How to Know If You Have Alcohol Addiction

So…How to Know If You Have Alcohol Addiction

Sometimes the easiest way to answer a question is with another question. So, ask yourself this. What is going on in your life that made you search ‘How to Know If You Have Alcohol Addiction’? You didn’t land on this page by accident while shopping for a new microwave after all. It’s safe to assume something prompted you try to find out how to know if you have alcohol addiction. Let’s rewind a bit. Maybe someone said something to you about your drinking. The possibility that you might have a problem with alcohol may not have occurred to you until someone suggested it because of your behavior. Many people start looking at themselves in a situation very much like that.

 

How Did I Get Here?

Perhaps there’s been a change in your routine? Your regular drinking is causing you problems it hasn’t before. You’re waking up with a hangover more often. You are seeing alcohol addiction symptoms. Or maybe you’ve broken a promise to yourself or someone else. I won’t drink during the week. Or I won’t drink before 6 pm. Believe it or not, these are also very common ways which we arrive at this crossroads. How you get there isn’t important though. What matters is you did and you’re here. While that may not seem like a positive to you, we’re here to tell you it absolutely is. If you have a drinking problem, it isn’t going to solve itself. Admitting there is a problem, any problem, is the first step towards solving it. That’s why this is a positive development and you should look at it that way. Would you believe that someday you will look back on this point with gratitude and even a modicum of pride?

 

Here’s How to Know If You Have Alcohol Addiction

Back to the matter at hand. What is alcohol addiction anyway? Sometimes called alcoholism, alcohol addiction is the inability to control your drinking because of a physical and psychological dependence on alcohol. That’s it in a nutshell. So, there’s a few questions right in that definition there that you can ask yourself. That’s a great way how to know if you have alcohol addiction. Here are the questions:

 

  • Do you have an inability to control your drinking?
  • Have you tried to cut down or stop, only to start up again or drink the same or more?
  • Are you physically dependent on alcohol?
  • What happens if you go 24 hours without a drink? 48 hours? 3 days? How about a week? Do you get anxious or grouchy? Trouble sleeping? Maybe worse?
  • Are you psychologically dependent on alcohol?
  • What’s the first thing you do when you get some bad news? How would you feel about going to a party where you knew there would be no alcohol allowed?

Chances are we don’t even need to give you the answers to the questions above. If you ask yourself all of them and answer honestly, you will know what the answers mean. But there is one really important question you have yet to answer. This is the most important question in this whole article in fact. It’s the only one that really matters.

 

What Am I Willing to Do About It? 

This is the million-dollar question. We’ve explained how to know if you have alcohol addiction. We’ve laid out alcohol addiction symptoms for you above. But knowing you have a problem with alcohol doesn’t change anything. Change doesn’t come from realization. It comes from action. That’s where the rubber meets the road. You know that millions of people have recovered from alcoholism. It’s not a secret after all. Common sense should tell you that lots of those people had harder lives and sadder stories than you, but they still got sober. We’re not saying that to give you a hard time. It’s very much the opposite in fact.

 

We tell you that because it’s a reason to have hope. Lots and lots of people who others thought would never get sober did. Recovering alcoholics are remarkable people. They defy the odds all the time, in all kinds of ways. Maybe the coolest thing about them is they love nothing more than to help someone who is in the same predicament. That bodes well for you because it means you aren’t alone. You don’t have to do this by yourself. It’s not just you versus the bottle. You have a whole army on your side in this war if you want it.

 

Conclusion

Overcoming alcohol addiction is absolutely possible. Not only that, but recovery can do much better than just give you your life back. If you follow the directions on the box, recovery will result in you being the best version of you. It goes way beyond just getting the booze out of your life. It will teach you how to be an outstanding human being. You’ll repair damaged relationships, mend fences and bury hatchets. You’ll find happiness and peace of mind you never thought possible. Then you’ll help others do the same. That’s how it works. If you or someone you love is living with alcohol addiction, give Recovery by the Sea a call at (877) 207-5033 or connect to us through our contact page right here.

Learn How To Overcome Benzo Addiction

Learn How To Overcome Benzo Addiction

How Can I Learn to Overcome Benzo Addiction?

If you want to know how to overcome benzo addiction, start at the beginning. The first thing you will likely need is a safe and comfortable medical detox. This is especially important when it comes to benzos like Xanax or Klonopin. The reason is that benzo withdrawal is one of the few types of withdrawal that can be potentially fatal. We tell you this not to worry you, but so that you’ll take it seriously. There is no reason to fear a benzo detox as long as you get professional medical help. You must never try to detox yourself off of benzos. That is very important to remember. You must also never abruptly stop taking benzos because there is a possibility of seizures, which can in some cases be fatal.

 

How to Overcome Benzo Addiction, Step One:  Detox

When a person stops taking benzos, they undergo withdrawal because their brain and body have become accustomed to the presence of benzodiazepines. As they flush out the drugs from their system, both their mind and body react, resulting in withdrawal symptoms. Benzo withdrawal symptoms can be extremely difficult and painful, especially for people who have used benzos for a long time. However, even short-term use can result in a difficult detoxification process. In addition to withdrawal symptoms, the original symptoms that the benzo treated often manifest. This “rebound effect” can make benzo withdrawal even more painful and difficult for the person.

