Dr. Erika Widera is a prelicensed psychologist who treats chemical dependency, mental health disorders, and relational difficulties. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at The Control Center. Dr. Widera received her undergraduate degree in psychology and criminology from Marquette University. She completed her doctoral studies and training in clinical psychology with an emphasis in forensics through the APA accredited doctoral program at Argosy University, Orange County.
She conducts psychological and neuropsychological evaluations and provides individual, couples, family, and group therapy services, utilizing a multitude of treatment modalities, including CBT, DBT, ACT, object relations, and various recovery models in the treatment of addictions and mental health disorders.
Dr. Eric Geffner has been a clinical psychologist and specialist in the treatment of impulse control disorders with an emphasis on pathological gambling disorders since 1998. He is a board member of the California Council on Problem Gambling and has directed their therapist training and certification program for many years. As a gambling treatment specialist, he was also involved in the initial phases of establishing the funding priorities for the California Office on Problem Gambling which exists within the Department of Mental Health.
Dr. Geffner has treated hundreds of gamblers and their families. He utilizes a comprehensive blend of cognitive-behavioral, educational, and psychodynamic approaches in assisting an individual suffering from gambling addiction. He has published several research articles and has given expertise to both clinicians as well as the media.
Eating disorders can take a heavy toll on a person’s health. Binge eating can lead to a wide variety of health problems, such as high cholesterol, obesity, and poor heart health. The underlying reasons that people binge eat, however, are usually psychological. Therefore, an effective binge eating treatment plan needs to address mental health as well as physical health. The Control Center provides personalized plans to address each person’s unique needs.
Addressing Underlying Issues
Binge eating is usually the result of a mental health disorder that has not received proper attention. Therefore, failing to address the mental health aspects of binge eating makes it nearly impossible for binge eating treatment to work. The Control Center uses a number of mental health services to promote long-term health:
Neuropsychological Assessment to help diagnose any underlying mental health issues
Specialty Psychotherapy that addresses mental health issues such as low self-esteem, depression, and anxiety
Spiritual Therapy that uses meditation, yoga, breathing exercises, and creative visualization to help individuals foster a balanced approach to life
Binge Eating Treatment Services
The Control Center uses several services to help individuals stop binge eating so that they can integrate healthier dietary and lifestyle choices. The professionals at The Control Center work carefully with each patient so that he or she may develop a better understanding of:
Mental health issues that can influence eating behaviors
Addiction backgrounds and difficulties with self-control
How family history can influence eating and exercise habits
Ways that an individual’s medical history should influence lifestyle choices
The positive and negative aspects of his or her nutritional history
How physical exercise affects physical and mental health
Healthy Living for Life
The Control Center is dedicated to helping people with problems with binge eating develop healthy habits that will last for a lifetime. To meet this goal, binge eating treatment plans often include individual, group, and family therapy in addition to:
Nutritional Consultations that teach healthy eating practices
Medical Management that helps individuals prone to binge eating stay in recovery during and after their outpatient treatment
If binge eating has started to have a negative effect on your life, contact The Control Center to learn more about how a personalized binge eating treatment could help you regain control of your life.
Deborah Sweet, Psy.D. is a licensed psychologist who specializes in helping people recover from a variety of addictions and traumas with a specialty in chemical dependency and spending addictions. Dr. Sweet uses talk therapy, CBT, solution-focused, and 12 Step Recovery models. Since many addictions are rooted in trauma, she blends Somatic Experiencing and EMDR treatments to help clients with a sense of resilience. Three areas that are frequently affected by trauma are a sense of choice, a sense of safety, and a sense of self. EMDR and Somatic Experiencing provide a different kind of access to traumatic material. Dr. Sweet has also helped individuals and business owners with their issues around spending and financial recovery since 1997. As a compulsive shopping expert, Dr. Sweet offers a gentle yet direct approach regarding resistance and motivation around money, saving, and shopping. In addition to psychological help, she offers practical tools on how to deal with money, shopping, and financial resources. She is an active member of the American Psychological Association, CPA, LACPA, and the Women’s Association for Addiction Treatment.
