Monthly Archives: January 2017

ALCOHOL POISONING

Alcohol poisoning is not often talked about in the context of rehab or treatment for alcoholism and drug abuse, but is a hugely important part of the recovery process.

The issue behind alcohol poisoning is twofold.

Firstly is the reality of where someone who has been drinking alcohol for a long time has got to, in terms of the damage they have already done to their body and mind, and the need to recover from it.

Secondly is the potential damage that alcohol can do to an individual, whether they are a heavy drinker or an alcoholic.

The key to helping people understand about alcohol poisoning is education.

This is not to say that simply educating people  will free them from alcoholism or heavy drinking, but it will help to create an environment where people can understand much more readily the issues behind why people drink, and what help there is available for them and their loved ones.

ALCOHOL POISONING

Anyone who has had dealings with an alcoholic or heavy drinker will be well aware of how difficult it can be and usually is to get them to see that they have a problem.

In the understanding of alcoholism, it is generally understood by people who are themselves recovering alcoholics and people who work in the field of alcoholism, that the extent of denial that most  alcoholics have of the problem is essentially a defence mechanism.

It may be a bit odd to call it a defence mechanism, but for most alcoholics call at some point becomes the solution to their problems, rather than the problem itself.

This may be in stark contrast to the reality of the life of an alcoholic, which may well be in total chaos, both internally and externally.

It requires a level of experience of alcoholism to fully understand this, but it is also widely accepted that the mind of the alcoholic is often as abnormal in this record as is the body of an alcoholic in terms of how they react to alcohol.

Alcohol poisoning can be a real and substantive threat to individual who drinks too much, be they an alcoholic or not.

It is hugely important that people educate themselves and others, both formally and informally as to the dangers of alcohol and alcoholism, and hopefully this will begin the process of making a significant contribution to the problem.

Alcoholism Detox

An alcoholism detox is  possibly going to be needed in the event of anyone who is an active alcoholic, or even someone who has been drinking heavily for a long period of time but would  not technically be considered an alcoholic.

Sometimes there is much debate between what is alcoholism and heavy drinking, but in the  issue of recovery from alcoholism, and in particular the need for an alcoholism detox, it is a fairly irrelevant issue.

Anyone who has a serious problem with alcohol is likely to need help, whether they admit that themselves on what.

It is sometimes much more obvious to people around them, be they family, employer, co-workers or simply friends.

Whether or not help is offered and / or accepted can obviously be a difficult issue.

Assuming that the person who has a drink problem is willing to accept some sort of help, then the issue of an alcoholism detox is likely to occur.

ALCOHOLISM DETOX

Anyone who has been thinking heavily is likely to have been hiding that in some way from people close to them.

People who have a drink problem increasingly grow protective of alcohol, and the need to prevent other people taking alcohol with from them, or stopping them trying to drink.

In addition, it is quite possible that people who have a drink problem, or who are alcoholics, have either in the past of currently been using some type of narcotics or drugs.

The issue with all of this, is that it is quite unlikely that either the alcoholic admits to a lot of this,  or that people around them will know the full extent of their drinking and possible drug use.

For this reason it is really important that anyone seeking help for a drink and/or a drug problem is assessed by medically qualified personnel to see if they need a medical detox, and if they do for that detox to be overseen and undertaken by medically qualified staff in a safe clinical environment.

If the individual with a drink problem is entering a rehab, then it is important to check that the rehab has access to such staff and facilities, either in-house, or with a local clinical facility such as a hospital.

Alcoholism Treatment Center

An alcoholism or treatment center normally refers to a rehab, a residential rehab, where someone who has a problem with alcohol and, either considers themselves, or is considered by other people as an alcoholic, can go to get help and treatment.

The terms treatment center and rehab are pretty much interchangeable, although the extent of services and help available in either one can vary quite widely.

An alcoholism or treatment center will invariably treat people who not only are considered to have a drink problem, but may also be addicted to cortex and /or description drugs, and possibly other addictions such as gambling etc.

