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One of the more common questions around recovery goes something like,”I’m addicted to heroin, not alcohol, so why can’t I have a drink? What’s this cross addiction I’ve heard about?”  That’s really not an unreasonable question. Why do men and women suffering from the disease of addiction aka substance use disorder who don’t seem to have problems with alcohol need to stay away from it anyway? Why can’t a prescription drug or heroin addict have a few drinks? Or can they?  What is cross addiction? There are really two reasons that medical professionals advice against drinking alcohol, even if this was not an individual’s drug of choice.

Two Reasons Drug Addicts Are Advised Against Drinking Alcohol (Cross Addiction)

* Alcohol reduces an individual’s inhibitions and increases the likelihood that he or she will make bad choices

* Cross Addiction – Just as they say in the rooms, “A drug is a drug is a drug.”  In other words, all drugs are mind altering substances and can either lead to addiction or be a trigger leading an individual addiction to another drug back to that drug or drugs.

Number one is pretty much self-explanatory and can be attested to by anyone who has regretted something he or she did while they were drinking. The parts of our brains that are responsible for taking in information and allowing us to make reasoned decisions are among the first functions to be depressed by alcohol, along with some motor skills.

People make poor decisions about driving, about kissing the boss’s wife at the Christmas party, about arguing with large men who carry guns and handcuffs, and all sorts of other things, including whether or not to drink more or use other drugs. “It seemed like a good idea at the time” can become a major problem when we’ve had a couple of drinks. Essentially, booze makes people succumb to making bad decisions while convincing them that we’re smarter.

The second reason, known as cross addiction, is a bit more complicated but makes perfect sense when an individual understands a few important concepts. For starters, cross-addiction refers to how individuals suffering from substance use disorder, once addicted, are far more likely to get hooked on other drugs or exhibit negative behaviors in addition to their drugs of choice.

Why do People drink or Use Drugs?

Individuals may say we like the taste of whiskey, but the fact is that they like it because we associate it with the way alcohol makes us feel. We use alcohol and other drugs because they change the way we feel. They relax us or they make us feel “good” in some way. Various drugs create different effects but ultimately, individuals select a drug that touches the pleasure center of the brain in such a way that makes them feel better than they were.  It’s not always limited to one drug either.  It’s sometimes and often a combination of drugs.

Sometimes individuals use because they’re happy and they want to feel happier.  However, most of them use drugs and mood-altering behavior because they distract them from reality. The trouble is, these drugs always wear off, and each individuals is always in a bad place, wishing they still felt good. So what happens next?  They use more of the same drug in order to re-create the same feeling.

The Reward Center of the Brain and How it’s Affected

Certain activities stimulate the production of chemicals in the brain that make us feel pleasure. Generally, these relate to things that are mostly beneficial: seeing a loved one or good friend, eating, exercising, playing games — especially if they win — fun, daydreaming, getting a good grade in school, a compliment, sex and so forth. They are quite literally a person’s body’s way of ensuring that they keep on doing things that are good for them. We refer to the portion of the brain that is stimulated as the reward center.

Alcohol and other drugs also stimulate the reward center, and they do it extremely well to begin with. When an individual starts drinking and using drugs, the feelings are phenomenal. They are much stronger than normal feelings, because the drug causes the production of extra quantities of feel-good neurotransmitters or, in some cases, stimulates the receptor sites in the reward center directly. Now that’s a reward, they think (sort of) — a powerful reward for using the drugs instead of our natural system of feeling good. Doing it again seems like a very good idea indeed.

But the goodness doesn’t last. As our reward centers become accustomed to the higher levels of stimulation, they become pretty much immune to the natural reward chemistry. People begin to need chemicals in order to get any sense of pleasure, and eventually just to feel normal. As people increase the levels of drugs, their brains attempt to compensate for the high levels of stimulation in two general ways: first by reducing the production of the natural feel-good chemicals, and also by building new receptor sites to deal with the excess chemicals floating around. It does this in an attempt to keep things to something like normal, but it’s doomed to lose the contest. Eventually, we have to have the drugs in order to function at all. We’re — guess what — addicted.

Now some of you are going to think, “Man, that was oversimplified that big time!”, and you’ll be right. Others are going to think, “What crap!  I drink…use drugs…whatever…because I want to!” Well, if you only have had a couple a week you may be right, but if you’re reading this because you think you might have a problem, you’re wrong and you’d best pay attention.  Do note however, that many individuals that don’t have the genetic predisposition to drug addiction may never become addicted and be able to drink without ever using any other drugs and drink only on occasion.  But why take the risk – especially by taking other drugs?

So what does all this have to do with a prescription addict having a drink? Everything. At the end of the day all drugs, including alcohol, act on the reward center. We get our good feelings from the reward center, and the reward center doesn’t know the difference between one drug and another. People can tell the difference in our conscious mind, because they feel the physical changes in other parts of their brains — stimulation, depression, whatever those effects may be — but the reason people enjoy them is because of the effects on their reward center, which operates mostly below the conscious level. Really now, who would want to get all jittery…or dumb and sleepy…or stupid and hungry if it didn’t feel good?

So, when an individual takes a drink, their reward center is elated and feels terrific.  If an individual is in early recovery — the first two years or so, their brain likely hasn’t even gotten back to normal yet. It has to deactivate all those extra receptor sites that it created to handle the extra stimulation, and it also has to have time to reactivate the systems that make the natural neurotransmitters. During that time we’re sitting ducks for relapse. Even after the repairs, the receptors are still there waiting to be reactivated by the presence of the drugs.  It’s all about repairs here, not new brains.
Any mood-altering drug or activity can affect the reward center, and so any of them can become addictions. Cross-addiction normally refers to substances, but it can also apply to behavior.

