Chicago, Illinois Drug Addiction Treatment Center

Chicago, also known as the windy city, is infamous for its drug use. The most commonly abused drugs in Chicago include cocaine, marijuana, heroin, and ecstasy (MDMA). Prescription drugs such as methadone, Adderall, oxycodone, and Hydrocodone are also commonly abused.

Unfortunately, drug abuse and addiction affect the individual, their families, and close ones as well as the community at large. For this reason, it’s important to seek the right treatment to help addicts get back on track.

If you’re looking for a drug rehab in Chicago, Illinois, here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • The location – One of the first things to do is to decide whether you’ll stay local or travel for rehab. There may be many drug addiction treatment centers in Chicago but these may not suit your needs or they may not know how to treat your addiction. In that case, you have the option of traveling for rehab.
  • The level of care offered – When looking for a Chicago, Illinois drug rehab, you have to consider the care offered at the facility. A reputable drug rehab should have different treatment programs e.g. outpatient treatment, partial hospitalization or intensive outpatient treatment. These treatment programs should be individualized to suit your unique treatment goals.
  • Trained and licensed staff –When looking for a drug addiction treatment center, you want to be sure that you’re in safe hands. It’s important that you choose a rehab facility with staff who are trained, licensed, and experienced in offering addiction treatment and care.
  • The cost of treatment – You also need to think about how much the treatment will cost. Addiction treatment in most cases isn’t cheap especially if you’re paying out of pocket. Be sure to ask if the treatment center accepts your insurance or if they have a payment plan that suits your budget.
  • The environment – Recovering from drug addiction is challenging and you need to be in a safe, serene environment. The rehab should also offer a variety of amenities and curricular activities to keep you occupied and encourage interaction among clients. Compare different facilities and what they offer before choosing one to attend.
  • Aftercare treatment – Recovery doesn’t end when you leave a treatment program. It’s a lifetime process and you’ll still need support to get back on your feet. The right treatment center will offer clients aftercare treatment either by linking them with support groups, sober living homes, or by continuing to offer therapy after treatment.

Reach Out Today

No one should battle drug addiction on their own. If you’re a resident of Chicago, Illinois looking for drug rehab, there’s always the option of traveling to Indiana. We at Evolve Indy in Indiana welcome both local and out-of-state clients. We offer a range of treatment programs to suit our clients’ needs and ensure we follow up with them after treatment.

Get in touch with us today to learn more about our drug addiction treatment programs.

Champaign, Illinois Drug Addiction Treatment Center

Drug abuse is a huge issue in the country and cities such as Champaign, Illinois haven’t been spared. Champaign is undoubtedly the heart of Illinois and being a college town, hosts a healthy community of young adults. Unfortunately, this also means that there are plenty of young adults experimenting with drugs and alcohol. This is supported by statistics which show that alcohol and substance abuse numbers in Champaign co-relate with the national statistics on the same.

If you are a resident of Champaign, Illinois and are looking for a drug rehab center either for yourself or a loved one, you need to do your due diligence. While there are plenty of rehabs out there, they aren’t all equal. Sad to say, some of them are only after your money and won’t offer much in terms of rehab assistance and recovery.

What To Look For In A Drug Addiction Treatment Center

While looking for a drug addiction treatment center, there are some things you should keep in mind. Firstly, you don’t have to limit your search to drug rehabs in Illinois. You can choose to travel for rehab and come to Evolve Indy in Indiana.

As one of the trusted drug abuse treatment centers in Indiana, we at Evolve Indy have helped hundreds of people struggling with addiction and can do the same for you. Here are some reasons why you should choose our drug rehab center in Indiana:

