For Admissions call 844-749-1560
For Admissions call 844-749-1560

Let’s Pay it Forward

Monday, 21 September, 2015

recovery_monthSeptember is National Recovery Month, so let’s pay it forward! Whether you support your favorite charity or perform an act of kindness to a friend or stranger – it’s all about being of service to others.

If you’re looking for a way to serve on a grander scale to help break the stigma, consider applying to join the Heroes in Recovery team as a lead advocate. The 2016 Heroes in Recovery lead advocate application deadline is 10/30/15.

The Depression and Anxiety Cycle

Monday, 21 September, 2015

Depression and anxiety are closely related and they work together in an antagonistic way. Severe anxiety can cause depression due to the overwhelming fear that ‘it’ will not get better. Whether it is a situation, event or a memory from the past, once a person becomes paralyzed with fear depression and hopelessness are just around the corner. Many times people go to residential treatment for depression symptoms only to find out that anxiety is the root issue. A residential treatment for depression and anxiety will help you simultaneously eliminate both of these mood disorders.

When an individual attempts to manage moods without the intervention of a residential treatment for depression and anxiety, it can lead to seeking unhealthy alternatives. Drug and alcohol abuse, gambling, shopping and other forms of unhealthy behaviors become forms of self-medication for mood discomfort. Once the initial change in feelings ends, the uncomfortable emotion remains. From this we learn that temporary fixes only contribute to supporting the uncomfortable mood.

Addiction only makes depression and anxiety worse and the individual is often left with unresolved emotions. If there is an additional substance abuse issue involved, it is imperative to find a residential treatment for depression and anxiety that will address addiction too. Focusing only on addiction can hurt and cause more damage resulting in the need for immediate additional care. Proper guidance, education and healthy outlets help to stop the depression and anxiety cycle.

If you’ve found yourself struggling with depression, anxiety or another common mental health disorder, consider enrolling at Lifeskills South Florida. Lifeskills is an accredited dual diagnosis treatment center serving the Fort Lauderdale area. We currently offer treatment in both residential and outpatient settings. To reach our admissions office, please call 844-749-1560 or complete our contact form

Monthly Alumni Group

Friday, 18 September, 2015

Hi Alumnus,

Just a reminder… this month Alumni Group will be meeting at Lifeskills THIS Wednesday, September 23rd, at 7pm. Amongst other items, we will discuss thoughts on our Annual Holiday Dinner. Hope to see you there!

For those of you that received a template for a personalized Alumni Tile to be placed on the wall of the Auditorium at Lifeskills, please try to complete those and return to me ASAP. If you did not receive a template and would like to create a tile, I can email you a template or you can get one at the next Alumni Group meeting.

As always, if you have any questions, or if there is another Alumni you know that is interested in attending, please have them contact me @ 954-834-5099 ext.212, or email me @

God Bless

Vapor Pens and Synthetic Drugs in Deerfield Beach, Florida

Tuesday, 15 September, 2015

Cunning, baffling and powerful are the words used to describe the disease of addiction. On September 5, 2015, CNN published a story depicting the latest trend for covert drug use, vapor pens. A vapor pen, also known as an e-cigarette, heats a liquid substance that in turn is inhaled. The beauty for cigarette smokers is that the vapor pen creates a steam instead of smoke which makes it easier to hide the habit. Police in Deerfield, Florida are finding more and more illegal substances being smoked using vapor pens, because of its non-detectable odor. “Thirty three people have died in Broward County from synthetic drug use, some involving vapor pens.” Additionally, mental health facilities in south Florida are seeing an increase in admissions from those who have psychotic symptoms as a result of smoking synthetic drugs.

Even more frightening is that the Deerfield police report social media sites, such as Instagram, show people using vapor pens which could contain other harmful and possibly lethal substances. Vapor pens have become more of a fad than a help to quit smoking or stop the nuisance of cigarette smoke. It seems the disease of addiction has taken yet another good intention and twisted it to claim more lives and send more people to mental health facilities. In south Florida, and as a society, we need to become even more aware concerning the behavior of our loved ones. If you believe there is more than nicotine being used in their vapor pens, ask questions.

Take time to inform yourself about vapor pens, synthetic drugs and which mental health facilities in south Florida treat this addiction. Vaping: The latest scourge in drug abuse
Rachel Rowitt, Ed.D, LMHC, CAP has worked in the field of clinical psychology for 15 years. She is a freelance writer who specializes in educating the community about the effects of mental illness, addiction and how to make effective changes. She has been affiliated with Lifeskills, a residential treatment facility for mental illness and addiction, for over 5 years.

It’s Suicide Prevention Week: What Are You Doing?

Saturday, 12 September, 2015

unnamedThis week is National Suicide Prevention Week, an annual observance that aims to inform and engage the nation around the topic of suicide prevention, encourage mental health treatment and educate people on suicide’s warning signs and risk factors.