One of the main obstacles to anyone entering an alcoholism treatment center is the sense of denial that the alcoholics themselves will have about their drink and possible drug problem as well.

One of the main issues behind alcoholism, and the inability to help an alcoholic, is the fact that alcoholic will quite blatantly either live or try and hide the true extent of the problem.

The practical consequences of this  denial can be pretty horrific, both for the alcoholics themselves, and for people close to them, especially if those people are trying to help them.

ALCOHOLISM TREATMENT CENTER

Alcoholism is more understood today than perhaps it has ever been, but still presents huge issues in terms of helping both the alcoholic and those close to them.

Perhaps the main value of any treatment center or rehab that courts to offer addiction treatment programs is that it can create a safe place where someone with an alcoholic can mod any seek help, but can begin to explore the process of their relationship with alcohol, and why it seemingly affects the way it does.

Any rehab or treatment center that offers help to alcoholics is likely to employ a wide range of clinical and non-clinical staff.

They are also likely to employ a number of alcoholics who are themselves in recovery, either as clinical  or non-clinical staff.

When people talk about an alcoholic in recovery, they are generally referring to someone who has been an active alcoholic and has stopped drinking and has stayed sober since then.

The value of a recovering alcoholic working in a team of center or a rehab, is that in addition to the skills they bring as an individual, the hope is that they can give the residents in a rehab a sense of hope and purpose for their own future, as they are showing that they themselves can stay sober and rebuild their lives.

What is a Rehab Dual Diagnosis

Anyone entering a rehab or a treatment center is likely to come across the term dual diagnosis, as well as a lot of other jargon or terms that are fairly unique or specific to the whole world of 12-step recovery.

Perhaps the term jargon is a bit unfair, but there are certainly a wide range of terms that have some meaning, but can also be used to making them sound more important or more severe as they are.

The term dual diagnosis is normally used to refer to someone who is both an alcoholic, or who has a problem with alcohol, and also has a problem with drugs, narcotics or prescription drugs.

This broadening of the definition of an addict, from alcohol to include drugs, has come about through the growth of treatment centres, and the addiction treatment programs that they offer as a way of helping residents.

A rehab will tend to look at the issue of addiction in a slightly different way than perhaps people who do not work in the field will do, and there are pluses and minuses in this approach.

REHAB DUAL DIAGNOSIS

The majority of rehabs and treatment centers initially dealt with people who had a problem with alcohol, and could safely be described as alcoholics or alcohol dependent.

As the industry grew, it became clear that people who were entering a rehab because of an alcohol problem also had other problems such as drugs, gambling etc.

Rehabs and treatment centres started to invert this process, whereby they began to see the problem as the individual, and the addiction as a symptom of their problem.

This in many ways allowed a rehab in much broader range of client base, but also slightly distorted the real nature of an individual’s alcoholism and other types of addiction.

The value of the term dual diagnosis is often hard to verify, except say that it can flag up an individual has a problem with the hottest drugs or prescription drugs as well as alcohol.

There is a practical issue to this which is hugely important, which is knowing I have individual has a dual diagnosis can seriously affect the assessment, or the need for a medical detox, and that should be carefully monitored and accurately assess both prior to admission and during a treatment undertaken that after.

 

 

NEED FOR TREATMENT

‘A recovered alcoholic says drug addicts are falling through the cracks in Ballarat with a dire lack of rehabilitation facilities to treat their complex needs.

Russell Firth, 72, has been sober for 42 years after beginning a 12-step recovery program at the age of 30.

He is pushing for a detox unit so people seeking treatment for their addiction can access appropriate support.

“All alcoholics have a disease which is centred in our minds, the alcohol is the trigger for compulsion and you have to treat that wholly,” he said.’

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Party’s over for Alice Cooper

‘Non-stop partying. Alcohol. Drugs. Pressure.

Legendary rock star Alice Cooper says the music industry is rife with stress that can trigger mental health issues, and he’s speaking out in hopes of encouraging others to join the conversation.

In an interview in Nashville, Tenn., Cooper spoke with CTV News about why he thinks it’s important to confront mental health rather than brush it aside.

