SMAPPH
Registration no: 0615
+447894084788

I am a person in longterm recovery (31 years) coupled with 28 years of working as an addiction counsellor clinician, therapist, educator and treatment director.

Speaking from personal experience, addiction is complex, recovery is a continuum of challenges and helping the still suffering addict to engage in a treatment programme has to be the hardest of all because the help that is available is becoming increasing difficult to access.

Stigma stopped me seeking help. Unbearable emotional pain, and shame meant all the good intentions to stop were not enough, because I had no defence against the first drink or drug. One was too many, a thousand not enough…

Only through an effective partnership can we make the best use of our collective resources and work together to tackle our most difficult challenges – making a real difference to the prosperity and wellbeing of our communities.”

Addiction is not a criminal justice issue but a public health issue which requires specialist training and insight into the medical and biopsychosocial nature of the illness.

Addiction is a dysfunctional survival mechanism which victims of trauma use as a means of re-regulating a chaotic nervous system; any repeated behaviour, substance-related or not, in which a person feels compelled to persist, regardless of its negative impact on his life and the lives of others.

Addiction involves:

Dissatisfaction, irritability or intense craving when the object—be it a drug or other goal—is not immediately available.

Linking addiction with adverse childhood experiences and relational trauma.

The types of adverse childhood experience include:
Abuse
Physical
Sexual
Verbal
Neglect
Emotional

Growing up in a home where:
There are adults with alcohol or drug use problems.
There are adults who have mental health problems.
There is domestic violence.
There are adults who have spent time in prison.
Parents have separated.

There are also other types of childhood adversity that can have negative long term effects. These include bereavement, bullying, poverty and troubles within communities.

Trauma that is experienced in childhood disrupts the body’s ability to self-regulate psychologically and somatically.

This profound dysregulation of the nervous system has a major impact on a person and possibly affects both psychological and physical functions.

In some cases, psychological development is delayed or distorted, and identity formation must proceed along the “trauma lines” that result from dissociative defences and compartmentalization.

Thus, trauma has a severe impact upon an individual’s natural ability to function day-to-day. They may struggle to manage their emotions, to handle normal stress in the workplace or to run their homes.

Survivors of trauma therefore find strategies which enable them to self regulate their minds and bodies. Without these self regulating strategies, life would be simply too overwhelming.

Self regulating strategies used by survivors are often behaviors learned during early childhood. Sometimes survivors reenact the trauma they experienced or use coping strategies such as self harm.

There is also a likelihood of ‘self medicating’ behaviors such as the misuse of alcohol, sex, drugs or gambling, which expediate the feeling of detachment by providing adrenaline and/or endorphins.

Adrenaline and endorphins cause a distraction and a temporary release from the feelings of depression, anxiety and fear, common to survivors of trauma.

For those struggling with often chaotic/disordered thinking, being motivated to cope with challenges, substance abuse makes sense on some level. It provides the substance user with the desired disconnection from reality at a high price.

In comparison with other forms of self destructive behaviour: self harm, eating disorders, sex or gambling addictions, drug abuse brings about a greater, more immediate dose of the desired brain chemicals. It is therefore an immediate way for the trauma survivor to find release.

Poor impulse control can trigger sabotaging patterns. An internal battle with invasive memories, fear, depression or anxiety, disembodiment or disassociation is a way of removing self from experiences, the body and the world.

Therefore when these individuals pick up drugs or alcohol as a way to disconnect, they are taking them to be relieved of the emotional pain. Without these substances they may be unable to deal with the psychological or physical symptoms which occur due to their trauma.

Disconnection is a destructive way of altering consciousness and changing psychophysiological experience.

Drug use could therefore be viewed as resourceful but also a destructive survival method for those suffering with complex trauma.

Everyone has the right to access addiction and mental healthcare and to be treated with respect and dignity and for their individual recovery journey to be fully supported.

Implementing Addiction & Mental Healthcare A&E clinics within NHS-Hospitals is strategy that can address the opioid epidemic by making available accessible, 24/7 assessment, and treatment is a human rights-based, public health approach to ensure addiction and mental healthcare professionals are delivering the best possible care, and treatment in the immediacy of daily life, for individuals and communities.

I am proposing implementing 24/7 Addiction Emergency Care Clinics within A&E-NHS settings. Autonomous clinics. Accessible primary care inpatient care facilitated by trained in Addiction Medicine clinicians, first responders, doctors, psychiatrists, nurses, pharmacists, and associated healthcare professionals to work alongside the Scottish Recovery Consortium lived experience – support volunteers, 24/7 in addiction and mental health primary care integrated treatment programmes.

