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ADDICTION TREATMENT CENTERS IN OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA

Oakland, California is the eighth largest city in the state. As a result, and the fact that the city is a world-trading center and is constantly expanding, there is an easy access to drugs in Oakland. The most commonly abused drugs are cocaine, methamphetamine, and marijuana. However, there is also a problem with other types of drugs, like Ecstasy and heroin. The use of drugs in the city is only increasing and, despite the recent attempts by authorities to combat drug peddling, drug usage seems to be on in increasing trend with more drugs being sold on the streets of Oakland. To combat that, there are quite a few drug rehab centers in the city. For instance, there is the West Oakland Health Council. Granted, it is not just a rehab facility. West Oakland also has services that include medical care, dentistry, mental health care, adult day health care, and others. The substance abuse service is both residential and non-residential.

If you would like to find out more information on this drug assistance program or any other drug rehab centers in the city, our website can help you. Do not hesitate to contact them and get started on your road to recovery. Your new life is just a phone call or an email away.
WHAT THERAPISTS IN OAKLAND HAVE TO SAY
Carol Masters-Salnave
Carol Masters-Salnave
Oakland, CA 94612

What types of services do you offer? What issues do you specify treatment for?

I do Psychotherapy with adult individuals, couples, adolescents, process groups, families, and children. I've worked with a spectrum of issues that leads someone to seek psychotherapy. We will recognize how you came to behaviors that may impact your ability to function and discover what will work better for you to live more comfortably. This may include, but is not limited to, substance abuse issues, family conflict, anger, anxiety, depression, or any issue that creates feelings of discomfort in your life.

What therapy modalities do you use in your practice?

I practice as a client centered, Relational therapist including psychodynamic, mindfulness based therapy. Forming a bond that will protect you, we'll uncover painful early, and current, experiences. I have also trained in Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) and incorporate that into my practice. I utilize the modalities connected with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) as well as Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT). Any or all of these modalities will come into play as we form a treatment plan that best suits the clients needs.

When should one seek treatment?

I recognize the admirable level of courage within to seek therapy when life has become difficult and I will honor this commitment. The human response to pain is developing behaviors that allow coping at the time but can undermine our ability to be joyful, and productive, currently. We will explore your life journey while bringing issues to light, encourage better life choices to be made in the present. By creating a healing relationship within therapy we can work together to shed light on issues, developing your motivation to make adjustments.

What relationships exist between mental health and substance abuse? What services do you provide for someone suffering with either and/or both?

It is my belief that mental health and substance abuse are closely related. By working to heal painful experiences, the client becomes able to function without the coping mechanism of drug abuse. I provide a safe place to address what's not working for you in your life.

Carol Masters-Salnave is a Marriage & Family Therapist in Oakland, California. To learn more about Carol's practice, please call (510) 629-1059 or email at csalnave12@gmail.com.

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Carol Masters-Salnave
505 14th Street
Oakland, CA 94612
David Irving
David Irving
Oakland, CA 94618

What therapy approach(es) do you utilize? What issues do you specify treatment for?

I use Cognitive Behavioral and Client Centered theories to be create a comfortable and confidential therapeutic environment to support clients in being able to live optimally. I specialize in treating issues of trauma, issues with adolescents and LGBT issues.

What can one expect to gain from therapy?

In therapy one can find a comfortable and confidential environment to gain insight around specific issues and problems that are preventing a person from living their life to the fullest. Therapy is a tool that can be used to help individuals identify and access inner strength to overcome life's hurdles. Participation in psychotherapy can result in a number of positive benefits including: reduced stress and anxiety, a decrease in negative thoughts and self-sabotaging behaviors, improved interpersonal relationships, increased comfort at work or school, increased capacity for intimacy, and increased self confidence.

What is unique about you as a therapist?

I have over ten years of experience in providing therapy in Oakland, CA and the surrounding cities of the Bay Area. I am skilled in creating positive relationships with ethnically and sexually-diverse minority groups. It is important for me to be able to provide affordable options for psychotherapy for youth and adults in Alameda County.

What relationship exists between mental health and substance abuse?

I feel that when people struggle with mental health issues, substances are often used to self medicate and numb feelings of anxiety or sadness. It is important to get treatment for mental health issues to better be able to deal with stress and difficult emotions that coincide with living life. 

David Irving, MFT provides therapy for individuals, couples, families and adolescents in Oakland, CA. For more information, please call (510) 394-5054.

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David Irving
5332 College Ave, Suite 205
Oakland, CA 94618
Deanna Reardon
Deanna Reardon
Oakland, CA 94611

What types of services do you offer?

I offer brief and long-term psychotherapy for children, teens, adults and couples. What issues do you specify treatment for? Depression, anxiety, addiction, substance abuse, eating disorders, grief and loss, infertility.

What therapy modalities do you use in your practice?

Psychodynamic, mindfulness, CBT, harm reduction.

When should one seek treatment?

