Searching for Addiction Treatment Help

Searching for and settling on the right treatment facility can be a daunting task for even the most skilled researchers. There are so many factors that need to be taken into account. How much does the rehab cost? Where is it? Will they accept my insurance? Will they address the other problems in life that may have preceded the drug and/or alcohol use?

Currently there are various ways to look for treatment options, with search engines such as Google being the most prominent, but it is mainly left to the family members or the addicts themselves to try and locate something. This can pose a problem for some families and even prevent addicts from getting the help they need if they are met with barriers such as running into predatory call centers, waiting lists, higher than usual financial obligations and more.

Earlier this month Google made an unprecedented move in this realm by removing paid ads from many addiction treatment related keywords. The problem, though, is that they also are preventing the good places from being able to advertise there as well. The restriction is reportedly being placed on tens of thousands of keywords and may continue to roll out over time.

Aside from going to a search engine, there aren’t many known resources that people can call and get help searching for rehabilitation programs and supporting services. One college professor and her graduate research assistant are seeking to change that, starting with compiling a list of all of their local resources.

The list encompasses all available treatment options for an addict, including hotlines, prevention services, sober living providers, rehab programs, other medical professionals, and more. The hope is that with one master list, someone searching for help can easily access it, as the goal is to streamline the process.

“My hope is that while we’re getting information to learn more about substance abuse and addiction services across [our area], we are also able to capture what the state of mental health resources are and then to provide resources that have been validated and new information,” explained Amitta Parker one of the lead researchers of the project.

However, this is just one local area. In order to provide comprehensive help to all of those in need, a nationwide master list would have to be constructed and maintained. This massive undertaking has been attempted by government entities like the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), but it is far from complete. In fact, many treatment facilities are left off the list and it is unclear how often the database is updated or what other resources are available as a clearinghouse.

The continued loss of lives from addiction makes it clear that we must do a better job connecting up those who are looking for help with the people and places that can provide the services they’re looking for. Maybe Google and SAMHSA could start to work together on such a massive project, and learn a thing or two from these local researchers.

A Closer Look at Effects of Alcohol on Men and Women

Effects of Alcohol on Men and WomenScience is constantly evolving and shedding light on previous misconceptions or questions. And in the case of alcohol, a new study has shown how men and women react differently to the substance, specifically in their brains. After conducting a small group study on men and women who fit the criteria for heavy drinkers, but not alcohol abuse, the researchers were able to note a major difference between the two sexes in the type of receptors that were influenced when alcohol was consumed.

GABA receptors are responsible for shutting off brain activity, they are integral in preventing anxiety and problems with these receptors often lead to depression. There are two specific GABA receptors, GABA-A and GABA-B. GABA-A is thought to have more of a connection to drinking patterns, while GABA-B has been found to be responsible for the desire for alcohol.

“Generally, our work showed that alcohol causes more pronounced changes in both electrical and chemical neurotransmission in men than women. There are two types of GABA receptors, A and B. Long-term alcohol use affects neurotransmission through both types in males, but only one type, GABA-A, is affected in females,” explained Outi Kaarre, lead author of the study.

The findings were presented at the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology conference earlier this month in France.

So, if men who are considered to be heavy drinkers show more activity in both A and B GABA receptors, while women who are drinkers only show activity in GABA-A receptors, what does this mean for alcohol medications and theories of addiction?

First of all, there are certain medications that have been designed to help alcoholics curb their cravings, but these medications have not reliably worked on women. This may be because the medications are geared to the GABA-B receptors, which do not appear to be a problem in female heavy drinkers. Secondly, this new information may shed more light on why women become heavy drinkers, and why men are more prone to becoming heavy drinkers, and the reasons may not be the same for both sexes.

Understanding this difference could change the approach to alcoholism treatment and medications, especially as science continues to advance in the understanding of the intricacies of our bodies and minds.

If you have a loved one struggling with alcohol abuse or alcoholism, contact Desert Cove today to find out more about our treatment program and how we can help.

