The United States is currently facing an opiate addiction epidemic, with opiate-related deaths quadrupling since 1999. There were approximately 19,000 deaths linked to opiates in 2014 alone, and it is estimated that up to 36 million people abuse these substances worldwide. Despite these numbers and all the problems that opiate addiction can cause, many of them are still being prescribed by doctors across the country. Some would argue that prescriptions for medications such as OxyContin, Percocet, and Vicodin should be taken off the market, while others believe that these drugs are helpful as long as they aren’t abused.
Opiates are often prescribed to help patients deal with pain after suffering an injury or while they recover from a major surgical procedure. They have also proven useful for those living with chronic conditions such as fibromyalgia, endrometriosis, and Ehlers-Danlos syndrome. These are all painful chronic conditions, and many people who live with them need some kind of medication just to maintain a good quality of life. Should they be expected to go without medicine that they arguably need because so many people abuse their prescriptions?
The Dangers of Opiates
The thing that makes opiates so dangerous is that they produce an intense high that makes them very addictive. The short-term effects of these drugs include pain relief and a feeling of euphoria. The relief from pain is attractive to anybody living with chronic pain or even acute pain from an injury, while euphoria is a common desired effect of many drugs. Abuse of opiates can also cause people to become addicted in as little as three days. Some of the side effects of opiate abuse include:
- A depressed respiratory system
Long-term opiate use can cause problems such as chronic constipation, liver damage, and brain damage resulting from a depressed respiratory system.
With as dangerous and readily available as opiates are, should doctors stop prescribing them? Many people say yes, and the government has even encouraged doctors to avoid prescribing them. On the other hand, they do have their uses as long as they are taken as prescribed. Short-term opiate use can help people recover from injury and illness, but doctors need to make it clear that these drugs should only be used in the short-term.
If you believe that you are developing a dependence on opiates or you have struggled with substance abuse, there is help available. Contact us today to learn how you can recover from opiate addiction. Call Now 800-737-0933
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
- A runny nose and perspiration
- Spasms in muscles
- Fever and chills
- 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.
As a parent, you did your best to teach your child right from wrong. You’ve brought them up in church. You did your best to monitor their friends and activities. Yet, your child was somehow introduced to drugs or alcohol. Now, you face helping your child beat substance abuse. Your faith is essential in not only getting your child through a Christian rehab program in South Florida, but it is also a source of strength for you as a parent. Below are some important things to remember as your child works toward sobriety.
Faith Assures Us That We Are Never Alone
Romans 8:28 (NIV) assures us that “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” While you may not feel that anything good can come out of your present situation, God assures us that all things work toward a positive purpose. First, your child is working toward sobriety, which is always a good thing. Perhaps God is using this situation to make your family closer, to strengthen your testimony, or “growing” your child as a person and a Christian. God also assures us that we are never alone, not even in the worst situations. 2 Timothy 4:17 tells us “The Lord stood at my side and gave me strength.” Allow God to give you strength as you go through this valley in life. Enlist your friends and church family in praying for your situation. You might also seek some counseling with your pastor. Being able to speak to someone confidentially who is also a Christian can help strengthen you as you help your child through this situation. Remember the “Footprints” poem – when there was one set of footprints, it was then that the Lord carried His child.
Learn to Let Go
This will be the toughest part of your journey. You must accept that your child’s situation is a result of his or her choices. Nothing you did or didn’t do could have changed the present situation. You must not blame yourself or second guess your parenting. The most important thing to do is to be there for your child, be accepting, and welcome your child with open arms at all times. Remember, God has also dealt with prodigal children Himself. There is no better source of comfort than His presence at this time. However, you and your child cannot move forward if you hold on to hurt and blame yourself for your child’s situation.
Again, your pastor is a great source of support at this time. Being able to pray with your pastor as he counsels you is a great source of comfort for many parents. He may also be able to suggest a group of Christian parents who are in a similar situation. If so, joining a group that provides support and understanding for your situation will also give you the strength to make it through this trying time.