Dr. Yaghmaie is a psychiatrist specializing in the treatment of mood, anxiety, and addiction issues. He completed his medical residency and psychiatric training at UCLA, where he was chief resident of the UCLA Integrative Substance Abuse Programs and the West Los Angeles Veterans Administration Opioid Treatment Program. He has extensive training and experience in the evaluation of addiction, detoxification, and treatment of chemical dependency with medication and therapy. Dr. Yaghmaie has academic and research training from UC Berkeley, where he studied integrative biology and endocrinology. He has numerous professional publications and has been a sub-investigator researching medication development for the treatment of opiate and methamphetamine dependence. Dr. Yaghmaie is currently a psychiatrist at The Control Center and also has a private practice in Beverly Hills.
Xanax, as well as other benzodiazepines used to treat conditions such as generalized anxiety disorder and panic disorder, has a fairly high rate of abuse. Over time, people using Xanax can form a dependency that can negatively affect several aspects of their lives, including their careers and personal relationships. Xanax addiction can also lead to legal problems. Quitting Xanax, however, is not a matter of choice for many addicts. Instead, they need a personalized Xanax addiction treatment plan.
Xanax Addiction Treatment Services
The Control Center specializes in personalized addiction treatment plans that focus on the unique needs of each client. This means that a Xanax addiction treatment could include a range of services, including:
Neuropsychological Assessment that identifies any possible underlying mental health conditions that could affect a client’s success
Specialty Psychotherapy that treats mental health conditions, such as anxiety and depression, so addicts can develop healthier coping skills
Couples and Family Therapy to strengthen healthy relationships and build a caring network to support long-term sobriety
Spiritual Therapy to help clients regain control of themselves and their behaviors through meditation, yoga, breathing exercises, and creative visualization
Nutritional Consultation that promotes healthy diet and lifestyle choices
Medical Management to help addicts stop using Xanax safely and stay off the drug for long-term sobriety
Treatment for Long-Term Sobriety
The Control Center offers flexible detoxification stays and outpatient services that can help Xanax addicts regain control of their lives. Outpatient programs use a variety of services chosen to meet the individual’s needs.
Contact The Control Center now for a consultation to discuss diagnosis and treatment options that will lead you toward sobriety through a safely managed Xanax addiction treatment plan.
We would like to introduce you to some of the amazing staff we have here at The Control Center. This will help you get to know who we are, and why we love to do what we do!
Meet Dr. Priya Chaudhri. Her expertise is in addictive disorders, behavioral medicine and biofeedback. Dr. Chaudhri is currently the Clinical Director of The Control Center and is trained in behavioral medicine and addiction. Dr. Chaudhri has over 10-years of experience working at various outpatient and residential substance abuse programs and has been the clinical director of several addiction rehabs. Dr. Chaudhri received her academic and research training from UC Berkeley. She completed an APA accredited postdoctoral fellowship through Yale University in cardiovascular behavioral medicine. During her fellowship, she received specialty training in treating cardiac patients with co-occurring addictive disorders and became certified in biofeedback. Dr. Chaudhri has extensive experience in integrating alternative medicine and advanced techniques into chemical and behavioral addiction treatment.
Meet Jeremy Martinez, MD. His expertise is in addiction psychiatry, detoxification, and cultural psychiatry. Martinez is an addiction psychiatrist in Los Angeles. His approach to mental health is unique, using such techniques as EEG biofeedback and alpha-stimulation, in addition to traditional forms of psychiatric treatment. His interests also include dual diagnosis treatment in the rehabilitation setting and cultural issues in mental health.
More than 7 million Americans reported current use of prescription drugs for non-medical purposes in 2010 while the reported number of fatal drug overdoses has almost doubled since 1999 with the majority being due to prescription pills. It’s rampant in our news, media, and seems to follow us everywhere we go.
