Pandemic blamed for Oregon’s 40% increase in drug overdose deaths

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Oregon saw a nearly 40% increase in overdose deaths this year, a jump that’s similar to the trend nationwide.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention blames the increase on COVID-19. It said the pandemic has hit people already struggling with substance abuse disorders hard.

CDC figures show Oregon reported 580 deaths from drug overdoses between June 2019 to May 2020 . For the whole country, there were more than 81,000 deaths. That’s equivalent to the entire population of Medford, and it is the highest number of overdose deaths in a one-year span the country has ever seen.

“Many people who are using substances, they may be hanging by a thread as is,” said Dr. Tom Jeanne, deputy health officer with the Oregon Health Authority. “Throw in a pandemic and all the disruptions, access to housing, access to health care and mental health services, stress from losing jobs and social isolation, all of those things just compound the already significant stressors that many of these people are facing.

“The COVID crisis also interrupted ways people with substance use disorder can get help, such as mental health services, 12-step programs and ambulatory visits.”

The Oregon Health Authority is reporting a 63%t spike in drug overdose deaths during the second quarter of 2020. The deaths appear to have peaked in May and then returned to near-monthly averages in June and July. Death figures for more recent months have yet to be updated, but early data indicates a worrisome increase in November.

While most Oregon deaths from overdoses involve opioids, troubling contributors include methamphetamines and the synthetic opioid, fentanyl.

The state said it is taking several steps to try to reduce overdose deaths. For example, the state is distributing the overdose prevention drug naloxone. It’s using real-time overdose surveillance data to mount immediate responses to sudden increases in deaths. And it’s providing methadone to patients through opioid treatment providers and it’s using people who’ve recovered from drug addiction to mentor those currently using drugs.

People using opioids on a regular basis are also being advised to reach out to treatment programs, hotlines, and mental health services.

The Best Mental Health Treatment Center in Southern California

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Oak Forest Recovery Center is the best Mental Health Treatment Center in Los Angeles, Southern California. We help you with mental health through comprehensive treatment programs. Our intention is for clients to get better as they begin to understand trauma and how it has affected their lives. Clinical sessions help clients learn important skills for coping with emotional distress.  We want our clients to leave our program with a better understanding of themselves, an ability to change their destructive behaviors and tools to improve their relationships with others. 

Levels Of Care

Our program is divided into 2 separate levels of care – IOP & PHP. IOP clients participate in 3 hours of therapy per day. PHP clients participate in 6 hours of therapy per day. After an assessment of the level of care the client needs we design a customized clinical IOP or PHP treatment program that includes individual therapy and group therapy. When appropriate, we will also provide family therapy. Clients participate in treatment 5 days per week.

Treatment Modalities

Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) gives clients the ability to recognize how events/triggers can create thoughts, feelings and behaviors that cause negative results in their life. Through CBT new thought patterns and neural pathways can be created, inspiring positive outcomes in daily life.

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) helps clients learn how to tolerate overwhelming emotions and distress through emotional regulation and tolerance skills like mindfulness; intrapersonal skills development to build self-esteem, self-confidence, and self-awareness helps clients understand who they are in relation to self. Interpersonal skills development like acquiring emotional intelligence and developing better communication skills to encourage healthy relationships with family and friends are also at the core of our curriculum.

Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR) is a psychotherapy treatment that was originally designed to alleviate the distress associated with traumatic memories. EMDR enables people to heal from the symptoms and emotional distress that are the result of disturbing life experiences. Repeated studies show that by using EMDR therapy people can experience the benefits of psychotherapy that once took years to make a difference. It is widely assumed that severe emotional pain requires a long time to heal.  EMDR therapy shows that the mind can in fact heal from psychological trauma much as the body recovers from physical trauma.  When you cut your hand, your body works to close the wound.  If a foreign object or repeated injury irritates the wound, it festers and causes pain. Once the block is removed, healing resumes. EMDR therapy demonstrates that a similar sequence of events occurs with mental processes. helps clients disconnect from negative belief patterns and neutralize triggers connected to trauma and undesirable life events.

What is Sober Living Homes?

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Sober Living Homes that are free from drugs and alcohol. Oak Forest Recovery is an addiction treatment center that offers High Structure Sober Living Homes, Drug & Alcohol Rehab Centers. A complete recovery ecosystem consisting of 5 gender specific sober livings and mental health/ trauma focused treatment center consisting of PHP & IOP levels of care. A new treatment paradigm through 360 degrees of safety and full immersion treatment.

OFR 1 – Men’s House

All inclusive 16 Bed men’s high structure sober living. Cash pay.

5836 Fairview Place Agoura Hills, CA 9130

OFR 2 – Women’s House

All inclusive 12 Bed women’s high structure sober living. Cash pay.

282 Manzanita Lane. Westlake Village, CA 91361

OFR 3 – The Compound

All inclusive 3 structures. Men & Women. IOP/PHP Insurance accepted.

5836 Fairview Place Agoura Hills, CA 9130

When Does Drug Use Become an Addiction?

Drug addiction is a complex and chronic brain disease. People who have a drug addiction experience compulsive, sometimes uncontrollable, craving for their drug of choice. Typically, they will continue to seek and use drugs in spite of experiencing extremely negative consequences as a result of using.

Characteristics of Addiction

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), addiction is a chronic, relapsing disorder characterized by:

  • Compulsive drug-seeking
  • Continued use despite harmful consequences
  • Long-lasting changes in the brain

NIDA also notes that addiction is both a mental illness and a complex brain disorder. Diagnosing addiction requires an assessment by a trained and certified professional. Talk to a doctor or mental health professional if you feel that you may have an addiction or substance abuse problem.