People often replace alcohol and other drugs with mood-altering activities like gambling, which is especially dangerous because of all the booze and drugs around (they know it makes people stupid). Other behaviors include relationships, porn, other sexual acting out, exercise, thrill-seeking and other activities that heavily stimulate the reward center. The fact is, people can get addicted to almost anything, if it causes pleasure or distraction from life issues.

That means that the name of the game in recovery is avoidance of all mood-altering substances.  There may be a limit to this…for instance, caffeine (in reasonable quantities) — and excess in other areas of our lives. Fun is fine. Pleasure is fine. But when the feelings become the reason for what we’re doing, to the exclusion of the activity itself and the people involved, we are headed for trouble.

Need Addiction Treatment and Help?

Our online drug addiction and recovery community helps men and women suffering from Substance Use Disorder, drug and heroin addiction who are sick and tired of being slaves and get the addiction help and treatment they want, need and deserve. For those ready for a chance, fill out our brief addiction treatment contact form. You can also call our drug rehab hotline at 215-857-5151.

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Written by William Charles, Owner and Publisher of Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide™, Heroin News, and the National Alliance of Addiction Treatment Centers (NAATC)

Visit our Free Heroin Addiction & Recovery Discussion Forum
Get help now by visiting our recommended addiction treatment centers.

Visit us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube

We are a community for recovering heroin addicts providing support and recommending the best treatments and clinics to people interested in conquering their addiction.

#addiction #heroin #addictiontreatmentcenter #crossaddiction #alcohol #heroinaddiction #drugaddiction #substanceusedisorder #usedrugs #drugrehab #alcoholaddiction

The post Can a Recovering Heroin Addict Drink Alcohol? (Cross Addiction) appeared first on Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide.

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We hear about teen drug addiction and abuse every day. It’s a major issue in our society and disrupts the lives of teens and their families on a daily basis. Most parents are aware of the dangers and prevalence of illicit drugs. However, many underestimate or are not fully aware of the risks lurking in their own homes.

When it comes to teens and prescription drug abuse, the numbers don’t lie. In fact, every day in the United States, 2500 youth ages 12 to 17 begin to abuse prescription pain medications, and 50% of teens believe that prescription drugs are much safer than illegal drugs.

The Gateway to Drug Abuse

Prescription medications like Oxycodone, Xanax, Hydrocodone, Percocet, etc. are often the first exposure teens have to drug use. Prescribed medications used by parents or other family members are easily accessible, and carry far less stigma than purchasing or trying illegal drugs such as marijuana, methamphetamine, heron, cocaine, etc. Teen prescription drug abuse, however, is a very serious problem.  In fact, 60% to 70% of teens who abuse drugs admit that home medicine cabinets are their source for getting high and that they are given these drugs by friends or relatives. Complicating matters is the fact that 23% of teenagers say their parents are less concerned about their abusing prescriptions than about “street drugs.”

Perhaps the biggest problem with prescription drug abuse is that it often provides a gateway to other dangerous drugs such as heroin. When family members start asking questions, or their usual pills become scarce it’s often too late.

What types of prescription drugs are most likely to be abused?

Children will use and abuse almost any drug in the medicine cabinet, but the drugs carrying the highest risk of abuse include pain relievers like Vicodin, Oxycodone, or Codeine. Also at risk are anxiety or sleep medications such as Valium or Xanax. Even medications for ADHD, such as Adderall and Ritalin, prescribed for themselves or others, can induce a high when overused or administered improperly.

All this adds up to an increasing trend that’s hard to swallow. The ages of kids beginning drug use keeps decreasing and the number of teens moving to harder drugs like heroin is increasing.

Check and Lock Your Medicine Cabinet

Checking and even locking your medicine cabinet when not in use is important.  Checking to make sure your pills aren’t being used is good, but locking them up so your children can’t get a hold of them is even better.  But even if you lock them up, check anyway.  Children are smart.  They may have found the key or another way to get in and access the medicine cabinet.  If they did, they could be using drugs while you think your medication is secure and your children are safe.

What Can Parents Do?

Probably the most important thing you can do as a parent is be aware. Educate yourself on prescription drugs and which ones may be of particular interest to teens. Keep your own medications in a safe place, and keep an eye on how many pills are left. Promptly dispose of any unused portion. And never neglect to talk to your teen about the dangers of these drugs. Make sure they understand the seriousness of prescription drug abuse, and make your own expectations clear.
If you are worried about your teen and prescription drugs, get the advice of a professional right away. The earlier you take action, the better chance your teen has of turning away from these and other addictive substances.

Need Addiction Treatment and Help?

Our online drug addiction and recovery community helps men and women suffering from Substance Use Disorder, drug and heroin addiction who are sick and tired of being slaves and get the addiction help and treatment they want, need and deserve. For those ready for a chance, fill out our brief addiction treatment contact form. You can also call our drug rehab hotline at 215-857-5151.

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Written by William Charles, Owner and Publisher of Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide™, Heroin News, and the National Alliance of Addiction Treatment Centers (NAATC)

Visit our Free Heroin Addiction & Recovery Discussion Forum
Get help now by visiting our recommended addiction treatment centers.

Visit us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube

Admin: help@kthen.org
Support: support@kthen.org
Information: info@kthen.org

Website: www.killtheheroinepidemicnationwide.org
Discussion Forum: www.heroinforum.org
Blog: www.heroinblog.org
Facebook: www.heroinbook.org

We are a community for recovering heroin addicts providing support and recommending the best treatments and clinics to people interested in conquering their addiction.

#addiction #heroin #addictiontreatmentcenters #meth #methamphetamine #cocaine #drugaddiction #drugabuse #medicinecabinet #prescriptiondrugs #drugrehabcenter #drugrehab

The post Is Your Medicine Cabinet Supplying Drugs To Your Kids appeared first on Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide.

