National Overdose Awareness Day. In Remembrance of Those Lost From Drug Overdose. Recovery is Possible.

National Overdose Awareness Day. In Remembrance of Those Lost From Drug Overdose. Recovery is Possible.

Today is a day of awareness, education, and to speak out as many are “FED UP” with the loss of life from drug addiction. It is time to have the conversation about what our President and Government plans to do about this raging epidemic. It needs to be addressed NOW, not later. As the body count rises of loved ones, ones who would never dream of becoming a drug addict. They may have had surgery and within a week or so become addicted to painkillers better known as OPIOIDS.

These are our mothers, fathers, sisters, and brothers. They are living and breathing real humans who may have never tried or used drugs in the past. It is also our kids. Our teens and college young adults. According to the US Drug Overdose .GOV website there have been 72,000.00 estimated in 2017 that was reported. I’m sure unreported cases would make this number higher 2 fold! Visit the site for the full report.

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The U.S. government does not track death rates for every drug. However, the National Center for Health Statistics at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does collect information on many of the more commonly used drugs. The CDC also has a searchable database, called CDC Wonder.

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Drugs Involved in U.S. Overdose Deaths, 1999 to 2017             

Drugs Involved in U.S. Overdose Deaths* – Among the more than 72,000 drug overdose deaths estimated in 2017*, the sharpest increase occurred among deaths related to fentanyl and fentanyl analogs (synthetic opioids) with nearly 30,000 overdose deaths. Source: CDC WONDER

Total U.S. Drug Deaths

Total U.S. Drug Deaths* – More than 72,000 Americans died from drug overdoses in 2017, including illicit drugs and prescription opioids—a 2-fold increase in a decade. Source: CDC WONDER

* Provisional counts for 2017 are based on data available through 12/17 but are not yet finalized. Counts through 2016 are based on final annual data.*

 

Number of Deaths Involving All Drugs

National Overdose Deaths—

Number of Deaths Involving All Drugs. The figure above is a bar chart showing the total number of U.S. overdose deaths involving all drugs from 2002 to 2016 and provisional 2017 data. The chart is overlayed by a line graph showing the number of deaths of females and males from 2002 to 2016. From 2002 to 2017 there was a 3.1-fold increase in the total number of deaths. (Please visit overdose death rates for the full report.)

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If you know a loved one or family member is suffering from drug addiction, do something NOW to get them help! Don’t let “Insurance” or lack of it to “Dictate” whether or not you receiving help. Look for treatment providers giving out Grants or Scholarships for treatment.

Reach out to advocates who have connections, or check with your local Salvation Army, Goodwill, or St. Vincent De Paul organizations for help finding treatment for a loved one. Or even your local churches may have some resources. Just don’t give up looking. If you own a home, do a 1st or 2nd mortgage loan on it. WHY? YOU CAN NOT put a PRICE on saving a LIFE…

A Resources If You Have No Insurance Coverage For Addiction Treatment

How to Find a State-Funded Rehab Center – American Addiction Centers

https://americanaddictioncenters.org/rehab-guide/state-funded/

National Helpline | SAMHSA – Substance Abuse and Mental Health …

https://www.samhsa.gov/find-help/national-helpline

Apr 19, 2018 – This service provides referrals to local treatment facilities, support … If you have no insurance or are underinsured, we will refer you to your state 

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How to Get Into Rehab Without Insurance – Rehabs.com

https://luxury.rehabs.com/drug-rehab/rehab-without-insurance/

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FIND AND ATTEND A OVERDOSE EVENT:

South Florida Is!!
Friday, August 31 at 3 PM – 8 PM EDT
Starts in about 2 hours · 90°F Mostly Cloudy

WHERE? Florida Atlantic University  777 Glades Rd, Boca Raton, Florida 33431

DALLAS TEXAS IS! Today starting now till 3PM at Lake Cliff Park!!

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An advocate of Gambling Addiction, Catherine Townsend-Lyon

What to Expect from Your First Few Days of Rehab by Alek Sabin. My Weekend Recovery Guest.

What to Expect from Your First Few Days of Rehab by Alek Sabin. My Weekend Recovery Guest.

Fighting against addiction is not an easy process, as it is a behavioral disease that can take over every aspect of your life and actions. However, every recovery begins with a simple step: getting help. For many addicts, this means going to inpatient rehab.