 

Benzo Withdrawal Symptoms 

Within 1-6 Hours:

Benzo withdrawal symptoms can appear as early as six hours after the last dose, they can include:

  • Vomiting
  • Insomnia
  • Dry Heaving
  • Nausea

Within 24-36 Hours:

This is the acute withdrawal phase. Usually this is when the worst withdrawal symptoms will appear. These symptoms may be experiences in addition to those listed above:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Panic attacks
  • Dizziness
  • Restlessness
  • Weakness
  • Muscle pain
  • Tremors
  • Sweating
  • Convulsions

 

Detox is an Important Part of the “How” in How to Overcome Benzo Addiction

You don’t have to experience any of those symptoms above. All or most of the above can be avoided by simply getting a medical detox under supervision in a controlled environment. Coming off of benzos in a safe and controlled manner must always be the first thing you do if you want to know how to overcome benzo addiction. The best addiction treatment centers will have a close affiliation with a quality medical detox facility and some may have a detox on site.

The detox and treatment phases are by far the shortest part of the whole process. Detox from benzos takes anywhere from a week to several weeks in the most extreme cases. Treatment afterwards may last anywhere from a month to 3 months or more, depending on the outpatient and aftercare plan you follow. Take advantage of all the help you can get. Detoxing from benzos is tough. If you made it this far, you do not want to backslide and potentially relapse and have to do it all over again.

 

How to Overcome Benzo Addiction, Step Two:  Treatment

Once you are safely detoxed, the next step is getting treatment. You’ll want to get as much help as possible. The reason is that recovery can be a challenge. You just went through the effort of detoxing. We doubt you want to do it again in 3 months or 6 months or a year from now. So you want to stay sober. The best way to do that is to get to the root of why you became dependent in the first place. If you take benzos for anxiety, then you will want to make sure your diagnosis was accurate. If you still have anxiety, there are several non-narcotic medications which can help you without the addiction element. Beyond medication there are many other things you can do to minimize and manage anxiety. Many of them are surprising to people. Everything from nutrition to exercise plays a role in anxiety along with brain chemistry. Eating a healthy diet, getting regular exercise and adopting mindfulness enhancing habits like meditation, prayer and/or yoga can all make a real impact on improving anxiety symptoms.

 

How to Overcome Benzo Addiction, Step Three :  Recovery

When you’re looking at how to overcome benzo addiction, the final phase is recovery. This is also the longest part because it lasts the rest of your life. Don’t let that idea overwhelm you though. This is why they say, “one day at a time”. That really is how recovery works. The good news is recovery is all about personal growth. You don’t HAVE to recover. You GET to recover. Also, you get to spend the rest of your life becoming the best version of you. That’s what recovery is all about and that’s what will make your anxiety manageable and enable you to live a happy, productive life without addictive drugs.

Contact Recovery by the Sea for help with benzos or any other addiction or mental health disorder. You can call us toll free at (877) 207-5033 or connect via our contact page here.

Cocaine Addiction and ADHD: Are They Connected?

Cocaine Addiction and ADHD

How Are Cocaine Addiction and ADHD Connected? 

If you have attention deficit disorder or ADHD, a connection between cocaine addiction and ADHD might not surprise you. Having an adult child with ADHD, you may have even seen addiction become a problem. As a parent of a child with ADHD, this information is relevant to you as well. In this article Recovery by the Sea looks at the possible connections between cocaine addiction and ADHD. We’ll also examine the challenges of ADHD and how they may make someone with it more apt to become addicted to cocaine or other drugs.

 

What Does the Science Tell Us? 

A clinical study published in the American Journal of Psychiatry found that teenagers with ADHS who took Ritalin but stopped it before they became adults are two times as likely to become addicted to cocaine. While this is only one study, there is plenty of other research and anecdotal evidence that indicates more than a casual connection between ADHD and addiction. The relationship between ADHD and addiction is complicated. It’s not going to be easily unraveled here. What we do know is that science has shown plausible connections.

We also know that ADHD affects impulse control and that people with less impulse control are more likely to become addicted to drugs. Finally, there is the brain chemistry involved. People with ADHD have lower levels of certain neurotransmitters in their brains. Specifically, dopamine and norepinephrine. These neurotransmitters are involved in the transmission of signals in the brain. Certain stimulants help the brain maintain higher levels of these neurotransmitters which helps alleviate ADHD symptoms. That is how drugs like Ritalin and Adderall help. Unfortunately, it’s also part of the reason there may be a connection between cocaine addiction and ADHD.

 

Doesn’t ADHD Just “Go Away” in Adulthood Though?

ADHD isn’t fully understood yet. Science is still discovering more and more about the inner workings of the brain every year. What we do know is that ADHD manifests as difficulty focusing, trouble prioritizing tasks and organizing. It also involves impulse control. It’s not unusual for adults with ADHD to have financial problems due to disorganization or impulse buying. People with ADHD often struggle in school all the way through college and may have trouble in their careers as adults. In the early days of attention deficit research, it was thought that ADHD was something that happened during childhood and that people would just “grow out of it”. We’ve since come to understand that doesn’t happen.

 

What Features of ADHD Might Make Addiction More Likely?

What we were witnessing is people with ADHD developing varying degrees of coping mechanisms to get by in a world that is very distracting. Some do this better than others. They may choose a career that lends itself to the qualities of ADHD (or at least isn’t as threatened by them as some). Others may get on medications and stay on them through adulthood. Still others try biofeedback or even meditation to improve focus. But in every case, ADHD is still present in some form. As of now there is no cure for ADHD, only treatment and intervention. In trying to understand cocaine addiction and ADHD, it’s helpful to know what aspects of ADHD might play a role in development of addiction.