24/7 ADDICTION & MENTAL HEALTHCARE: People can not recover from active addiction without medically supervised inpatient healthcare. Implementing autonomous Addiction & Mental Healthcare A&E Clinics within NHS-Hospitals will provide accessible healthcare: a biopsychosocial assessment to determine individual treatment protocols for medically assisted inpatient treatment, medically assisted detox, inpatient primary care, after-care, outpatient peer-led community care.

24/7 SUPPORT: Implementing mandatory addiction medicine trainings for first responders, doctors, nurses and associated healthcare workers is essential. as in digitised linkage of essential services from the moment a person is identified as needed help.

LINKAGE: of all addiction and mental healthcare services will save lives, waiting times and ease the financial burden upon the NHS.

I am committed to overcoming prejudice, stigma, isolation and shame by personally striving for 24/7 within established A&E NHS Hospital settings, accessible inpatient and outpatient addiction public healthcare programmes to combat the opioid crisis, treat addiction and the coexistence of both a mental health and substance dependency ( co-occurring disorder) walk-ins, assisted and or ambulatory.

ADDICTION HEALTHCARE RIGHTS & RECOVERY
Recovery-oriented care is prevention, intervention, medically assisted detox, inpatient and outpatient continuing support, and connecting with a recovery community.

RECOVERY is a way of life, an attitude, and a way of approaching life’s challenges. The need is to meet the challenges of one’s life and find purpose within and beyond the limits of addiction while holding a positive sense of identity.

MANY PATHWAYS are available since the inception of Alcoholics Anonymous in 1939, clinical and recovery evidence demonstrates that when people engage in primary care addiction treatment, they have better outcomes than those not retained in treatment.

PATIENT SAFETY at risk, vulnerable to engage in treatment because addiction healthcare is a human right.

Addiction is characterized by an inability to consistently abstain or reduce substance use, impairment in behavioural control, craving, tolerance, and interference with interpersonal relationships, occupational responsibilities, recreational activities, and emotional response.

Like other chronic diseases, addiction often involves cycles of relapse and remission and recovery is about connection – lets engage vulnerable, isolated and disenfranchised, at risk people to a compassionate addiction healthcare care regimen.

Otherwise, without treatment or engagement in recovery activities, addiction is progressive and will often result in disability, or premature death.

And while the cost of addressing every facet of the addiction crisis is substantial, the cost of doing less than what is absolutely necessary is far more.

TOGETHER WE CAN: strengthen our nation’s addiction prevention and treatment infrastructure and expand access to evidence-based care is working in partnership with addiction trained clinicians to pursue bold, systemic solutions.

There is no time left for incremental policy changes – we need to come together as a UNITED KINGDOM to both implement and fund addiction healthcare programmes that will comprehensively combat untreated, complex, co-occurring chronic disease of addiction.

Implementing a biopsychosocial evidence-based addiction healthcare treatment pathway that UK first responders, doctors, nurses need to be trained in to effectively treat addicted patients.

In my 28-year, professional role, as an addiction clinician, and a person in long term recovery (31years) I continue to advance the recognition of mental health and freedom from addiction as being essential to overall health. Such recognition and focus will help to improve access to and integration of addiction healthcare services, to support and sustain positive outcomes, and address gaps and disparities in service delivery.

Addiction medicine is a medical subspecialty, formally recognized since 1990, concerned with the prevention, evaluation, diagnosis, treatment, and recovery of persons with the disease of addiction, of those with substance-related health conditions, and of people who show unhealthy use of substances, including nicotine, alcohol, prescription medications, and licit and illicit drugs.

MANY PATHS TO RECOVERY.

• The long overdue need for specialised addiction medicine training and treatment directives in which addiction/COD is treated concurrently with related physical health, and social issues.

• Addiction healthcare treatment that combines essential medical and psychopharmacology interventions uniquely tailored to each person’s needs.

The use of medications for the patient with addiction involving opioid use can be appropriate across all levels of care. Pharmacotherapy is not a “level of care” in addiction treatment but one component of multidisciplinary treatment.

While medication as a stand-alone intervention has been utilized in North America and internationally, evidence supports and recommends that the use of medications in the treatment of addiction be part of a broad biopsychosocial intervention appropriate to the patient’s needs and to the resources available in the patient’s community.

