Can Trauma Lead to Substance Abuse?

Traumatic events can leave you feeling scared and upset. Life is not the same afterward, and you may be left feeling edgy and may have flashbacks where you re-live the trauma. This is called post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD. PTSD is a mental health condition that results from someone experiencing trauma that causes long-lasting, often debilitating effects.1

If you or a loved one suffers from the lingering effects of trauma, you are not alone. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America reports that 7.7 million people ages 18 and older currently have PTSD. The National Center for PTSD published a study that showed 7 or 8 out of every 100 people will experience PTSD at some point in their lives.2

Trauma and Addiction

When you are experiencing symptoms of PTSD, problems may arise with family and friends. PTSD can cause problems with trust and communication. It may affect how you act with others, as PTSD causes many to view the world and other people as dangerous and threatening. In turn, the way your loved ones respond to you will be affected. A cycle develops that can harm your closest relationships.

Drug and alcohol abuse is another issue that can start and continue in a harmful cycle. When PTSD is left untreated, some people may turn to substance abuse as a coping mechanism to numb negative and unwanted memories and feelings. Substance abuse can lead to dependency, and it’s then a short step from drinking or taking drugs into a full-blown addiction.

When you put PTSD and substance abuse together, there is great potential for serious physical and mental health consequences. It’s very difficult to break out of these cycles alone without professional therapy.

Dual Diagnosis: PTSD and Addiction

Many people begin recovery from PTSD by receiving counseling to deal with frightening memories or flashbacks. People who have trauma-related disorders alongside addictions are said to have dual diagnosis. A dual diagnosis treatment center specializes in helping trauma survivors recover from substance abuse at the same time as they receive treatment for PTSD. Because both conditions are connected, they must be treated jointly in order for therapy to be effective.

Dual Diagnosis Treatment

If you find yourself ill-equipped to deal with traumatic events and also have an addiction, dual diagnosis treatment will aid your recovery. A rehab center with trauma-based programs will work with you to understand and cope with the lasting effects of traumatic events, while also working with you to recover from substance abuse. All these issues need to be addressed simultaneously to effectively achieve and maintain sobriety.

Programs that address traumatic events while exploring underlying issues can be very effective at getting problematic symptoms under control. A combination of 12-step meetings, eye movement desensitization and reprocessing and prescription medications can help you find the road to sobriety and improved mental health.

A successful recovery can be achieved when the impact of trauma in daily life is addressed, along with repairing the relationships you have with the world and the people in it. A more joyful and sober life is the result.

References: (1) Understanding the Facts: Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (2) How Common is PTSD?

The Effects of Workplace Substance Abuse

As a result of media coverage and personal experiences, many people understand that abuse of alcohol and illicit drugs are persistent issues in society. What some may not fully understand is how this abuse affects the workplace and how the workplace may affect substance abuse.

According to a 2012 study by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, approximately 68 percent of all illicit drug users are employed full or part time. The same applies for binge and heavy alcohol drinkers.1 Many job duties involve being alert and accurate, having quick reflexes and being efficient in completing tasks. When a person is impaired, it can lead to accidents, inefficiency and reduced productivity. Absenteeism due to recovering from the effects of substance abuse and related illnesses can also be costly to businesses. In 2002, a study conducted in Canada found that substance abuse cost their economy more than $39.8 billion.2

Employers and Substance Abuse

Substance abuse effects that affect employers include:3

  • Employees being late or sleeping on the job
  • Theft
  • Poor decision making, problems performing duties
  • Decreased efficiency
  • Low morale of coworkers
  • High rate of turnover and increased training costs for new employees
  • Costs of disciplinary procedures and drug testing programs

Employees and Substance Abuse

Job-related stress may encourage some to turn to substances to cope. These include:

  • High stress
  • Low job satisfaction
  • Long hours, irregular shifts
  • Fatigue, isolation
  • Repetitive tasks
  • Periods of inactivity and boredom
  • Remote, irregular or abusive supervision

Since 68 percent of alcohol abusers and about the same percentage of drug users are employed, the workplace is a valuable opportunity to reach out with resources to encourage people to get into recovery. Employers and employees can meet and agree on guidelines and programs that would benefit both sides.

Workplace Programs

One tool that can have a significant impact on abuse in the workplace is an employee assistance program (EAP). These types of programs offer counseling and assistance in connecting employees who have abuse issues with treatment programs. Also, encouraging people in recovery to work helps them maintain their sober lives. It also helps improve job performance, decreases tardiness and improves efficiency and morale.

