The Battle of Drug-based Drug Abuse Assistance

For a long time, there has been a stigma attached to illicit drug use. Many organizations, such as AA (Alcoholics Anonymous) and NA (Narcotics Anonymous) maintain that for someone to be ‘clean’, they cannot take any drugs, even medications, unlike south Florida drug rehab. However, these groups formed nearly 100 years ago, before the medical and psychological communities had much understanding about what later became termed Substance Use Disorder (SUD).

In these groups and others like them that base their treatment methods on the framework that has been administered for over a century, the baseline of being ‘sober’ is absolute; if an alcoholic participates, for instance, in a church’s communion ceremony where a tiny thimble of wine is given for the use in the religious ceremony, that person is considered to have failed, even if that is all they ingest and only in the context of the tradition.

It is this mindset of the old guard that has long reaching consequences which are impeding more effective and well researched treatment options. One of these newer treatments actually involves what is called Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT). Currently, many news headlines that are reporting on the nation’s increasing opioid use, which largely has been contributed to by prescription drug addictions to medications like oxycontin, have also been reporting on MATs such as naloxone, which when administered properly, can prevent overdose but also can increase the effectiveness of behavioral therapy.

It’s often misunderstood how these drugs actually work. When being an absolutist in the AA and NA camps, taking any drug for a prolonged period of time is considered an addiction. The problem with this diagnosis is that neither AA nor NA actually administer any kind of medical and psychological treatment based on research and instead rely on faith-based treatment measures which emphasize spirituality to overcome substance use disorders. The stigma that has resulted, helped in no small part by the War On Drugs that has been ongoing since 1971, promotes and absolutism to sobriety which doesn’t take into effect what symptoms are being treated, exactly.

Substance use disorder, or addictions, are often categorized as life threatening and inhibit normal functioning in day to day life. For instance, back to the example of the patient who is deemed a failure for participating in communion, that single sip does not inhibit in any way their day to day functioning and if it doesn’t result in a return to abusing alcohol, then there actually is no failure to manage the addiction at all. With MATs, often times the drugs are taken over extensive period of time, giving the appearance of a new addiction, but if those drugs are allowing a person to remain productive in society and resist the substances that do lead to personal physical and psychological harm, then it is, indeed, actively treating the addiction itself.

It’s time to have an honest public discussion about what the real goals of addiction treatment should be and redefine the outdated and unresearched methodologies of a century old religious approach.

South Florida rehab centers utilize up to date modern treatment methods on patience seeking treatment for substance use disorders. Call 1st Step at (866) 319-6126 for treatment options include detox in Broward County.

Avoiding Addiction

A lot of times, the travel of information is simultaneously fast as a Google search and as slow as chronically poor Google search results. In greater media, there is a very heated battle between misinformation and verified accurate information, in addition to biases of media sources. As the old saying goes, ‘knowledge is power’ and in some ways, having bad information is worse than having no information at all. When it comes to south Florida rehab centers, the entire situation can be confusing.

Consider the belief many people have of addiction being something that only happens to ‘bad people’ who make ‘bad choices’. For this person, their worldview says they’re immune to developing any kind of addiction, even the one that currently chews up the headlines, opioid addiction. This person who goes around believing that only criminals and morally bankrupt scum can become ‘junkies’ may, for instance, get into a car accident on their way to work, finding themselves in a situation in which they require painkillers…the very painkillers they believe they cannot be addicted to by their very fact they believe they are not a criminal.

In this way, bad information has put this person more at risk, giving them a false sense of security and arrogance around what should always be treated with care and caution; prescription drugs. The actual way addiction works has nothing whatsoever to do with whether a person is super nice and holds the door open for their peers at a store, attends church or donates to charity. Most importantly, it also does not require any specific age, gender or income level to take hold of a person, making it no different than someone being prone to a car accident itself. Even the most cautious of drivers may find themselves on the phone with an insurance agent.

Avoid addiction requires understanding addiction prior to being put into situations where it’s more likely to happen. How do you avoid an accident if you don’t understand how certain accidents happen? Even if the accident-prone activities or tendencies are known, there’s not any guarantee of avoiding the situation.

For this reason, it’s highly important to be cognizant not only of things like prescription drugs, and whether they have addictive properties, but also things like alcohol use patterns. Also highly important is to maintain a connection to your own mental wellness. Depression and ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) are two common connections found in substance use disorders. For ADHD people especially, it often happens that a person doesn’t even know they have ADHD because they’ve never been diagnosed. With depression, often this will go undiagnosed as well or manifest in conjunction with substance abuse.

Unfortunately, healthcare in the United States involves walking a minefield of misinformation and maybe more importantly underfunding at the federal level. As a consumer product, healthcare and knowing your own condition is required to be a personal responsibility and considered part of being an ‘informed consumer’.

Until this changes, do what you can now to avoid conditions which may put you at risk as well as understanding how to identify possible signs of addiction after they may have already developed.

If you’re in Pompano seeking drug rehab with options for residential detox, give First Step Behavioral Health a call at (866) 319-6126.

Psychological Tolls of Substance Abuse

Just about anyone reading this can remember a time in which they didn’t realize they were being a complete belligerent jerk, where they were so short sighted in their actions they either severely embarrassed themselves or even were just a pig headed fool that permanently ruined a relationship. It was possibly over something nearly meaningless. If you haven’t experienced such a situation, maybe therapy for sociopathy should be considered as no one is perfect and we all make mistakes, especially if you’re an alcoholic considering alcohol rehab in Pompano.

For someone suffering from substance use disorder, this event may even be daily. Recovering from addiction comes with it a necessary requirement to really come to grips with the history that has developed around the abuse of a substance. This may be quite obvious with, say, an alcoholic who becomes an obnoxious loudmouth who says very venomous things randomly while intoxicated to people they would normally never think of being mean to, or less obvious such as secretly stealing funds from a relative or friend to make purchases to support their addiction. Regardless of what these actions may take the form of, they will exist and they can make recovery very difficult to even face.

Just thinking about hypotheticals, just imaging trying to reconstruct friendships and make apologies for, say, yelling at friends because they don’t understand what you do, that grass is always red and then learning later you were the one in the wrong, this can be a devastating experience. It can completely change the entire context of your existence with just a single realization. It is worse when you realize that there could be a large portion of events like this, where arguments and dramatic relationship altering events happened that can’t even be remembered, have to be faced possibly for the first time.

These unfortunate actions that result from substance use disorder can be even more savage psychologically to examine and repair. A parent coming to grips with the damage they may have done to their child’s psyche can often be a weight that will forever hang around their neck. Likewise, everyone is someone’s child and having to face one’s parents to apologize, even for the smallest mistakes, can be like chewing on glass, and so having to face a parent after terrible actions under the influence of a substance might seem undoable.

For those who have friends, family, children, parents, whomever that is trying to recover from their condition of substance use disorder, it’s okay to be angry and hold the person accountable, but be sure that you consider the opening paragraph here, that we are all fallible, no one is perfect and that it’s likely that you already have done something that didn’t even have the layer of substance abuse to blame. Offering understanding and forgiveness and support for a recovering addict can be the difference between not only their success at staying clean, but also at simply repairing a real connection that maybe should have never been severed.

Detox in Broward County as part of south Florida alcohol treatment is available for those seeking treatment. Call First Step Behavioral Health at (866) 319-6126.