Addiction should be considered a biopsychosocial co-occurring disorder, for which the use of medication(s) is but only one component of overall treatment.

A BIOPSYCHOSOCIAL ASSESSMENT TEMPLATE:
http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/sapc/NetworkProviders/ClinicalForms/TS/AssessmentToolAdultsPaperVersion.pdf

The following is an extract from the ASAM Strategic Plan and provides guiding principles:

• Positive changes are seen as starting points for the recovery process: reduced harm, safer use, reduced use, moderation and potential abstinence.

• A comprehensive initial assessment will determine an initial personalized treatment plan based on substance use severity, the psychobiosocial factors, multiple meanings and functions of the behaviour, motivation to change, and insight.

• Effective treatment has a primary focus on engagement and therapeutic alliance throughout the assessment process that “starts where the person is” with compassion, respect and acceptance, because creating safety and support are seen as essential to the therapeutic outcomes.

• Teaching self-management skills to address urges and difficult emotions is often essential. An ongoing assessment throughout treatment deepens both client and therapist awareness of the addiction severity and its meaning and functions.

• Exploring the client’s resistance to change reveals the issues that need new solutions. As these issues are clarified, positive change goals around the substance use and these issues can be established.

And, finally, a person centred plan for pursuing these positive changes can be developed collaboratively between client and therapist. The plan may include a variety of therapeutic modalities, lifestyle changes, health practices and medications depending on the client’s needs.

I believe that appropriately trained medical staff, supported by trained volunteers with lived experience in personal recovery, can save lives, stabilise chronic to acute stages of addiction and negative prejudices which are common when dealing with these patients.

These efforts, in turn, can save lives, reduce the financial burden of treating addiction to the health care system and support the interdisciplinary addiction medicine team.

RESEARCH AND EVALUATION
These specialised in addiction medicine clinics will conducts high quality research that can broadens and deepen the understanding of addiction treatment and care delivery.

Principles of Effective Treatment

Addiction is a complex but treatable disease that affects brain function and behaviour. Drugs of abuse alter the brain’s structure and function, resulting in changes that persist long after drug use has ceased.
No single treatment is appropriate for everyone. Treatment varies depending on the type of drug and the characteristics of the patients. Matching treatment settings, interventions, and services to an individual’s particular problems and needs is critical to his or her ultimate success in returning to productive functioning in the family, workplace, and society.
Treatment needs to be readily available. Because drug-addicted individuals may be uncertain about entering treatment, taking advantage of available services the moment people are ready for treatment is critical. Potential patients can be lost if treatment is not immediately available or readily accessible.
Effective treatment attends to multiple needs of the individual, not just his or her drug abuse. To be effective, treatment must address the individual’s drug abuse and any associated medical, psychological, social, vocational, and legal problems. It is also important that treatment be appropriate to the individual’s age, gender, ethnicity, and culture.
Remaining in treatment for an adequate period of time is critical. The appropriate duration for an individual depends on the type and degree of the patient’s problems and needs.
Behavioural therapies—including individual, family, or group counselling—are the most commonly used forms of drug abuse treatment. Behavioural therapies vary in their focus and may involve addressing a patient’s motivation to change, providing incentives for abstinence, building skills to resist drug use, replacing drug-using activities with constructive and rewarding activities, improving problem-solving skills, and facilitating better interpersonal relationships.
Medications are an important element of treatment for many patients, especially when combined with counselling and other behavioural therapies. For example, methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone (including a new long-acting formulation) are effective in helping individuals addicted to heroin or other opioids stabilize their lives and reduce their illicit drug use.
An individual’s treatment and services plan must be assessed continually and modified as necessary to ensure that it meets his or her changing needs. A patient may require varying combinations of services and treatment components during the course of treatment and recovery.
Many individuals have co-occurring disorders with other mental illnesses, treatment should address both (and all), including the use of medications as appropriate.
Medically assisted detoxification is only the first stage of addiction treatment and by itself does little to change long-term drug abuse. Although medically assisted detoxification can safely manage the acute physical symptoms of withdrawal and can, for some, pave the way for effective long-term addiction treatment, detoxification alone is rarely sufficient to help addicted individuals achieve long-term abstinence.
Treatment does not need to be voluntary to be effective. Sanctions or enticements from family, employment settings, and/or the criminal justice system can significantly increase treatment entry, retention rates, and the ultimate success of drug treatment interventions.
Drug use during treatment must be monitored continuously, as lapses during treatment do occur. Knowing their drug use is being monitored can be a powerful incentive for patients and can help them withstand urges to use drugs. Monitoring also provides an early indication of a return to drug use, signalling a possible need to adjust an individual’s treatment plan to better meet his or her needs.
Treatment programs should test patients for the presence of HIV/AIDS, hepatitis B and C, tuberculosis, and other infectious diseases as well as provide targeted risk-reduction counselling, linking patients to treatment if necessary. Typically, drug abuse treatment addresses some of the drug-related behaviours that put people at risk of infectious diseases. Targeted counselling focused on reducing infectious disease risk can help patients further reduce or avoid substance-related and other high-risk behaviours.
Moreover, engaging in substance abuse treatment can facilitate adherence to other medical treatments. Substance abuse treatment facilities should provide onsite, rapid HIV testing rather than referrals to offsite testing—research shows that doing so increases the likelihood that patients will be tested and receive their test results. Highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) has proven effective in combating HIV, including among drug-abusing populations, and help link them to HIV treatment if they test positive.
If nothing changes, nothing changes