Here are some factors of ADHD which could play a role in developing an addiction:

  • Impulsivity: Research has shown that people with poor impulse control are more likely to become addicts.
  • Risk-Taking: Part of the impulsivity is risk taking behaviors. Many people with ADHD are easily bored and crave stimulation, this is also a risk factor for addiction.
  • Self-Medicating: A person with ADHD will actually get some relief from their symptoms when they use cocaine and other stimulants. This could encourage use.
  • Rebound Effect:   As mentioned in the clinical study above, teenagers who used Ritalin but stopped before adulthood are twice as likely to use cocaine to regain the relief.
  • Depression: People with ADHD are more likely to have a co-occurring disorder such as depression. People with depression are more likely to use cocaine or other drugs to change how they feel.

Conclusion 

There is some evidence of a connection between cocaine addiction and ADHD. We know that people with ADHD are at a potentially higher risk of addiction and high-risk behaviors in general. However, do not let this discourage you. The important thing here is awareness. Knowing that these risk factor exist empowers you to do something to minimize those risks. That may be making sure to manage ADHD effectively. It could also include avoiding all intoxicants and living a sober life, even if you have not had a problem with addiction yet. The main thing is to be aware that the risk exists so you can be proactive about it.

If you or someone you love is struggling with cocaine addiction, Recovery by the Sea can help. Give us a call at (877) 207-5033 or reach out to us via our contact page here.

How Long Does a Meth High Last?

How Long Does a Meth High Last

How Long Does a Meth High Last and Why?

What is Crystal Methamphetamine?

Crystal methamphetamine is an illegally manufactured amphetamine. How long does a meth high last? That depends on a number of factors. The most relevant factor is usually how the amphetamine is consumed. How long a meth high is depends in part on how a person gets the drug into their body in the first place. There are several methods. It is important to note that there is no “safe” way to use meth however.

Anyone who tries to convince themselves that their drug use is somehow acceptable because they “only” snort it instead of smoking or injecting, is lying to themselves. There is no such thing as a “casual user”. Not for long anyway. It isn’t a social drug like alcohol or even marijuana, which some people who are not addicts can use occasionally without nasty repercussions. Make no mistake. Crystal methamphetamine is a very powerful, very dangerous drug manufactured from dangerous chemicals. It is not “safe” to use. If you want to know “how long is a meth high”, the first thing to consider is the route of administration.

Let’s look at the major ways in which people use this drug:

  • Intranasally:   Snorting the powder form.
  • Smoking:   Burning the crystalized/rock form.
  • Intravenous:   Injecting a liquid solution of meth into the veins.
  • Orally:  Swallowing a tablet containing meth or mixing the powder into a drink.
  • Rectally:   Putting meth into the rectum, aka “booty-bumping” (this is much less common than other methods)

How Long is a Meth High?

To answer the question “How long does a meth high last” we need to look at the person and how it’s used. We also need to consider the conditions. How you use the drug also has an effect on how quickly the effects begin and how intense they are. All drugs affect us by entering the brain via the bloodstream. The more quickly a drug enters the bloodstream and the more of it makes it to the brain, the greater the effects. In general, swallowing a drug is the slowest route of administration.

This is because the drug has to make it’s way through the digestive system which takes longer and more of the drug can be “lost” that way. If there is any food present, that can slow absorption further. Snorting or smoking a drug gets more of it into the system more rapidly. The nasal membrane can rapidly get drug into the bloodstream and the lungs oxygenate our blood, so inhaling crystal methamphetamine smoke gets meth into the bloodstream quickly. Injecting is perhaps the most direct method though as you are bypassing other organs and putting the compound directly into the blood.

Understanding What Meth Does to the Body

How long does a meth high last also varies according to the amount, potency/purity and form. It varies from person to person to, because everyone’s metabolism and biology is different. With all that said: How long does a meth high last? Anywhere from 6-8 hours to as long as 24 hours. A person who snorts a very small amount might notice most of the effects wearing off after 6 hours or so. A person who ingests more will feel the effects much longer. Meth users tend to binge.

Ironically, the drug itself induces compulsive behaviors and one of the most common compulsions it triggers is the desire to use more. The meth crash that follows a period of use can be devastating. Most people who use with any regularity are going to use it a lot more than once in a 24 hour period. It is not uncommon for users to go on a “run” that lasts several days. Crystal methamphetamine is a powerful stimulant and users with often go without sleep for days on end. Sleep deprivation by itself can cause irritability and hallucinations. Combined with crystal use, psychotic symptoms are frequently seen on these extended periods of use.

How Long Does a Meth High Last and What are the Long-Term Effects?

Have you ever seen someone who uses meth regularly, or even a photograph of a chronic user?  If so, it’s not surprising to hear that crystal is devastating to human health. There are few drugs which can cause as much physical and psychological destruction as crystal does in such a short period of time. If you use meth or know someone who does, there are more important questions to ask than “how long does a meth high last”. For example, “What are the long-term effects of meth use?” is a much better question. Anyone who uses meth or knows someone who does owes it to themselves to know the answers.

Here are just a few of the long-term effects of crystal methamphetamine use:

  • Memory loss
  • Severe dental problems
  • Unhealthy weight loss
  • Psychosis, including paranoia and hallucinations
  • Permanent changes in brain structure and function
  • Violent or aggressive behavior and mood disturbances
  • How Can Meth Addiction Be Conquered?