If you’ve never been to an inpatient rehab facility, then one can seem very intimidating. The images in your mind may flip between something resembling a prison or a judgement panel of doom doctors. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth. To help one get comfortable with the idea of inpatient rehab, here’s an honest take on what to expect from your first few days of inpatient rehab…

Intake process

First of all, every patient goes through an intake process, where there is a full examination of the addict that includes a comprehensive medical exam, as well as an interview about their personal history and past of substance abuse.

Before this happens, you’ll have already packed everything that you’ll need for rehab, and are ready to spend anywhere from 30 to 90 days in this new home. These examinations will determine if you need to go through a detox process, which is absolutely necessary for people who have developed a dependency to alcohol, heroin, or other extremely addictive substances.

First Days Rehab 3

Detoxification

If you’re in inpatient rehab, then you likely will need to undergo the detoxification process, where harmful drugs are eased out of your system in a safe medical environment. This may include treatment with naloxone or other types of medically administered drugs that gradually wean the body off of a substance.

Trying to quit cold turkey on a drug like heroin can be incredibly dangerous, as vital organs may need it to keep going, and the mind is unable to produce certain chemicals on its own. This process typically lasts 2-3 days under constant medical supervision.

First group meetings are always awkward

After your body is clean of a certain substance, next comes the healing of the mind, which is a significantly more complicated process that takes time and effort. One of the scariest aspects of this new experience is the first group meeting that you go to. Even though other participants in the group will be used to each other, you will pretty much feel terribly awkward, and that’s a guarantee.

Sharing deep emotional feelings that are difficult to bring up with total strangers isn’t something that you can just do on your first go, but it’s something that you’ll get used to and come to love and appreciate, as it is necessary to create a lasting recovery. Make sure that you look for a good peer to get help and advice from, during this time.

Get ready to be searched

When you first come to a treatment facility, you probably aren’t that removed from the last time you used an illicit substance (or you wouldn’t be there in the first place). For this reason, the facility you are at will need to routinely search you and your belongings to make sure that there are no harmful substances in their place of recovery. This is in the interest of the addict, as well as everyone in the facility, who is there to avoid temptation and make personal progress.

Time away from loved ones is rough

Eventually, your friends and family will be able to come and visit you during the treatment process, but the first few days you will probably be on your own. This is to help an addict transition into the inpatient rehab lifestyle, and allowing friends and family to visit too early can make it difficult for a person to dedicate themselves completely to their treatment. Your loved ones will understand this, as they want to support you and your recovery.

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First Days Rehab 2

The rewards are great

If these events and steps seem awkward and scary, it’s because they are, at least at first. However, the honest truth is that inpatient rehab presents the best possible environment to reclaim control of your life and make a lasting recovery. When leaving, make sure you have aftercare and support waiting upon your leaving so you have the best chance at making your recovery journey an open door to Living a Balanced Happy Life You are Worthy Of!   ~Alek Sabin

Let’s Learn The Value of “Interventions” From Expert, Randy Grimes.

Let’s Learn The Value of “Interventions” From Expert, Randy Grimes.

“My wife reached out to the NFL and got me help from my drug addictions. From all I had done with pain medications and then some, I found the benzos were the hardest to beat because of the seizures and my own fear.  Now, us once broken people get to go out and help other broken people. That is what I get to do today maintaining recovery”…  ~Randy Grimes, Former NFL Pro Athlete


I’d like all my recovery friends and recovery readers to meet a wonderful man who has been to hell and back with addictions. I welcome Randy Grimes!  Yes, you may know him as an 80’s former college football star at Baylor University of Texas and in 1983 to 1992  the drafted into The NFL after for The Tampa Bay Buccaneers.  But one thing Randy knows when that is all over?

He and many professional players are left with many injuries, surgeries, and suffering much pain after their career is over.  They also try to find in their lives, “What’s Next?”  When football is over, they go on a journey looking for “now what.”  Randy found his calling and feels his new journey is now started along with his bride, Lydia to help families and those afflicted know there is Hope & Help from ALL Addictions.

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Randy knows GOD had him go through the negative to learn lessons, wisdom, and faith to set him up for all the positive he is doing today.  He is now an interventionist, a speaker, and shares his experience, hope, and strength through helping addicts and their families now at Transformations Treatment Center, located in Delray Beach, Florida.  Randy and Lydia, his wife, continue to share their experience with addiction and recovery using their knowledge and experiences healing to help not only athletes but any family struggling with their journey to recovery.