I am safe.

Elizabeth Hearn
HP/NCH
SMAPPH
Registration no: 0615
ELIZABETHHEARN.COM
+447894084788

Fear. Many of us will identify with having past, present and future-based anxiety about living and dying. Often traced back to adverse childhood experiences when either or both parents were emotionally absent.

Children from the moment they take their first breath will feel loved, nurtured and safe when they are lovingly held….it is this skin-to-skin warmth that creates a continuum of compassionate care…

So, by the time we are 7 we have heard thousands of hours of parental conversations…the forms the foundation of our self talk…which can dominate a person’s thinking…training the mind into a meditative state calmness will ensure peace of mind…I use a script in a hypnotherapy session that builds upon sustainable self empowerment.

So that when a repeated negative thought arises, one of worry and anxiety, of self-criticism or depression, I recommend, first study it. When does it arise? How often? What is its tone of voice? Does it appear as words or have images too? What story does it want you to believe? How painful is it to hear it over and over? Now that you see it clearly, you can say to the thought, “Thank you for trying to protect me.”
Then choose a suitable replacement such as:
“I am a compassionate person, I care for people.”
“I care for myself.”
“May I be safe and protected.”
“I will live with a peaceful heart.”
“A day at a time.”
“I will live with trust and kindness.”

We can remove unhealthy thought patterns such as self-judgment, worry and anxiety by thought substitution.

What is required is the selection of a helpful substitute and repeated practice. Repetition is key. Repetition, compassion, and the belief that the painful cycles of thought can be transformed all have a part in developing new patterns of thought.

ADDICTION & MENTAL HEALTHCARE A&E CLINICS.

ELIZABETH HEARN
Psychotherapist, London.
HP/NCH, SMAPPH
Registration no: 0615
ELIZABETHHEARN.COM
+447894084788

Consciously living consciously in recovery is more than possible, it can be a daily actualising process of positive traits…however it can be not be enough to ensure being happy in the most basic and most ordinary of ways if I let my mind drift into the frequency of addictive, hardwired behaviours: non-acceptance, procrastination, perfectionism, power-struggles, comparisons, and or the ego wanting more…attention, and wanting instant gratification.


In undertaking a life in recovery, what matters is simple: We must make certain that our path is connected 24/7 with our mind, body and soul. My relationship with myself sets the tone of all my relationships…

Spiritual life embodies the “coming close..going away” stages of intimacy…there are times when I need to be detach in the immediacy of daily life and retreat… into the calm…that depending upon the season, and time of day is eatery the garden, fully shaded, underneath the laurels or to the bedroom…fortunately my family support this by affirming how calm I am when I reappear!

I adore the quietude that defines my long term recovery…
self reflective “question-time” are my favourite… “Am I following a path with heart that regards the values I have chosen to live by?”

“Where do I need to put my intention and attention?” When I am still and listen deeply, even for a moment, I know if I am following a path with heart.


The things that matter most in my lives are fabulously simple… They are the tender moments I treasure… simple and profound intimacy is the love that I longed for prior to personal recovery.

Mother Teresa put it like this: “In this life we cannot do great things. We can only do small things with great love.”


I continue to have the privilege of being in community with the global recovery community whose collective intention is to do their best to consciously live consciously….LOVE. SERVE. REMEMBER.