There are so many reasons a person may feel they need or desire therapy. Even if complaints fall under a label like “depression, or “anxiety” these words often fail to capture the complexity of what troubling someone. I prefer to offer real words to clinical terms. Utilizing a variety of approaches, I can help with issues pertaining to worry, persistent negative thoughts, regrets, and self doubt. Or perhaps a person is struggling with difficult feelings such as grief, fear, dread, sadness or anger. Possibly the suffering relates to unhelpful behaviors related to food, or sex or substances. These difficulties in turn can put tremendous strain on relationships, which then can become a problem in and of themselves. Whatever the particular issue, therapy can be a place to gain understanding and develop new ways to relate to ones self and others.

Why should someone choose to come to your practice?

I became a psychologist because I want to live in a socially just, responsible and compassionate world. Although there are indeed powerful and corrupt systems in our society that contribute to people’s suffering, I have hope that change is possible. I believe it begins with every person having access to the ability to live a meaningful and connected life. When we are happy, calm, and free of self-doubt our relationships and work thrive. We feel more loving, patient and generous towards those around us, and may find new energy and motivation to do things for others, or for the communities in which we live. These interactions multiply, and little by little people are supporting one another better, acting more accountable and working to build solutions rather than erect barriers. Feeling connected to people is fundamental to a happy life. I believe that therapy can help people come to know and express their needs more clearly, ultimately leading to greater personal and interpersonal fulfillment.

What relationship exists between mental health and substance abuse? What services do you provide for someone suffering with either and/or both?

Mental and health and substance abuse are inseparable. Most often, people have turned to substances because they are in pain, and unable to manage or cope through healthy means. This pain could be related to an underlying and untreated condition such as depression, anxiety, or trauma; or more broadly related to lonliness, isolation, family, economic or occupational stress. Turning to substances is a way to cope with unmanageable feelings, which then creates a negative feedback loop and leads to further difficulties in functioning and relationships. I believe people with substance abuse issues need a team. I encourage people to find support to achieve and maintain sobriety or reductions in use (such as 12 step, church, mediation). I also refer for a medication evaluation in order to assess if pharmaceutical treatment may be of benefit. I strive to offer people a compassionate relationship in which they can come to know and love themselves more fully. 

Deanna is a licensed psychologist with a practice in Oakland, California. For more information on her services please contact her at (510) 420-8092. 

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Deanna Reardon
3852 Piedmont Avenue
Oakland, CA 94611
Dr. Kellen Grayson of Psych Services
Dr. Kellen Grayson of Psych Services
Oakland, CA 94607

What types of services do you offer? What issues do you specify treatment for?

I offer individual, couples, and family therapy. I also offer consultation services and groups for workplace issues and conflicts. The issues that I typically treat are mood disorders, substance abuse, personality disorders, and trauma related issues.

What therapy modalities do you use in your practice?

I use insightful Psychodynamic long-term therapy and for short-term therapy I use Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT).

When should one seek treatment?

Treatment should be sought when a client's symptoms are affecting their daily life. It is also helpful when clients are "ready" for treatment.

What relationship exists between mental health and substance abuse? What services do you provide for someone suffering with either and/or both?

Substance abuse is connected to mental health in a direct and pervasive way. Most substance abuse is connected to comorbid issues such as mood disorders, trauma, and grief/loss. Other factors contribute such as genetic factors and environmental issues however, mental health issues are almost always present in severe addiction. I offer individual, couples, and family therapy directly addressing addiction. Having resources and information for outside support groups and medical interventions (when necessary) are ways that I give additional support.

Dr. Kellen Grayson is a Marriage & Family Therapist at Grayson Psych Services in Oakland, California. For more information regarding Dr. Bennett’s services, please call (415) 320-0141. 

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Dr. Kellen Grayson of Psych Services
725 Washington St. #213
Oakland, CA 94607
Dr. Paul Saxton
Dr. Paul Saxton
Oakland, CA 94611

1. What therapy approach(es) do you utilize? What issues do you specify treatment for?

With more than 35 years of experience across many settings, I work with clients experiencing distress in personal and life transition, relationship, work-related, and substance abuse issues. My goal is to help the client achieve a more satisfying and fulfilling life. I see adults of all races and cultures, socioeconomic status, sexual/gender orientation, psychiatric diagnosis, and relationships in both shorter and longer term explorations.

I start with the client's  presenting distress and previous attempts to address them. We focus on finding solutions to current problems and possible impediments to moving ahead including family situation, socioeconomic, gender/preference, racial/cultural, family of origin, and past trauma issues as necessary to assist in ongoing development. My style is to be conversational and facilitating and I see the initial concern as an opportunity for development rather than as pathology to be cured.. 

With chemical dependency issues, depending of the level and nature of use/abuse, I refer the client to increasing levels of treatment intensity including 12 step programs. The more severe the use or drug, the starting point differs. (See Tamara Cagney's article in the recent Journal of Employee Assistance.) My exposure to substance abusing clients began at the outset of my career and includes assessment and treatment of many types of addiction both privately and for Employee Assistance Programs.

 

2. How does one know if therapy is right for them?

The client decides based largely on subjective factors. The nature and quality of our relationship is paramount. Experience, approach, personal characteristics factor in.

 

3. What can one expect to gain from therapy?

Relief of symptoms including tactics for future use, enhanced functioning, relationships, effectiveness, satisfaction with life, and deeper self-awareness.