Celebrities are one of the most idolized groups of people by young adults, making their actions a strong predictor of behavior we should expect to see in today’s youth. Nearly 1 in 12 high school seniors reported non-medical use of Vicodin; 1 in 20 reported abuse of OxyContin. When asked how prescription narcotics were obtained for non-medical use, 70% of 12th graders said they were given to them by a friend or relative (MTF 2011).
With statistics like these, it seems like we will need to have a serious talk with our children about the dangers of medications.
There are three key factors that are driving the abuse of prescription drugs in children.
1. Misperceptions about their safety. Because these medications are prescribed by doctors, many assume that they are safe to take under any circumstances. This is not the case. Prescription drugs act directly or indirectly on the same brain systems affected by illicit drugs. Using a medication other than as prescribed can potentially lead to a variety of adverse health effects, including overdose and/or addiction.
These days, teens are partying using potluck-style drug exchange. Everyone brings prescription pills from their home medicine cabinet, places the drugs in a bowl and then everyone draws a pill, not knowing what exactly the pill is, what it does, or what it was intended for.
2. Increasing environmental availability. Between 1991 and 2010, prescriptions for stimulants increased from 5 million to nearly 45 million and for opioids from about 75.5 million to 209.5 million. This is an incredible jump which should be taken very seriously.
3. Varied motivations for their abuse. Underlying reasons include: to get high; to counter anxiety, pain, or sleep problems; or to enhance cognition. Whatever the motivation, prescription drug abuse comes with serious risks including death.
Lets all make an effort to help those around us and make sure that we can begin to curb the prescription drug abuse epidemic.
Ecstasy (MDMA) statistics show that its use is no longer common only among party-goers and individuals on the club scene, but that use of the drug is becoming popular on a much broader scale. An addiction to Ecstasy can lead to several short-term and long-term health conditions. Overcoming addiction, however, is not simple for many people.
Ecstasy has been a common drug of abuse since the 1980s, when it first become a drug of choice among party-goers who attended raves; Ecstasy was also big on the night club scene. According to statistics regarding use of the drug over the past several years, rates of use of Ecstasy are still extremely high over twenty years later. In 2007, there were over 12 million individuals in the U.S. alone who had used Ecstasy at least once in their lifetime. By 2009, past-month use of Ecstasy in the U.S. had increased by 37% within one year. There are currently over 14 million lifetime users of the drug, and there are no signs that rates of use will be declining at any point in the near future.
The Love Pill
Ecstasy is often called “the love pill” because it heightens perceptions of color and sound and supposedly amplifies sensations when one touches or caresses another, particularly during sex.
But Ecstasy often contains hallucinogens, which are chemicals that act on the mind and cause people to see or feel things that are not really there. Hallucinogens can throw a person into a scary or sad experience from the past, where he or she gets stuck without even realizing it.
The image of Ecstasy as a “love pill” is one of many lies that are spread about the drug.
Ecstasy is emotionally damaging and users often suffer depression, confusion, severe anxiety, paranoia, psychotic behavior and other psychological problems.
Ecstasy Addiction Treatment Services
The Control Center uses a range of therapies to help patients using Ecstasy and other drugs overcome their addictions in a healthy way. These services are included to break the cycle of addiction and help addicts develop healthier strategies for coping with stress, depression, and other common triggers.
There are numerous ways to treat addiction to Ecstasy and other drugs. The best option, though, is often tailored to the individual’s needs. The Control Center offers outpatient services that combine a variety of techniques that help individuals overcome their addictions by learning healthy alternatives to handling stress, pressure, and mental health issues resulting from drugs like ecstasy.
If you feel that Ecstasy addiction has taken over your life, then it is time to regain control by contacting The Control Center for help. Long-term sobriety is possible when you access to the right medical and mental health services.
We have one philosophy: “Our job is to get you well enough so that you don’t need us anymore.”
In mental health, relationship and addiction treatment, the philosophical vision of a treatment program is instrumental in deciding whether it’s the right place for you or a family member.
At The Control Center, we are committed to providing state of the art rehabilitation and personalized care. Our comprehensive program has helped many people suffering from chemical and behavioral addictions, mental health impairment and dating/relationship therapy.
