Prescription Drugs

What Does Addiction Have to Do With Pain?

You may have heard how pain medication such as opioids, are causing many to become addicted. However what does addiction have to do with pain? Aren’t these prescription medications meant to help people? The truth is much more complex than you realize.

For years physicians have prescribed painkillers to help their patients for very legitimate reasons. For example:

  • Recovering from an injury, such as a broken bone.
  • Coping with a serious illness, like cancer.
  • Struggling with chronic pain, such as back pain.
  • Bearing with migraine headaches.

The pain from these problems can be devastating; severely limiting or preventing people from working or even enjoying life. Thus, medications such as OxyContin, Vicodin, and Demerol became a popular solution. This is because these drugs seemed to help with pain management and reducing symptoms. However, these medications were also highly addictive.

What Does Pain Have to Do With Addiction?

The answer to this question lies in the chemical makeup of your brain. When any opiate drug is introduced into the body it makes its way to the brain via your bloodstream. Once there the chemical attaches itself to receptors in your brain that are sensitive to opiates. This activates the reward sensations that people experience when taking the drug, or doing other pleasurable activities such as eating or having sex.

The problem is that over time your brain develops a tolerance for the medication, and wants more. Thus greater amounts are required to achieve that same level of pleasure as before. This causes you to want obtain either more of the same drug or different drugs (such as heroin) in order to experience those pleasure sensations. For those who struggle with pain these drugs can be lifesaving-at first. However, as they gain a tolerance to the drugs they become dependent on them. Thus, you become addicted to a powerful chemical substance.

What does addiction have to do with pain? Pain is a gateway for people who may have serious medical problems that are looking for relief. Yet, they become trapped in a downward spiral of addiction. However, despite the seriousness of this addiction, there is hope. Substance abuse treatment can help you to break free from the grip of opioid addiction.

Are you ready to get started? Call us today at 800-737-0933 to begin your journey to recovery.

prescription drugs for older adults

I Need My Pain Medications, But I Want To Get Off of Them and Be Free But How?

When you have been in chronic pain, it can severely impact all aspects of your life. Trauma and injuries often necessitate pain medication. Any surgeries you may have had might have led you to need pain medication as well. Over time, pain medications, particularly opioid based medications, can lead to dependence.

When you become dependent on pain medication, if you stop taking the medication you will experience symptoms of withdrawal. This can happen to anyone who has relied on pain medication in order to relieve debilitating symptoms. Unfortunately, in addition to withdrawal symptoms, you may also experience a rebound of intense pain while you are detoxing from the pain medication. This can make it almost impossible to stop using on your own.

If you have found yourself experiencing withdrawal symptoms and rebound pain, you will need professional help from addiction specialists in order to recover from your dependence. The first step in your recovery will involve detoxing from the medication. During this period of time, you will need to be supervised so that the symptoms of withdrawal are minimized. Our addiction professionals will be able to provide supportive care during detox so that your concerns are heard and your needs are met.

How Can You Avoid Relapsing?

After your initial detox period, a longer stay in one of our facilities may be necessary. The longer you allow yourself to remain in treatment, the better your chances are for long term recovery. If you are experiencing a return of pain because you have stopped your medication, we will need to come up with a plan to manage your symptoms so that you will not relapse.

During your stay in one of our facilities, you will have opportunities for various therapies. Individual counseling can help you learn how to cope with stresses and triggers in your daily life without the use of addictive medications. You will be able to talk about your experiences and feelings which can help in your recovery. Group therapy may be helpful as well. It can be extremely empowering to know that you are not the only person who has struggled with addiction issues. You can also learn from others who may be further into their recovery about what is working for them, what they have learned, and what kinds of things have caused problems during their recovery.

If you or a loved one is currently struggling with an addiction to pain medication, call our addiction counselors today to learn about what we can do to help. We are here for you 800-737-0933

Having a Conversation With Your Union About Needing Drug Detox

Even though anybody who is struggling with an addiction to drugs and alcohol should seek treatment, many are afraid to do so. Addiction has been so villified in our culture that admitting that you have a problem feels like admitting that you have a terrible character flaw. This is especially true when it comes to the workplace. Drug use is grounds for disciplinary action in many jobs, so we can understand if you’re afraid to ask for time off to check into a drug rehab center.

