After quitting drinking I swore I'd never again suffer through the pain and shame of addiction, and I meant it too. Then I got injured on the job, and was prescribed vicodin, and what began as pain relief quickly became drug abuse as I took ever increasing quantities to get that high I loved.
My intervention saved my life. It's normal to feel worried about confronting a loved one with the painful truths of addiction. An intervention won't be easy, may create some tears, and life will never be the same after you speak your mind; but if you really care about that person, it's the best thing you can do to get them the help they need.
When I left treatment they told me to get a "sponsor". After my first AA meeting some guys raised their hands. These were guys who claimed to be willing and able to sponsor newcomers, had multiple years of sobriety, and worked all of the 12 steps. I spoke with a few people and got a few business cards. A week later a guy came up to me at the same meeting. He asked me if I had found a sponsor yet, my response was no of course. He told me he wanted to buy me a cup of coffee across the street and explain to me why sponsorship was so important. He actually made a lot of sense.
Five years ago I sat on the beach with my sponsor. This guy was 290 lbs and claimed to be an ex-hitman. For whatever reason, we worked well together and having just gotten out of drug treatment I was not picky with who I worked with.
The easy way out is to latch on to someone and remove yourself from your own issues. The short-term solution for dealing with you in early recovery from addiction is to get into a relationship.
I got sober and I became a fulltime gambling addict. Once I had that licked I moved on to sex. Once I had that figured out I moved onto workaholism. When that stopped working I ended up back at square one, in an AA meeting with 10 guys telling me that I am just trying to fill the void and I don’t have the guts to do it the right way.
Topiramate, a drug already approved for the treatment of epilepsy, has proven effective at reducing alcohol cravings in recovering alcoholics.
The advantages of a long term rehab. Why sometimes 3 months or more just offers more.
If a month at rehab can teach you what you need to know to get off, and stay off, drugs and alcohol...isn't it worth it? Learning to live without abuse isn't going to be easy, and there are no shortcuts to success; you need to take the time and make the effort to get better, and stay better. I've been to rehab twice, and even though I needed to go back a second time, I've never considered either rehab a failure, and I'm just grateful I can enjoy my life, and my family, without the pain and suffering of addiction.
I hear people discussing this topic in almost every meeting I go to. People are always talking about making amends, apologizing, repairing old relationships and doing the best they can to deal with it. If there is one step I could remove from the 12 - it would be this one! The
I have dealt with alcoholism and drug addiction. 90% of the time it was related. Here is a brief comparison between AA and NA and what works for me and why.
When choosing a drug rehab facility I tried looking for a few very important features.
You know I know of dozens of large treatment centers in California alone. There are plenty of them lined all over the coast. There must be something in the water, or it is a trend.
With all the choice available, it's easy to get overwhelmed when trying to select a quality rehab facility. You desperately want to make the right choice, and because achieving sobriety is so important, the pressure to choose correctly can become very stressful. The perfect facility for one might be a disaster for another, and as such you need to choose the facility that's the best match for the addict and their personality. As follows are 8 criteria I've used when evaluating rehab facilities and these criteria may offer you a starting point when thinking about how to pick a rehabilitation facility. Remember that any rehab is better than no rehab, and by taking a bit of time, and selecting with care and the needs of the addict in mind, you'll almost certainly make a great choice.
Using methadone to break free from heroin abuse is relatively painless, and will allow you to function normally in society. But methadone is in itself a very addictive substance, and a lot addicts who try to get off methadone remain users many years into treatment.
The seduction of pain medication. A slippery slope to addiction.
Meth addicts need up to two full weeks of detox before they are able to fully participate in rehab, and get any benefit from the programs and counseling offered.
Faced with the increasing devastation of crystal meth addiction, University of Iowa researchers examined what features were most successful in the treatment of meth addiction, and concluded that the standard drug rehab programming was appropriate and beneficial for meth addicts, but that longer term stays were necessary due to the destructive capacities of the drug.
The university researchers recommended long rehabs and also recommended that government shift funding away from incarceration for meth offences and towards funding treatment for addicts of the drug.
While Californian doctors could previously receive drug and alcohol treatment without their patient's knowledge, and while retaining their medical licenses, this program of professional rehabilitation has been suspended, and abusing doctors will now be required to forfeit their license to practice until they can demonstrate that they are no longer a threat to their patients. While this may seem a very logical policy, by increasing the barriers to rehab and the costs of treatment, the number of abusing doctors that do get help will decrease, and in fact more patients will be at risk from intoxicated doctors.
