Tag Archives: overdose

How Long Does It Take To Get Into a Detox Center in Florida?

Recovery is a process that takes place in several stages. The most challenging stages are at the beginning of the process, and each stages becomes easier. Detox is the first stage in the process, and it is the most challenging stage.

Withdrawal refers to the physical pain and sickness you will feel as your body is acclimating itself to function without drugs and/or alcohol for the first time in a while.  You should always go through withdrawal, especially alcohol withdrawal, under the supervision of medical professionals because of the risks that are associated with it. Going through withdrawal under the supervision of medical professionals and other addiction counselors is typically done in a detox center.

There are several different types of detox programs.

  • Inpatient
  • Outpatient
  • Three-Day Programs
  • Five-Day Programs
  • Seven-Day Programs

Many Americans who have recovered from addiction have gone to Florida because of the state’s ideal healing environment. If you plan on going to Florida to start your recovery, your first stop will most likely be a detox center. The detox center may in the same facility as your rehabilitation facility or it may be a separate facility.

The Length of Time it Takes to Be Admitted to a Detox Center in Florida

If you are willing to be admitted to a detox center in Florida, you have overcome the first hurdle in the recovery processes. At this point, it is important for you be admitted into a detox center as soon as possible to avoid second guessing yourself or any other complications that may prevent you from going to detox. Because Florida is the recovery capital of the country, it is well-experienced in helping individuals achieve successful addiction recovery; therefore, the detox centers and rehab centers understand the importance of you getting into a detox center as soon as possible.

Most detox centers can admit you the same day as you call. It is almost definite that you will admitted the same day if you are under certain circumstances such as

  • Having had an Overdose
  • Experiencing Psychiatric Issues
  • Experiencing Some other Medical Emergency Related to Drug Use
  • Have a Prolonged History of a Severe Addiction
  • Your Family is Concerned that You Will Change Your Mind if You are Forced to Wait Several days.

If same-day admittance is not possible by the detox center you have reached out to, it is most likely due to that center not having a bed for you. Since detox center programs are typically no longer than a week, you should be able to get into the detox center within several days. However, you should call around to several detox centers because there is bound to be a center that can admit you the same day. If you are waiting to get into a rehab center that has a detox program within in their center, you may have to wait up to three weeks. Community drug treatment programs have the longest waits because you have to wait for social services to confirm a place for you and approve the funding for your stay. The longer wait times of rehab centers and community drug programs are why individual detox centers are strongly recommended. Though recovery is a challenging journey, it possesses rich rewards for all who travel it. If you are sick and tired of being sick and tired, call our detox center today to start your journey on the road to recovery. Call 800-737-0933

What I Wish I Knew Before Using Heroin The First Time

No matter how you started using heroin, it doesn’t take long for you to become hooked on the drug. But once you’ve experienced the high that comes with heroin use, you want more. You’ll get hooked before you know it if you try it once.

The High has its Problems

Heroin is associated with morphine and has a chemical structure similar to endorphins. Endorphins help the body feel happy and relieve stress and pain. When used, heroin changes an alteration in mood, consciousness, and perception. When heroin enters the brain, it is converted into morphine, which binds itself to opioid receptors and produces an intense feeling of pleasure. It’s a feeling you’ll want again and again. Before you know it, you’re hooked. Next, the withdrawal symptoms start if you don’t use heroin for several hours.

Withdrawal symptoms start very soon (eight hours) after heroin use and may include:

  • Drug cravings
  • Stomach cramps
  • Moodiness
  • A runny nose and perspiration
  • Moodiness
  • Restlessness
  • DT’s
  • Diarrhea
  • Spasms in muscles
  • Fever and chills
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Increased heart rate and blood pressure

As you continue to use heroin, your body’s ability to make endorphins stops. So the only way you can feel healthy and pain-free is by using heroin. Psychological issues also occur when you are no longer using heroin. These nasty issues can begin as early as 10 hours after your last use of the drug and may increase in intensity the longer you go without the drug. You didn’t know that your brain, your health, and your life would be permanently altered by heroin. You wish someone would have let you know what you were getting into before your first hit.

You may think it’s too late to do anything about your problems, but you are wrong. We have counselors ready and waiting to help you get off heroin safely. Detoxing alone may be hazardous to your health, and is unpleasant. But you can get off drugs with some professional help from the experts who have assisted others in getting drug-free. You can have your life, health, and sanity back.