The work Randy does is a true inspiration to many like myself and to many of my recovery friends like Vance Johnson, Kristin Walker, Marilyn Davis, Dr. Kevin Coughlin just to name a few. It is always a “breath of fresh air” when “God” brings certain people in our lives for however long or short and I am a firm believer for a purpose.

“We as advocates doing outreach see at times other advocates doing work but sometimes not from the heart, for a true calling,  just for an agenda. Randy is not one of those people. He is open-minded, big-hearted and truly cares about those suffering or dying from drug addiction and tries to reach them and their families with HOPE and HELP. As he says; “The time is now, not tomorrow, or wait to try something else first. Stop ignoring what is right in front of you.”  Here is more of an in-depth look at the work he does.

 

The Time To Stop the cycle of addiction is Now!
We are here 24/7 to help guide your family, answer your questions and set up a potentially lifesaving intervention for your loved one Now at Transformations Recovery Center…

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More About Randy Grimes”

Randy is a BRI-1 Interventionist – Marketing and Business Development Executive at Transformations Drug and Alcohol Treatment Center

As a former professional football player with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Randy Grimes had spent many years battling an addiction to painkillers that he had developed while trying to treat career-related injuries. He now uses his inspiring story of recovery to help victims of drug and alcohol abuse through his work at Transformations Interventionist and National Director of Business Development/Strategy
A strong advocate for recovery, Randy launched “Athletes in Recovery,” to help athletes find addiction treatment and recovery resources. Randy and Transformations Drug & Alcohol Treatment Center have partnered with the NFL Player Care FoundationAfter the Impact FundGridiron Greats, and the Baseball Assistance Team to bring further awareness and treatment services to professional athletes and their families. As a result, hundreds of former professional athletes have since been treated.

Randy’s passion does not end with athletes; Randy believes that “when families get well, addicts get well.” Randy has performed countless interventions across the U.S. and in five countries—bringing hope and healing when all seems lost.

Randy has been married for 36 years to his college sweetheart, Lydia, who is also a Certified Family Addiction Coach. Randy is regularly a keynoter for corporate events and conferences—and a commentator on numerous national TV networks and media including NFL Network, Anderson Cooper, Father Albert, CNN, Fox Sports, MSNBC, Fox News, SiriusXM Sports, and countless others.


“Randy has been an exemplary ambassador for the Intervention industry and is a quality example of the power of professional treatment. He has helped numerous families find balance and peace of mind by getting their addicted loved ones the help they need for their drug and alcohol addiction. He enjoys speaking and speaks with others like Vance Johnson, also a former NFL pro for the Denver Broncos, as Randy was instrumental in an intervention and getting Vance the help he needed from addiction as well as many other pro athletes.”

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I have been blessed many times over in my own recovery journey with GOD’S precious gifts of keeping me connected with supportive and real “recovery warriors” like these two guys! When we get our long-term sobriety in check? It is a blessing and an honor to be able to help others still suffering from addictions. And, meeting new advocates, coaches, interventionists, and new recovery friends like Randy is just “The Icing on My Recovery Cake!” Lol!

As Randy mentioned to my dear friend Kristin Walker, Host of everythingEHR ~ Mental Health News Radio “It seems we always hear the negative side about treatment, rehab and other places and not enough about all the Positive hard work they do to help people from addictions as so many are losing their battle and family losing loved ones.” You can hear the full Guest Interview with Randy on Kristin’s Show as it is a powerful and informative intimate testimony by Randy…So click on the blue link and give this interview with Randy a listen.

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I want to personally thank Randy for allowing me to share just a wee bit of all he does along with his wife, Lydia. We need some many more warriors out here sharing a message of Hope, Faith, Healing, and Sharing Help to those looking to claim their lives back from the enemy and the bonds of addiction!

Author/Recovery Writer, Catherine Townsend-Lyon 
CAT ~ “Your Recovery Starts Here!”

 

 

Going Cold Turkey from Heroin Feels Like Hell. Our Guest Article Today.

Going Cold Turkey from Heroin Feels Like Hell. Our Guest Article Today.