Study Confirms Fentanyl’s Role in Opioid Epidemic

fentanyl opioid epidemicThe fentanyl epidemic in the United States is growing by the day, but because it is a relatively new additive, there is little research to compare the current situation with history. However, a recent study conducted by researchers at Boonshoft School of Medicine Center for Interventions, Treatment, and Addictions Research (CITAR) at Wright State University provides more concrete evidence about the fentanyl problem in this country. This is important because in order to reduce the number of people who ingest this powerful drug, there will need to be evidence of its growth and education about what exactly is fentanyl and how to avoid its use.

Fentanyl is a pharmaceutical drug that is 50 to 100 times more powerful than morphine. Most commonly, the drug is prescribed to cancer patients, but is also given in hospital settings to combat major pain issues. Regarding abuse, fentanyl has gained popularity with drug dealers because of increased potency when it is combined with heroin. Due to inadequate testing procedures, many experts believe that a greater number of overdose fatalities involved fentanyl than previously reported.

Heroin dealers are now mixing the drug into the supply in order to create a stronger, more intense high and to increase profits. But, because of this new combination, more and more addicts are suffering from fatal overdoses. Other studies have shown that most opioid users are not even aware that they are ingesting fentanyl, and actively try to stay away from the drug in an effort to avoid these types of overdoses. This goes against the suggestion that addicts will seek out fentanyl in order to get a stronger high. Further research has shown that many drug dealers are getting their hands on fentanyl not from legitimate hospitals or doctors, but from illegal labs that have mimicked the recipe.

“The findings of our study highlight the urgent need to include testing for fentanyl and fentanyl analogs as a part of standard toxicology panels for biological specimens used by substance abuse treatment centers, criminal justice institutions and medical providers. Communities also need to assure that sufficient supplies of naloxone doses are provided to first responders and distributed through community overdose prevention programs to mitigate the effects of opioid overdoses,” explained lead author of the study, Raminta Daniulaityte.

While there are still more long-term studies that need to be conducted on the fentanyl problem, this is a step forward for medical professionals who are looking to educate addicts and the public on the dangers and prevalence of the drug.

opiates and alcohol

Why Opiates and Alcohol are Such a Deadly Combination for Arizona Drug Users

Overdosing From Combining Opiates and Alcohol Is a Real Risk 

Media reports frequently focus on cases of opiate use, with Governor Doug Ducey even declaring a state of emergency due to the sharp rise in opioid overdose among Arizona drug users. However, little attention was given to the dangers of mixing opiates and alcohol until news reports emerged that Cory Monteith’s death was caused by combined drug intoxication from champagne and heroin which shed light on the deadly drug combination of opiates and alcohol. Although under-reported, over 70 percent of opiate-related deaths involve the use of another substance, and alcohol is present in more than 50 percent of opiate fatalities. 

Alcohol Is a Depressant 

Alcohol’s ability to pass the blood-brain barrier allows it direct access to the GABA receptors and neurotransmitters of the central nervous system. These neurotransmitters are responsible for sending messages from the brain to every part of the body, including the limbs, muscles and organs. Alcohol blocks the nerve receptors’ messages, slowing down the central nervous system. As a result, bodily functions are altered. Changes in the body from alcohol consumption are felt and observed through a number of signs and symptoms:

– Altered speech.
– Difficulty walking. 
– Dulled senses.
– Illegible handwriting.
– Impaired hearing.
– Mental confusion.
– Memory lapses. 
– Poor coordination.
– Slow reaction times. 

Drugs That Are Classified As Opiates

Derived from the opium of poppy plants, opiates are a Schedule II substance that is prescribed to physical pain. When used as intended, opiates bind to the body’s opioid receptors, blocking pain signals. Opiates and opioids are two terms that are often used interchangeably. Opioid was a term that once was only used to describe synthetic opioids. However, the term opioid is now used to describe all four categories of opiates, which are the endogenous opioids made by the human body, opium alkaloids like codeine and morphine, semi-synthetic opioids such as oxycodone and heroin and fully synthetic opioids like methadone. 