For these programs to be effective, drug testing, trained staff and workplace monitoring should be in place to implement this type of treatment. While it may add to overhead for the business, the benefits of increased productivity, less absenteeism, improved decision-making and lower turnover may offset the cost of an EAP.

Changing Society Through the Workplace

An important first step in addressing the problem of substance abuse in the workplace is the awareness that it is a common problem not just shared by families and friends, but one that also extends into employers’ and employees’ relationships.

Once acknowledged, the resources and contacts being made between people who have the means and motivation to offer recovery aid—employers—to those who need treatment—employees—can have a profound positive impact on society at large. Both employers and employees will benefit from these changes, improving lives as well as profits.

References: 1) (1) Drug Testing 2) (2) Substance Abuse in the Workplace 3) (3) Inoculating Your Business Against Drug/Alcohol with a Substance Abuse Prevention Program

Synthetic Marijuana Causes 16 Overdoses in Houston on Thursday.

The Houston Fire Department responded to calls about people appearing to have “altered states of mind” in the notorious “Kush Corner” on Thursday around 2:30. The area of Hermann Park is well known for its synthetic marijuana use and packets of the fake pot were found throughout the park. When the emergency responders first showed up they found dozens of people who needed hospitalization. Many appeared to have overdosed on synthetic marijuana and paramedics had taken 16 people away in ambulances before the day was over. Houston, TX has been plagued with bizarre incidents involving synthetic marijuana use. One incident where two men attacked and shot at their neighbors when they found a piece of cold chicken on the lawn during a BBQ. Another incident was deadly when a man beat, stabbed, and choked his girlfriend to death during an argument after allegedly smoking a bad batch of synthetic marijuana. The city of Houston has multiple lawsuits against local shops selling the drug. Many fear that this is just the beginning of the synthetic marijuana overdoses they could see this summer.


What is Synthetic Marijuana?

Synthetic Marijuana or Synthetic cannabinoids refers to a man-made mind-altering chemicals that are sprayed on shredded plant material so they can be smoked. The chemicals are called cannabinoids because they are related to the chemicals found in the marijuana plant. Many users of the synthetic drug believe it is a safe alternative to real marijuana. In fact, the chemically sprayed shredded planet material effect on the brain can be more powerful than marijuana, their actual effects can be unpredictable, and even cause hallucinations, panic, and violent outburst of rage. Many of the packets containing the drug are labeled “Not for Human Consumption”, and claim to have “natural” material. However, the only parts of these products that are natural are the dried planet materials. The chemicals that are sprayed onto the drug are made in laboratories.  Easy access and the belief that synthetic cannabinoid products are “natural” and therefore harmless have likely contributed to their use among young people. Another reason for their use is that standard drug tests cannot easily detect many of the chemicals used in these products. 

Where is synthetic marijuana sold?

For many years’ synthetic pot could easily be purchased in drug paraphernalia store, gas stations, and through the internet. Authorities deemed the chemicals to have no medical benefit and had a high potential for abuse so they banned the sale and possession of these chemicals. Many were packaged with catchy names like Black Mamba and Kush. Two of the most notorious products were K2 and Spice. However, manufacturers try to sidestep these laws by changing the chemical formulas in their mixtures. Creating new, even more powerful synthetic drugs.

Effects synthetic marijuana has on the brain.

The chemicals in the synthetic pot act on the same brain cell receptors as THC, the active ingredient in marijuana. Some researches believe that the chemicals bind more strongly than marijuana does, which produces a stronger effect. Because the chemical composition of many synthetic cannabinoid products is unknown and may change from batch to batch, these products are likely to contain substances that cause dramatically different effects than the user might expect.Some users of the synthetic drug have reported elevated moods, relaxation, altered perceptions, symptoms of psychosis, extreme anxiety, confusion, paranoia, and even hallucinations. Other health effects reported are rapid heart rate, vomiting, violent behavior, and suicidal thoughts.

Are synthetic marijuana addictive?

Yes, synthetic marijuana can be addictive.

Nova Recovery Centers residential drug and alcohol rehab center offers evidence-base therapeutic interventions to address substance use disorders. After completion at our Detox Center, clients will receive individual treatment plans, combining treatment modalities with a twelve-step program to create a curriculum built to meet all addiction needs. Our long-term care strategy allows clients to experience and over the various stressors of life in a safe, therapeutic setting before starting their new life in recovery. Contact us Today or Call us today at 855.969.3668 for more information.

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States with the biggest drug overdose problem

Drug Overdoses is a Rising Concern

On February 19th, 2016, released a news article list the top 20 states affect by drug overdose. As drug addiction and overdose deaths takes center stage in our presidential candidate debates, national media outlets are beginning to bring this dark topic to light.