“Going Cold Turkey From Heroin Feels Like Hell.  ~ By Aleksandre McMenamin

 

Anyone who has ever used heroin can attest to the fact that it is one of the most euphoric experiences that your brain can feel. There is an immense joy that is felt when using heroin; a pleasurable sensation that is without equal, feeling vastly better than anything your meager memory can recall. Even the elation of sex is incomparable, chemically, with the gamut of gratifying feelings that heroin creates for you. This is why heroin is the most addictive substance on the planet, and one whose presence is substantially growing in different regions of America. Nobody ever tells you all of the incredible catharsis that comes from using heroin. You only hear about the destructive nature of it, but the reasons why it is such a powerful temptation are too often disregarded.

Understanding the feeling of heroin is crucial to understanding why people use it, and why it is so difficult to stop using. Although there are many forms of treatment for heroin addiction, the one way that every addict has tried, at least once (and probably multiple times), is just stopping. It sounds so simple! Simply don’t use heroin, again. This process is called “cold turkey,” and it is hell.

The most initial and apparent effects of quitting heroin cold turkey are ones that are physical in nature. Within 24 hours after heroin has left your body, an intense feeling of nausea begins to saturate your body. At first, you will experience aches and soreness anywhere that you can feel. Your body is telling you that need that shot, and as far as you are concerned, you absolutely do. Every fiber of your being will be telling you to get heroin, and to do so at any cost.

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cooking the heroin.

For those who are able to get past this initial feeling, the nightmare has only started. Soon, you will begin to sweat, profusely. Your body is shaking so much that it is literally exhausting any and all energy that you have. Your skin will be burning up, but also experiencing a cold chill that echoes throughout your body, inescapably. This is the shock that occurs when your body finally realizes that another dose may not be coming. Because of exhaustion, you will need to keep eating and drinking water, but will probably not be able to keep anything down. Your stomach will reject everything that you put inside of it.

At this point, the tiredness will reach an extreme point. Never before in your life will you have needed to rest more than you will now, and the hunger is only making it worse. Getting up and walking somewhere will take concentrated effort and a great deal of pain. Every step feels like a marathon, in and of itself, because the exhaustion and discoordination are taking over every aspect of yourself. Sleep does not come easily, though, because the worst part of this journey is nothing physical, but entirely psychological.

Heroin is an exhilarating drug, but all of the incredible feelings are ones that are created by the drug, thus making your brain dependent on these artificial emotions. This stifles your brain’s ability to create its own endorphins, which means no dopamine. This is, by far, the most dangerous aspect of heroin, as well as the most destructive part of going cold turkey. At this point in the process, you have lost all of the endorphins that were generated from the heroin use, but your brain is unable to produce its own. Scientifically, this is a process that can be broken down, but the real feeling is unexplainable.

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Happiness will be impossible. The ultimate feeling of despair sets in, and you can’t believe that anything you had ever experienced before had even qualified as anguish, in your mind. As hard as you might try, you cannot think of one happy thing. Every aspect of self-doubt that sits, like a maid-in-waiting, in the back of your mind will be brought to your conscious mind. In your mind, every notion of joy and exultation that you see experienced in the world is an affront to the most inescapable of truths: we are alone. Any meaning that you ever placed on your own existence is an insult to this fact, which permeates every thought. For the next several days, the thought of suicide will always be on your mind, and it will seem like an inevitable option.

Even though sleep is the only hope you have of escaping the horror of your waking existence, it will be nigh impossible. By this point, the shock your body is experiencing will reach its apex. Every nerve will feel like it is being burned alive, individually. Only after hours of this pain will the exhaustion overtake you so you can get an hour of rest. However, due to the psychological aspects of heroin withdrawal, your active mind will fill every moment of rest with images that can only be equated with hell. Nightmares begin to define your existence, as you wake up to paranoia and hallucinations and go to sleep to the world that you imagine you deserve (which is the greatest punishment).

These effects can last weeks, at varying degrees of intensity. It is not a steady drop off. One day, you will think that everything is getting better and that you are on the other side of this, but the next day could be just as bad as the first. And after the effects of heroin withdrawal finally wear off, you begin to realize that you will never truly be free of it. After decades of sobriety pass, the craving never really leaves you, like a parasite in the back of your mind that refuses to die.

Because of all the physical and psychological risks of heroin withdrawal, it is incredibly dangerous to simply quit “cold turkey.” Today, there are plenty of tools to detox from heroin addiction, safely (such as Subutex Titration, which is wonderfully explained in this article here). 

If you are suffering from heroin addiction, you owe it to yourself and your loved ones to speak with a health professional today and to give yourself the best chance to get better and move on with life.

“Hate The Addiction Not The Addict.”

