Tag Archives: rehab

How Bad is The Heroin Epidemic?

Opioids are the the most prevalent cause of drug overdose in the US, and overdose rates continue to increase. From the year 1999 to the year 2008, heroin overdose rates increased by 400%, and rates have quadrupled again since 2010. Heroin overdose rates increased by over 20% from 2014 to 2015 alone. We are in the midst of a crisis, and opioids are to blame

Many heroin addictions begin with prescription opioids. In fact, three out of four new users report abusing pills first. For years, doctors prescribed them more freely. In more recent years research on their addictive properties and overdose rates has caused doctors to reduce, and sometimes cut off, prescriptions. Addicts can buy opioid pills, but they are very expensive. Heroin is less expensive and much stronger, so addicts sometimes turn to it out of desperation.

It is estimated that around 70,000 people report using heroin each year, but the number is likely much higher. Many addicts do not seek treatment on their own and would not answer questions about heroin use honestly. Demographically, the average heroin user is white, male, low-income, has abused prescription drugs in the past, and between the ages of 18 and 25.

Do you suspect that someone you care about is abusing heroine? Learn the signs.

Signs of heroin use include:

  • tiny pupils
  • appearance of sleepiness
  • flushed skin
  • paraphernalia, such as burnt spoons, baggies of a white substance or syringes
  • runny nose
  • track marks, or always covering arms
  • lack of self care, such as eating and grooming
  • nausea or vomiting
  • scratching

Health risks of heroin use include damage to the lungs, heart and kidneys, as well as severe impairment of the ability to think.

Because the potency of heroin varies and addicts often use more to achieve a stronger effect, overdose rates are very high. Often times, the difference between the amount needed for the desired effect and the amount that could cause a fatal overdose is very small. Because of this, all heroin users are at risk of overdose.

Do you or someone you care about need help overcoming addiction? We at Genesis House are here for you. You can reach us, 24 hours a day, at 800-737-0933

What is Drunk Packing?

Drunk packing has gained popularity recently, after a college student died after his friends practiced the trend. Drunk packing involves rolling a drunk person onto their stomach and placing something heavy, like a backpack, on their pack. The goal is that this will prevent them from rolling over onto their back and choking on their own vomit.

Who practices drunk packing?

You may be wondering if someone you care about could fall prey to this trend. This new practice is common on college campuses, especially among those who are afraid to call for help when a friend has alcohol poisoning. Because of this, many who use this method are underage. The intention with drunk packing is good, but misguided. You may think that someone can only choke on their vomit if they are on their back, so they are protected and can sleep safely.

The Problems with Drunk Packing

  • You can choke in any position.
  • The weight of the backpack can do more harm than good.
  • Choking is not the only danger faced by someone with alcohol poisoning.

Because young people are the ones most effected by this trend, it is important that they are educated in the matter. Drunk packing is not safe. If you or a friend has practiced this, or you suspect that someone you love is drunk packing, there are a couple important facts of which you should be aware. First, most schools have amnesty policies. This means that you will not get in trouble for calling for help. If someone is drunk enough that you are worried for their safety, it is better to be safe than sorry and seek medical help. Second, drunk packing may become a punishable offense in itself, now that someone has died after being drunk packed. It is no longer a way to stay out of trouble, because the risks have been made public.

So, what should you do about this new trend? If you believe that you or someone you care about is in danger from drunk packing and alcoholism, we at Genesis House are here to help. You can reach us 24 hours a day on our toll free number: 800-737-0933

Why Do Most Rehabs Teach The 12 Steps?

In healthcare it is generally agreed that alcoholism and addiction are a disease. While there is no outright cure, the most effective treatment modalities involve a holistic approach that targets your physical, mental and emotional health. This often includes engagement with a twelve-step program. Nearly 75 percent of drug and alcohol treatment centers teach patients these programs. Why is this and are they effective?

Alcoholics Anonymous and similar programs that engage the 12-step model are the only method that have been proven to work in promoting long-term mental health and relapse prevention. Inpatient care, medication and healthy lifestyle choices can improve your physical condition, but the twelve steps aim to provide you with the tools, community and support you need to make lasting change.

Most people have heard of such programs, but their practice is actually more complex than you might know. At first the process can seem confusing and daunting. Learning about the steps while in treatment provides a safe environment and individual attention to learn about the steps, the benefits of the program, and get you connected in the recovery community outside of treatment.

Benefits of the 12 Step Program

While the twelve steps are designed to treat alcoholism and addiction, they more broadly focus on improving your quality of life. Strong treatment programs will teach you about the twelve-step program to provide a foundation of skills and knowledge that are necessary for working the steps thoroughly, in treatment and afterwards. These are some of the benefits that come with working a twelve-step program.