Some of our clients suffer from mental health disorders like ADHD, OCD, PTSD, anxiety disorders, bipolar disorder or depression. Other clients come in with relationship difficulties. And many have difficulties with alcohol, prescription pills, cocaine, opiates, meth, marijuana, club drugs or behavioral addictions like sex, gambling, eating and shopping.
Our philosophy is to provide an intensive outpatient experience with highly qualified and experienced providers as an alternative to traditional inpatient rehab. We hope to provide you with the support, expertise, clinical tools, insight and experience to make the right lifestyle changes and modifications real time without having to leave your work and family to check into an inpatient facility for months at a time.
The Control Center has many treatment plan options, different price points, a highly qualified staff and an integrated treatment philosophy comprised of cutting edge neuroscience, holistic medicine, individual/group/family therapy and/or a 12 step or an alternative philosophy. And we do direct insurance billing.
On staff, we have preeminent mental health and addiction doctors from UCLA, many licensed and experienced psychologists, accomplished individual, couples and family therapists and many progressive leaders in eastern healing. This integrated approach with a strong focus on mental health and impulse control has been instrumental in our success with clients.
At the first visit or during our complementary initial consultation, we will map out a customized treatment plan. When a physician, therapist or other primary provider refers a client, we build our team around that primary provider so there is no interruption in care. And after discharge, we provide three complementary after care therapy sessions and a free alumni group.
Research shows that roughly 60% of people with addictive disorders also have a mental health disorder. An undiagnosed mental health disorder can be debilitating in every aspect of your life. A comprehensive evaluation and work up for mental health, relational and addictive disorder symptoms is a key component in choosing the most effective treatment strategy. We have experts in mood disorders, anxiety disorders, trauma, disordered eating, OCD and ADHD and the combination of psychiatric, psychological, therapeutic, group and holistic treatment strategies can be incredibly effective in alleviating an individual’s overall symptoms.
An example of the most common mental health disorders we treat include:
With new research and technical advances, we continually look for ways to improve our ability to heal. Injecting medical care, neuroscience and evidence based medicine into mental health and addiction treatment is a powerful and necessary component of good care. Cutting edge psychopharmacology, comprehensive diagnostic assessments, neuropsychological testing and neuro-imaging are just a few of the tools we use to beter diagnose and treat our clients.
Examples of Innovative Medicine Include:
Comprehensive Diagnostic Assessment
Trans-Cranial Magnetic Stimulation
Cutting Edge Psychiatric Medicine
Holistic Medicine (Eastern Medicine)
The use of alternative methods of healing in mental health and addiction treatment has been found to be quite effective. We may utilize holistic treatment in conjunction with traditional therapy, group and medication management or in place of traditional treatment methods.
For example, a client with ADHD and stimulant abuse (Adderall, for example) may come in and initially require a substitutive non-addictive medication but with regular treatment including meditation, spiritual psychotherapy and acupuncture, they may require less medication or no medication to alleviate their overall symptoms. Eastern methods of healing, in particular, have been found to be effective in managing impulses, decreasing anxiety and stabilizing mood states.
Examples of Alternative & Holistic Treatments:
Trauma Work: Somatic Experiencing, EMDR
Nutritional & Holistic Nutrition Support
With rapid advances in technology, the anonymity and accessibility of the internet and less focus on emotional connection and family dynamics, we are seeing a surge in behavioral addictions or impulse control disorders. The constellation of symptoms associated with compulsive sexual behavior, pathological gambling, shopping addiction, internet/videogame addiction and binge eating are both controversial and debilitating.
We are experts in the field of impulse control disorders. Our staff has published research on these topics and we have treated many people suffering from behavioral addictions. Treatment of these process or behavioral addictions is somewhat different than chemical addictions as many of these out of control behaviors are considered normal in everyday living.
1) Sex Addiction.
2) Pathological Gambling.
3) Shopping Addiction.
4) Videogame Addiction.
5) Internet Addiction.
6) Disordered Eating.