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If you need help from drug addiction? Please visit Narcotics Anonymous Today
SUICIDE is never an OPTION to Stop Addiction: National Suicide Prevention Lifeline    CALL: 1-800-273-8255  Available every day  24 hours a day  .  .  .  .

 

 

“Presented By: “Recovery Starts Here ~ Author, Catherine Townsend-Lyon”

 

UNITE To Face Addiction Advocacy Day Is Today!

Hello Recovery Friends and Welcome All,

Well, I have to tell you, what a fantastic evening of speakers and music last night in Washington, DC!!
It was a “Historic Rally for Awareness of Addiction.” Joe Walsh, Sheryl Crow and Steven Tyler were AWESOME on stage last night. Everyone of my recovery friends and the fine folks who put this rally together were sharing so much on Twitter and Facebook, I had a hard time keeping up with posts and sharing all the action throughout social media!
Here is are a few shots of the performances that took place for “UNITE to Face Addiction” and our voices were LOUD! .. .. ..

” place out to the Universe to help us get these two gents out to the Fest next year, if possible 😎 Recovery Rockfest would love to have these two GUYS who played last night next year!! XO” Nyla Cione of http://www.recoveryrockfest.com

RECOVERY ROCK FEST's photo.
(Steven Tyler and Joe Walsh at UNITE to Face Addiction)

Michael King added 7 new photos
'Yes. Darryl Strawberry. My childhood baseball hero. Yes.'
'I gotta tell ya, Steven Tyler is BRINGING IT at UNITE To Face Addiction' 'Jason Isbell helping us UNITE'
Michael King's photo.

Liz Holt Audette's photo.

(photo’s courtesy of Michael King)

SO your most likely wondering what is going on today? Today is “Advocacy Day”  . . .
Here is more about what UNITE to Face Addiction is doing on Capitol Hill .. .. ..

Advocacy Day ~ 10-05-2015

On Monday, October 5th, the day after the UNITE to Face Addiction Rally, citizen advocates will meet with policymakers on Capitol Hill to engage in conversations about the need for addiction solutions and the growing constituency of consequence that is demanding solutions.

Advocacy Day has two overarching goals:

  1. Achieve a health response to addiction
  2. Improve public safety and protect civil liberties to enhance health outcomes of those in or seeking recovery from addiction involved with the criminal justice system

To achieve these goals, citizen advocates will:

  1. Thank Members of Congress who have co-sponsored 524/HR 953, The Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA), and ask other Members to add their names as co-sponsors to this bipartisan piece of legislation.
  2. Ask their Members of Congress to sign a letter to federal agencies indicating that they are in support of full implementation and enforcement of the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act.
  3. Ask Members of Congress to support the REDEEM Act (S 675/HR 1672).

To download the Advocacy Day training presentation, click here. To see the full training webinar, click here. For best viewing, please be sure to download the webinar by clicking the download button located in the top right-hand corner.

Registration for Advocacy Day is now closed. Please direct all questions, including online sign-up questions, to advocacy@facingaddiction.org.

Now even though the Big Rally is over, that doesn’t mean we are done. WE ARE just beginning this fight and you can help! UNITE to Face Addiction is building HOPE, HEALING, and HELP! With all donations taken in, they are building a foundation to help those in need of treatment and other services to RECLAIM their lives back from addiction. So please, you can help by Donating or Texting your financial support here!

By Text: TEXT to  “facing” 41444  or by donating through the website here: http://www.facingaddiction.org

WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT! Let us all “UNITE To Face Addiction!!” XOXOXO

Together We Can Face Addiction

Addiction impacts one out of three families in America. Sadly, today more than 90% of people in need of treatment or recovery do not receive it – this discrimination must end now.

No one should ever have to overcome addiction alone. No longer can we sit on the sidelines and let others worry about changing the system. Facing Addiction is OUR movement.

Your support will help build a national campaign that will forever change how we UNITE to Face Addiction.

Together, we can save lives – starting right now.  But we need your help.  Please donate today.

Click here to make a monthly recurring donation.

Thank you!
UNITE to Face Addiction

Author, Catherine Townsend-Lyon & Gambling Addiction Recovery Advocate

Facing Addiction.

Scott Magnuson's photo.
Scott Magnuson's photo.

 

Guest Featured Author & Article: 20 Questions To Ask When Considering Inpatient Rehab.

