Author: Justin Mckibben
Xanax causes a decrease in anxiety through an increase in GABA (a neurotransmitter) in the brain. This increase in GABA calms and soothes an excited mind, and can be very helpful to some who suffer from forms of severe anxiety. However, over time, the brain responds to this increased GABA activity by lowering the amount of available GABA.
At the point where the brains GABA activity changes drastically, the patient will need to take larger doses of Xanax to feel the same effects.
Because the medication creates a euphoric feeling, especially when used in excess, the drug is classified as a schedule 4 medication, which is any drug with some probability for abuse. Xanax when used for too long, or when used in excess, can create a physical and psychological dependence. This dependence can develop into a serious addiction that includes some very serious withdrawal symptoms, making Xanax addiction detox very important.
Xanax Detox: Withdrawal Symptoms
Xanax works very fast and has a relatively short half-life, which causes withdrawal symptoms to begin very rapidly once the individual discontinues their use, which is why a Xanax addiction detox program is so important. Most people will start to feel withdrawal symptoms within 12 hours once they stop using Xanax, and those symptoms will peak within 3-4 days. Residual and long-term symptoms of withdrawal can even last for up to months at a time.
Going through a medical Xanax addiction detox program is so important because of the severity of some of these symptoms, especially in combination with other substances such as alcohol which will increase the discomfort. The most common withdrawal symptoms from Xanax include:
Xanax Detox: Medical Assistance
It is possible to detox safely off of Xanax quickly while under medical supervision, which is why anyone trying to overcome Xanax addiction should attend a medical Xanax addiction detox program. Even with the prescription of symptom controlling medications, a quick detox is very tough and uncomfortable, so a drastic detox should never be attempted without medical supervision.
The most dangerous and destructive of these side effects is convulsion. Some of these convulsions can actually be life threatening. While the more common side effects are typically psychological, and are very unpleasant. Going through a medical Xanax addiction detox will allow the individual a safer detox period while monitoring the intensity of symptoms and treating them accordingly.
Problematically, many people take Xanax to manage symptoms of a metal health disorder, and when they are experiencing withdrawal from Xanax, these mental health symptoms are increased dramatically, which can also create problems for a Xanax addiction detox patient. Going through a Xanax detox at a drug treatment facility will also support the individual in this way as well.
Xanax Detox: Treatment Programs
Many Xanax addiction detox programs through drug and alcohol treatment centers consistently provide the highest level of professional patient care. The industry is full of staff with extensive experience with related fields of therapy and holistic care, and with the health insurance industry.
In order to create the most influential and positive changes necessary for Xanax addiction detox the centers actively offer personalized detox and aftercare programs. It is very important to give patients a variety of treatment methods and supports to choose from.
With different attributes such as strong medical staff to assist in a comfortable transition from active substance abuse, to several levels of personal and professional therapy, and a specialized team dedicated to designing an aftercare program that meets the specific and important elements of a long-term recovery plan. The Palm Partners Xanax addiction detox program is here to provide the highest level of drug and alcohol treatment and holistic healing for those who are struggling. Xanax addiction detox may not be the most pleasant, but with the right Xanax addiction detox treatment program, it can be a healthy and life changing transformation.
For a substance like Xanax that creates such a dangerous physical dependence, it is critical that someone trying to escape Xanax addiction to attend a medical treatment program for Xanax addiction detox. Detoxing does not have to be what stands between someone who is suffering and a full recovery from this paralyzing and fatal disease. If you or someone you love is struggling with substance abuse or addiction, please call toll-free 1-800-951-6135. We want to help. You are not alone.
Author: Justin Mckibben
Addiction is not a word that is limited to drugs and alcohol. Addiction is a powerful and illusive illness that comes in several forms, which include behavioral health issues that sometimes can fly under the radar as a result of being more socially acceptable.
Gambling addiction is an impulse-control disorder, because there is a complete lack of control over the urge to gamble once it takes hold. Those who struggle with gambling addiction are in the grips of a progressive illness, and a recent study is being done in New Jersey that hopefully can make some notable conclusions regarding the way it affects the general public.
