Home For The Holidays…And In Treatment?

By April Wilson Smith, MPH, Lisa Chiodo, PhD, & Amanda Wilson, MD


Do you feel like you need treatment, but you don’t want to be away from home for the holidays?  


We get it.  Louis Pompeo, Vice-President of Business Development at NorthStar Care, spent every major holiday in treatment long before he found his way to helping others full time.  Louis told us, “Nothing therapeutic can happen in inpatient over the holidays.  You’re missing your family, and everyone else is too.  It’s like a wave of sadness that surrounds the place.”  


It may seem like the holidays are the worst time to start treatment, but if you need treatment, you do not have to wait.  With NorthStar Care, you can get the treatment you need, now, and be at home during the holidays so you can celebrate your success with your family and friends! 


Care your way, in your home.  


NorthStar Care’s telehealth alcohol treatment program works around your life and your schedule.  We know that for many, it is impossible to leave your family, work, and school obligations.  It is also not realistic to think you will leave your life, get control of your alcohol use in just 30 days, and then after, everything will be fine.  When you sign up with NorthStar Care, you receive all the tools you need to make the journey to wellness from the privacy, safety, and comfort of your own home. 


NorthStar Care’s unique model provides a year of care that happens entirely in your own home, at your convenience. There is no inpatient stay and transportation is not required.  All appointments take place via telehealth.  This medical program treats the physical aspects of Alcohol Use Disorder that most treatment programs ignore. Examples include nutrient therapy to restore your body and brain to health and medications to control cravings and deal with anxiety and depression.  Our medication and nutrient program help you feel better in two weeks. We work with each patient to create a truly personalized treatment plan. 


Your NorthStar Care Providers and Peer Guides meet with you when it works for you, after work, on the weekends, whenever.  Virtual Reality Peer Support meetings are available throughout the week, including evenings and weekends. In these groups you can meet other people, in treatment like you, in a completely anonymous venue.  No one will know who you are, where you’re from, or anything other than what you choose to tell them.   


If you’re having trouble filling your time without alcohol, VR Peer Support groups provide an excellent opportunity to escape to a fun virtual environment, share your story, and solidify your goals and plans, then you can jump right back into your regular life.  There’s no need to tell anyone where you were, or why.  


Support during the holidays, and beyond!  


The holidays can be a challenging time for those who are changing their relationship with alcohol, and that’s another reason why now is a good time to start treatment with NorthStar Care.  Instead of going it alone, you will have support from a care team of five qualified professionals.  We don’t just send you stock text messages – we are real human beings on the phone, on Zoom or in VR!   


During the holidays, and all the time, your care team will help you plan how to survive the events that make changing your drinking difficult.  In additional to medical care, we provide you with tools for socializing, handling family commitments, navigating work parties, happy hours, and spending time alone on the holidays.  The NorthStar Care Clinical team monitors your medication and nutrient therapy plan to ensure speedy healing of both the body and brain, helping you achieve your alcohol use goals.    


What if I want to have a few drinks over the holidays?  


Everyone who receives treatment at NorthStar Care has different goals, and an individual plan.  What if you’d like to abstain from alcohol eventually, but you’d still like to have a few drinks during the holidays?  That’s fine!  We can work with you to make a safety plan, avoid negative consequences, and still enjoy your holiday. 


Is your family pressuring you?  


If your family has drawn a line, and wants you to go to treatment, NorthStar Care can help.  Our treatment is based on science, with real evidence of real results.  Your care team includes a Physician, Advanced Practice Clinician, Nurse, Navigator, and two Peer Guides (along with a partridge in a pear tree because hey, it’s the holidays!). This team provides you with five times the professional support you would get in an inpatient rehab, and for a much lower price for a year of care than you would pay for a month of rehab.  How is that possible?  Because at NorthStar Care, you’re not paying to be locked up!  Our team can work with your family to understand that you do not need to be behind locked doors, separated from those you love and who love you over the holidays to be safe.  We remotely monitor our patients’ Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) for safety and to help you adhere to your own goals.   


Thanksgiving at Home or the “Jailhouse Special?”  


Louis remembers his two Thanksgivings in treatment:  “The treatment center did their best to create a good meal for Thanksgiving, but it ended up seeming like the Jailhouse Special!”  Spending Thanksgiving, or any of the holidays, with strangers whose only commonality is that they have an issue with substances sounds like a miserable punishment.  At NorthStar Care, we believe that people who struggle with Alcohol Use Disorder need medical care, nutritional support, and peer support from others who have been there.  We don’t believe in punishment and we want to support you to live your best life, starting with this holiday season!

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