We won’t sugarcoat the truth for you. Overcoming meth addiction is hard. The good news is there is hope. Millions of people have recovered from crystal meth addiction. However, it does take some willingness and commitment. Very, very few people can do it alone. Willpower alone is almost never enough. If you or someone you love is struggling with meth addiction, call Recovery by the Sea at (877) 207-5033 or visit our contact page here for other ways to reach us.

Cocaine Detox

Cocaine detox is accessible.

Detoxification from Cocaine

Anyone thinking about quitting cocaine is going to experience cocaine detox. The detoxification process from cocaine can be difficult. How difficult it is depends on how long the person has used, or how much they have been using. When someone has been using frequently, they can expect stopping to be more difficult. This is also true for anyone who uses large amounts. Even people who have only been using a short time may have some symptoms, although they might not require medical cocaine detox. This is because cocaine is such a fast-acting drug. Here’s what to know about quitting cocaine.

What is Detox

When a person uses any drug, it stays in their system. After they stop using, the drug needs time to leave their body. The cocaine detox process is designed to make this more comfortable. Their body also needs time to learn to operate without the drug. This period of time is known as detox, which is short for detoxification. This is the absolute first step in recovery.
During detox a person goes through withdrawal. Withdrawal is what happens when a body becomes dependent on a drug. When that drug is taken away, the person’s body must reach a new state of equilibrium. This means learning to live without the drug.
Detox and withdrawal are typically very uncomfortable. This is because the chemistry of the person’s mind and body are being changed. This discomfort can often lead to relapse. Which is why coping with detoxification is important.

Quitting Cocaine

Cocaine addiction can take many forms. The more severe the addiction, the harder it will be to quit. For instance, those who smoke crack or inject cocaine will have a harder time stopping. This is because their body is used to a purer, more concentrated form of the drug. Those who typically snorted cocaine will face a slightly easier path. Either way, most of the withdrawal symptoms will be the same. They will simply be more severe in people who used more intense forms of the drug.
Here are the symptoms of cocaine withdrawal to expect:

• Intense cravings for cocaine.
• Depression and anxiety.
• Sweating and shaking.
• Paranoia
• Suicidal thoughts and suicide attempts.
• Irritability and agitation leading to hostility.
• Lower activity levels along with slower thinking.
• Poor concentration.
• Vivid dreams and nightmares.
• Seizures.

These symptoms can start just an hour and a half after the last use of the drug. They typically go on for 3 to 5 days. However, they can last a week to 10 days.
Cocaine withdrawal is uncomfortable, but it is one of the better types of withdrawal out there. Withdrawal from alcohol can be fatal. Quitting opioids can be extremely painful. By comparison, cocaine is physically easier. However, because cocaine provides extreme highs, the cravings are often worse than with many other drugs.

Coping with Quitting

There are numerous ways to deal with quitting cocaine. Here are a few simple steps to take to make the process easier:

• Check into a medically-assisted detox facility.
• Join an outpatient detox program.
• Consult with a physician to get medication to assist with withdrawal.
• Take time off work or school so that your body has time to rest.
• Speak with a counselor or therapist to help cope with uncomfortable emotions.
• Go to support group meetings for input from others on how to cope. Also to gain support.

Though stopping cocaine is not fatal itself, it is still dangerous. There are many side-effects that can lead to death. This is especially true in long-term users. Anyone who has used cocaine for more than a year is considered a long-term user. Quitting is likewise extremely unpleasant. In order to reduce the problems, it is best to work with an official detox facility. They can often provide medication to ease the difficulties. They can also monitor your health. Doing this ensures that any potential problems are addressed before they become serious. Doing it alone is not only harder, it is more dangerous.
If you’re considering stopping cocaine, the more help you have, the better. The psychological symptoms are often as hard to deal with as the physical ones. With assistance, you can treat both the body and mind. This will make quitting that much easier. It will also help prepare you for living sober, which usually requires a lot of help to do successfully.

When You’re Ready to Stop

If you’ve reached the point where you’re ready to quit cocaine, then reach out to us for help. Our program includes medical detox for cocaine. We monitor each person closely and provide them with all the tools they need to quit with the least amount of pain. We help treat the mental and physical parts to help prevent relapse. Once the medical detox is over, we create a personalized program for each person. These programs address all of their needs and help them learn to build a sober existence. Don’t let cocaine steal another day from you. Call us today and let us help you reclaim your life!

Benzos and Alcohol

Benzos and alcohol are a deadly combination.

Benzos and Alcohol

The combining of benzos and alcohol is more common than you might imagine. Each of these substances can be dangerous on its own. However, they are even more hazardous when taking them together. People who have an alcohol and benzo addiction are at greater risk of dying from respiratory arrest than someone who uses only one or the other. The main reason for this is because both these substances depress the central nervous system and in combination they amplify each others effects. This makes accidental overdose far more likely because the results can be unpredictable.

Whether you are the person mixing these substances or it is someone you care about. Dependence on both alcohol and benzos is a behavior that must not be ignored.

 

Defining Benzodiazepines

Doctors often prescribe benzodiazepines to treat mental health conditions such as PTSD or anxiety. Sometimes, doctors prescribe them for physical conditions such as cerebral palsy or seizures, as well.