 

4. What is unique about you as a therapist?

My experience of 35+years, flexibility of approach, familiarity and openness in  issues noted above, personal characteristics (married, adult children, knowledge of spiritual/religious differences). I have extensive clinical and senior administrative experience.

 

5. What relationship exists between mental health and substance abuse?

Substance abuse is both a distinct problem which needs to be addressed first and--at least often--a symptom of mental health issues and cannot be treated separately. To the extent that the abuse interferes with functioning or is life threatening, it must be addressed first. But sometimes the reverse is true. 

 

 

Paul is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with a private practice in Oakland, CA. If you are interested in his services, please contact him at (510) 531-0220

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Dr. Paul Saxton
2220 Mountain Blvd., Suite 240
Oakland, CA 94611
Dr. Sam Himelstein
Dr. Sam Himelstein
Oakland, CA 94612

What types of services do you offer? What issues do you specify treatment for?

Individual Psychotherapy, specializing in substance abuse, addiction, post-incarcerated populations, and adolescents.

What therapy modalities do you use in your practice?

Individual Therapy, Mindfulness-based therapy, existential-humanistic therapy, transpersonal psychotherapy.

When should one seek treatment?

It's best to seek treatment when one has become aware that an issue (e.g. addiction) has gotten in the way of normal functioning, such as school, work, or social relationships. Further, if one's self-esteem is particularly low, or one is generally unhappy with life, it would be appropriate to seek treatment.

What relationship exists between mental health and substance abuse? What services do you provide for someone suffering with either and/or both?

Mental health issues and substance abuse issues are often occurring issues. They are intimately intertwined and must be worked on concurrently. My therapy style would address both as I do not differentiate them in terms of treatment priority and realize they are so intertwined that, at least when addiction is present, it is usually accompanied by a mental health issue (e.g., an alcoholic who became an alcoholic by drinking to avoid symptoms of PTSD).

Dr. Sam Himelstein is a Psychologist in Oakland, California. For more information regarding Dr. Himelstein’s services, please call (510) 704-3248.

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Dr. Sam Himelstein
329 A 14th Street
Oakland, CA 94612
Dr. Sharon R. Bass
Dr. Sharon R. Bass
Oakland, CA 94610

What therapy approach(es)do you utilize? What issues do you specify treatment for?

Every person who seeks psychotherapy is unique, and every therapy journey is different. It starts with a person who is in emotional pain, and is seeking relief. Understanding the sources of psychological pain, and unravelling the knot of thoughts, feelings and behaviors that keep a person stuck and unhappy is the goal of every treatment, whether drugs and alcohol are a factor or not. I work with people facing a variety of challenges: anxiety, depression, relationship issues, life transitions, trauma, grief and loss, drug and alcohol problems, and also everyday problems in living and the search for a more satisfying life. Often people enter therapy with a vague sense of unhappiness or discontent, and don’t always know exactly what is bothering them. Therapy helps you get to the root of what is keeping you from having the most satisfying life possible, even if you enter therapy not knowing what is getting in your way. Sometimes it just starts with an uncomfortable itch, a sense that you are not getting as much out of life as you want to.

How does one know if therapy is right for them?

Only you know whether you are ready and willing to engage in the type of fearless and searching process of discovery and transformation that can be the fruit of a successful psychotherapy collaboration. It usually begins with emotional discomfort and the desire for greater happiness, but it can become so much more: a process of getting to know yourself deeply, an uncovering of hidden strengths and capacities, a “portal of discovery”. You must be willing to tell the truth as you know it, both to your therapist and to yourself. You must be willing to feel uncomfortable in the service of new understanding and psychological growth. The rewards can be substantial, in terms of greater satisfaction in life and more skillful ways of being. You need courage and curiosity, and if you can build trust and a safe place for exploration with your therapist, amazing things can happen.

What can one expect to gain from therapy?

You should expect to gain better understanding of your problems, both how you got to where you are and what you need to do to move your life forward. You should expect to gain new insights, develop your skills in managing emotions, shift unhealthy ways of thinking, and find better ways of coping with your inner and outer experiences. If things go well, you should gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of your unique self, your strengths and challenges.

What is unique about you as a therapist?

I have a creative background, and this has sharpened my ability to listen carefully and at many different levels to what my clients tell me: in their language, tone of voice, and other non-verbal behavior. I am skilled at picking up emotional nuance, and hear the words between words and notes between notes. This gives my clients a unique experience of being deeply listened to, and heard, and also allows me to help them observe and think about things they might not have noticed before that may be contributing to the dissatisfaction that brought them to therapy. This often serves to ignite their curiosity about themselves, so that they can keep pursuing self-understanding throughout their lives.

What relationship exists between mental health and substance abuse?