  • Evidence-based treatment. At Evolve Indy, we pride ourselves on offering individualized addiction treatment. We recognize that everyone is different and so we tailor our clients’ recovery goals to their individual needs. We provide a range of treatment programs including partial hospitalization, intensive outpatient treatment, and even family therapy to ensure we meet all our clients’ treatment goals.
  • Capability and capacity. Evolve Indy is accredited by the Joint Commission and all our staff have the requisite experience and certification. We also maintain a low client-to-staff ratio to ensure everyone receives the help, attention and assistance they need.
  • Suitable location. Our drug rehab center in Indiana is located within a serene environment, making it conducive to recovery. Choosing to travel for rehab here has an advantage in that you leave the negative environment that contributed to your drug addiction behind and commit to building a new life.
  • Affordable treatment options. We are committed to ensuring that all those who need addiction treatment services receive help. To this end, we work with most major insurance carriers and also provide a variety of payment options for our clients.
  • Testimonials and references. We encourage those looking to join our rehab to see what our former clients have to say about us. We are also willing to provide references and walkthroughs for potential clients because we know the value of our services.

Looking for a drug rehab in Champaign, Illinois doesn’t have to be a struggle. Reach out to us today and get started on your recovery.

What Are The Signs Of Someone Addicted To Fentanyl

Are you concerned someone close to you has a Fentanyl addiction and requires treatment, or are you unsure of what to look for when it comes to becoming addicted to Fentanyl?

Before looking at the signs of a Fentanyl addiction, it can be beneficial first to learn more about the drug and how it is used before addressing addiction to Fentanyl.

What is Fentanyl?

Fentanyl is a highly addictive synthetic opioid. It is prescribed to treat severe and chronic pain when other drugs aren’t relieving pain in patients. Fentanyl is also 50-100 times stronger than morphine, meaning it has a high potential to be abused.

Fentanyl can come in a patch, lozenge, tablet, and spray form. All formats are highly addictive and just as strong as each other regardless of how it is consumed.

What Are The Effects of Taking Fentanyl?

Physicians can prescribe Fentanyl for chronic pain or severe pain relating to an accident, injury, illness, or chronic condition for cancer pain.

Primarily used as pain relief, people taking Fentanyl can often experience side effects from the drug, including:

  • Constipation
  • Drowsiness
  • Confusion
  • Dizziness
  • Mood changes
  • Tingling in hands, lips, and feet
  • Fainting labored breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Loss of appetite
  • Mood changes 
  • Anxiety
  • Nausea
  • Addiction and more

While not all users will experience all of the side effects or become addicted, the longer you take Fentanyl, the greater the risk of addiction and increased tolerance requiring higher dosages to manage pain. With increased tolerance to Fentanyl and an increased dosage, the side effects increase, and the dangers of continued use become greater.

How To Tell Someone Is Addicted To Fentanyl

As an opioid, Fentanyl works by binding to the brain’s opioid receptors, which pound in the areas of the brain that control pain and emotions, causing extreme happiness; reduced pain levels can potentially have any side effects listed above.

The euphoria experienced with the reduction or elimination of pain increases the chances of becoming addicted, leaving users chasing that initial high and pain relief, as does the return of the pain once the effect wears off. Opioids aren’t long-lasting, and you need regular medication for increased pain relief benefits.

However, over time, users will require more significant amounts of Fentanyl to have the desired effect. This reliance on the drug and its impact is what can lead to addiction. It is a vicious circle that can trap individuals and makes them feel like they have no way out other than to keep taking Fentanyl no matter how much they want to stop.

Individuals relying on Fentanyl will be showing various mental, physical, and lifestyle changes due to the effect on their life and physical and psychological health.

Signs an individual is addicted to Fentanyl can include;

  • Increase in the amount of Fentanyl taken or the time it is taken for.
  • Taking it for longer than initially intended
  • The individual spends a lot of time thinking about or obtaining Fentanyl
  • Spending most of or all of their money on receiving Fentanyl
  • Urges or cravings for Fentanyl
  • Reduced capacity to carry out obligations such as work, school, caring for children, etc.
  • The individual continues to use Fentanyl despite being aware of the issues it is causing.
  • Withdrawal from regular activities and participation in personal and work commitments.
  • The use of Fentanyl continues despite the health complications it is causing.
  • They have developed a tolerance to the drug and require more to get the same initial feeling.