New Money in New Jersey
Since November 25th 2013, internet gambling has become legalized in the state of New Jersey. With internet gambling in the state of New Jersey beginning to generate a considerable amount of discussion, not to mention a lavish payout of more than $102 million in increased tax revenues. The new gambling income has shown a significant amount, though also considered less than the $200 million predicted by the New Jersey Department of the Treasury and Gov. Chris Christie.
Eight other states have legislation pending that would allow Internet gambling. Delaware and Nevada began offering some online gambling this year, but New Jersey is considered the first true test case because it allows a full range of casino games, not just poker, and its much larger population allows for a more in-depth look at how the internet gambling market will be able to flourish.
This new industry has created a growing community of Internet gambling in New Jersey, and that community was launched by the state as a means of aiding the state’s faltering casino industry, which has been in decline since 2006.
Four casinos in Atlantic City, including the Trump Plaza, have actually been closed for business this year. Internet gambling is also legal in Delaware and New Jersey, though neither state has launched any studies to determine the impact of the decision, positive or otherwise, of increased access to betting on its constitutes.
New Study in New Jersey
Rutgers University is now making a considerable attempt to measure the impact of Internet gambling on addictive behaviors. Funded by the state Division of Gaming Enforcement and health department, the three-year study will generate an estimated cost of around $1.2 million, but Lia Nower, professor and director from the Center for Gambling Studies at Rutgers’ School of Social Work, says it will allow researchers to,
“identify what type of person chooses this very private form of gambling, who develops problems, and how those problems are different from other forms of gambling,”
The survey will initially interview:
- 1,500 adult New Jersey residents by phone
- 2,000 residents via the Internet
The interviews will collect information from the citizens about their personal gambling behavior and Internet gambling. After which the Center for Gambling Studies at Rutgers’ School of Social Work will then provide four yearly reports to Governor Christie based on statistical analysis of betting behaviors.
The Underlying Issues
With the results of this new study still pending, and the market not making as much money as initially anticipated, the question may be does this new internet gambling industry have a potential to create a surge in gambling addiction, and if not, what about internet addiction?
Even if the revenue is not there on the books of these online casinos, is this new wave of internet gambling going to help contribute to the growth of the underlying issues here, which are not only gambling addiction, but internet addiction as two separate behavioral health problems that in this capacity can feed off of each other.
More is being done elsewhere so that internet addiction is being taken more seriously while ‘Generation D’ texts, tweets and tags its way through social media and online entities. With gambling addiction already being taken into consideration, what more will be discovered about the developing habits attached to these from the New Jersey statistics?
Impulse-control disorders like compulsive gambling addiction usually go hand in hand with other addictions or compulsions, and it is a wonder if online gambling will also contribute to internet addiction. Often times those who have a gambling addiction can also abuse alcohol and other substances, all to deal with more personal issues. If you or someone you love is struggling with substance abuse or addiction, please call toll-free 1-800-951-6135
Author: Justin Mckibben
Drunk driving is just the worst. Seriously, the impact that drunk drivers have on those they endanger and harm by getting behind the wheel while intoxicated and subsequently causing accidents is so severe, and can quite often be avoided.
Anyone who has been arrested a few times or knows someone who has is familiar with breathalyzers. There is even one installed in vehicles of chronically reckless people who have one too many DUI’s that tests them for being drunk before they can even start their engines.
With all these concepts in mind, it is no wonder how even more innovations have started to pop up that are actually more geared toward prevention rather than punishment. Breeze is a new breathalyzer app designed for keeping drunk drivers off the street, and will hopefully make a bigger difference in this digital age.
Breeze Checks BAC
The new Breeze app is actually Bluetooth compatible, and when using the individual would blow into a portable breathalyzer which pairs to a smartphone. If Breeze measures the user as over the legal limit and determines it’s not safe to get behind the wheel, the app places a call to a public transportation service.
