When an individual is legally encouraged by their attorney for a recent DUI, or mandated through a drug court as a condition of pretrial release, probation, or parole to participate in substance abuse treatment this may be “a blessing in disguise.” Those who are court involved tend to remain in treatment for a longer period of time which is usually preferred by the courts. As a result, more criminally involved clients overall have lower relapse rates, reduction of criminal activities and less recidivism.

Women are the fastest growing segment of the population who abuse substances, according to several research studies that have been done recently. Although more women than ever are suffering from substance abuse disorders, there still is a small number of women who actually are receiving treatment for their addiction.

Substance abuse in women is often harder to detect than in men, and can easily be overlooked by friends, family members and health care providers.  For women, a fair amount of drinking is often done at home, during hours of the day when significant others and/or children are not at home. They are also less likely to have consequences such as a DUI because they are drinking at home. Three-martini playdates are often thought of as a fun way for stay-at-home mothers to blow off the steam of being with the kids all day and as a way to bond with other moms.

Further, many women turn to alcohol and drugs in order to be able to "do it all".  Use of stimulants can help a woman raise 3 kids, do well at a high powered job, keep up the household and still have energy for the gym on a regular basis.  On top of all of this, according to the research, women are more likely than men to see health care providers on a regular basis, thus increasing their access to prescription drugs with abuse potential.  Similarly, women are just as likely as men to drink or use drugs to medicate depression and anxiety, but are more likely than men to present to a mental health provider for help, resulting in more prescriptions for benzodiazepines and sleeping aids.

Substance abuse in women is often overlooked because the abuse itself is often normalized, seen as a response to today's pressures on women.  Often women recognize the fact that they are depressed or anxious and will go to treatment for the mood condition, unaware that substance abuse needs to be addressed as well.  If and when the need for substance abuse treatment is recognized, there are often gender specific barriers to women accessing and staying in treatment.  Some of the more common and problematic barriers are:

Fear- Women with children face the very real fear of being separated from or losing primary custody of their children.  In addition, image management, while also a factor for men, can deter a woman from entering treatment due to fears about what it will look like and what others will think about her.  Women also tend to have more fears about paying for treatment as compared to men, as many women do not earn as much as men, are underemployed or unemployed.

Childcare- It is well documented in the literature that women have a harder time accessing treatment if they are the primary caregivers of young children.  Treatment initiation and retention rates are much higher for women when there is some assistance with childcare and/or when the children are allowed to stay with the mother while she is in treatment.  For many women, paying for treatment along with childcare is too much of a financial burden.

History of Trauma-  For women with a history of physical and sexual trauma, entering mixed gender treatment is often a deterrent.  Programs that offer gender specific therapy groups and therapists equipped to handle trauma increase the success of a woman entering, staying in, and ultimately being successful in addiction treatment.

Psychological/Cultural- As stated above, women often view their own substance abuse as temporary, a crutch to help deal with the pressures of working, caring for children, caring for aging parents, running a household.  Though women are more likely than men to admit to needing help, they are less likely to actually go to treatment to get the help they need. Women also suffer from shame factors that are different from men's, and admit to higher levels of suicidal ideation and low self worth directly related to substance abuse and dependence.

The more that women's issues are well understood and addressed in treatment settings, the more successful a woman can be at obtaining help and achieving long term sobriety.  Addressing each woman's specific history thoroughly in an intake procedure can ensure that the right setting is available (i.e gender specific group for a woman with a lot of male perpetrated trauma vs. a mixed gender group for a woman needing to strengthen her platonic relationships with men).  It is also important for treatment providers to continue to address these needs along the course of treatment, as they may change, and for providers and treatment centers be sensitive to the needs of each woman individually, rather than generally as women.

New Hope Recovery Center offers gender specific programming. If you are concerned about yourself or a loved one, it is important to call and go in for an assessment with a professional.  All assessments at New Hope Recovery Center are confidential with no obligation for further treatment. Recovery is possible, let us help. Call us at 888-707-4673 or Email us at info@new-hope-recovery.com.

Written by: New Hope Recovery Center

Want more information about treatment for specific populations? Check out our Journal for related articles or see below:

Lesbians Seeking Drug and Alcohol Treatment Alcohol and drug abuse is a major concern for individuals who identify as lesbian. A reportpublished by SAMHSA in 2011 found people who identify as LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) are significantly more likely than the general population to use and abuse drugs or alcohol. This same study found lesbians are significantly more likely than heterosexual women to drink alcohol heavily.

Drug and Alcohol Addiction Treatment for Latino and Hispanic People There are several things to be aware of when working with the Spanish communities for drug or alcohol addiction.  Cultural identity is one of the most important factors to keep in mind when working with the Spanish community.  For example: Cubans, Dominicans and Puerto Ricans identify themselves as Hispanics; while Central Americans and South Americans identify themselves as Latinos for the most part.