Mental health and substance abuse issues are often intertwined. Some people use drugs or alcohol to cope with painful inner states, to feel better. Substances are an attempt to solve a problem, to deal with unmanageable inner experiences. However, the drugs and alcohol themselves can cause more emotional and actual problems and pain than they address, and often leave people worse off than when they started; not only do they impair the person’s ability to develop ways to cope with the original overwhelming emotional experiences, they then pile on problems that are consequences of the substance use itself. The starting point in psychotherapy is to understand why a person uses, what they are trying to accomplish or are having difficulty coping with, and how they might manage their emotional experience in a different way that is less self-destructive. The process in working with substance abuse issues is the same as that involved in approaching any mental health issue: we need to understand how a person got where they are, what it feels like to be them, and only then can you help them figure out where they want to go and how to get there. The journey is different for everyone.

Dr. Sharon R. Bass is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist in Oakland, California. For more information, please call (510) 419-0999.

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Dr. Sharon R. Bass
3223 Lakeshore Avenue
Oakland, CA 94610
Fernando Castrillon
Fernando Castrillon
Oakland, CA 94618

What types of services do you offer?

Psychotherapy, Psychoanalysis, Couples counseling, Consulting, Public Presentations

What issues do you specify treatment for?

From depression and anxiety to severe mental health challenges, including substance use issues.

What therapy modalities do you use in your practice?

Individual and family therapy.

When should one seek treatment?

Its not a matter of “should”, but one of decision.

Why should someone choose to come to your practice?

Because they are ready to speak as openly and fully as possible. My way of working emphasizes accessing material that usually goes unheard and unspoken.

What relationship exists between mental health and substance abuse? What services do you provide for someone suffering with either and/or both?

“Addiction” comes from the Latin for “lack of the word”. Something has not yet been spoken, and when it is spoken, things change. That is the aim of our work together. I have worked extensively with people suffering from both substance use issues and psychological suffering.

Dr. Fernando Castrillon is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist with a practice in Oakland, California. For more information on his services, please contact him at (510) 295-4711. 

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Fernando Castrillon
5332 College Avenue, Suite 100
Oakland, CA 94618
Heidi Yoder
Heidi Yoder
Oakland, CA 94612

What therapy approach(es) do you utilize? What issues do you specify treatment for?

I utilize quite a few different therapeutic approaches, making me Eclectic in style. Attachment, Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapies, CBT, Hakomi, Gottman, Gestalt, Object Relations, the twelve steps, meditation, visualization. But first and foremost, I am interested in using methods that resonate with the Client. I am very attentive and transparent and if I sense a mismatch, I will simply ask about the Client's comfort level or what types of things have worked for them in the past. If they are unsure then we experiment together and note what seems to be bringing the kinds of results that move the Client towards the growth we have discussed in their articulation of where they would like to be.

I specify treatment for any situation in which a Client has exhausted their own resources in trying to change a pattern, achieve growth or goals without success, navigate transition, or gain new perspective or comfort in an ongoing relationship.

MFT's in short treat relationship issues but that can mean almost anything as unexamined beliefs and poor self esteem can arise when a Client sets out to start a new business for example and then needs work on her/his relationship with self.

How does one know if therapy is right for them?

I am passionate about what I do and have worked with Client's from all age groups, ethnicity's, classes, genders, sexual orientations, religious and/or spiritual affiliations and it's hard for me to believe that there are people for whom Therapy won't work. But it is true that it works best with people who are capable of self reflection, a capacity for taking responsibility for their own behaviors, and have some level of motivation. Generally if one finds her/himself seeking out a Therapist, they are probably someone for whom Therapy will be an effective solution. It probably wouldn't occur to those folks for whom it wouldn't work. 

What can one expect to gain from therapy?

One of the things that my Clients comment on over and over is how much they appreciate feeling deeply cared for while consistently being gently asked about less skillful patterns or dynamics that aren't easy to discuss, but lead to the lasting and long term growth they desire. I want my Clients to get value out of every session because I understand how precious their time, money, and trust is. I also know that with addictions and pathological self abandonment, every step away from recovery that I don't catch or comment on, could be a crucial break in the bridge the Client is building to safer ground. I am not invested in being right, but I didn't take this job to be comfortable, so I would rather have a Client get angry at me and either be wrong or have them come back later and say, you know, I was thinking of __________(addictive behavior). There is a lot of laughter in my sessions, a lot of normalizing of behavior as being on the scale of human beingness, because there's no beating up on oneself allowed in my practice. But that shouldn't lead one to believe that there isn't serious work being done. Quite the opposite.

What relationship exists between mental health and substance abuse?

A book or five could be written on the connection between mental health and substance abuse, from the trauma/PTSD perspective, from the NeuroScience perspective, from the physiological perspective, there is just so much there to work with. But in my practice, we deal primarily with the first two. When someone comes to me either quitting or in early recovery, we focus first on shoring up the support around keeping that recovery going. I have worked with the steps for over twenty years and find them an ever fascinating, multi-faceted approach to freedom. I help Clients, if that's what they are using, see the steps from an entirely different perspective which helps them understand they are a gift, a life preserver and enhancer...plastic surgery for the soul (if it were perfect and had no side effects) haha. Once we have gotten that (at least acting as if) "the theme of the steps is the Joy of Living" then we can move on to "causes and conditions", so to speak.

