Take your life back from substance abuse

Freedom of a WomanGabor Mate, author of “When the Body Says No”, and “In the Realm of the Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters with Addiction”, encourages a treatment-informed perspective on substance abuse.

He states:

“Don’t ask “Why the addiction?”, ask “Why the pain?””.

There are many different reasons why substance abuse gains control of people’s lives. Most often substance abuse is a form of self medication that alleviates the pain of:

  • A family history of addiction
  • Abuse, neglect, or childhood trauma
  • Mental health issues such as anxiety and depression
  • Feeling that your life is void of meaning, purpose, and the emotional/spiritual sustenance that nourishes a healthy sense of self

Early exposure, and the frequency and method of administration can increase the impact of substance use on the brain.

Repeated substance use alters brain chemistry by interfering with neurotransmitters, such as dopamine, seratonin, and others. Once neural pathways are formed by repeated substance use, it is very difficult to distinguish the drug from other survival behaviours, such as eating and drinking.

Substance use wreaks havoc on people’s lives.

When substance use:

  • Sabotages your ability to meet professional and familial responsibilities
  • Compels you to take dangerous risks for the sake of using
  • Gets you into legal and financial trouble
  • Destroys relationships with the people that care about you

Counselling is an important step in reclaiming your life

In our work together, you will:

  • Receive non-judgemental, supportive, evidence-based treatment
  • Understand how the substance that has held you captive has impacted your brain chemistry
  • Gain an understanding of the people, situations, and experiences that make you vulnerable to relapse
  • Explore beliefs that fuel substance use, and reclaim your strengths, skills, and abilities
  • Develop confidence to make the necessary changes
  • Uncover creative, spiritual, intellectual, and somatic resources that expand your sense of safety, and readiness to process old wounds that may underlie substance abuse
  • Learn how to use mindfulness to alleviate stress, and transform distressing patterns such as emotional reactivity, mood swings, irritability, and angry outbursts
  • Deepen loving kindness and self compassion