Realistically, you should have nothing to fear from your employer if your drug and alcohol use hasn’t caused any serious problems at work. After all, people are allowed to take a leave of absence if they’re recovering from an illness or injury, and an addiction is no different from any other illness. However, you still might run into problems if your employer happens to be less than sympathetic about your situation. Fortunately, you might still be in luck if you are a part of a union that will fight for your right to seek treatment and keep your job.

What Your Union Can Do For You During Substance Abuse

While there is no guarantee that your union will be able to help pay for your detox or ensure that you are compensated for any wages that will be lost while you’re away from work, it does help to have them on your side. Before you seek treatment for your addiction, contact your union representative to find out how they can help you. At the very least, they will be able to stick up for you and ensure that you will be able to return to your job once you’ve completed your detox. Depending on the type of health insurance you have through your union or your employer, some or all of your detox and treatment may even be covered. When you do have this conversation with your union, explain the situation in as much detail as possible. If you haven’t had any disciplinary issues due to your substance abuse, make that clear. Even if you have had issues with your employer in the past, let your union know that it was due to your drug and alcohol use, and that you are checking into a rehab center to become clean and improve your job performance.

Whether you are a member of a union or you simply want to be free of your addiction once and for all, don’t hesitate to contact Genesis House at 800-737-0933 if you have any questions.

3 Reasons To Go To a Treatment Center in Lake Worth

For every person who has struggled with addiction to intoxicants, there there may come a time when using drugs or alcohol no longer seems worth the trouble of reaching a euphoric “high.” The truth of it is that being addicted is just too high a price to pay for a few moments of intoxication and escape from reality. This is the moment when the addicted person decides to commit to sobriety, and enter a recovery center that can help them start a new life.

The good news is that there is quality treatment available in Lake Worth, Florida, in the Palm Beach area. There are many great reasons to seek treatment in Lake Worth. Here are the top three:

A Personalized Plan

Every client who seeks treatment in Lake Worth will be given the attention of a counselor who understands their situation, and who can give a full assessment of the client’s needs. An individualized treatment plan will be developed that will address those needs and what the best course of treatment is. The assessment will include a mental health workup, to assess the role that mental health problems play in the addiction, and to make this a key part of the detox treatment, as other prescribed medications may be in the client’s system along with intoxicants.

Family Involvement

At Lake Worth, the role of family plays a key part in a client’s recovery treatment plan. Family members, as well as the addict, are impacted by addiction, and it’s important to have the whole family involved in the recovery process, so support can be there from all sides, from each family member.

A Comfortable Place To Recover

Clients who seek treatment in Lake Worth can stay in a rehab facility that offers private rooms to rest in between counseling sessions and treatments. Having a private room to rest and relax in allows each client to have a place to call their own while they go through the many challenges that accompany the commitment to sobriety. Along with this private place to enjoy peace and quiet, treatment in Lake Worth can also offer other great resources, like yoga classes, massage, and delicious meals.

When it’s time to commit to a path of sobriety, consider all the caring and the quality resources offered by the centers in Lake Worth, and call for a consultation right away 800-737-0933

Why 24 Hour Nursing Staff is Critical During Your Detox Stay

Detoxing from drugs and/or alcohol is an extremely difficult, but necessary, phase of the recovery process. In fact, treatment cannot truly begin without this first step of the road to recovery. The physical addiction and side effects of it must first be addressed in order to begin working on the psychological aspects. During detox, patients will experience a series of physical symptoms, including pain, muscle ramps, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, anxiety, and insomnia. A variety of complications can present themselves during this challenging period, and utilizing the supervision of staff trained in the matter will only serve to make you as safe and comfortable as possible.

