Meet Dr Brooke Buccola: PACE Recovery Center Celebrating National Recovery Month

Celebrating National Recovery Month

September is National Recovery Month and now in its 24th year it has evolved beautifully to reach out and bring all whose lives are touched by recovery to be honored. If you visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) National Recovery Month’s website you can learn all about National Recovery Month. Here is a quick historical overview:

“Celebrated during the month of September, Recovery Month began in 1989 as TreatmentWorks! Month, which honored the work of the treatment and recovery professionals in the field. The observance evolved to National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month (Recovery Month) in 1998, when the observance expanded to include celebrating the accomplishment of individuals in recovery from substance use disorders. The observance evolved once again in 2011 to National Recovery Month (Recovery Month) to include all aspects of behavioral health.”

Today PACE Recovery Center would like to honor all of our treatment and recovery professionals and take a few minutes to introduce our readers to PACE Recovery Center’s Clinical Director Dr. Brooke Buccola, PsyD, LMFT.

Meet Dr. Brooke Buccola

Dr. Brooke Buccola

Dr. Buccola joined PACE Recovery Center in the role of Clinical Director after a number of years working in the field of addiction and recovery. Dr. Buccola is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist specializing in the treatment of chemical and behavioral addictions. She completed her Psy.D and Masters Degree at Alliant International University of Irvine, California and received her Bachelors Degree in Psychology from California State University, Long Beach where she graduated with honors.

Dr. Buccola has had the privilege of working with many treatment centers throughout Orange County, and has created and implemented many aspects of their clinical programming throughout the years. With an eclectic approach to therapy, Dr. Buccola gravitates toward a post-modern theory with aims at empowering the individual to reclaim his or her life from addiction.

Previous to entering the addiction and recovery field, Dr. Buccola worked with victims of domestic violence at the Women’s Transitional Living Center. At WTLC she worked with both women, their children, ran education and process groups, and facilitated the Personal Empowerment Program classes for court mandated victims of Domestic Violence.

Currently, Dr. Buccola maintains a successful private practice in Newport Beach, California helping individuals, couples, and families with an array of presenting problems.

Join the voices for recovery together on pathways to wellness. 

The Importance of Exercise and Physical Activity in the Therapy of Substance Use Disorders

At PACE we address all components of the disease of addiction and underlying behavioral health issues. We believe it is vitally important to help client to make long term life style modification that will reduce the desire to use substance, reduce withdrawal symptoms, and reduce cravings. Recent studies have demonstrated the therapeutic effects of exercise combined with interventions in mental disorders, especially depression, anxiety, and substance abuse related disorders.

Exercise has been found to have a positive impact by producing neurochemical alterations. This is very important for those in treatment due to the fact that “dysfunctions of dopaminergic, glutamatergic, and opioidergic neurotransmission have been linked to craving and relapse” (Zschucke, Heinz, & Strohle, 2012, p. 16) in those who suffer from substance abuse disorders. It has also been found that exercise has a positive impact on mood regulation. This is important due to the fact that negative mood, stress, anxiety, and depression increase the risk of relapse.

At PACE clients work out daily and we have found that as clients begin to engage in physical activity they begin to develop positive social support networks that are not centered in substance abusing activities. It is our goals to assist our clients in developing adaptive behavioral coping strategies that foster emotional regulation which is integral for a life of sobriety.

Please refer to the following article for more in depth information on the positive impact of physical exercise and the treatment of substance use disorders.

Zschucke, E., Heinz, A., & Strohle, A. (2012). Exercise and physical activity in the therapy of substance abuse. The ScientificWorld Journal, 1-19. doi:10.1100/2012/901741


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