WNBC Channel 4 News award winner journalist Chris Glorioso interviews Cali Estes!


Type in Xanax in the search bar.  You will see the 4 minute segment on the 11 o’clock news!

A rise in prescription drug abuse involving Xanax and similar anti-anxiety pills in recent years has prompted some doctors in the U.S. to rethink the frequency with which they dole out the prescription.

Between 2004 and 2009, New York City emergency room visits involving Xanax and other anti-anxiety prescription drugs known as benzodiazepines increased more than 50 percent. That’s up from 38 out of 100,000 New Yorkers in 2004 to 59 out of 100,000 New Yorkers.

Data from the New York City Department of Health also show benzodiazepines were tied to more than 30 percent of all the city’s overdose deaths in 2009, or 3.3 out of 10.9.  Nearly all of those overdoses involved multiple drugs, of which benzodiazepine was just one.

Xanax is the most popular anti-anxiety drug in the benzodiazepine family. In 2010, Xanax was America’s 11th-most prescribed pill, according to the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics.

In Louisville, Ky., psychiatrists at the Seven Counties Services network of mental health clinics took the unusual step of halting all Xanax prescriptions. The self-imposed ban has now been in effect for a year.

Dr. Scott Hedges says benzodiazepines are fast-acting when it comes to remedying acute panic attacks, but he says they are not meant to be long-term treatments. Instead, he focuses on more traditional behavioral therapies.

“The problem is, in terms of longer term treatment, there are really much better treatments that have better outcomes than the use of that short-term medication,” Hedges said.

Some Xanax abusers say their panic attacks and anxiety seem more intense after long-term use of the drug.

“Rob,” a recovering Xanax abuser who did not want to reveal his identity, said shortly after he started taking the pill he noticed the effects of benzodiazepine were wearing off too quickly and he had to increase his dosage.

“It doesn’t take long before that doesn’t do anything for you and you have to double it or triple it,” he said

Like many Xanax addicts, “Rob” says he also abused other illegal drugs at the same time. He often took Xanax pills to alleviate panic symptoms associated with his attempts to quit heroin and other narcotics.

Dr. Jeff Rabrich, who directs the Emergency Medicine Department at St. Luke’s Roosevelt Hospital in Manhattan, said he often sees the negative effects of illegal narcotics exacerbated by benzodiazepines.

“The Xanax potentially makes it a much worse overdose. It could turn a relatively mild overdose into something that could be fatal,” said Rabrich.

According to practice guidelines from the American Psychiatric Association, doctors should avoid prescribing alprazolam — the generic name for Xanax — for patients who have a history of alcohol or drug abuse.

The APA practice guidelines go on to list several reasons for caution when prescribing Xanax to recovering addicts:

“A history of abuse of other substances, both licit and illicit, is associated with a higher prevalence of benzodiazepine abuse, a greater euphoric response to benzodiazepines, and a higher rate of unauthorized use of alprazolam during treatment for panic disorder.”

Pfizer, the manufacturer of Xanax, said in a statement that it does not condone the abuse of its products and says prescribing clinicians must be aware of the risks of the medication, which is included in the package insert and communicated to patients.

“When prescribed and taken as indicated, Xanax has a well-established safety profile and is an important treatment option that has benefited millions of patients,” Pfizer said.

In disclosures on the Pfizer Physician Prescription Information sheet, or PPI, doctors are warned of the possibility of physical and psychological dependence associated with Xanax.

The PPI goes on to say:

“Some patients have experienced considerable difficulty in tapering and discontinuing from Xanax, especially those receiving higher doses for extended periods. Addiction-prone individuals should be under careful surveillance when receiving Xanax.”

Cali Estes, a drug counselor who is now helping “Rob” recover from his addictions, said she adamantly believes Xanax and similar drugs are overprescribed.

“I don’t believe they take the time with the patients to figure out what the problems are,” Estes said. “A doctor who is running short on time and nurses and probably isn’t paid as much as he or she used to be finds it easier to say, ‘OK this person has a problem, here’s your script, have a nice day, where’s my next patient.’”

