Inpatient Drug Rehab Centers in Texas: Why Florida is a Better Choice

If you’re a Texan and you’re ready to address your substance abuse issues, it’s good to check out various drug and alcohol rehabs in your home state, but don’t rule out treatment beyond your borders. Keep in mind that even the best inpatient drug rehab center in Texas may not be the right choice for you, simply because it’s too close to familiar surroundings 

As an alternate option, Florida is home to many highly regarded rehab centers. Regardless of your price range or your specific needs and goals, you’re likely to find a suitable Florida treatment center. Closer isn’t always better, and many people find that a change of scenery and getting away from the worries and stresses at home helps them focus on distraction-free recovery. 

Long-Term Drug Rehab in Texas: 28 Days Isn’t Always Enough

The common complaint that treatment doesn’t work is a myth, as many people in long-term recovery will attest. Often, the reason rehabs fail isn’t a problem with the quality of treatment, but simply that the standard treatment length of 28 to 30 days isn’t enough. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), treatment of fewer than 90 days is of limited effectiveness, and many people require even more. Addiction is a chronic disease, and some people may need some form of support, such as medication or support groups, for years. There are no quick fixes for substance abuse and addiction. 

All too often, the result is a revolving door of expensive rehab stays followed by yet another heartbreaking relapse. The frustration, disappointment, and sense of failure are so great that many people give up on treatment altogether. If you are looking at inpatient drug rehab centers in Texas, make sure you find one that offers a variety of substance abuse program options.

Benefits of Traveling Out of State for Substance Abuse Treatment

A local drug and alcohol treatment center in Texas may be appealing because it is nearby , but staying close to all that is familiar may be a little too convenient. Unless you are mandated to spend a specific length of time in rehab, you can walk out the doors any time you feel frustrated or discouraged. When you’re close to home, you’re within shouting distance of familiar places and old friends, and the lure to fall back into your old ways are hard to resist. 

However, if you need to hassle over getting a plane ticket or bus pass, the idea of leaving treatment may not be quite so attractive. It’s normal to have ups and downs during treatment, and things typically get much better as time goes by, and you begin to feel more secure in your recovery program.

It can also be a tremendous help to put miles between yourself and unpleasant situations at home or work. If you can lay those stressful issues aside for a while, you can focus your energy on the difficult work of recovery.

Drug Addiction Treatment: Texas vs. Florida

Time is of the essence, and once you’ve made the all-important decision to enter treatment, you want to get started as soon as possible. The last thing you want is to be at the bottom of a long waiting list, but at the same time, don’t sign in to the first drug and alcohol treatment center that has an opening. 

The decision to enter treatment is one of the most important decisions you’ll ever make. Treatment isn’t a one-size-fits-all proposition, so take time to think about your particular needs and wants, and then shop around. Here are a few things to consider

How About Those White Sand Beaches? 

Texas and Florida both have their share of sunshine, warm weather, and glorious coastline, but consider this: the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) reports that Florida is home to a whopping 8,436 miles of coastline — plenty of space for treatment centers and treatment communities. With only 3,359 miles of coastline, drug and alcohol treatment options along Texas beaches are more limited. 

With plenty of magnificent white sand beaches and crystal clear, turquoise water, Florida beaches are ideal for rest, recovery, and reconnecting with nature.

The Cost of Drug and Alcohol Rehab Centers in Texas

High-quality, reputable drug and alcohol treatment is expensive, no matter where you go. However, if you’re looking for an inpatient drug rehab center in Texas that is low cost, you may be surprised that rehabs in Florida are reasonably priced.

Most Florida rehabs work with major insurance providers, so if you have insurance, call to be sure your treatment is covered. If you are uninsured, don’t be afraid to ask about payment plans and other cost-effective options.

Thinking About Travel Expenses

Flights from Texas to Florida are usually reasonable, and you can save money if you dig deep into travel websites. Traveling by bus is also an option, but may not work if you need to get to treatment quickly. MostFlorida  treatment centers will ensure you are safely transported from the airport or bus station if you let them know ahead of time.

Most Treatment Centers are Reliable and Conscientious

One word of warning: Beware of treatment centers that offer free airline tickets or other enticements. This type of underhanded tactic may be illegal if unscrupulous treatment facilities are paying middlemen (brokers) to bring in clients. Fortunately, most Florida substance abuse treatment providers are legitimate and will be open and above board about their programs and prices. 

Don’t hesitate to ask plenty of questions, including how long the center has been in business. Be wary if a your Texas treatment center is brand new, as a well-established rehab is likely to be more dependable. Also, ask if the center carries proper certification, and inquire about the level of education and training required for addiction counseling staff. An honest treatment center will take time to answer your questions, and will refer you elsewhere if their treatment isn’t suitable for you.