I remember to remember by asking myself “Am I openhearted?” “Am I living fully? ” “Am I being the best version of me?” “Am I accepting?” “Am I trusting the process that is letting go?”

Simple, leaning into the deepness questions go to the very heart of living the spiritual life. When I consider loving well and living fully, I can see the triggers that hijack my serenity i.e an attachment to a person, place or thing that doe not love me back…is a red flag to self care…


I want to be able to so say on whatever day is the end of my life, “Yes, I have lived my path with heart.”

ADDICTION & MENTAL HEALTHCARE A&E

A Biopsychosocial treatment approach.

Only through an effective partnership can we make the best use of our collective resources and work together to tackle our most difficult challenges – making a real difference to the prosperity and wellbeing of our communities.”

Addiction is not a criminal justice issue but a public health issue which requires specialist training and insight into the medical and biopsychosocial nature of the illness.

Addiction is a dysfunctional survival mechanism which victims of trauma use as a means of re-regulating a chaotic nervous system; any repeated behaviour, substance-related or not, in which a person feels compelled to persist, regardless of its negative impact on his life and the lives of others.

Addiction involves:

  1. compulsive engagement with the behaviour, a preoccupation with it
  2. impaired control over the behaviour
  3. persistence or relapse, despite evidence of harm
  4. dissatisfaction, irritability or intense craving when the object—be it a drug or other goal—is not immediately available.

Linking addiction with adverse childhood experiences is the relational template of addiction and mental healthcare.

There are 10 major types of adverse childhood experience. These include:
Abuse:
Physical
Sexual
Verbal.
Neglect:
Emotional
Physical.

Growing up in a home where:
There are adults with alcohol or drug use problems.
There are adults who have mental health problems.
There is domestic violence.
There are adults who have spent time in prison.
Parents have separated.
There are also other types of childhood adversity that can have negative long term effects. These include bereavement, bullying, poverty and troubles within communities.


Trauma that is experienced in childhood disrupts the body’s ability to self-regulate psychologically and somatically.

This profound dysregulation of the nervous system has a major impact on a person and possibly affects both psychological and physical functions.

In some cases, psychological development is delayed or distorted, and identity formation must proceed along the “trauma lines” that result from dissociative defences and compartmentalization.

Thus, trauma has a severe impact upon an individual’s natural ability to function day-to-day. They may struggle to manage their emotions, to handle normal stress in the workplace or to run their homes.

Survivors of trauma therefore find strategies which enable them to self regulate their minds and bodies. Without these self regulating strategies, life would be simply too overwhelming.


Self regulating strategies used by survivors are often behaviors learned during early childhood. Sometimes survivors reenact the trauma they experienced or use coping strategies such as self harm.

There is also a likelihood of ‘self medicating’ behaviors such as the misuse of alcohol, sex, drugs or gambling, which expediate the feeling of detachment by providing adrenaline and/or endorphins.

Adrenaline and endorphins cause a distraction and a temporary release from the feelings of depression, anxiety and fear, common to survivors of trauma.


For those struggling with often chaotic/disordered thinking, being motivated to cope with challenges, substance abuse makes sense on some level. It provides the substance user with the desired disconnection from reality at a high price.

In comparison with other forms of self destructive behaviour: self harm, eating disorders, sex or gambling addictions, drug abuse brings about a greater, more immediate dose of the desired brain chemicals. It is therefore an immediate way for the trauma survivor to find release.


Poor impulse control can trigger sabotaging patterns. An internal battle with invasive memories, fear, depression or anxiety, disembodiment or disassociation is a way of removing self from experiences, the body and the world.

Therefore when these individuals pick up drugs or alcohol as a way to disconnect, they are taking them to be relieved of the emotional pain. Without these substances they may be unable to deal with the psychological or physical symptoms which occur due to their trauma.

Disconnection is a destructive way of altering consciousness and changing psychophysiological experience.

Drug use could therefore be viewed as resourceful but also a destructive survival method for those suffering with complex trauma.

Everyone has the right to access addiction and mental healthcare and to be treated with respect and dignity and for their individual recovery journey to be fully supported.

Implementing Addiction & Mental Healthcare A&E clinics within NHS-Hospitals is strategy that can address the opioid epidemic by making available accessible, 24/7 assessment, and treatment is a human rights-based, public health approach to ensure addiction and mental healthcare professionals are delivering the best possible care, and treatment in the immediacy of daily life, for individuals and communities.