Opiates Are Also a Depressant 

The human body contains naturally occurring opioid-like neurotransmitters and opioid receptors. While these organic substances send signals that block pain, the body does not make enough of its own opioids to stop severe pain or overdose itself. When someone takes opiate drugs, they easily bind to these receptors because they are similar in chemical structure to the body’s natural opioid neurotransmitters. However, opiate drugs do not act the same way as opioid neurotransmitters, which causes the transmission of abnormal messages throughout the body. Heroin’s impact on the body is dependent on a whole host of factors. These factors include the user’s current state of health, their weight, whether they are male or female. How the person takes opiates, how much opiates he or she takes, how long they have engaged in opiate use, the simultaneous consumption of other drugs or alcohol and their mental health also play a role on how heroin will affect the body. In terms of how opiate drugs interfere with these signals produces a variety of effects: 

– Confusion.
– Constipation.
– Drowsiness.
– Lack of coordination.
– Poor decision making.
– Sedation.
– Shallow breathing. 

The Effects of Combining Opiates and Alcohol

Since opiates and alcohol are both considered to be depressants, they can be a deadly drug combination when taken together. When someone takes an opiate and drinks alcohol, the opiate will increase the body’s absorption rate of the alcohol, increasing the likelihood of alcohol poisoning. Additionally, this mixture slows down brain functioning and subsequently, the body’s circulatory and respiratory systems. Signs and symptoms of an opiate-alcohol overdose include drowsiness, dizziness and slowed heart rate and breathing rate. Their heart can even stop beating. The longer someone engages in this type of polydrug use, they increase their chances of a fatal overdose

Why Arizona Drug Users Are Taking Opiate-Alcohol Cocktails

With such a high risk of death from consuming opiates and alcohol, it is surprising that the number of fatalities is so high. Often, people turn to this type of substance use to relax as opiates’ ability to cause the feeling of euphoria lasts longer when this drug is combined with alcohol. Other people choose to take both of these substances at the same time as an escape because the combo either makes them fall asleep for a long period of time or gives them a more intense high than taking opiates alone. 

This Dangerous Trend Is Running Rampant Among Youth

The results of 2012 study by McCabe and other researchers indicate that a significant portion of young people are mixing opiates with other substances, including opiates. Approximately 1 of 8 teenagers in high school have used opiates with for recreational purposes, and 70 percent of these teens are combining opiates with one or more substances. Although they are using opiates in conjunction with amphetamines, tranquilizers, marijuana and cocaine, 52.1 percent of teenagers from this study are also combining opiates with alcohol. 

More People Are Turning to Heroin 

Due to the alarming rate of prescription opioid abuse, authorities in Arizona and the rest of the country are taking a hardline approach to curbing the distribution of these medications. Therefore, people who are dependent or addicted to opiates are using heroin. Estimates by the National Survey on Drug Use and Health show that almost 700,000 people in America are using heroin, and approximately 170,000 people tried heroin for the first time in 2012. Looking at the rates from the 1960s to the 1970s when heroin reached its height of popularity, current heroin-use rates are on reaching the same level. Heroin users state that street heroin is easier to access that legitimate prescriptions and cheaper to buy than illicit prescription painkillers. 

addiction treatment centers

Things to Compare Among Residential Treatment Centers in Arizona

The Best Care Possible – A Comparison Among Rehab Centers In Arizona

Don’t make the mistake of believing that all residential treatment centers in Arizona are created equally. Your health and well being should be your primary concern. That means finding the best possible rehab in the state for your care. There are quite a few different rehab treatment centers in Arizona. It’s up to you to do the research and find the best one

How Do You Know Which Is Best?

