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Drug Use to Abuse

If a loved one struggling with substance abuse, it may not be easy to recognize the signs of drug use if you do not know what you are looking for. Without proper treatment, drug use can quickly turn into addiction. As a result, users may begin to show changes in behavior, risk-taking, health problems, and mental health disorders.

Drug Use to Abuse

The road from drug use to abuse is quite slippery. Let us take painkillers for example. The user may start with a prescription, say post-surgery. Over time, s/he realizes that the pain pills numb not just the pain, but also the mind. The person goes on taking the pills even after the wound heals or the pain goes away. The body becomes tolerant to the drug and the person is now using the drug for the euphoric effects, in other words, abuse.

Treating Drug Abuse

It’s not enough to spot the signs of drug use. They should be dealt with promptly. The first step in treatment is detoxification. It helps you overcome the physiological dependence.

The next step is inpatient drug rehab where the person learns to cope with triggers that caused the addiction and cultivates a drug-free lifestyle. This may include therapies such as –

  • One-on-one talk therapy
  • Group therapy
  • Family counseling
  • Dual diagnosis treatment
  • Physical Fitness therapy
  • Life skills training

Symptoms of Alcohol Poisoning

Alcohol abuse is extremely common. One important reason for this is the easy and legal availability of alcohol. However, alcohol poisoning is a serious medical condition that can cause a great deal of harm. The symptoms of alcohol poisoning depend on the quantity consumed and the user’s experience with alcohol abuse.

Alcohol Poisoning
Alcohol poisoning refers to a serious medical condition where too much alcohol has been consumed too quickly. This can cause fatal effects.

Alcohol is metabolized and filtered by the liver. The liver can only filter a single serving of alcohol every hour. If more is consumed, it can poison their body which may suffer serious side effects.

Symptoms of Alcohol Poisoning
Symptoms of alcohol poisoning should be immediately treated. These include –

• Choking or vomiting
• Severe disorientation or confusion
• Loss of consciousness
• Hypothermia or clammy skin
• Blue lips or fingernails
• Irregular breathing pattern and pulse

Whenever high quantities of alcohol are consumed, alcohol enters the bloodstream, affecting the brain and vital bodily functions, such as breathing, heart rate, body temperature, nerve function and more.

To recover from alcohol, several programs are offered by leading alcohol rehabs, such as Pacific Bay Recovery in San Diego –

• Inpatient drug rehab
• Dual diagnosis treatment
• Individual therapy
• Addiction counseling
• Relapse prevention

How to Prevent and Deal with a Drug Overdose?

People who suffer from substance abuse are always at risk of a drug overdose. If you or a loved one uses drugs or alcohol, it is important to know what a drug overdose looks like and what you can do if someone you know is experiencing an overdose.

What is a drug overdose?

An overdose occurs when a person consumes too much of a drug. Overdose amounts refer to amounts a person’s metabolism cannot detoxify before it leads to serious medical problems, including death.

What to do if someone is experiencing a drug overdose?

If you find the person has stopped breathing or is not conscious, call 911 right away. While you are waiting for the ambulance, ensure that the person stays awake. If you cannot keep them awake, keep a close watch on their breathing. If the person stops breathing, begin CPR till the ambulance arrives.

How to prevent a drug overdose?

If someone you love is addicted to drugs or alcohol, the best way to prevent an overdose is to help them enter a substance abuse rehab and overcome their addiction. The addiction specialists and counselors at the rehab will help your loved one wean off the substance and cultivate a drug-free lifestyle.

Rehab Can Help You Turn Your Life Around

Checking into a rehab is the biggest step in your recovery journey. You may not realize it now, but your life will change in many positive ways when you join a rehab.

Friends who understand you

When you complete rehab treatment, you may want to keep some old friends away, especially those who are still using. Having new friends who understand what you have been through and are also on a similar journey of their own can be a big source of emotional support. You’ll have the opportunity to make many new friends, who understand you, at the rehab.

Drug-free life is possible

Those who are addicted to drugs may not be able to imagine a life without them. Treatment programs at a good rehab will open your eyes to the possibility of a sober life and also help you learn how. You may be able to make a whole new start in life as you explore new activities or rekindle old interests.

Learn to cope with stress and trauma

The most important thing or skill you would learn at the rehab is coping with stress or trauma that may have triggered the abuse. You would no longer need to rely on drugs to handle stress or bad feelings.

