Information about Drug Rehabs in El Dorado Hills California
In the latter half of the last century, how to locate drug rehab facilities in California has become a subject of serious debate. One group felt that by setting up a formal and disciplined process, only professionals could help addicts. It was not feasible, they said, to accept any drug addict’s claim for a drug detoxification program in any remote or rough area without their participation. On the other hand, many medical practitioners felt that a residential treatment center could work if supported by a group of dedicated patients and volunteers.
In Los Angeles, for example, a residential facility like El Dorado Hills is open to all who would be willing to give up drugs for a while. But in the rest of the state, drug rehab programs are not so well established or sanctioned.
Drug addicts prefer them because they have experience in dealing with their addiction. And the popular belief is that people who have been through a stint in a residential drug rehabilitation center can get better in a more conventional institution where their emotional side is treated.
The need for a residential rehab program was not without precedent. Many leaders in the field had warned of the dangers of indiscriminate drug-using, a trend that brought to light some of the flaws in an alcohol-and-drugs treatment program. Perhaps, the idea of a residential drug rehabilitation center can be traced back to the solution set forth by John A. Widmeyer, a professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, in his 1966 book, “The Biology of Behavior,” written with Virginia Johnston.
The book recommended that drug-using should be dealt with in a group rather than individually, that each patient should be educated about the relationship between marijuana and nicotine and alcohol and other drugs, and that he should be counseled about family ties to drugs and alcohol. These recommendations would help both the addict and the counselor and would make them better friends in the end. The goal, though, was not to try to cure the addict but to change his behavior.
Since this program was introduced to the American public in the mid-seventies, Dr. John Widmeyer has remained one of the most influential and respected leaders in the field of addiction treatment. In 2020, he became the subject of the biography “A Shattered Heart,” which takes a personal look at a number of his achievements in the field.
“The Biology of Behavior” by Dr. Widmeyer also highlighted the diverse group of drugs that make up the population of addicts and how different areas in the brain respond to different kinds of drugs. It showed that addiction is not just the result of neurophysiological changes in the brain but has genetic components as well.
When Dr. Widmeyer began writing “The Biology of Behavior,” he tried to take into account these changes by making his patients use a laboratory computer program designed to measure changes in their brains. He came up with three categories of addicts: those who used drugs to deal with stress and depression, those who abused drugs because they were not having enough sleep, and those who used drugs to enhance pleasure.
Dr. Widmeyer found that people with all three types tended to be more functional and socially competent after leaving their drug rehab center than those who went straight back to drugs. He said that they retained the capacity to function in their normal society without indulging in drugs.
Dr. Widmeyer’s work has been utilized in drug rehabilitation programs all over the world. His name has been invoked many times in reference to such rehab centers as El Dorado Hills, Overeaters Anonymous, and Alcoholics Anonymous. He is still highly regarded, in fact, for being one of the first to examine the human brain in terms of its capabilities and limitations.
He wrote a bestseller that made him one of the most famous figures in the field of addiction treatment. His influence can be seen in the success of so many drug treatment programs throughout the country.