Substance Abuse and Co-Occurring Disorders
Overview & Clinical Expertise
Your substance addiction – to alcohol, cocaine, prescription opioids, heroin, Benzodiazepines, marijuana, or other psychoactive drugs – has some characteristics in common with other sufferers and others that are unique to you. That is why you need the therapeutic expertise and flexibility of Silver Hill Hospital to effectively treat it.
Your treatment team will be led by a leading psychiatrist. After medical detoxification, the team will prepare a course of treatment specifically for you that includes behavioral, emotional and pharmacologic therapies. In addition, we will simultaneously treat the co-occurring psychiatric conditions that often accompany addiction. This combined approach makes Silver Hill a leader in substance abuse treatment in greater Connecticut, New Jersey, New York and beyond.
Levels of Care
Our levels of care correspond to your level of need:
- Treatment often begins in our inpatient unit, where you are admitted to the hospital for detoxification and to begin treatment as needed for co-occurring psychiatric disorders.
- After this initial phase of treatment, you move on to our men’s or women’s Transitional Living Program, where you develop an understanding of your disorder and learn the skills to manage the recovery process.
- The third level of treatment is the Intensive Outpatient Program, in which you live at home and come to Silver Hill for therapy led by our clinicians. Alternatively, we can arrange a post-discharge plan for your continued treatment outside of Silver Hill.
Instead of this standard progression of care, and depending on the state of your addiction, you may opt for our 6-week Outpatient Addiction Program. It offers many of the same therapeutic approaches as the three-level program, but without on-campus residency.
We also offer programs to support your family with information, education and counseling on how to best help you throughout your recovery.
Transitional Living Houses
As a Transitional Living patient in the Center for Substance Abuse and Co-Occurring Disorders, you will be treated at either the Barrett House for Women or Scavetta House for Men.
Treatments & Therapies
Our approach to your addiction treatment will be abstinence-based, supplemented as needed with medication-assisted therapies. These therapies have been shown to significantly reduce the risk of relapse, or are indicated in the treatment of a co-occurring psychiatric disorder.
The foundation of our treatment is evidence-based therapies, such as Dialectical Behavior Therapy and Cognitive Behavior Therapy. They will equip you with the skills you need to regulate your emotions, control self-defeating thoughts and self-destructive behaviors, and improve interpersonal relations.
Levels of Care
Inpatient Treatment – for crisis management
Many patients begin treatment in our inpatient level of care. Patients may be admitted for detoxification from alcohol, prescription medication or other substances. Simultaneous treatment for co-occurring psychiatric disorders is also provided as needed.
The goals of inpatient treatment are diagnostic assessment, safe detoxification, symptom reduction and stabilization.
Inpatient treatment includes the following:
- Psychiatric Diagnostic Evaluation – Based on information gathered from you, your family and your community clinicians, we develop a preliminary diagnosis and treatment plan.
- Medical Detoxification – We initiate medically supervised treatment designed to safely eliminate intoxicating or addictive substances from your body.
- Pharmacologic Therapies – We use medications in the treatment of co-occurring mental health disorders as necessary.
- Individual and Group Counseling – We provide counseling both one-to-one and in groups.
- Structured Treatment Environment – You will live in a supportive environment in which you can constructively apply the skills you are learning to achieve your treatment goals.
- Aftercare Planning – We will work with you, your family and community clinicians to develop a safe, healthy and meaningful plan for life after discharge.
Transitional Living Treatment – for continued therapeutic recovery
When you enter this residential program at Scavetta House (for men), or Barrett House (for women), you receive a thorough psychiatric evaluation, diagnosis and treatment plan, including pharmacologic treatment as needed. You reside on campus in a homelike setting. The length of stay for this phase of treatment is 4 weeks, but you may opt to extend your treatment.
The Goal of the Transitional Living Program is to help you develop an understanding of your psychological condition and new behavioral skills to manage your recovery process.
The Transitional Living Program continues the progression of treatment protocols from your inpatient stay, including:
- An Updated Psychiatric Diagnostic Evaluation
- Pharmacologic Therapies
- Individual And Group Counseling
- Residential Care For A Structured Treatment Environment
- Aftercare Planning.
Treatment also includes thorough immersion in these two pillars of our therapeutic approach:
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) – A goal-oriented therapy that focuses on identifying and changing damaging patterns of thought and behavior. Learn More about Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.
- Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) – A skills-oriented therapy designed to provide the tools necessary to regulate emotions, control self-destructive behaviors and improve interpersonal relations. Learn More about Dialectical Behavioral Therapy.
Women and Addiction
A woman’s experience with addiction and psychiatric disorders is often different from a man’s, so men and women with addictions are treated in separate transitional living residences at Silver Hill.
For instance, as a woman with an addiction you are more likely than a man to also suffer with depression, anxiety, and eating disorders. Domestic violence may also be part of your experience as a woman. In addition, the way you metabolize substances may have caused you to become addicted more easily, adding to your difficulties in withdrawal. These differences are reflected in Silver Hill’s different approaches to treatment.
Treatment is led primarily by women, and there are additional therapies geared towards your experience as a woman with an addiction. These include anger management, relationships in recovery, understanding emotions, and creating a life worth living. There are also opportunities to improve self-esteem with fitness classes and yoga.
In addition to this separate programming, you will participate in co-educational treatment groups with patients from our men’s program.
Intensive Outpatient Program – for ongoing treatment from home
Silver Hill offers you an evening Intensive Outpatient Program appropriate for patients diagnosed with an addiction and, perhaps, co-occurring disorders, who do not require residential treatment but do need counseling and skill building to function effectively.
As a participant in this program, you will come to Silver Hill two or three times a week for three-hour group therapy sessions led by licensed clinicians. During this time you will also maintain a therapeutic relationship with a community-based therapist.
Outpatient Addiction Program – An Alternative To Residential Treatment
The three standard levels of care for addiction at Silver Hill offer you a way to break away from the stressors of daily life to heal and then carefully reconnect to your outside life. If this residential approach doesn’t work for you, and if the state of your illness will permit it, you can opt for our six-week, non-residential treatment program.
The Outpatient Addiction Program utilizes many of the same therapeutic approaches as our standard three-level program, including both individual and group therapy, and outpatient detoxification when deemed safe and necessary. The program is designed to help you break the cycle of relapse and maintain your sobriety. We also identify and treat any underlying psychiatric disorders, such as anxiety or depression.
Outpatient Addiction Program Video
Dr. John Douglas describes the program.
If we diagnose you with a co-occurring psychiatric disorder in addition to addiction, our staff has the skill, sensitivity and training to treat your dual conditions together rather than one at a time. This Simultaneous treatment is the most effective approach for dual conditions, and often the least available at other institutions.
Dual Diagnosis Video
Dr. Eric Collins on treatment for co-occurring disorders.
Our patients tend to have a high level of satisfaction with their treatment, and a low level of relapse after it. A recent Silver Hill study of 645 discharged patients found that 4 out of 5 patients avoid a relapse if they complete at least one month of our residential Transitional Living program and stay in our recovery support program for ongoing outpatient treatment for another 12 months after discharge.
These are outstanding results and are substantially higher than the available national figures for addiction recovery. They also represent a benchmark for us against which to measure our own continual efforts to improve clinical outcomes.
We expect that you will leave your addiction treatment at Silver Hill with the psychological understanding and behavioral skills necessary for a successful recovery. You will be equipped with the ability to manage emotions, identify triggers, prevent relapse, and improve self-esteem.
Our multi-disciplinary team works as a team on your care.
Take a look at our campus and treatment houses.
Silver Hill is a warm, caring and non-judgmental space for you to recover and get on with your life.
Each level of care in our treatment regimen is an opportunity for you to understand yourself better and take charge of your future:
- Your Inpatient experience will coincide with a crisis in your condition that requires immediate medical attention to stabilize.
- While living in a highly structured environment in either our Transitional Living Program, men and women in separate residences will acquire the skills necessary for a successful recovery while remaining under close medical supervision.
- Our Intensive Outpatient Program offers you the freedom to continue your treatment while living at home.
We also offer you an Outpatient Addiction Program, which is a complete treatment regimen from medical detoxification to sobriety maintenance meetings, all while living at home. Inclusion in this program is based upon the results of your initial medical evaluation.
Finally, we offer support to your family throughout every stage of your treatment with us, to help them to assist in your recovery.