Now that you realize that heroin destroys lives, it’s time to get off heroin and beat your addiction. We want to help you in getting off heroin for good. Contact us at 800-737-0933 for more information and start your new, drug-free life now.

New Synthetic Opioid “Pink” is Tied to Recent Fatalities

The Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences has issued a warning about a new synthetic opioid. The drug has been detected in the system of three Houston people who have died recently. It is called “Pink,” “Pinky” or even “U4.”

The drug is a white powder that can be pressed into a pill form. It isn’t packaged in any type of unusual manner. Houston authorities aren’t the first law enforcement officials to encounter Pink; police in Park City, Utah, became aware of it when they were investigating the overdose deaths of two teenagers earlier in 2016.

Fatal Intoxication when Mixed with Other Substances

The chief toxicologist at the Harris County Institute for Forensic Sciences, Teresa Gray, explained that Pink is in the same class of drugs as hydrocodone, heroin and morphine. She said that it produces a feeling of euphoria among users, but can cause the person who takes it to stop breathing if the dosage is high enough. Gray said that users mix the Pink with other substances that, in combination, can cause a fatal intoxication.

Originally Created by a Pharmaceutical Company

Unlike some other street drugs which were originally cooked up in a laboratory, Pink’s origins can be traced to a more legitimate source. It was originally called U47700 and was made by Upjohn, a pharmaceutical company that was attempting to develop a new pain reliever.

The medication was never approved for use on humans or sold to the public. The patent was registered, however, and the drug’s formula found its way onto the Internet. From there, it started being produced in laboratories set up overseas.

The drug is available for sale online, and has now reached American streets. Buyers may not be aware of what they are taking or they may be buying heroin, cocaine or other drugs that have been cut with Pink. It’s a common practice for dealers to add other ingredients to street drugs, and buyers are not aware of what they may be taking along with their drug of choice.

Pink Declared a Controlled Substance

After the news of the untimely deaths attributed to Pink in 2016, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) sought an emergency order in November to have Pink designated a Schedule 1 controlled substance, making it illegal to possess, manufacture or sell it. Drugs in this category have no accepted medical use and have a high potential for abuse.

The Start of the Painkiller Epidemic?

OxyContinA recent investigation published by STAT news found what appears to be evidence of the beginning of the prescription opioid epidemic, and how efforts to stop it were thwarted by the maker of OxyContin 15 years ago.

Officials from the West Virginia state employees health plan saw a rise in the number of deaths related to oxycodone, and requested to have OxyContin placed on a list of drugs that required pre-authorization. Instead, the drug’s maker, Purdue Pharma, apparently paid off the pharmacy benefits management company via “rebates” to keep it on the regular list of easily accessible drugs. This action, combined with the fact that the drug maker was hiding information about OxyContin being more addictive than other similar drugs, started one of the worst healthcare crises in the last century.

Since that time, the number of deaths tied to opiates, including painkillers and heroin, has skyrocketed to 28,000 lives lost in a single year.

Tom Susman, who headed West Virginia’s employee insurance agency back then, stated, “We were screaming at the wall. We saw it coming. Now to see the aftermath is the most frustrating thing I have ever seen.” Unfortunately, their efforts fell on deaf ears and were chewed up by a corrupt pharmaceutical business. Now West Virginia has the highest incidence rate for opioid fatalities.

Given this and so many other stories that have risen in recent years about the drug company’s involvement in the opioid epidemic, it seems like more should be done to help save lives today. The White House recently asked for over $1 billion in new spending to treat the opiate abuse crisis. Rather than passing that off onto Congress (who gets the money from all of us taxpayers), a much better resource for that funding should come from pharmaceutical giants who make billions off of these drugs, including the ravages left in their wake.

Deadly Fentanyl Showing up in More Drugs

fentanylexhibitsXanax abuse is not as widely discussed as other prescription drug problems, but it is becoming more common. As if the drug wasn’t bad enough when people get addicted, now investigators have discovered that some drug dealers are manufacturing fake Xanax that has been combined with fentanyl.

Among opioid users, Xanax use is a well-known addition to their drug consumption since it produces a different type of high. It may be because of this, that drug dealers have decided to make their own form of Xanax, by mixing it with fentanyl, which is a powerful synthetic opiate that is often given to people who are recovering from surgery.

