Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Alcohol Facts & Myths

According to recent studies, 61% of the U.S. population has indulged in at least one alcoholic beverage in the past year. Though beer, wine and liquor are commonly consumed, many individuals do not fully comprehend the impact drinking has on the body and society as a whole. In this entry, we will address some common facts and myths associated with alcohol use to shed further light on its effects. 

Social Drinking

Myth: You are not an alcoholic if you only drink with others.
Fact: Though drinking alone is one of the first signs of a drinking problem, social drinking to excess can also signal an addiction to alcohol.


Myth: I drive much better with a few drinks in me.
Fact: Though alcohol can reduce stress and increase relaxation, the overall impact of a few drinks significantly impairs our ability to think, judge and react.


Myth:  Libido is increased by alcohol intake.
Fact: Alcohol works to widen blood vessels in the penis, promoting blood flow both to and from the area – ultimately resulting in erectile dysfunction.


Myth: Drinking black coffee sobers me up.
Fact: Though coffee’s water content will help your body dilute the alcohol, it does not sober you up. Caffeine’s effects may cause a person to believe they are sober enough to drive in spite of the fact that they are still under the influence.


Myth: Alcohol warms up your body when it’s cold.
Fact: Alcohol actually makes our bodies colder. Though a shot of alcohol can certainly offer a warming sensation, the feeling only results from blood rushing to the skin’s surface, causing heat to escape from the body.

Need Help?

If you have a friend or loved one struggling with an alcohol addiction, Family First Intervention is the place to call. Pick up the phone today and let our team of addiction specialists help your loved one back on track towards the healthy, happy life they deserve.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Denial Defined

Throughout substance abuse and chemical dependency treatment, addicts must go through a series of denial phases in order to truly comprehend the problem before moving towards a healthy recovery. In total, there are 3 unique denial stages throughout the recovery process. For some users, it can take months or even years to properly address and defeat the addiction.

Denial Types

Two distinct denial types exist in recovery. The first type is akin to lying, as an addict, when confronted about their dependence, denies any issue while understanding its existence. An individual who is truly unaware of the extent of the issue at hand defines the second.

Phase 1

Denial stage 1 refers to a user who refuses to admit to the addiction. This does not necessarily mean that they will not address the issue; rather, they do not view it as a problem. Other users may acknowledge the use, but refuse to accept that an addiction is present. Overcoming this initial stage can only occur through abstinence and educational means. In order for a recovery to take place, the addict must first accept their addiction as a problem behavior.

Phase 2

Denial stage 2 often surfaces following treatment. In this circumstance, the addict feels they have been “cured”, while refusing to seek additional help from exterior sources. In order to move beyond phase 2, the addict must understand that they are powerless to maintain sobriety on their own.

Phase 3

The final denial stage sees an addict refusing to commit full-heartedly to recovery. Though the addict may vocalize a commitment, they may prove unable to maintain it for a long period of time. Phase 3 is often the shortest in the denial pack – leading either to relapse or increased involvement in the recovery lifestyle.

Need Help?

If a friend or loved one is struggling to come to grips with an addiction to drugs or alcohol, seek out help. Don't wait - tomorrow may never come.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Intervention Roles

An intervention may be necessary to communicate concern to a loved one struggling with addiction. The goal of any intervention is to encourage the addict to seek help in combating these matters. When it comes to staging an intervention, several roles must be filled to ensure s positive outcome for all participants involved.
At the forefront of the alcohol or drug intervention team is an interventionist. This specialist is a licensed professional with extensive training and knowledge in the realm of addiction and recovery. The interventionist works with participants by explaining the process of intervention, while guiding everyone through best practices in confronting the individual in question,
Family and Friends
The role of loved ones during a family intervention is extensive. Participants are encouraged to communicate their concern and love for the addict, while confronting them about their alcohol and/or drug abuse. Additionally, loved ones must explain that they are no longer willing to enable the addiction any further through emotional or financial means. The alternative to this consequence is that the addict seek help through an addiction treatment program.
Ideally, the addict should be respectful to all participants by listening to their concerns and requests. Addicts will commonly deny the presence of an issue and refuse to accept help. If the subject becomes combative, the interventionist and participants must support each other while reaffirming their commitment to a happy and successful outcome.
Tips and Warnings
An intervention can be utilized to address an array of addictions, including but not limited to hoarding, sex, gambling and eating disorders. Securing treatment prior to the intervention is encouraged to avoid a last minute change of heart by the addict.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

How Families Enable Addiction

Drug and alcohol addiction has the ability to ruin family life from the inside out, in addition to a number of social, economic and legal issues. Though the impact on the individual and surrounding family differs with each situation, the problem does not discriminate according to race, class, or gender. In this entry, we will take a close look at some common enabling behaviors.