Other behavioral signs can include people stealing or selling items to make money to purchase Fentanyl illegally or other drugs to induce the same feeling, such as heroin, disappearing for long periods as they are sleeping excessively, or have lost their job due to their dependence on opioids.

Treating an Addiction to Fentanyl

Overcoming an addiction to Fentanyl can be challenging but not impossible. There are many traditional and unique treatment methods available at addiction centers to help those struggling with a reliance on Fentanyl overcome their dependence on the drug. 

An expert treatment program that can offer intensive outpatient treatment along with options for partial hospitalization and outpatient treatment can help overcome substance abuse using both traditional and modern ways and can prove particularly effective in discovering the root cause of addiction and offering a better chance of recovery success.

For those experiencing opioid addiction, intensive inpatient treatment can often be the best option for overcoming substance abuse, as hospitalization can offer more accessible access to support and medical intervention when recovering from an addiction to Fentanyl. Ongoing support can help you get sober and remain free from opioid abuse.

Drug Rehab, Addiction, And Childhood Trauma

Does trauma in childhood lead to addiction, and is there a correlation between addiction and childhood trauma? While not every child who experiences childhood trauma will become addicted to substances, studies have found a correlation between addiction and childhood trauma. 

A study of 587 patients from Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta, GA, indicated a strong correlation between childhood trauma and substance abuse and lifetime dependency.

What is Childhood Trauma?

Most people will automatically think of physical and sexual abuse when childhood traumas are being discussed. While these are significant traumas that will substantially affect childhood, other traumas can involve the death of a parent or caregiver, witnessing domestic violence, bullying, living in a household where people struggle with mental illnesses, extreme poverty, homelessness, and more.

While these situations would still be traumatic for adults, they will have a more profound effect on children. Adults think with their prefrontal cortex, which isn’t fully developed until the early to mid-20s, meaning that children will exhibit poor decision-making skills, and an inability to perceive danger as an adult would as reasoning, planning, judgment, and impulse control, are controlled by the prefrontal cortex.

Children often rely on loved ones or adults for support and guidance during difficult items; if they don’t have this support or their loved ones’ care causing the trauma, this opens up the need of self medicate to help them deal with the traumas they are experiencing.

Addiction and Childhood Trauma

The National Survey of Adolescents identified that children who experienced some form of childhood trauma were three times more likely to develop an addiction problem compared to those who did not.

Evidence also shows that childhood trauma makes children more susceptible to compromised neural structure and functions as well as cognitive deficits and mental illnesses. The onset of these conditions can also increase the risk of self-medicating, leading to drug addictions in adulthood as the now adults struggle to process their childhood and learn to live with the experiences they have endured.

On top of this, studies indicated an increased risk of PTSD, which in turn can lead to people towards the use of illicit drugs to self-medicate, thus further increasing the likelihood of addiction.

Dealing with Childhood Trauma in Adulthood

As the brain isn’t fully formed and developed until post-adolescence, the dangers of early drug-taking can lead to addiction and addictive behavioral patterns in adolescence and through to adulthood. 

Drug rehab for adolescents needs to work with the teen to assist them in changing the pathways created in the brain due to addiction to support their lifestyle changes, increase the ability to remain sober, and reduce the risk of relapsing.

As the prefrontal cortex develops, prior drug use will affect decision-making and reasoning skills as the brain will seek the drug to impact receptors in the brain that release dopamine and give users that euphoric feeling. 

From here, drug addiction will be a lifelong issue that will need to be managed and controlled, and drug rehab is essential in challenging and changing these behaviors. Providing adults and teens alike with the skills to deal with their addiction and maintain sobriety through intensive outpatient programs or inpatient treatments needs to look beyond the addiction and consider all lifestyle factors for improved success.

Dealing with childhood trauma is vital to allow those with substance use disorders to address why they started taking drugs in the first place and work to process what happened to them. On top of this, those with mental health problems and conditions also need adequate support to help support their mental health as they work through recovery. 

Another factor that is essential to deal with is that as adults, those who suffered childhood trauma may exhibit behaviors modeled by parents or those of influence in their lives. This, too, can be repeating the cycle of abuse or addictions; as this is the only behavior they have been exposed to, leaving them with no frame of reference to make different or better choices.