“Young adults in particular are at high risk for nonmedical use of pharmaceuticals, with estimates that nearly 3 percent of people between the ages of 18 to 25 have engaged in the nonmedical use of pain relievers in the previous month. The nonmedical use of pharmaceuticals represents a serious and burgeoning public health risk. Of great concern is that people may be turning to street dealers to purchase these pharmaceuticals and be exposed to dangerous counterfeit products,” said Annie Arens, a toxicology expert at the University of California, San Francisco.

This new drug combination is showing up in different parts of the country already, as there have been cases in Florida to California. Accidental overdoses are more common when the user is not aware of what they are taking. Many experts are very concerned because of the deadly combination of these drugs.

According to the DEA, fentanyl traffickers have been successful at expanding the market and introducing new drugs laced with it to the U.S. drug market. The National Forensic Laboratory Information System (NFLIS) reported that there were 13,002 fentanyl exhibits tested by forensic laboratories across the country in, which is a 65 percent increase from the 7,864 exhibits the year before. There were approximately eight times as many instances in 2015 as there were during the 2006 fentanyl crisis, clearly demonstrating the unprecedented threat and expansion of the fentanyl market.

Some Doctors Hesitant to Prescribe Naloxone

narcanAs naloxone, a medication that reverses an opioid overdose, has gained more publicity, doctors are being urged to prescribe it as a preventive measure to patients who are also given narcotic painkillers. The thought behind this is that the risk for overdose is so great that even patients who do not abuse these drugs are at risk of this possibility.

However, some doctors rejected this idea. The fear was that their patients would be offended if given a prescription made popular by its use on heroin addicts. The survey, however, showed different results.

“Some providers have voiced concern that prescribing naloxone to patients could result in negative patient reactions. We found that this was rare. Even among the few with a negative initial reaction, all but one patient still wanted naloxone again in the future,” explained Dr. Phillip Coffin, a co-author on the study.

Doctors are placed in a difficult position. They are required to treat patients to the best of their ability, though there is still the human element of additional thoughts and feelings. Oftentimes doctors may agree with a decision like prescribing naloxone to painkiller user in theory, but they have to weigh that decision with the potential backlash of offended patients. And while the survey shows that patients are generally not offended, the question still looms for many of them.

This hesitation is even more important when one looks at the origins of the prescription painkiller problem today. When the epidemic was still in its infancy, most doctors were not educated enough on the potential for dependency and abuse, and nobody was prepared for the levels of addiction that ensued. By the time the full ramifications were realized as a nation, it was too late.

Since then, the medical community has increased its efforts to minimize the amount of harm caused by opioids. Doctors are now being required to enroll in more addiction education classes, limits are being placed on the number of pills that are given out in hospital emergency rooms, and prescription drug monitoring programs are being used more widely.

Fentanyl Increases Heroin Overdose Rates

fentanylAmong the largest number of drug overdose fatalities in history is a subset of opioid users, typically heroin, who unknowingly ingest fentanyl. The drug, which is up to 100 times more powerful than morphine, made headlines again when it was implicated in the death of Prince in Minnesota this year.

Fentanyl is so potent that it is typically prescribed to people with more severe chronic pain in the form of a transdermal patch that slowly releases the drug in small increments. It has been the source of multiple spikes in overdose deaths in recent years ranging from New Jersey to Michigan and Illinois to Massachusetts. Most recently, it has caused numerous deaths in New Jersey again as well as Delaware.

The Pacific Northwest has also had a long history with opiate addiction, and fentanyl has reared its even uglier head there as well. Just north of the border in Vancouver, British Columbia, officials have declared a public health emergency due to the overdoses in the area. According to the B.C. Centre for Disease Control spokesperson Jane Buxton, “We did a study – it was a year ago now – where we asked people what they do – what drugs they’d used in the last three days and asked them to pee in a pot. And then we tested it. And we found 29 percent had fentanyl in their urine. But of those, 70 percent didn’t know they’d taken fentanyl.”

People addicted to opiates wind up taking fentanyl when the heroin they’re using is cut with the drug. It is a way for dealers to dilute the heroin itself at first with other powders and then increase the potency by adding a small amount of the drug. If this at all comes as a shock to you, please remember that they’re intentionally selling highly addictive and deadly drugs to begin with, so it’s not like they’re really concerned about the health or wellbeing of their buyers.