Finally, do not let your own health go while you walk through this journey. It is important for you to take care of yourself, find adequate support with parents in a similar situation, lean on your pastor for Christian counseling, and ground yourself in God’s word regarding trials in life. You and your child will be able to look back and look at this situation as a positive one day.
If you are a parent to a drug addicted son, it can be devastating to see them living the life that they’ve chosen. Drug rehabilitation is beneficial in many ways, as it helps to get your son away from their harmful lifestyle and learning coping mechanisms to handle their addiction.
Here are five reasons why you can’t afford to not send your son to a drug rehabilitation center:
- Brighter Future
Going to rehab offers a brighter and cleaner future for your son. Drug addictions can prevent your child from getting a solid job, getting into school and living a thoroughly responsible life. Rehab can turn things around for them, teaching them how to live a full life without the need for drugs.
- Better Health
No matter what type of drug your son is using, it is still harmful to his health. Drug users have a higher risk of heart attacks and strokes, as well as a myriad of other health-related problems. Because of this, rehab will eliminate and prevent these issues from becoming problematic due to their drug addiction.
- Overdose Risk Eliminated
Overdosing is one of the scariest prospects for parents to drug addicted children. When your child is clean and free of their addiction, their risk for overdosing is totally eliminated. This prevents a premature and untimely passing due to their harmful addiction.
- Professional Caring Environment
A drug rehabilitation center is staffed by trained and experienced professionals who are there to help and assist your son in everything he needs to overcome his harmful lifestyle. There are also nurses and doctors on staff to handle withdrawal symptoms, so this is another benefit to them when in the facility as opposed to doing it on their own.
- Extra Support
Upon leaving the drug rehab facility, your son will have a support group for life. Oftentimes, they will leave with a connection of friends and staff with whom they can connect whenever they want. This makes it easier for your son to continue on the path to a healthy and clean life that he can feel proud of living.
While it’s difficult to deal with a drug addicted child, a great rehab center can turn their lives around for the better. This prevents the long-term effects of constant drug use and allows your son to live the life that you all can feel proud of.
Call The One and Only Genesis House today 800-737-0933
About Medical Marijuana
In recent years, the push to legalize the growth and consumption of marijuana has been backed by those who believe it holds the key to treatment of a variety of disorders, from seizures to PTSD to chronic pain. You may have read news articles or seen videos that tell stories of people whose lives have been improved drastically since beginning to use marijuana for treatment. These stories provide hope for people with these conditions, who often relocate themselves to states where medical marijuana is legal in hopes of finding a cure for their pain.
What We Know
The excitement around medical marijuana is not completely unfounded. Anecdotal evidence shows that it does have the potential to be a strong, versatile treatment for a number of debilitating conditions. Unfortunately, this alone does not make it a good choice. Anecdotal evidence does not mean that it will hold up under clinical trials, and the questionable legality of the drug means that there are no standardized regulations in place for the industry. Marijuana continues to be illegal on a federal level, so individual states are responsible for deciding whether to legalize it and how to regulate medical marijuana. Some states require it to be sold in the form of cannabis oil at varying levels of potency, while others allow it to be sold as a plant with low THC levels, allowing patients to smoke it.
The fact that marijuana remains illegal federally means that buying and using it will always carry some legal risk. Even if you live in a state where it is legal, the federal government could overrule that legal status at any time and cut off access to the treatments. Federally approved pain medication is not in such a precarious position. Since individual states have their own, differing regulations, it is highly difficult to make sure that the dosage of cannabis is standardized. This can cause it to have unpredictable effects on the body. In addition, taking medical marijuana by smoking the plant is dangerous, as it brings potentially toxic chemicals into the lungs along with cannabis smoke. The future of medical marijuana is uncertain. It may become a safe option if stricter regulations are implemented on a federal level, following controlled research about its effectiveness and interaction with other medications. Currently, prescribed pain medications are causing addiction and the need for treatment is higher.