Any form of drug or alcohol addiction comes with a financial burden. Whether financial troubles stem from an inability to maintain employment or the diminished income due to excessive use, the problem remains the same. If an individual loses their job due to addiction, they may be required to seek financial aid from parents, siblings and friends. Though it is natural for loved ones to wish the addict success, continuing to bail them out will only serve to perpetuate the cycle.

Long story short: An addict without reason to quit using will not stop until they have one.


Some family members may enable addiction by hiding the issue from others within the family circle. A sister who is aware of her brother’s drug addiction but who neglects to inform her parents is enabling the abuse to continue. Choosing to hide or ignore the issue from those who may take action prohibits the issue from obtaining the attention in requires, but does nothing to solve the problem.

Your family member does not need time… They need HELP.


Many types of enabling are complicit or even overt and proactive, but denial is another characteristic of loved ones who enable addiction. By choosing to deny or ignore the issue, family members only fan the flames of addiction. Denial is both a trick and mechanism of the addict and/or codependents, used to divert attention from the issue at hand. 

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Intervention Types

Intervention is a response to a person and situation that require exterior help. Common reasons for intervention include: extreme depression and suicidal tendencies; drug and alcohol abuse; eating disorders; and other serious life issues that pose negative influence on the individual in question. A variety of intervention strategies can be utilized, each of which we will cover in the entry below.

Emergency Intervention

A crisis or emergency intervention takes place when a person poses an immediate threat to themselves of others. This intervention type is typically performed without much planning by friends and family members. Loved ones of the subject understand the immediate danger, confront the person in a loving and time-efficient manner, and transport them to a treatment facility of hospital to begin recovery.

Family Intervention

Family interventions occur in cases where loved ones communicate their concerns to the subject in an honest and open manner. Unlike a crisis intervention, the loved ones plan exactly when, where and how to confront the individual about their behaviors. This confrontation involves communications in a loving and non-judgmental fashion, while making certain to convey a need for treatment.

Teen Intervention

Personality, maturity and age must all be taken into account when considering a teen intervention. These intervention types can prove more delicate than others due to the confrontational and rebellious nature of some adolescents. In many cases, you may consider seeking the aid of an interventionist to assist you throughout the intervention planning and implementation process to help ensure a positive experience. 

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

What Type of Letter to Write For An Alcohol Intervention

Alcoholism, a dependency to alcohol, is an extreme condition. For family and friends of an alcoholic, being forced to stand by and watch the individual spiral can prove quite frustrating. If you’re seeking change in the life of an alcoholic loved one in addition to yourself, an intervention may be the route for you! In this entry, we will discuss the best techniques and strategies when creating an intervention letter.


During alcohol intervention, family and friends create letters in an effort to avoid chaos and excess emotion during the intervention. Without these letters, anger and frustration can quickly become a main focus; creating additional barriers on path to the main goal of the intervention: getting the alcoholic to seek treatment.


Each intervention letter consists of three parts and should not run longer than 2 pages. The introduction of your letter should communicate how much you care for the individual in question.


Your letter’s body should include reasons why the individual should seek help. Cite recent instances where the alcoholic’s behaviors have hindered the life of both the alcoholic and those surrounding them.


Your conclusion should once again affirm your love for the alcoholic, while requesting they accept help for their affliction. A well-written letter is an essential aspect of any successful intervention.


Prior the intervention, all participants should gather to share their letters with one another. This will help ensure fresh content, while serving as an editing platform to remove feelings of hostility, finger pointing and blame. 

What Is Your Intervention Objective?

A family requested drug intervention is a momentous step forward for friends and family seeking to address a loved one’s addiction. But before you can properly use an intervention, it is important to determine precisely what you are hoping to achieve by it.


Your first and main objective of the intervention should be confronting the individual whom the intervention is for in regard to their substance abuse issues. It is vital that the subject is acutely aware of the spot they have place themselves and loved ones into, and important they be made to understand the extent of their issue. Until a subject admits to their behaviors, the intervention cannot proceed.

Relationship Impact

The second intervention objective should be letting the individual know exactly how their addiction and behaviors have impacted the lives of those surrounding them. Having each participant communicate just how their life has been affected by the subject’s addiction will serve in opening the subject’s eyes to the damage inflicted.