Be in control of your life again

Once you overcome drug abuse and start afresh, you’ll regain control of your life. You’ll be able to appreciate all things, big and small, that you may have missed when substance abuse controlled your life.

Recovery brings challenges. But these positive changes will make it worth the effort. You’ll soon realize there is more fun in sobriety, than you ever had in addiction.

Symptoms of Heroin Overdose

Illegal drug abuse, such as heroin, can have negative effects on a person’s body and mind. As with any other addictive substance, it’s important to recognize the signs of abuse. Learning about these symptoms can help save lives.


Heroin is an opioid, derived from morphine, that creates the feelings of relief and euphoria. Unfortunately, a growing desire for such pleasurable sensations can increase the risk of heroin addiction. It’s important to know about heroin overdose symptoms so that you can help a sufferer get prompt medical treatment.

Heroin Overdose Symptoms

Commonly observed heroin overdose symptoms include –

  • Difficulty breathing– Heroin can create powerful depressant effects which can slow down your breathing.
  • Extreme lethargy – The powerful sedating effect of heroin can make you extremely lethargic. The person may sleep longer and be difficult to awaken.
  • Pale skin – A lack of oxygen and blood flow can cause the person’s skin to look pale.
  • Constricted pupils – Tiny pupils is a well-known sign of heroin abuse.
  • Blue lips or fingertips – Blue lips or tips of the fingers due to decreased oxygen levels calls for immediate medical attention.

Heroin abuse can continue for a long period before an accidental overdose. Pay close attention to any symptoms of abuse to prevent overdose.

Common Effects of Xanax Abuse

Benzodiazepines are among some of the most commonly prescribed medications today. Xanax is one of the commonly prescribed Benzodiazepines. Read on to understand Benzodiazepines the side effects and the dangers of abusing Xanax.

What Is Xanax?

Xanax is a powerful sedative in the benzodiazepine category. It’s used for treating anxiety, panic disorders, and insomnia. Xanax acts on the brain to create a sense of relaxation and restfulness.

What Are Common Xanax Side Effects?

Xanax can produce many undesirable side effects, some of which may be dangerous. Some common Xanax side effects are –

  • Chronic dry mouth
  • Forgetfulness or brain fog
  • Drowsiness
  • Loss of interest in hobbies

Signs of Xanax Abuse

Xanax abuse affects everyone differently but the common symptoms include –

  • Slurred Speech – Since Xanax affects the mouth and tongue, it can negatively impact the speech quality.
  • Mental Confusion – Due to the depressed brain function, the person may seem confused or face difficulty in concentrating.
  • Coordination Issues – When someone takes a sedative, the entire body is in a state of relaxation. Abuse can make the muscles unable to function normally, creating coordination issues.
  • Disorientation – Xanax abusers may feel disoriented and/or unaware of the time, day, or place where they are.

You don’t have to let drug abuse control your life. You can overcome Xanax side effects with the help of professionals at a good rehab.


Opioid Overdose Symptoms

Drug overdose causes most accidental deaths in America, even more than motor vehicle accidents. Opioid overdoses form a large chunk of these drug overdose deaths.

Heroin overdoses are no longer limited to the homeless or the partying rock-stars. In the past few years, heroin and other opioids have made their way everywhere. That brings a risk of overdose. Several things that can be done to prevent opioid overdose. Knowing drug overdose symptoms is an important part of it.

Drug Overdose Symptoms

Drug overdose may lead to death, but if caught early, a medical facility could reverse or manage it.

During an overdose, the person’s pulse, rate of breathing and blood pressure can change to the extent it becomes life threatening. Aspiration (vomit being breathed into lungs) is a big concern. The person experiencing an overdose may experience muscle spasms, seizures and/or loss of consciousness, all of which may send him/her into a comatose state. The brain’s and other vital organs’ function may be permanently damaged.

Reasons for Opioid Overdose

Not all opioids are illegal. On the contrary, opioids are often prescribed as painkillers. For example, Hydrocodone, Oxycodone, morphine and codeine can be obtained by prescription. These opiates may also be obtained illegally on the streets, including the most popular one – heroin.

Because so many different types of opiates are available by prescription and illegally, the likelihood of overdose is high, regardless of intention. For example, a specific batch of heroin may be purer than another or may even include another type of drug. Overdose may also result from re-use after a period of abstinence.

Why Personalized Addiction Treatment Plans are Critical to Your Recovery

Drug addiction and related problems are on the rise. The rate at which these are increasing indicates an urgent need to deal with them. We need to understand how to make addiction treatment better and which approaches have proven the most effective.