Nurses’ Role in the Detox Process

After a personalized assessment, taking individual circumstances and physical factors into account, detox program nurses take a blood sample in order to determine if there are or will be any drug-induced medical complications or other health issues. This assessment step made by the medical team is crucial for developing a personalized treatment plan. Throughout detox and treatment, your medical status and symptoms are monitored closely by the nursing team under the supervision of an MD. Depending on the substance that you are battling addiction from, medications may need to be prescribed, in order to manage withdrawal, and this can only be done by experienced, licensed medical staff.

Care, compassion, and, above all, experience are critical elements for a successful intervention and detoxification process. Detox is challenging, and having supportive and knowledgeable medical staff to assist in the process is crucial for patients at this time. Nurses who work in drug detoxification and rehabilitation centers have seen the challenges, trials, and tribulations firsthand and can offer a realistic understanding of the problems that you face when going through recovery from addiction. This invaluable experience enables them to not only deal with medical complications efficiently and effectively: it also gives them the opportunity to offer psychological and emotional support to patients as they cope with perhaps some of the most difficult and physically draining days of their lives. The knowledge and experience that this line of work has provided them with allow them to offer guidance and hope for a new and healthy lifestyle in the initial phase of recovery.

The road to recovery begins with a single step. If you are ready to make it, contact a counselor today at 800-737-0933

Will Detox Program in Florida Really Help Me Get Clean And Stay Off Opiates?

Seeking treatment for opiate addiction can seem daunting and leave those struggling with addiction feeling lost and helpless. The first step toward recovery is learning your options and deciding on a course of treatment. Any opiate rehabilitation program will begin with the necessary first step in the process of getting clean: detoxing from the substance.

Of all of the steps in the process toward getting clean and recovering, the detoxification process is surely one that can raise fear. You may have heard about both the physical and mental challenges that come about during detoxification, and it’s important to accept and expect them. A counselor or doctor can walk you through the different phases of detoxification and physical withdrawal and what symptoms to expect in order to remove the element of surprise and alleviate apprehension as much as possible.

Detox should be undergone under the supervision of trained staff at a medical facility or recovery center. The process can take several days, and it’s best to have staff medically managing the intense withdrawal symptoms as well as monitoring both your physical and mental state throughout. When appropriate and necessary, the overseeing medical staff may prescribe various medications to assist with the withdrawal symptoms, the most common being methadone.

What Comes After Detox?

Detoxing alone does not cure a person from addiction. While it does provide the body with the opportunity to clear itself of dangerous substances, detox does not address the psychological, emotional, and social aspects of a person’s opiate addiction, and it’s important to recognize that these factors are often even more critical that the physical aspect. In order for recovery to be productive and long-lasting, behavioral issues, triggers, and environmental factors need to be identified and coping skills need to be learned.

This post-detox treatment can be conducted in both inpatient and outpatient settings, though round-the-clock inpatient programs tend to produce better results. By having 24-hour access to care, you are given the physical and psychological support to address any issues that may arise during this trying time. Stays can last anywhere from 30 days to many months, depending on you and your dedication to and participation in your treatment progress.

If you’re ready to make the first steps toward sober living free from opiates, we can help. Contact one of our counselors at 800-737-0933 to start your journey toward recovery today.

Does Naltrexone Actually Help Curb Addiction Cravings?

When fighting diseases of addiction it is necessary to use every tool available in order to prevent relapses from occurring. Traditional methods of recovery like individual counseling and group therapy will always be necessary in order to teach individuals how to live a life free of drugs and alcohol. In addition to these traditional methods, there are medications available to help curb cravings and enable recovery.

Can Naltrexone Help Me?

Naltrexone is a once-daily medication that is used to curb opiate and alcohol cravings and prevent relapse. It is an opioid antagonist which means it binds to opiate receptors in the. This blocks opiate-based drugs like heroin or oxycontin from producing its euphoric effects when taken. In alcohol addicts, it has been used to counteract cravings for alcohol and can also block its effects if alcohol is ingested. It is thought that naltrexone inhibits the release of endorphins when alcohol is consumed.