Following is more detail on what you will experience as a patient at Silver Hill during each level of care for addiction and it’s co-occurring disorders:
Inpatient treatment takes place in the Acute Care Unit (ACU), the Patricia Regnemer Main House building and The Lodge. Patients are assigned according to diagnosis and the type of inpatient treatment that is best suited to assisting in their recovery. The average length of stay varies by diagnosis, ranging from 5 to 12 days.
In this safe, supportive environment, patients are able to explore:
- Problem solving
- Relapse prevention
- Managing emotions
- Coping ahead
- Health and medication education
- Communication skills
- Stress management
All inpatient units are locked for your safety and no personal computers or cellphones are permitted.
Your day will be structured around a 14-hour schedule, which includes:
- Breakfast, lunch and dinner
- Group therapy
- Goal planning
- Twelve Step Meetings
- Recovery discussion meetings
- Wellness therapy and recreational activities
- Visiting hours (family members twelve years of age and older)
You will meet individually with your psychiatrist and social worker every day.
Men reside on campus at Scavetta House. Women reside in Barrett House, a 14-bed residence for located on the bank of the Silvermine River. Rooms in the residences have private baths and accommodate two people. (Private rooms are available at an additional cost.) Visit Being at Silver Hill for additional details.
Your 14-hour daily schedule will vary by day and week, but typically include:
- Breakfast, lunch and dinner
- Group Therapy
- Twelve Step Meetings
- Dialectical Behavior Therapy Skills Training
- Recovery Discussion Meetings
- Yoga or Mindfulness Meditation
- Fitness and Recreational Activities
- Visiting Hours
After the recovery begun in Transitional Living, you continue your progress while living at home through our Intensive Outpatient Program. This 4-week group-based program is run by knowledgeable, licensed practitioners on the Silver Hill campus. It covers Relapse Prevention, Family Disease and Relapse Warning Signs, Understanding Emotions, and Self-Esteem. Intensive Outpatient will also continue to upgrade your Dialectical Behavior Therapy skills, including distress tolerance. Visit the Events Calendar for program dates and times.
Outpatient Addiction Program
This 6-week intensive outpatient program meets on campus but gives you the freedom to live at home. You will be initially assessed by our Addiction Psychiatrist to determine the stability of your symptoms and appropriateness for outpatient addiction treatment. This assessment includes an intake interview, collaboration with community-based clinicians, and review of each your external support network.
If outpatient detoxification is considered necessary, you will meet daily with our clinical team to ensure your smooth and safe transition into recovery.
You then begin attending group therapy sessions led by our licensed clinicians. These groups emphasize Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, provide education about addiction, and teach effective coping skills. Also, you receive individual therapy, family therapy and psychiatric medication management. We strongly encourage family participation and our program clinicians make themselves available for meetings with family members. Visit the Events Calendar for all program dates and times.
While in the program, we encourage you to consider medications that have been shown to significantly reduce the risk of relapse such as buprenorphine (Suboxone), extended-release naltrexone (Vivitrol), and disulfiram (Antabuse). All of these medications are available through the program.
Upon completion of the Outpatient Addiction Program, you are offered our Recovery Support Program for ongoing outpatient treatment for 12 months after discharge. The goal is to facilitate a smooth transition from treatment to recovery and increase the likelihood of continued recovery.
We recognize that the entire family can be affected when one member has an addiction and co-occurring psychiatric disorder. So we encourage family members to meet with the patient’s social worker, psychiatrist or other members of the treatment team throughout the recovery process.
We also host a weekly Family Forum. Visit the Events Calendar for meeting dates and times. This broad, supportive, educational program helps family members deal with the effects of their loved one’s mental illness or addiction on their lives, and provides a support system for patients and their families.
In addition, our 4-day Addiction & Co-Occurring Disorders Family Program offers families the opportunity to learn about the assessment, diagnosis and treatment of addictions and mood disorders. Visit the Events Calendar for meeting dates and times. The program includes education about relapse prevention and aftercare strategies, communication strategies, conflict resolution and the opportunity to meet with other families in similar situations. Information on the neurobiology of addiction and mood disorders along with medication education are also a part of this program.
During your treatment with us you may also purchase our Wellness Services, which offers a holistic approach to recovery in recognition of the integration of body, mind and spirit. Services include yoga, acupuncture, personal fitness training, meditation and massage therapy. These alternative therapies complement, not replace, traditional medical care. They are most effective when combined with medical treatment to help alleviate symptoms of pain and anxiety. The benefits, both short term and long, help promote a feeling of wellness.