Psychotherapy in Addiction Treatment

Addiction is a disease so insidious that a detox or a simple medical treatment is not nearly enough to attack it. At California Prime we believe in implementing several levels of treatment that work together so that we can counter-attack addiction at not only physical, but also mental and psychical states. It is this multi pronged approach that has proven to be effective for our clients with co-occurring disorders.

Detoxing and medical assisted treatments are the first step to treating addiction at the level of the body. However it is widely accepted now that drug addiction has deeper roots than merely an addiction to substance. Patients suffering from this disease typically resort to alcohol and drugs to numb the pain that they experience due to their past trauma, family history, or other stressful triggers.This is where psychotherapy comes in.

Why is Psychotherapy Necessary

Relapse rate is nearly 85% for substance abuse and addiction if the root psychological problem is not addressed. After treatment, when an individual encounters a psychological trigger or is influenced by their social setting, if they do not have coping skills they will have strong cravings to return to using and/or abusing substances.

Each individual responds to social and psychological events differently, and their responses to different methods of treatment are also varied. With clients who are suffering from co-occurring disorders, the severity may be at different levels between their substance use disorder and psychiatric disorder. Our therapists are experienced in configuring individual treatment plans that are tailored to each patient, and some form of psychotherapy is an essential part of our treatment plans that are aimed at reducing relapses.

Psychotherapy at California Prime

We offer psychotherapy at individual and group levels, as well as part of our inpatient and outpatient programs. We incorporate one or more types of psychotherapy into our individualized treatment plans. Here are a few of our offerings:

Cognitive-Behavioral TherapyDialectical Behavioral TherapyPsychodynamic Therapy
Psychoeducational TherapyHumanistic TherapyBehavior Therapy

Benefits of Psychotherapy in Addiction Recovery

Psychotherapy is used to heal several areas of a patient’s life, in addition to their addiction issues. Here are some major benefits that we see in our clients.

Addressing and Managing Trauma

Past experiences of physical, sexual or emotional violence are the most common contributors to addiction issues. An individual who does not have the coping skills to manage their trauma will likely turn to drugs, alcohol, or other substances to numb their pain. We use psychotherapy to provide coping techniques to our clients so they can learn the skills to manage their pain.

Overcoming Fear and Gaining Confidence

Many individuals try to escape from their fears and anxieties by using drugs and alcohol to avoid them. Psychotherapy from our experienced counselors will help them face their fears and learn to overcome them as they gain confidence.

Reducing Stress and Anxiety

Trauma triggers and memories can induce severe stress and anxiety in addiction patients. A psychotherapist can help analyze and reprocess past events and trauma triggers so that patients can learn coping techniques to address their stress.

Understanding addictive behavior is a necessary part of drug and alcohol addiction treatments. Recovery and reducing relapses are only possible if the addictive behaviors and their triggers are addressed at psychological levels.

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Alyssa Mueller


Alyssa Mueller is an Associate Clinical Social Worker. She holds a Master of Social Work with a concentration in Community Mental Health from California State University of Fullerton as well as a Bachelors of Arts in Communication Studies with an emphasis on intercultural and interpersonal communication from California State University of Long Beach. Compassion, empowerment and unconditional positive regard are the foundations of her clinical practice, Alyssa has a passion for helping others and her priority is to hold space for clients to feel heard, to feel safe and to find fulfillment and self-love on their recovery journey. Alyssa specializes in addiction treatment, self-esteem building, mindfulness practices, grief and loss, trauma informed care, and self-compassion as well as individual and family therapy. She has extensive experience working with high risk populations in various clinical settings such as partial hospitalization, intensive outpatient care, outpatient treatment, schools, and community outreach. Alyssa uses a client centered and holistic approach to address the client as a whole person in order to help them to feel empowered and facilitate their confidence and independence.

Charee Marquez

LMFT - Clinical Director

Charee has worked in the recovery field for 10 years.Charee is dedicated to supporting and inspiring clients to live a healthy lifestyle filled with meaning and purpose.Charee has extensive clinical experience within the recovery field in both inpatient and outpatient settings.She specializes in working with individuals and families affected by the disease of addiction however she has also clinical experience in assisting individuals,couples and families in working through a variety of concerns,including: depression,anxiety,relationship & communication issues,substance abuse,grief & loss,trauma, life transitions, and many others.Charee works with each client to specialize their treatment plan with what works best for the client in a compassionate and effective way. She emphasizes the strength of every individual client and fosters an environment of personal growth and internal healing from a mind, body and spiritual approach.Charee received her Bachelor of Arts from Seton Hall University, Majoring in Psychology and Minoring in Women and Gender Studies, in addition to her Masters in Marriage and Family Therapy from the University of Southern California.

Stephen Carmel

Founder & CEO

I began my journey to recovery back in 2011 when I moved to California from New York.Along wiht my recovery and beginning a new way of life,I began to develop a heart for others struffling with sobriety.My journey to California was filled with many trials and lessons learned, but most of all, personal growht.I truly believe i would not have found success if I didn’t come to California.I started CPR as a way to work with people in recovery on a daily basis and it evolved into something much more beautiful. I have also come to realize that my own personal happiness and recovery depends on being involved in the lives of people in recovery. Helping others recover is a cornerstone of many 12 step programs, as it is here. Giving back to those still suffering, is the only way not to lose what you have gained. It is the paradox that we live by every day.