The Washton Group offers individually-tailored treatment delivered in a discreet private office setting. We are a specialized private practice, not a public addiction clinic or program. We offer flexible sophisticated treatment for men and women with busy schedules and demanding careers as well as for adolescents, young adults, and their parents. We are a group of highly trained and experienced psychologists, not addiction counselors or paraprofessionals.
People who are grappling with substance use and/or other problems seek our professional help for many reasons. Some of them come to us after struggling with substance use and/or other mental health issues on their own. Some are here because they have not done well in previous therapy or in traditional “one size fits all” treatment programs or AA meetings. Others come here because want psychotherapy that addresses both the behavioral and psychological issues that contribute to their problems. Still others are here to find out whether their drinking or drug use is really a problem and what, if anything, they might do about it. All are here because they receive respectful feedback and personalized care that is tailored to meet their individual needs.
We work with people in all stages of readiness for change. We work with people in the early stages of acknowledging that a problem exists (an important first step) and considering the possibility of getting professional help as well as those who are committed to change and ready to take definitive action. We recognize that feeling ambivalent or unsure about making changes is a natural part of the process of coming to grips with an any type of problem including substance use. Our approach is motivational, not confrontational. We will help you to explore the costs and benefits of changing your behavior and work with you to formulate a realistic plan for moving forward that feels right to you.
We help our clients set realistic and achievable goals that they choose for themselves. We do not impose or mandate treatment goals recognizing that this is more likely to inhibit rather than motivate change. Our professional role as psychologists is not to impose demands on our clients, but to enhance their ability to work toward their self-selected goals. We help them to explore the risks and benefits of different treatment goals (e.g., abstinence, moderation, harm reduction) and to make informed choices recognizing that change is often incremental (stepwise) and that goals can be revised along the way as needed.
We offer multiple treatment options and individualized paths for change, not one path for everyone. Flexibility and choice are the cornerstones of our therapeutic approach. We recognize that people with alcohol and drug problems are not all alike and that no single treatment approach works best for everyone. The fact is, there are many different pathways to change and using a combination of different strategies often yields the best results. Some people do best with individual treatment; others do best with group therapy, while still others do best with a combination of both individual and group therapy. We formulate individualized not boilerplate treatment plans for clients based on what they need and what appears to make the most sense.
We offer a unique Alcohol Moderation Program for non-alcoholics. The vast majority of people who drink “too much” are not alcoholics and many of these “problem drinkers” can learn how to moderate their drinking within safer levels rather than give up alcohol for good. That’s what the research shows. Our Alcohol Moderation Program is for people who are concerned about their alcohol use and want to learn how to reduce their drinking to avoid negative consequences and improve their overall health.
As psychologists, we are able to treat substance abuse and a wide range of other behavioral health issues. We have the professional training and expertise to diagnose and treat not only substance use, but also a wide range of other issues that complicate change and reduce life satisfaction including depression, anxiety, trauma, self-esteem and relationship problems- whether or not these issues are associated with substance use. In addition to behaviorally focused interventions, we provide individual psychotherapy to address more complex emotional and psychological issues. When supplemental medication is needed to alleviate psychiatric symptoms, we collaborate with psychiatrists in the local community who can provide the needed services.
We provide scientifically-supported treatments. As clinicians and researchers, we are committed to providing the most effective and efficient research-supported treatments currently available. While traditional substance abuse treatment programs (based almost exclusively on the 12-step disease model of Alcoholics Anonymous) have historically yielded low success rates, several innovative treatments developed over the past two decades have accumulated an impressive track record of positive results. These approaches include: (a) motivation enhancement strategies that seek to engage clients and enhance their motivation and readiness to change: (b) cognitive-behavioral strategies that teach coping, emotional regulation, and relapse prevention skills; and, (c) modified psychodynamic techniques that seek to identify and resolve underlying emotional issues that drive substance use and complicate change. In addition to producing favorable outcomes, these techniques (especially motivational approaches) are often associated with high levels of patient acceptance and satisfaction.