Frequently Asked Questions

Below you will find some information about services at Addiction Services of Thames Valley. These are common questions that we are asked and the answers we offer. We hope that you find the information helpful. You will also find some activities and information about what you can do while you are waiting.

Q: What can I do while I am waiting?

A: There are some things that you can do to make the most of this waiting period.

Browse through to see the information this web site offers to see what information is here to help you while you’re waiting.

We hope to be able to offer you an appointment soon. Email us if you have questions about waiting or need other assistance.

Sometimes callers are quite sure what they want and or need to do when they call to make an appointment. We know that they are very disappointed to hear that they have to wait. When you know what you want to do it is possible to start on your goals before you come in. You can:

  1. Find out about support groups like Alcoholics Anonymous at: www.alcoholics-anonymous.org
  2. Find out about support groups like Narcotics Anonymous at: www.wsoinc.com
  3. Find out about virtual supports online at: www.supportnetstudios.com
  4. Make an appointment to talk to your doctor.
  5. Call a friend or family member to talk about your goals.
  6. If you have support at work through Employee Assistance Programming, you can call or email them.
  7. Check out the resources at the library, your favourite bookstore or from friends.
  8. See below for some printable goal sheets to write on.
  9. Email us at intake@adstv.on.ca for telephone support.

Download “Goal / Tip Sheets”

Decisional Balancing  – You are now starting a treatment program that wants YOU to make the DECISIONS and take the lead. We will help you along the WAY but it is up to you to CHART your own course and stick to your RESOLUTIONS. Download PDF.

Coping With Boredom – Many people who use drugs and alcohol are concerned that when they stop using they won’t have any fun or relaxation in their lives. Boredom is often described as a trigger to use substances. Download PDF.

Healthy Breathing – By the time most of us are adults our breathing has become constricted. Through life’s stresses, shallow and erratic breathing can become a habit. Download PDF.

Journaling – What is journaling? Journaling is a way to keep an on-going record of your life. In recovery, journaling can be used to keep an on-going record of your progress. Download PDF.

Refusing Drugs & Alcohol – When you quit using drugs and alcohol, one of the highest risk situations you may experience is being offered a drink or urged to use a drug. Just saying no requires some practice and in many cases is not enough. Download PDF.

Rewards w/ Take Home Tool – Recognize yourself? Using alcohol/other drugs is often associated with rewards. Now that you are abstaining, it is VERY important that you develop a reward system that does not include alcohol/other drugs. Download PDF.

The DESC Model For Assertive Communication – This is a communication formula which can be useful in dealing with conflict and confrontational situations. Use it as a guide and fit it to your own style of communicating. Download PDF.

Daily Monitoring Substance Form – This helpful form includes “Alcohol Use: Total # of drinks, Did you use drugs today?, Situations related to Primary substance use or urges, Thought and feelings related to primary substance use or urges, and more ..”. Download PDF.

Weighing The Pros And Cons Of Change – One of the first steps toward successfully changing your drug use is to reach a clear decision that you want to change. In this exercise, you are asked to think about the good and not-so-good things about quitting drinking/drug use versus continuing to drink/drug use. Download PDF.

Change Questionnaire – What is the change you are considering? Examples: I want to make this change. I could make this change. There are good reasons for me to make this change. I have to make this change .. etc .. Download PDF.

Readiness Ruler – With this helpful aid, you circle the number (from 0-10) on each of the rulers that best fits with how you are feeling right now. Download PDF.

Extended Readiness Ruler .. Similar to the above aid “Readiness Ruler”. However, you now circle the number (from 0-10) that indicates how ready you are to make a change (quit or cut down) in your use of each of the drugs shown. Download PDF.
You can ask yourself: If you are not certain about your goals, this is a time for you to start to think about why you want to make changes. This is a time to think about what changes you might want to make.

  1. Do I want to quit using all substances?
  2. Do I want to quit using some substances but not all?
  3. Do I want to reduce my use?
  4. Do I want to learn about safer drug or alcohol use?
  5. Do I just want to ask someone some questions?