Ongoing outpatient treatment programs can work to support the better choices required to break the cycle through group or individual therapy and support pathways to overcome childhood traumas.

Rehab for Childhood Traumas

While childhood traumas will not predict addiction and/or PTSD, they increase the risk of addiction and PTSD in adolescence and adulthood. Drug rehab is vital to get support to those who need it to help them work through addiction and trauma in childhood and support a sober lifestyle for the future.

How Quickly Do Drugs Become Addictive

There are many misconceptions about how and why some people become addicted to drugs and others don’t. As a society, there is a prevalence to think that someone who has become addicted to drugs is inherently bad, weak, and lacking self-control; however, the actual reasons behind addiction can be more complex than simply making bad choices or being too weak to say no.

How Does Drug Addiction Start

People often start taking drugs to experiment or recreationally, which can trigger an addiction. However, before you look at why some people become addicted and some don’t, it is essential to understand how the brain works and how an addiction is formed. Drug treatment centers focus on this to address the underlying cause of the addiction to help improve the chances of sobriety.

Taking drugs affects the brain’s “reward center.” This means that dopamine floods the body when a person takes drugs, and the user feels euphoric. The brain naturally adapts to this high when you have a properly functioning reward center. Over time, your brain and your body will start to crave that initial hit leading to drug-seeking behavior and the desire to take drugs to give the brain the reward it is seeking.

So while the initial drug-taking was voluntary, repeated behavior can cause changes to the brain, leading to decreased self-control and the inability to resist the urge to take drugs.

The more a person takes drugs, the more the brain reduces the ability of the cells in the reward center to respond to the effects of the drug. This requires the user to need more and more drugs to replicate that initial feeling. This is called tolerance and causes users to continue to use drugs despite knowing the effects it has on other parts of their body and health.

What Other Factors Play a Part In Drug Addiction?

Despite all of this, the reality is that not everyone who tries drugs becomes addicted. While some can try them once and have no desire to try them again, others can take drugs sporadically without the need to consume large quantities daily or an addiction developing.

While you can not predict who will and won’t become addicted to drugs, certain lifestyle factors can increase the risk of addiction.

Gender, ethnicity, and mental disorders already present can increase the risk of becoming addicted to drugs. At the same time, your genes can also make up half the risk of whether or not you will likely become addicted to drugs.

Another factor is the age at which a person first tries drugs. The younger the user, the greater the risk of developing a substance use disorder that continues later in life. Addiction is a relapsing condition, meaning that there is always the chance of relapsing into addiction regardless of how long you have maintained sobriety. The changes in the brain during addiction can permanently affect your life and choices, and those with substance abuse disorders need to be aware of the potential to relapse at any time. 

When these changes are made in adolescents when the brain isn’t yet fully developed, it can increase the risk of addiction as areas of the brain still are not developed properly to allow teens to make the right decisions.

For this reason, drug treatment programs work to address other factors to give people the tools and skills required to keep this risk management to support recovery throughout their life.

Lastly, environmental factors also significantly influence whether or not a person is likely to develop an addiction and how fast that addiction can take hold. From peer pressure, economic status, stress, sexual and physical abuse, and general quality of life. That’s not to say people with a better quality of life or poorer quality of life will immediately make you more susceptible to an addiction problem; it can influence how you use and perceive drugs in your life.

How Quickly Do You Develop A Drug Addiction

There is no timeline for how long it takes to develop an addiction. Each addiction journey is unique, with so many different factors playing a part in the development of an addiction. 
For this reason, when looking for a drug rehab treatment, you need to look at the options available, and whether or not they can support you in the way you require. From accessing intensive outpatient programs to partial hospitalization, addressing all of the factors that played a part in your addiction will give you the best chances of success for ongoing sobriety.

Signs Of Drug Use & Addiction: How To Tell If Someone Is In Active Addiction

Since 2000, there have been over 700,000 deaths associated with substance abuse in America. A study by discovered that as of 2020, over half of the population aged 12 or over had tried illicit drugs at least once.