Legendary rock star Alice Cooper talks to CTV News about stress in the music industry and his struggles with alcoholism.

“I really believe everybody has a certain amount of mental disability. I think we are born with certain phobias, certain things we are afraid to talk about,” Cooper said.’

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Healing the Loss of Addiction

DARTMOUTH – St. Peter’s Episcopal Church held the first service of its kind Sunday to remember and honor lives of loved ones lost to alcoholism and drug overdoses.

“It’s so great to see so many of you here today and coming together as a community,” said Rev. Scott Ciosek as he began his sermon.

In October, the church at 351 Elm St. held a service for anyone struggling with addiction which brought about 40 people together, Ciosek said, but Sunday’s service was held on The Addiction Policy Forum’s National Day of Remembrance and focused on healing and the grieving process.

A few people donned shirts with pictures of lost loved ones.

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Ketamin and Alcoholism

Usually, when people take the animal tranquilizer ketamine—also known simply as “k” or “special K”—it’s to dissociate from their own bodies and vanish down the “K-hole,” which can include dissociative feelings of euphoria and serious short-term memory loss (… or so we hear).

Used in veterinary hospitals and as a street drug, ketamine blocks a brain reception called NMDA, which plays a key role in creating memories. But because of these memory-erasing qualities, researchers at the University College London (UCL) have begun to look at therapeutic uses for the drug—beyond partying.

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ALCOHOL DETOX

An alcohol detox is perhaps one of the most important elements of recovery from alcoholism, that is generally either not given the amount of attention it should be, or is otherwise completely ignored.

There is a bit of a myth among some people that simply stopping drinking does not present any dangers of itself, and can simply be a bit uncomfortable in terms of withdrawal symptoms.

For some people this is obviously true, however the risk is that coming off alcohol for someone who has a serious problem with it is an unknown quantity.

Anyone entering a rehab or treatment center for treatment connected with an alcohol or drug problem needs to be properly assessed by medically qualified personnel to see what the risks are concerning withdrawals, and whether or not appropriate medical detox under medical supervision may be needed.

The risks of  withdrawal symptoms from alcoholism can be severe, and in some cases life-threatening.

At that very definite possibility that someone who is an alcoholic has been drinking heavily for many years, has quite possibly been using various types of narcotics as well, is probably generally fairly unfit, and that diet if any will be fairly spartan.

ALCOHOL DETOX

The overall health of an individual who enters rehab needs to be seriously looked at, both physical and mental.

Assessing an individual regarding an alcohol detox is a crucial element of their recovery.

A rehab or treatment center should have  medically qualified personnel available who are able to oversee such a process, both in terms of the assessment and the actual detox itself.

If a rehab or treatment center does not have such qualified personnel, then they should have arrangements with a local clinical facility such as a hospital who can undertake both the assessment and detox themselves necessary.

People sometimes refer to a home detox in terms of withdraw from alcohol and drug use. This can be a highly dangerous process and is usually ill-advised.

Anyone entering a rehab treatment center should be aware that the process of recovery begins with an alcohol detox assessment, and is generally followed by a certain period of time, normally a total of a month or so, where a variety of therapeutic counselling techniques will be employed to help the individual begin the process of understanding their alcoholism and / or drug addiction.

ALCOHOLISM and LIVER CIRRHOSIS

Hospitalized patients who have alcohol problems had a significantly greater risk for developing alcoholic liver cirrhosis compared with the general population, according to the results of a Danish nationwide, registry-based, prospective cohort study.

“We studied the 15-year risk for alcoholic liver cirrhosis in hospital patients with obvious alcohol problems (a diagnosis of alcohol intoxication, harmful alcohol use, or alcohol dependence),” Gro Askgaard, MD, of the department of hepatology, Copenhagen University Hospital.

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Cocaine Addiction

Anyone who is looking for help for someone with a cocaine addiction, either for themselves or for someone they know is likely to investigate the process of residential treatment in a rehab, given that this is a fairly standard route for drug addiction recovery.