Participants should attempt to heal their relationships with the addict. This objective is extremely important, and is recognized as a crucial step in maintaining support for the individual while communicating that their loved ones will be there for them if indeed they choose to seek help for their issues.


Of course, the real objective of any intervention is a happy outcome. Getting the subject to assume responsibility for their problems and agree to treatment is a win-win situation, and a step towards the healthy, happy life they and the family deserve.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Alcohol Intervention Guidelines

Do you have a loved one requiring treatment for alcoholism? If so, an alcohol intervention may be the road to follow. Truth be told, an intervention can be a stressful ordeal. Though you likely have reservations about confronting your loved one, it is important to take action before the issue escalates into greater risk areas.

Location, Location, Location

The proper location is essential to the success of an alcohol intervention. This spot should serve as a neutral zone for both the alcoholic and participants alike. In this way, you can effectively lessen the possibility of your loved one feeling threatened or on-guard. Plan a time when the subject is most likely to be clear headed and sober to ensure they are able to fully understand the extent of the situation at hand.


Before the intervention can begin, it is important to obtain a commitment from the alcoholic that they will listen without interruption while others are speaking. Express your concern without blame or accusation. Stick to the facts and support your claims with recent examples of how the individual’s behaviors have negatively impacted both themselves and those surrounding them.

In most cases, it’s best to write out your feelings ahead of time. It can be easy for emotions to get the best of us in stressful situations. In this way, you can communicate your concern clearly, without frustration, anger and personal attacks.

Offer Answers

After each participant has been afforded the opportunity to communicate his or her concerns, a solution must be offered. Having a treatment plan in place prior to the intervention is imperative to a safe and successful transition into recovery. If your loved one agrees to accept help, your plan must be enacted immediately to avoid delays and second thoughts.

If the individual shows hesitancy towards recovery, an ultimatum should be offered to motivate them in the right direction. Ultimatums can range from revoked financial assistance to cutting off communication completely. Please note that if you are unwilling to carry out the ultimatum, it should not be given. Empty threats will get you nowhere; causing only additional issues moving forward.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Facilitating A Group Intervention

Interventions are generally comprised by a group of family and friends with the intent to aid someone engaged in self-destructive behaviors. Though these encounters are commonly thought to be for individuals struggling with addiction and substance abuse, they can be organized around other behaviors as well.  From hoarding and eating disorders to gambling and mental health issues, interventions are able to help people accept the extent of the issue at hand, and the help being offered to combat it.

1 – Contact friends and family members of the individual for whom the intervention will be based around. This group can include anyone from co-workers to religious figures such as a priest or rabbi. Communicate your ideas surrounding the intervention with those you’d like involved to ensure that all are on board. Discuss your reasoning behind the actions being taken, along with the results you’re hoping to see.

2 – Reach out to an intervention specialist. During the intervention, your loved one may react with anger toward you and the other participants. Involving a neutral party within the circle will help defer aggression and center focus on the real issue at hand. In addition, a trained interventionist can also help organize and moderate the intervention to ensure that everything runs smoothly, and that everyone is on the same page.

3 – Determine terms within the group before the actual intervention. In order to achieve a happy outcome, most interventions will require some form of ultimatum. Enabling the addict through financial aid, shelter, or covering for them will only perpetuate the cycle of addiction and negativity. As such, the addict must understand that they will no longer be provided assistance unless they choose to seek help.

4 – Plan out a place, date and time for the intervention to be held. Ideally, you’ll want to choose a spot that is neutral to both the addict and participants such as a hotel room or friends home.

5 – Participants should each write a letter to the individual describing just how difficult it is to watch them wallow in self-destructive behaviors. Letters should cite specific examples of how the addiction has affected the participant on a personal level and how they hope the addict will seek help for their problems.

6 – Make arrangements for treatment prior to the intervention. Once the individual agrees to treatment, it’s important to enact a plan right away to avoid any second thoughts. Have your treatment facility on call, and travel arrangements ready to go.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Handling Anger From A Drug Addict – A How-To Guide

In some cases, we are not afforded a clear choice in leaving loved ones who are struggling with anger issues caused by abuse and addiction. In this entry we will offer up a few tips to help you cope with your situation.

1 – Avoid taking anything personally. Place yourself in a mindset that focuses on the present rather than allowing harsh statements or aggressive behavior destroy you. Remember to take a deep breath and remain clam. Screaming or placing blame on yourself will only escalate the drama… and you already likely have a surplus.

2 – Create a list of addresses, phone numbers and other contact information of loved ones and friends to assist you should things get out of hand. You never know when you might need them.

