The Best Way to Resolve Trauma: Get Help at a PTSD Treatment Center in Los Angeles

What is the best way to resolve trauma

While many may think that surviving a trauma ends when the trauma itself has ended, you know the reality. Trauma doesn’t end the moment the event ends. Instead, your surviving trauma may be a lifelong endeavor. Whether you have survived war, abuse, a natural disaster, or other trauma, you know that the trauma stays with you. You also understand that it can rise to the surface at the most unexpected times and leave you feeling as if you are reliving the events over and over again. 

Getting help at a PTSD treatment center in Los Angeles can help you begin to see some light at the end of the tunnel. Without professional help, you can start to feel as if the walls are closing in on you, and you will find yourself seeking all sorts of ways to self-medicate.  At The Last House, we understand the lasting effects of trauma and why you will try to escape them. We are here to help you learn more about treating and living with PTSD. 

What Is PTSD?

PTSD, or post-traumatic stress disorder, develops in some individuals who have experienced shocking, frightening, or dangerous events. Some examples of events that result in PTSD include:

  • Childhood trauma, 
  • Seeing a dead body
  • Being injured
  • Living through and/or fighting in a war
  • Losing a loved one unexpectedly
  • Witnessing another person being killed or hurt
  • Experiencing horror, helplessness, or extreme fear
  • Being the victim of a violent crime
  • Surviving a natural disaster such as a hurricane, tornado, or flood

While many people will experience short-term PTSD symptoms, some will develop chronic PTSD. Treating PTSD early on at a PTSD treatment center in Los Angeles can help manage the symptoms better and provide you with coping strategies. It’s important to note that PTSD does not always occur immediately after the events and can arise months or years after the events. 

Common Symptoms of PTSD

When most people think of PTSD, they think of how it is portrayed on television or in the movies. We think of the Veteran who has returned from war who experiences flashbacks. And while flashbacks can be a part of PTSD, they are not the only symptom. Flashbacks and bad dreams are considered re-experiencing symptoms because the individual is reliving the trauma. However, PTSD symptoms can also include avoidance, cognition/mood, and arousal/reactivity symptoms. Avoidance symptoms include avoiding seeing or talking about places, events, or things that remind you of the trauma. Cognition or mood symptoms show up as not remembering particular details or facts about the traumatic event, distorted feelings, or even loss of interest in activities. Arousal/reactivity symptoms include being easily startled, feeling “on edge,” experiencing difficulty sleeping, and having outbursts of anger.  A doctor is the only one who can diagnose PTSD, but if you are experiencing symptoms like these, it’s time to see help at a PTSD treatment center in Los Angeles. Many who experience PTSD will self-medicate with drugs or alcohol to avoid the feelings created by their PTSD symptoms. While this is understandable, self-medicating will not address the underlying issues. In the end, you may find yourself with PTSD and a substance abuse problem. 

Why You Should Go to a PTSD Treatment Center in Los Angeles 

Seeking treatment for your PTSD will enable you to manage your PTSD symptoms in a way that lets you create a life outside of the trauma. The Last House is a network of structured sober living homes in the heart of West Los Angeles. We believe in providing our clients with the tools to have a meaningful life and participate in their sobriety.  Activities such as service commitments, sober parties, conventions, dances, and house outings are all a part of helping you learn how to have fun in sobriety.  Composed of active members of the Los Angeles Sober Living community, our staff is familiar with many recovery support groups in the area.  If you’re wondering how to create your sober life, The Last House is here to help. 

Are There Los Angeles Mental Health Treatment Facilities That Help With Depression?

Are there Los Angeles mental health treatment facilities that help with depression?

More than ever, we can all understand what it feels like to feel sad when we are under stress from circumstances in our life or the world around us. But it can be hard to know when feeling down crosses the lines over into depression. Figuring out if you are battling clinical depression can be confusing, and a Los Angeles mental health treatment facility can help you sort through your symptoms. By working with a professional, you’ll receive an objective opinion and, if needed, begin to develop a treatment plan. More often than not, we spend time researching symptoms on the internet and try to diagnose ourselves. If you ever feel like you’re struggling please reach out to a mental health professional.

 At The Last House, we understand how difficult it can be to navigate depression and its treatment. We are here to help you learn more about your mental health and any treatment you might need. 

What Is Depression?

Depression is more than a feeling of sadness, although that can be a part of it. Depression is a mental health disorder defined by loss of interest in previously enjoyed activities, a depressed mood, and an inability to carry out daily life activities. Depression is sometimes referred to as a major depressive disorder or as clinical depression. While it can be associated with significant life events such as losing a loved one, this is not always the case. Depression may be brought on by other conditions such as pregnancy, childbirth, or psychosis. In other cases, depression may arise without a precipitating event or factor. Only a licensed medical professional can diagnose depression.