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Countless people across America have been helped by Drug Court, but many more have fallen victim to the harsh sentences and nearly impossible rules set by the judges. Rather than take a “pro” or “con” position, perhaps it would be beneficial for the decision makers to host and have a discussion about how best to address drug use and how best to apply (and improve) the various drug court-based programs that go by the “drug court” moniker.

Disadvantages of Drug Court Related Programs

It’s critical to understand that drug courts, though they often connect people with addiction treatment services, are not a public health approach to drug use. They exist within a criminal justice system that demands punishment of individuals for a health issue.

Incarcerating people for a relapse, regrettably is a predictable and normal part of drug treatment and flies in the face of public health principles. Denying opioid dependent individuals access to what might be the most effective drug treatment for them such as narcotic replacement therapies including methadone and buprenorphine, and then incarcerating them for failing to do well is unconscionable. Most drug courts are guilty of both.

Potentially Beneficial Changes to Drug Court Related Programs

For individuals convicted of a drug law violation, other policy responses should be available—whether probation, drug treatment or both—because research shows they are at least equally effective and less costly and because public health principles demand a health response, not a criminal justice one, to drug use absent harm or serious risk of harm (such as driving under the influence) to others. It would also be constructive if drug courts focused their resources on cases involving offenses against persons or property that are linked to a drug problem and to strive to provide better addiction treatment options for participants.

The key message we hope policymakers will take away from the ongoing opioid and drug problem is that drug courts are often not the best way to provide addiction treatment, and they can, in fact, produce negative outcomes if not appropriately applied. U.S. drug policy must continue to move toward a public health approach to drug use. That’s how authorities can do the most good for men and women with the disease of addiction at the most affordable cost.

The fact that 1.4 million Americans are arrested every year for possession of drugs for personal use is a problem that will not be solved by drug courts. Top addiction treatment centers and drug rehab facilities like the Well Recovery Center attempt to remedy this problem by offering evidenced based, individualized addiction treatment to those who choose to get help.

Need Addiction Treatment and Help?

Our online drug addiction and recovery community helps men and women suffering from Substance Use Disorder, drug and heroin addiction who are sick and tired of being slaves and get the addiction help and treatment they want, need and deserve. For those ready for a chance, fill out our brief addiction treatment contact form. You can also call our drug rehab hotline at 215-857-5151.

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Your email:

Written by William Charles, Owner and Publisher of Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide™, Heroin News, and the National Alliance of Addiction Treatment Centers (NAATC)

Visit our Free Heroin Addiction & Recovery Discussion Forum
Get help now by visiting our recommended addiction treatment centers.

Visit us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube

Admin: help@kthen.org
Support: support@kthen.org
Information: info@kthen.org

Website: www.killtheheroinepidemicnationwide.org
Discussion Forum: www.heroinforum.org
Blog: www.heroinblog.org
Facebook: www.heroinbook.org

We are a community for recovering heroin addicts providing support and recommending the best treatments and clinics to people interested in conquering their addiction.

#addiction #heroin #addictiontreatmentcenters #diseaseofaddiction #drugaddiction #herionaddiction #drugrehab #substanceusedisorder #drugcourt #drugcourtresources

The post Drug Court Resources – They’re Just Not Good Enough! appeared first on Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide.

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Addiction has been declared a disease by the AMA (American Medical Association), SAMHSA (Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration) and many other reputable medical associations and organizations.  But did you know that drug addiction (also referred to more recently as substance use disorder or SUD) affects more than just the individual and is often considered a family disease?  There is a lot of information out there for men and women suffering from substance use disorder (SUD).  But what about families?  Thus, this article attempts to provide some insight for families who are struggling and provides 5 practical tips for helping their loved one who suffers from substance use disorder.

1. Advantages of Family Therapy for Substance Use Disorder (SUD)

When a family is dealing with the disease of addiction, family therapy can be beneficial during the addiction treatment and/or long-term recovery process. Generally, the addicted individual is considered the patient, but the entire family is drastically affected by the drug use. The goal of family therapy in this case is to help the addicted individual and provide information and support for the family.  Individual therapy provided to the patient also ends up helping every member of the family understand more clearly what their loved one is facing.

Family therapy gives siblings a voice and a means to find the help they need to get through a rather grown-up situation. Ultimately, if the addicted individual in the family can find recovery, the lives of the others in the household can become more stable and enjoyable.

2. Get Educated about Drug Addiction (Substance Use Disorder)

Drug abuse and addiction are complicated subjects. There are many adults in the world who, until they are faced with drug addiction in their own lives, have very little understanding of it. Many people think that abusing drugs is purely a choice – that if the person wants to stop using badly enough, they’ll just choose to stop. The truth is that taking drugs itself is a choice.  But after the first time, if a drug happens to touch the pleasure center of the brain a particular way due to the individual’s genetic predisposition to addiction, the individual may acquire the disease of addiction.  Choice to use drugs technically still exists.  But the cognitive compulsion that the brain creates is so powerful that it feels almost impossible for the individual to choose to stop using.  Those without this cognitive compulsion typically don’t understand and thus, assume an individual is simply continuing to make “bad choices” for no reason.

It is incredibly difficult for a person to stop using drugs if they suffer from addiction. Educating yourself about your sibling’s addiction will not make the problem go away. However, it might help you understand what is happening to your sibling in a way that can ease confusion and uncertainty.

3. Set Boundaries

The relationship between you and the individuals suffering from substance use disorder may be close. Perhaps you have an older sibling who seems just a bit larger than life, even though some of their bravadoes have been brought on by their drug use. Perhaps you are an older sibling and you want your younger brother or sister to experience the fun and freedom you had when you were their age. Either way, it isn’t unusual for siblings to trust each other with their most precious secrets. Perhaps you are a spouse who is watching your significant other change and slowly deplete your joint bank account.  Perhaps you are a worried mother or father who are seeing your child’s grades slipping.