You’ll notice that a lot of rehab centers look great on the surface. They might have well-designed websites and make plenty of bold claims. However, those are very minor considerations in the grand scheme of things. There are actually many different qualities you must compare among the inpatient treatment centers in Arizona. By comparing these qualities you can find the center that is best suited for you.

Compare Their Histories.

The past is always a great place to start your comparison. It’s safe to assume that most businesses will perform in the future the same as they have in the past. Therefore, if the rehab already has a seedy reputation for not helping its patients, then it’s a bad place to seek recovery. Every treatment center will have its own history and it’s not uncommon for there to be a slight blemish. This is especially true of the reviews you may find online.

Comparing Online Reviews.

Reviews are a very specific part of the treatment’s history that you should consider early on. If you are considering two or more rehab centers, then you should carefully compare as many reviews for the two as you can find. However, finding one or two negative reviews online isn’t a reason to completely shun a particular facility. Some people will have a bad experience no matter what. And, in some cases, people are paid to write false negative reviews. On the contrary, if a significant number of reviews are negative, then it’s probably best to avoid that particular facility.

Comparing Testimonials Is Similar.

You can think of testimonials as reviews that are always positive. Why bother comparing them if you know they are going to be positive? It’s important to compare the testimonials of residential treatment centers in Arizona because they provide you with a snapshot of a patient’s recovery. They are often very uplifting and encouraging. Testimonials let you know what is possible at a certain facility. Almost every rehab center will have testimonials available on their website. Compare all that you can find once you’ve moved on from reading reviews. It’s always a positive sign if you can find testimonials that closely relate to your own personal story and struggles.

Compare Their Track Record Of Success.

Perhaps the most important component of their history to consider is their track record of success. Does only 1 out of every 100 patients actually make a change? Some inpatient treatment centers in Arizona are little more than than vacation spots for people who have no real interest in changing. Those rehab centers don’t foster real growth within their patients and don’t push them to make the change. Obviously, that’s not what you are looking for if you’re interested in honestly kicking your bad habits or helping someone else kick theirs.

Compare The Programs They Offer At Present

Comparing the past is important, but so is comparing what they offer at the present. A prime example of this is comparing the various programs and services that they offer. Some facilities might only offer basic detoxification and release programs. Others will include a variety of different services that may better suit your needs. Programs might include:

– Alcohol and drug detoxification.

– Outdoor therapy.

– 12 step programs.

Compare Their Referral System.

It’s entirely possible that you will require additional services not offered at any of the residential treatment centers in Arizona that you are interested in. In that case, they will need to refer you to another company for those services. Compare the different referral systems put in place by each of the rehab centers you are considering. Some offer completely free referrals while others will actually try to charge for their recommendations. For example, you may find a treatment center that you really like, but they recommend that you receive a detox, which they do not offer. Ideally, the rehab will recommend a detox facility for free. You know that you can trust the recommendation because you have already put your trust in the rehab. But if they are trying to charge for that referral, then you should be skeptical.

Compare How Their Programs Work.

Five different rehabs may offer alcohol dependency programs with the exact same name, but that doesn’t mean they are actually the same program. The care professionals at the center will have implemented their own techniques and procedures to help you through the recovery process. It’s a good idea to read as much information as you can find about their procedures and how their programs work. You may find that you like everything about a particular rehab except how they hand their recovery process. For example, some rehab treatment centers in Arizona stick to a very strict daily regimen and schedule. Others will offer patients a much greater degree of flexibility and freedom. It’s up to you which you think will work best.

Compare Their Payment Options.

You can never overlook the cost of attending rehab. Surprisingly, some rehab centers don’t even accept insurance. Those are the rehabs that are meant to be more of a vacation than an actual place for recovery. A treatment center may not accept every single kind of insurance, but they should accept most of them. Compare the payment and insurance options of the various rehab centers you are considering before signing any contracts.

Research And Make A Decision.

