The effects of drug or alcohol abuse are never isolated to the person with the addiction. The families of addicts are tremendously affected by their loved ones’substance abuse. Inadvertently, families can even help extend the cycle of addiction by failing to confront the problem. Just as families play a role when their loved ones are abusing drugs and alcohol, they also figure prominently in rehab and recovery. If someone in your family is getting help for addiction, here are some ways you may be called on to help:
When your loved one is in a residential substance abuse treatment program, it allows your family time for self-assessment of your own behaviors. Were there things you were doing that enabled the addiction to continue? Can you see any... Continue reading →
Addiction is not a solitary disease. When you love someone who is struggling with chemical dependency, you also carry the burden. One of the hardest things to face may be the fact that your support may be worsening your loved one’s addiction. If you’ve been enabling your loved one to continue with his or her addiction, stopping can be difficult. However, changing your enabling behavior may force your loved one to change as well. Here are ways in which you can ease your enabling tendencies and instead urge your loved one to face his or her substance abuseproblem.
Recognize Your Behavior
Just as your loved one may not be able to see his or her own addiction, you may not be able to see that you have been an... Continue reading →
Entering a substance abuse program is the first step on your journey to regaining health and control. It takes tremendous courage to face chemical dependency head-on, but the rewards can be great. If you are considering seeking help for your addiction, here are some tips to help you prepare.
Learn the Clinic’s Approach
You’ll be more successful with substance abuse treatment when you are comfortable with the approach the center takes. Ask questions about subjects such as group therapy sessions versus one-on-one treatment, and make sure that the facility you choose offers programs that seem like a good fit for you. One important thing to consider is whether dual-diagnosis treatment is... Continue reading →
Barbiturates are depressant drugs that are sometimes prescribed for seizure disorders. However, they have a high potential for abuse; those with a substance abuse problem may take the drugs inappropriately to attain the feeling of relaxation they cause. Unfortunately, an overdose of barbiturates can be a life-threatening situation. Keep reading to learn how to identify the differences between barbiturate intoxication and overdose, and what substance abuse treatmentoptions are available.
Barbiturate use causes both acute symptoms and long-term effects. If your loved one has inappropriately used barbiturates, he or she may display poor judgment, slow speech, and slurred speech. He or she may move differently because of sluggishness and problems with... Continue reading →
Methamphetamine, or meth, is a central nervous system (CNS) stimulant that has a very high potential for abuse. It produces a temporary, addictive euphoria, followed by a “crash” and severe depression. If you know someone who might have a substance abuse problem, encourage him or her to seek addiction treatment. The detrimental physical effects of meth are quite pronounced and can be life-threatening.
Damage to the Brain
When a substance abuser initially takes meth, he feels a rush of euphoria as the brain releases a large amount of dopamine, which is a neurotransmitter that affects the brain’s “pleasure” centers. With continued substance abuse, the dopamine receptors are destroyed. A person who is chemically dependent on meth is no longer able to feel pleasure. The... Continue reading →
Methamphetamine is a highly addictive, stimulant drug. Those who engage in meth substance abuse develop dangerous side effects involving the body and the mind. Meth acts on the central nervous system to release a cascade of dopamine, causing feelings of pleasure. Over time, however, the dopamine receptors in the brain are destroyed, leading to potentially permanent damage to the brain. Since meth is so addictive, users will need to undergo an intensive substance abuse treatment program.
Substance abuse exacts a heavy toll on the user’s body. Users tend to suffer ill effects from insomnia, malnutrition, and weight loss. They run the risk of damage to the liver, kidneys, and lungs, and they are at an increased risk of life-threatening events such as stroke... Continue reading →
When you check into an inpatient substance abuse treatment center, you’ll have a medical evaluation. You’ll discuss your typical daily diet with the doctor and your nutritional needs. Substance abuse often robs the body of much-needed nutrients. In fact, alcoholism is a leading cause of nutritional deficiencies. If you abuse alcohol, you are particularly prone to deficiencies in B vitamins. If you take stimulants, you may have electrolyte imbalances, and if you use marijuana, you may have problems with being overweight.
During your inpatient substance abuse treatment program, you’ll follow a well-balanced, low-fat diet that includes fiber, complex carbohydrates, and protein sources. You may also be advised to take vitamin and mineral supplements. Following a healthy meal plan not... Continue reading →
Binge drinking is a common problem, particularly among those between the ages of 18 to 34 and 65 or older. Binge drinking is defined as consuming enough alcoholic beverages to cause a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 or higher. One of the most significant health problems that can occur is alcohol poisoning, which is life-threatening. It also increases the risk of high blood pressure, liver disease, stroke, and neurological dysfunction.
A person who binge drinks is more likely to engage in risky behavior, such as unprotected sex. This increases the risk of acquiring sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and an unwanted pregnancy. When an expectant mother binge drinks, her child may be born with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders. In addition to these health consequences, a... Continue reading →
Methamphetamine, or meth, is an extremely dangerous drug that can lead to addiction after a single use. A primary reason why meth is so highly addictive is because it changes the way the brain perceives enjoyment. The drug prevents users from experiencing joy, save for when they are high. This creates an overwhelming desire to continue using meth. A meth addiction can also cause extensive brain damage. It elicits several adverse behaviors, including mistrust of and volatile behavior toward others. It may cause hallucinations in addicts as well. As meth prompts these dangerous activities, it also destroys the brain’s essential processes. Critical functions such as remembering facts and learning new information become more difficult when the brain has been exposed to meth.
If you... Continue reading →
Methamphetamine is a very dangerous and highly addictive substance that leads to significant and possibly permanent side effects for the user. However, if that user happens to be pregnant, the child will suffer as well. Methamphetamine crosses through the placental barrier, resulting in prenatal exposure to the child. The drug tends to cause low birth weight, premature delivery, and placental abruption.
When the child is born, doctors are likely to notice abnormalities or defects of the heart and brain. As the child grows older, parents or guardians will likely observe neurobehavioral problems. Meth use during pregnancy has been linked to increased stress, anxiety, moodiness, and depression. The child is at a higher risk of being diagnosed with attention and aggression issues,... Continue reading →