3 – Face the facts. The addict is not angry at something you did. They are angry at themselves. The drugs simply add to the aggression. Avoid fooling yourself into believing that time will heal the situation. It won’t. Your home isn’t going to clean itself up without a good fight… neither will an addict. Don’t let the troubles pile up.

4 – Take steps to address potential codependency issues. Though you may not have the ability to drop everything and build a spiritual practice, you can question, “What am I gaining by continuing to enable this predicament?”

5 – Focus on you! Start off slow and envision a life independent of negativity and addiction. Share your thoughts in a diary. Read a book. Do something for YOU. By engaging in activities of self-worth, you will eventually develop it.

6 – Stage a drug intervention. This will provide you with the ability to fight back against your loved one’s addiction, while offering assistance towards a healthy and happy recovery.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Drug Abuse Confrontation Techniques

Watching a loved one struggle with drug addiction is an extremely difficult position to be in. Learning to confront the issue is yet another. Before a discussion can take place, it is important to determine whether the individual in question is aware of the issue at hand. Many addicts have trouble recognizing substance abuse problems; a fact that may ultimately alter the way to address the issue.


1 – Think before you speak. Having an organized plan of action prior to the discussion is key to a positive outcome. Determine which points should be addressed and what wording to use. These confrontations can be emotionally draining as is without having to scrounge about for the right word. Write out your thoughts ahead to time to keep both you and the conversation focused and on track.

2 – Be realistic. Not every confrontation will end on a happy note; there may not be kisses, hugs and thank yous. You may be met will anger, denial, yelling and defiance. Many addicts are simply not ready to face their substance abuse issues. By preparing yourself for the worst, you stand a much better chance of success.

3 – Provide alternatives and solutions. Simply suggesting that someone quit using will do little to change the situation. Have a plan of action ready! Look into local rehab facilities, counselors and support groups to further your cause. If you expect resistance, you may consider organizing a drug intervention to further illustrate the effect their addiction has had on those surrounding them.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Strategies For A Successful Intervention

Choosing the right family intervention strategies can be tricky. What works well in one instance may not necessarily be the proper course of action for another. Interventions exist in a number of forms: Some bluntly express a need for change. Others can be more subtle. Depending on the subject and circumstances, it may be necessary to perform several interventions before getting the intended message across. In this entry, we will discuss some common strategies to employ in hopes of a happy outcome.


People abuse alcohol for a variety of reasons. Some self medicate in an effort to address underlying issues they may not even know exist. An intervention can be subtle, such as a suggestion to seek professional counseling. Even in cases where the individual does not intend to quit drinking, working with a seasoned counselor may help them come to grips with the full extent of their issues.

Stop Enabling

An individual who is unable to maintain steady employment and regularly borrows money from friendly and family members is typically only obtaining help to continue their irresponsible behaviors. If an alcoholic is not provided reasons to alter their ways, the cycle will perpetuate.

Though you may view it as harsh, the absolute best way to aid a struggling addict is by cutting off their lifeline. When loved ones put their foot down in regard to financial support, the addict is forced to look at their situation in a more delicate manner. Chances are that after a week or so without cash flow, they will choose to gain employment or seek professional help.

Restricted Contact

Many alcoholics display behaviors that are simply inappropriate when they are under the influence. They may allow anger to get the best of them; they may curse, yell, or simply become belligerent. If this behavior is regularly displayed in front of children, such as nieces, nephews or grandchildren, it’s important to set boundaries by restricting their contact until help is obtained. This technique is not only beneficial to the individual in question, but the children as well. The idea that they are no longer allowed to communicate with their loved ones may be just enough to consider recovery possibilities.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

The Benefits of Sobriety

Drug and alcohol addiction leads to an array of issues affecting the user’s health, career, relationships and finances, among other things. Breaking the addiction cycle and choosing a sober lifestyle offers the potential for numerous benefits and possibilities that would otherwise remain hidden from view. Though this road can certainly be a challenging one to navigate, the positives await at our destination far outweigh any possible negatives.


Alcohol often brings out negative aspects in its users. Removing alcohol from the equation provides you with the opportunity to be self-reliant and free. Sobriety allows us to uncover and reconnect with the real you – the genuine article. With the clarity gained from sobriety, it is much easier to determine who you really are and where you are headed in life. The possibilities are endless.


Any time we use exterior substances to ensure happiness, stress relief or to deal with our troubles, it traps us. Life becomes unimaginable without the crutch, and your day becomes consumed by ensuring you are able to obtain it. Alcohol dependency places limits on what we believe we can accomplish. A sober person is not inhibited by alcohol; They do not sabotage betterment efforts; They are free to live how they choose.