Senior Citizens: Alcohol Abuse and Misuse Seniors citizens and alcohol abuse and misuse is a serious problem. With the rapidly growing senior population, it is more important than ever to stay informed about the potential mental/behavioral health threats seniors are experiencing. People seldom think of alcohol abuse or misuse to be a problem in the senior population and rarely see that they are at risk of this behavior. There are major life changes affecting this population, which leads many seniors to begin abusing or misusing alcohol (and medications), even if they never showed signs of this behavior earlier in life.

Student Drug Abuse Warning Signs Young adults face many temptations and opportunities to use and abuse drugs and alcohol.  As a parent, it is important to allow for appropriate independence and growth for your student or young adult, but also to keep a watchful eye looking for warning signs or symptoms of drug or alcohol use/addiction. Part of growing up involves making mistakes and hopefully learning from them.  These teachable moments allow students and emerging adults to learn how to respond better in the future.

Most decisions to enter treatment for substance abuse are not often made by the individual who needs it; someone or something is forcing the substance abuser to enter treatment.  They enter substance abuse treatment because their spouse or family’s ultimatum, fear of going to jail, losing their job, or deteriorating mental and physical health.

When an individual is legally encouraged by their attorney for a recent DUI, or mandated through a drug court as a condition of pretrial release, probation, or parole to participate in substance abuse treatment this may be “a blessing in disguise.” Those who are court involved tend to remain in treatment for a longer period of time which is usually preferred by the courts. As a result, more criminally involved clients overall have lower relapse rates, reduction of criminal activities and less recidivism. Studies have shown that outcomes for those who are legally motivated and/or pressured to enter treatment have the same or better treatment outcomes than those who entered treatment without any legal pressure.

Court mandated treatment usually involves a completion of all levels of treatment in addition to a strong presence of 12-Step involvement and regular meeting attendance. There are a variety of levels of care available depending on the circumstances of each person.

  • Residential or inpatient treatment
  • Intensive outpatient treatment
  • If available basic outpatient or brief intervention counseling
  • Aftercare/continuing care

Although forced abstinence does not equal recovery it certainly helps when considering the consequences of continual use, relapse, arrest, or incarceration. Those who stay engaged in treatment and/or comply with the court mandate increase their chances of recovering from their addiction and maintaining ongoing abstinence.

Those who are being released from incarceration or have experienced long periods of abstinence in a controlled environment also benefit from entering and engaging in substance abuse treatment. They still need to learn how to avoid relapse pitfalls and acquire coping skills to deal with stressors, feelings and emotions.

Coordinating services between the substance abuse treatment and those who are the court personnel, such as, probation and parole officers need to establish open communication and transparency to ensure client’s accountable, responsible and ownership for violations. Treatment success will depend mainly on the individual’s response to the treatment program structure and compliance to other wraparound services that support total abstinence, life style changes, a shift in attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors to help prevent relapse and promote ongoing recovery.

Measuring the client’s treatment progress and compliance will need to be closely monitored. One of the most effective ways to measure progress and monitor compliance is to combine the substance abuse treatment, the criminal justice system and any other services involved. Treatment and court appointed personnel will need to work together by sharing drug screening monitoring and testing results, treatment plans and objectives as well as utilizing and implementing therapeutic and efficient use of sanctions. Treatment for those who are court involved must include continuing care and close monitoring to ensure success.

Some of the risk factors for court involved clients include family members who continue to enable their loved ones or continually taking responsibility and/or accountability for their actions. Another is the criminal lifestyle or addicted life style. There is a saying in recovery “if the drugs don’t kill you, the lifestyle will.” The individual’s lack of coping skills, work experience, people, places, and things, and the fact we do recover from drugs and alcohol but not criminal records bring on its own unique challenges.

Emphasizing structure, self-discipline, building self-confidence and a healthy sense of belonging with a support system is most certainly needed to ensure continuous success. Securing a safe environment is an important for long lasting recovery, and there are a variety of housing options:

  1. transitional housing
  2. recovery homes
  3. halfway houses
  4. three quarter houses

The need to comply with treatment expectations and court mandated conditions can be a powerful deterrent from continuing use of any substance, but a continuum care may need to be extended over a longer period of time and across several layers of services to be successful. New Hope Recovery Center provides a large continuum of care in order to provide our clients with a variety of treatment levels. Contact us today if you or a loved one suffers from chronic alcoholism or drug addiction. There is help and there is hope!