Can Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) Treat Addiction?

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Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a psychotherapy approach that can be used to help treat substance use disorders. CBT is commonly used to treat depression, anxiety disorders, phobias, and other mental disorders, but it has also been shown to be valuable in treating alcoholism and drug addiction. This is especially true when it’s part of an overall program of recovery.

CBT helps people learn to better identify the negative and self-defeating thoughts and actions that can contribute to substance use. It is a short-term, focused therapeutic approach to helping drug-dependent people become abstinent.

How Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT) Works?

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Rational emotive behavior therapy, also known as REBT, is a type of cognitive-behavioral therapy developed by psychologist Albert Ellis. REBT is focused on helping clients change irrational beliefs.

The Basic Steps of REBT

In order to better understand how REBT looks, it is important to take a closer look at the therapeutic process itself.

Identify Irrational Thought Patterns and Beliefs

The very first step in the process is to identify the underlying, irrational thoughts, feelings, and beliefs that lead to psychological distress. In many cases, these irrational beliefs are reflected as absolutes, as in “I must,” “I should,” or “I cannot.” According to Ellis, some of the most common irrational beliefs include:

  • Feeling excessively upset over other people’s mistakes or misconduct
  • Believing that you must be 100% competent and successful in everything to be valued and worthwhile
  • Believing that you will be happier if you avoid life’s difficulties or challenges
  • Feeling that you have no control over your own happiness, that your contentment and joy are dependent upon external forces

Holding such unyielding beliefs makes it almost impossible to respond to activating situations in a psychologically healthy way. Possessing such rigid expectations of ourselves and others only leads to disappointment, recrimination, regret, and anxiety. Rational emotive behavior therapy can be effective in the treatment of a range of psychological disorders, including anxiety and phobias. It can also help people manage specific behaviors, such as severe shyness and excessive approval-seeking.

Overview of Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)

Kevin-Dunn-Behavioral-Technician-Oak Forest Recovery

Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) is a type of cognitive-behavioral therapy. Its main goals are to teach people how to live in the moment, develop healthy ways to cope with stress, regulate their emotions, and improve their relationships with others.

DBT can help people who have difficulty with emotional regulation or are exhibiting self-destructive behaviors (eating disorders and substance use disorders). DBT is sometimes used to treat post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

How It Works

DBT has evolved to become an evidence-based psychotherapy approach that is used to treat many conditions. DBT is used in three therapeutic settings.

Group settings where patients are taught behavioral skills by completing homework assignments and role-playing new ways of interacting with others.

Individual therapy with a trained professional where a patient’s learned behavioral skills are adapted to their personal life challenges.

Phone coaching in which patients can call the therapist between sessions to receive guidance on coping with a difficult situation they are currently in.

Each therapeutic setting has its own structure and goals, but the characteristics of DBT can be found in group skills training, individual psychotherapy, and phone coaching.

Acceptance and change. You’ll learn strategies to accept and tolerate your life circumstances, emotions, and yourself. You will also develop skills that can help you make positive changes in your behaviors and interactions with others.

Behavioral. You’ll learn to analyze problems or destructive behavior patterns and replace them with more healthy and effective ones.

Cognitive. You’ll focus on changing thoughts, beliefs, behaviors, and actions that are not effective or helpful.  

Collaboration. You’ll learn to communicate effectively and work together as a team (therapist, group therapist, psychiatrist).

Skill sets. You’ll learn new skills to enhance your capabilities.

Support. You’ll be encouraged to recognize your positive strengths and attributes and develop and use them.

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy

Karina Santillo, Clinical Director

At Oak Forest Recovery we believe that in order for our clients to sustain long term sobriety and recovery they must address the underlying issues that led them to abuse substances and alcohol. Often times unprocessed trauma can be the culprit. EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) Therapy is used to address these traumas so that the client can experience significant relief from symptoms of depression, anxiety, PTSD, addiction and panic disorders. EMDR is extensively researched and proven to be an effective psychotherapy to help people recover from trauma and other distressing life experiences.

EMDR employs a body-based technique called bilateral simulation during which a therapist will guide a client through through eye movements, tones, or taps in order to move a memory that has been incorrectly stored to a more functional part of the brain. The American Psychiatric Association, the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs/Dept. of DefenseThe Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, and the World Health Organization among many other national and international organizations recognize EMDR therapy as an effective treatment. 

Life Changing Recovery for Individuals Struggling with Addiction & Alcoholism

RJ Elizarraz

Life Changing Recovery for Individuals Struggling with Addiction & Alcoholism. Both an all male and all female facility that is absolutely dedicated to the mission of lasting sobriety with all its clients.

Our Treatment Center and New House is open, Call and schedule a tour today!!

Oak Forest New House

You have the opportunity to live your greatest life yet, don’t give up, reach for something higher, something better.


Only with a solid foundation are we able to achieve Greatness.

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Team Work makes the Dream Work

If you or a loved is struggling, call us today – we are here to help!!
(805)390-6647

Oak Forest Recovery is a structured sober living for men located in Southern California

sober living home

Oak Forest came to Mad Rose for help after the brand had been launched. The company had earned a reputation for strong ethics, consistent structure and a culture of compassion. The team at Mad Rose was struck by the good work that Oak Forest was dong in the community and voted to work pro bono on the account.

The goal of the campaign was to increase awareness beyond the local area in which the facility operated. A 4 minute “culture” video was produced for the web-site, YouTube & Vimeo. Its as promoted through the social channels and distributed directly to influencers through text.

Mad Rose also produced a series of “Impact Clips” (short, hard hitting video segments) that were posted regularly on Facebook & Instagram.