Although drug addiction affect many families throughout the world, there are addiction treatment facilities throughout the United States that provide an affordable treatment model. Unlike other illnesses, addiction treatment is a life long process. Often times, the process begins with a medical detox, followed by inpatient drug and alcohol treatment and then an extend sober living environment. The treating of addiction, requires a complete lifestyle change and is not cured over night. To be successful in sobriety, one must completely change their thoughts, attitudes and behaviors. list the top 20 affect states as:

  1. Nevada
  2. Arizona
  3. Utah
  4. Rhode Island
  5. New Mexico
  6. Oklahoma
  7. West Virginia
  8. Flordia
  9. Kentucky
  10. Pennsylvania
  11. Tennessee
  12. Maryland
  13. Colorado
  14. Louisiana
  15. Massachusetts
  16. Oregon
  17. Alaska
  18. Missouri
  19. Ohio
  20. North Carolina

To view the whole article, click here


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Ohio Opiate Addiction Epidemic

Residential Heroin & Opiate Addiction Treatment

Heroin and Opioid Addiction is a devastating and debilitating disease. Particular, Black Tar Heroin has ravaged the Sate of Ohio. Heroin can consume an individual’s life. Turning them from a once outgoing individual to a recluse. Opioid addiction isn’t a moral or mental weakness. It’s a chronic medical condition that results from changes in the brain. Once narcotic addiction has developed, escaping the cycle of detox and relapse is typically a long-term process.

There is a solution to Heroin and Opioid Addiction. Nova Recovery Center’s inpatient treatment program will help you take your life back!!! To help you escape the cycle of detox and relapse, we have specifically designed a continuum of care program for Opioid Addiction. Once completing detox, you will begin the healing process from Heroin Addiction. During treatment, you will be exposed to three recommended therapy modalities in treating heroin and opioid addiction:

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
  • Our Chemical Dependency Education group will teach you solutions for “Thinking Errors”.
  • Our Recovery Program utilizes Awareness Group, to teach you how your behaviors affect you and others in your life.
  • The implementation of Daring Way tm, is built on cognitive Behavioral Therapy.
  • Family Therapy
  • 12 Step Recovery Programming- Through your inpatient stay, your assigned Recovery Specialist will provide you with a deep understanding of how to implement the principles and objectives of a 12 step program.

To continue with the designed continuum of care plan, clients will be offered 9 months of sober living, one year of monitoring and our Intensive Outpatient Program. We can offer you one affordable price for the whole continuum of care, or you may choose to select certain services. Nova Recovery accepts private pay as well as most PPP insurances.  If you have out of network PPO benefits, our experienced advisors can check to see how your benefits will offset the cost of heroin and opioid treatment.

Don’t let the grip of addiction control your life any more. See how Nova Recovery can assist you in escaping this life. We will be happy to assist you with finding a solution to any financial and travel obstacles.

Prescription Drug Abuse Predicts Heroin Use

The rise in prescription drug abuse has created an unexpected trend, a rise in the use of heroin. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), 1 in 15 people who abuse prescription pain relievers will try heroin within ten years.

According to the NIDA, in 2010 about 1 in 20 or 12 million people used prescription pain medication when it was not prescribed for them. A report by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) reveals “that people aged 12 to 49 who had used prescription pain relievers nonmedically were 19 times more likely to have initiated heroin use recently than others in that age group. The report also shows that four out of five recent heroin initiates (79.5 percent) had previously used prescription pain relievers nonmedically.” As prescription drug abuse increases, the number of people who will attempt and become addicted to heroin is expected to dramatically rise in the near future.

Cheaper and Easier

Many young people who are abusing prescription drugs are switching to heroin due to the cost. Prescription drugs are expensive costing between $5 to $50 per pill depending on the type, while heroin can cost as little as $10 per balloon and can be easier to buy. Newsweek reports that there has been a shift is the demography of those who are using heroin, “Heroin addicts these days are more likely than ever before to be rich, white and suburban . . . that shift is likely attributable to the unanswerable demand for one of medicine’s greatest—and most controversial—discoveries: prescription opioids.” As restrictions have been passed to make prescription opioids more difficult to obtain, many who are already addicted are turning to heroin. Rafel Lemaitre of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy says, “It’s hard to talk about the heroin problem without talking about the prescription drug problem.”

Prescription drug abuse in and of itself is an alarming trend. However, as those who are addicted to prescription drugs seek a cheaper and more accessible high through heroin, it is becoming an increasingly dangerous situation and risks exposing young people with little to no knowledge of dangerous drugs to a precarious future of addiction and possibly death.

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