Are You Ready to Get Started in Treatment in Florida?

We’re here for you! If you’re ready to get on the road to recovery, give 1st Step a Call at 855-425-4846 or contact us here for more information  We’ll take time to answer all your questions and help you sort through your various treatment options. 

South Florida beach

Florida: An Affordable Alternative to Drug Rehab Centers in California

Are you looking into alcohol and drug  rehab centers in California? Before you commit to a California substance abuse treatment facility, take a moment to consider Florida for rehab instead. Florida is a perfect alternative to the west coast; similar weather, beautiful beaches, and quality treatment — at a more affordable price. 

The Cost of Drug Rehab in California

The cost of living in California is high, and the often outrageous price tag for drug rehab centers in California is a huge stumbling block for many people. Southern California is especially well known for its luxury treatment centers that roll out the red carpet for Hollywood celebrities, star athletes, or titans of the business world. California has the highest number of posh treatment centers in the country, many of which are located in trendy SoCal cities like Malibu, Laguna Beach, andHollywood Hills. 

Unfortunately, unless  you’re a person with money, power, and influence, the high price and exclusivity of many Southern California drug rehab centers may be out of reach. This severely lowers the available options for those looking to get into treatment quickly. In contrast, Florida has a large number  of treatment centers, and many rehabs in the sunshine state specifically focus on providing high-quality treatment at a price that won’t make you gasp.

Are Florida Treatment Centers as Good as Southern California Drug Rehab Centers?

The quality of substance abuse treatment isn’t always connected to the cost. Many Southern California drug rehab centers are notoriously expensive, not because the treatment is better, but because they offer a resort or spa-type experience. For instance, higher-priced rehabs offer an array of amenities such as personal chefs, private suites, gourmet dining rooms, horseback riding, or tennis. It isn’t unusual for a California substance abuse treatment facility to freely advertise its roster of celebrity clients.

All the perks are nice, but an expensive treatment center won’t get you on the path to recovery any faster than a moderately priced drug addiction treatment. Drug addiction treatment in California may be out of your price range, but if you’re committed to your recovery, a reasonably priced rehab in South Florida may offer precisely what you need. 

You Won’t Be Giving Up Sunshine and Beautiful Beaches

People love Southern California for the warm, sunny days, spectacular vistas, and sandy beaches, but if you’re looking for the best weather, Florida’s tropical climate is hard to beat. You may need to pack a sweater or light jacket during the winter, but be ready for plenty of balmy days all year round.

California vs. Florida for Drug Rehab: Questions to Ask No Matter Where You Go

How can you tell which rehabs are good, and which are substandard? The best way to do this is to ask a lot of questions. Whether you decide to travel to Florida, or attend a California substance abuse treatment facility, here is a list of several factors that you should consider when you’re choosing a rehab for yourself or a loved one.

Vetting Substance Abuse Treatment Centers

Staff at a quality rehab is knowledgeable, compassionate, and willing to freely share information. If they are unwilling to answer all of your questions, even if you make multiple phone calls, it’s probably not the right place for you. 

  • Find out if the treatment methods evidence-based, which means they have been carefully tested and backed by solid scientific research. Be careful about treatment providers that make lofty promises or offer miracle cures. Similarly, beware of gifts or other inducements, which may indicate some shady business is going on.
  • What types of drug detox programs does the treatment center offer? Will you be carefully monitored during withdrawal? Is a physician on staff? If the center doesn’t provide medical detox, can they refer you to a detox clinic or hospital if necessary? 
  • Does the rehab offer dual diagnosis treatment? This is an essential factor if you need help with conditions such as depression, bipolar disorder, or PTSD in addition to substance abuse. Staff at a dual diagnosis center should be educated, experienced, and able to help you with both issues together, not separately. 
  • Does the center offer medically-based treatment (MAT)? Medically based treatment, which involves traditional therapy in addition to certain prescribed medications, has proven to be effective for many people. 
  • Will your treatment be carefully planned with your needs and goals in mind? Beware of cookie-cutter treatment plans. Recovery isn’t a one-size-fits-all situation, and what works for one person may not work for you.
  • Does the center offer complementary or alternative therapies that are important to you, such as outdoor therapy, yoga, massage therapy, mindfulness meditation, or fitness? 
  • Ask if treatment length is flexible if your needs change. Research over the last few decades has proven that longer stays in rehab, often lasting at least 90 days or even longer, offers a higher chance of long-term recovery. The standard length of 29 days isn’t enough for many people.
  • Inquire about the price of treatment in Florida, then compare it to the cost of drug rehab in California and ask what insurance companies they each accept. If you aren’t insured, ask about payment plans or financial assistance programs. Be sure to let them know if you live out of the local area, as some insurance companies won’t cover treatment centers that are “out of network.”
  • Find out what types of programs are available; for instance, does the center offer gender-specific treatment or co-ed programs? If a 12-Step, spiritually-based program or family therapy is important to you, don’t hesitate to ask about them. Programs may also be geared toward specific populations such as adolescents or LGBT individuals. 
  • Will the treatment center guide you through the creation of an aftercare or relapse prevention plan? Some centers offer counseling sessions after completion of treatment, or they will contact you via phone if you live outside the area. Others have regular alumni events.
  • Ask about living conditions. While they don’t need to be fancy, the environment should be clean and comfortable. Many Florida treatment centers offer virtual tours on their websites, but an actual visit, if possible, is the best way to determine if conditions are suitable. 
  • What does a typical schedule look like? Will you have time for socializing with other clients? How about opportunities for solitude and quiet reflection? Does the center offer enjoyable group activities?