I am proposing implementing 24/7 Addiction Emergency Care Clinics within A&E-NHS settings. Autonomous clinics. Accessible primary care inpatient care facilitated by trained in Addiction Medicine clinicians, first responders, doctors, psychiatrists, nurses, pharmacists, and associated healthcare professionals to work alongside the Scottish Recovery Consortium lived experience – support volunteers, 24/7 in addiction and mental health primary care integrated treatment programmes.

24/7 ADDICTION & MENTAL HEALTHCARE: People can not recover from active addiction without medically supervised inpatient healthcare. Implementing autonomous Addiction & Mental Healthcare A&E Clinics within NHS-Hospitals will provide accessible healthcare: a biopsychosocial assessment to determine individual treatment protocols for medically assisted inpatient treatment, medically assisted detox, inpatient primary care, after-care, outpatient peer-led community care.

24/7 SUPPORT: Implementing mandatory addiction medicine trainings for first responders, doctors, nurses and associated healthcare workers is essential. as in digitised linkage of essential services from the moment a person is identified as needed help.

LINKAGE: of all addiction and mental healthcare services will save lives, waiting times and ease the financial burden upon the NHS.

I am committed to overcoming prejudice, stigma, isolation and shame by personally striving for 24/7 within established A&E NHS Hospital settings, accessible inpatient and outpatient addiction public healthcare programmes to combat the opioid crisis, treat addiction and the coexistence of both a mental health and substance dependency ( co-occurring disorder) walk-ins, assisted and or ambulatory.

ADDICTION HEALTHCARE RIGHTS & RECOVERY
Recovery-oriented care is prevention, intervention, medically assisted detox, inpatient and outpatient continuing support, and connecting with a recovery community.

RECOVERY is a way of life, an attitude, and a way of approaching life’s challenges. The need is to meet the challenges of one’s life and find purpose within and beyond the limits of addiction while holding a positive sense of identity.

MANY PATHWAYS are available since the inception of Alcoholics Anonymous in 1939, clinical and recovery evidence demonstrates that when people engage in primary care addiction treatment, they have better outcomes than those not retained in treatment.

PATIENT SAFETY at risk, vulnerable to engage in treatment because addiction healthcare is a human right.

Addiction is characterized by an inability to consistently abstain or reduce substance use, impairment in behavioural control, craving, tolerance, and interference with interpersonal relationships, occupational responsibilities, recreational activities, and emotional response.

Like other chronic diseases, addiction often involves cycles of relapse and remission and recovery is about connection – lets engage vulnerable, isolated and disenfranchised, at risk people to a compassionate addiction healthcare care regimen.

Otherwise, without treatment or engagement in recovery activities, addiction is progressive and will often result in disability, or premature death.

And while the cost of addressing every facet of the addiction crisis is substantial, the cost of doing less than what is absolutely necessary is far more.

TOGETHER WE CAN: strengthen our nation’s addiction prevention and treatment infrastructure and expand access to evidence-based care is working in partnership with addiction trained clinicians to pursue bold, systemic solutions.

There is no time left for incremental policy changes – we need to come together as a UNITED KINGDOM to both implement and fund addiction healthcare programmes that will comprehensively combat untreated, complex, co-occurring chronic disease of addiction.

Implementing a biopsychosocial evidence-based addiction healthcare treatment pathway that UK first responders, doctors, nurses need to be trained in to effectively treat addicted patients.

In my 28-year, professional role, as an addiction clinician, and a person in long term recovery (31years) I continue to advance the recognition of mental health and freedom from addiction as being essential to overall health. Such recognition and focus will help to improve access to and integration of addiction healthcare services, to support and sustain positive outcomes, and address gaps and disparities in service delivery.

Addiction medicine is a medical subspecialty, formally recognized since 1990, concerned with the prevention, evaluation, diagnosis, treatment, and recovery of persons with the disease of addiction, of those with substance-related health conditions, and of people who show unhealthy use of substances, including nicotine, alcohol, prescription medications, and licit and illicit drugs.

MANY PATHS TO RECOVERY.

• The long overdue need for specialised addiction medicine training and treatment directives in which addiction/COD is treated concurrently with related physical health, and social issues.

• Addiction healthcare treatment that combines essential medical and psychopharmacology interventions uniquely tailored to each person’s needs.