Common Symptoms of Depression to Watch Out For

While sadness is what we think of most when we talk about depression, there are many other symptoms. If you are suffering from depression, you will experience a wide range of symptoms, including anxiety, loss of interest in activities, inability to concentrate, extreme sleepiness, insomnia, apathy, hunger, or lack of appetite. As you assess your depression, think about how long you have been experiencing symptoms and how these symptoms are affecting your life. If you recently experienced the loss of a loved one, a home, or a job, you may have a few weeks of feeling down. However, if the feelings of sadness continue beyond two to three weeks and are accompanied by other symptoms, it might be time to talk to a professional. While some who experience depression also have thoughts of suicide, this is not true of everyone who has depression. 

It’s important to note that depression presents differently in different people; not everyone will have the same symptoms.  While women typically present with feelings of sadness, worthlessness, and guilt, men may exhibit fatigue, irritability, and anger. Older adults may be less likely to admit to their symptoms. Teens may act out and get into trouble. All those affected by depression are at risk of using drugs or alcohol as a way to cope with their symptoms. It is pretty common for those dealing with mental health issues to self-medicate.  

Get Help With Depression at a Los Angeles Mental Health Treatment Facility

The Last House is a network of structured sober living homes in the heart of West Los Angeles. We believe in providing our clients with the tools to have a meaningful life and participate in their sobriety.  Activities such as service commitments, sober parties, conventions, dances, and house outings are all a part of helping you learn how to have fun in sobriety.  Composed of active members of the Los Angeles Sober Living community, our staff is familiar with many recovery support groups in the area.  If you’re wondering how to create your sober life, The Last House is here to help. 

Stimulant Drug Examples: What Do They Look Like?

What do drug stimulants look like?

Not all drugs are the same. Drugs are categorized into different classes, including narcotics, depressants, hallucinogens, and stimulants. Each drug class is made up of various drugs and has different effects. Depressants include benzodiazepines and alcohol and, as the name indicates, depress you mentally and physically when you take them. Hallucinogens include drugs like LSD and PCP, resulting in hallucinations. Stimulant drug examples include methamphetamines, amphetamines, and cocaine. Some stimulants are legal and prescribed, while others are not. As the name suggests, stimulants stimulate you mentally and physically. At

The Last House, we know all about the various drugs that can be taken, their effects, and the resulting withdrawals. 

Stimulant Drug Examples

Stimulants speed up the body and the mind. Someone who has taken stimulants will often talk much faster and appear to be moving much more quickly. Some stimulants such as amphetamines and certain methamphetamines can be legally prescribed. Prescribed stimulant drugs examples include Adderall, Ritalin, Didrex, and Meridia. Illegal stimulant drug examples include crystal methamphetamine, cocaine, and synthetic cathinones such as bath salts. While all stimulants act to speed up the body’s systems, the different stimulants can look different. 

Cocaine, only available illegally, will usually appear as a white powder. However, crack cocaine looks like small white rocks. Cocaine has many street names, including coke, crack, crank, flake, snow, and soda. It can be snorted, smoked, or dissolved in water and injected. Most who use cocaine experience a rush of euphoria and will binge on the drug until they run out. Following a cocaine binge, users will typically crash, sleeping for several days until they begin to experience cravings again. Cocaine, in any amount, is very dangerous. Cocaine use can result in irregular heart rhythms, increased blood pressure, increased heart rate, restlessness, irritability, anxiety, stroke, cardiac arrest, and death. 

In its legal form, methamphetamine is prescribed in pill form as Desoxyn to treat ADHD and obesity. In its illegal form, methamphetamines can be taken as a pill or may come as a powder. Created by mixing the prescription drug with over-the-counter drugs, crystal meth is another illegal form of methamphetamine that resembles glass fragments. Methamphetamines and amphetamines can be swallowed, snorted, smoked, or infected. These drugs are highly addictive and have many street names, including speed, ice, tweak, trash, and chalk.  

Like most stimulants, methamphetamines cause increased heart rate, blood pressure, body temperature, and breathing rate, as well as agitation, anxiety, and paranoia. Because of their highly addictive nature, many individuals began taking more of the drug to achieve the same high, resulting in convulsions, cardiac arrest, stroke, or death. 

In addition to methamphetamines, amphetamines, and cocaine, there are also designer drugs designed to simulate stimulants. Designer drug stimulant examples include bath salts and khat. Bath salts, which look much like bath salts or crystal meth, mimic the effects of crystal meth. Khat, a stimulant drug made from leaves and twigs, has cathine and cathinone as its active ingredients and can be drunk as a tea, sprinkled on food, or smoked. Also known as oat, qat, African salad, or catha, khat has similar effects to other stimulants. In addition to the expected results of stimulants, it can also result in manic behavior with grandiose delusions, cardiac complications, nightmares, depression, suicidal ideation, and gastric disorders. Designer drug stimulants are often sold online or in smoke shops, which results in people believing that they are less dangerous, but this is incorrect. 