Usually there is a reason the Client started on the addictive path. So often there is trauma to be dealt with. After using all the psychological tricks children have at their disposal, something stronger was still necessary and they took what they could to forget, ease the pain, detach, not have to face. As they grew older and were no longer in that situation...not only had the addiction taken over (this is where the neuroscience comes in and is especially interesting in addictions of behavior where behaving in a certain way causes the body to create the adrenaline rush, the cortisol bath, and the numbness that follows without having to add a single outside chemical to the body. And those that do add the outside chemicals become trapped in a situation where they have trouble feeling pleasure, happiness, even good when that substance is withdrawn), but now there was a lack of life skills that the Client was painfully aware of that needed to be avoided. Some of the lack of skills~self esteem, trust, having meaning translated, self soothing~ were part and parcel of the trauma itself. But then some of the lack of skills happened when the Client was missing in action during certain parts of her/his formative years due to the addiction. These are relational, social, financial, time management, and job related in nature. Even deeper are the skills related to fun, expecting good things, entitlement, and experiencing joy which is why this work tends to just come up by itself when we have finished setting up a good foundation for keeping their work for the "Joy of Living" in place. So there are many answers to that question, but this is the most relevant one to my practice.

Heidi Yoder is a marriage & family therapist based in San Francisco and Oakland, California. If you are interested in contacting Heidi about her service, please call (415) 578-0993.

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Heidi Yoder
2633 Telegraph Avenue Suite 215
Oakland, CA 94612
Jessica Levith
Jessica Levith
Oakland, CA 94602

What types of services do you offer?

Adult and young adult individual psychotherapy. Sex and Love Addiction recovery and 12-step counseling. Women’s Sex and Love Addiction process groups. Body Image and Self Injury counseling.

What issues do you specify treatment for?

Anxiety, Depression, Sex and Love Addiction, Self- Injurious Behavior, Life Transitions, Grief and Loss.

What therapy modalities do you use in your practice?

Narrative Therapy, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, Gestalt, Rogerian, and EMDR, and Harm Reduction/12-step

When should one seek treatment?

When someone is ready to take steps towards living a fuller life, a life they might not have ever thought possible.

Why should someone choose to come to your practice?

I meet my clients where they’re at in their recovery, providing unconditional, nonjudgmental support. I’m direct but genuine, and use humor whenever possible. What relationship exists between mental health and substance abuse? What services do you provide for someone suffering with either and/or both? Mental health issues are often times at the base of any addiction. Addressing underlying mental health issues tends to alleviate the need to numb out using drugs or alcohol. I provide an uncommon combo of harm-reduction and 12-step work. 12-step tends to be black and white, which can lead to shame and guilt over a relapse that may reinforce one’s need to use. Implementing Harm Reduction reduces this guilt and shame while building a client’s belief that recovery is attainable.

Jessica is a Registered Marriage and Family Therapist Intern with a practice in Oakland, California. For more information on her services, please contact her at (510) 883-3074. 

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Jessica Levith
3725 Coolidge Avenue
Oakland, CA 94602
John R. Edwards
John R. Edwards
Oakland, CA 94609

What therapy approach(es) do you utilize? What issues do you specify treatment for?

The therapeutic approaches that I utilize the most are based on the following theories:

1) Psychodynamic theory which basically says that our past especially our early childhood experiences have shaped who are today.  Examining these previous experiences and their impact on us helps us to understand how come we behave the way we do today. This understanding and awareness helps us to figure out alternatives to patterns and interactions that we may wish to change or do differently.

2) Cognitive behavioral theory:  The basic concept here is that the way we think about an issue or event determines what sort of actions we will engage in regarding the issue or event.  Problems arise when we have faulty thinking about an issue or event.  We over respond or under respond to an issue or event based on faulty thinking.  I find this approach to be helpful for persons with more recent stressors in their life.

3) Attachment theory:  The basic concept here is that all humans need to be connected or attached to a primary caregiver.  When our early childhood connections or attachments to a primary caregiver was problematic or insecure we can develop an array of problems relating to others.

How does one know if therapy is right for them?

Therapy can be utilized for a wide variety of issues.  It is important to distinguish between A) Is therapy right for you versus B) Are you seeing the right therapist or is the therapist a good fit for you.  People often confuse the two.  If you're seeing a therapist and you're not feeling helped it is important to discuss this with your therapist.  If you're still not feeling right about the fit with the therapist after you've discussed your concerns feel free to select another therapist.  We fire all sorts of people such as dentists, doctors, lawyers and you can fire a therapist as well.  While therapy is not always easy it needs to be helpful.  You may not always like what your therapist has to say but liking your therapist is quite important.  It is important that your find some process that helps you to process difficult feelings, make sound decisions and help you heal from emotional pain.

What can one expect to gain from therapy?

This depends on the person's goals.  Some people seek therapy to learn about themselves and the reasons they feel or behave certain ways.  Others seek help in making an important decision.  The one thing that you should expect is that your therapist helps you to figure out what is most likely best for your situation or problem.  You should see this in terms of increased coping skills and increased awareness of your situation or problem.  Your therapist should be professional, honest and be genuinely concerned about your well being.  Therapy  is not easy and requires full commitment from the client.

What is unique about you as a therapist?