The use of medications for the patient with addiction involving opioid use can be appropriate across all levels of care. Pharmacotherapy is not a “level of care” in addiction treatment but one component of multidisciplinary treatment.

While medication as a stand-alone intervention has been utilized in North America and internationally, evidence supports and recommends that the use of medications in the treatment of addiction be part of a broad biopsychosocial intervention appropriate to the patient’s needs and to the resources available in the patient’s community.

Addiction should be considered a biopsychosocial co-occurring disorder, for which the use of medication(s) is but only one component of overall treatment.

A BIOPSYCHOSOCIAL ASSESSMENT TEMPLATE:
http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/sapc/NetworkProviders/ClinicalForms/TS/AssessmentToolAdultsPaperVersion.pdf

The following is an extract from the ASAM Strategic Plan and provides guiding principles:

• Positive changes are seen as starting points for the recovery process: reduced harm, safer use, reduced use, moderation and potential abstinence.

• A comprehensive initial assessment will determine an initial personalized treatment plan based on substance use severity, the psychobiosocial factors, multiple meanings and functions of the behaviour, motivation to change, and insight.

• Effective treatment has a primary focus on engagement and therapeutic alliance throughout the assessment process that “starts where the person is” with compassion, respect and acceptance, because creating safety and support are seen as essential to the therapeutic outcomes.

• Teaching self-management skills to address urges and difficult emotions is often essential. An ongoing assessment throughout treatment deepens both client and therapist awareness of the addiction severity and its meaning and functions.

• Exploring the client’s resistance to change reveals the issues that need new solutions. As these issues are clarified, positive change goals around the substance use and these issues can be established.

And, finally, a person centred plan for pursuing these positive changes can be developed collaboratively between client and therapist. The plan may include a variety of therapeutic modalities, lifestyle changes, health practices and medications depending on the client’s needs.

I believe that appropriately trained medical staff, supported by trained volunteers with lived experience in personal recovery, can save lives, stabilise chronic to acute stages of addiction and negative prejudices which are common when dealing with these patients.

These efforts, in turn, can save lives, reduce the financial burden of treating addiction to the health care system and support the interdisciplinary addiction medicine team.

RESEARCH AND EVALUATION
These specialised in addiction medicine clinics will conducts high quality research that can broadens and deepen the understanding of addiction treatment and care delivery.

Principles of Effective Treatment

  1. Addiction is a complex but treatable disease that affects brain function and behaviour. Drugs of abuse alter the brain’s structure and function, resulting in changes that persist long after drug use has ceased.
  2. No single treatment is appropriate for everyone. Treatment varies depending on the type of drug and the characteristics of the patients. Matching treatment settings, interventions, and services to an individual’s particular problems and needs is critical to his or her ultimate success in returning to productive functioning in the family, workplace, and society.
  3. Treatment needs to be readily available. Because drug-addicted individuals may be uncertain about entering treatment, taking advantage of available services the moment people are ready for treatment is critical. Potential patients can be lost if treatment is not immediately available or readily accessible.
  4. Effective treatment attends to multiple needs of the individual, not just his or her drug abuse. To be effective, treatment must address the individual’s drug abuse and any associated medical, psychological, social, vocational, and legal problems. It is also important that treatment be appropriate to the individual’s age, gender, ethnicity, and culture.
  5. Remaining in treatment for an adequate period of time is critical. The appropriate duration for an individual depends on the type and degree of the patient’s problems and needs.
  6. Behavioural therapies—including individual, family, or group counselling—are the most commonly used forms of drug abuse treatment. Behavioural therapies vary in their focus and may involve addressing a patient’s motivation to change, providing incentives for abstinence, building skills to resist drug use, replacing drug-using activities with constructive and rewarding activities, improving problem-solving skills, and facilitating better interpersonal relationships.
  7. Medications are an important element of treatment for many patients, especially when combined with counselling and other behavioural therapies. For example, methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone (including a new long-acting formulation) are effective in helping individuals addicted to heroin or other opioids stabilize their lives and reduce their illicit drug use.
  8. An individual’s treatment and services plan must be assessed continually and modified as necessary to ensure that it meets his or her changing needs. A patient may require varying combinations of services and treatment components during the course of treatment and recovery.
  9. Many individuals have co-occurring disorders with other mental illnesses, treatment should address both (and all), including the use of medications as appropriate.
  10. Medically assisted detoxification is only the first stage of addiction treatment and by itself does little to change long-term drug abuse. Although medically assisted detoxification can safely manage the acute physical symptoms of withdrawal and can, for some, pave the way for effective long-term addiction treatment, detoxification alone is rarely sufficient to help addicted individuals achieve long-term abstinence.
  11. Treatment does not need to be voluntary to be effective. Sanctions or enticements from family, employment settings, and/or the criminal justice system can significantly increase treatment entry, retention rates, and the ultimate success of drug treatment interventions.
  12. Drug use during treatment must be monitored continuously, as lapses during treatment do occur. Knowing their drug use is being monitored can be a powerful incentive for patients and can help them withstand urges to use drugs. Monitoring also provides an early indication of a return to drug use, signalling a possible need to adjust an individual’s treatment plan to better meet his or her needs.
  13. Treatment programs should test patients for the presence of HIV/AIDS, hepatitis B and C, tuberculosis, and other infectious diseases as well as provide targeted risk-reduction counselling, linking patients to treatment if necessary. Typically, drug abuse treatment addresses some of the drug-related behaviours that put people at risk of infectious diseases. Targeted counselling focused on reducing infectious disease risk can help patients further reduce or avoid substance-related and other high-risk behaviours.
  14. Moreover, engaging in substance abuse treatment can facilitate adherence to other medical treatments. Substance abuse treatment facilities should provide onsite, rapid HIV testing rather than referrals to offsite testing—research shows that doing so increases the likelihood that patients will be tested and receive their test results. Highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) has proven effective in combating HIV, including among drug-abusing populations, and help link them to HIV treatment if they test positive.