Getting help is extremely important, but that doesn’t mean you can’t take time to do the research. Compare these many qualities among residential treatment centers in Arizona before making a commitment to get help at any one particular center. You’ll likely find that there is only one facility in the area that can meet all of your needs, has a positive history, accepts most insurances, and offers a variety of unique programs. That’s the treatment center that’s right for you.

Most Abused Drugs in Arizona

The Most Abused Drugs in Arizona and Their Effects

Arizona Sees a Rise in Deaths From the State’s Most Abused Drugs 

Drug use in Arizona has reached alarming numbers. By compiling statistics from the Centers for Disease Control, HealthGrove discovered that 20 out of 100,000 Arizonans are dying from drug poisoning. This makes Arizona the number-two state for fatal drug overdoses in the United States. With a 7 percent hike in overdose deaths from the year prior to this report’s release, it seems these fatalities will continue to rise. Faced with an urgent need to prevent the use of dangerous drugs in Arizona, Governor Doug Ducey created a 30-member Substance Abuse Task Force that will focus on early intervention and increased education. 

The Most Abused Drugs in Arizona 

Researcher James Cunningham from the University of Arizona reviewed multiple sources to create a comprehensive report on drug trends in Maricopa County. During his 2013 analysis, he found that the most abused drugs in Arizona are methamphetamine, heroin, marijuana and cocaine. Treatment and hospital admissions for cocaine use have decreased by 5%, making cocaine the fourth most used illicit drug. However, treatment and admissions numbers have increased significantly for other drugs; 23 percent of treatment cases are related to methamphetamine, 19 percent of cases are due to heroin and morphine and 17 percent are attributed to marijuana. 

Methamphetamine

Classified as a stimulant, methamphetamine causes the body to release extra dopamine, which leads to the pleasurable effect that users crave. However, elevated levels of dopamine may eventually change the brain’s structure, impairing verbal learning, reducing motor speed and creating permanent emotional and memory problems. Besides euphoria, abnormal wakefulness, convulsions, decreased appetite, hyperthermia, increased respiration and a rapid heartbeat are short-term effects of methamphetamine abuse. Chronic users of methamphetamine will build a tolerance to the drug, needing more of it to achieve the same desired effect. There are also effects from long-term use of this drug:

– Anxiety.
– Confusion.
– Delusions.
– Hallucinations.
– Insomnia.
– Paranoia.
– Violent behavior. 

Heroin

Processed from morphine, heroin is an opioid that is diluted with household substances such as starch, and powdered milk. When heroin reaches the brain, it quickly binds to the brain’s opioid receptors, causing an intense rush of pleasure, flushed skin, a dry mouth and sometimes nausea and itching. Once these effects wear off, users experience drowsiness, a decreased heart rate and shallow breathing. Slowed respiratory function carries the risk of coma, brain damage and even death. Several scientific studies have found that long-term heroin abuse deteriorates the brain’s white matter, affecting how users tolerate stress, control their behavior and make decisions. 

Marijuana

Marijuana is a hallucinogenic plant that contains a psychoactive chemical called delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC. Depending on whether the user smokes or consumes marijuana, the effects are felt within several minutes to 1 hour. These effects vary between users and plant strains, but common effects include heightened senses, an increased appetite, euphoria and a sense of relaxation. On the other end of the spectrum, marijuana users may experience anxiety, paranoia, panic or even acute psychosis. After years of smoking or ingesting marijuana, people may suffer from memory impairment, a decline in cognitive abilities and reduced verbal ability.

Cocaine

By stopping neurotransmitter transporters from reabsorbing dopamine, cocaine creates an accumulation of dopamine. This buildup causes extreme euphoria and pleasure. Since cocaine is a stimulant, users appear hypersensitive to stimuli, talkative and energetic. They may also have dilated pupils, an elevated body temperature and an increased heart rate. Nosebleeds and hoarseness are also two typical problems that occur from cocaine use. Cocaine is one the most dangerous drugs in Arizona because with prolonged abuse, users may experience anxiety, convulsions, irritability, erratic behavior, panic attacks and psychosis. There are more effects that are more severe in nature:

– Cardiac arrest.
– Coma. 
– Heart rhythm disturbances. 
– Seizures.
– Strokes.
– Sudden death.