Tailor-made or personalized addiction treatment plans, specific to the individual, are designed considering every aspect of that person’s addiction. Here is a closer look at why personalized or individualized addiction treatment is critical for complete recovery.




Exposure to drug use, easier availability of drugs, peer pressure and several other factors may influence a person’s drug abuse risk. A person who becomes addicted to prescription pain pills and then moves on to use, say heroin, experiences drugs differently than a person who had access to heroin because his/her parents used it.


Individualized addiction treatment plans focus on designing the right solution for each patient. This includes the patient’s personal history, length and frequency of abuse, social experience, mental health and personality. Once all that has been studies, a tailor-made treatment program can be created to ensure the person not only completely recovers but also doesn’t relapse and cultivates a drug-free lifestyle.


Dual Diagnosis Needs Personalized Treatment


In many cases, an individualized treatment plan is not only preferable but also a necessity.


Often patients are dealing with an addiction along with a mental health problem, such as depression, anxiety or PTSD. This condition is referred to as a “dual diagnosis.”


The mental health issue can interfere with the patient’s recovery process. An untreated substance abuse problem can also interfere with the person’s ability to manage the mental health issue. This is why individualized addiction treatment, that involves a psychiatrist as well as a physician, is necessary for such patients.


Take Charge of Your Rceovery


Individualized treatment also ensures that the patient remains engaged with his/her own recovery and doesn’t feel as though choice has been taken out of their hands. By working with de-addiction specialists and other medical professionals, patients can come to a better understanding of their own problems while developing solutions for long-term sobriety.

Why Choose a Holistic Drug Rehab?

Since drug or alcohol addiction affects all areas of your life, and not just your body, it is natural that you need a treatment program that addresses all those areas. This approach is referred to as holistic rehab. Holistic rehab involves not only overcoming physical addiction, but also addressing factors that have contributed to the addiction.

Here are the most common reasons people prefer a holistic drug rehab.

Treating the Body

To overcome the physical addiction, the body needs to go through detox and withdrawal. Holistic rehabs facilitate weaning off the substance and manage withdrawal. In addition, they also help you repair the damage that the substance may have caused to your body. Your treatment will include learning about healthy eating and practices such as yoga to ease the physical pain and cultivate an overall healthy life.

Treating the Mind

An addiction is never just an addiction. There are several factors at play. Holistic rehab will identify and address those factors through individual and group therapy. This may include treating any psychological factors.

Individualized Treatment

Finally, it is important to treat the person as a whole. Holistic rehab involves formulating an individualized treatment plan for every patient. No two people are the same. This is why your rehab will design a customized program that works best for you.

3 Common Substance Abuse Withdrawal Symptoms

A person suffering from addiction goes through withdrawal on stopping the use of alcohol and drugs. Chemical dependence will lead to discomfort if the use is stopped. The degree of discomfort will depend upon how the substance interacts with the brain and body. However, there are some withdrawal symptoms that universally affect all former users.

Since withdrawal may have severe side effects, it is advisable to wean off the substance, under medical supervision, at a medical detox center.

Flu-Like Symptoms

Substance withdrawal, especially alcohol and opiate withdrawal often causes flu-like symptoms. These may include diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting.

Vomiting and diarrhea can cause loss of electrolytes and fluids, leading to severe dehydration, if left untreated.

Shaking and Sweating

Shaking is a common symptom in alcohol and benzo withdrawal. It can manifest in response to extreme emotions, such as anxiety.

Changes in nerve cells can also cause shaking. These changes may be the result of reduced brain activity, caused by depressants. The brain gradually adjusts to lower activity. Stopping drug use can boost activity levels. This may result in trembling.

Sweating can accompany shaking and usually occurs during alcohol and opiate withdrawal.

Anxiety and Depression

Anxiety and depression are also common during withdrawal. Anxiety and depression often occur together and need to be addressed simultaneously.

Severe anxiety involves constant worry and irrational fear. Depression is an all-encompassing feeling of sadness and despair. While most people may feel these from time to time, it becomes a problem when anxiety and despair starts disrupting people’s lives.

This is why, if you or a loved one wants to stop using drugs, rather than taking the risk of doing it at home, seek professional help at a rehab. Good rehabs, such as Pacific Bay recovery in San Diego, offer detox and de-addiction programs including –

  • Medical Detox
  • Inpatient Program
  • Outpatient Program
  • Individual therapy
  • Group and family therapy
  • Addiction counseling, and more