Brian Sturdivant is the vice president of marketing, and in a recent interview he stated that the Breeze device will help drinkers make the right decision, and even assist them in getting connected to the safer alternative. Sturdivant said,
“This is really about consumer awareness and being able to make the right decision and learn more about yourself.”
This amazing and possibly life-saving app will be available as of the 1st of November at Best Buy for just $100. Breeze works by measuring blood alcohol content (BAC) with an electrochemical fuel cell sensor. Results from this BAC test are transmitted to the app via the breathalyzer. The program even calculates and transmits an estimate of how much time it will take the individuals body to metabolize the alcohol in their system.
Taking the risk prevention tactic even a step further, Breeze also syncs with Apple’s HealthKit platform and uses this to keep tracks of the user’s BAC as well as other vital signs.
Calling For Back Up
While similar products are currently on the market, Breeze stands apart by its ability to get the user home safely. The higher BAC reading triggers a “get home safe” screen with a button that launches the smartphone ride service’s app. Uber is the transportation company that allows customers to request a ride right from their phones, and with the help of Breeze they are sure to be bringing in a lot more business.
But the app is not limited to the Uber service however. While Breeze can be programmed to automatically contact Uber, it can also be set to use the review site Yelp to find local cab companies to hail a ride. Or even to access a user’s phone contact list so they can call a friend for a ride. Once more, if the individual doesn’t want to go home straight home, then Breeze has the ability to locate a hotel.
Brian Sturdivant also spoke very adamantly about how Breeze will let users know exactly where they stand and whether or not they should drive, acknowledging the common issue that people will forget how much they have had to drink, or insist that they should be fine to drive.
“It’s 10:30, do you really know how many glasses of wine you’ve had or where you are? This allows you and others to quickly check and [decide] should I Uber home, should I take a cab or am I good to go?”
Hopefully this new app will actually avert alcohol related accidents and other serious injury, death and DUI’s by letting the average individual make an attempt to monitor their drinking, and going the extra mile beyond what other similar functions do by calling for help wherever you are. Although if you need an app like this enough that you are paying $100 for it, maybe you are too intoxicated too often, and you should consider a more serious problem.
Drinking and driving is by far one of the most dangerous and careless things people can do to endanger not only themselves, but the lives of others. And sometimes if you find yourself facing the repercussions of drunk driving, it means there is a much more serious issue at the root of the problem. If you or someone you love is struggling with substance abuse or addiction, please call toll-free 1-800-951-6135
Author: Justin Mckibben
The strange chemical concoctions that have been created and marketed as ‘safe’ marijuana alternatives have become more popular and apparently, more dangerous due to the stories piling up about overdoses and other health problems involved with these toxic blends of mystery herbs and chemicals. So is the spice of life playing out be in be part of a larger problem with a potential synthetic epidemic?
What Is ‘Spice”
These synthetic drugs go by several names to redirect attention and disguise new formulas of this hazardous illicit drug. Names including:
These and other aliases for synthetic marijuana or ‘Spice’ all cost only around five dollars apiece. That’s just 5 bucks for a bag that has enough of whatever mystery mix in it to get more than a few people intoxicated, or would you say poisoned. Of course the different packages are decorated in a way to appeal to young people.
One of the biggest problems that has been presented by this whole situation is that even though synthetic cannabinoids are technically illegal in most states, the constant manipulation of the molecule that mimics the effects of THC keeps it so that by the time the authorities have time to weed out the new threat, they can simply re-label and re-market it. And even worse is that is has been made available in head shops and in gas stations.
The Power is in The Poison
Poison control centers throughout America are no stranger to ‘Spice’ or any of the current variations of the stuff, because in the last two years there have been about 8,000 “exposures” with help requested after someone smoked K2, or Spice, or Mr. Nice Guy.
JWH-018, JWH-073, and HU-210 are just a handful of the countless chemicals found in the colorful sachets, and many of these are believed to cause seizures, psychotic episodes, tremors, and hallucinations.
Thankfully there have been some strides made to change the tide in the fight to stop the mass production and young consumption of these drugs. The DEA has managed to classify some of these chemical components and drugs as Schedule 1 narcotics. This new rating means they have no medical purpose and are only ever used for drug abuse.
