Gooden Center
A residential drug treatment center for men located in Pasadena, CA. The Gooden Center is a proud member of the National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers (NAATP).

(626) 356-0078
191 North El Molino Avenue Pasadena, CA 91101 US

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Archive for August, 2019

Reasons to Attend AA Meetings and How Often to Go

Posted on: August 30th, 2019 by The Gooden Center No Comments

Reasons to Attend AA Meetings and How Often to Go


For those who have never dealt with addiction or are still in the early stages of recovery, they may not understand the importance of twelve step meetings. People can feel resistant to going to meetings at first but over time they will start to appreciate the benefits of having group support. They can start to work toward their sobriety goals and structure their day around the meetings to keep them motivated.


In the early stages of recovery it can be useful to go to meetings as often as possible to help deal with more intense cravings. The first few months of sobriety can be the hardest in terms of cravings and having people to talk to about what you are going through can help you make it through. Many people attend meetings everyday when they are starting their recovery because they find it so helpful.


People find AA meetings useful because it gives them a safe space to discuss their addiction where they won’t be judged. Everyone in the room has been through many of the same things and it can be a very grounding and healing experience to listen and talk about some of your painful secrets. Meetings keep people connected to others in recovery so that they have support when they are going through difficult times.


The longer a person is in recovery, they might start to go to meetings less often when they feel stronger. However, many still attend a few meetings a week even long after they have become completely sober. The connections that they make in the meetings can help them manage what is a lifelong illness that is never fully cured.


AA meetings are easy to find and provide a good support system that can be beneficial even after many years of sobriety.



What to Do About Suicidal Thoughts

Posted on: August 28th, 2019 by The Gooden Center No Comments

Reasons to Attend AA Meetings and How Often to Go


There is a stigma surrounding the topic of suicide and many people don’t like to discuss it because it can be upsetting. Unfortunately, suicidal thoughts and even attempts can be common problems for people struggling with mental illnesses like depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder and personality disorders. Even though the sufferer may think that their feelings are normal, suicidal thoughts are a serious issue and need to be treated by a professional.


If you are having suicidal thoughts and are not sure what to do about them then the first step would be to reach out and talk to someone. Isolating yourself with these thoughts is only going to make them a bigger problem. If you tell someone that you trust that you are dealing with these thoughts then they can provide you with guidance and emotional support.


If you are in a serious crisis and need help right away then there are suicide prevention hot lines that can help take you out of immediate danger. They are specially trained to talk people out of a crisis so that they are feeling better and are in a place where they can look for long term help. A crisis hotline will be the first step but it is important to follow it up with treatment or therapy.


If you are receiving help from a therapist then you can use additional tactics to help with suicidal thoughts. Meditating can help you process your emotions and remove yourself from negative thoughts that seem overwhelming. You can also write down your feelings or find some way to express them so that you don’t get stuck thinking in the same cycle.


Suicidal thoughts can be a symptom of mental illness. If you haven’t been diagnosed yet it is a good idea to talk to a psychiatrist about your thoughts so that they can assess your condition and provide you with proper treatment.



5 Benefits of Quitting Drinking

Posted on: August 24th, 2019 by The Gooden Center No Comments

Reasons to Attend AA Meetings and How Often to Go


If you are considering giving up alcohol then you may be weighing the pros and cons in your mind. There are numerous benefits to quitting drinking in terms of physical, mental, social and financial health. These are some of the most important benefits of quitting alcohol.


  1. Feeling better/ looking younger

Drinking alcohol is very taxing on your body and causes a lot of damage to the brain, liver, heart and overall functioning. Getting the toxins out of your system will vastly improve your health and prevent the development of many chronic diseases associated with alcohol. An added bonus is that most people lose weight and start looking younger when they quit drinking.


  1. Improving relationships

Quitting alcohol tends to lead to more social stability and can reduce the amount of conflict in a person’s life. Alcohol also tends to isolate people when they develop an addiction. Being sober can help you to connect more to the people around you in a healthier way.


  1. Saving Money

Drinking can be expensive, especially for people that like to go out to bars and buy numerous drinks. The cost of alcohol can add up and for people that drink frequently they often lose a lot of money fueling their habit. Many people are amazed at how much money they are able to save once they give up drinking.


  1. More Stable Moods


Alcohol tends to heighten a person’s emotional state and leads them to go through a lot of ups and downs. Quitting will help you experience more stable emotions and find new healthier ways to cope with how you’re feeling.


  1. New Activities

People with drinking habits tend to spend a lot of time and energy on alcohol. Once they quit it can open a door to trying new hobbies and more positive activities to have a good time.



4 Common Myths about Depression

Posted on: August 23rd, 2019 by The Gooden Center No Comments

Reasons to Attend AA Meetings and How Often to Go


Even though depression may be one of the most common mental health problems in the U.S. it is a topic that is rarely discussed. People have many misconceptions about depression because of the stigma behind the disease and a lack of understanding about what causes it. These are some of the prevailing myths about depression.


  1. Depression is all in your head

People mistakenly believe that depression is something that a person can just snap out of or shut off. While depression can partially be related to negative thoughts, it is a chronic disorder that requires treatment to manage. It is not only a psychological disorder but it also has social and biological elements as well with physical issues that need to be addressed.


  1. Depression is a normal part of life that will pass on it’s own

Unfortunately, many people with depression themselves believe this myth which can stop them from getting the help they need. It can be normal to feel sad from time to time but depression is a more serious issue that is too difficult to resolve alone. You don’t have to live with depression and wait for it to end, you can get help to recover.


  1. Depression always requires medication

Although many people have benefitted from the use of medication to treat their depression, it is only one option for treatment. Some may prefer not to use any substances to handle their symptoms and would prefer to focus on other methods including cognitive behavioral therapy. Taking medication depends on the severity of the condition as well as the individual’s personal choices.


  1. Depression is a weakness

Many people deal with the stigma that having depression means that you are weak and can’t handle life. The reality is that depression is a psychological condition that is not a choice and has nothing to do with how strong someone is. Getting treatment take strength and courage for people dealing with difficult feelings.



The Differences Between Borderline Personality Disorder and Bipolar Disorder

Posted on: August 21st, 2019 by The Gooden Center No Comments

Reasons to Attend AA Meetings and How Often to Go


Mental illnesses can be complex and difficult to diagnose, especially when they share similar symptoms to other illnesses. Borderline personality disorder and bipolar disorder are often confused because they have some similar clinical features. The two illnesses also frequently co-occur which can make it even more challenging to get an accurate diagnosis.


Borderline personality disorder or BPD is characterized by impulsivity, unstable relationships, cognitive problems and affective disturbance. People with bipolar disorder can also be impulsive and show psychotic symptoms as well as mood disturbances. The two problems are related and often misdiagnosed as psychiatrists may mistake one for the other.


One of the major differences between BPD and bipolar disorder is the length of time in which mood changes occur. Mood swings can be short lived for people with BPD, often lasting only a few hours at a time and they are normally in reaction to an environmental stressor. Someone with bipolar disorder on the other hand will experience mood disturbances that last weeks or even months and the moods will occur out of the blue.


People with BPD also tend to have more feelings of worthlessness and fears of abandonment that may be less common in bipolar disorder. People who are bipolar can often have an inflated sense of self-esteem due to their manic episodes which make them elated and grandiose. People with BPD also see their problems with relationships as the source of their suffering while those with bipolar disorder will see them as a consequence of their behavior.


Both disorders can lead the individual to consider and often attempt suicide or self-harm. It is important for a person to take time to get an accurate diagnosis so that they can get proper treatment for either their borderline personality disorder symptoms or their bipolar disorder.