There are several different benzodiazepines that people abuse. Some of the most common ones include:

  • Valium
  • Klonopin
  • Ativan
  • Xanax

If someone takes these medications exactly as their doctor prescribes them, they should be safe as long as they are never combined with alcohol. However, if someone abuses benzos, a dangerous addiction could develop quickly.

Adding alcohol to the mix can make things even worse. The damage to the body and mind can be severe, so it is crucial to get into a treatment program if you are abusing these substances.

 

Side Effects of Benzos and Alcohol

The combination of two powerful depressants like benzos and alcohol amplifies the effect. The impact can be unpredictable and sadly overdoses where the user simply stops breathing are more common than you think.

Most of the time, even if someone is only abusing one of these, they can still have severe consequences. Some side effects of mixing alcohol and benzodiazepines include:

  • Slower breathing
  • Depression of the immune system
  • Impaired cognition
  • Organ failure
  • Losing consciousness
  • Coma
  • Death

These are some of the more severe side effects. By the time these happen it may be too late. Get treatment before things get worse.

 

Other Dangers of Alcohol and Benzo Addiction

Some people have fatal consequences due to an alcohol and benzo addiction. The truth is that no one can control the side effects they get from medications. The effects from each of these substances on their own can be harmful enough. Mixing them amplifies the impact and can lead to the following:

  • Self-destructive behaviors
  • Bodily harm
  • Hurting others
  • Losing coordination
  • Liver cirrhosis
  • Stroke
  • Permanent brain damage

Alcohol and benzos damage the immune system, central nervous system and many organs in the body. Depending on how much of these substances you use and how often you use them, organ failure can happen in a few years. If you take too many benzos with alcohol, you could have a fatal overdose. Even if you don’t consider the risk of death, the harm done to the body is very serious. Stopping benzos and alcohol abruptly without a medical detox can also lead to deadly seizures. You should never attempt to quit alcohol or benzos “cold turkey”. It can be incredibly dangerous.

In addition to these consequences, if you mix alcohol and benzodiazepines, your inhibitions will be lower. Lower inhibitions mean you will be more likely to engage in riskier behaviors. If you take part in risky behaviors, that could damage your relationships with friends and family members. It could also put you in a dangerous situation, such as driving while under the influence.

Getting Treatment for Alcohol and Benzo Abuse

It is dangerous to mix alcohol and benzos. The dangers don’t just extend to you. You could be putting others at risk due to your actions while under the influence. You are more likely to act without inhibition. This can lead to serious injuries or reckless sexual behavior that results in an STD, rape or unwanted pregnancy.

If you or someone that you know is abusing these substances, now is the time to stop. It takes courage and dedication to quit any addiction. However, we are here for you.

We want to note again, that it could be hazardous to detox on your own at home. Some of the withdrawal symptoms can be not just highly uncomfortable but fatal. In addition, many people who try to detox at home often relapse. They crave drugs or alcohol so badly that when they use again, they take a lot. The increased amount is one reason why so many people have a fatal overdose.

Willpower is vital for recovery from benzos and alcohol, but it isn’t enough by itself for most people. However, it is helpful to have people by your side helping you through the detox and recovery process. Rehab center professionals know all about substance use disorders and the treatment for them. They will look at your case and create an individualized treatment plan for you.

With the treatment program at Recovery by the Sea, you will get the compassionate, understanding and helpful recovery services you need to move through to the path of healing.

 

Contact Recovery by the Sea today to start the detox process from benzos and alcohol.

 

Crack vs. Cocaine: What’s the Difference?

The difference between crack vs cocaine.

Crack Vs Cocaine: Aren’t They The Same?

Crack is a product made from cocaine. So, crack and cocaine have the same source. The similarities between them outnumber the differences. Cocaine and crack addiction continue to plague our nation. In 2019, over 16,000 people died by cocaine overdose. Furthermore, a global pandemic continues to afflict the world. One should not feel dismay that people seek relief via cocaine and crack.

 

In this article, Recovery By The Sea examines the following topics:

 

  • A little history on cocaine and where it came from
  • What kind of drug cocaine is and what it does to the body
  • The differences between cocaine and crack
  • Crack vs. cocaine: consumption and side effects
  • How to get help for cocaine vs. addiction

 

A Little History On Cocaine And Where It Came From

Cocaine originates in South America, particularly the area of the Andes mountains. It is a byproduct of the coca plant, which grows there natively. The indigenous Inca people had incorporated the coca plant into their faith traditions. They also used it for medicinal purposes, like easing pain. An Incan amauta, or spiritual teacher, might use the coca leaves to divine the fate or future of a person.

 

What Kind Of Drug Cocaine Is And What It Does To The Body

Researchers classify cocaine as a stimulant. This means it “stimulates” the brain and body. Our brain and spinal cord connect to form the central nervous system (CNS). First, the brain sends out an electrical impulse. That impulse travels down the spine. From there, it goes into the nerves. This process controls much about how we think, feel, and act. Cocaine makes these nerve impulses move much faster.

A Closer Look At Cocaine In The Brain

The brain’s messages are called neurotransmitters. Cocaine effects one very important neurotransmitter: dopamine. Dopamine influences our mood. It motivates us to pursue what we want. Once we achieve what we want, dopamine rewards us with good feelings. Cocaine makes our brains produce more dopamine. But, it also prevents dopamine from being reabsorbed. This means that dopamine remains active in our brains for too long.