But with an increase in substance abuse and prescription drug and opioid abuse on the rise in America, identifying the signs of drug addiction can help you to help a person stuck in this lifestyle and allow them to get the support they need.

Drug Addiction in America

Some more interesting stats from the survey indicate that there has been a 3.8% year-on-year increase in Americans aged 12 and over having used drugs in the previous month. 25.4% of illegal drug users have a substance use disorder.

With increasing rates of people abusing drugs, from marijuana, the most common illicit drug taken in the US, to cocaine, methamphetamine, and opioids, ensuring access to treatment facilities to support recovery from addiction and regain sobriety is vital to get people the support they need. 

Whether it is checking a rehab facility using a combination of traditional and modern therapy techniques to tackle the root cause behind the addiction. Or using partial hospitalization options to recover from addiction and choosing a treatment program to assist in sobriety that looks beyond the addiction and deals with the reason behind the substance abuse can help users live a healthier, cleaner lifestyle with sustained longevity in their recovery.

Signs of Drug Addiction

The signs of drug addiction can appear differently in-person to person. They will be dictated by their lifestyle, the type of substance they are abusing, and their ability to access the drug and money to support their habit.

While physical signs in users can be similar, knowing the lifestyle changes and factors to look for can be a big help too.

Physical health signs include:

  • Bloodshot eyes
  • Changes in energy levels
  • Disrupted sleep patterns
  • Weight loss
  • Unusual bodily smells
  • Poor skin tone
  • Lethargy/low energy

Physiological signs of drug abuse include:

  • Changes in personality
  • Extreme mood swings
  • Anxiety
  • Paranoia
  • Altered behavior

Behavioral signs of drug abuse:

  • Missing school/work/important appointments etc
  • Poor performance at work or school
  • Changes in how they dress and attention to their appearance
  • Spending more money than usual or borrowing money to spend on drugs
  • Distracted behavior due to being focused on taking/sourcing/finding drugs
  • Inability to carry out typical day-to-day activities such as food shopping, cleaning the home, paying bills on time
  • Shutting themselves away and an increased desire for privacy
  • Changes in social habits, changing friendship groups
  • Legal trouble, getting arrested, committing crimes, etc 

If you are concerned about drug abuse in adolescents, signs to look out for can include a sudden drop in grades or a change in habits, such as not studying as much or going more often than they previously did. 

Spending time with new friends and neglecting previous friendship circles, getting into more trouble at school, missing school, increased irritability, and changes in sleeping habits.

Getting Help for Substance Abuse

Knowing how to tackle substance abuse and getting the right help for addiction can be a complex topic to bring up, so it is essential to know your options so you can offer a complete line of support to help someone with a substance use disorder and reliance on drugs to get the treatment they need.

Likely, someone in the grip of a drug addiction won’t be able to see they have a problem or be receptive to getting help and treatment, so preparing yourself for an adverse reaction will be required. Many questions will be asked about entering rehab, which can range from what will happen to their school or college admission while at rehab, who will look after any children involved, who will pay the bills, who will lose their job, and so on. 

You might not be able to answer all of the questions, but being ready to tackle the practicalities of someone entering rehab can put you in a better position to offer help regardless of if you or they bring up the subject of treatment for drug addiction.

Finding treatment centers that offer the correct type of program for recovery can be challenging as each center will provide a different approach. Look at the lifestyle factors to determine whether or not an intensive outpatient program can be beneficial or if opting for an inpatient program would work better. 

In many cases, rehab services can be included in health insurance premiums, or checking with your provider can give you an option for payment and let you know all your options regarding getting the proper treatment.

What Risks Do The LGBTQ+ Community Face When It Comes To Substance Abuse

Are you concerned about the LGBTQ+ substance abuse risk? Recent studies are only asking for the gender of users to be unable to compile data on the dangers posed to the LGBTQ+ community when it comes to substance abuse.

What is known is that there is a high level of discrimination against sexual minorities, and this factor alone can lead members of the LGBTQ+ community to explore substances to help relieve stress and worry in their lives. 