Learn More About 1st Step South Florida Rehab Center

Choosing a treatment center is an important decision that only you can make. First Step Behavioral Health in South Florida is a top-rated treatment center with a variety of program options and mental health services.

If you’re looking for help for you or a loved one, give us a call at 855-425-4846 or contact us here for more information. We’ll take the time to answer your questions and provide you any information you need that will help you in your search.  

pompano beach sunset

Looking for Drug Rehabs in New York? Consider South Florida Instead

If you’re tired of struggling, and you’ve decided it’s time to seek help for your substance abuse issues, pat yourself on the back because this is a monumental decision — probably one of the most important choices you’ll make in your entire life. However, before you look at rehabs in New York State, consider the potential benefits of traveling to South Florida for treatment. 

Inpatient drug rehab centers in New York are indeed closer to home and more accessible, but convenience shouldn’t be the driving factor when it comes to choosing the best treatment center. You may find it tremendously helpful to put a healthy distance between you and the old friends and familiar places. For many people, getting away from the responsibilities of work and home allows them to rest and focus on recovery. 

Why Treatment in South Florida may be a Better Choice over Going to Rehabs in New York State

There are several good reasons for traveling to South Florida over New York substance abuse treatment centers. Here are a few things to consider when making your decision:

The Weather in South Florida is Conducive to Healing

According to the Earl E. Bakken Center for Spirituality and Healing at the University of Minnesota, spending time outdoors is restorative. It can help with a variety of physical and mental issues, including depression, stress, muscle tension, and high blood pressure. Time spent in nature can also boost the immune system, bolster self-esteem, and improve impulse control. 

In other words, spending time outdoors is essential for our overall health and wellbeing, and sunny South Florida is the ideal place to reconnect with the natural world. It’s not surprising that South Florida rehabs attract people from across the nation, especially those who reside in dark, chilly northern climates. If you happen to be specifically looking at rehabs in New York city, adequate access to nature is going to be difficult to secure. 

Unlike New York, where the weather is less than perfect for much of the year, South Florida is warm and sunny year-round. The environment is ideal for rest and renewal, and most South Florida rehabs will ensure outdoor time is built into your days. Many offer outdoor recreation, swimming pools, and time for quiet meditation and peaceful walks on the beach.

Vitamin D and Health

Vitamin D helps keep our bones healthy, but that’s only the beginning. Studies suggest that vitamin D, also known as “the sunshine vitamin,” may help significantly with depression, respiratory illness, heart disease, high blood pressure, and cancer. 

If you’re from New York, you may have a difficult time absorbing enough vitamin D. The Harvard Medical School says residents of northern climates, where the skin makes minimal vitamin D from the sun, are at relatively high risk for vitamin D deficiency. The experts at Harvard also advise that 10 to 15 minutes of sun a few times every week can generate sufficient levels of vitamin D. However, the ideal amount of sunlight can depend on several factors, including your age and skin color. 

According to Addictions: Indiana University, vitamin D deficiency is linked to negative emotions, increased pain, and addiction. Although more research is needed, there are indications that vitamin D supplementation may boost the effectiveness of addiction treatment. If you live where days are gloomy and sunlight is in short supply, a rehab in South Florida may be just the ticket. 