People are quite often confused by the process of treatment, and the sheer number of rehabs and treatment centres that are available offering help, knowing which one to choose and wondering how effective in terms of recovery they actually are.

The majority of residential rehabs will offer a number of addiction treatment programs, designed to help people with addictions to alcohol, normally referred to as  alcoholism or alcohol addiction, or a variety of narcotics and prescription drugs.

Most rehabs will list the various drugs that they offer treatment for, and the following is a selection that will directly appear on most rehab’s websites :  benzodiazepines, cocaine, crack, crystal meth, demerol, ecstasy, heroin, marijuana, methamphetamines, methadone, morphine, OxyContin, Suboxone, Valium, Vicodin and Xanax.

The approach that a rehab will take should consist of two main  elements.

Firstly any individual should be properly assessed by medically collar five personnel to see if a medical detox is warranted.

If it is, either the rehab itself or a nearby local clinical facility should undertake the process, and oversee it to make sure that all medical protocols regarding a detox or adhered to.

Cocaine Addiction

Once a detox has been assessed and if necessary undertaken, then the majority of time spent in a residential rehab will largely be spent undertaking a variety of therapeutic and counselling addiction treatment programs.

The aim of these addiction treatment programs will be to give the individual the basics of an understanding into the nature of their addiction, and begin the process of recovery.

The majority of rehab’s and treatment centres based their addiction treatment programs on the 12 step programme of Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous.

In addition, it is quite likely that a rehab that is treating someone for a cocaine addiction will either insist or suggest that individual attends meetings of Narcotics Anonymous, both of whilst in treatment, and once they have left is the basis of a support system and network.

It is very difficult to assess the effectiveness in terms of long-term recovery from cocaine addiction of any rehab or treatment center.

To that end, the important things to look for are the levels of staffing in a rehab, what types of clinical staff are available and what ratio of staff to patient or client this actually entails.

Additionally, it is important to make sure that the rehab adheres to all local and national laws and guidelines relating to a clinical facility.

The other thing to be aware of is the extent to which the rehab endorses and embraces the approach of a 12 step program, widely regarded as the most effective form of recovery.

There are some people who prefer a  non-12-step recovery approach, and there are some rehabs that base their addiction recovery  programs more on a life skills type approach to being clean and sober.

 

How do you help an Alcoholic

I am his conscience.

He has confided in me about serious health issues, yet he seems reluctant to go forward and deal with it. The fear in him is huge; the can of worms it will release doesn’t bode well.

I knew from day one it wouldn’t be easy to be with him. But the sober days ………..

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Rehab and Treatment

There tends to be a belief that anyone who needs a type of treatment for alcoholism or any other type of addiction needs to enter a residential rehab in order to get better and get the help they need to either stop drinking or using the substance that is causing them so much grief.

It is certainly true, that a rehab is quite often seen as the first port of call for anyone who has a problem with alcohol or drugs and needs help or treatment.

However there are many other sources of help available, either through voluntary 12-step organisations such as Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous, or through a variety of daycare and even care type treatment programs that are non-residential.

It is important to recognise that a stay in a residential rehab can have some advantages for people, but there are also disadvantages.

The main advantage and disadvantage actually tends to be the same thing, the fact that a residential rehab is in effect a bubble that can take people out of their normal life for a period of time, normally a month or so, whilst their treatment programs begins and moves forward.

Rehab and Treatment

The advantage of a rehab being a bit of a bubble is that it can isolate the individual from the pressures that are external that are part of the life, and give them a space that should be safe, that should allow them and opportunity to begin to process the underlying emotional drives that will have fuelled their drinking and their addiction.

There is no doubt that for many people the idea of a residential rehab can seem an attractive option, although the reality camp I’d often be a different experience in terms of a sense of rigidity and tight time and people management.

The significant disadvantage of a rehab is also the fact that it is a bit of a bubble, potentially.

This means that when the recovery period in a rehab or treatment center has finished, then the individual asked to return to a normal life, and integrate the experience that they have had in a rehab or treatment center back into their normal life.