Let us show you how to live pain free and in recovery 800-737-0933
Finding out about a loved one’s addiction can be challenging. Parent’s often ask themselves where they went wrong, why their child or children made the choices that led to their addiction, and why their child is addicted. Addiction is not solely the result of non-adaptive decisions. Instead, it is often the result of genetics, psychological problems, trauma, and one’s social environment.
Genetics & Social Environment
Addiction is partly genetic. There is no single gene associated with addiction. For example, many twin studies have demonstrated that children of alcoholics are at least four times more likely to develop alcohol addiction than their peers. There are multiple genes that can influence an individual’s likelihood to develop an addiction. Some genes influence impulse control or decrease the likelihood of individual’s disengaging in substance use. Other genes influence the severity of withdrawal symptoms. Although genes cannot be changed, families with histories of addictions can work proactively to educate their children, adolescents, and adult children about the genetic risks for developing addictive behaviors. This can include helping your loved one make positive social connections in their community.
Psychological Problems & Trauma
Addiction rarely presents as a single issue. Instead, many individuals who experience addiction also have depression, significant anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, or other mood disorders. Addiction is often developed as a non-adaptive coping skills in order to manage the symptoms of psychological problems. This is why individual and group mental health counseling is often a key part of addiction treatment. Mental health counseling can be used during addiction treatment and in recovery to help individual’s learn adaptive coping skills so that they can manage anxiety, depression, and other mood disorders without drugs or alcohol.
Trauma, especially childhood trauma, can significantly impact the brain’s development. Chronic stress and fear, which are related to childhood experiences of abuse and neglect,can result in cognitive, emotional, and behavioral impairments. Two thirds of addicts have experienced physical or sexual trauma during childhood. You cannot always control your child’s experiences. However, knowledge about trauma can help inform addiction treatment. There are a variety of trauma-focused therapeutic approaches which can help your adult child address his or her traumatic experiences and learn alternative coping skills.
Genetics cannot be changed. However, addiction can be conquered by addressing your loved one’s social environment, underlying psychological issues, and past traumas.
We can help, call now 800-737-0933
People have been seeking treatment for their drug and alcohol addictions for many years. However, as time has gone on, treatments have changed significantly compared to how things were done in the past. If you have a drug or alcohol addiction, there has never been a better time to seek treatment. These are some of the ways that addiction treatment has changed and improved over the years.
It’s Being Treated as a Medical Issue
In the past, many people saw addiction as being a moral or willpower issue. In fact, some people still feel this way. People in the addiction treatment industry understand, however, that addiction is a real medical condition and know that it should be treated as such. Over the years, certain medications and other treatment options have improved greatly.
Underlying Issues are Being Better Understood
It is also important to understand that there are sometimes underlying issues that make a person more prone to addiction. For example, if addiction runs in a person’s family, this should be addressed. Additionally, some people have unresolved mental health issues that can cause them to self-medicate with drugs or alcohol. In many cases, working with a mental health professional so that he or she can diagnose and treat these issues can be very helpful in the recovery process.
The Importance of a Support System is Being Emphasized
Getting sober isn’t easy. A lot of people do not have the right support system to help them through this journey, which can make things much more difficult. Addiction treatment professionals know, however, that a good support system is important. Therefore, this is something that treatment centers are putting more of a focus on nowadays, which can have great results.
Therefore, addiction treatment facilities are putting a huge focus on ensuring that clients have the support in treatment that they need. They also work with them to help them ensure that they will have a good support system when they go home so that they can have a more successful recovery.
Addiction treatment is nothing new, but the way that it is handled is definitely changing. If you or a loved one suffers from a drug or alcohol addiction, now is the time to seek treatment.
