The Challenges of Staying Sober in California

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Addiction and substance use disorders are a public health crisis in the United States. 

In 2018, SAMHSA reported that 20.3 million people aged 12 or older had a substance abuse disorder in this country. That’s more than the number of new cancer cases yearly. 

Addiction isn’t just a problem among adults; every day, more than 1,000 teens become addicted to alcohol or drugs for the first time.

We know that treatment works, but access to services remain one of our most urgent challenges. 

The state of California has made strides recently in reducing barriers to care by subsidizing substance use disorder treatment with Medi-Cal (California’s version of Medicaid), but staying sober in California is still a challenge.

The Challenges of Staying Sober in California

The challenges of staying sober in California are many. It’s a state with a high rate of addiction and drug use, which means there are plenty of people who need help. 

The problem is that there are also plenty of people who don’t want to get help.

Another reason it’s challenging to stay sober in California is that it has one of the highest overdose death rates in America

That means that if you’re trying to stay clean, there are plenty of temptations around you, not always from people who mean well. 

Getting Treatment for Addiction

If you or someone you love is struggling with substance use disorder, there are many options for treatment in California. There are also many different types of programs and treatments available. 

Some work better than others, so it’s important to know what you’re looking for before committing yourself or your loved one.

The most common form of treatment for addiction is residential rehab, like Hollywood Hills Recovery.

This type of rehab involves living at a facility where staff members provide counseling services 24/7 and help keep clients sober through activities such as group therapy sessions and fitness classes. 

Some people prefer outpatient programs because they don’t have time away from home; however, these facilities don’t offer round-the-clock supervision like residential ones do.

Even though they cost less money upfront, they may not be suitable if someone struggles with staying sober while alone at night without supervision.

Understanding Addiction, Mental Illness, and Co-occurring Disorders in California

When a person is suffering from an addiction, it is often accompanied by a mental illness such as major depressive disorder, and vice versa.

This is called co-occurring disorders and makes treating addiction a two-fold process. 

When people abuse substances, they often feel guilt, shame, and a lack of emotion, resulting in depression. However, to numb the depression, they revert back to mind-altering substances. 

So, to cure addiction, many treatment centers must address both substance abuse and depression.

How to Help a Loved One with an Alcohol or Drug Problem

If you have a loved one who is struggling with an alcohol or drug problem, there are some things that you can do to help them.

Avoid enabling the behavior. For example, if your friend has been drinking excessively and is about to drive home late at night, don’t give them the keys or let them drive your car. 

You should also avoid letting them spend time with children when they are intoxicated; this could be dangerous for both parties involved.

Don’t try to solve their problems yourself. Instead, reach out for professional help from someone qualified in addiction treatment (such as an addiction counselor).

Reducing Barriers to Treatment — For Addicts And Their Families

If you’re a family member of someone struggling with addiction, the first step is to understand that recovery is a process that takes time. It’s important not to take your loved one’s choices personally.

If they want help, they’ll find their way there eventually. 

If they don’t, then it’s up to you as an individual or family member how far you’re willing to go in order to help them get sober – 

This could mean getting professional help yourself or finding support groups where people can talk about these issues openly without judgment from others around them (like Alcoholics Anonymous).

It may be tempting for some people dealing with alcohol or drug abuse issues themselves, not only because this makes them feel better but also because it helps numb some unpleasant feelings.

SUDs often come with anxiety or depression caused by being unable to cope effectively with everyday problems such as stress at work or schoolwork-related tasks.


The key to staying sober and healthy is getting help. If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction, don’t wait any longer. 

Hopefully, this article gave you a good starting point and provided some ideas that will help you get treatment and stay sober in California.