Our admissions team provides a three-step process which allows for a comprehensive developmentally appropriate evaluation. We begin the initial intake evaluation by inviting you and your family to a meeting with our Director of Admissions. At this meeting, we will evaluate the many contributing factors within the familial, social, educational, developmental, mental health and physical realm that have accompanied your decision to connect to NYCFL.
Frequently, excessive use of mood-altering substances can be understood as a misguided attempt to self-medicate underlying disorders such as ADHD, depression, anxiety or unresolved past trauma. Of course, the continuous use of this maladaptive strategy to cope only compounds the likelihood of addictive and/or mental disorders. Therefore, our admission process is designed to shed light on the interrelationship between these dynamics.
A board-certified psychiatrist from our team who sub-specializes in adolescent psychiatry and addiction medicine, will meet with you for this second phase of the assessment process. We will also collaborate with any previous and current psychiatrists and mental health providers to gain a deeper understanding of the history of your concerns.
It is through this comprehensive process, informed by in-depth interdisciplinary team discussions, that you will meet once again with our Admissions team to map out a detailed plan of action. We strive to co-create a level of care to embark upon and ultimately sustain the process of recovery. Our ultimate goal is to enhance the opportunity to return to an optimal level of developmental functioning and regain purpose in your life.
Addiction is often linked with mental health. For many, addiction develops as a result of using substances to self-medicate one or more underlying psychiatric conditions such as depression or anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder, Attention Deficit Disorder (ADHD), Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) or a fledgling personality disorder. Therefore, addiction treatment would not be complete without psychiatric assessments, monitoring and if needed, psychopharmacological treatment. Everyone at NYCFL is offered a diagnostic psychiatric evaluation and treatment plan as part of our comprehensive intake process.
At NYCFL, our board-certified psychiatrists have the mission of delivering a tailored and holistic treatment approach using patient centered evidence-based medicine combined with extensive knowledge in the fields of General Psychiatry, Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Addiction Medicine. NYCFL offers individualized and highly specialized care, placing tremendous value in truly understanding each person’s circumstances in order to form a genuine connection with patients and their families.
Our psychiatrists work closely with patients, their families and their clinical team to identify individual needs and determine how and when a medication should be part of the treatment. Psychiatric pharmacogenomic testing is offered to all patients as part of our tailored approach to medication management. An emphasis is placed on explaining why a particular medication is recommended and reviewing all the alternatives. Psychiatric appointments are scheduled according to individual need and range from weekly monitoring to quarterly check-ins. Our psychiatrists develop a collaborative relationship with patients inspiring them to become invested in their treatment plan and empowering them to succeed in their goals.
Our psychiatrists are fluent in the use of medications to aid the recovery process by addressing urges to use substances including alcohol, opiates, cocaine, cannabis and nicotine. Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) and Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) is offered when appropriate and our psychiatrists are certified to prescribe buprenorphine and trained to administer monthly naltrexone and buprenorphine injections.
Evaluation and Stabilization Program (ESP program)
We would all love it, of course, if everyone seeking treatment was “ready” and “willing” from the start. Unfortunately, we do not all operate on the same timetable when it comes to a process of behavioral change. Even within a family, some members may be more willing than others to engage in a commitment to treatment.
It is for this reason that NYCFL has a separate 4 to 6 week program designed to offer a more extended evaluation and stabilization program (ESP). This period can allow for more intensive visits with our psychiatrists and individual counselors to stabilize residual mental health symptoms or to challenge the wall of denial of the need for substance use treatment. It is our intention that with additional evaluation, psychoeducation, family contact and wraparound care (increased counseling sessions and visits with coaches), we can provide the stability necessary to connect to our outpatient treatment tracks for ongoing support and reduce the need for residential care (if it is not clinically necessary).
This program track offers two options; One option targets substance use symptoms and the one targets more acute psychiatric symptoms:
Substance Use Option: This track is designed for clients in the pre-contemplative stage of change. These clients will typically present with a more significant history of substance use than those in the Signal Track but are not yet in the contemplative stage of change. The ESP track consists of a more intensive approach to engage in exploration of the impact of the use of substances with the client and their family system. The track consists of individual sessions with a primary therapist (6-8 times per month), weekly family involvement and multiple sessions with the psychiatrist if needed. Family involvement will include participation in parent only sessions, family therapy and a weekly parent only group. This short-term track (4-6 weeks) will yield an in-depth understanding of the client’s needs and offer stabilization, thereby paving the way to a more seamless transition to an outpatient treatment track at CFL or a referral to a more appropriate level of care.