Why Getting into a Detox Center in New York State May Prove Difficult

Detoxification is the process of removing toxic substances from the body. Unfortunately, withdrawal symptoms can be so miserable that some people are hesitant to begin treatment, and detox from some substances, such as alcohol and benzodiazepines, can lead to cardiac arrest or seizures. Consequently, when people finally do make the decision to get help, they often need to get into treatment right away.

Inpatient Detox Programs in New York are in High Demand

If you’re considering detox centers in New York State, keep in mind that inpatient detox is often more comfortable and safer than outpatient detox, and you’ll have support throughout the entire process. Unfortunately, getting into an inpatient drug treatment program in New York state can be difficult, since they are in high-demand. According to a WalletHub report, New York, Maryland, and Connecticut are tied as the states with the most people receiving substance abuse treatment per 1,000 drug users. Florida made the “best states” list for this category, as one of the five states ranking for the fewest people receiving treatment per 1,000 users.   

South Florida has many highly regarded detox centers. If your addiction is severe, your detox may take place in a medical detox facility or hospital, where your vital signs will be monitored around the clock. If you’re fearful, keep in mind that a medical detox facility can provide medications to help ease uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms such as pain, headaches, anxiety, depression, nausea, and vomiting. 

Medication-Assisted Treatment in South Florida

Like New York drug rehabs, ,many South Florida treatment centers offer medication-assisted treatment (MAT), which involves the use of FDA-approved medications in combination with counseling and other traditional treatment methods. The medicines are marketed by various brand names and are available in various forms, including tablets or pills, patches, liquids, injections, or implants. 

Methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone are commonly used to treat addiction to opioid drugs. All have proven to be safe and effective. The drugs have various purposes but generally work by blocking the effects of other narcotics, or by staving off cravings and other withdrawal symptoms. According to the National Institute on Drug Addiction (NIDA), MAT for opioid addiction decreases transmission of infectious diseases, overdose deaths, and criminal activity. 

Disulfiram (Antabuse), introduced in 1948, is a useful medication for alcohol addiction. Drinking while taking disulfiram will trigger severe nausea, vomiting, hot flashes, blurred vision, headache, breathing difficulty, and other unpleasant symptoms. Newer drugs for alcohol addiction include Acamprosate, which reduces cravings; and naltrexone, which blocks the effects of alcohol while reducing cravings. 

Considerable research over the years has shown that medications can be highly beneficial for the treatment of alcohol dependence. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) notes that currently, medications are underused in the treatment of alcoholism.

Many people can engage in treatment longer with the help of medications, thus increasing the chance of long-term success. 

New York Drug Rehabs Aren’t Your Only Option 

If you’re exploring alternatives to entering a rehab center in New York, contact us if 1st Step Behavioral Health today.. We’re located in beautiful and tranquil Pompano Beach, and we welcome clients from across the United States. Take a virtual tour, or give us a call today at 855-425-4846 for additional information.

Pompano Beach residential area

Why People Searching for Rehabs in Georgia Choose Florida Instead

A decision to enter treatment for substance abuse or addiction signals a major turning point in your life, and you understandably want to get started as soon as possible. Timing is critical, but don’t rush to enroll in the first drug rehab in Georgia that catches your attention. Treatment is a major commitment of time and money, so you must do everything possible to ensure the experience is positive and effective. 

If you’re looking at residential drug rehab centers in Georgia, don’t discount the possibility of traveling to a neighboring state like Florida. A treatment center in your area may be more convenient, and may also offer high-quality treatment, but that’s no guarantee that a local Georgia addiction center will be best for your particular recovery needs.

Treatment in Florida: A Fresh Start and a New Point of View

Substance abuse treatment isn’t easy, especially in the beginning, and unless you’re legally mandated to spend a specific length of time in treatment, you can walk away any time you choose. If you decide to enroll at a drug rehab in Georgia, the temptation to fall back into old habits may be too difficult to resist.

On the other hand, you’re more likely to stay engaged in treatment if you break connections and put a safe distance between you and the people and places that threaten your recovery — at least until you’re feeling more confident and secure in recovery. The urge to bend towards social pressures and unhealthy connections can be powerful, but once you’ve invested some time into addiction treatment, and the drugs and/or alcohol have left your system, you’ll be more clear headed. 

Traveling to a treatment center in Florida provides a fresh start in a completely new environment, while still maintaining a relatively close proximity to the comforts of familiarity. Comprehensive drug rehab centers like 1st Step will ensure you have an aftercare or relapse prevention plan in place before you go home. Chances are, you’ll be happy that you were able to achieve some space.

Space Can Help Preserve Personal Ties

Even the most loving and supportive relationships can bend and break under the pressure of addiction. If you’ve struggled with long-term addiction, you and your family are probably exhausted by chaos, anger, and disappointment. Your relationships may be hanging by a slender thread. 