Individuals in a recovery program who take naltrexone have an increased chance of long-term recovery. Opiate addicts know that if they take naltrexone, even if they leave the facility to take drugs, they will not get the high they were used to. This can prevent relapse in patients and lead them to stay in treatment longer. The longer a person remains in an inpatient treatment facility the greater their odds of being successful. The naltrexone gives the patient time to learn about their addiction, what types of stressors and triggers they should avoid, and what kinds of coping strategies they can use in order to remain in recovery.

Naltrexone is effective but it does have drawbacks. Individuals taking naltrexone will not be able to feel the effects of opiate-based pain medication which can be problematic in the event of an accident or traumatic injury. However, the effect of naltrexone gradually wears off within a twenty-four hour period.

Opiate addicts who take naltrexone and then decide to stop may have increased sensitivity for a period of time to opiates. If the person relapses, this can lead to a much lower tolerance to opiates and cause a fatal overdose. However, this is the case when tolerance is lowered among recovering addicts who have not taken naltrexone as well.

Other opiate addiction recovery medications like methadone and suboxone, are replacements for illicit opiates like heroin. However, these replacement medications are opiates themselves and users can develop an addiction to them as well. Naltrexone is not an opiate and is nonaddictive. It can be stopped at any time without worrying about the effects of withdrawal.

Naltrexone will never replace the need for other therapies, but it is an effective weapon in treating addictions. If you or someone you know could benefit from taking naltrexone, call our counselors today to ask about its benefits. Call today 800-737-0933

Why Does Heroin and Other Opiates Cause Constipation?

Opioids and opiates are drugs that depress your central nervous system. This means your breathing and other bodily systems slow down. But opioids are notorious for causing constipation. Why is this?

Your gastrointestinal system also slows down when you take opioids. Not only this, your GI tract has receptors for the opiates that you produce naturally. The opiates and opioids that you take then bind to these receptors. This causes the usual contractions in your large and small intestines to decrease. Opioids may also paralyze your stomach so that it cannot process food the way it usually does. Food not only stays in your stomach, but opioids interfere with the enzymes needed to break it down. Even if everything else was working, opiates even reduce the urge to move your bowels. When you do try to move your bowels:

  • The feces are hard, dry and painful. This is because the longer it takes for the stool to pass through your large intestine, or colon, the more water your body absorbs from them.
  • You have to strain at stool.
  • Even when you do have a bowel movement, it feels incomplete. There is actually a word for this: tenesmus.

The constipation that happens when you take opioids can occur at any time when you are taking the drug. It also doesn’t go away over time like other side effects, because you GI tract doesn’t adapt to the drug the way the rest of your body does. Indeed, the longer you take the drug, the worse your constipation gets. Moreover, the usual remedies that help normal constipation do not work well when you are constipated from opioid use.

Complications of Opiate Caused Constipation

The complications of constipation caused by opioid use is rarely life-threatening, but can be very uncomfortable, and degrade your quality of life. Common complications include:

  • Hemorrhoids, which occur when the veins in the rectum or anus dilate and fail due to straining.
  • Diverticulosis, which are tiny pouches in the wall of the large intestine. If these pouches become inflamed, it can lead to a condition called diverticulitis. Diverticulitis can be serious.
  • Fecal impaction, which happens when a large amount of hard stool simply cannot be passed. This is often accompanied by a watery discharge from the rectum, nausea and malaise.

Call Genesis House for Help

If you need detox for your opiate use and its complications, give us a call at Genesis House. Our number here is 800-737-0933

How Long Should I Be On Suboxone To Get Completely Clean?

Heroin is a dangerous drug derived from the opium poppy. It is illegal in the United States. Heroin is highly addictive. Drug rehab centers often use another drug, Suboxone, to help people break their heroin addictions. Read on for more information on Suboxone and its use in treating heroin addiction.