Hello And Welcome Recovery Friends,

In honor of National Recovery Month, I’ve had many ‘Featured Recovery Guest Authors’ here to celebrate and share along with me here on my blog. So we have a new Recovery Guest Author, Alek Sabin who has written a special article for all of us. Now we all know how taunting it was when we started early recovery, what was the best way to seek help and approach the decision. Do we get treatment, therapy, church, go to inpatient or outpatient rehab or treatment?

There are so many choices these days, but lack of federal funding is still standing in the way for others who can afford rehab or treatment. Now that’s another blog post for the future! I do think this article by Alek can help answer some of these questions and concerns, and lead new comers to recovery in the right direction.. ..

20 Questions to Ask When Considering Inpatient Rehab ~ By: Alek Sabin

If you or a loved one are planning on checking into an inpatient rehabilitation facility, it is important to have all the knowledge necessary to find the right place for you. Knowing what to ask or look for in a rehab facility could make treatment smoother and more effective, and could even end up saving your life. Here are some questions you should consider asking any inpatient rehab facility that you may be checking in to:

 1.) How much will it cost?

The cost of inpatient rehabilitation varies greatly, with some places charging monthly payments as low as $7,500 to some as high as $120,000! Always know what you are getting for the cost. How much of that money is actually going towards helping the patient get better? What does this facility offer compared to other rehabilitation clinics of the same price?

 2.) Will insurance cover it?

Insurance companies always want their customers to take the cheapest health care option, and especially when it comes to inpatient rehabilitation. The truth, however, is that the cheapest options won’t always guarantee treatments with results. Always remember that, despite the initial cost, rehabilitation will be cheaper in the long run when stacked up against the costs of poor health, career instability, and damaged relationships that can be brought about by substance abuse. If the right place for you isn’t covered by your current provider, other methods of payment can be discussed with the rehabilitation facility.

 3.) How long will it last?

The answer to this question differs greatly from case to case. Not only are certain substances more addictive than others, but the effects of treatment can vary from person to person. Most psychologists recommend a stay of 90 days for the brain to recover, but other programs can be upward of a year depending on the severity of the addiction. Sometimes, the switch may be made from inpatient to outpatient rehabilitation to help cushion the costs of treatment, assuming that the patient has made strides in their recovery.

 4.) What is their track record?

Always ask how successful they have been with treating other patients with similar addictions. How does that rank up against other facilities? Your health, and even life, could be at stake. Don’t take for granted that you are at the right place until you know that you have the best odds you can get.

 5.) What about outpatient rehabilitation?

While outpatient rehabilitation can be great for some, it can also be dangerous to delay getting patients with harmful addictions the help that they need from inpatient rehabilitation. Ask some health professionals what they recommend depending on the situation. Certain drugs may practically require inpatient rehabilitation (such as heroin), while others may be easier to kick.

 6.) How much therapy will the patient get daily?

It’s important to know how much treatment a patient will actually receive at a facility. Some clinics have a physician work with you 2-3 times a day, while others will be closer to 5-6. Always make sure that the level of care provided is conducive to your recovery needs.

 7.) Is there 24-hour care?

Most inpatient facilities will have nurses on staff around the clock. This is one of the primary advantages that inpatient rehabilitation can give. If you feel that this level of care is important to your recovery, double-check and make sure this is a service that they offer.

 8.) How often do the doctors visit?

During every patient’s journey to recovery, they will be assigned a rehabilitation doctor who is responsible for them during their stay. It’s important that this doctor be able to note progress in a patient’s physical and mental health. Because of this, patients should always ask how often the doctors check up on their well-being.
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 9.) What if I require other medical attention?

Most inpatient rehab facilities are equipped to handle symptoms that a patient may develop from extended substance abuse. However, patients should be certain to specify any separate health concerns that they may have, and ask how the facility will be able to address those.

10.) Do they address mental health?

Sometimes the cause of a person’s addiction may have more to do with mental health, such as depression. It’s important to make certain that the facility will cater to those needs, and has the personnel to do so.

 11.) What about my work?

Inpatient rehabilitation requires a patient’s absence from work and other commitments for months at a time. Luckily, most facilities deal with employers on a regular basis, and are able to communicate the importance that recovery will make a happier, more productive employee.

 12.) What procedures take place when the patient is checked in?

Upon being checked in, most inpatient facilities will conduct an orientation for you and your family. Afterwards, they will begin intake, where some places will take your personal effects and put them aside during the duration of your stay. After intake, most facilities will give the patient several exams so that they can better know how to begin treatment. Ask, and be prepared for check in to your inpatient facility.