If nothing changes, nothing changes

STRENGTHS BASED SKILLS SET.

Elizabeth Hearn, HP/NCH. SMAPPH
ELIZABETHHEARN.COM
+447894084788

Who is your enemy? Mind is your enemy. No one can harm you more than a mind untrained. Who is your friend? Mind is your friend. Nothing can help you more that a trained mind, not even your loving parents. —Buddha

In recovery I have come to understand that forcing an outcome, only encounters resistance, disappointment and often suffering.


It often feels like I am pushing to no avail. When I surrender, I am letting go of the need to control an outcome…everybody and everything around me.

The need for control comes from fear; the fear of an inability to handle what I am are not ready or prepared for. There is a natural rhythm in the flow of life, and when I find it, life happens effortlessly…


Only then I fully understand the potency of projection my reality onto others…is the absence trusting in a power greater than ourselves.

SELF COMPASSION & CARE

Most of us still need to learn how to take care of our physical body. We need to learn how to relax and how to sleep. We need to learn how to eat and consume in such a way that our body can be healthy, light, and at ease. If we listen carefully, we can hear our body telling us all the time what it does and does not need.

Although its voice is very clear, we seem to have lost our capacity to listen to it. We’ve pushed our body too hard, and so tension and pain have accumulated. We’ve been neglecting our body so long, it may be lonely.

Our body has wisdom, and we need to give ourselves a chance to hear it.
In this very moment you may like to pause and reconnect with your body. Simply bring your awareness to your breathing, and recognize and acknowledge the presence of your whole body. You may like to say to yourself, “My dear body, I know you are there.” Coming home to your body like this allows some of the tension to be gently released. This is an act of reconciliation. It is an act of love.

  • Thich Nhat Hanh, in “The Art of Living”.

COMPASSION: CONSCIOUSLY LIVING CONSCIOUSLY

Eckhart Tolle:
“If your mind carries a heavy burden of the past, you will experience more of the same.The past perpetuates itself through lack of prescence.

The quality of your consciousness at this moment is what shapes the future.”

The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment

CONSCIOUS CONNECTION

COMPASSION. CONNECTION. COMMUNITY

‘The greatest damage done by neglect, trauma or emotional loss is not the immediate pain they inflict but the long-term distortions they induce in the way a developing child will continue to interpret the world and her situation in it.


All too often these ill-conditioned implicit beliefs become self-fulfilling prophecies in our lives. We create meanings from our unconscious interpretation of early events, and then we forge our present experiences from the meaning we’ve created.

Unwittingly, we write the story of our future from narratives based on the past…

Mindful awareness can bring into consciousness those hidden, past-based perspectives so that they no longer frame our worldview.

Choice begins the moment you dis-identify from the mind and its conditioned patterns, the moment you become present…

Until you reach that point, you are unconscious.’ …In present awareness we are liberated from the past.”

― Gabor Maté