When you abuse a drug like heroin, your body develops a tolerance for it. This means that you must take increasing dosages of heroin in order to get the same high. When you attempt to quit using heroin, you experience withdrawal symptoms, including the following:

  • Feeling jittery
  • Vomiting
  • Getting chills
  • Muscle aches and pains

Suboxone is a drug that contains buprenorphine. Buprenorphine is used to treat not only heroin addiction but other opioid addictions, too. Buprenorphine, a partial agonist to opioids, produces a mild form of the effects of opioids. It basically fools the brain into thinking your opioid craving has been met, though it does not produce the same high. However, because Buprenorphine and Suboxone do not create the same high as opioids, Suboxone and Buprenorphine are difficult to form an addiction to. Naloxone, another component of Suboxone, works as an antagonist to opioids.

Length of Use for Suboxone

Suboxone is a drug that must usually be taken for a long time to promote opioid recovery. Because Suboxone is a partial agonist, it still allows people to form some opioid dependence. When addicts attempt to stop taking Suboxone, they need to taper their dosage under the care of a medical professional.

People who take Suboxone for a short period, such as a month, usually end up relapsing and returning to opioid abuse. Thus, Suboxone should be taken for an extended period. Taking it for six months to one year is the norm, and many people take it for even longer. However, every patient is different. A medical professional can monitor the patient’s progress and advise on how long each patient should take Suboxone.

Suboxone should be used only under the guidance provided in a professional treatment program or under the care of a healthcare professional. Rehab clinicians can administer the correct dosage, and Suboxone can also be prescribed by a doctor. By pairing Suboxone with other therapies, clinicians and physicians can help addicts fight their addictions. Call us today for help 800-737-0933

What You Should Know About Pain Pill Addiction- It Is Not Uncommon as You May Think

Pain pills or painkillers refer to a wide variety of drugs; however, the ones that are highly abused are opioids, sedatives, and stimulants. Hydrocodone, oxycodone, xanax, valium, and dexedrine are among the highly abused prescription pills. The effectiveness of these drugs makes them addictive. These pain pills work on the opioid receptors of your brain to numb pain and create an addictive high.

One of the tell-tale signs that you have a pain pill addiction is when your mind is focused on when you will take your next dose and whether your supply is sufficient. Pre-occupation with your pain medication may later cause you to exceed the doctor’s recommended dose. Eventually, you begin going to more than one doctor for the same subscription or going to other sources to replenish your medication supply. Afterwards, you will realize that your pain, the reason you were on the prescription pills, subsided a long time ago but you are still on pain meds. Before you know it, you are having problems with your personal relationships and your daily routine activities.

 

How Pain Pill Addiction Can Affect Your Body

Pain killer abuse is likely to affect different parts of your body. Opiates suppress your body’s capacity to breathe and interrupt the normal functioning of your lungs. Medical research has determined that opiate abuse is likely to cause pneumonia.

Pain pill addiction is also associated with constipation. Abusing pain killers will mean that one may need to use laxatives to facilitate bowel movement and this is likely to damage the sphincter or anus.

Prescription drug abuse can also affect your liver. Every drug you take is broken down and processed by your liver. Therefore, the liver can store toxins after the breakdown process. The most notable cause of liver damage is acetaminophen, a component in many prescription formulas. Drugs such as Lortab, Vicodin, and Percocet have high levels of acetaminophen.

Another devastating effect of addiction to prescription pills is rhabdomyolysis and kidney failure. Rhabdomyolysis occurs when a person lies completely immobilized after abusing pain killers to the point of becoming comatose. The addict’s tissues start to disintegrate and the chemicals produced during this breakdown pour into their blood stream and begin damaging other organs. This is one of the main causes of kidney failure. Damage of the heart may also occur, including heart attack.

Many people manage chronic pain using prescription medication. A high percentage of these people unknowingly slide into pain pill addiction. If you experience any of the above tell-tale signs of addiction to prescription medication, you need to consult a doctor before your problem becomes a tragedy. If you are ready to put your addiction problem behind you, call Genesis House at 800-737-0933 and trust us to get your life back on track.