 13.) What things should I pack?

Different facilities will have different standards when it comes to what patients should bring with them. Some places will allow almost everything, including pets, to come along for the patient’s extended stay, while others prefer patients to not even bring their own clothes. Ask your inpatient rehab facility what their policy is. Either way, be sure to pack a toothbrush.

 14.) What is the ratio of staff to patients?

If a facility has a lower ratio of staff to patients, there is a good possibility that the patient’s individual needs could be overlooked, and that treatment could be less effective. Always find out how many patients will be there during your stay, and then ask how many staff are on premise at any given time.

15.) Can family visit, or even stay?

Some facilities have strict hours or days when family can visit, while some don’t allow visiting at all. Many places typically allow one family member to stay overnight if needed. Make sure you are fully aware of visitation policies and what they mean before checking into rehabilitation.

 16.) What activities are there?

Patients won’t just be seeing physicians while they are in rehabilitation. Most inpatient rehab facilities will provide therapeutic activities for patients to enjoy in their free time while they are there. Some of these are a way of calming the mind, while others offer a positive reinforcement of “sober time.” Ask about these activities, and make sure there is something you will enjoy doing.
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 17.) Should the patient attend rehab further from home?

Depending on the person, and a variety of factors, it might be beneficial for a patient to attend rehabilitation at a facility that is further away from their home. To see if this is the right option for you and your situation, make sure to ask a rehab doctor before checking in.

 18.) Will my primary physician have access to my rehab medical information?

After the rehabilitation period, a patient’s primary physician must have access to medication prescriptions or medical notes by the rehab doctor. It is important to talk to the facility and clarify this process before beginning rehabilitation.

 19.) Can I get my medication in rehab?

Inpatient rehabilitation facilities will allow most medications that patients have been prescribed before being checked in. However, some medications may affect the patient’s treatment, and must be reconsidered before moving forward. Make sure to talk to the rehab doctor about any medications you are taking before getting checked in.

 20.) What happens in the case of relapse?

Relapse doesn’t mean that the rehabilitation failed. It just means that the patient has relapsed and must take more steps towards recovery. Talk to the inpatient facility before checking in to see what steps they will plan on taking in the case of a relapse.
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When Gambling Addiction & Alcoholism Collide ~ A Re-Share Article I Found By Addiction-Treatment.Com

Hello Recovery Friends, Readers, and Welcome New Visitors,
*HAPPY HOLIDAYS*

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This blog post re-share is for one of my New and resent visitors. In the safety of anonymity, they will know who they are and can comment if they would like to be known, and where you can find them.
YES,. . .  I know, everyone loves a Mystery . . .LOL.

But I always show this courtesy to all my recovery’ friends. They happen to come by my ‘Author Facebook page’ and sent a direct message asking a really interesting question??  They asked if people with gambling problems or addiction have an alcohol problem as well? I did answer from my own personal experiences.
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As I did abuse alcohol, but it wasn’t my true addiction, gambling was. They also said they could not find much on this topic. So I did some research and I actually found a treatment website that had an article about this topic and thought I would share it with my new friend, and all of you.

As we all know sitting in ‘the rooms’ of NA, AA, or GA, we hear from many who have what we call, “Dual Addictions”.
So here is the “Article” I happen to come across, and I how this helps. And if any of you know of any recovery websites that address’ this topic, please share the link so we all can go visit and be informed together! I feel we can never have too much knowledge about addiction and recovery!  *Catherine*
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DUAL DIAGNOSIS: When Alcoholism and Gambling Addiction Collide . . .
Posted Wed, May 1, 2013 

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Alcoholism and gambling addiction are both serious problems that can have life-altering consequences. When one person suffers from both of these disorders at the same time, it can be difficult for healthcare professionals to differentiate their symptoms. Fortunately, treatment of co-occurring mental illnesses is becoming more common. Those who are seeking help for a gambling addiction as well as alcoholism need to find a rehab program that specializes in dual diagnosis.

Alcoholism or alcohol addiction is one of the most well-known and common substance abuse addictions. Alcoholism occurs when a person becomes dependent on beer, wine, or spirits to help him manage on a day-to-day basis. Some alcoholics are functioning, meaning that they can maintain their personal relationships and their job even though they consume alcohol every day and cannot get by without it. Some alcoholics are ruled by their desire for alcohol, even though it harms their family and work life. Sometimes people start out as functioning alcoholics and lose control later.