Use the suicide infographic achieve a better understanding about suicide and the ways we can help prevent the more than 36,000 deaths by suicide each year.

Check out the articles in the National Council Magazine suicide prevention issue and share information with your networks, friends, family and people you serve.

Share information about the Black Dog Ride to support suicide prevention and Mental Health First Aid. On September 13, a band of 65 Australian motorcyclists will roll into New York City to begin the first-ever 4,350-mile “Black Dog Ride” across the United States. Their mission is to raise awareness and funds to support trainings in Mental Health First Aid for first responders and veterans. Check out this video to learn more about the ride, and donate here to help support the cause.

Suicide In America Infographic (Right Click to Save)


The Suicide Trap

Thursday, 10 September, 2015

Have you ever interacted with someone who on the outside appears happy, collected and participating in life, only to find out they have attempted suicide? What the person did not show

was the inside, where they are in tremendous pain and suicide had become an option. People with this idea are usually waiting for the right time to execute their plan, because they feel

helplessly trapped and overwhelmed by suicidal thoughts.

According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) 2013 report, 41,149 people in America committed suicide. This number continues to grow. The leading group to successfully kill themselves in 2013 was 15-24 year olds. The devastation of suicide impacts all those who knew the individual no matter what the age of their lost loved one might have been. Unless this dangerous pattern is externally intervened upon by family, friends or in residential treatment, over time these recurring behaviors and thoughts will strengthen securing one into the suicide trap.

What Sets the Suicide Trap?

People who decide taking their own life is an option do not believe there is any way out of how they are feeling. This may be linked to their actual situation or they may have an inability to get past certain life events that have left them feeling hopelessly trapped. Traumas, deaths of loved ones, sexual abuse, physical abuse, drug and alcohol abuse are just a few of the events leading to negative thought patterns, giving way to the option of suicide. Sometimes people blame themselves for situations that have occurred and may have been out of their control. For example, a physically abused young adult may think, “I am a bad person and no one will ever accept me. I am already alone, so if I die it won’t matter.” Although this is just an example, many people who come through residential treatment make similar statements.

Others struggle with chemical imbalances and the impulsivity of wanting to die in a moment of despair, which can lead to a successful suicide. Many people with borderline personality disorder, bipolar disorder and depression may have taken their own life based upon a fleeting feeling. A permanent fix for a temporary feeling, no matter how toxic that emotion might be, reveals a problem in one’s thinking. It can blind the person who is contemplating suicide, making it extremely difficult to see that change can be around the corner. For example, a person with borderline personality disorder may make a statement like, “This pain I have is too much and no one understands what I am feeling. If I was dead, then they would understand.” For this individual, the trap has been set and this type of negative thinking may lead to a self-harm gesture which sometimes ends in suicide.

How to Help the Suicidal Person

There is a way out of the suicide trap. First, it is important to not minimize how someone feels or question them in a challenging way. Instead, approach them from a concerned and patient mind-set. This will allow you to maintain open communication instead of them shutting you out. Second, understand you have no control over changing a person’s suicidal thoughts no matter how much you care about the individual. It is important to know your options for introducing professional help into the situation. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 1-800-273-8255 and is available 24/7 to help your loved one to have a connection anytime. Lastly, it is important as family and friends to continue educating yourself about suicide prevention and residential treatment options as your first line of defense.

If yourself or someone you know are struggling with a mental health disorder, consider enrolling at Lifeskills South Florida. Lifeskills is an accredited dual diagnosis treatment center in the Fort Lauderdale, Florida area. To reach our admissions office, please call 844-749-1560 or complete our contact form

Path of Addiction

Tuesday, 1 September, 2015

Substance abuse is one of the most common addictions that family and friends notice. Addicts will describe initial alcohol and drug abuse as exciting, euphoric and free from worry, a break from responsibility. Others may state they become more confident, likable, and are more successful at work. Some claim they are only social users. What the individual may overlook is the aftermath of destruction that substance abuse leaves behind. Multiple DUIs, dropping out or flunking college semesters, ruined relationships and so on.

Family, friends, acquaintances and sometimes even strangers are affected by alcohol and drug abuse. Shameful confessions from addicts about cheating, lying and stealing leave them hiding from family and friends. This separation only contributes to the ongoing addiction. Unfortunately, isolation becomes a way of life because their loyalty lies with the substance of abuse. Addiction consumes the mind and body leading addicts to become obsessed with obtaining, using and avoiding the come down off drugs and alcohol. Addiction is exhausting and loved ones need help finding another path.

Once the decision is made to get help for substance abuse, relationships can be repaired, underlying mood issues can be resolved, goals can be completed and isolation reversed. School, work and family become the priority. Making the phone call for help is sometimes difficult. It is ok to offer a loved one help and assist them with finding the residential treatment they need. To learn more about the mental health and drug treatment programs at Lifeskills South Florida, please call our admissions office at 844-749-1560 or complete our contact form.

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