This can obviously be a challenge, although in reality using meetings and the organisations of Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous can effectively bridge that gap back into so-called normal life.

 

REHAB and 12 STEP WORK

Anyone who enters a rehab is unlikely to very quickly become familiar with the term 12-step work, and the idea of concept of a 12 step program as practice and experienced by members of Alcoholics Anonymous and other tall step organisations.

The phrase 12 step work has a slightly different meaning in organisations such as Alcoholics Anonymous.

In that context it tends to refer to people who reach out and are available to help people who are new to the organisation, and who have asked for help in either attending meetings or talking to someone about the fact that they think they may have a drink problem and need some help with it.

In a rehab, the phrase 12 step work is more likely to refer to one or more of the therapeutic programs or addiction treatment programs that a rehab is likely to offer as part of its treatment methodology in relation to alcoholism and addiction.

In addition, the majority of rehabs tend to either endorse and embrace organisations such as Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous, and actively  promote the concept of a 12 step recovery program both inside and outside of the rehab.

A rehab is likely to have a number of different types of therapeutic help available, and it may have some type of self styled 12-step program as well.

REHAB and 12 STEP WORK

This may simply be a focus on step one of a program, the admission of being powerless over alcohol or some other substance.

Alternatively the rehab may have a deeper road into the recovery process, and spend more time on other parts of the 12-step program such as an understanding of a spiritual path, the nature and practice of doing an inventory on oneself, and generally becoming more willing to open up and share with other people is going on in the individual’s life.

It is worth making the point that the majority of rehabs offer any type of 12-step program all work as part of their ailing addiction recovery programs will be using an interpretation of the 12 step program of Alcoholics Anonymous that is different to the actual 12-step program of AA itself.

This is an important distinction, but one that many people understandably find it bit confusing.

The significance is simply that upon leaving rehab, the majority of rehabs will advise people to attend meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous, where they can gain a fuller understanding and actual appreciation of what AA’s program of recovery action involves.

 

DETOX HOLISTIC

A detox which is holistic is a very different process from a detox which is a medical detox, and a holistic detox should be examined thoroughly to see if it really is of any value or not.

A detox is normally thought of as a medical process, whereby anyone who has had a problem with alcohol or drugs and is intending to stop drinking or using essentially begins the process of withdrawal, and essentially experiences the effects of withdrawal, hopefully under medical supervision.

The effects of withdrawing from alcohol and/or drugs can be significant, and in some cases life-threatening.

It is always highly advisable to do any type of withdrawal or detox under medical supervision, either residential or some type of  day care.

Anyone entering a rehab or treatment center should be assessed at the outset of their stay, and if necessary a detox should be performed by medically qualified personnel who have experience and understanding of what a medical detox  involves, and can oversee and supervise a detox in a safe and professional manner.

A detox which is termed as holistic is normally a much more straightforward and safe process.

It is worth understanding the thinking behind a holistic detox, which is essentially to cleanse or purge the body and possibly the mind of either,literal. toxins, or unhealthy attitudes and beliefs.

DETOX HOLISTIC

The nature of an holistic detox is normally rooted in various types of  ways of clearing out the body, through a combination of diet, fasting, juices and the joys of practices such as colonic irrigation.

Is quite common in an holistic detox to begin with some type of a fast, possibly combined with juices and prisons and minerals, and a giving up of food and drinks that are deemed to be generally not healthy such as coffee, tea, chocolate etc.

Whilst a holistic detox should generally be quite a safe process, there are real dangers for people who have any type of medical condition, even if medically controlled such as glaucoma, where fasting or going without food or adjusting their liquid intake significantly could present real problems.

If someone is intending to have a holistic detox, it is important to understand a couple of things.

Firstly to find out exactly what is involved in the holistic detox itself over the period that one is going to be present there, and have the regiment assessed by one’s own  physician or doctor to makes sure that it is safe for them as an individual.

Also to find out the qualifications and clinical experience of those who will be administering and supervising the holistic detox, and making sure that such people asked suitably qualified both to administer the program, and deal with any medical emergencies that may result as a consequence of the programme.