However, the limited data on this topic is becoming increasingly apparent that sexual minorities have higher levels of substance abuse than those who identify as heterosexual.

Why Is Drug Abuse Prevalent in the LGBTQ+ Community?

Minorities often face many challenges in their lives from the wider community. With the increasing use of social media and more people being connected online, so has the ability for others to face discrimination and hate in their day-to-day lives.

From being rejected by family and friends, hate crimes, self-hatred, bullying, and loss of or limited employment options, those who don’t identify as heterosexual often face uphill struggles to live their lives, which makes the appeal of using substances to forget about these problems more attractive.

Substance Abuse and Sexual Minorities

More than a third of people who identify as lesbian, gay, or bisexual reported marijuana use in the previous 12 months in data compiled by the 2018 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH). This figure is higher than heterosexual adults of the same age, which was a reported 16.2%.

Worryingly, opioid use is on the rise within the LGBTQ+ community and those described as sexual minorities, with 9% resorting to using compared to 3.8% of the overall adult population in the 18-25 age range. 

Alcohol abuse was reported by 12.4% of the sexual minority young adults surveyed, which, while higher than the general population of 10.1%, remained stable from the 2015 study.

LGBTQ+ Substance Abuse Risk and Treatment

While substance abuse risk is something that can affect everyone, figures are an indication that those who face increased pressure and struggle to simply exist, such as those who identify as anything other than heterosexual, are more susceptible to trying different substances and developing an addiction they are unable to walk away from.

Studies of addiction treatment programs have indicated that specialized groups for sexual minorities can have more of an impact than simply a general group when dealing with their issues. This is down to them being able to relate more to their peers and feeling more comfortable discussing the problems that led to their dependency.

As LGBTQ+ people are also at a higher risk of mental health disorders, offering a nontraditional approach to addiction treatment can offer a greater chance of focusses in the long term. 

Whether as in inpatient, partial hospitalization, or an intensive outpatient program. It is essential to screen transgender teens and young adults for psychiatric conditions to further support their recovery and help them as best as possible. 
Identifying triggers, thoughts, and behavior patterns are vital to overcoming addictions and working with LGBTQ+ people in a way that supports who they are and how they can live their lives free from addiction.

Substance Abuse In College Students

Studies into substance abuse in college students have correlated early drug abuse and abuse problems in later life. However, what drives teens to use drugs in college, and how bad is the problem?

Drug Abuse and College

College is supposed to be a time of self-discovery and, for many young people, their first time living away from home. Sadly, college for most teens isn’t the first time they will have come into contact with drugs.

Although drugs are prevalent in this environment, many more teens are exposed to drug culture to help them navigate college life.

Most Common Drugs Used By College Students

Studies have found that marihuana abuse is more common for those aged 21-22, while more than 20% of college students surveyed had been exposed to cocaine while on campus.

However, an increasingly large number of college students are becoming addicted to prescription opioids or painkiller abuse, which sadly is a leading cause of death by overdose in those aged 18-25.

Micro dosing has become a trend in recent years. Micro dosing is taking just enough to have a negligible effect but nothing too noticeable. MDMA and ecstasy are also becoming more popular with the college-aged population, with more students using them out of curiosity.

The same survey by National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) indicated that while drugs appear to be freely available in college, alcohol abuse is still a big problem for this age range, with many students not realizing they have moved past social drinking to a more dependent nature. 

Students see drinking alcohol at college as almost a rite of passage, but this isn’t their first experience with drinking heavily. Some students arrived at college with pre-existing alcohol dependency issues.

The Effects of Substance Abuse on College Students

Students typically take drugs or alcohol to help them relax, enjoy themselves, and to help them keep up with the demands of college life and pressure. Sadly, in some cases, this can lead to substance abuse and will end up detrimental to their life and health moving forward.

From decreased focus and attention leading to failed classes or courses to the loss of income due to being able to hold down a job or internships during this time to a loss of their reputation amongst their peers as well as harming family relationships. Students with a history of drug or alcohol abuse are more at risk of suffering from mental health issues if they don’t already as well as the set of physical health issues such as weight loss or gain, lack of energy, skin conditions and more.