Remember there are no wrong reasons to want to change. It is okay to change alcohol or drug use a little bit or a lot. It’s also okay to say that you don’t want to change right now but you’d like some information for when you do want to.

You are welcome at ADSTV no matter what your decisions are and you can come back again if the timing is not good for you right now.

If you think you want some information about changing your use of substances, think about the following questions:

  1. How is my use of substances affecting my life?
  2. How are things changing for me?
  3. What has changed about me?
  4. Is anyone else concerned about my use?
  5. What have they been saying?
  6. Am I hurting anyone by using substances?
  7. If I were to change my use of substances, can I think of anything that might be better?
  8. How is my health?
  9. How am I doing financially? Am I spending too much money?
  10. Have my other habits changed because I am using substances?
  11. How have they changed?
  12. What have I tried in the past and did it help?

If you would like to print the questions above so that you can write down your thoughts click here

A common screening tool that is used to see if there’s cause for concern is called the CAGE – AID Questionnaire. It asks four questions about alcohol and drug use:

  1. (C) Have you ever tried to cut down your consumption of alcohol or drugs?
  2. (A) Do you get angry or annoyed if others suggest that you should cut down or quit?
  3. (G) Do you ever feel guilty about your use?
  4. (E) Have you ever had an eye-opener? (a drink or drug later to help with the withdrawal symptoms or hangover).

When you ask yourself the CAGE-AID questions you can think about your answers and your reaction to the questions. The four questions can help you think about what your goals are.

Another question to ask is “Does it take more (of the drug or alcohol) than it used to get the same effect?” if you answer “yes” to this you may be experiencing what is called “tolerance”. Tolerance develops when you use a substance like alcohol or a drug and your get used to the effect and so you can use more of it.

Check out our links page for other supports and sources of information on the internet.

Q: What do I do if I want to complain about Waiting?

A:  if you are concerned about the waiting period please call 519 6733666  ext 226 to speak to the Executive Director. You can also email lsibley@adstv.on.ca.

Q: What should I do about “using” or “gambling” while I wait?

In some cases you can see your doctor or go to a walk-in clinic to ask for help, there may be medication that can help. Your doctor can offer support and suggestions to help you.

You can go to the Withdrawal Management Centre at: www.centreofhope.ca or call them at (519) 432-7241 for more information. There, you can start the process of detoxification before you come in to see us or you can wait until you are seeing a counsellor and start later. You can speak to your doctor about your withdrawal needs too. If you are feeling suicidal, go to your doctor, your local emergency department or urgent care centre in the county where you live.

We do support harm reduction and if you cannot stop using because of the withdrawal symptoms you may need to continue using.

If you are using injection drugs or are using piercing equipment click here for information about where to get clean needles and exchange your own.

Q: Is there a waiting list in all the offices?

A: We offer service in many local communities outside of London. Some offices do not have long wait times so it is important to check to see if the program you are interested in has a waiting period. If there is a waiting period we will offer some suggestions on things to do while you wait.

Q: Why is there a waiting list?

A: Unfortunately, in some of our programs we do not have enough staff to meet with all the people who call for help. It is just a matter of not enough supply of staff to help the people who request assistance. We have seven different programs and some programs just need more staff to keep up with the requests for help. For a list of our programs, please go to the Home page and click on the program names.

Q: What was the average waiting period for ADSTV in 2011-12?

A: The waiting period for service depends on the program at ADSTV. There are no waiting periods for Fresh Start, London CAReS, Problem Gambling or Back on Track.
There is no wait for intake for substance abuse services and persons can wait up to three months for the next individual appointment after with their assigned counsellor. While the person is waiting they can come to group four mornings a week to gain support and attend education sessions that will assist them with changing behaviours.

Q: How many people were assessed in 2008-2009?

A: Wait lists vary from county to county and program to program. We offer suggestions on what to do while you are waiting and there are helpful activities and suggestions on this website. Click here for more information.

Q: How many programs are there at ADSTV to serve Thames Valley?
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