Most people say that they don't feel like they are in "therapy" when they see me.  I am relaxed, professional, and I expect that clients who come to see me, will work at improving their situation or circumstances.  I believe people have the potential to grow and change with the right support.

What relationship exists between mental health and substance abuse?

The relationship between substance abuse and mental health is quite complex.  We know that many people use substances to try to cope with with mental health issues. However, the reverse is also quite real i.e. people who use substances frequently develop a mental health issue and sometimes quite severe issues.  At times it is truly challenging to figure out which came first the mental health issue or the substance use problem.  The important thing would be to get professional help.

John R. Edwards, LCSW provides counseling and psychotherapy in Oakland, California. For more information, please call (510) 213-9284 or visit http://www.westcoastpsychotherapy.com/

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John R. Edwards
2939 Summit St, Suite 203
Oakland, CA 94609
Ken (Kenichi) Takahashi
Ken (Kenichi) Takahashi
Oakland, CA

What types of services do you offer? What issues do you specify treatment for?

Therapy for individual (adults and children), Couple, family and group for children.

Specific issues I specialize in are : Trauma, PTSD, Addiction, Social phobia, Low self Esteem, ADHD, Anxiety, Autism, Domestic Abuse, Dual Diagnosis, Emotional Disturbance, Gambling, Internet Addiction, Relationship Issues, Alcohol Abuse. Asperger's Syndrome, Chronic Pain or Illness, Depression, Drug Abuse, Eating Disorders, Family Conflict, Grief, Learning Disabilities, Sexual Abuse, Substance Abuse, Psychosis, Mood Disorders, Panic Attack, Dissociation,

What therapy modalities do you use in your practices?

Talk therapy, EMDR, Motivational Interviewing, CBT, Somatic Experiencing (trauma resolution using Sympathetic and Parasympathetic nervous system), EFT (tapping meridian), and Pranic Healing.

When should one seek treatment?

Mondays, Fridays and Saturdays all day.

What relationship exists between mental health and substance abuse? What services do you provide for someone suffering with either and/or both?

Both can coexist or trigger each other. If you become anxious or over stressed about something, you want to calm down or you don't want to feel anything stressful. You start to seek for something that can easily  soothes you such as alcohol, other drugs, food, video games, and/or internet rather than healthy coping methods such as exercising, meditating, consulting with doctors, and so on. Drugs or alcohol use may suppress negative emotions or life issues to think about that forces you to lose opportunities to learn life skills or coping skills to overcome obstacles.

If you start to drink alcohol or to use drugs, you physically depend on  them in order to feel normal or function in daily life. You may become anxious or stressed without using drugs because your body cannot function well without them and you are obsessed to obtaining them all the time.  

I provide one on one counseling service using Motivational Interviewing and CBT : to rebuild your life structure, rebuild positive resources to regain confidence, rebuild social connections with sober people and communities, help you understand triggers of drugs, help you notice positive and negative consequences of drugs and alcohol, and reduce the level of trigger.

I may provide couple's counseling and/or family therapy if necessary because it is important for clients to be supported by their family members or their partner and their family members need to understand what substance abuse is and how they need to help the clients.

I provide an EMDR session to reduce the intensity of trauma if trauma triggers use of drugs and alcohol. EMDR accesses to the brain and re-balances both sides of the brain with bilateral movement which is eye movement or bilateral tapping on the laps. I worked on a client who used Speed because he became over anxious and over stressed due to the triggers of his childhood trauma. It took 10 sessions to reduce the intensity of his childhood trauma. He has become calm and does not get triggered by the similar triggers in his life anymore.

I use Somatic Experiencing created and developed by Peter Levine Ph.D. This helps you reduce the intensity of anxiety, Trauma, Panic Attacks, and dissociation. It helps regulate nervous system (Sympathetic and Parasympathetic Nervous System) within the normal range. Also, it helps separate emotions, thoughts and physical sensations from triggers that cause anxiety, trauma, and panic attacks that in turn make you use substance. 

I also offer a non touch energy healing called Pranic Healing. Prana means energy life force in each chakra and in the aura. It is relevant to acupuncture, but practitioners do not touch the client's body at all because their aura scrapes energy. This modality basically takes away negative energy of addiction out of the body and places positive energy life force into the chakra and the body. I have worked on a client who used Heroin and worked on him with Pranic Healing. He has got 2 jobs and his girlfriend. He relapsed once, but he got recovered after that. 

Ken (Kenichi) Takahashi is a Marriage Family Therapist, SEP (Somatic Experiencing Practitioner) and Pranic Healer (Non Touching Energy Healer) in Berkely, California. For more information, please call (707) 297-9077. Also, check out his second loaction in Oakland, California by calling (510) 601-1929 ext. 5

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Ken (Kenichi) Takahashi
Berkely
Oakland, CA
Larisa Blum
Larisa Blum
Oakland, CA 94610

What therapy approach(es) do you utilize? What issues do you specify treatment for?

I am a somatic therapist who focuses on relational, attachment and childhood trauma issues. I work with individuals and couples to address relationship ambivalence, co-dependence, anxiety, depression, major life transition, PTSD/trauma, shame/low self-esteem, poor communication and conflict, among other issues.  I help with building awareness of one’s thoughts, feelings and physical sensations to develop greater insight and to uncover new choices.