Mending broken relationships takes time and commitment, and there are no guarantees that everything will magically be better once you complete treatment. However, getting away gives everybody time to heal and sort things out.

It isn’t necessary to sever connections with your family. You’ll be able to stay in contact via phone or email, if this is what you choose, and some form of family therapy can become part of your addiction treatment program. Family therapy may be in the form of casual family weekends or organized therapy sessions that will help you and your family establish healthy boundaries, rebuild trust, and break destructive patterns. 

The Importance of Privacy and Confidentiality

Dealing with the stress of a rumor mill or office gossip isn’t something you’ll want to deal with during your stay in treatment. If you enter into treatment at one of the many residential drug rehab centers in Georgia, there’s always a chance that you’ll bump into somebody you know. This is a common occurrence even in large, urban areas, and it isn’t easy to maintain a high level of privacy if you’re too close to home.  

Many Florida drug treatment centers offer programs specifically geared to working professionals. Keep in mind that you don’t need to tell your friends and coworkers you’re traveling for substance abuse treatment. They don’t need to know where you’re going or how long you’ll be gone unless you choose to tell them. 

Florida Offers A Wide Variety of Treatment Center Options

South Florida is famous for its beautiful weather and scenic beaches, but it’s also home to more than 600 of the nation’s top-rated addiction treatment providers. With a little research, you’re bound to find a rehab that fulfills your needs. For instance, instead of choosing an inpatient drug rehab center in Georgia, you may thrive in a rehab that offers the following options:

Dual diagnosis treatment

Specialized dual diagnosis treatment is essential if you need help with depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, PTSD, or other mental health issues along with substance abuse. In the past, it was customary to treat mental illness and addiction separately, which often required more than one treatment provider. Research over the last few decades has proven that co-occurring disorders should be treated at the same time.  

Medical detox

You may need medical attention if your substance abuse is severe, or if you’ve been addicted for a long time. With medical detox, a medical team will monitor you around the clock, and you may receive medications that will help you get through the hardest stages of withdrawal.

Medication-assisted treatment

Also known as MAT, medication-assisted treatment combines standard addiction treatment with medications that work by blocking the effects of drugs or alcohol, or by curbing severe cravings or other withdrawal symptoms.

Varied length of stay options

Standard treatment of about a month may not be long enough to address your substance abuse or addiction. Since Florida has such a wide variety of treatment centers you’re bound to find one that offers a program for the length of time you need, and if necessary, will adjust.

Complementary (alternative) treatments

Florida treatment centers offer many alternative therapies that many people find helpful. For example, you may benefit from yoga, mindfulness meditation, biofeedback, art therapy, equine therapy, or exercise and nutrition education.

Treatment for specific addictions

Many Florida treatment centers treat a variety of addictions, and this works well for most people. However, some centers focus on a specific addictions, such as opioids, crystal meth, cocaine, benzos, or alcohol.

Got Questions? Call 1st Step Today

Located in Pompano Beach, Florida, 1st Step Behavioral Health is dedicated to providing quality care, and our staff is always available to answer your questions and concerns. Our substance abuse programs are based on tried and true, research-based treatment methods that give you the best chance of long-term recovery. If you’re looking for help for you or a loved one, feel free to give us a call at 855-425-4846 or contact us online for more information

Black Balloons In Memory of Loved Ones

In this blog, the subjects of research and legislation and other factors that affect the future of south Florida rehab centers is often the focus, with a little dash of interesting stories about a survivor here or there throw in and a sprinkle of public education. However, people with substance use disorders aren’t always able to benefit from blogs like this or even residential detox or anything comparable to south Florida quality drug rehab programs. Many of them find themselves leaving behind families and loved ones, having fallen before the chronic illness of substance use disorder instead of ending up in the local news website with a story of inspiration intended for others to find strength in who are going through the same thing. The people in this unfortunate situation of passing on and losing the battle against addiction totalled more than 70,000 last year, more people than died from car accidents during the same period.

In Midland, Michigan, the survivors have taken up the task of reminding everyone that these aren’t statistics or just numbers, but people that had families, children, brothers and sisters that miss them. Unified by their loss of a loved one to addiction, people like Alyssa Wood are carrying black balloons with a message of love and the name of the person they lost written on it for a day.

“I’ve really used her passing as kind of a motive to go out and teach about stigma reduction and to do prevention work,” Wood said in an interview with their local NBC affiliate. Her work is cut out for her. Even within hospitals with trained physicians, identifying much less not holding social biases against someone who they suspect might be affected by addiction is still rather common and the public is largely lagging behind what they know.  