Some secrets are dangerous, especially for addicted people. You can help your loved one get the addiction treatment they need for drug abuse or addiction by breaking their dangerous secrets. Yes, we know it sounds like a betrayal.  But telling others who may be able to help about your loved ones addiction may just save their life.

How can you tell the difference between a dangerous secret and one that isn’t such a big deal? Ask yourself if the secret can hurt anyone, including the individual who told you their secret and/or you suspect is using drugs.  As another example, imagine if your big sister has a new boyfriend who is violent.  You’d want to tell someone, even if she asks you not to because it may just save her life.  This is also true of drug use (whether they are technically addicted or not).

The important thing is to tell someone. Don’t worry about whether or not they will be mad or angry at you. Don’t worry if they say they won’t love you anymore, or if they’ve made you promise you won’t tell. Your sibling needs help to become healthy again.

Also, never lend money to someone suffering from the disease of addiction.  No matter what story they tell you, there is a very real possibility that they will use the money you’ve lent them to buy drugs or use it in some way to obtain drugs.
Rather than making it easy for them to obtain drugs, let them know that you will not loan them any money until they receive treatment and are living a sober lifestyle.

4. Understand Your Own Risks For Drug Addiction

Drug and alcohol addiction is also hereditary, although the scientists aren’t completely sure yet why this is true. The good news is that genetics are not the only factor in substance use disorder.  However, if your sibling or another blood related family member is struggling, there is a higher chance of you developing the disease of addiction.  Thus, to be safe, stay away from all mind altering substances.

5. Take Care Of Yourself

Dealing with a spouse, child, sibling, parent, friend, etc. who is addicted to drugs or alcohol and coming to terms with their disease is difficult and time-consuming. It might seem as though every moment is spent trying to help them or trying to figure out what to do. In order to help them, however, it is important that you remember to take care of yourself.

Moving Forward

Learning how to cope with the effects of your loved one’s drug addiction is an important tool that will help you and the rest of your family to get through a difficult time. You are important. You do matter. If you are concerned that a member of your family is abusing drugs, please remember to talk with a medical professional right away.  This can include your family doctor, a mental health professional, etc.

Need Addiction Treatment and Help?

Our online drug addiction and recovery community helps men and women suffering from Substance Use Disorder, drug and heroin addiction who are sick and tired of being slaves to get the addiction help and treatment they want, need and deserve. For those ready for a chance, fill out our brief addiction treatment contact form. You can also call our drug rehab hotline at 215-857-5151.

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Written by Joann Miller, Blogger for Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide™, Heroin News, and the National Alliance of Addiction Treatment Centers (NAATC)

Edited and Published By William Charles, Owner and Publisher

Visit our Free Heroin Addiction & Recovery Discussion Forum
Get help now by visiting our recommended addiction treatment centers.

Visit us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube

Admin: help@kthen.org
Support: support@kthen.org
Information: info@kthen.org

Website: www.killtheheroinepidemicnationwide.org
Discussion Forum: www.heroinforum.org
Blog: www.heroinblog.org
Facebook: www.heroinbook.org

We are a community for recovering heroin addicts providing support and recommending the best treatments and clinics to people interested in conquering their addiction.

#drugaddiction #substanceusedisorder #siblings #drugrehab #familytherapy #education #education #SAMHSA #AMA #SUD

The post 5 Tips For Dealing With A Loved One With Substance Use Disorder (SUD) appeared first on Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide.

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Safe Injection Sites – If you know what they are then you probably have a strong opinion about them one way or another.  Like this community, you may have had one strong opinion and then after doing more research, changed your mind for certain reasons. First of all, what are safe injection sites?  Many think it means a place on the body where you can safely stick a needle so that you don’t cause harm to yourself or overdose on heroin.  But this simply isn’t the case.  So what is it?  Why would the authorities and medical professionals even consider providing or funding it?  Are you for or against safe injection sites?

What are Safe Injection Sites?

Safe Injection Sites are physical places provided by authorities or medical professionals for heroin users to go to so they can use heroin without being arrested and experience other “benefits”.  At first, the Kill The Heroin Epidemic Nationwide community thought this was a terrible idea.  Frankly, it sounded like enabling an addict and making it convenient and easy to use without any repercussion, penalties or consequences.  And while this is somewhat true, there are three distinct benefits to Safe Injection Sites that we want to share and discuss in this article.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Safe Injection Sites

Many believe that the only way a man or woman suffering from the disease of addiction will eventually seek help and treatment is if they experience consequences.  By opening a safe injection site, the heroin user is protected from being arrested.  This eliminates one consequence but it doesn’t eliminate others.  Men and women who suffer from Substance Use Disorder will still have to buy their own heroin, take the risk of dying, risk losing their job(s), experience monetary loss, experience relationship problems, etc.  However, whether or not protection from the law at safe injection sites can be debated as an advantage or a disadvantage.  Many tout sentences like”Jail is not treatment” and “Addicts should not be arrested because they have a disease.”  If you believe this, than you likely see protection from being arrested as an advantage.  However others believe that addicts should pay the price for using drugs because they are doing something illegal and harmful.  Unfortunately, many still believe that those suffering from substance use disorder don’t deserve help and should just be punished.  However, others believe they should be helped but that jail time will help them.

The above aside, there are 3 distinct advantages to safe injection sites which is why Kill The Heroin Epidemic Nationwide as a community is in favor of Safe Injection Sites.  For starters, Safe Injection Sites fall into the category of “Harm Reduction”, similar to Methadone and Suboxone.  This is because of the 3 benefits I will describe below.

