1/15/19

Fast, in-person access supports kickin’ addiction

Many people are resolving to live a healthier 2019. Some vow to exercise more, spend less or be present with family and friends. A new year brings renewed focus on battling addiction, including alcohol and other drugs.

“When someone takes the important step to ask for help, listen and act now. If they hear, ‘I’m sorry, there’s no bed available, or the soonest we can see you is Thursday,’ they see it as a sign to give up,” said Todd Beard, LCPC, clinical supervisor, Carle Addiction Recovery Center (CARC). “In-person connection with that person makes a difference – the sooner, the better.”

The rising need for mental health services and addiction treatment occurs in part because more people are seeking help. CARC provides comprehensive services for those facing substance abuse.

“Everyone can be susceptible to substance abuse or addictions,” Beard said. “Addiction exists at every age, in every social class or ethnic group. You can take steps today to get on the path to recovery.”

If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction, call CARC at 217-383-6039 or dial 9-1-1 for immediate needs.

The most common addictions are cigarettes, alcohol and other drugs. Media attention has heightened awareness about opioid addiction, but alcoholism is exceptionally more frequent, according to Beard.

“A lot of people don’t realize alcohol is a drug. It’s just a legal one,” he said.

CARC is an excellent entry point. First, patients receive an initial check-in and then guidance to appropriate resources – either at Carle or in the community.

Beard said confidential treatments include individual or group counseling, education or referral to a psychiatric facility.

“Removing barriers is important,” Beard said. “For example, a single mom who is an alcoholic may refuse help because she’s worried about what will happen to her children. For each individual circumstance, we offer choices and support.”

Beard encourages families to recognize warning signs.

“Sometimes, you can directly observe the behavior or usage,” he said, “such as smoking or excessive drinking.”

Other warning signs include:

  • Significant mood swings
  • Withdrawing from family and friends
  • Disrupted sleep patterns
  • Inability to sit still
  • Trouble waking up

“While you cannot force anyone to seek treatment, you can be a helpful guide,” he said. “There are many resources available statewide, and working through CARC helps make certain you receive the appropriate level of care from a reputable source.”

A Google search for “rehab in Champaign, IL” yields thousands of results, but very few are actually in Champaign. Beard recommends seeking care from places licensed by the Illinois Department of Human Services, Division of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse.

“If it sounds too good to be true or like you’re being sold a service, you are. We connect patients to people real people with their best interest in mind,” he said.

Reputable addiction resource services and providers will ask questions like, “What led you to seek help?,” “Are you in immediate danger?,” “Do you need to go to the Emergency Department?,” “Do you want to come in and see us today or make an appointment?” or “Are you looking for a bed tonight?”

For help with addiction, call CARC during normal business hours at (217) 383-6039, or dial 9-1-1 or go to an Emergency Department for immediate needs.