Psychiatric Option: This track is designed for patients with more acute psychiatric symptoms that require medication regimen initiation/optimization before they can be assessed for the appropriate level of addiction treatment services. The track consists of medication management visits with our staff psychiatrist (2-4 times per month), in addition to individual sessions with a primary therapist (4-8 times per month) and weekly family therapy sessions. This short-term track allows for the abatement of treatment interfering symptoms. The goal is to offer a transition to one of NYCFL outpatient programs, transferring to an alternative treatment program, or to a higher level of care.
Intensive Treatment Program (IOP)
Oftentimes adolescents, young adults and their families in the midst of a crisis are also faced with complicated decisions regarding the best way to access the most appropriate level of care for their situation. They enter a cycle of substance use or mental health systems that includes short or long-term residential rehab stays or mental health hospitalizations, wilderness programs, boarding schools and/or sober living options. While at times optimal, these options preclude the opportunity to try an intensive outpatient treatment approach that does not create the dislocation of local educational and vocational goals and disrupt connection to family ties.
Conversely, for clients who are exiting from longer-term stays in residential levels of care, the need to maintain a strong supportive environment is critical. Restoration of the disruptions in daily family life are critical to successful reintegration and maintenance of the recovery process.
At NYCFL our age-appropriate intensive treatment tracks are designed specifically with these needs in mind. We will co-create a wrap-around level of care that can foster and maintain a successful recovery process for all members of the family.
Adolescent Intensive Treatment (AIOP)
The turmoil of adolescence is by developmental design a time of upheaval in a quest to gain self-mastery and eventual maturity to lead an independent yet, emotionally connected life. According to Erik Erikson, a renowned developmental psychologist, successful mastery of this stage of development can lead to identity formation; complications can conversely lead to role confusion. Unfortunately, the movement on this pathway can be offset by any number of challenges such as difficulties in learning or executive function, connectivity to positive peer groups, familial tensions, past trauma or bullying to name but a few. Excessive use of substances or gaming can become a coping strategy that only compounds the mental well-being that is needed to successfully form a solid sense of self-identity. The real social and psychological pressures facing adolescents can compound the drift. Attempting to refrain from drug use in an environment that encourages “better living through chemistry” can simply be lonely. Parents can feel equally lost and helpless in their desperate attempts to “fix” the problem; oftentimes their well-intentioned but misguided strategies backfire.
At NYCFL our adolescent intensive outpatient program provides a much-needed safe community for both the adolescent and their family. We truly believe that by participating in our program, adolescents gain the opportunity to transform their “recovery” into a time of “self-discovery.”
Parents join with other families to create a supportive community to learn new ways to communicate more effectively. Our NYCFL master level clinicians are specifically qualified to assess and support adolescents who struggle with a full range of substance use problems and to strengthen the family relationship, reduce conflict and restore harmony in the home.
Our intensive outpatient program for adolescents (AIOP) is structured to provide up to 15 hours per week of individual, group and family therapy that addresses a broad spectrum of issues related to trauma, comorbid mood disorders and emotional dysregulation as it impacts recovery from adolescent substance use disorder.
The AIOP groups meet for up to three hours per day (after school hours) on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays. Our Adolescent group therapy approach to substance use is built around an understanding of the cognitive and developmental changes that mark adolescence, as well as, Dialectical- Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Seeking Safety, mindfulness therapy, nutrition education, focus expressive therapies such as music, creative arts, yoga and 12-step principles of recovery. Our integrated approach will provide a teen with a sense of community, purpose and long-term wellness. Parent education, multi-family support groups and individualized family treatment focus upon healing past relational ruptures to bring healing to the whole system.