1. Minimizing Heroin Overdose Related Death – Because there will be trained individuals and possibly even medical professionals on site, in the event an overdose occurs, they can and will apply Narcan (naloxone) which is very likely to prevent the heroin user from dying.

2. Encouraging Addiction Treatment and Drug Rehab – We know that not everyone is a candidate for private drug rehab facilities if they don’t have a plethora of cash or the right PPO insurance policy.  However, there is other kinds of help available.  Trained medical professionals, recovery advocates and counselors on site can and will encourage those who are at the safe injection sites using to get treatment and provide them with information on rehab and other forms of less expensive treatment

3. Minimizing/Eliminating Diseases – At safe injection sites, new (clean) needles (often called “works” in the streets) will be applied so those who inject heroin aren’t sharing or using dirty needles.  Sharing or using dirty needles is the only way to obtain Hepatitis C and other heroin/drug transmitted diseases.  Thus, by going to safe injection sites, heroin users will be able to use clean needles, minimizing disease and death.

Funding for Safe Injection Sites

Recently, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania legalized safe injection sites and decided to give it a try.  There’s been a debate as to whether or not funding is being improperly provided and that more funding should be given to creating drug treatment centers for those without insurance or cash.  After all, many want and need help but are being turned away from drug rehabs because they don’t have the right PPO insurance policies.  Thus, instead of funding safe injection sites which arguably does or does not help get more people into treatment, some argue that funding should be used for the ones ready to get addiction help and treatment today.  What do you think?

Need Addiction Treatment and Help?

Our online drug addiction and recovery community helps men and women suffering from Substance Use Disorder, drug and heroin addiction who are sick and tired of being slaves and get the addiction help and treatment they want, need and deserve. For those ready for a chance, fill out our brief addiction treatment contact form. You can also call our drug rehab hotline at 215-857-5151.

Leave Blank:Do Not Change:

Your email:

Written by William Charles, Owner and Publisher of Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide™, Heroin News, and the National Alliance of Addiction Treatment Centers (NAATC)

Visit our Free Heroin Addiction & Recovery Discussion Forum
Get help now by visiting our recommended addiction treatment centers.

Visit us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube

Admin: help@kthen.org
Support: support@kthen.org
Information: info@kthen.org

Website: www.killtheheroinepidemicnationwide.org
Discussion Forum: www.heroinforum.org
Blog: www.heroinblog.org
Facebook: www.heroinbook.org

We are a community for recovering heroin addicts providing support and recommending the best treatments and clinics to people interested in conquering their addiction.

#addiction #heroin #addictiontreatmentcenters #diseaseofaddiction #drugaddiction #herionaddiction #drugrehab #substanceusedisorder #heroinoverdose #safeinjectionsites #suboxone #methadone #substanceusedisorder #PPO

The post Safe Injection Sites for Heroin Use: For or Against? appeared first on Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide.

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Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide by William - Publisher Of This Communi.. - 1M ago

Heroin withdrawal often involves 3 stages of symptoms that unfold over a rough time-frame that spans hours to days since the last instance of drug use. The first stage of symptoms typically appears up to 6-12 hours after the last heroin dose. Second stage symptoms can appear 8-24 hours after the last dose, and third stage symptoms may appear up to 3 days after the last dose. Symptoms are usually at their worst 24-48 hours after first appearing but may continue for several days.  Below, we describe typical heroin withdrawal symptoms that a heroin addict experiences if they do not use methadone or Suboxone to help minimize the symptoms.

Although each individual may experience a unique set of symptoms while going through heroin withdrawal, a few characteristic physiological and psychological occurrences are seen. Below are some of the most commonly experienced symptoms.

Stage 1 – Heroin Withdrawal

• Cravings. Heroin-dependent individuals have acclimated to a persistent presence of drug in their system. As such, those in the midst of an acute withdrawal may experience intense cravings for the drug their body has grown so used to.

• Moodiness. “Moodiness” can include feelings of anxiety, fear of heroin withdrawal, irritability, depression and suicidal thoughts.

Stage 2 – Heroin Withdrawal

• Stomach cramps.

• Upper body secretions. You may experience runny nose, sweating and non-emotional tears as part of your stage 2 withdrawal symptoms.

• Restlessness. Your body’s inability to remain calmly still at this stage may also lead to difficulty sleeping through the night (“insomnia”) and yawning. You may be kept awake by symptoms of anxiety, nightmares, body aches, difficulty getting comfortable or restless legs.

Stage 3 – Heroin Withdrawal

• Diarrhea.

• Fever / chills. You may feel feverish and experience chills and/or goose bumps when going through heroin withdrawal. In conjunction with muscle and joint aches and pains, which are also common symptoms of heroin withdrawal, this can feel much like the you are suffering from the flu.

• Muscle spasms. Part of stage 3 withdrawal symptoms commonly includes muscle spasms, joint pains or tremors.

• Nausea / vomiting.

• Cardiovascular problems. Heroin withdrawal at this stage may also cause your heart rate and blood pressure to increase.

The Moodiness of Withdrawal

Anxiety

Symptoms of anxiety during heroin withdrawal are also prevalent. These symptoms are likely associated with feelings of withdrawal stress.

Individuals may feel anxiety about entering new territory (i.e., living without heroin ) he and may feel increasingly anxious or nervous thinking about abstinence.

Irritability

It is not surprising that an individual would experience increased feelings of irritability owing to the stress of enduring heroin withdrawal.

Even a friendly remark or gesture may “set off” the individual, leading them to frequently be rude, cold, or short with friends and family.