Written by: New Hope Recovery Center

DUI Education FactsInformation collected by Abbey Haroldson Director of Finance & Administration at New Hope Recovery Center

Driving Under the Influence (DUI) is a serious crime.  Although awareness about DUI’s are becoming more prevalent, DUI’s are still occurring at a high rates.  The most recent data available from the Illinois Secretary of State is through 2011 and is as follows:

7 Interesting Facts related to DUI

  1. Males ages 21-24 have the highest DUI arrest rate (almost 5 times greater than that of all other drivers arrested for DUI.)
  2. Average Cost of a DUI conviction: $16,580 – (this does not include potential medical costs or compensatory damages costs)
  3. Nurses & Physicians are required and protected by law to provide blood/urine tests results to law enforcement if a person seeks emergency medical treatment as a result of a motor vehicle crash
  4. In 1958 the .15 BAC limit was established.  In 1967 the BAC limit lowered from .15 to .10 (The BAC was not lowered to .08 until 30 years later, which is the limit in place today).
  5. 85% of all drivers arrested for DUI are first offenders
  6. First time DUI offenders are required to have a Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device installed in his/her vehicle in Illinois and 31 other states in the US.
  7. If a person is caught driving their car with a suspended license – they will have to forfeit their car to the state.

Be a Drunkbuster and make $100!

Report Drunk Driving and get $100 statewide in Illinois during the holidays.  If you live in DuPage, Kane, McHenry, Lake or Will Counties, the program runs year long! For more information on the Alliance Against Intoxicated Motorists (AAIM), visit their website: http://www.aaim1.org/drunkbusters.asp!

Amount of DUI Arrests in Illinois:

2008: 48,113

2009: 45,946

2010: 41,900

2011: 38,704

Already been charged with a DUI?

New Hope Recovery Center now offers DUI education for DUI offenders.  Please visit our website for more information or contact us at info@new-hope-recovery.com.

For more information please visit the Illinois Secretary of State’s website: http://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/departments/drivers/traffic_safety/DUI/home.html


costs of addiction drug rehab chicago

Broke because of your addiction?

Put simply – addiction is expensive.  People are familiar with the “upfront” costs of addiction such as the cost of purchasing drugs/alcohol, the social cost of buying drugs/alcohol for friends and the impulsive purchases made while under the influence.  Additionally, there are many hidden costs of addiction that people may not be aware of.  While the actual addiction is expensive, it’s the hidden costs of addiction that will ruin a person’s financial health, their credit score, as well as the ability to find and keep a good job.  The following are the 6 most expensive hidden fees of addiction:

Loss of productivity.  An individual is less productive while under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol. This frequently leads to missing work and poor job performance while at work resulting in a greater chance of unemployment.

Illness/physical deterioration.  While using drugs/alcohol an individual is less likely to exercise and make healthy food choices often resulting in high blood pressure and digestive complications.  Behavioral issues may arise as well, impacting an individual’s physical well being.  The use of alcohol and other drugs may lead to a variety of issues including cancer, dementia, depression, seizures, nerve damage and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) just to name a few.  With poor health come high insurance premiums, expensive hospital bills, and costly medications.

Insurance cost.  If an individual has even one DUI, they will be paying close to 300% more for car insurance.  Health and Life insurance also become much more expensive, that is if an insurance company even qualifies a person for these policies. Want more drunk driving facts? Click here!

Legal bills. Divorce, DUI, arrest warrants, attorney fees, fines, and educational courses are just a few of the costs that someone who struggles with addiction to substances will face. In addition, dealing with the court system is very time consuming, and we all know time = money!

Loss of income.  Someone struggling with alcoholism or drug addiction is going to find it difficult to complete higher education often resulting in a lower average income for a lifetime.  Keep in mind, social security/retirement benefits are based on earned income so the impact is felt years down the road.

Bad credit.  There are always fees associated with late payment of bills.  This can result in higher interest rates on credit cards. Continued late payments will lower credit score.  Bad credit not only makes it difficult/impossible to buy a home but can also hinder the ability to get a good job.

The best way to move forward and get back on track with your financial well-being is to begin dealing with the addiction head on and set a realistic personal budget.  There are many online tools and personal bankers that can help you with this.  Here are a few tips to think about in developing a healthy budget:

  1. Pay bills on time.
  2. Pay down and existing debt.
  3. Create a “cushion” - keep 3 months income in savings in case of an emergency.
  4. Start/continue to put money away in a retirement savings account.
  5. Review your bank accounts frequently – check for errors!
  6. Look for ways to save money – pack lunch a few times per week!
  7. Set goals for yourself – Do you want to pay off a loan in 2 months? Do you want to save a certain amount of cash every pay period?

Keep in mind, no one can turn their financial health around in a month or two – it may take years. The key to success is to stay consistent, make small goals throughout the year and re-evaluate your situation as often as possible. If you are still struggling with an addiction, take the first step and call to get an assessment. Spending money on treatment is an investment and will pay off in the end! To set up an assessment – call 773.883.3916 or email New Hope Recovery Center.

Written By: New Hope Recovery Center