Young Adult Intensive Outpatient Treatment (YAIOP)
Our Young Adult Intensive Outpatient Program (YAIOP) is geared to meet the unique developmental needs of 18-30 year-olds. Typically, this is a time when young adults are setting the stage of their futures: educationally, vocationally, emotionally and socially. Unfortunately for some, the overwhelming turmoil of life challenges can leave a young adult feeling isolated and adrift; their peers seem to be passing them by. If this sounds familiar then our YAIOP may be the right choice for you!
At NYCFL our YAIOP is designed to help find your own path. That is why we believe we can provide an opportunity to transform “recovery” into “self-discovery.” We use an abstinence-based approach to restore stability and sanity to begin to mindfully explore the deeper questions of “Who am I and How do I connect with others?” The consequence of excessive substance use and mental health challenges often obscure these life questions and contribute to collateral disappointment and despair for both you and your family.
Using evidence-based practices blended with recovery principles, the Young Adult Intensive Outpatient Program (YAIOP) at NYCFL gently focuses upon each and every one of these development challenges within the safety of a small community of peers. Our YAIOP is structured to provide up to 15-20 hours per week of individual, group and family therapy that addresses a broad spectrum of issues related to behavioral and addictive disorders, trauma, comorbid mood disorders, emotional dysregulation, gender confusion, educational and vocation uncertainty. Our master’s level staff are here to serve as guides; our sober supports are intended to keep you on the pathway toward your own goals.
Joining the YAIOP at NYCFL provides a sense of community, purpose, and life skills needed to become a happy and productive adult. We understand that positive family relationships are intrinsically linked to fostering future independence. By joining in our supportive network of family groups and family counseling we aim to help family members restore a sense of trust and build confidence to “let go.” Our goal is to create a mutually satisfactory way of relating that is both autonomous and interdependent.
Young Adult College Bound Program:
Transitioning to college is fraught with stress; the pandemic has taught us that the uncertainties of life can make this decision even more fraught with confusion. Oftentimes, the start or return to campus represents a rupture in the support system that has previously sustained recovery and requires the assembling of an alternative on-site system at the local college level.
The CFL College-bound program is intentionally designed to support the recovery needs of the college student and their family. Students together with their parents can be comforted by not “having to go it alone.”
College students in recovery will participate in a weekly support group composed of like-minded students. These students will also receive weekly individual coaching/case management to help sustain their recovery efforts while balancing their educational/campus life needs. Parents can participate in our weekly “Parent Only” support group to help strengthen their skills in negotiating healthy independence through effective boundary setting and communication. Our family therapist will check-in monthly together with the student and their individual therapist to negotiate any familial challenges that may develop or to simply support the individuation process.
Young Professional Program: The Young Professional program is a treatment program in the evening which meets once a week for an hour and a half. This group is intended for clients who are 21 and over, who have either evolved through our Intensive Outpatient program, starting their recovery journey, or who require support in balancing employment and recovery. Clients attending this group are also assigned an individual therapist as well as marital and family therapist to meet with weekly. Parents of our Young Professionals may also attend our “Parent Only” treatment groups to assist in supporting the family through healthy individuation and independence through effective boundary setting and communication skills.
Signal Program: Our Signal program is geared towards prevention and early intervention. The Signal track provides a clear psychoeducational foundation on the repercussions of excessive substance use. The Signal track also offers relapse prevention, mindfulness, emotional regulation and distress tolerance skills. The combined intention is to challenge an adolescent to contemplate the potential consequences of their own use while presenting alternative strategies to the use of problematic mood-altering chemicals and behaviors. Prevention also starts at home. In our signal parent track, parents will learn how to talk to their children about substance use, help parents positively influence their children, while teaching their children about boundaries.
Signal is a 12-week family commitment, in which the adolescent/young adult will attend one group a week and one individual counseling session. Together with their family, clients will participate in a weekly individual family session. Signal parents are invited to attend one weekly parent support group to strengthen their own knowledge base around substance use disorders, family relationships, conflict reduction and setting appropriate limits and boundaries to positively impact change. Over the course of this 12-week period, there will be constant monitoring and assessments regarding the family’s progress.