Depression:

Depression happens because the brain is unable to produce the chemicals needed to make the individual feel ok.
Some of these specific symptoms can include: negative or low mood, lack of motivation, social isolation and withdraw, anxiety, helplessness, and hopelessness.

Suicidal thoughts

In the most extreme instances of heroin withdrawal, the individual may suffer so much that they begin to feel helpless, hopeless, or lost.

If these symptoms of depression are not closely monitored, they have the potential to escalate to thoughts of suicide.

What Happens in the Body During Heroin Withdrawal?

When developing a physical dependence on heroin, the body begins to produce additional opioid receptors in response to the flood of additional opioids in the system from heroin.

Additionally, a body that has been influenced chemically for so long – bolstered by a consistent presence of the drug – will function sub-optimally when this support is withdrawn. The normal endocrine environment will potentially be inadequate for subjectively normal experiences such as pleasure and pain control.

As a result, a withdrawing individual may temporarily develop new disturbances in mood and hypersensitivity to pain.

Severity and onset of opioid withdrawal symptoms, their time of onset and their duration will differ for each individual. The withdrawal syndrome experienced will also be dependent on whether it is accomplished by oneself or with professional help that may include the use of medications. If you are being evaluated for heroin withdrawal symptoms, you can expect to undergo a complete physical examination.The physician may also request that you submit a urine or blood test to confirm heroin use.

Part of the beauty of seeking out professional help or a heroin rehabilitation for help with detox and withdrawal is that you will have a much stronger, immediately accessible support system available – with experienced counselors, supportive interventions and medical or pharmaceutical resources, if required.

Can You Die from Heroin Withdrawal?

In emergency cases of heroin overdose or in settings of ultra rapid opioid detox where antagonistic medications (such as naloxone or naltrexone) are used to reverse the effects of heroin – some individuals’ bodies may not be able to handle the sudden chemical and blood flow changes that occur.

While these drugs tend to generally have a low incidence of harmful effects, careful use of these drugs and cardio-respiratory monitoring are warranted. Catecholamines in the body can be released from high or rapid doses of naloxone – resulting in cardiac arrhythmia and pulmonary edema.

It should be noted, however, that the medications more typically used used in non-emergency settings (such as methadone or buprenorphine) do not carry this same risk. These medications are more commonly opioid “agonists” that moderately mimic – and not reverse – the effects of heroin.

How to Get Rid of Heroin Withdrawal Symptoms

Withdrawal symptoms will be at their worst if you decide to go through withdrawal by yourself, naturally or unassisted. However, if you seek out medical help or a heroin rehab center, these uncomfortable symptoms can be greatly lessened.

Need Addiction Treatment and Help?

Our online drug addiction and recovery community helps men and women suffering from Substance Use Disorder, drug and heroin addiction who are sick and tired of being slaves to get the addiction help and treatment they want, need and deserve. For those ready for a chance, fill out our brief addiction treatment contact form. You can also call our drug rehab hotline at 215-857-5151.

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Written by Joann Miller, Blogger for Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide™, Heroin News, and the National Alliance of Addiction Treatment Centers (NAATC)

Edited and Published By William Charles, Owner and Publisher

Visit our Free Heroin Addiction & Recovery Discussion Forum
Get help now by visiting our recommended addiction treatment centers.

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We are a community for recovering heroin addicts providing support and recommending the best treatments and clinics to people interested in conquering their addiction.

#heroinwithdrawal #heroinwithdrawalsymptoms #suboxone #methadone #heroinaddiction #drugaddiction #diseaseofaddiction #drugrehab #drugrehabcenter #addictiontreatment

The post 10 Most Common Heroin Withdrawal Symptoms appeared first on Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide.

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Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide by William - Publisher Of This Communi.. - 1M ago

Although snorting heroin may be perceived as less dangerous than injection (intravenous or IV) use of this drug, the health risks and potential for addiction and heroin overdose are significant.  Heroin is a powerfully addictive and illicit drug in the opioid family. It is a chemical modification of morphine, which derives from the opium poppy plant, and is converted back to morphine once it’s in the brain, where it binds to opioid receptors to cause its effects.

How People Use Heroin

People commonly inject, snort, or smoke heroin. Each of these methods induces an intense high shortly after administration. Heroin causes users to experience euphoria, drowsiness, and altered pain perception.  However, it also can also cause profound respiratory depression, coma, and death.

Snorting Heroin – Why It Is Dangerous

Snorting heroin involves either inhaling powdered heroin or heroin dissolved in small amounts of liquid through the nose. The drug then enters the bloodstream through the nasal tissues. It’s usually snorted by using a straw or rolled up paper. Those who snort heroin might not feel the full initial euphoric “rush” that intravenous users do, but the ensuing effects are largely indistinguishable.

It typically takes about 10 to 15 minutes to feel the effects of heroin when snorted, as opposed to injecting, which can produce effects as quickly as seconds after administration. People who have allergies or congested sinuses might need more time before they feel the effects.

Those who snort also carry the risk of asthma attacks, nosebleeds, breathing problems, and damage and irritation to the nasal passages, sinuses, and cartilage of the nose. People who share straws also run the risk of contracting various viral and bacterial infections from other users.

Research suggests that snorting heroin has become more popular as an alternative to IV use. This shift might be due to the increase in purity of heroin in certain areas (while other areas heroin is mixed with other more dangerous chemicals): Snorting the opioid is typically less efficient than injecting, but the higher purity allows a user to get high more easily with this mode of administration. This change could possibly be the reason more teenagers and young adults initiate heroin use than in the past.

Heroin use affects each person differently. A person’s reaction to snorting heroin depends on their overall physical health, the purity of the drug, and how much and how frequently they use the drug.

Need Addiction Treatment and Help?