How to Get Help With a Stimulant Addiction

If you or a loved one have been using drugs, you’ll find many options available for the road to recovery. The Last House is here to help keep them on that road. We are a network of sober living homes in the heart of West Los Angeles. We believe in providing our clients with the tools to have a meaningful life and participate in their sobriety.  Activities such as service commitments, sober parties, conventions, dances, and house outings are all a part of helping you learn how to have fun in sobriety.  If you’re creating a sober life or supporting someone who is, The Last House is here to help. Contact us today. 

Types of Support Groups for Those Affected by Someone’s Addiction

Types of support groups for those affected by someone’s addiction

Loving someone who suffers from addiction is a heartbreaking and isolating proposition. Whether it is a partner, child, spouse, family member, or friend, you will likely feel frustrated and even alone. While others are bragging about a loved one’s accomplishments, you may sit silently struggling with what to do next. Rather than remaining isolated, you might explore the different types of support groups available to those impacted by someone else’s addiction. Hearing the experiences of others who are similarly situated and speaking openly about your own can lessen the feelings of isolation. Additionally, you may hear solutions that help you as you face up to a loved one’s addiction. At The Last House, we understand how confusing and isolating it can be to love someone struggling with addiction. We can help you navigate the types of support groups so that you can support yourself and your loved one during this time.  

Al-Anon and Alateen

Founded in 1951 by Lois W., the wife of the founder of Alcoholics Anonymous, Al-Anon provides support to the friends and families of alcoholics. While it was initially founded to support those who loved an alcoholic, all those who love someone facing addiction are welcome. Like Alcoholics Anonymous, Al-Anon relies on its own set of twelve steps and the option for members to work with a sponsor. Al-Anon is a peer support group; everyone in attendance has been impacted by a family member or loved one facing active alcoholism or active addiction. Meetings are held all over the world, in-person and online. Also available is Alateen, founded in 1957 to support teens affected by someone’s alcoholism or addiction. Neither group is focused on helping anyone with their alcohol or drug problem. Instead, it is solely focused on helping those affected by someone else’s drug and alcohol use. 

Adult Children of Alcoholics

Adult Children of Alcoholics/Dysfunctional Families (ACA) is aimed at men and women who grew up in dysfunctional homes.  ACA is a twelve-step program that also incorporated “The Laundry List,” a list of traits found in adult children. Much like Al-Anon and Alateen, ACA is a peer support group that relies on twelve steps, twelve traditions, and a sponsorship system. ACA is a peer support recovery group that originated within Al-Anon but focuses more on the effects of being raised in an alcoholic or dysfunctional household. ACA uses a Big Red Book rather than the Big Blue Book of Alcoholics Anonymous. 

Families Anonymous

Families Anonymous, while not associated with AA, Al-Anon, or ACA, is another twelve-step program available to those who love someone struggling with addiction. Founded in 1971 in California, Families Anonymous is for those relatives and friends who suffer from a substance abuse or related behavioral problem. Families Anonymous relies on twelve steps, twelve traditions, and meetings to assist those who love someone with a substance or behavioral problem. 

Supporting Someone in Addiction and Addiction Recovery

If you discover that someone you love has been using drugs or alcohol, you’ll find a world of options available to get them on the road to recover. The Last House is here to help keep them on that road. We are a network of sober living homes in the heart of West Los Angeles. We believe in providing our clients with the tools to have a meaningful life and participate in their sobriety.  Activities such as service commitments, sober parties, conventions, dances, and house outings are all a part of helping you learn how to have fun in sobriety.  If you’re helping your teen create a sober life, The Last House is here to help. Contact us today. 

How to Heal From Codependency and Repair Relationships

How to heal from codependency and repair relationships

Relationships are complex enough without the added complications of addiction and codependency. Loving a person who is fighting an active addiction is heartbreaking and exhausting. You may find yourself having an entire spectrum of emotions as the person you love  fights their addiction. You may feel like you are on the most extended road trip with multiple forks in the road but no map to guide you. Relationships with addiction are a breeding ground for unhealthy behaviors like codependency. Once the person you love finds their way to recovery, you’ll be left wondering how to heal from the codependency. At The Last House, we understand the strained relationships associated with addiction, and we can help your family heal the wounds created during active addiction.