 

The Differences Between Cocaine And Crack

On the street, one will find cocaine as a white powder. However, dealers may mix cocaine with other substances. They do this to supplement their amount of cocaine. Ergo, they can make more money. But, purchasers end up paying the price (in more ways than one). If one buys cocaine on the street, one has no way of knowing what’s been mixed with it.

 

Dealers might mix cocaine with things like:

 

  • Opioids: painkillers like heroin, codeine, opium, and fentanyl
  • Talcum powder
  • Amphetamines: speed and uppers
  • Flour

 

Crack

Cocaine in the form of crystalline rocks is known as “crack.” The name comes from the sound that it makes when heated. Crack found its way into parts of the US around 1980. Throughout the 80s, it spread across large metropolitan areas. Dealers could make it on the cheap. And, crack isn’t hard to make. Dealers can make massive profits with it.

 

Crack Vs Cocaine: Consumption And Side Effects

One difference in crack vs cocaine is the ways in which users take the drugs. With cocaine, users will typically consume cocaine in one of four ways:

 

  • Insufflation: snorting or inhaling through the nose, sometimes via a straw
  • Inhalation: heating and smoking it in a pipe
  • Injection: Mixing cocaine with a liquid and puncturing the skin with a needle
  • Rubbing into the gums: often leads to numbness in the mouth, tongue, and jaw

 

Because crack comes in a solid rock form, users will usually inhale or smoke it.

 

Side Effects

Remember that cocaine is a stimulant. It speeds up the pace of neurotransmitters. This means that normal things the body does will happen faster too. Cocaine gives you energy. As a result, it disturbs your sleep. It can also cause nervousness, anxiety, and paranoia. Cocaine also elevates the heartrate and blood pressure. Consequently, it can cause cardiovascular problems. And even death.

 

But crack is more potent than powder cocaine. As a result, a person may crave more of it as soon as the first dose wears off. Crack is therefore more addictive and habit-forming than cocaine. Moreover, crack impacts the mood and temperament. Consistent crack users may have severe shifts in their feelings and affect. Crack can also lead to nausea and vomiting. It can damage the heart even faster than powder cocaine. Crack can also lead to extreme symptoms of psychosis. Users may experience delusions and hallucinations.

 

How To Get Help For Cocaine Vs Crack Addiction

In this article, you learned about where cocaine came from. We examined what effects crack vs cocaine have on the body. We looked at similarities and differences between crack and cocaine. Finally, we perused through symptoms and side effects.

 

If you or someone that you know struggles with addiction to crack vs cocaine, call Recovery By The Sea now. Or, fill out the contact form.

 

5 Signs of a Cocaine Overdose

cocaine overdose is incredibly dangerous

The Social Consequences of Cocaine Overdose

Drug overdose deaths skyrocketed in 2020. Cocaine overdose deaths have risen in a short time. Over a period of 5 years (2013 – 2018), cocaine overdoses tripled. Cocaine overdose deaths continue to increase across all age groups. In 2020, 4.1% of 12th graders said they had used cocaine at some point during their lives. 2.9% of that group admitted to consuming cocaine within the last month.

 

Cocaine overdose brings consequences both to society and to the individual. As members of that society, we must equip ourselves. We owe ourselves such preparation. And we likewise owe it to those around us.

 

In this article, Recovery By The Sea examines the following:

 

  • What exactly is cocaine and where does it come from?
  • How does cocaine effect the body?
  • What are the signs of a cocaine overdose?
  • How can long-term cocaine use effect one’s life?
  • What if I want help for cocaine use?

 

What Exactly Is Cocaine And Where Does It Come From?

We can trace cocaine’s historical origins to the Incan people of South America. These ancient peoples chewed the leaves of the coca plant. Cocaine as we know it came about in 1860. German chemist Albert Niemann gave us the synthetic form in use today. After Niemann, scientists continued to experiment with cocaine. Eventually, they introduced it into the field of medicine.

 

One form of cocaine looks like a white powder. Consumers of this form will inhale or snort it. Or, they might rub it into their gums. Another form of cocaine, referred to as “crack,” gets heated and then smoked. Crack purports to be even more potent than powder cocaine.

 

How Does Cocaine Effect The Mind?

We classify cocaine as a stimulant. This means that it acts on the processes of the brain. Cocaine makes these processes run faster. Our brains create a neurotransmitter called dopamine. Dopamine helps us feel good when we get something we want. Our bodies may make it when we eat, when we achieve a goal, or when someone praises us. Cocaine causes us to retain too much dopamine in our brains at one time.

 

A cocaine high makes a person more awake and aware. They may feel a surge of confidence. Alternatively, they may also experience heightened senses of fear and hypervigilance. Cocaine increases anxiety.

 

How Does Cocaine Effect the Body?

In addition to the mind, cocaine also wreaks havoc on the body. It causes the blood pressure to rise. Cocaine also raises the body temperature and heart rate. For these reasons, cocaine can cause lasting damage to the heart and lungs. It can even induce a heart attack.

 

What Are the Signs of A Cocaine Overdose?

Most cocaine overdose symptoms will likely originate in the heart. Cocaine interferes with proper oxygen flow in the heart and lungs. It also disrupts proper blood circulation. Someone experiencing an overdose may complain of tightness or pain in the chest. Their breathing may appear shallow, quick, and ragged. Likewise, look for dizziness, vomiting, and tremors.