Moving forward, substance abuse can follow them into adult life past college and impact their ability to live their life, gain employment and lead to many physical and mental health issues.

There is help available for students who are worried about substance abuse, and in many cases, they may be covered on their parent’s insurance for rehab treatment. For students, it is essential to address the root cause of their addiction. 
A unique approach that uses modern and traditional addiction treatment methods can help achieve sobriety and avoid further addiction problems in the future. Whether they choose inpatient treatment to help them overcome their substance abuse or opt for partial hospitalization or outpatient treatment, ensuring you select the suitable treatment facility can help teens overcome addiction issues and get their lives back on track.

What Happens During Alcohol Rehab Withdrawal

America has increasingly rising rates of alcohol abuse, with currently 15 million people thought to have an alcohol use disorder in the US alone.

That being said, not everyone who needs treatment for reliance on alcohol gets it, with only one and a half million entering rehab each year to address their addiction.

Considering alcohol rehab can be a significant step toward sobriety, and for those looking at entering rehab, knowing what to expect from alcohol withdrawals can prepare you for the process.

Alcohol Addiction Withdrawal

An addiction treatment center can offer either inpatient or outpatient treatment options. Whether you choose an inpatient or outpatient program for alcohol addiction, acknowledging you need help to overcome substance abuse is the first step. 

The severity of the addiction and volume of alcohol consumed will play a massive part in the treatment plan and how it is approached in an inpatient or an intensive outpatient program. You will need to be assessed due to the medical complications that can arise from withdrawals from alcohol.

Alcohol withdrawal symptoms can vary from person to person and can include some or all of the following:

  • Sweating 
  • Nausea
  • Shaking
  • Tremors
  • Disturbed sleep
  • Hallucinations
  • Vomiting
  • Anxiety
  • Restlessness
  • Seizures
  • Mood changes
  • Irritability
  • Loss of appetite
  • Pain
  • Intense cravings

People experiencing alcohol withdrawal can experience severe manifestations and intense symptoms associated with their bodies craving the substance that is being denied. Residing in a treatment center for inpatient care can allow medical professionals to work with you to alleviate some of these symptoms to make the process easier for you. However, moving past the withdrawal stage is possible even without on-hand medical treatment.

How Long Does Alcohol Withdrawal Last?

Many people experiencing mild withdrawal symptoms may not even seek treatment; however, those with increased consumption or more extended periods of dependence can benefit from the intervention of addiction specialists who can help them through the process.

For some, it can be over within a few days; however, for others, they can be experiencing withdrawal for a few weeks as their bodies and minds adjust to sobriety.

Once the alcohol starts leaving the body, individuals will begin to experience any number of symptoms depending on their treatment plan and approach. In the first instance, physical symptoms such as vomiting or tremors can become apparent, with the potential for seizures most probable within the first 48 hours. A tailored approach can better address the reason behind the addiction, not just the addiction itself.

Despite being completely aware of their surroundings, those in withdrawal may experience alcohol hallucinosis, leading to increased stress, mental confusion, and disorientation.

It is worth noting the complications that can arise from alcohol withdrawals, including but not limited to; pancreatitis, gastritis, strokes, liver disease, cardiomyopathy, and more.
Successful treatment allows for the improved success of sobriety in the long term. This includes the application of both traditional and modern therapeutic methods that address the addiction and the reasons behind it when a person becomes addicted to alcohol, and how they can avoid relapsing in the future.

5 Ways to Manage Chronic Pain Without Narcotic Drugs

Millions of people across the country live with chronic pain. Some are recovering from accidents, sports injuries or surgeries while others suffer from chronic headaches or joint and back pain. To help them cope with this pain, millions of prescriptions for pain medications are written annually. Some of these prescriptions are for opioids.

