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A Unique Experience

Information About Addiction

Addiction is a serious disease, characterized by an obsession of the mind and an allergen of the body combined with a spiritual malady. Although the average citizen frequently misunderstands addiction, addiction awareness and education is on the rise. Television shows such as TLC’s “Intervention” and MTV’s “Real Life: I’m Addicted to X” are gaining popularity. When audiences watch these and related shows they find themselves simultaneously entertained and educated. Addiction is generally thought of as occurring within one of two categories: behavioral and substance. Substance addiction is a deadly disease that involves a mind-altering chemical, illegal or legal, and a compulsion to continue seeking out and using the chemical regardless of negative outcomes. People can become addicted to anything from psychoactive stimulants like cocaine to tranquilizers and sedatives like Ambien. Prescription drug addiction can start out when a medical professional prescribes someone a narcotic. Everything is by the book and fine until the addictive personality crosses a metaphorical “line” with the substance of choice — at that point the game is over. This person has a genetic predisposition for addiction plus an environment conducive to addiction. Once the line between normal use has been crossed over and transformed into an abnormal obsession, the addict becomes helplessly chained to the behavior or the drug and requires outside help to recover. Alcoholism can start when the occasional social drink turns into an absolute “necessity” for survival. Regardless of the exact timing of the initial addictive period, it is a life-threatening disease.

Symptoms of various forms of addiction commonly show up in the following ways:

  • Tolerance – The need to engage in the addictive behavior on an increased basis or to ingest higher doses of the drug to get the same desired effect


  • Withdrawal – Adverse affects that occur when the addict stops engaging in his/her addictive behavior or stops taking his/her drug of choice. The unpleasant symptoms they experience are often completely opposite of the symptoms the addict experiences while engaging in their addiction


  • Social, occupational, and recreational activities revolving around the addiction, or changing activities to shift toward ones that favor a drug-friendly or addictive-rich community, such as a gambling addict joining a casino club or a sex addict attending swinger’s parties


  • A preoccupation with the addiction – planning it, seeking it out, lying or deceiving others to cover up the extent of the addiction, acting out in unusual ways in order to fulfill cravings

Almost everyone is aware of nicotine addiction in this day in age. Anti-tobacco legislature and lobbyists have made a point in emphasizing the negative health consequences smoking cigarettes creates. Nicotine in any form is dangerous. Smoking or chewing it is moot when it comes to health risks. Once addicted, it is very difficult to quit. Addiction becomes a powerful entity within a human being and becomes a bigger problem than simply a matter of will power, morality, or “good” versus “bad”. Nicotine is a powerful chemical that alters brain chemistry in a very addictive way.

Addiction statistics are startling. They often fall short of the actual rate of use and deaths that occur from drugs, as many incidents go unreported. According to a government-funded online resource for addiction statistics, “Alcohol in combination with other drugs was the most frequently mentioned drug at time of emergency department admission (204,524 individuals), followed by cocaine (174,896 individuals), heroin/morphine (97,287 individuals), and marijuana (96,446 individuals). From 1999 to 2000, emergency department mentions of prescription drugs containing oxycodone increased 68 percent (from 6,429 to 10,825 individuals), and mentions of drugs containing hydrocodone increased 31 percent (from 14,639 to 19,221 individuals).” Thankfully, teenagers are starting to show higher signs of resistance to illegal drugs such as hallucinogens and heroin. The Internet has helped fuel the information-sharing age in which current events, research, and general information is readily available in unprecedented volumes. This has led to more people becoming aware of addiction in its many forms.



Our mission at The Hills Treatment Center is to offer a unique combination of educational and therapeutic drug and alcohol rehabilitation. In that spirit we present answers to some frequently asked questions. However, don’t stop here. Our knowledgeable and compassionate admissions specialists are available to speak with you personally 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

How do I know if someone is addicted to drugs or alcohol?
Diseases of drug and alcohol addiction are complex and impactful. We encourage you to speak with your physician, or refer to the symptoms checklists offered by respected agencies in the field of addiction research and treatment like The National Institute on Drug Abuse, or NIDA .
What drug and alcohol treatment choices do you offer?
At The Hills, we offer a wide variety of treatment choices ranging from residential drug and alcohol treatment to intensive outpatient treatment, each applying the latest and best addiction treatment therapies. Plus, at every level there are counseling and support groups from which to select to maximize the process of recovery.
Is detoxification a painful experience?
Not if you’re detoxing from drug or alcohol addiction in a residential setting at The Hills, where you’re given round the clock care and attention every step of the way, safe and secure in a private room with counselors, message therapists, and world class chefs to aide and advise you in comfort.
What if your detox program doesn’t work for my needs?
That’s not possible at The Hills Treatment Center because all of our treatment plans are personalized to specifically support the rehabilitation and recovery of each individual client.
Can I receive treatment for more than one addiction?
Yes. The Hills recognizes that many people suffer from multiple addictions compounded by mental and emotional health issues. Our Dual Diagnosis program addresses all of these compounding issues.
Won’t drug and alcohol treatment put me behind at school?
We understand how important it is to achieve your academic goals, but that will not be possible without addresses the challenges of addiction. Through our Young Adults program we will develop a rehabilitation schedule that allows you to continue your education.
What happens to me after detoxification is complete?
You are not left alone after drug or alcohol detox. We offer a myriad of counseling and educational programs to support your rehabilitation and recovery including Relapse Prevention, Sober Living and Sober Companions, Family Outreach, and New Lease on Life.
Who comprises your staff?
The staff here at The Hills is led by eminent addiction expert, Dr. Howard C. Samuels; columnist, published author, television talk-show guest on the leading edge of drug and alcohol treatment modalities. Our team of experienced professionals and paraprofessionals often know first – hand what drug and alcohol treatment and recovery are all about. Our team is here to assist and support you at all times.


A guide to locating appropriate treatment, entering a rehab and more. Includes questions and answers, and a California Drug Rehab Guide.

• Family Involvement • Specific Drugs • Treatment Facilities • Financial Issues • Before Entering Rehab • After Drug Rehab • California Drug Rehab • Legal Issues

About Dr. Howard Samuels

Howard C. Samuels, PsyD is a leading drug and alcohol addiction expert. He is a licensed therapist with a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology with years of experience running two successful treatment centers, and is the founder of The Hills Treatment Center.

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