A False Sense of Security From the Combat Methamphetamine Epidemic Act 

Ten years after the passage of the federal Combat Methamphetamine Epidemic Act of 2005, the Drug Enforcement Agency reported no instances of methamphetamine lab seizure in Arizona. While this statistic looks promising on paper, the 6,400 pounds of methamphetamine seized in 2015 suggest that the threat of rampant methamphetamine abuse is real, especially considering that this amount has increased by a staggering 294 percent in the last 5 years. Since this act limits the number of pseudoephedrine purchase to 9 grams per month, domestic methamphetamine production has sharply declined. Instead, foreign traffickers are supplying most of America’s methamphetamine supply. 

Methamphetamine and Heroin Are Coming in Droves From Mexico

Dangerous drugs in Arizona are transported through the Nogales and San Luis points of entry. Last year, the United States Customs and Border Protection agency made a 387-pound methamphetamine bust in Nogales, which is the largest seizure at this border crossing to date. Statewide, over 1,200 pounds of heroin were confiscated in 2015, which was more than double of the Arizona’s heroin-seizure count from 2013. Doug Coleman of the Phoenix DEA estimates that Mexican cartels are responsible for 90 percent of the methamphetamine flow and 80 percent of the heroin distribution in the United States. However, Mexico’s cocaine distribution has shifted to Europe where the drug nets higher profits since American stimulant users are attracted to the inexpensiveness of methamphetamine in comparison to cocaine. 

Prescription Painkiller Users Are Turning to Heroin 

To combat the misuse of Schedule II hydrocodone and oxycodone prescription painkillers, lawmakers have put prescription writing and filling restrictions on physicians and pharmacists. Now, these medications are more difficult for opioid abusers to obtain. Because prices are not inflated by pharmaceutical companies and heroin is often diluted with dirt-cheap ingredients, heroin is also less costly than opioid medications. Depending on the location, one heroin dose can cost $10 in contrast to $60 or more per opioid pill. Seeing the demand for heroin among opioid users in the United States, many people living in Mexico feel that heroin production is a way out of poverty. Therefore, they are transporting an abundance of heroin to the United States, contributing to the growing volume of drug use in Arizona. 

The Legalization of Medical Marijuana

In 2010, Arizona made medical marijuana legal. As of 2017, the Arizona Department of Health Services reported that approximately 120,000 residents have a medical-marijuana card. However, passing Proposition 203 also paved the way for people to illegally profit from medical marijuana. For instance, Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office raided three houses in 2012 and discovered $20,000 in cash along with 33 pounds of harvested marijuana and 107 marijuana plants. The growers responsible for this operation were giving out fraudulent patient cards and caregiver cards to their customers. Investigators from the MCSO approximated that this sized operation could garner operators $1 million every year. Considering the lucrativeness of illegal medical-marijuana operations, these ventures may lead to a future increase in marijuana abuse.

arizona recovery centers

Top Qualities of Alcohol Treatment Centers in Arizona

What Sets The Best Arizona Recovery Centers Apart?

Anyone who thinks that rehab is a vacation has clearly never been through rehab. The best alcohol treatment centers in Arizona will try to make sure that you’re as comfortable as possible throughout your stay. They will try to surround you with supportive, compassionate, well-trained people, and they’ll make sure that you have plenty of options to stay busy while you go through recovery. However, it’s going to be a lot of hard work. That’s why so many people are hesitant to take that step. It is because recovery is such a big job that the better alcohol rehab centers in Arizona will pull out all the stops to make the process just a bit easier and safer. It’s still a heck of a fight, but it’s just a bit easier with the right people on your side.

What Are You Looking For?