How does one know if therapy is right for them?

Therapy is right for anyone who is ready to make a change in his or her life and would like support in doing so.

What can one expect to gain from therapy?

In therapy, you will gain the strength and tools to make changes that have seemed daunting or impossible in the past. Starting with expanding your self-compassion and understanding, you will learn to listen to the parts of you that have previously only had a voice through unproductive or self-sabotaging channels. In somatic therapy, specifically, you will gain an increased awareness of your body and i's signals--information you need to make choices, and information that your best thinking typically ignores.

What is unique about you as a therapist?

As a therapist, my style is warm and direct.  While I am nurturing and supportive, I also do not sugarcoat things and am transparent about what I think. I support the development of trust and safety in our relationship, so that together we can explore and process what may be inaccessible or overwhelming to do alone.

What relationship exists between mental health and substance abuse?

Substance abuse is one way we attempt to soothe ourselves or escape intolerable feelings such as loneliness, shame, anger and so on. These feelings can arise from our present circumstances or may stem from what has happened in the past. When we find ways to allow ourselves to experience our pain--through support in multiple areas of our lives and the guidance of trusted people, such as therapists--we can shed our reliance and need for substances.

Larisa Blum, MA is a Marriage and Family Therapist Intern at Grateful Heart Holistic Therapy Center in Oakland, California. For more information, please call (510) 463-4619.

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Larisa Blum
445 Bellevue Avenue
Oakland, CA 94610
Lauren Gonzalez
Lauren Gonzalez
Oakland, CA 94618

What types of services do you offer? What issues do you specify treatment for?

I work primarily with borderline personality disorder and bi-polar I & II, as well as OCD, anxiety disorders, PTSD, depression and high emotional dysregulation and self-harm issues. I work with adults, adolescents, couples and families, in individual therapy and DBT skills training (groups and individual).

What therapy modalities do you use in your practices?

I am intensively trained in Dialectical Behavior Therapy, and work with a DBT team at the Oakland DBT and Mindfulness Center. While my work is largely cognitive behavioral and DBT-based, I work relationally, with mindfulness practice as my base. Likewise, I work psychodynamically, and use metaphor, myth, and imaginal explorations when it suits the therapy to do so. 3) When should one seek treatment? One knows when one is ready. The question is, is the person ready to answer that call? I believe very strongly that people are smart and intuitive, and know in a deeper sense when they need help. Often, invalidating environments interfere with our ability to get help when we need it because we doubt or dismiss (or hide, in shame) the physical, emotional, and mental cues that tell us something is off. Many of us are told at a young age that we shouldn't be sad when we're sad, or we shouldn't be angry when being so is congruent with the situation. This leads to shame about our emotions, and so we suffer in hiding. I think one should seek treatment the minute one thinks, "I can't do this anymore," or "This is too much, I'm overwhelmed," or, "I want to run away and hide." These instincts are adaptive--they are cues that something is off.

Why should someone choose to come to your practice?

If you are at the point where "something's got to give" is your motto, I want to work with you. If you like engaged, active, mindful and validating therapy that that looks at the balance between change versus acceptance, I can help you. If you find you spend more time and energy fighting reality than you do living life, I would like to explore the possibilities with you. If you don't know how you feel because you measure your feelings based on how others respond to you, we can do good work together. If you like leaving therapy with a modest amount of homework that will help you get the skills you learn in the therapy room into your daily life, we will work well together.

What relationship exists between mental health and substance abuse? What services do you provide for someone suffering with either and/or both?

I view substance use as an effort to solve a problem. It's effective short term, because substance use can temporarily ease the pain. But it leads to long term problems, some of which have dire consequences-the loss of relationships, jobs, health, money, and self-respect to name a few. Even the loss of life. The connection between substance use and mental health is one of communication, in my view. Substance use is a signal that something is off, and that the substance is satisfying an unmet need for safety, peace, satisfaction, happiness, security, detachment, ease, and confidence. While the use of a substance might provide short term relief in these areas, over time, use deteriorates our ability to fill those needs through other, more effective means. In our therapy, I will work with an individual to identify urges that lead to particular behaviors that include substance use, and then we will work to introduce new possibilities that offer a greater sense of satisfaction, and a mastery of one's life. Most important to me is that individuals I work with know that I recognize how difficult it is to seek help, and to undo all the negative, invalidating messaging that leads us to believe we are broken, and do not deserve to lead satisfying, full lives.

Lauren is a Psychotherapist and Marriage and Family Therapist Intern in Oakland, California. For more information on her services please contact her at (415) 685-3894. 

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Lauren Gonzalez
5767 Broadway, Suite 101
Oakland, CA 94618
Lisa Danylchuk
Lisa Danylchuk
Oakland, CA 94610

What types of services do you offer? What issues do you specify treatment for?

I offer psychotherapy via Skype, phone and in-person appointments.  I specialize in treating trauma and the effects that can come of it - challenges with mood, attention, relationships, self-regulation, functioning at work, as well as typical PTSD symptoms like avoidance, intrusive thoughts & memories, and hypervigilance.  I treat PTSD as well as complex, developmental trauma.