Psychologists and statisticians who have studied the phenomenon of ‘stigma’ agree that when putting a cultural bias towards something, it doesn’t matter if that thing is right or wrong, good or bad, it will influence people toward that bias or belief. This includes the belief that addiction itself is of a moral failing and that the only proper way to handle it is through passing judgement on the choices made by that person. This usually has the opposite effect culturally, and those suffering from addiction will often hide their condition for fear of judgement or in the case of illegal drugs, criminal penalty.

In fact, one of the goals of this blog is the same as these black balloons, but sometimes, it helps to put the idea into physical reality, that people were lost and they were important to their families, not junkies that were already ‘thrown away by society’, but everyday people, neighbors, friends…and family.  If the research, expert opinions, results of studies and practical aspects of it don’t make people see addiction as far more complicated than simply ‘bad choices’ or ‘moral failings’, maybe these black balloons will.

Addiction is a chronic illness that gets more severe the longer it is left untreated. If you or someone you love is suffering from substance use disorder, call First Step Behavioral Health at (866) 319-6126.

More Support For Holistic Treatment

Specialists in addiction treatment, from alcohol rehabs in Pompano to leading academic researchers, know that holistic treatment is the best approach to help a person cope with substance use disorder. The best substance abuse treatment Florida offers know that oftentimes addiction comes hand in hand with untreated mental health issues and can also be influenced by environment and even genetics. Recently, researchers discovered there’s about a twenty five percent overlap of people with chronic addictions and people with undiagnosed attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Finding more links like these strengthens the case to make addiction treatment required to address mental health for a full holistic and, more importantly, effective treatment for patients who put their faith in their south Florida rehab centers.

In Ohio, Lorain County is attempting to make inroads not only in the public understanding the inherent complexities of addiction, but also ensure that the more effective approach to treatment and therapy is the one that is most deployed. Every other county in the state has merged their boards for mental health and alcohol and drug addiction services due to the evidence that they are often related and now Lorain County is to complete their merger soon.

“Let’s change the daily conversation of one group only talking about mental health while another group only talks about addiction. Let’s make the daily mission about working together by sharing knowledge and resources to better serve our community,” said Commissioner Matt Lundy.

The public and, indeed, even medical professionals, especially physicians, still hold very outdated views about addiction, which often include moral judgement and championing the idea of ‘choice’ as both the indictment of and solution to addiction. Judgement itself often leads to people suffering from substance use disorders to not seek treatment. Even mental health itself, separate away from addiction, is also stigmatized to a degree, as well. Whether the macho manliness of not wanting to share emotions or cry in front of others, or the idea that other people will think a person is crazy for being diagnosed with rather common mental illness issues that don’t really make that person psychotic or crazy, mental health is also looked at some crooked scheme for people to take advantage of one another or worse.

With Ohio’s symbolic merger of these two fields into a singular field, it means that the conversation is indeed going forward and people are discovering that there’s more to substance abuse than things like choice or even the substance itself in many cases, that mental health issues like depression, anxiety, trauma, and other conditions like ADHD and post traumatic stress disorder can fuel addiction as well as provide a risk for trying controlled substances.  

The opioid crisis has proven that addiction can happen to anyone for any reason and that it’s a serious issue that requires professional treatment and holistic approach because it’s not something that can simply be given a magic cure-all pill.  Maybe one day, but for now, this is the best approach and hopefully more states and counties countrywide will follow the suit of Ohio if they have not already.

Addiction is a serious chronic illness that requires professional treatment from counselors that specialize in substance use disorder. Call First Step Behavioral Health at (866) 319-6126 if you or someone you know might be struggling with addiction.

Funding the Future of Addiction Research

Substance use disorder is a relatively new field of research compared to many other kinds of medicine and even in psychology, which is itself a young field of study. Neurobiology and genetics are also new field of research but with each study, we discover more about our world, our place in it and our own nature and the nature of things that lead people to need south Florida rehab centers for their condition. Even though the entire nature of addiction is not fully understood, south Florida drug rehab facilities still use the most up-to-date information possible and frequently look to new studies to constantly improve their approach in treatment.

One such area of study is the relationship of genetics to risk of addiction. Maine’s Jackson Laboratory is receiving $255,000 from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to further explore the nature of a person’s genetic makeup and how it can affect a person’s ability to develop substance use disorders, how their own genetics can change as a result of the condition as well as how genetics may increase difficulties in treatment.

The vice president of Jackson Laboratory comment, “[The grant] is an important step in propelling our work forward to help people around the world impacted by addiction.”