Our online drug addiction and recovery community helps men and women suffering from Substance Use Disorder, drug and heroin addiction who are sick and tired of being slaves and get the addiction help and treatment they want, need and deserve. For those ready for a chance, fill out our brief addiction treatment contact form. You can also call our drug rehab hotline at 215-857-5151.

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Written by Joann Miller, Blogger for Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide™, Heroin News, and the National Alliance of Addiction Treatment Centers (NAATC)

Edited and Published By William Charles, Owner and Publisher

Visit our Free Heroin Addiction & Recovery Discussion Forum
Get help now by visiting our recommended addiction treatment centers.

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Admin: help@kthen.org
Support: support@kthen.org
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We are a community for recovering heroin addicts providing support and recommending the best treatments and clinics to people interested in conquering their addiction.

#addiction #herion #snortingheroin #injectingheroin #addictionhelp #herionaddiction #drugaddiction #substanceusedisorder #drugrehab #heroinoverdose

The post Is Snorting Heroin Safer Than Injecting It? appeared first on Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide.

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It is no surprise to law enforcement and the general public that there is a strong connection between drug abuse and sex workers (prostitution). In fact, the two crimes of illicit drug use and prostitution are often closely interrelated. Actual hard data is inherently difficult to come by on this topic but anecdotal observations bear out the relationship between the two.
Some prostitutes use drugs to numb themselves so they can continue working. This aspect of drug abuse most likely feels useful for their occupation. It eliminates inhibitions and tends to desensitize sex workers to its traumatic effects.

The drugs help them to take their minds off of what they are doing, making them more detached from the situation. The dangers of the job are also sources of great anxiety that the sex worker can suppress by using drugs and alcohol. Others have a real drug addiction and ply their trade to score drug money to feed their ongoing habit.

Still others, often those who are victims of illegal sex trafficking, are force fed drugs to eliminate their resistance to the grim work of being a sex worker.

Whether the prostitute works for a high end call girl ring or at truck stops scoring some quick tricks, the pain associated with the business plus the illegal nature of it makes it a profession steeped in illegal and dangerous drug use.

The addictions that are rooted in the sex worker trade only exacerbate a problem that is already at serious levels in the US.

Street prostitution and street drug markets are closely linked. They reinforce and support one another. The drugs used by sex workers include mainly methamphetamine, cocaine or crack and heroin.

Often, serious drug users get into prostitution at some point on their addiction road to help finance the habit. Of course, prostitutes develop bad habits as part of the street prostitution lifestyle. They are a huge customer base for street – level drug dealers.

In fact, crack cocaine markets usually drive down the price of street prostitution. That’s because a prostitute, desperate for the drug, will sell sex cheaply. This can cause other prostitutes to resent them for driving down prices or having sex without condoms. Their pimps may also punish them for holding back their earnings to buy drugs.

In addition, sex workers who are hooked on drugs become more vulnerable to violence being committed against them as well as themselves committing robberies or becoming violent. Where drugs and street prostitution are linked, it is less predictable and much more dangerous.

If you or someone you love is suffering from addiction or alcoholism and is a sex worker, you should know that the risks of continuing this lifestyle are significant and include imprisonment or death.

Take action now before it’s too late.

Need Addiction Treatment and Help?

Our online community helps men and women suffering from Substance Use Disorder, drug and heroin addiction who are sick and tired of being slaves and get the addiction help and treatment they want, need and deserve. For those ready for a chance, fill out our brief addiction treatment contact form. You can also call our drug rehab hotline at 215-857-5151.

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Written by Joann Miller, Blogger for Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide™, Heroin News, and the National Alliance of Addiction Treatment Centers (NAATC)

Edited and Published By William Charles, Owner and Publisher

Visit our Free Heroin Addiction & Recovery Discussion Forum
Get help now by visiting our recommended addiction treatment centers.

Visit us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube

Admin: help@kthen.org
Support: support@kthen.org
Information: info@kthen.org

Website: www.killtheheroinepidemicnationwide.org
Discussion Forum: www.heroinforum.org
Blog: www.heroinblog.org
Facebook: www.heroinbook.org

We are a community for recovering heroin addicts providing support and recommending the best treatments and clinics to people interested in conquering their addiction.

#addiction #prostitution #sexwork #sexworker #drugaddiction #addiction #cocaine #crack #crackcocaine #addictionhelp #addictiontreatment #addictiontreatmentcenter #drugrehab

The post Prostitution: The Link Between Drug Addiction & Sex Work appeared first on Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide.

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Did you know that two million Americans are dependent on or abusing prescription drugs and painkillers? That being said, we need to redefine what an addict looks like today. It could be that businesswoman who appears confident and ambitious or that man who owns the local real estate agency. Did you know that according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that painkiller overdoses now account for more than twice the deaths as cocaine and five times as many as heroin overdoses? A 2009 National Survey of Drug Use and Health by Columbia University found that the proportions of Americans addicted to opioids – oxycontin, vicodin, and Demerol tripled from 1991 to 2001.  This article is about how to help a family member or loved one if they are addicted to prescription drugs.

Even as the faces of addiction change, so must our understanding of how best to help treat it. Drugs that originate in a doctor’s office or pharmacy makes them no less lethal and when a drug addict is your spouse, determining the course of action can take an added urgency.

Each case of addiction will have its own complications and nuances, but if you discovered that your spouse is struggling with a prescription drug addiction, you can start helping them by doing the following:

How to Help a Family Member or Spouse with an Addiction to Prescription Drugs

1)  Immediately Intervene: Do not assume that you need to let the person hit rock bottom and experience enough consequences to change. Did you also know that 60% have one or more co-occurring mental health issues? The addiction can be what is mostly seen, but it is what is hidden that needs to be addressed immediately too.