Need Help? Call Us Today 800-737-0933
The American Bar Association and Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation have partnered to look at the rates for substance abuse and mental health issues among lawyers. The results of the study were reported in the Journal of Addiction Medicine.
Researchers used self-reporting surveys to gather information from 12,825 licensed attorneys. Study participants were almost equally divided among men and women (53.4 percent vs. 46.5 percent), with 31-40 years of age being the most common age group. Most of the participants described themselves as being White (91.3 percent), and the most commonly reported career length was 10 years or fewer (34.8 percent).
Anxiety and Depression a Significant Issue
The results of the research gathered showed that a significant number of respondents experience depression, anxiety and stress. The percentages were 28 percent for mild or higher levels of depression, 19 percent for anxiety and 23 percent for stress.
Problem Drinking Scored High Among Respondents
The respondents were asked to complete an Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT). More than 20 percent of them (20.6 percent) scored at a level “consistent with problematic drinking”; 25.1 percent of men surveyed drank at this consumption level compared with 15.5 percent of women.
Younger lawyers had a significantly higher level of alcohol consumption than older ones. Attorney under the age of 30 were most at risk for problematic drinking, with 31.9 percent of them engaged in this behavior. Lawyers under the age of 40 represented the next-highest risk group, with 25.1 percent.
Of the respondents who felt that drinking or use of other substances was a problem, over one-quarter (27.6 percent) said that their issue started before law school, 14.2 percent said that the problem started while attending law school and 43.7 percent said that the problem began within 15 years of completing law school. Just over 14 percent of respondents said that their problem with alcohol or substances started more than 15 years after completing law school.
Barriers to Getting Help for Substance Abuse
The survey respondents said that there were two main barriers to getting help for substance abuse: fear of others finding out they needed help and privacy concerns.
In light of these results being made public, hopefully more lawyers will realize they are not alone and feel comfortable about seeking help for substance abuse and mental health concerns. Treatment centers like Genesis House offer specialized rehabilitation programs to help professionals begin their recovery and return to work with new tools to remain sober.
The issue of addiction has touched most people’s lives in one way or another. Due to this common association, it can often be hard to discuss it without painful emotions being stirred up. However, according to the Surgeon General of the United States, these discussions not only have to be had, but the lives of millions of people are at risk if something is not done about the substance abuse problem in our country.
In his recently released report, Dr. Vivek Murthy details how many lives are being lost to addiction and how many people suffer from the disease. He also discusses possible solutions, and appropriate ways to include the illegal drug epidemic in conversation and future policies. “How we respond to this crisis is a moral test for America. Are we a nation willing to take on an epidemic that is causing great human suffering and economic loss?” questioned Dr. Murthy
Facing Addiction in America is the appropriate title of the paper issued by the Surgeon General. Readers can learn a lot about the current situation, including that every day 78 people die from opiate overdoses. This is despite increased public awareness of the dangers of prescription painkiller abuse, first responders being equipped with naloxone, a drug that reverses the effects of an overdose, and doctors decreasing the amount of prescriptions they write for painkillers. We don’t have to wait and see until the next round of statistics is released, we can continue to do more to save lives now.
Dr. Murthy explains that drug addiction is a chronic disease that is much more likely to be handled by effective treatment. Embarrassment and stigma oftentimes keeps people from seeking rehabilitation help, thus only continuing their addiction. Another common barrier between addicts and treatment has been financial resources, but more barriers have been removed through broader insurance coverage. It is uncertain if the Affordable Care Act will be repealed with a new Administration taking office in January. “We have made progress. how do we keep that progress going? A key part is making sure people have insurance coverage,” commented Murthy.
If informative papers like the Surgeon General’s do anything, hopefully they inform millions of people and motivate enough of us to do more about his problem. If not, the reality is that any one of us could be the next to lose a loved one to addiction – something which nobody should have to experience and is preventable.
If you have a friend or family member who is battling an addiction to drugs or alcohol, contact Genesis House today and find out more about how we can help.