  • Encourage self-esteem, self-help, and responsibility
  • Builds support network with other alcoholics and addicts
  • Simple, actionable steps reduce overwhelming problems into manageable actions
  • Promotes honest introspection and interactions with others
  • Assists in repairing relationships
  • Collective strength of shared experience, strength and hope

One of the major benefits of working a twelve-step program is the community provided by meetings. Since the founding of Alcoholics Anonymous, clinicians and alcoholic alike have stressed the importance of working with other alcoholics as an integral part of the recovery process.

Attending meetings and engaging with the community offers the opportunity to share experience, strength, and hope with others. Early in recovery, this means connecting with people who have been in your shoes, and understanding how the program has worked in their lives. Are you ready to see how it can work in yours? Call us now at 800-737-0933

If I Have HIV, Can I Still Get Into Drug Rehab?

Almost everybody who struggles with substance abuse has other underlying issues that need to be addressed. Sometimes these are emotional problems that drive people to experiment with drugs and alcohol, and in other situations there are physical issues at play. Any successful drug treatment program needs to address all of the issues that affect a person’s health, and that includes HIV and AIDS.

Even though HIV is often thought of as a sexually transmitted infection, it often goes hand-in-hand with drug abuse. This is why it is not uncommon for someone with a substance abuse problem to be HIV-positive. It can also make treatment more complicated for a number of reasons. First of all, HIV and AIDS obviously compromises a person’s health and immune system, which can make any kind of medical treatment that much more difficult. Many people who are addicted to drugs and alcohol are also much less likely to remain compliant with other medications that they need to take to be healthy. For someone living with HIV or AIDS, that can be deadly.

Of course, there’s also the stigma surrounding HIV and AIDS. It’s not nearly as severe as it once was when the AIDS epidemic was at its worst, but it’s still there, and it can make one hesitant to seek treatment for their substance abuse problems. While it’s totally understandable why you would keep quiet about being HIV-positive, you can still seek treatment at a drug rehab center. It’s still an important step that you need to take to be healthy and reclaim your life, but you shouuld seek out a program that is geared toward those who are living with HIV or AIDS. Fortunately, programs such as these are more common than you might think; all you need to do is seek them out.

If you live with both HIV and drug addiction, there is always help available to you. We at Genesis House have safe and nurturing drug rehabilitation programs available for anybody who wants to be free of their addictions. Visit us online to learn more about our many treatment programs and how they can help you. If you need immediate help for yourself or a loved one, don’t hesitate to call us at 800-737-0933. No matter who you are, always remember that there is help available to you, even when things seem hopeless.

Running Away From Addiction: Travel Out of State For Rehab

If you or a loved one are suffering from some type of addiction, you may be looking for options for treatment. Your focus is probably on treatment centers and programs close to home. While there are many good reasons to look for programs within your city, county or state, there are also some valid reasons to look beyond the borders to treatment facilities out of state.

You can easily find many programs around the country for the treatment of drug, alcohol or other addictions. Here ate a few reasons to look outside your home state for your treatment program:

  • A new setting gives you a new perspective.
  • You can get away from the negative influences in your life.
  • You may find programs with unique treatment options not offered in your area.

These are just a few of the benefits of attending a treatment center in another state. When you select this option, it can feel like a brand-new start.

 

How to Find an Out-of-State Rehab Program

If you’ve decided to try a rehab program in another state, you will want to do some research for the right one. You can do much of your work online. Many programs have their own websites, which will tell you about the services they offer and any special requirements.

You can also ask for a recommendation from a doctor or other professional. Their contacts often extend beyond local networks, and they can help you decide on the right program for your needs.

Look for reviews on the programs to find out from others what it’s really like. Testimonials provide a first-hand look at how it works and the pros and cons. While it should not serve as the sole basis for your decision, reviews can provide valuable information.

Contact the rehab center. Be prepared with a list of questions you may have about the facility and the programs offered. While you may not be able to tour the center in person, you should be able to talk to people and get answers to the questions you have.

Going away from home for addiction treatment can be a frightening concept. However, it can also give you a new start, which can be the incentive for you to keep going and win the battle against the addiction.

Call Genesis House Today:  800-737-0933

Why Do Some People Become Addicted to Drugs While Others Do Not?

There is not a simple answer to that question, unfortunately. Addiction is a life-long and multifaceted disease that can affect someone at any point in their life. Everyone’s brain is different and will respond differently when an addictive substance is introduced.

Furthermore, over time and continued use, the substance actually changes the brain’s chemistry and the cell structure, particularly in the regions that control learning, decision-making, stress, memory, and judgment and behavior. This is the reason someone with an addiction can’t just “give it up” like someone without. Their brain has actually changed. These changes can happen quickly and at any time, which is why someone can become addicted at any point in their lives, without even realizing it.