What therapy modalities do you use in your practice?

I draw from multiple modalities, depending on the needs of the client, which can include EMDR, hypnosis, biofeedback (EEG neurofeedback), somatic psychotherapy, yoga, and more.

When should one seek treatment?

For complex trauma as soon as early as possible, when the client feels ready to address the impacts of early childhood trauma and the compound effects.  For PTSD earlier is also better, but a client has to want to be in therapy and cannot force healing. The longer a client waits the longer they will likely experience the negative impacts of the traumatic experience(s).

What relationship exists between mental health and substance abuse? What services do you provide for someone suffering with either and/or both?

It is common for someone who has endured traumatic experiences or who struggles with other mental health issues to seek to self-medicate with substances (drugs, alcohol, food, sex, technology).  These are coping skills, but are not helpful for long term healing. I provide clients with an opportunity to heal from the root cause of the symptoms and to find healthier, more adaptive coping mechanisms to deal with their challenges and experiences.

Lisa Danylchuk is a Marriage & Family Therapist in Oakland, California. For more information regarding Lisa’s services, please call (510) 214-3520. 

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Lisa Danylchuk
445 Bellevue Ave, Suite 104C
Oakland, CA 94610
Tina Kopko
Tina Kopko
Oakland, CA 94609

What types of services do you offer? What issues do you specify treatment for?

I offer in-person 50-minute weekly counseling sessions (or more often) in support of a person's path to healing. I will support your existing recovery program, whether it's 12-Step based or Non-12-Step based, by helping you develop a toolkit for managing overwhelming feelings and old, unsupportive messages that hijack your thoughts. Once we've established a safe and trusting relationship and determined that my style is helpful, I may be able to provide phone sessions if you live in California.

I also treat clients dealing with depression, anxiety, grief and loss, poor self-esteem, life transitions and unhealthy relationships.

What therapy modalities do you use in your practices?

My approach to therapy is based on the beliefs that 1) you are the expert on your experience - I will listen closely to what you tell me about the problems you have in life, and believe your perspective is real; 2) that we are partners in your healing; 3) that there is an array of factors that promote illness as well as healing; 4) that change is always possible; and 5) the expression of deep feelings related to past wounds can be profoundly transformative. I use strategies from Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy, Somatic Therapy, Holistic Therapy and Gestalt Therapy to help you find useful solutions and reframe your perspective.

When should one seek treatment?

When should you seek treatment? If you are asking that question, perhaps the time is now. If you're wanting healing, it's not too late to get support. There are people who care and who will help you no matter what stage you're at in your recovery. In my private practice office, I ask you to only come in sober, so that we can address the real issues that substances have been helping you cover up and manage.

What relationship exists between mental health and substance abuse? What services do you provide for someone suffering with either and/or both?

The relationship between mental health and substance abuse can be very linked for some people. We often turn to either a substance or activity to manage overwhelming thoughts and feelings, which is how it can turn into an addiction. We NEED the external thing to manage life. Depending on how long these coping mechanisms have been in place, they may feel impossible to give up. I believe that a combination of a group recovery program, medical care and individual, personalized therapy can be extremely effective toward long-term sobriety, health and happiness.

Tina Kopko is a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist and Authenticity Coach in Oakland, CA. For more information, please call (510) 813-9811.

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Tina Kopko
6536 Telegraph Avenue, Suite C-103
Oakland, CA 94609
Zemiera Singer
Zemiera Singer
Oakland, CA

What types of services do you offer? What issues do you specify treatment for?

I offer therapy to individuals, couples and families on a variety of issues including anxiety and depression as a result of chronic pain or illness, substance misuse  and behavioral addictions. I also offer help for teens and adults with eating disorders, difficulty managing anger,  and grieving the loss of a loved one. I offer an LGBTQ and alternative lifestyle friendly practice. I see clients in-person as well as via Skype and Google Chat.

What therapy modalities do you use in your practices?

My goal is to give clients the tools they need to overcome the problems they face. I use a variety of modalities including  mindfulness techniques, somatic awareness, narrative therapy,  expressive arts and plain old talk therapy. My practice is grounded in learning from  narrative/postmodern therapy as well as cutting edge research on brain development and the neuropsychology of  attachment.

When should one seek treatment?

When we find that our lives feeling stuck, trapped or without options it is good to seek out support. Therapy can provide a fresh perspective on the problems that seem to have taken over and help us re-create the stories that we want to live.

What relationship exists between mental health and substance abuse? What services do you provide for someone suffering with either and/or both?

For many people, substance misuse and behavioral addictions are an attempt to cope with emotional pain, past trauma or just the difficulties of daily life. As we  learn to become more comfortable with our experience  we can often let go the behaviors and habits that no longer serve us. When working with clients with issues of addiction I offer a non-judgmental, friendly environment to work toward their own vision of recovery.

Zemeira Singer, MFT is a Marriage & Family Therapist with offices in Berkeley and Oakland, California. For more information, please call (510) 463-4809.

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Zemiera Singer Featured
Zemiera Singer

Oakland, CA
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