Today's heroin addict can be anyone, and heroin is no longer found only in the inner city. Today's heroin is cheap and it is pure, and it's so good that no longer more injection is required. Today's heroin is pure enough to be snorted and this is appealing to a lot of people that would never dream of sticking a needle in their arm. But make no mistake, heroin is heroin, and whether it is injected, snorted or smoked, the end result is far too often addiction, suffering and sometimes early death. If you use heroin recreationally, you need to stop now. If are addicted, you need treatment now; and if you've never tried heroin, don't get fooled by "heroin chic" or any such glamorization of the drug, and never start in the first place. Heroin pulls you in, and once you're addicted it's very tough to break free.
OK so all heroin is pretty scary stuff, but the heroin that's been hitting the streets…and the school yards lately, is more likely than not coming up from the south, and is cheaper and stronger than ever before. This cheap and potent heroin can be snorted effectively and this is making heroin seemingly less frightening to a lot of people that would never dream of injecting.
There's also the heroin chic factor, and the coolness of heroin has been glamorized in film and music, and certainly adds to the temptation to at least give this drug a try, if only once. Unfortunately, only once often turns into once in a while, and from there to just about every minute is a pretty easy transition when you consider just how seductive, pleasurable and addictive the drug is.
In general, the faster the effects are felt after administration, the more addictive the drug is considered, and as such the relatively slow effects onset of snorting when compared to injection should make it a safer way to use; but new research indicates that this doesn't seem to be the case, and snorting heroin appears to be every bit as addictive as injecting. The profile of the average heroin user has changed considerably in the last five years, and heroin, once the king of the urban inner city, has crept into the suburbs and the night clubs, and today's heroin addict can be just about anyone.
Snorting heroin does cause nosebleeds, and can cause permanent nasal damage, but the risks of overdose and the contraction of Hepatitis C or HIV are lower than with injection drug use. Unfortunately, a significant percentage of heroin abusers, who start out snorting heroin, will eventually progress to the more efficient means of injection administration, and are then faced with all of the health risks associated with IV usage anyways.
The risks of heroin are incredible, and in addition to Hepatitis C, HIV, abscessed veins, decreased immuno functioning and a host of other serious health disorders, heroin is far and away the drug most likely to cause an accidental overdose. The variable purity of the drug as it is sold at the street level makes dosing pretty tricky, and it only takes one mistake to kill you.
Heroin is heroin, and it doesn’t matter if you snort it, smoke it or inject it, it's one of the most dangerous and destructive drugs known, and any heroin use needs to be taken very seriously. If you or someone you love is taking heroin recreationally, it needs to stop now, while it still can. It's so easy to become physically dependent on the drug, and once hooked, it's not easy to get off. If you or a loved one has become dependent, it's time to consider getting clean.
The first step is detox, and heroin detox is no joke (I've done an opiate detox, and I can tell you how rough it can be!). There aren't many people with enough determination to detox on their own, and if heroin is available, most will get it and use, if only to take the pain of detox away. The only way most people can ever detox off of heroin is to get professional help, and get out of the environment of use and access to the supply of heroin. Professional detox can also ease the symptoms of detox, and is make the days of withdrawal as comfortable as is possible.
But detox is only the beginning, and the pull of heroin is strong. Most addicts will need the period of sobriety, of learning, and of counseling as offered in a drug rehab facility; and even then long term abstinence is no guarantee.
But recovery is possible, and it's the only acceptable goal. If you or someone you love has a heroin problem, get professional help and take as long as is needed to learn how to live without heroin abuse.
The easiest way to avoid heroin addiction is to never start using, and as such people need to get educated about the dangers of snorting heroin. Heroin, whether it's snorted smoked or injected is very dangerous and very destructive, and trying it once is often the first step to a life of addiction. There is no such thing as heroin chic…there is only heroin pain and heroin suffering.
AA works for me, and it works for most of the addicts I know...but because it helps me doesn't mean that it will help you, and you need to find an aftercare program that supports you and allows for your continuing sobriety. AA is not a cult, and is only offered for the benefit of recovering alcoholics, you are free to come and go at your discretion, and you are not required to pay for any of the services offered. It does require a belief in a higher power, but many members find a way to make the AA philosophy fit within their existing beliefs, and many agnostics and even atheists can still find success within the interfaith organization…others cannot.
Today's marijuana is many times stronger than the marijuana of even a decade ago; and with increasing potency comes increasing addiction and increasing social problems.
I believe in God, but I'm not much of a church goer, and so when I needed to go to rehab, my family arranged for a secular facility. I can't complain about my rehab experience; it worked and does work for me still, but a Christian Rehab offers some compelling features, and If I ever need to go again, I'll consider a Christian rehab.
Going from drunk to sober freed up about 70 hours a week for me. How was I gonna fill up those hours without drinking!?!
If you can ever convince a person who needs help to get it, then you've done a very good thing…no matter what they may think at the time; and more often than not, they'll thank you for it later. I was convinced to enter rehab through an intervention, and I would suggest that anyone thinking about how to get a loved one the help that they need consider this method of encouragement. They are never easy, but they are remarkably effective.