 

In extreme cases, someone overdosing may experience a condition called cocaine-induced agitated delirium. This phenomenon remains rare, but it happens very quickly. Cocaine-induced agitated delirium causes the heart to beat erratically (or not at all). An extremely high fever, called hyperthermia, can become fatal if not addressed properly.

 

What Should I Do If I Believe Someone Has Overdosed On Cocaine?

If you believe that someone near you has overdosed on cocaine, remain calm. First and foremost, you must steady yourself. Call 911 and ask for an ambulance. Make sure you know the address of your location. If not, provide the 911 dispatcher with the nearest intersection.

 

If the overdosing person remains conscious, do your best to keep them calm. An overdosing person may panic. Do not attempt to restrain them. Doing so may put you in harm’s way. When paramedics arrive, recount everything you saw the person do prior to the overdose.

 

How Can Long-Term Cocaine Use Effect One’s Life?

Cocaine interrupts how our brains experience stress. When faced with stress, long-term consumers tend to retreat to it. Long-term use of cocaine also short-circuits our prefrontal cortex. This part of our brain governs our decisions and our ability to change our behavior. Consumers of cocaine experience severe anxiety. Cardiovascular problems tend to develop as use continues.

 

Prolonged cocaine use damages the mouth and nose. Nosebleeds become common. The inner tissue of the nasal passages deteriorates over time. Long-term consumers of cocaine may have trouble tasting or smelling.

 

What If I Want Help For Cocaine Use?

As we have observed, cocaine can have debilitating effects on the body and the mind. Together, we can prevent cocaine overdoses and deaths. Recovery By The Sea exists to see people liberated from addiction.

 

If you or someone that you love struggles with cocaine addiction, act now. Pick up the phone and call us. Or, send us a quick email.

 

Cocaine Addiction Treatment in FL

cocaine addiction treatment

The Best Cocaine Addiction Treatment In FL

You arrived here for a reason. You have been looking for cocaine addiction treatment in FL. Perhaps you seek treatment for yourself. Or, you have had an up-close-and-personal look at someone else suffering from cocaine addiction. You have had enough. Decided that the time has come for something to change. Welcome to next step in your journey.

 

Recovery By The Sea will give you some of the answers you look for. Here, we will consider these items:

 

  • Where did cocaine come from?
  • Short-term effects of cocaine use.
  • Long-term effects of cocaine use.
  • What is cocaine addiction treatment like?
  • More information about cocaine addiction treatment.

 

Where Did Cocaine Come From?

Ancient civilizations chewed the leaves of the coca plant (Erythroxylon coca). Beginning in the 1860s, chemists isolated cocaine from the coca plant. The following decades saw cocaine introduced into the medical industry. Slowly but surely, it gained acceptance among physicians. Sigmund Freud, an important figure in the development of psychology, battled cocaine addiction himself.

 

How Do People Use Cocaine?

As a powder, people typically inhale or snort cocaine. Or, they might rub it into their gums. Cocaine also comes in a crystal variety. We refer to this form as “crack.” Consumers of crack will melt it and then smoke it. Crack cocaine tends to have greater strength than powder cocaine. On the street, people may refer to cocaine as:

 

  • Snow
  • Flake
  • Icing
  • Pearl
  • Coke

What Does Cocaine Do To The Mind?

Researchers designate cocaine as a stimulant. This means that it causes all the body’s processes. Under the influence of cocaine, anything the brain does will speed up. For this reason, people tend to become more alert and on edge. They may experience sensory date more quickly or more intense than when sober. Cocaine works by manipulating the absorption of the neurotransmitter dopamine.

 

What Are The Short-Term Effects Of Cocaine Use?

Dopamine rewards us when we get something good. It makes us feel pleasure when we meet a goal. If you eat your favorite meal, your brain makes dopamine. When you speak to a loved one, your brain churns out dopamine. Cocaine causes dopamine to remain in the brain for too long. People on cocaine can become irritable and angry. They may exhibit fear, anxiety, or paranoia.

 

What Are The Long-Term Effects Of Cocaine Use?

If a person continues to consume cocaine, they risk cocaine use disorder (CUD). Cocaine use disorder represents a particular substance use disorder. If a person compulsively consumes cocaine, particularly when stressed, they may have cocaine use disorder. Currently, no medications exist to specifically treat CUD.

 

Long-term cocaine use can devastate the body. Cocaine wears away the skin of the nose and mouth. Consequently, consumers of cocaine can lose their senses of smell and taste. Further prolonged use can wear away these tissues. Nosebleeds afflict both short-term and long-term consumers. If left without medical attention, this can lead to “coke nose.” Smoking crack can destroy the lungs. Long-term consumers of cocaine also risk exposure to HIV and hepatitis.

 

Cocaine And The Cardiovascular System

Cocaine increases the heart rate. It also raises the temperature and blood pressure. This can lead to conditions like hyperthermia. Hyperthermia involves a remarkably high fever that becomes difficult to control. Conditions like these put cocaine consumers at risk for decreased blood and oxygen flow. As a result, long-term consumers expose themselves to heart attacks.

Cocaine Overdoses

Between 2013 and 2018, cocaine overdoses tripled. Cocaine overdoses also increased in 2020. Because of its effects on the cardiovascular system, cocaine brings the dilemma of overdose. An overdose occurs when a person consumes too much of a substance. Their bodies cannot adequately deal with the stress the substance causes. Overdoses can stop the breath, and cause loss of consciousness.

What Is Cocaine Addiction Treatment Like?

