Learn More about Alcholism

and Some of the Best Alcohol Treatment Programs

Alcohol abuse is a serious problem in California, as well as in other locations around the world. As a result, a large number of alcohol rehabilitation programs have been established in this state. Some of them, like the Betty Ford Center, are world famous. Other treatment facilities have become well known when they have been occupied by movie stars and other celebrities. Although there are numerous alcohol addiction treatment facilities in California, this article will be confined to five well-established programs in the state. But first, you may want a little general information about alcoholism and alcohol rehabilitation in California.

Anyone Can Be an AlcoholicCredit: www.morguefile.com



Alcoholism is no longer considered a matter of moral weakness. Instead, alcoholism has now been recognized as a disease. The primary predictor of who will become an alcoholic is a family history of alcoholism. Many researchers suspect that there is a genetic component which can cause a predisposition to alcoholism or other types of substance abuse.

In addition to the genetic factors that may play a role in alcoholism, there also seems to be other influences at work. For example, the younger a teen is when they begin to consume alcohol, the more likely they are to have alcohol problems as an adult.

Whatever causes this disease, it can cause death if left untreated. Alcoholism is considered to be a serious illness that is chronic, progressive and ultimately fatal. An untreated alcoholic will continue to abuse alcohol, even though they know it is harming them.

Alcoholics often have a strong sense of denial with regard to the damage that is being caused by their drinking. They may persist in drinking even when they have lost jobs and marriages, or destroyed their relationships with other members of their family. Part of the frustration that comes for those who live with an alcoholic is that some of them are binge drinkers. In other words, they may go for periods of time … weeks, or even months … when they are able to completely abstain. Just when everyone begins to feel that the problem is behind them, the alcoholic may try to have "just one drink" and end up on another binge. As this behavior repeats itself over and over again, the damage to the alcoholic's health and relationships grows more severe.

It is possible for someone to be an alcoholic even if they "only" drink beer or wine. The type of alcohol does not matter.

Alcohol Treatment

Until the 1940's, alcoholism was often considered a hopeless disease. However, eventually a small group of active alcoholics banded together and discovered that, by offering each other support and encouragement, they were able to stay sober. This is a monumental change in the approach to alcoholism. This group eventually began to be known as Alcoholics Anonymous, or AA. The 12 Step program that they initiated is now used by people who suffer from a wide variety of substance abuse and addiction problems.

To learn more about Alcoholics Anonymous, you may want to use this direct link to check out "The Alcoholics Anonymous Big Book" from Amazon.com.

If you are the friend or family member of an alcoholic or drug addict, you may also be interested in attending Alanon meetings. This organization helps those who have been affected by the alcohol and drug abuse of someone they care about.

Alcohol Treatment in California

Although California has a well-known drug problem, alcohol addiction continues to be a serious issue in the state. In 2008, 44,000 people in California were admitted to alcohol treatment. For many of them, alcoholism was their only addiction problem. For others, alcohol was only one of the substances that they were abusing. In California, most of the treatment facilities now deal with dual addiction problems. The typical person who was admitted for alcohol treatment that year was a man between the ages of 40 and 50. However, many men and women of all ages are also in treatment.

Perhaps because of the celebrities who have been admitted over the years, California has some of the best knows alcohol and drug rebab treatment centers in the United States. Some of these treatment centers are elegant establishments, designed for the comfort of the very wealthy. Others are rustic and down-to-earth. There is such an amazing array of facilities, that most families should be able to find the perfect treatment program for their loved one. Here are five of the top programs.


Betty Ford Center at Eisenhower

39000 Bob Hope Drive

Rancho Mirage, California 92270


The Betty Ford Center was established by former First Lady Betty Ford, who suffered from a well-known problem with alcoholism. She came public with her problem after seeking treatment, following her husband's term as president. This is a beautiful facility, next to Eisenhower Hospital, in the Palm Springs area of California. It is in a lovely setting, with pretty flower gardens and a lovely meditation pond.

The Betty Ford Center offers both drug and alcohol addiction treatment, and detoxification, as well as hospital inpatient and outpatient treatment. Betty Ford has a 10 day residential program, a 28 day residential program, and day treatment. The Betty Ford Center does not accept insurance, only self payment. However, they do offer financial aid and have a sliding fee scale. As a result, do not simply skip this program because you are afraid you will not be able to afford it.

The Betty Ford Center merged with Hazelden a few years ago, which has enhanced the services offered by both companies.


Sober Living by the Sea

102 Via Antibes Street

Newport Beach, California 92663


This treatment center is located on Newport Bay, in Newport Beach, in a residential type setting. It offers both drug and alcohol addiction treatment, with both 10 day and 28 day residential treatment programs. Like Betty Ford, this facility only accepts self payment.


ECHO Malibu

P.O. Box 2911

Malibu, California 92165


ECHO is located right by the Pacific Ocean, on the Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu. It offers detoxification treatment, as well as drug and alcohol addiction treatment. It offers both a 10 day residential treatment program, and a 28 day residential program. ECHO also offers outpatient treatment.

ECHO accepts both private insurance and self payment. If your insurance covers substance abuse treatment, ECHO is one of the facilities which you may want to consider.


New Directions for Women

2607 Willow Lane

Costa Mesa, California 92627


New Directions for Women was founded by a friend of ours. She was concerned that many women lose custody of their children while they are going through alcohol treatment. Even when they did not lose permanent custody, they suffered greatly because of the separation. She was also concerned that fear of being separated from their children was preventing many women from seeking treatment for their substance abuse problems. This facility is made up of a collection of small homes and cottages, and allows women to have their children with them. Costa Mesa is the town adjacent to Newport Beach, and the children attend the Newport-Mesa school district while their mothers are undergoing treatment.

New Directions for Women has a 28 Day Residential treatment program, as well as outpatient treatment. It accepts private insurance as well as self payment. It also provides financial aide and payment assistance. If you are a woman, with or without children, this facility may provide a safe, comfortable setting for you.


Duffy's Myrtledale, Inc.

3076 Myrtledale Road

Calistoga, California 94515


Duffy's, as it is affectionately called, is located in the beautiful Napa Valley. Yes, the same Napa Valley where many of California's most famous wineries are located. It is in a lovely, rural setting, which many people have found to be a peaceful location in which to receive treatment.

Duffy's offers drug and alcohol addiction treatment, as well as detoxification. They offer both a 10 day and 28 day residential program. They accept both self payment and private insurance.


Obtaining Information about Other Facilities

If you are still looking for a treatment facility after reading this list, you may want to call the California Recommendation Helpline at 1-877-421-3038.

You may also be interested in reading:

Loving the Addicted Teen

Free Alanon Information

Your First Alanon Meeting

Why an Alcoholic's Family Gets Frustrated

Finding Help for your Troubled Teen

What To Do When Someone's Drinking Bothers You

Change Your Life with the Best Alcohol Abuse Treatment Programs

Learn More about the A.A. Approach in this Handbook

Alcoholics Anonymous
Amazon Price: $21.95 $9.01 Buy Now
(price as of Jan 1, 2017)
This is the famous Alcoholics Anonymous "Big Book." Whether you or your loved one has a problem, I highly recommend that you read it. It will help you understand this disease better.