Again the war has not yet been won, because of outlaw chemists often based in areas like China, twist the molecules in an effort to stay ahead of legislators, just to keep the stuff on gas station shelves. The molecule used as an active ingredient changes along with the law, the leaves in the bags are merely a carrier for it, which makes it easier to create and conceal from the law.
What is the easiest way to track the spread of K2? Emergency room visits. 11,400 people were admitted because of K2 nationwide in 2012.
Spice is often marketed as potpourri and because it does not come up as cannabis on a drug test is has become increasingly popular. There are special tests for its metabolites in urine, but they are expensive and used infrequently.
Places from prisons to your local high schools are swamped with the drug. Especially in the last ten years the substance was monetized, starting the war between legislators and chemists, but the concept of synthetizing marijuana has been around for years.
Having said all this about the numbers game, one very interesting conclusion became apparent in regards to that same tracking of where and how K2 damage has spread through hospitals. Looking at the problem state by state, it becomes immediately obvious where it no longer exists, and the irony of this should not be lost of anyone. Two states basically have no more problems with K2. Care to guess who? That would be Washington and Colorado, where marijuana has been legalized for recreational use.
Some people would take that as a sign that legalizing marijuana is the lesser of two evils in a situation such as this when facing the devastation that could come from a potential synthetic epidemic. Either way the damage is being done consistently by these K2drug manufacturers who have cornered the market with a very cunning and crooked business tactic.
In every aspect of this drug the makers are manipulating the consumer. From hiding the real danger behind it, to calling it a safer and legal alternative to another popular drug, to appealing to younger crowds, and even reaching older crowds. This may not be an easy fight to get through, but it is a fight that needs to be fought for the safety of the community. The first step may be to fight to get these drugs out of our gas station shelves and away from our schools. If you or someone you love is struggling with substance abuse or addiction, please call toll-free 1-800-951-6135
Author: Justin Mckibben
Pregnancy and addiction are not as uncommon as many people may think, and quite often when an addict becomes pregnant they desperately want to quit or get help, but is afraid to do so. But the process of pregnancy and early motherhood is only more reason to step into a new life. Sadly not enough mothers get the treatment they deserve.
According to a recent nationwide survey, of pregnant women aged 15 – 44 years old:
- 6% used alcohol
- 3% used tobacco
- 6% used prescription medications
- 3% used illicit drugs
Using alcohol or drugs while pregnant in any capacity can have harmful effects on the unborn child of an addict. Risks and possible outcomes of using drugs or alcohol while pregnant include:
- premature delivery
- low birth weight
- neurological and congenital problems
- increased chance of SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome)
- developmental delays
- higher likelihood for neglect or abuse
- future mental health problems
- future substance abuse problems
Taking the risky results into account, there has been research indicating that comprehensive drug treatment, holistic healing, and prenatal care for mother and child significantly improves birth outcomes and the child’s future development. Contrary to what some believe, pregnant women who are dependent on substances of abuse to have the ability to deliver healthy babies, regardless of what stories like the 1990’s ‘crack-baby’ scare will tell you.
Trends of Substances
Some experts insist that smoking cigarettes during pregnancy—90% of her women do—carries much more risk than any illicit drug use, and an estimated two-thirds of babies exposed to opioids during pregnancy end up having withdrawal with half of them needing medication treatment.
Trailing the information back to 1999, the most popular drugs among admitted pregnant women were:
However, from the 2013 Treatment Episode Data Set (TEDS) information, it was estimated that among pregnant admissions:
- Alcohol abuse decreased from 46.6% in 2000 to 34.8% in 2010
- Drug abuse increased from 51.1% in 2000 to 63.8% in 2010
Executive Director at the University of North Carolina (UNC) Horizons substance abuse treatment program for pregnant women Dr. Hendree Jones stated that according to research 40% of the women who are treated there are dependent on opioids, mostly prescription Vicodin and Oxycontin, as well as a rise in use of IV heroin. They also still see cocaine, at about 30-33%, alcohol at about 30% and bit of activity regarding benzodiazepines, marijuana, and poly-substance abuse.
Many pregnant women need intensive treatment, but few treatment programs provide the necessary aftercare. Many traditional residential programs don’t want the liability of treating pregnant women. Pregnant women face increased societal stigma, fear they will lose custody of their children, lack access to gender-specific treatment, lack insurance coverage for aftercare, and lack childcare and/or transportation.
The National Survey of Substance Abuse Treatment Services (N-SSATS) reported that in 2011, of the 13,720 substance abuse treatment facilities in the US, only 12.7% of these were programs for pregnant or postpartum women, and only 3.9% had residential beds for their clients’ children. So many pregnant addicts who are seeking treatment feel they do not have as many options, or may be shut down enough that they almost give up because they aren’t aware of the other opportunities out there.
Detox and Medications
There are a lot of myths surrounding medically-assisted treatment, including detox, opioid replacement medication, and NAS. At the end of the day, a proper treatment facility will provide you with a clinical staff to help resolve any conflicts with medications.
Where we stand today there’s limited data for detoxing from opioids, but we do know that it is possible to safely detox from opiates during pregnancy during any trimester, if it’s done in a controlled, slow and gradual taper. Recent research strongly supports maintaining pregnant women on opioid-agonist pharmacotherapy throughout pregnancy and the postpartum period, so it is often suggested that a pregnant mother be given a monitored and medicated detox.
Some centers specialize in treating pregnant women dependent on opioids, and they will send mothers to an off-site hospital only when they need to detox from alcohol or benzodiazepines. These are the most dangerous drugs to withdraw from because of the risk of seizures.
Stigma is perhaps the biggest challenge facing women who are pregnant with a history of drug use, especially when it comes to punishing addicts instead of treating addiction as a medical disorder. That’s probably exemplified best in the new law passed in Tennessee that would charge a woman with aggravated assault if she tests positive for drugs during her pregnancy. Most doctors agree that this is a health issue—and one of primary concern for pregnant women, most of whom don’t have access to comprehensive drug and prenatal treatment; punishing women is not the answer.
Aftercare is a big problem, too. Making sure that the mothers comply with continued care after treatment can make or break their chances of lasting recovery. Along with this, the number one biggest challenge is not having a unified continuity of care for after they leave the program. And yes, that’s including gaps in the mothers insurance coverage, finding long-term housing for mothers and their babies, and continuing psychiatric care.
Trends of Treatment
As if there was not enough fear involved with drug or alcohol addict parents, Tennessee Pregnancy Criminalization Law would charge a pregnant mother with aggravated assault if they have a pregnancy complication due to the use of illegal narcotics or if the child is born addicted to or harmed by the narcotic drug.
Unfortunately, primarily due to things like fear-mongering and stigma the number of pregnant women who actually receive treatment for substance abuse is shockingly low. According to data from the 2013 Treatment Episode Data Set (TEDS) pregnant women between 15 to 44 years who were admitted to substance abuse treatment facilities typically ranged between 4.4% and 4.8% from 2000 to 2010.
Once accepted to a program, the process of treatment is not all that complicated. A caseworker will do a six-pronged evaluation upon enrollment of the new mother into a program that aims to review the whole picture:
- Physical factors
- Psychological factors
- Readiness for treatment
- Social factors
- Level of intoxication or withdrawal stage
- Access to recovery support
Following an initial assessment, a patient is directed to the appropriate level of care. With options like detoxification in a hospital and then residential treatment for the most intensive needs, or outpatient for less severe addiction, a pregnant mother can be placed in a position where she has every opportunity to make a change in her life that could change everything for her unborn child.
As it was said before, we as a people put too much stock into the stigma of addiction, and that alone can attribute to hundreds if not thousands of deaths or birth defects of children related to drugs and alcohol simply because the mother was too afraid to reach out and find help. We as a society need to recognize the disease for what it is, and start working together to change the way we address those who suffer. If you or someone you love is struggling with substance abuse or addiction, please call toll-free 1-800-951-6135