Welcome to our Q&A with the Sovereign Health Group. Sovereign Health Group is an innovative, California-based behavioral healthcare organization providing treatment programs for substance abuse, and who are currently implementing Nutrition Assisted Detox (NAD) in their programs.
Today we are speaking with the Director of Business Development & Marketing at Sovereign Health Group, covering their methods and programs for addiction treatment. We’ll talk about the importance of an individual approach in treatment and the role education plays in decreasing the chances of relapse. We’ll review NAD and how it can help people going through withdrawal. Then, we welcome your comments or questions in the section at the end.
ADDICTION BLOG: Although your mission is to provide treatment with an individualistic approach, Sovereign Health is also known for innovating nutrition assisted detox (NAD). What is NAD?
SOVEREIGN HEALTH: Nutrition assisted detox is a treatment protocol that addresses discomfort during withdrawal, reduces cravings and speeds up the detox process. Basically, NAD results in increased speed of detox and reduced pain.
It consists of nutritional substances administered intravenously and orally, by a licensed nurse under medical supervision. The intravenous infusion bathes the brain in soothing nutrients including amino acids and vitamins, blocking the discomfort of withdrawal and jump-starting the process of healing neurotransmitter and cognitive function in the brain.
ADDICTION BLOG: How can it be applied to addiction treatment? What are its costs and benefits?
SOVEREIGN HEALTH: Application of NAD results in decreased intensity of withdrawal symptoms and discomfort. The detox period is shorter and recovered state at the end as opposed to the standard detox social model.
- Costs: NAD is usually an out of pocket expense and is not covered by insurance.
- Benefits: NAD really can help patients who are on fast acting drugs of abuse. We have observed a 50-80% decrease in withdrawal symptoms with no other detox aids, some other benzo spot treatment as needed. But NAD is not as effective for people who have long-term high dose abuse of benzos.
We have observed a 50 to 80 percent decrease in withdrawal symptoms without any other detox aids; there may be some other benzo spot treatment as needed.
ADDICTION BLOG: Are there any risks of nutrition assisted detox? Any negative or adverse side effects reported?
SOVEREIGN HEALTH: I’m not aware of any adverse side effects that have been reported. Signing up for the treatment does require a commitment to get to our location, but can’t ever say indefinitely if we can get people to participate in NAD detox or if they are physically capable of receiving the intravenous insertion and therapy. It’s only applicable to detox and addiction-related concerns. It’s not appropriate for mental health disorders.
ADDICTION BLOG: Has nutrition assisted detox been through any clinical trials or a university study?
SOVEREIGN HEALTH: Use of NAD therapy is evidence-based and has been shown to increase the success rate for long-term recovery when followed with traditional forms of therapy for substance abuse.
ADDICTION BLOG: What can people who choose to detox on their own do in order to optimize their nutritional balance during withdrawal?
SOVEREIGN HEALTH: The patient should eat a healthy and well-balanced diet and follow standard measures of good self care. The patient should drink plenty of fluids and plan for some supportive treatment for after detox so they aren’t going through this expensive detox process without any follow up care.
ADDICTION BLOG: No two people are the same, so it makes sense that people have different needs and ways of coping with their problems. It makes sense to offer services tailor-made for the unique issues of each patient. What kind of research do you perform so you can find the best approach for each patient? Further, does your staff use any particular methods and examinations for tailoring specific treatment to each individual?
SOVEREIGN HEALTH: It’s a completely standardized protocol. NAD is not necessarily tailored to individuals, it’s our treatment programs that are customized for each patient. In terms of customization, there is a variation of the amount of detox given and the time it is administered over. We administer NAD detox over a 10-day treatment routine.
ADDICTION BLOG: Sovereign’s philosophy for treating addiction is based off of the bio-psycho-social model of treatment for addictive behavior. Could you explain for our readers what the principles and practices are behind this model?
SOVEREIGN HEALTH: Mental health disorders are conceptualized into factors into a biological factors, psychological factors and social factors. It’s a whole person approach to conceptualizing the problems. The model is primarily talked about from a standard diagnosis. Our treatment philosophy is how the problem is identified by also treating all aspects biologically, psychologically and socially.
Biological education is what you can do to take care of your self – brain wellness in particular, nutrition and medication. Physician for physical health and focusing on psychological assessment and evaluation to understand cognitive functioning with offering neurofeedback. Psychological – individual psycho therapy, group therapy based on evidence-based treatment. Social – weekend family groups, intensive family program twice a month, social support networks integrated into our phase system.
ADDICTION BLOG: Sovereign Health also specializes in dual diagnosis cases. What do you think makes your approach different and unique in treating these conditions?
SOVEREIGN HEALTH: A lot of treatment centers say they can treat with dual diagnosis but don’t have specialized knowledge or staff who can manage dual diagnosis with high knowledge of the treatment components. We have that specialization. As a company, we understand with high acute mental health components with their dual diagnosis also need treatment and have a hard time finding a place that can manage their symptoms.
ADDICTION BLOG: What we find really interesting about Sovereign Health is Sovereign Academy, which aims to help patients get their lives back on track. Can you share some details about the Academy for our readers? What kind of education are you offering?
SOVEREIGN HEALTH: That is still in development and we will have more to announce in the near future.
ADDICTION BLOG: Would you say that education and aftercare are having high impact on decreasing the chances of relapse in patients? In your experience, what do you think is most helpful for recovered addicts to stay sober?
SOVEREIGN HEALTH: We know from long-term studies regarding specific treatment programs that continuing care is essential to recovery. Our specific programs are designed for intensive oversight with support and continuing care. What’s most important is having a network to rely on in times of need and having a future focus that they are working toward with support in place to help them move forward in achieving that goal. Staying connected with a network that holds them accountable in maintaining sobriety.
ADDICTION BLOG: What other services and activities are provided in your facilities in addition to the treatment programs?
SOVEREIGN HEALTH: We offer yoga, equine therapy, the gym, offer brain maps and neurofeedback. We also have expertise for comprehensive assessments for psychological testing and offer case managers for the patients.
ADDICTION BLOG: Is there anything else you would like to share with Addiction Blog readers?
SOVEREIGN HEALTH: We invite the readers to learn more about Sovereign Health Group addiction, dual diagnosis and mental health treatment programs and detox services for adults and adolescents at www.sovhealth.com. In addition, we showcase patient reviews on the Sovereign Health Natural Assisted Detox (NAD) here at this link: NAD patient review.