Gambling addiction is characterized by the need to gamble, even when there are serious consequences for gambling. People addicted to gambling may spend a large amount of time thinking about gambling and figuring out how to get money to fund their gambling. Some people with gambling problems repeatedly put themselves in severe financial straits, relying on friends or family members to bail them out. Gambling addiction is regarded as a mental health disorder.
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Dual diagnosis occurs when someone is found to be suffering from a substance abuse problem as well as a mental health disorder. Alcoholism and gambling addiction co-occur frequently. This may be in part because gambling establishments often provide alcohol. Some people who are addicted to gambling use alcohol to self medicate. Gambling is fundamentally an impulse control disorder. People who are addicted cannot control their impulse to gamble, even when there are consequences.
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Some people may drink because it dulls their desire to act on their impulse to gamble. Unlike some other mental health disorders that commonly co-occur with alcoholism, gambling addiction is fairly easy to identify. Other problems, such as clinical depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and borderline personality disorder can be harder to diagnose in the face of alcohol abuse. That is in part because long-term use of alcohol can cause you to develop symptoms such as depression. After the fact, it’s impossible to determine whether the symptoms existed before overuse of alcohol began.

Gambling addiction can be easily identified because the behavior is obvious. Frequently people with gambling addictions are forced to seek help because of the loss of job, the breakdown of a marriage, or another serious life-altering problem. Before treatment for the gambling addiction can be successful, the alcohol addiction must be addressed. The reverse is also true. There is no point in working hard to recover from a gambling addiction when there’s no way that you or your therapist can know to what extent your symptoms are controlled or worsened by your use of alcohol.

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Likewise, you cannot completely recover from alcohol dependency without addressing your gambling problem. During rehab, you will spend much time with a therapist who will help you examine how you came to be addicted to alcohol. If you are using both gambling and alcohol as a way to numb yourself emotionally, than continuing gambling will not help you face the emotional problems that led you to drink.

To get help recovering from gambling addiction and alcoholism, you need to find a rehab center that specializes in dual diagnosis. Though this is a specialized form of rehab, there are still plenty of options in terms of cost, treatment method, and philosophical approach. If you are religious, you may feel most comfortable in a treatment program based on the teachings of your religion. If you are concerned about impulse control, you may wish to seek out a treatment program that places you in real life situations and helps you learn to cope. For example, some rehab programs may organize trips to bars or casinos so that you can practice being in these environments without succumbing to your addiction.

Some rehab programs may use medication to help manage your impulse control problems or urge to drink. If your doctor feels that medication is necessary for you to move forward in your treatment, remember that medication can be a stepping stone. You will not necessarily need to stay on medication permanently.

After you get out of rehab, you may wish to work with a therapist who can help you on an ongoing basis. The therapist will be important support for you if you are ever tempted to relapse. Rather than work with two therapists, one to help you with your alcohol addiction and the other to help you with a gambling addiction, look for one therapist who specializes in dual diagnosis. If such a therapist is not near your home, you can look into alternative therapy methods such as virtual addiction treatment sessions.

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Now I know there are many ways we can recover. We can use a combination of several things. Support is also very important to a person attempting recovery, especially early recovery. Get a sponsor if you are in a 12-Step program.
I know how hard it was to reach my own very first year in recovery from gambling addiction and alcohol abuse. It took me a couple tries, and then some!! My 2nd book almost finished and soon to come out is about exactly this problem. How to reach that ‘First Year’ in early recovery. So it is much of the topics in my next soon to release, and will be the follow-up to my current book out right now titled; “Addicted To Dimes”, (Confessions of a Liar and a Cheat).

My current book is a ‘Non-fiction Memoir’ of my personal story of the how’s & why’s I became an addicted compulsive gambler, and the my rocky road to recovery. I share all of it! They say we can recover without learning WHY we became addicts in the first place, but I say this a lot that some of us do find out some of the Why’s of why we turned to addiction.
So I hope this article I found explains a little about having a gambling addiction and alcoholism together. Many of us have dual addictions, and some of us on top of that battle Mental illness too like I do, but remember, “There is help and there is HOPE”!!
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Many Blessings To You,
Author, Catherine Lyon
http://www.amazon.com/Addicted-Dimes-Confessions-Liar-Cheat-ebook/dp/B00CSUJI3A

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