Vaping Program (Nip It The Bud)
While adolescent cigarette smoking rates decline, the initiation of adolescents to nicotine addiction is at an all-time record high. This crisis has led the US Surgeon General to issue a national health alert to the “Emergent E-Cigarette Epidemic in Youth.” We know teens are most vulnerable to nicotine dependence; 95% of adult smokers begin use prior to age 21, leading to the early addiction to a substance as hard to quit as heroin
The National Institute of Drug Addiction refers to vaping products as “…. concentrated amounts of drugs disguised as electronic gadgets. ” Along with nicotine and marijuana are toxic chemicals such as aerosols, formaldehyde and acrolein that pose serious future health risks.
Having absorbed the hard lessons of the opioid epidemic, NYCFL is dedicated to act with immediacy to address the crisis of vaping using a 3-pronged approach that combines prevention and intervention strategies:
- Offering the “NIP it in the Bud” education series
- Presenting customized school-based education and training workshops
- Sponsoring continuing education (CEs) events for mental health/substance use providers to heighten awareness and offer current practice skills
If you wish to prevent or already suspect a vaping concern in yourself or a loved one, NYCFL is offering a non-punitive, psychoeducational approach. Our NIB program is intended specifically for adolescents, young adults and their families to attend together. We are hosting a series of info-sessions followed by an option to engage in a professionally led age-appropriate evidenced based- smoking cessation group
We can either arrange and/or refer to additional supports that include sober coaching, drug testing and coordinating with local college sober recovery resources.
We know that the excessive use of substances by a loved one tears at the fabric of family relationships. Intense feelings of fear often translate into angry outbursts or silent disengagement. Family members simply do not have the skills to know how to navigate this chasm and get the help they need. At NYCFL, we immerse our families in a supportive environment where you no longer have to figure out your next steps alone.
Whether you are a parent, stepparent, or significant other, we recognize that you need the professional guidance to address your concerns. We therefore believe that treatment begins with YOU! From your first phone call to us, we will help you to navigate the treatment options that are available and how to intervene with your loved one to connect them and yourself to an optimal treatment program.
In every step of the way, we utilize a family-centered approach to address the complex multi-dimensional nature of substance use disorder. From the initial point of our assessment through our intensive outpatient program, the family is always included in the healing process. Our goal is to foster a healthy attachment amongst the family members that allows for both independent and interdependent functioning.
We offer individual family counseling with master’s level therapists trained in marriage and family treatment. We incorporate the latest theories and practices throughout the vast array of services that we offer from individual family counseling, multifamily groups, psychoeducational support groups for parents only and ongoing support groups once your child has terminated treatment. Parents are invited from the outset to join with a strong and vibrant community of like-minded families that can offer support. Even if your loved one refuses treatment or prematurely opts out, the family can continue to receive their own support and guidance. We do not end treatment with you unless you are ready to go! As the Dalai Llama says, “Not on your road does not mean they are lost.”
Certified Recovery Peer Advocate Program (CRPA)
Peer support services are a vital part of the treatment and recovery process. At NYCFL we are especially proud that many of our peer recovery advocates are former alumni that have received specialized certification and supervision to become a Certified Recovery Peer Advocate (CRPA). This can be an important step for those who are in recovery to explore future career pathways in the field of substance use and mental health professions.
The primary function of a CRPA is to provide peer-to-peer connection. The role of the CRPAs is to assist with outreach to newly enrolled clients or to provide additional support for those already in treatment who could benefit from it. Utilizing their recovery expertise, professional training and lived experience, peer advocates can model engagement in treatment and commitment to recovery. CPRAs can also accompany clients to community-based recovery supports consistent with treatment, recovery, and recreational activities. CRPAs are wonderful “first friends” to help start the recovery process.
Since we opened our doors in 2009, we have always maintained our deep commitment to our clients and their families. We are here for you.
We believe in the importance and power of connection, community and fellowship. Our alumni remain dedicated to supporting each other on their road of recovery. Our NYCFL Alumni program helps those to stay connected with their peers so they can become part of a larger sober community. Our Alumni are role models; many opt to welcome the newcomer into their group. To continue experiencing the benefits of a sober lifestyle, our alumni have the opportunity to plan and attend sober social events. For those that need, NYCFL offers reduced rates for psychiatric/medication management sessions.
Contact Us Today!