"We must be the change we want to see in the world." -- Gandhi

Dr. Staci Emerson
Dr. Staci Emerson
7080 Hollywood Blvd.
Suite 502
Los Angeles, CA 90028

2900 Bristol Street
Suite A207
Costa Mesa, CA 92626

(310) 225-5220


Addiction Disorders

If you struggle with an addictive disorder and are considering treatment to help you stop your habit, I want you to know that you can recover completely. You don’t need to spend a lifetime hurting yourself and no matter how "under-the-spell" of a substance you think you are, you can break your addiction and live free for the rest of your life. You just need to know how.

Substance abuse treatment is the fastest growing area of medicine in the United States for an important reason – addicts relapse. The relapse rate for most rehab and recovery centers is about 75 percent. No wonder it’s a great field to get into for medical professionals. There is a practical guarantee of return "customers". I disagree with this formulation of addiction. I think we are all vulnerable to addiction when several key human experiences take place:

  1. A person experiences another form of mental illness, such as depression, which triggers his/her intuition to utilize substances or other addictive behaviors that will, in the short run, remedy the pain.
  2. A person has learned to avoid their own psychological pain and/or existential awakenings through utilizing material objects, substances, or other people to create an alternative emotional experience.
  3. A person learns to ease physical pain through utilizing material objects, substances or other people.

Having received years of formalized training in substance abuse treatment in VA hospitals, private inpatient hospitals, and out-patient day programs, I have witnessed many well-intentioned professionals simply fail to help patients solidify their recovery for one important reason – they formulate addiction as a disease and therefore expect a person to degenerate and relapse over a lifetime.

I’ve spent years working with and studying individuals who struggle with addictions, including substances, eating disorders, and other compulsive disorders, such as gambling, shopping, sexual and relationship addiction. I don’t think of addictions as disease and I don’t think the problem with addiction is a behavioral habit gone awry. As much as the behavioral habit seems to take center stage in most recovery treatments, the behavioral habit is merely a symptom of a more significant and deeper problem.

I help people, through talk therapy, writing, physical activity, hypnosis and other customized approaches, to uncover and address the root causes to their addictions. When the root causes become conscious and a person is willing to find healthy remedies to his/her human experience, the need to the addictive substance or behavior becomes increasingly obsolete. In addition, I think teaching people to look within themselves to find the power to heal and to experience life through empowerment and joy is key to long-term recovery from all addictions.

310.225.5220  •   DrEmerson@Yahoo.com