Increased Precautions We're Taking in Response to COVID-19

LAST UPDATED ON 12/17/2020

As updates on the impact of the coronavirus continue to be released, we want to take a moment to inform you of the heightened preventative measures we have put in place at Sierra by the Sea to keep our patients, their families, and our employees safe. All efforts are guided by and in adherence to the recommendations distributed by the CDC.

Please note that for the safety of our patients, their families, and our staff, on-site visitation is no longer allowed at Sierra by the Sea.

  • This restriction has been implemented in compliance with updated corporate and state regulations to further reduce the risks associated with COVID-19.
  • Options for telehealth visitation are continuously evaluated so that our patients can remain connected to their loved ones.
  • Alternate methods of communication for other services may be offered when deemed clinically appropriate.

For specific information regarding these changes and limitations, please contact us directly.

CDC updates are consistently monitored to ensure that all guidance followed is based on the latest information released.

  • All staff has received infection prevention and control training.
  • Thorough disinfection and hygiene guidance has been provided.
  • Patient care supplies such as masks and hand sanitizer are being monitored and utilized.
  • Temperature and symptom screening protocols are in place for all patients and staff.
  • Social distancing strategies have been implemented to ensure that patients and staff maintain proper distance from one another at all times.
  • Cleaning service contracts have been reviewed for additional support.
  • Personal protective equipment items are routinely checked to ensure proper and secure storage.
  • CDC informational posters are on display to provide important reminders on proper infection prevention procedures.
  • We are in communication with our local health department to receive important community-specific updates.

The safety of our patients, their families, and our employees is our top priority, and we will remain steadfast in our efforts to reduce any risk associated with COVID-19.

The CDC has provided a list of easy tips that can help prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and then immediately dispose of the tissue.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces that are frequently touched.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care.

For detailed information on COVID-19, please visit

Why is Teenage Drug Abuse on the Rise?

Our staff writer looks into the rise in teenage drug abuse. Partying with innocent drugs like cigarettes, alcohol, and marijuana is usually the gateway to more dangerous substances like OxyContin, heroin, LSD, and cocaine.

The teenage years are ones of change, learning, discovery, and for many, experimentation.

Some may try drugs such as marijuana and alcohol, but what may originally be viewed as harmless dabbling could lead to dependency and the use of harder drugs, such as cocaine and heroin.

The case for perceiving drinking alcohol and smoking marijuana as a gateway to abusing harder and more dangerous drugs is legitimate. Experimenting with marijuana, ecstasy, and even cigarettes is the usual starting point for teens. While some teens may never move on to more dangerous drugs like OxyContin, hallucinogens, or cocaine, others quickly become hooked on getting high and trying to find that elusive better feeling.

Teenage Drug Use Today

Here are the startling numbers concerning teenage drug use today:

  • According to the Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Prevent and Reduce Underage Drinking, the “peak years” of alcohol experimentation are in seventh and eighth grade, which are when students are between 12 and 14
  • In a survey conducted by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, 38.9% of eight graders in the US reported to having tried alcohol. 32.1% admitted to drinking within a year. 15.9% drank within the past month of the survey
  • In the same survey, 28.8% of 11th graders and 43.1% of 12th grade students reported that they had alcohol within the past 30 days of the poll
  • A 2007 Connecticut School Health Survey found that 26.2% of the state’s high school students participated in binge drinking at least one time within the 30 days before the survey

In an article in the New Canaan News, according to Ginger Katz, who launched the non-profit agency Courage to Speak Foundation, which seeks to educate parents and their teens about substance abuse, it takes 10 years for an adult who is 30 years to be chronically addicted to alcohol, while it takes a teenager who is 15 less than 15 months to reach the same stage of alcoholism. Because a teenager’s body is still developing and are not fully developed until they are 24, they can become much more quickly addicted to drugs.

…it takes 10 years for an adult who is 30 years to be chronically addicted to alcohol, while it takes a teenager who is 15 less than 15 months to reach the same stage of alcoholism.

Why Teenagers Start to Abuse Drugs

Katz feels that the danger to teens is greater than ever, due to the increased purity, availability, and strength of today’s drugs. She had a 20-year old son who died of an overdose of heroin. He began by experimenting with marijuana his sophomore year of high school.

The sense of entitlement and feeling of invincibility by some teenagers contribute to their risk of drug use. Some may drink simply because they do not feel that they fit in. After they start drinking, they develop a more uninhibited attitude towards the use of stronger drugs, like ecstasy, LSD, magic mushrooms, heroin, and pain killers.

The numbers are backing up that assertion, as teenage prescription drug use is on the rise. Teens have relatively easy access to these drugs, such as OxyContin and Vicodin, as they could be found in the medicine cabinets of many homes or they could have friends who may have been prescribed them.

Adderall is also a popular drug often illegally abused by teenagers, as it allows them increased alertness and concentration while studying. Some may never discontinue usage of the drug throughout their lives, as they feel it gives them the competitive edge over their classmates, and later, their co-workers. This same dependency could lead to abuse of other drugs down the line (like cocaine and amphetamine), which they feel could provide them similar benefits of “better living through chemistry.” Use of these pills easily leads to other forms of narcotics, such as heroin, especially since it is being marketed by dealers as a drug that can be snorted.

We Accept Insurance
The following are some of the providers with whom we work regularly
  • Cigna
  • Optum
  • United Behavioral Health
  • and many more...

Recovering from substance use disorders is a challenging journey that feels more doable in an environment that tends to each individual’s complex needs and strengths. Our goal is to foster a treatment experience that is built on compassion, hope, and caring, and fueled by excellence in the provision of evidence-based and trauma-informed care.

– Michelle Beaudoin, MA, MFA, NCC, CADC-II
Marks of Quality Care
These accreditations are an official recognition of our dedication to providing treatment that exceeds the standards and best practices of quality care.
  • American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM)
  • California Consortium of Addiction Programs and Professionals (CCAPP)
  • Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF)