Every day, thousands of men and women all over America lose their lives to heroin addiction. In every state, there are families and communities suffering from the loss of friends, neighbors and loved ones. Heroin addiction is more prevalent than ever before in our country.
At the same time, there are people every day trying to give up using heroin and other opioid drugs. Some people try to do it on their own, and very few of them succeed. Many end up relapsing due to the pain of withdrawal and the intense dependence on this life-threatening drug.
But there is hope. With professional help and safe, medically assisted heroin detox many people have the opportunity to build a strong foundation for recovering from their addiction.
Let us look at what you need to know about heroin detox when you reach out to get help.
Heroin Detox: Understanding Drug Dependence
Like most drugs, excessive and prolonged abuse of heroin leads to a medical condition called Substance Use Disorder (SUD). But a crucial part of the development of a SUD is drug dependence, and there are two particular kinds of dependence that people should understand.
This is about how your body adapts to substances. When the cells of your body can’t function without a substance, that is a clear indication of physical dependence. The body gets used to the presence of a chemical over time, so when the chemical is no longer present the body is forced to regulate itself.
The body also stops producing certain chemicals in the brain naturally because it gets them artificially through drugs. However, once you stop using the drugs the body is no longer producing what it needs.
Physical dependency becomes pretty apparent when you try to stop using heroin without any medical help. When you try to stop using abruptly you experience extremely uncomfortable physical withdrawal symptoms because of the imbalance in the body.
Psychological or emotional dependence is a result of the changes a drug creates in the mind. It is defined as a compulsion or perceived obsession for the substance. So while the individual may not be experiencing intense physical withdrawal, they may be psychologically impaired by the abrupt absence of a substance they have adapted to.
Instead of developing healthy coping skills, most heroin users tend to rely on the drug for dealing with emotional or behavioral issues. If they suddenly remove the drug, they are left defenseless against their issues.
If someone relies heavily on drugs for feelings of pleasure and stimulation, removing the drug may cause them to feel they cannot be happy without it. This is impacted by the drugs chemical interaction with the brain.
And at the end of the day, physical addiction can have psychological side effects, and vice versa. That is why heroin detox should not only offer medical assistance, but also therapeutic resources.
Heroin Detox: Withdrawal Symptoms
Suddenly stopping heroin without any medical assistance is called going “cold turkey” and it throws you almost immediately into withdrawal. “Cold turkey” is not just uncomfortable, it is dangerous. These heroin withdrawals manifest both physically and psychologically, and the symptoms can range in severity and frequency. Some examples of heroin withdrawal symptoms including:
- Extreme anxiety
- Excessive yawning and sneezing
- Runny nose
- Cold sweats
- Cramp-like pains
- Involuntary spasms in the limbs
- Severe muscle and bone aches
Trying to go through withdrawal from heroin without help is extremely difficult. Some people find it impossible due to the severity of their symptoms. Many people find themselves trapped in a cycle or relapse and attempts to recovery because withdrawal symptoms can be so hard to overcome.
This is why heroin detox is so important. This level of care can help ease you off of heroin and other opiates gradually with the use of medications specifically designed to assist with heroin withdrawal symptoms. Having a safe and experienced medical staff makes this process much more manageable. With a physically and emotionally healthy environment, you can start to establish a comprehensive recovery plan.
Heroin Detox: Safe, Medical Care
Heroin detox should always consist of two phases: evaluation and stabilization.
During this first stage of heroin detox, the individual will be given an assessment in order to determine the best course of treatment. It will include obtaining information about:
- What drugs they have been using
- The presence of drugs in their system
- What quantities of drugs have they been using
- How long have they have been using these drugs
- Other medications
- Co-occurring conditions
This is done through a drug screen, along with any further information you provide during the assessment. Because programs for heroin detox are in a medical setting, the results of your drug screen and information disclosed during your assessment are strictly confidential just like any other medical information is.
During a heroin detox program, the stabilization stage will utilize all the information you provide during your initial assessment to design an effective detox plan. Taper medications are often used in order to wean you off of heroin in both a safe and comfortable way. Detoxing from heroin and other narcotic opiates like prescription painkillers should always be done in a professional and effective manner.
There are many kinds of medication designed to help combat opioid addiction. Carefully consider your options with the medical addiction specialist to ensure you are getting the best possible care. Be sure to provide them with accurate health information for the best results.
Quality care during stabilization should also include providing therapeutic resources for the emotional and psychological side effects. Having support for your mental and emotional well-being is also extremely important for relapse prevention. It lays the groundwork for developing healthy and sustainable coping skills. With the right care, you can take this time to design a personalized recovery plan that is right for you and addresses all of your specific needs to help you be more successful in recovery.
Are you struggling with a dependence on heroin? Are you trying to quit but have failed on your own? Consider reaching out to the caring and compassionate professionals of Palm Partners Recovery Center. If you or a loved one is struggling with heroin abuse or addiction, please call toll-free now. We want to help.
CALL NOW 1-800-951-6135
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.
Were you prescribed pain meds after surgery or a serious illness? Are you now trying to stop taking the meds, only to find that you begin to feel sick, depressed, and anxious? This is a sign of drug dependence and it is very common, especially with powerful narcotic painkillers that doctors prescribe post-surgery or for certain illnesses and pain conditions. Because of this there are programs for medical detox for pain meds after surgery or illness, or for a chronic pain disorder.
Physical Dependence vs. Addiction
Being physically dependent on a medication does not necessarily mean that you are an addict. You may be physically addicted but, there is a difference when it comes to that and someone who has the disease of addiction.
Prescription painkillers are opioids, meaning a man-made version of an opiate – such as heroin, which comes from a plant. The way opioids work is this: once taken, your brain recognizes them as chemicals and they attach to tiny parts on nerve cells called opioid receptors. After using opioid pain meds long-term, these drugs actually cause changes in the way brain nerve cells work. This happens to everyone, even people who were prescribed pain meds for a legitimate medical reason. The nerve cells become used to having opioids around, so that when they are taken away suddenly, you experience a lot of uncomfortable and even painful reactions. These are known as withdrawal symptoms. A detox for pain meds after surgery or illness can treat your withdrawal symptoms and keep you comfortable through the process.
Someone with the disease of addiction is also physically dependent on a drug, or drugs, such as pain meds. When someone has a drug addiction, it means that they continue to take the meds until they build a tolerance and then seek more, even if it means getting drugs through illegal means, although this is not always the case. People with addiction will also continue to use drugs despite the negative impact it’s having on their lives, such as loss of job, relationships, and financial and legal troubles. For these folks, a detox from pain meds after surgery or illness is also beneficial, although they will need to continue their rehabilitation through other programs, such as inpatient and intensive outpatient.
Detox for Pain Meds After Surgery or Illness: What to Expect
A detox program that treats the withdrawal symptoms that result from coming off of narcotic pain meds has two phases.
Detox for Pain Meds After Surgery or Illness: Evaluation
The first step in the detox process takes place when you first arrive. You will meet with an Intake Specialist who will ask you questions about your situation: what drug or drugs you are taking, how much, and how you take them (whether you swallow them as pills, crush and snort them, or inject them). All of this information is kept confidential and is protected by HIPAA laws that are a part of federal legislation that protects an individual’s medical information.
Detox for Pain Meds After Surgery or Illness: Stabilization
This process takes anywhere from 4 to ten days, sometimes a little longer, and consists of you being tapered off of the pain meds, usually with the help of other prescribed medications. You will be monitored by a full professional medical staff for the rest of your stay. Your vitals will be taken twice daily and your meals will be provided for you.
By the end of your detox from pain meds after surgery or illness, you will be feeling much, much better. If you have a chronic pain condition that will continue some kind of management, including medication, the medical doctor at the detox will work with you to prescribe a non-narcotic alternative as well as make suggestions as to other therapies that can alleviate your pain, such as physical therapy, acupuncture, and chiropractic care.
If you have become dependent or addicted to prescription pain meds and are looking for help to get off of them, an opiate detox such as a detox for pain meds after surgery or illness can offer you this help. Call an Addiction Specialist at toll-free 1-800-951-6135 today, we are available around the clock.
Drug Rehab for Couples: Substance abuse, Physical Dependence, and Addiction
Substance abuse and drug addiction, including alcohol addiction (alcoholism), are both medical conditions that are chronic, meaning life-long, but that can be successfully treated and long term recovery is then possible. Drug rehab for couples is specifically designed to treat you and your significant other for these medical issues.
Substance abuse means that you are using a substance more than it is prescribed or in ways other than how it’s supposed to be taken. For example, if you are prescribed painkillers and you crush them and snort them instead of taking them orally. Although alcohol is a legal substance, it too can be abused.
When you have become physically dependent on alcohol or other drugs, it means you have built up a tolerance, needing more of the substance to achieve the same effect you used to experience in the beginning. Physical dependence also involves the experience of certain symptoms, known as withdrawal symptoms, when you suddenly stop or “cut back.”
Drug and alcohol addiction involves both substance abuse and physical dependence but is even more intense and all-consuming. Couples who are addicted to alcohol or other drugs will often fight over drug-related issues, turn to crime to support their habit, and begin suffering the negative consequences related to drug use. These include legal issues, such as being charged with possession or DUI; social impact, such as losing friends and family members; financial woes, such as job loss and even loss of their home.
Drug Rehab for Couples: Why Go to Rehab
If you and your spouse experience any of the above conditions, you should consider going to a drug rehab for couples. It can be difficult enough trying to quit on your own. When your significant other is also using, then you are both more likely to keep using, even if you both want to quit.
For one, withdrawal symptoms, which are both psychological and physical, can be so uncomfortable and even painful that one or both of you might ‘cave in’ and decide to get more of your drug of choice to make the pain and discomfort stop.
Another reason you should consider rehab for couples is that families that are affected by addiction tend to also be affected by codependency. What that means is that there is an unhealthy dynamic of dependence on one another. When two people are codependent there is a greater likelihood of failure to quit.
Drug Rehab for Couples: Pros
Couples who are using drugs need family therapy as well as individual therapy. At drug therapy for couples, you will get both of these services. Though you and your spouse will likely need to continue attending therapy for a while after returning home, the healing can begin in a safe place – rehab – for both parties. Working with a therapist who specializes in substance abuse treatment can really help both of you get the help, support and encouragement you need to work through the difficulties that come with new sobriety.
Drug Rehab for Couples: The Bottom Line
The main purpose of rehab is to help you get medical and psychological treatment for drug addiction. It is not the goal of rehab to save your relationship/marriage; it’s to save you. Nothing can save a relationship except for the two people in it who are willing to do what it takes to salvage it. That means that rehab cannot make you or your spouse go get therapeutic care, stay sober, attend therapy, or go to codependency groups, etc. The action and work has to be done by the two people in the relationship, drug rehab for couples can get you headed in the right direction by helping you heal and be clear-headed. The effort and willingness must be there in order to save your relationship or marriage.
Is your spouse or significant other struggling with substance abuse or addiction? Are you both struggling? Going to drug rehab for couples can be one way to start over. Call an Addiction Specialist today at toll-free 1-800-951-6135.
Author: Justin Mckibben
The idea of a non-addictive painkiller is one that has the potential to change the way people across the country are treated for serious injuries or illnesses, and to have a powerful impact on the community at large in regards to addiction and the alleged ‘epidemic’ of opiate abuse across the board. With so many health risks associated with painkillers, and the fact being that many people in recent years have become physically dependent or completely addicted to narcotic pain medications such as OxyContin or OxyCodone, the hope for a new medication that can just as affectively treatment pain without the adverse side-effects is an exciting concept.
New Painkiller Research
Several scientists at Stanford University stated this past August that they may have discovered a new and potentially safer alternative painkiller to help treat individuals suffering from severe health complications or injuries. These doctors have been actively researching the many connections between the consumption of alcohol and heart health. During this research the doctors realized an enzyme they’d been working with on these experiments may play a critical role in pain reduction.
The work is still in the earliest stages of testing. All the research with this new medication is currently being done using only lab mice, and we are still probably a reasonable time away from human adaptation and application. But the researchers say the compound appears to be non-addictive and would not include with it the same heart health risks and bleeding risks that other narcotic painkillers do.
Given the pain and suffering caused by painkiller addiction, this is some very welcome and exhilarating news. When considering the recent situation regarding ‘pill mills’ in America, and the growing population who struggle with painkiller abuse, the future seem a little brighter with breakthroughs like this becoming a possibility. Not to mention the fact that a massive number of people addicted to painkillers start off being prescribed the medication, and many end up resorting to other opiates including heroin.
Painkiller Abuse in America
Experts don’t have an exact statistic on how many people are currently addicted to prescription narcotic painkillers in America today. Despite that, all experts can agree that abuse and addiction regarding painkillers and other pharmaceutical drugs it’s on the rise. In response to patients and pain advocacy groups in the past few years many physicians most likely became much less restricting when they were prescribing opiate painkillers. There has been a noticeable spike in prescriptions for opiate painkillers over the past decade, and this increase most likely created millions of potential drug stashes in house-holds and pharmacies across the nation.
In regards to teens abusing opiate medications, painkillers now come second only to marijuana in popularity. That is scary idea, given the fact that a vast majority of opiate users eventually move on to abusing more potent and dangerous substances such as heroin. In fact almost 1 out of every 10 high school seniors reported to have taken the narcotic painkiller hydrocodone (Vicodin) within the past year. So it is no coincidence that many of the parents of these students attest to currently be taking the medication too. Vicodin and its generic variation was the most-prescribed drug of any kind for much of this decade, and has probably been the catalyst to much of the prescription substance abuse in the past few years.
Other Progress in Painkillers
As of this past May scientists at Scripps Florida in Jupiter also say they have discovered a substance that promises to kill pain almost as effectively as morphine and OxyCodone, but without the side effect of addiction. The analgesic is called Conolidine and it has been worked on with lab mice and seems not to have side effects at this point.
Conolidine is found in tiny amounts in the plant crepe jasmine, a shrub that grows in Florida and Asia and has been used in Chinese and Thai medicine. Scientists long had speculated that crepe jasmine could contain opiates, but the Scripps’ research showed that the analgesic compound in crepe jasmine is actually not an opiate.
This specific synthetic compound might be just as effective for treating pain as morphine, it does not appear to act on any of the receptors associated with opiates. In fact, it misses most of the major neurotransmitter receptors completely. This suggesting it may be highly tuned towards relieving pain while not producing multiple side effects. While still in the early stages of development, further characterizations of Conolidine may suggest further development as a human therapeutic for the treatment of pain.
With new innovations and reforms taking form in the field of medicine and addiction, there is new hope for the addict who struggles with severe addiction to opiates or other prescription painkillers. While this new mystery medication has some time before it will be available, the help needed to begin recovery from addiction to painkillers is here now to help those who are suffering begin the process of escaping that dependence. If you or someone you love is struggling with substance abuse or addiction, please call toll-free 1-800-951-6135