Having said that, there are certain factors that appear to be important to whether or not someone develops an addiction.

Factors of Addiction

  • Biology Many addictive predispositions, like gender or memory disorders are attributed to genetic components. Additionally, people with underlying psychiatric conditions are at greater risk of becoming addicted. Particularly people who are unaware of having a mental illness may begin using substances to self-medicate and alleviate their symptoms. While the offspring of people who have addiction often develop an addiction themselves, there is no one “addiction gene.”
  • Social Environment Often times, addiction may occur within family groups because they all exist within a similar social environment. This factor includes the environment at home, at school or work. It includes one’s family and friends, as well as socio-economic status and general quality of life.
  • Human Development Though people can become addicted at any age, younger people who use drugs or alcohol have a higher likelihood of developing an addiction. This is because the vulnerable parts of the brain are still developing, like those that control decision-making, judgment, and self-control.
  • Trauma Going through a traumatic experience, like abuse, neglect, or losing a loved one early in life can make one easily susceptible to addiction.

Addiction is a biological chemical reaction that a person cannot control. It is not a moral failing or a lack of desire or effort. Fortunately, addiction is absolutely treatable and can be managed with support and counseling. If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction, our counselors are available 24 hours a day to help you get treatment. Call 800-737-0933

Detox Program

How Do I Know I Will Be Cured After Going To Detox?

Whether you are researching detox for yourself or for your children, you are doing so to procure a certain outcome. You want to rid the body of this addiction and live a more fruitful existence. Therefore, you also likely want to know if you will be cured after going to detox.

In order to procure an answer to your question, you should understand a few important points about detox:

  • Detox is not a cure
  • Detox is part of a process
  • You matter
  • You’ll have support

Thinking about detox as a cure might stifle your progress. Going through detox is not a guarantee that you will live a life free from addiction. The amount of effort and dedication you put into the endeavor play a significant role. Also, detox is not the only part of your recovery plan.

At the beginning of recovery, you usually go through detox to eliminate your body of the current drugs in it and to begin to break the cycle of addiction. After that, however, entering into a rehab program is advisable so that you can build the tools necessary to stay away from the drug.

 

Your Role in Your Recovery

You play an important role in your recovery. One of the most important steps you can take is to choose proven detox. During the detoxification process, your body may begin to experience withdrawal symptoms, and some of these symptoms can feel severe. You may develop a strong craving for the drug while you are in detox. Having medical supervision can help to ease some of the physical symptoms. Furthermore, you will have support around you. When you are supported by trained individuals during this process, you can significantly reduce the chances that you will take drugs.

Also, keep in mind that how much effort you put into the program after detox will play a strong role in whether or not you recover. Take advantage of the opportunities in the program even if they push you outside of your comfort zone. For example, group therapy can be tremendously helpful despite your fears about talking in public.

The answer is that you don’t know if you will be cured by going to detox and to rehab. However, you can increase your chances of recovery by taking certain steps and by calling us today at 800-737-0933 to begin your journey toward recovery.

How Accurate Are Drug Tests?

Drug tests are relatively common in the U.S. Most people have been tested at one time or another when applying for a job. Addiction treatment centers also administer drug tests to patients. But how accurate are these tests? Are they reliable?

The short answer: it depends. Some types of drug testing are highly accurate, while others are much more error-prone. There are five main types of drug test:

  • Urine tests
  • Blood tests
  • Saliva tests
  • Sweat tests
  • Hair tests

Most of these testing methods are, on the whole, accurate. In general, hair tests and blood tests are the most accurate testing methods. However, they tend to be relatively expensive, so many employers and rehab facilities do not use them. Urine tests are more commonly administered, but they tend to be a little more error-prone.

One frequently asked question is whether it’s possible to “cheat” on a drug test. Again, the answer is that it depends. Some testing methods are easier to fool than others. Urine testing, in particular, is vulnerable to cheaters. It’s much harder – if not impossible – to cheat on a blood test or a hair test.

Keep reading to learn more about each type of drug testing and its accuracy.

 

More Information on the Different Types of Drug Tests

When most people hear the words “drug test,” they think of a urine test. Urine testing is the most common form of drug testing because it’s quick and inexpensive. It’s also accurate – most of the time. Some people have found ways to tamper with urine testing, such as drinking lots of water ahead of time, mixing their urine with other additives, or even using someone else’s urine.

Hair testing is less common than urine testing. It’s more expensive and it takes longer, because the sample of hair must be sent to a lab for analysis. However, a hair test is hard to fool, because drug metabolites get locked in the hair strands permanently. Certain shampoos claim to be able to get rid of the metabolites, but there’s no evidence they work.