As mentioned earlier, no prescriptions exist to treat cocaine use disorder. However, research into effective cocaine treatment continues. Cocaine does not just influence dopamine. It also acts on other neurotransmitters like:

 

  • Norepinephrine: motivates the brain and body to act
  • Serotonin: influences how we feel, learn, and remember
  • Gamma-aminobutyric acid: slows our brains down
  • Glutamate: tells nerve cells to communicate with other nerve cells

 

Scientists have begun studying medications that act on these neurotransmitters. Some of them may help reduce relapse in those suffering from cocaine use disorder.

What If I Want More Information About Cocaine Addiction Treatment?

Recovery By The Sea offers evidence-based, research-backed treatment for cocaine addiction in FL. Remember that hope exists. If you struggle, you do now struggle alone. If you know someone who struggles, do not allow them to feel isolated.

 

We feel grateful you read this far. Do not let this be the end of your efforts. Contact Recovery By The Sea today for more information.

 

 

The Pros and Cons of PHP Treatment

The Advantages and Disadvantages of PHP

If you’re seeking a way to treat drug and alcohol addiction, you might be considering a Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP). Before you decide, it’s vital to know the pros and cons of PHP treatment. While these type of treatment programs can be helpful, PHP isn’t right for everyone. Those with very serious addictions might require a higher level of care in residential treatment. They might also need full detox before entering any kind of treatment. Those who have less serious addictions might not need the structure of PHP. They might be better off with something less intensive. By understanding PHP, you’ll be better equipped to choose the right program.

What is PHP?

Partial Hospitalization is a level of care for treating Substance Use Disorder (SUD). In most PHP settings the patients receive care during the day at a facility and then return to a sober living environment in the evening. PHP is even higher in intensity than Intensive Outpatient Programs (IOP), but not quite as high as the full Rehab or Residential levels where a patient remains at the treatment facility 24 hours a day.

While at the facility they receive various types of treatment to manage their SUD. One of the advantages of the PHP level of care is that it allows patients to get a full day of treatment including individual therapy and groups similar to what they’d have in a residential program. Many patients appreciate the ability to stay in a sober living environment overnight rather than sleeping at the facility itself.

Who is PHP For?

Typically, PHP is used by people who have either completed a residential treatment program or whom don’t require that level of 24 hour medical care. Residential programs are those wherein the patient stays at a facility overnight. This level of care is necessary for some patients, however it can be more costly per day. Many patients find they are able to get a longer overall length of stay in the PHP level of care. Another goal of PHP is to provide support for those who are still at a high risk for relapse. Programs of this type include a great deal of emphasis on relapse prevention. The aim is to help people transition into a sober life.

PHP is often used by those who do not require residential treatment, but want an advanced level of care to treat their addiction. Generally, these are people who don’t need 24/7 medical supervision in residential care, but still want a full day of treatment and the security and structure that sober living homes deliver.

Most people with SUD benefit greatly from following this basic recovery plan:

  1. Detox (and sometimes Residential)
  2. PHP
  3. IOP
  4. OP
  5. Aftercare

People who have been to treatment before and want to make sure they get a longer length of stay often find PHP helpful.

What is Involved in PHP

During partial hospitalization, a person will undergo a variety of treatments to help them. In quality partial hospitalization programs, evidence-based therapies are used. These therapies have shown to have the greatest success with treating SUD. The types of treatments most beneficial in a PHP are:

  • Specialized care for specific addictions, such as:
    • Alcohol dependency.
    • Opioid treatment programs.
    • Heroin specific treatment.
    • Methamphetamine addiction.
    • Crack and cocaine programs.
  • Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT).
  • Behavioral therapies such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), Contingency Management Interventions/Motivational Incentives, or others.
  • Group therapy supervised by a qualified therapist.
  • Family therapy.
  • Individual therapy.
  • Support groups.

This is by no means a total list. Every facility will provide different services. However, seeking PHP treatment that includes as many of the above as possible improve the chance of success.

The Pros and Cons of PHP Treatment

Here’s a quick breakdown of the benefits and drawbacks of PHP treatment:

PHP Pros

  • Provides a strong structure in order to help a person new to sobriety learn the tools necessary to live sober.
  • Can lead to a longer overall length of stay and the patient getting more help.
  • Reduces the sense of being “institutionalized” because the patient leaves the facility at the end of the day for a home-like environment.
  • Offers a full day of treatment very similar to residential treatment without the need to stay at the facility 24/7.
  • Less expensive than residential care and insurance may cover more time.

PHP Cons

Here are some drawbacks of PHP treatment:

  • May not be enough care for someone with a very serious addiction who also has medical or psychiatric problems that require more observation..
  • Requires more of a time commitment than Intensive Outpatient or Outpatient.
  • May interfere with work, school, family and other responsibilities.
  • Sometimes asks for a commitment from family members who may not be willing to sacrifice their time.

If You’re Ready to Begin PHP

Hopefully this has clarified how PHP treatment can be beneficial, as well as the potential downsides. If you feel that PHP is right for you, or are looking for alternatives, please contact us. Our staff is available to answer any questions you might have. They are also equipped to help begin the intake process if you’re looking to get into treatment as soon as possible. Our programs are built around our patients so that every person receives exactly the type of care they require. Reach out today and let us help you build a treatment program to fit your life. You can do it, and Recovery by the Sea is here to help.

We Accept Most Insurance Plans!