Opioids, also referred to as narcotics, are strong pain medications that are great for short-term or acute pain e.g. pain after surgery or broken bones. They are not ideal for chronic pain such as back pain or arthritis because there’s an increased risk of addiction if they are taken for a long time. They also cause a range of unpleasant side effects including breathing problems, slowed heart rate, mental health disturbance, and mood swings. The body may also develop tolerance to these narcotics meaning that you may need to keep taking higher doses to achieve the same pain relief. This is dangerous and is often the cause of my opioid-related deaths.

Common opioids include fentanyl, codeine, oxycodone, and morphine. Their brand names include OxyContin, Vicodin, Palladone, and Percocet. These medications can be effective in pain management but should only be used according to your physician’s instructions to minimize the side effects and the risk of addiction.

If you’re suffering from chronic pain and don’t want to use narcotics, there are alternative ways to manage the pain. These include:

Over-the-counter (OTC) painkillers.

It often comes as a surprise to many that some OTC painkillers are more effective than opioids at managing or getting rid of pain. Some of these alternative medications are available over-the-counter and you can get them without a prescription. For example, acetaminophen, sold as Tylenol and Panadol is great for managing mild to moderate pain while nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs) such as Advil, Motrin, and Excedrin are great at decreasing inflammation which in turn reduces pain. The great thing about these medications is that they have few side effects if any, and they can be taken along with other medicines without any contraindications.

Exercise and weight loss.

Regular exercise is the last thing you want to hear about if you’re in chronic pain. However, done regularly, the gentle movement and activity of some exercises such as swimming, cycling, or walking can help you recover from pain. These exercises help loosen tight muscles in the body, making you more flexible and improving blood circulation. These in turn help speed up your body’s natural healing process. Additionally, exercising triggers the release of dopamine and serotonin and both these hormones help improve mood and play a role in suppressing or blocking pain.

Along with regular exercise, you should consider getting your weight down to your recommended range if you’re suffering from chronic pain. Most painful health conditions e.g. arthritis may be aggravated by excess weight as this puts more pressure on the joints. Losing weight can help alleviate this pressure, leading to reduced pain.

Physiotherapy and therapeutic massage.

These methods ease pain by stretching and strengthening the muscles with the help of a physiotherapist or masseuse. Physiotherapy is normally prescribed after an accident or other condition leaves you with chronic pain. During these sessions, you’ll be guided through a series of stretches and exercises to help you rehabilitate the injured muscles and improve their range of motion and function while decreasing your pain.

Therapeutic massage, on the other hand, works the tension and kinks from the muscles and joints using gentle pressure. A beneficial side effect is that this helps to also relieve anxiety and stress while introducing pleasant sensations that override pain signals. Both methods are great because they not only ease pain but also reduce strain and the risk of future injury.

Using cold and/or heat.

These classic go-to pain-relieving methods are still effective in easing certain types of chronic pain. Cold is known to relieve pain by decreasing inflammation and muscle spasms while speeding recovery. Heat, on the other hand, works by relaxing muscles and raising your pain threshold. You may have to use a homemade heat compress or cold pack several times a day over a range of days to get the full benefit.

If that doesn’t do it, you can ask a physiotherapist or chiropractor for more modern methods of heat or cold treatment. These can better penetrate the tissues and muscles, to ease pain. For instance, in cold laser therapy, a single wavelength of pure light is emitted and absorbed into the injured area, reducing inflammation and stimulating tissue repair. Another example is radiofrequency ablation where heat is used to reduce pain by inserting a needle near a problematic nerve and burning it using an electric current produced by radio waves. These methods can relieve pain in affected muscles for up to a year.

Integrative medicine techniques.

This includes yoga and tai chi, acupuncture, or mind-body techniques that are used to relieve pain by tapping into the mind-body connection.

Yoga and tai chi, for example, use gentle repetitive movements to stretch and strengthen different muscle groups by strengthening the mind-body connection. These movements are quite effective for low back pain and arthritis.

Mind-body techniques such as meditation and mindfulness, help you restore a sense of control over your body using breathing exercises and focusing your thoughts on the present moment. They alleviate pain by helping you calm your thoughts, leading to relaxation and reduced muscle tension.

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