Excessive alcohol use works to damage each and every part of our bodies, leading to health deficiencies and illness. Once alcohol is removed from your life, your body will begin to replenish its supply of minerals and vitamins. Your organs will heal, and in time, your metabolism will kick back into gear.


Sobriety provides us with the opportunity to renew damaged relationships with loved ones. Addicts will commonly take center stage and priority to everything else in life, causing hurt, embarrassment and resentment among those we care for. By removing the alcohol barrier, the healing process can begin to play out.

Need Help?

If a loved one is suffering from an alcohol or drug addiction, call an intervention specialist to start your path to recovery.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

“Thank You For The Intervention”

Making a point to thank a friend or family member who helps you overcome a self-destructive behavior is a noble act indeed. Self-destructive behaviors are generally associated with addictive personalities and can quickly ruin an individual’s life if left alone. Common examples include drug and alcohol abuse, gambling, or even internet preoccupation. In a great number of instances, successfully overcoming the addiction requires the intervention of an outside person or group. Once the addict has embarked on the road to recovery, a simple “thank you” may be in order. Here’s how to go about it:

1 – Sit down and write out a thoughtful thank you letter to the individual or group who spearheaded your recovery. Communicate your gratitude and offer up specific details regarding how the intervention helped you.

2 – Conclude your letter with details pertaining to your post-intervention life. Perhaps the best way to express your gratitude is to provide examples of just how your life has turned around since the invention.

3 – Pick up the phone and give them call. A one-on-one conversation will provide the individual responsible for the alcohol invention an opportunity to understand the full extent of your gratitude and sincerity. Another advantage of a phone conversation is the ability to communicate your progress in recovery.

4 – Think of a personalized gift to send the individual. This gift does not have to pertain to the recovery or intervention. It can be as simple as a teddy bear or flowers. The most important aspect of a thank you is the gesture itself.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

How To Commit An Addict

Alcohol and drug addiction is a dangerous vortex that takes hold of not only the addict, but everyone surrounding them. Loved ones are forced to sit back and watch as the addict’s life spirals to a point where the distinction between reality and abuse becomes blurred beyond distinction. For many people, it can be near impossible for friends and family members to commit a loved one voluntarily. Regardless of how this task is performed, committal rarely lasts more than a 72-hour period – leaving a heap of misunderstandings, frustration and rage in its wake.

1 – Understand that until the addict is actually ready to quit using drugs or alcohol, that you will be unable to help them. When it comes to addiction, the most effective weapon is empathy, compassion and a healthy dose of love.

2 – Educate yourself on the type of drug to which your loved one is addicted. Possessing an understanding of the effects this substance offers may provide you with the tools necessary to break through the addict’s wall.

3 – Research outreach programs that cater to friends and family members of addicted individuals. An array of organizations are available. Once again… By taking the time to educate yourself on the issue, you will stand a better chance of being able to help you loved one through their ordeal.

4 – Communicate your concerns to the addict. Allow them to understand that they are not alone in their suffering, and that help is being made available to them.

5 – Contact a Rehab Specialist today.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

How To Squash Your Loved One’s Meth Addiction

Crystal Meth is an extremely dangerous, addictive and common narcotic throughout the U.S. The drug causes increased blood pressure, rapid heart rate and damage to blood vessels in the brain. A loved one suffering from a crystal meth addiction is never easy to stomach. With enough time, users can become delusional, paranoid and violent. In order to properly address the addiction, a great deal of love, care and organization is required.

1 – Educate yourself on the effects of crystal meth. Seek out information online and at your local library. Find an area support group to communicate your worry with others who have dealt with similar situations. Approaching the issue will not be easy, but by taking the time to arm yourself with knowledge, you will stand a better chance of making an impact.

2 – Sit your loved one down and discuss your concerns in a rational, calm and loving manner. Avoid blame and finger pointing, as these actions will only cause resentment and anger. Ask them if they are open to the idea of professional help to address the addiction.

3 – Seek out a qualified therapist with experience working with addicts. This individual will be able to help you and your family to cope with the behaviors of the addict. Your therapist will also be able to help address any feelings of guilt you may have regarding the addiction. If you are intent on helping your loved one, you must first help yourself.

4 – Plan an intervention. Professional intervention services will be able to guide you through the process, while keeping participants focused and engaged. During the intervention, each participant will be provided an opportunity to express their concern to the addict while encouraging them to seek help.

Seek help today...tomorrow isn't guaranteed.