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Gateway's Lake Villa Treatment Center Improves Treatment Approach and Broadens Community Connections

August 12, 2016
Chicago, IL

In an effort to provide individuals the most cutting edge addiction treatment methods, experts at Gateway Lake Villa are consistently improving their approach to addiction treatment and broadening their connections within the community.

"We are lucky in Lake Villa to have a caring and creative team of staff who continuously work to improve the clients' treatment experience. Recently we have added more yoga groups, aromatherapy using essential oils, and pet therapy. Staff shared their own experience with these therapies, as worked to link with community resources to introduce new modalities. We believe treatment should be a healing process that addresses the mind, body and spirit." said Karen Wolownik Albert, Executive Director, Gateway Lake Villa."

Here's a Quick Look at What's New at Gateway Lake Villa:


By taking advantage of the "A Way Out" program, participants and their loved ones are given the opportunity for help and treatment to end the destructive cycle that substance abuse or addiction has caused in their lives.

"Gateway Lake Villa is a very proud partner in the 'A Way Out' Program. Lake County is so fortunate to have a collaborative network of agencies and individuals who are committed to helping persons struggling with substance use disorders. Since June 1, more than 20 persons have entered this program through a participating police station and have been placed in a treatment setting same day. The A Way Out program will be a national model for other counties to follow," said Wolownik Albert.

The program includes the participation of local police departments serving as the starting point in the recovery process. Participants WILL NOT be criminally charged and there is no need to fear arrest or prosecution for seeing participation in this program.


Pet therapy is currently available on a weekly basis at Gateway Lake Villa – and Gateway's Lake Villa treatment center is currently in the process of searching for a resident therapy dog!

This is addition to our treatment approach is based on the many physical and psychological benefits seen in individuals when they interact with animals. These include lowered blood pressure and heart rate, increased beta-endorphin levels (a hormone produced by the brain and nervous system that reduces pain), decreased stress levels, reduced feelings of anger, hostility, tension and anxiety, improved social functioning, and increased feelings of empowerment, trust, patience and self-esteem. Animal therapy is looked upon as both learning and healing experience.


Yoga for substance use disorder recovery recognizes the need the need to connect the body with the mind. Often people abuse their bodies because they do not feel completely comfortable in their skin. Yoga aims to change that perception.

Deep breathing techniques and the constant reminder to remain in the present moment help those recovering from addiction learn to sit quietly and calm the body and mind. Many times, people abuse substance seeking a certain experience or an escape from whatever is making them unhappy. Yoga is a positive alternative to generate a change in consciousness that empowers people to access a peaceful, restorative state that integrates the mind and body.

At Gateway Lake Villa, yoga sessions incorporate a variety of essential oils that have been shown in clinical studies to have positive effects on the mind and the body. These can help to support emotional balance, a sense of calm, stress relief, and feelings of well-being.

About Gateway Alcohol & Drug Treatment

Since 1968 our goal has been straightforward: to help clients get their life back on track and achieve a life of sobriety, free from drug use and symptoms of mental illness, that is productive, socially responsible, and healthy. Gateway Foundation is the largest nonprofit treatment provider in the country that specializes in the treatment of substance use disorders, providing treatment for men, women, adolescents, and clients diagnosed with co-occurring mental health disorders.

Gateway's Community Division has treatment centers located throughout Illinois, including Carbondale, Chicago, Lake County, Fox Valley, Springfield, and the St. Louis Metro East area. These centers offer residential and outpatient treatment services for adults, teens, and adolescents accessed through insurance, state funding, and self-pay.

Gateway's professional clinicians help thousands of individuals successfully complete treatment by developing a personalized plan that treats the underlying causes of substance abuse—not just addiction to drugs or alcohol.

Learn more about insurance coverage, treatment options, or Gateway's confidential consultation at or call 877-505-HOPE (4673).

Reporters and Editors, for more information, please call Jason Stutz at 312-663-1130.