Dr. Karl Rickels, an expert on benzodiazepines at University of Pennsylvania’s Department of Psychology, said Xanax and similar drugs need to be better understood by the physicians who prescribe them.

“My advice is not to prescribe benzodiazepine if you know that someone has been abusing something else and if you learn this later than you should start right away tapering the patient off benzodiazepine,” Rickels said.

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The Addictions Coach, Cali Estes will be on the 11 pm news, WNBC channel 4 in Manhattan MONDAY NIGHT MAY 14th, 2012!!!


Please watch as Chris Glorioso interviews Cali Estes on the serious problem of Xanax and drug addiction.

TANOREXICA????? The new addictions???

Tanning Mom” Case Spotlights Tanning Bed Dangers for Minors

The bizarre case of “Tanning Mom” Patricia Krentcil, a New Jersey parent who allegedly put her 5-year-old daughter in a tanning booth where she sustained burns, comes only weeks after the Mayo Clinic announced that over the last 40 years melanoma, the most dangerous form of skin cancer, has increased eightfold for young women. The study attributes the dramatic rise to an increase in the use of indoor tanning beds.

Related: “Tanning Mom”: Does New Jersey Woman Suffer from Tanorexia?

“People who use tanning indoor tanning beds frequently are 74 percent more likely to develop melanoma,” says lead investigator, Jerry Brewer, MD. “The results of this study emphasize the importance of active interventions to decrease risk factors for skin cancer, and in particular, to continue to alert young women that indoor tanning has carcinogenic effects that increase the risk of melanoma.” Tanning beds are also associated with squamous cell carcinoma.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) reports that the Mayo Clinic’s findings reflect what many dermatologists are seeing in their practices. “People know they should wear sunscreen and should not get burned, but there is a disconnect between that and tanning bed use,” says Dr. Kavita Mariwalla, director of Mohs and Dermatological Surgery at Beth Israel Hospital. “Tans are also being glamorized on reality shows like “Jersey Shore.”

Related: Snooki Calls “Too Tan Mom” “Crazy” for Taking Daughter Tanning

Prom season and the beginning of summer cause a spike in teens’ visits to tanning salons, USA Today reports. “It’s really hard to fight against fashion,” Douglas Horan, a dermatologist with Affinity Medical Group told the newspaper. “If they’re getting ready for their wedding or their prom or the beach, they don’t want to be the one with really pale skin. It’s really hard to fight against that tide.”

The carcinogenic effects of UV rays are cumulative which makes tanning beds particularly dangerous for young people. The Food and Drug administration (FDA) estimates that people who begin using indoor tanning before the age of 35 increase their melanoma risk by 75%. Tanning beds emit mainly UVA rays which penetrate deep into the skin where they damage connective tissue and suppress the immune system. “Indoor tanning is like smoking for your skin,” Dr. Doris Day, a dermatologist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City told USA Today. “It’s the single worst thing you can do in terms of skin cancer and premature aging.” She added that she supports an FDA ban on tanning beds.

Although UV radiation from tanning beds is classified as a human carcinogen by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the World Health Organization, only 36 states regulate their use by minors (though most states ban their use by kids under 14). California is the only state with an all out ban for those under the age of 18. The American Academy of Pediatrics supports a nationwide law prohibiting people under the age of 18 from using tanning beds.

The Mayo Clinic offers these basic guidelines for reducing your risk of melanoma and other forms of skin cancer: Avoid the sun during the middle of the day. Wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen year-round. Wear protective clothing. Avoid tanning beds. Alert your physician if you notice any changes to moles, birthmarks or freckles.

Everyone needs a Happy Place. Where is yours?

A place to think and be serene.

Robert Wagner’s daughter arrested for heroin and cocaine

Courtney Wagner, the only daughter of the late Natalie Wood and actor Robert Wagner, has been arrested for cocaine and heroin possession after police responded to a domestic dispute at her home that involved gunfire.


The 38-year-old former jewelry designer — who was just 7 years old when her famous mother drowned on a weekend trip to Catalina Island in California — was taken into custody last Sunday at her Malibu home when officers responded to a call that a woman at the residence was screaming and there was gunfire, reports TMZ. Courtney was arrested on suspicion of felony drug possession for reportedly having cocaine and heroin. The other person involved, an unidentified male, was also arrested for negligent discharge of a firearm.

She later posted $10,000 bail and was released.

[Related: Was There a Fight the Night Natalie Wood Died?]

Although her parents and stepmother, Jill St. John, all have ties to showbiz, Courtney opted not to follow in their acting footsteps. Instead, she created a high-end jewelry line called Wagner and Ko, with her childhood best friend Anita Ko. The line, which launched in 2001, developed a huge following with celebrities from Cameron Diaz to Gwyneth Paltrow before they shut down the business in 2006. Neither woman discussed why they dissolved the partnership, but Ko’s bio on her website doesn’t mention Courtney by name saying only that Ko “started Wagner & Ko with ‘a friend.'” It’s unclear what Courtney has been doing professionally since then.

As far as her love life, Courtney dated actor Stephen Dorff for several years and they appeared together on the cover of the May 1993 issue of Interview. She later had a relationship with Max LeRoy, whose family owned New York’s iconic Tavern on the Green. They were said to have been engaged when LeRoy died in a 2005 motorcycle accident at the age of 30. Despite the fact she opted out of showbiz, her celebrity friends included Nicole Richie, who she has been photographed with at several events through the years.

Courtney’s famous parents were married twice—first from 1957 to 1962 then again in 1972 after Wood’s brief marriage to Richard Gregson ended. Courtney was born during their second shot at marriage, in 1974, and was still a young child when her mother drowned under mysterious circumstances in 1981 while aboard her boat with Wagner and her “Brainstorm” co-star Christopher Walken. The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department announced last November than “new evidence” about Wood’s death had prompted them to reopen the case. However, in January it was closed again after nothing materialized.

[Related: Authorities Say No New Evidence In Natalie Wood Case]

“I don’t remember very much about my mother,” Courtney, who also has two half sisters, said during an interview in 2004. “I do remember her laugh and the way she [smelled], and I remember her hands — things like that that made me feel close to her.”

In the same interview, she was asked if she had difficultly being the daughter of two such iconic figures. “A lot of people ask me if there’s any pressure living up to the Wagner name, but I don’t think so,” she said. “The only pressure I would ever feel is, I would always want my family to be proud of me. I just want my dad to feel he raised a solid person to be compassionate and care about the things that he cared about.”

Are all addicts the same?

Drug treatment centers treat addicts all the same. Same groups, same beliefs..but the question is are all addicts REALY the same?  Is it appropriate for a 45 year old female alcoholic to be treated the same as a 20 yr old male pill popper?  Think about that for a small second..if we liken addiction to a disease would it not be different diseases?  And how can we account for the fact that some addicts quit while others die from their intake? Most treatment centers dump all addicts in the same groups, same sessions, and when they fail tell them it didn’t work ‘because you didn’t work the program”.  Why do we follow such an antiquated  philosophy that one size fits all?

What about an individualized approach that targets the client’s specific needs and goals?

At the Addictions Coach,  we tailor each session to fit the individual needs of each client. We believe that each person is as unique as their addiction and one size really DOES NOT fit all.

So how do we do it?  Call us and see!



Los Angeles Coast

Nothing cures the daily stress then some yoga on the beach.

The Addictions Coach Adds Fitness, Yoga and Nutrition

The Addictions Coach expands services to include Yoga Therapy, Fitness and Nutrition.

Miami, Florida April 14, 2012

The Addictions Coach, which specializes in drug, alcohol and food addictions, has expanded the team’s services to include fitness,Yoga, Pilates and nutrition to assist addicts in fully understanding their addiction and begin decreasing negative behaviors.  Celebrities have long hired sober coaches, therapists, personal trainers,Yoga teachers and nutritionists to work as a team in assisting them to deal with their addiction. The Addiction Coach has combined all those services under one package and can offer the addict a full gamut of services to assist them in reaching their true potential.