Currently, it’s understood that genetics play approximately role of about fifty percent in a person’s risk factors to develop and recover from substance use disorders. This means that if two people are in identical environmental and societal situations, but one has genes that have been identified to put them at risk for addiction to a substance, then that risk, at worse, for that person is fifty percent higher than the person without any genetic components factoring in.

Substance use disorders themselves trigger genetic traits that can remain dormant in a person’s neurobiology or can ‘rewire’ a normal function that genetics are typically in charge of. There’s not any current medications that can directly affect these traits at the moment, but as they say in treatment, “Identifying a problem is the first step to treating it”. Currently, science is still doing much of the identification process which will contribute to future treatment options that are likely to be far more effective. Even considering the spotty scientific understanding of addiction the medical and psychology fields have about addiction, the results of implementing this knowledge into treatment for things like oxycodone withdrawal symptoms is far more effective than the traditional faith-based/twelve-step programs that many people believe are the most effective, despite evidence showing the contrary.

Holistic treatments that bring together research and evidence from multiple fields that include medical communities, scientific communities, psychiatry communities and psychology communities have proven to have a far higher success rate in treating substance use disorders and this new research project will only strengthen this approach in the future.

For individuals and families fighting with addiction to prescription, illicit, or purchasable substances, be it alcohol, opioids, heroin, or anything else, contact First Step Behavioral Health as soon as possible. The earlier treatment is received, the higher the likelihood that the addiction will end once and for all. Give us a call today at (866) 319-6126 to learn more about addiction treatment in Pompano.

Identifying Genetic Addiction Risks

The scientific community is already at a consensus that at least half of a reason that someone develops an addiction requiring substance abuse treatment in Florida is due to genetic makeup. That is not to say that if you have the genes in question leaning toward inflating risk factors means that you will, one day, require the services of south Florida rehab centers, but that coming into contact with addictive substances increases your risk of developing addiction after contact compared to someone who genetically is not predisposed to addiction. Many people think that genetics are used as an excuse for moral failings, but recent science has been uncovering more and more about the mechanics of addiction through neurobiological research and genetic inspection as well as experiments with rats and, for instance, cocaine, a known highly addictive substance.

Recently, the University of Cambridge’s Department of Psychiatry published a study further identifying some of the genetic factors that play a role in addiction, specifically with younger people. As it’s already known, the adult brain isn’t truly fully developed until a person reaches their early twenties. Coming into contact with addictive substances can have a different genetic outcome based on age as well, the study concludes.

According to the study, there is “a strong association between increased behavioral impulsivity in young adults and abnormalities in nerve cells in the putamen, a key brain region involved in addictive disorders.”

Dr. Camilla Nord of MRC Cognition and Brain Sciences unit and lead author of the study, which involve ninety-nine participates aged 16-26, adds “People who show heightened impulsivity are more likely to experience a number of mental health issues, including substance and behavioral addictions, eating disorders and [attention deficit hyperactivity disorder].”

The overall takeaway from their research, which monitored brain activity through a series of tests using brain imaging technology, was that impulsivity is an ‘endophenotype’; a set of behavioral and brain changes that increases people’s general risk for developing a group of psychiatric and neurological disorders, one of them being substance use disorder or addiction. By identifying these functions, which control dopamine release and other behavioral neurobiological chemicals that control behavior in the brain, it may one day be possible to either reverse or the effects of the hijacking of these systems by substance use or at the very least provide something akin to a ‘vaccine’ that reduces the risk of developing addictions (or any of the other related behavioral disorders) prior to coming into contact with the risks themselves.

As the addiction crisis in America continues on, it will be dependant on the findings of research like this to make a massive dent in the numbers of people affected by substance use disorder. It’s estimated that around two million Americans nationwide suffer from some form of substance use disorder with only a fraction even diagnosed and an even smaller number of people actually in treatment. About fifty percent of the population continues to believe addiction is a moral failing or lack of personal judgement or other cultural superstition.

If you or someone you know is suffering from substance use disorder, a call to First Step Behavioral Health can help manage the illness. Call (866) 319-6126 for treatment options such as residential detox.

Understanding Your Prescription Options Can Prevent Addiction

There is a saying that ‘Knowledge is Power’.  In the world of consumer advocacy, this is probably one of the most true statements one can make. Considering that the United States largely operates on a consumer/market model for things like dentistry, being an informed consumer could be the difference between a successful visit with no problems or having to check into a south Florida rehab center for oxycodone withdrawal symptoms. The opioid crisis is often framed as ‘the opioid’ crisis with one or two names of drugs frequenting the news, often being oxycodone and heroin, but the truth is, opioids have many forms and names and even dentists have been living by the ‘ignorance is bliss’ saying rather than taking the initiative to understanding the drugs they prescribe for operations such as wisdom tooth removal.