How to Heal From Codependency as the Parent

As the parent of an addict, your child’s addiction may have taken over your life. Trying to save a loved one from active addiction can be all-consuming, especially your child. You want to protect your children from harm. Additionally, you’ve probably spent a lot of energy and effort trying to help them avoid the consequences of their addiction in an attempt to preserve their future. Finally, you likely have some level of resentment related to any manipulation that occurred during your child’s active addiction. One of the most important things to realize is that your child has responsibility for healing their addiction; it is not your role to save them. Any addict, no matter the age, must want to recover for any help received to be effective. Still, it’s hard to know where the boundaries are or how to create them.  Fortunately, you will find that you are not alone.  Peer support groups such as Al-Anon will provide you with the space and the tools to heal from codependency. Likewise, family and individual therapy will help you in your journey of healing. 

How to Heal From Codependency as the Recovering Addict

Nearly every person in recovery can look back at their active addiction and realize the number of times they manipulated, used, or lied to their loved ones. When you are active in your addiction, your focus is on using, and everything else becomes superfluous. Sadly, this only gets worse as you get deeper into your addiction, and you may not even remember all of the specifics of what you have done. Part of the recovery journey is to heal the relationships in your life. Sometimes this is done by creating healthier relationships, and sometimes this is done by ending relationships.  Working with a therapist and attending peer support recovery groups can help you to determine what steps are needed in your life. One of the basic tenets of recovery is to keep your side of the street clean, which simply means that you can only be responsible for your own behavior. Understanding this is critical for you to heal from codependency. If your parents have been rescuing you, saving you from consequences, and bearing the brunt of your addictive behavior, you have an opportunity in recovery to change those patterns. Being in recovery is about taking personal responsibility for your actions and your emotions. 

Sober Living at The Last House

The Last House Sober Living is a network of structured sober living homes in southern California. We believe in providing our clients with the tools to have a meaningful life filled with healthier relationships.  We’ll help you learn how to live and have fun in sobriety through service commitments, sober parties, conventions, dances, and house outings.  Our experienced staff is composed of active members of the Los Angeles Sober Living community. If you’re wondering where to start to create your sober life, The Last House is here to help. 

What Does It Mean to Relapse? Signs to Look Out for In Your Loved One

Drug and Alcohol addiction relapse rehabilitation treatment program

It is heartbreaking to watch someone you love struggle with active addiction. It’s also hard to know how to best support them through early sobriety and long-term recovery.  When your loved one is in early sobriety, you will hear a lot of talk about relapse and relapse prevention. But what does it mean to relapse? Relapsing involves picking back up drugs, alcohol, or both after having gotten sober. Relapse can happen at any time in sobriety, and that’s why relapse prevention is critical. The Last House is here to help with relapse prevention and support your loved one as they create their sober life.

What Is a Relapse?

While relapse occurs when someone starts using drugs or alcohol again, most will admit that the relapse began in their minds long before the use began. So what is a relapse? Is it the taking of any substance or just the drug of choice? The answer is it depends. There are those within the recovery community that adheres to a rigid set of standards for sobriety. The ones in this camp believe that the taking of any mind-altering substance equals relapse. Others believe that avoiding the drug of choice while taking other substances is acceptable. Finally, some strike a balance and feel that substances prescribed by a doctor do not constitute a relapse if the medication is taken exactly as prescribed. 

What defines a relapse is personal. What’s more important to know is that relapses, when they happen, are not a reason for shame and do not have to last long. While relapsing can be dangerous depending on the drug used, it can also be educational. Relapsing does not eliminate the work that has been done in sobriety. Instead, a relapse should be examined for the lessons that can be used going forward. 

Who Is Vulnerable to Relapse?

To some extent, everyone who is in recovery is vulnerable to relapse. Addiction is not a disease that vanishes. While it often gets easier over time, long-term sobriety still requires work. To reduce the risk of relapse in early sobriety, some basics help, including: 

  • Making choices that support physical and emotional well-being
  • Having a stable and safe place to live
  • Engaging in meaningful daily activities
  • Building supportive relationships and social networks

Those in sobriety must also learn to identify and recognize their triggers. Developing a plan to address triggers, stress, and other life events is critical to long-term sobriety. 

Relapse Warning Signs to Look Out for in My Loved One

It can be challenging to recognize a relapse, especially in early recovery. Many in early recovery are more emotional and moody simply because they are not using. It is not uncommon for those in early recovery to have some bouts of anger or to cry during the first several months.  Recovery is not linear, and each month will bring new challenges to face. However, the signs of relapse will often be similar to the signs that your loved one was using in the first place. Moodiness may be expected, but slurred words, pinpoint pupils, and marked personality changes are not. As with many things, you have to keep the lines of communication open and trust your gut. 

Live Sober With the Help of The Last House

The Last House Sober Living is a network of sober living homes in the heart of West Los Angeles. We believe in providing our clients with the tools to have a meaningful life, participate in their sobriety, and avoid relapse.  Activities such as service commitments, sober parties, conventions, dances, and house outings are all a part of helping you learn how to have fun in sobriety.  If you’re wondering where to start to create your sober life, The Last House is here to help.