If you have a loved one with a substance abuse problem, contact us to find out more about Genesis House and successful recovery.

Macklemore Joins President Obama to Talk About Opioid Addiction

obamamacklemoreIn President Obama’s Weekly Address he decided to focus on substance abuse, taking on the topic of prescription opioids in particular. Joining him was Grammy award-winning artist Macklemore, who has previously shared information about his own recovery.

The President made it a point to discuss the rising statistics surrounding painkiller addiction by stating that overdose deaths have tripled since 2000. “A lot of the time, they’re from legal drugs prescribed by a doctor. So addiction doesn’t always start in some dark alley – it often starts in a medicine cabinet,” he said.

Adding to this, Macklemore said that he lost a friend of his to a painkiller overdose when he was 21. “Addiction is like any other disease,” said the artist, “it doesn’t discriminate. It doesn’t care what color you are, whether you’re a guy or a girl, rich or poor, whether you live in the inner-city, a suburb, or rural America. This doesn’t just happen to other people’s kids or in some other neighborhood.”

Macklemore stated that a treatment program and the 12 steps helped to save his life many years ago. Being a role model for millions of fans gives him the chance to be a strong advocate for recovery as well as substance abuse prevention.

A more in-depth interview between the two will air this summer on MTV as part of a special show about addiction.

Drug Maker, Foundation Offer Free Naloxone to High Schools

NARCANYes, it has gotten that bad. Overdoses related to opiates such as heroin and prescription painkillers are becoming so pervasive that Adapt Pharma and the Clinton Foundation are offering a free case of NARCAN (naloxone hydrocholoride nasal spray) to every high school in the country through the states’ department of education.

Recent news from the CDC shows that drug overdose rates have increased in nearly every county in America, and last year they topped more than 47,000 overall. With 60% of these overdose deaths being caused by opioids, it’s no wonder that there is such an initiative.

“We understand the crucial role schools can play to change the course of the opioid overdose epidemic by working with students and families. We also want every high school in the country to be prepared for an opioid emergency by having access to a carton of NARCAN Nasal Spray at no cost,” said Seamus Mulligan, Chairman and CEO of Adapt Pharma in a release from the company. “We look forward to working with our partners to implement these initiatives which build on the significant progress being made by legislators and community groups.”

“We are pleased to encourage public-private collaborations expanding access to naloxone,” said Rain Henderson, CEO of the Clinton Health Matters Initiative. “We are hopeful this effort will facilitate a dialogue amongst students, educators, health professionals, and families about the risks of opioid overdose and ensure naloxone is available in schools that decide to take steps to address opioid overdose emergencies.”

This is another step in efforts to distribute various forms of naloxone throughout the country, including providing it to first responders and making it available direct to the general public. Critics say that it just gives addicts a false sense of security to continue using, but in reality it works as a form of life-saving intervention that can begin the route to recovery. One of the biggest steps is to first reduce the number of casualties, combined with strong prevention and education programs. Of course there also has to be effective treatment administered to help people to stay away from the drugs thereafter.

If you or someone you love has a problem with opiates or any other drug, contact Genesis House today for more information on how our program can help.

Heroin-Related Deaths Jump by 26 Percent Over Previous Year

cdcIn what continues to be an epidemic of opioid abuse and addiction problems throughout the country, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) just released statistics showing that more than 60% of overdose deaths are opioid-related. These include synthetic opiates such as prescription painkillers as well as heroin.

The number of heroin-related deaths increased dramatically from 2013 to 2014, claiming over 10,000 lives. Overall, the CDC reports that there was record number of overdose deaths, more than 47,000 in all.

The report includes some recommendations for curbing this epidemic, such as a heavy reduction in the number of opiate prescriptions being given out by doctors. Getting a handle on safer prescribing patterns will help limit the number of people unnecessarily being put on these addictive painkillers. Researchers have demonstrated that there are often more effective ways of treating many common aches and pains that are much safer than prescribing narcotics.

Another recommendation is to continue providing naloxone to first-responders – and even consumers – to help reverse an opioid overdose in emergency situations. Although several states in the Northeast have been making strides in this area, it really should be more of a national effort.

Of course two important factors are to also increase treatment and prevention efforts. We continue to see miraculous results at Genesis House for people recovering from an opiate addiction. If you or someone you love is in need of help, contact us today to find out more about our treatment options.