By implementing Yoga, fitness and nutrition, Cali Estes, owner of The Addictions Coach, can target all the facets of addiction.  Yoga can calm the nervous system,   assist in alleviating Post-Acute Withdraw symptoms, teach the addict patience, meditation and deep breathing and provide a an outlet for positive social and leisure activities. The Addictions Coach targets individuals that not only want to tackle their addiction but also learn a new healthy way of living and they have developed an extensive program that  teaches individuals how  to access the feel good chemicals in their brain by using Yoga, nutrition and fitness.

“Fitness and nutrition are an integral part of combatting addiction,” Estes said. “If an addict learns how to appreciate his or her body and how drugs and poor food choices affect mood, that in turn will affect cortisol levels that cause stress. Stress is a major factor in addiction. We can treat the entire process by adding fitness, Yoga and nutrition in the therapy regimen.”

At the Addictions Coach, Cali Estes has been utilizing Yoga Therapy since 1999 to assist people of all ages, sizes and addiction levels to reach their potential and understand addition through this medium. Her multidimensional approach focuses on the underlying cause of the addiction and she approaches each client in a unique manner. Unlike traditional rehabilitation centers that convince the addict that they have a disease that is incurable and they must attend meetings, recite prayers and follow steps, Cali tailors her program to fit the client. By realizing that each client is unique and their pattern of addiction is unique with a root cause, Cali is able to address the addiction at the core and assist the addict in making the necessary changes and positive steps in their life.

“I have worked with CEO’s, actors, actresses and even the stay at home mom that uses the occasional Xanax to ‘take the edge off’ and I have implemented a wonderful Yoga and fitness program to accompany the traditional talk therapy that most psychotherapists and counselors rely on,” Estes said.

Actors like Mischa Barton, Charlie Sheen and Lindsay Lohan are using sober coaches to get clean. They also employ Yoga teachers, Fitness Instructions and Food Therapists to complete the process. At the Addictions Coach, Cali Estes combines services to offer a full approach that is well rounded and grounded for the individual.

Cali is more than a ‘sober coach’. She has a background in clinical and personality psychology, addictions and forensics. She can get to the root of the addiction quickly and work with the client in building a safe environment in which to make the changes necessary to live a productive lifestyle.  Clients in addiction feel powerless, helpless and hopeless and need answers and ways to change their lives. Sometimes family and friends think that everyone should be able to have ‘just one drink’ at a function, but for some clients that is not what happens. That one drink turns them into an unmanageable individual that their family and friends cannot deal with. Taking a pill to ‘get through the day’ or ‘take the edge off’ eventually leads to a full blown addiction with the addict personality. Cali can address all these issues with both the family and the client and assist them in making the changes necessary to be happy and healthy.

“I have been teaching Yoga and fitness since 1999 and I have taught internationally,” Estes said. “So many thirty day rehabs do not even offer a fitness or nutrition component and when the addict finishes their thirty days, they do not have the true tools to make it in the world. I bridge that gap.”

Cali has consulted in 2 countries and frequently flies between South Florida, New York and Los Angeles to work with her clients. She has clients in the music industry, acting/film, modeling, CEO’s and frequent high stress jobs clients. She is available on an individual basis for clients, more intensive or for speaking engagements. She has accompanied clients to high risk situations like weddings, worked ‘on set’ of movie and film productions, worked directly with pro athletes, sat in on business meetings, been ‘on tour’ with musicians and even will work directly in the home of the client for a more intensive ‘rehab’ setting.

“I am available for individual sessions, long day sessions from 8-12 hours, weekly sessions on as a 30 day stay,” Cali said.  “I handle drug, alcohol, food and assorted other addictions at the root cause and assist the client in realizing that a life free from addiction is possible.”

The Addictions Coach is based out of Miami Florida but services clients in all of South Florida, New York City and Los Angeles.


Cali Estes

Addictions with Food

Eating or not eating can be an addiction

“addictions with food”