2) Play An Active Role: Family members play a very powerful role in persuading substance abusers to submit to addiction treatment. After all, the whole family suffers from the addiction and also can benefit from the treatment of it. Most family members are in positions to help the drug addict seek treatment.  However, by doing nothing, they enable the continuation of the addiction.

3) Don’t Lose Yourself: Prescription drug addiction symptoms and problems can be so dramatic and visible while pulling other family members to ignore their own needs. It is crucial that each family member not get lost in an attempt to help. They need to focus on their own self-care and set their healthy boundaries.

It’s important to get real professional assistance and to educate the family as much as possible. The reality is if the person gets addiction treatment and they really work the program, they can get better.

There are also professional support groups that can play a critical role in helping family members survive a love one’s addiction. See below:

Al-Anon (al-anon.org): A peer support group with meetings in more than 130 countries to help families primarily affected by alcohol addiction.

Nar-Anon (nar-anon.org): An offshoot of Al-Anon designed to help relatives and friends of addicts.

Families Anonymous (familiesanonymous.org): A 12-step fellowship program of families of addicts.

Children of Addicts (mdjunction.com/children-of-addicts): An online support group designed to help children discuss and deal with the challenges of an addicted parent.

Need Addiction Treatment and Help?

Our online community helps men and women suffering from Substance Use Disorder, drug and heroin addiction who are sick and tired of being slaves and get the addiction help and treatment they want, need and deserve. For those ready for a chance, fill out our brief addiction treatment contact form. You can also call our drug rehab hotline at 215-857-5151.

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Your email:

Written by Joann Miller, Blogger for Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide™, Heroin News, and the National Alliance of Addiction Treatment Centers (NAATC)

Edited and Published By William Charles, Owner and Publisher

Visit our Free Heroin Addiction & Recovery Discussion Forum
Get help now by visiting our recommended addiction treatment centers.

Visit us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube

Admin: help@kthen.org
Support: support@kthen.org
Information: info@kthen.org

Website: www.killtheheroinepidemicnationwide.org
Discussion Forum: www.heroinforum.org
Blog: www.heroinblog.org
Facebook: www.heroinbook.org

We are a community for recovering heroin addicts providing support and recommending the best treatments and clinics to people interested in conquering their addiction.

#addiction #prescriptiondrugs #drugaddiction #addictionhep #addictiontreatmenthelp #al-anon #nar-anon #drugabuse #addictiontreatmentcenter #drugrehab

The post When a family member is addicted to prescription drugs appeared first on Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide.

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Supporting an addict who’s relapsed can help save their life. Seeing a loved one return to drugs or alcohol after addiction treatment can be devastating to family and friends. It may make you feel as though everything you and the addict have done to address the addiction has been in vain. Naturally, you want to help the family member or friend with the dug addiction so they can regain their health and get back to life as it once was. You may feel like you would do anything — including sacrificing your own needs and wants to help your loved one. But experts say that’s not what’s best for those suffering from the disease of addiction. Below are some important dos and don’ts to keep in mind when a loved one relapses on heroin or other drugs.

6 Things to Do When a Loved One Drug Relapses

1. Do remember that this is the individuals suffering from the disease of addiction’s battle. Thinking this way will help you cope with the situation: To truly get well, they need to do it on their own.

2. Do stand firm. Hold addicts accountable for their recovery from the drug relapse, just as it was important to hold them accountable for their addiction in the first place.

3. Do encourage your loved one. Just redirect them to their original addiction treatment plan. This may include suggesting they talk to their counselor or sponsor, or that they go to an addiction support group meeting.

4. Do take care of yourself. That’s the best way to help an addict who has relapsed. Eat well, get enough sleep, be sure to exercise, and keep doing the things you like, such as hobbies, sports, or crafts — whatever it is that you enjoy.

5. Do set an example for healthy living. If you’re on your way to the gym, you can invite your loved one to join you. Letting them know that you would enjoy their company is very supportive. Just remember that you can’t force them to accept the invitation

6. Do be supportive. If the addiction is to alcohol, one supportive measure is to avoid having any alcohol in the house. Many times a caregiver doesn’t understand why they can’t have a drink at home. Ask them why they would want to have alcohol in the house when it’s the very substance that’s killing their loved one.

You don’t have to stand idly by: You can offer support in your own ways without letting yourself be pulled down by the situation.

7. Do be optimistic. Even though a relapse is not the outcome you were hoping for, a return to addiction treatment can be very helpful for your loved one who could, eventually, live a drug-free life. It’s important to have a positive outlook, both for your sake and theirs.

Need Addiction Treatment and Help?

Our online community helps men and women suffering from Substance Use Disorder, drug and heroin addiction who are sick and tired of being slaves and get the addiction help and treatment they want, need and deserve. For those ready for a chance, fill out our brief addiction treatment contact form. You can also call our drug rehab hotline at 215-857-5151.

Leave Blank:Do Not Change:

Your email:

Written by Joann Miller, Blogger for Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide™, Heroin News, and the National Alliance of Addiction Treatment Centers (NAATC)

Edited by William Charles, Owner and Publisher

Visit our Free Heroin Addiction & Recovery Discussion Forum
Get help now by visiting our recommended addiction treatment centers.

Visit us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube

Admin: help@kthen.org
Support: support@kthen.org
Information: info@kthen.org

Website: www.killtheheroinepidemicnationwide.org
Discussion Forum: www.heroinforum.org
Blog: www.heroinblog.org
Facebook: www.heroinbook.org

We are a community for recovering heroin addicts providing support and recommending the best treatments and clinics to people interested in conquering their addiction.

#addiction #relapse #drugrelapse #addictiontreatment #addictiontreatmentcenter #drugrehab #addictionhelp #diseaseofaddiction

The post Things to Do When a Loved one Relapses on Drugs appeared first on Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide.

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