Blood tests and saliva tests also tend to be accurate. In fact, blood testing is the most accurate form of testing available right now. However, these tests only work within a short window of time. Most of the time, these tests are only accurate if a person has used drugs within the last few days.

A sweat test involves wearing a patch on the skin. While these tests can pick up traces of drugs in a person’s sweat, they’re also prone to giving false positives. Dirt and other substances can render a sweat test inaccurate, so these tests aren’t commonly used.

Why Do I Need Rehab If My Drug Use Is Not Hurting Anyone Else?

A common thought shared by many “functional” addicts is that as long as their drug use affects only themselves, then it is not really a problem. Even a heavy user can show up for work everyday and not inconvenience coworkers; they can continue to financially support themselves and families. If the substance abuse in question appears not to be affecting their relationships, it can be difficult to believe treatment is necessary. Even more difficult is to convince a loved one of the harm their habit truly causes. Read through the thoughts outlined below for some reasons to seek rehab before a “harmless” habit becomes a raging and destructive one.

Four Considerations For “Harmless” Substance Abusers

  • Permanent physical harm to oneself is a huge consideration. Brain damage, liver damage and mental illness can all result from substance abuse. These are not always easily observable or measurable. Some permanent lasting harm, like liver damage for example, may not even show up on blood tests until the damage is significant and difficult to reverse.
  • Relationships may be damaged. Be honest, how much harm do we inflict on others but dismiss their concerns, complaints or objections? An addict may truly believe they are only harming themselves, but ignore the distress their habit causes friends and family. The worry and fear for a loved one with a substance abuse problem may appear harmless or trivial on the surface, but in fact be extremely painful. A substance abuser isn’t always in the best position to judge the harm they create around them.
  • Coworkers may be impacted. Just because someone shows up for work everyday doesn’t mean they are delivering their best. Small mistakes can happen and turn into huge issues. When in the midst of a drug habit, tempers become short. Colleagues may notice the circles under bloodshot eyes and be concerned but too afraid to say anything.
  • Why wait until the harm occurs? Once it does, it may be irreparable. Relationships can be destroyed and finances ruined due to a drug habit. The loss of promising employment opportunities can be difficult to recover from. Even worse than job loss are legal consequences for illegal behavior, which can be permanently on one’s record and easily discovered by a background check.

If you or someone you love is ready to move beyond substance abuse toward a better future, we are here to help. Please call us at 800-737-0933

Is Addiction Truly a Disease?

Finding the courage to get help battling addiction is difficult, especially when the addict and those around him fail to see addiction as a disease. Because many addicts made a choice at some point to drink alcohol or try a drug, people often view addiction as a choice or lack of morality and willpower. This is not the case, however. Addiction is considered a disease for several reasons. Understanding them can help both an addict and his or her loved ones come to a better understanding of addiction. These are the reasons addiction is considered to be a disease.

Biology

Studies of addiction have shown that there is a 40 to 60 percent chance that an individual may be susceptible to addiction based on genetics. Those with addicts in their family tree are more likely to become addicts themselves and are likely to become addicted to a given substance more quickly than others. Mental illness also increases the likelihood of addiction as it alters the way the brain functions.

The Brain is Hardwired for Addiction

The human brain has evolved in a way that inadvertently invites addiction. When the body does something that feels good, like eating, exercising or having sex, the brain releases dopamine to encourage the behavior. These activities are necessary for survival, so the brain rewards the body for them with a hit of dopamine and positive feelings. Drugs and alcohol can overstimulate the brain, causing it to bathe itself in a sea of excess dopamine. This makes the person feel so good that they want to repeat the experience. As drug usage continues, the brain must get used to functioning with an excess of dopamine and forgets how to work without it. Over time, drug use stops affecting only the brain’s pleasure center and begins affecting other chemicals. The result is changes in all of the following:

  • Learning
  • Judgement
  • Decision-making
  • Stress levels
  • Memory
  • Behavior

Relapse Cycles

Many diseases are manageable and treatable but not curable. In this way too, addiction is like a disease. Although addictions can be overcome and beaten, staying sober requires lifelong vigilance. Once the chemistry of the brain is altered by addiction, relapse is always possible. The body may continue to crave and desire drugs and alcohol even though an individual has not been using them. This pattern is similar to other diseases that sometimes go into remission but can become active again later.

When understood as a disease, it’s east to see why addiction requires professional treatment. No one expects a diabetic or cancer patient to get well on their own, and the same should be true of those suffering from addiction. If you or someone you love is battling this disease, get help today by calling 800-737-0933. The path to freedom from addiction starts with a simple phone call.