Alcohol abuse is a type of addiction, and—like other drug addictions—its causes are fairly complex and often related to emotional or mental distress. Drinking alcohol may be a temporary escape from personal problems or the pain of mental illness, but drinking can easily spiral out of control and become a chronic problem. Below is a closer look at how an individual may develop patterns of alcohol abuse stemming from casual use.
Alcoholism can be passed down in families genetically or environmentally. If you have a parent who has a history of alcohol abuse, you are more likely to harbor dependence yourself. In addition, families who have been affected by alcohol... Continue reading →
Mistaken beliefs abound about drug addiction. Friends, family members, and even addicts themselves may believe these misconceptions, which may make it harder for those with a chemical dependence to seek addiction treatment. The following myths highlight a few of the fallacies that surround drug addiction and treatment for it.
Addiction is a sign of weakness.
Many people believe that an addiction is simply a bad habit that those afflicted by it refuse to give up. However, drug addiction is not the same as nail biting or knuckle cracking. Individuals who abuse drugs or alcohol have a physical dependence on it, which causes them to use it again and again. Studies also indicate that alterations to the brain ... Continue reading →
When a person takes prescription drugs for reasons beyond medical needs, the negative repercussions can be major. The stimulant, depressant, and opioid components of prescription drugs can significantly affect the body. When taken too frequently, in overly high doses, or without a doctor’s approval, prescription drugs can cause considerable harm to an individual’s physical health and the safety of those around him.
Some people become addicted to opioids and depressants because of the calming effect they can induce. Opioids can reduce the sensation of pain and relax the body. Depressants can calm racing thoughts and promote a more peaceful state of mind. If taken without need, though, these drugs can... Continue reading →
Treating a heroin addiction outside of a medical rehab center is often ineffective, because heroin is a highly addictive drug that has traumatic effects on the brain. Without medical support and intervention to manage the process of withdrawal, breaking the bonds of a heroin addiction can be incredibly painful both mentally and physically. Here is an overview of why heroin addictionis so powerful and challenging to overcome.
Chemical effects in the brain
Heroin mimics the effects of endorphins in the brain, but it is much more powerful than the chemical endorphins naturally produced in the body. Therefore, the user feels a euphoric high that he or she has never previously experienced. While it is a misconception that heroin users become addicted after their first use, the... Continue reading →
The first step in addiction treatment is recognizing the problem. Often, it is not the addicted person who identifies the issue, but their loved ones. Are you concerned that someone you love may be abusing drugs or alcohol? The sooner you spot the evidence, the sooner treatment can begin. This infographic, designed by a chemical dependency treatment center, explains the signs of addiction. If your loved one exhibits these symptoms, it may be time to seek help. Will you please share this information so all families facing addiction know when treatment is needed?
For adults looking to overcome an addiction and improve their overall health, support groups can be an indispensable source of companionship on the road to recovery. These community gatherings help to bring those with similar challenges together to share their experiences and strategies in a safe and comfortable environment.
Communicating with people who are going through similar experiences can reduce feelings of anxiety, loneliness, and isolation and empower participants to accomplish their goals together. Many find the support group atmosphere to be a place where they can get a better idea of what to expect from their journey to healthier living.
Las Encinas Hospital is proud to offer the adults in the Pasadena community a variety of recovery lectures and support groups... Continue reading →
Drug and alcohol addiction are often linked with mental health problems. The relationship between substance abuse and mental health issues is complex, but each tends to reinforce the other in a dangerous cycle. Some chemical-dependency programs take a dual-diagnosis approach to treatment that addresses both the addiction and the underlying illness to give their patients the best chances of staying sober. Read on to learn what you need to know.
Addiction-Mental Illness Connection
There are a number of ways in which substance abuse and mental illness can be linked. Addiction may be a symptom of an untreated or undertreated mental illness. Someone suffering with symptoms of a mental illness may turn to drugs and alcohol in order to cope. A mental illness may also impair... Continue reading →
While outpatient programs are helpful for some people, many individuals have a better chance of overcoming addiction if they select an inpatient substance abuse program. An inpatient program eliminates the possibility that a patient will relapse and use drugs while in the program. It offers a controlled, structured environment staffed by healthcare professionals who understand the unique needs of those suffering from addiction. At an inpatient treatment facility, a patient receives a personalized treatment plan that utilizes an interdisciplinary approach.
When a patient checks into an inpatient substance abuse program, he or she receives comprehensive psychiatric and medical evaluations. The patient benefits from being in a safe, monitored environment during detoxification and... Continue reading →
Do you suspect that your spouse has an alcohol problem? If you have noticed in increase in the number of drinks he has each night or the number of bottles he purchases at the store, you may be right. If his drinking behavior has caused him to become more defensive, agitated, or withdrawn, he may have an abuse or addiction issue. As difficult as it may be to confront your spouse about his problem, to let it go may result only in greater physical and emotional damage to him and your family. The following guidelines can help you approach your spouse about his abusive habits.
Refrain from Accusations
Alcoholic individuals can become hostile about their behavior without provocation. Therefore, try to... Continue reading →
Could your parent or spouse be suffering from prescription drug abuse? Knowing how to recognize the signs of substance abuse can help you seek treatment for a loved one before he suffers more physical and emotional damage to himself and others. Prescription drugs can induce a myriad of effects on users from mania to confusion to fatigue. However, you can often detect similar patterns in behavior regardless of the nature of the drug. For instance, if a loved one seems excessively defensive about his prescription drug usage, he may have an abuse problem. An insistence that he must see more physicians for the purpose of getting additional drugs is another indication of chemical dependency. Should he experience abrupt changes in demeanor, it could be the effects of his stimulants or... Continue reading →