As a consumer in a ‘free market’ such as this, it’s important to understand what exactly the risks are of drugs prescribed to you by a physician or dentist. While they may be experts on knowing what drugs will operate as a painkiller, they may not be aware of the addictive properties of said painkillers when prescribing them.  A recent article in the Washington Post by Ronnie Cohen described their own personal lack of attention paid to a relatively harmless situation.

“A few days before extracting my teenager’s wisdom teeth, an oral surgeon wrote him a prescription for painkillers. My son filled it but never felt a need for anything stronger than ibuprofen. Three years later, I found an unopened bottle of Percocet—an opioid– in the back of a bathroom cabinet. I had no idea a dentist had prescribed..the highly addictive pills.”

According to the Journal of the American Dental Association, dentists prescribe twelve percent of all painkilling opioids and family doctors prescribe fifteen percent. An American Dental Association survey of 563 oral surgeons in 2004 revealed that eight-five percent of oral surgeons wrote opioid prescriptions to their patients after removing wisdom teeth.

While some operations and injuries do require heavy doses of painkillers, it’s often overkill for many kinds of visits. Anti-inflammatory analgesics like ibuprofen often end up being a more beneficial choice, not only for its lack of addictive properties, but also for effectiveness in minimizing associated pain. When coupled with the fact that many people who find themselves inside the halls of a south Florida detox program often find they have undiagnosed secondary mental health issues like depression or anxiety, it becomes even more important to really pay attention to what a doctor or dentist prescribes as it may be the difference between a simple procedure or a complicated lifelong chronic illness known as addiction.

As more studies come about showing the harmful effects of such drugs, physicians will eventually become aware of the carelessness on their part with their patients lives. Until then, however, you as the consumer have to exercise your role as being informed as possible when going into these situations. Otherwise, you’re playing roulette and the losses can be up to and including your life.

If you are or someone you know might be suffering from substance use disorder, call First Step Behavioral Health at (866) 319-6126 for treatment options.

Colorado Attempts To Fast Track Addiction Treatment From the ER

For many people who are looking for south Florida rehab centers, whether for themselves or someone else, one of the places that would seem like a major help often isn’t: the hospital. Finding drug rehab in Ft. Lauderdale, for instance, often times won’t be a referral from a doctor but more likely from an internet search or even something like a billboard on the side of the freeway. Considering the serious health issues that come with addiction, it’s somewhat bizarre that this is the case for most hospitals, that they are neither equipped to really identify addiction in its early stages nor know where to send people for treatment if they even diagnose it.

Colorado has noticed this deficiency in their healthcare organizations and have decided to look for solution, as have many states. Their particular approach is to start getting many of their physicians certified to administer buprenorphine and other medical assisted treatment drugs in their hospitals for addictions that have MAT’s (certain substances do not have any medications of this sort available, the most notable and dangerous being methamphetamine). The efforts are being made in an attempt to at least try and ‘kickstart’ a path into a professional treatment facility by being the first contact with addiction help, primarily in the ER where hospital staff frequently will come into contact with people suffering from an overdose.

There has already been a federal push to fund drugs like naloxone, which is one of many opioid-based nullifying drugs which can prevent overdose as well as partially or completely eliminate both withdrawal symptoms and cravings for further opioid use.

With this new Colorado proposal, a biophysical assessment performed by a licensed therapist at the point of contact inside the hospital will give potential candidates the opportunity to begin their early treatment through the hospital itself through MAT’s such as prescription buprenorphine. The program hopes to encourage not only medical staff to better understand addiction, since even today many physicians still internalize a belief that addiction is a purely self-inflicted morality failure, but also to prevent overdoses and fast track people suffering from substance use disorders into a treatment that can truly help them.

As the country, as well as Florida and it’s plethora of south Florida drug rehab facilities and treatment centers, continues to handle this issue independently, the conversation’s movement and the public opinion needle are slowly inching toward what many believe will be far more effective in this issue which is the marriage of mental health and physical health both in terms of coverage of insurance as well as offerings from medical establishments, especially where conditions like addiction concern both simultaneously. Often times, it’s not enough to simply beat the physical dependency of a substance, but to undergo behavioral therapy and psychological treatments that give a person in recovery the tools to resist cravings and relapse triggers.

If you or someone you know is looking for substance use disorder treatment, call First Step Behavioral Health at (866) 319-6126 for treatment options.