Not every facility is going to be equipped to walk with you through the entire journey of recovery. There are alcohol recovery centers in Arizona that only provide services for those nearing the end of the path. For instance, they might not offer detox. You might be at the start of the journey or closer to the finish line (of recovery at least. We all know that combating alcoholism is a lifelong fight), but along the way you might need one or all of the following forms of support:

It Starts With Detox

Whether the detox is handled in house or through a referral system, this is one of the first steps for most people struggling with alcoholism. Quitting alcohol cold turkey can be dangerous if your body has developed a certain level of dependence on booze. A detox program in a safe environment with trusted professionals can help you to end your chemical dependency without the crash landing.

12 Step Programs Are For Everyone Who Needs Them

You might have heard that 12 steps are kind of a religious thing. Not necessarily. For many, faith in God can be a vital component to recovery. But you can follow a 12 step program as an atheist, a Buddhist, or an agnostic without having to rethink your stance on faith and religion. With a 12 step program you have to hand some control over to a “power greater than yourself.” This is what you’ve already been doing with addiction. You just need to put something healthy in its place, be it God, your family, your career, whatever it is that you believe in and that gives you strength.

Holistic Treatment: Addressing Everything

Essentially holistic treatment is all about addressing the mental, physical and spiritual problems that led you to alcohol in the first place. Alcoholism isn’t like a rash that you can clear up with an ointment. It’s a symptom of something bigger.

Extended Care And Outdoor Therapy

There is also extended care to consider. Some of us need a little more work than others. No two addictions are the same. Simple as that. Likewise, you have outdoor therapy. What’s the point of living in Arizona if you’re going to stay indoors all day? Being a recluse is now way to kick an addiction, so a rehab center that gets you out in the fresh air, in front of the gorgeous mountain vistas now and then, that’s a must if you’re looking for a facility in Arizona.

Is That All There Is To It?

What we’ve laid out above, that’s just a list of services you’re going to find in the pamphlet of any alcohol rehab centers in Arizona worth putting on the “maybe” list. It’s not unheard of for a center to provide all of these services and still have a fairly low success rate. There’s more to it than that. We’re not just talking about an auto garage and the services they offer, we’re talking about a center that you’re going to call home for however long it takes to get well, and we’re talking about people who you’re going to be spending more time with than you may spend with your own family. So there’s quite a bit more to it than checking the above-listed items off on your clipboard. So what else is there?

-The people. This is the big thing. Compassionate, experienced, professional people can make the road to recovery a lot smoother. People who are difficult, who are treating this like any other dayjob, can make the road rockier than it needs to be.

-The location. It’s a good idea to seek recovery close to home. Familiar settings can help to provide some comfort as you settle into your new environment. A setting that is pleasant and inviting can go a long way, as well.

-A good success rate. No recovery center has a 100% success rate. They’re here to help, but success comes down to the individual, and some individuals are better than others at sticking to their recovery.

How Do You Know?

The only way to really find the best rehab center is to do your research and make a few calls. If you get us on the phone or send us an email, we’ll be happy to answer any questions you might have on our facility, our staff, and the services we offer. If you decide that we’re the right choice for your recovery, we’ll gladly help you through every step of the way. If you wind up settling on a different facility, we’ll wish you luck all the same. This is your journey to take, it’s your recovery, and it’s your health we’re talking about. We’d love to be the people who help you towards recovery, but you have to pursue whatever path it is that you feel is right, whatever path you feel is going to help you to get where you’re going.

dual diagnosis treatment centers

Dual Diagnosis Treatment Centers Are The Ideal Solution When Rehab Isn’t Enough

Dual Diagnosis Treatment Centers Are The Ideal Solution When Rehab Isn’t Enough

Many people who suffer from drug or alcohol addictions also suffer from some sort of mental illness. The two aren’t necessarily related, but one can often worsen the other. For example, a person may start drinking to deal with the symptoms of a particular mental issue. This drinking causes the symptoms of the mental condition to become even worse, which leads to more drinking. It’s a very destructive cycle and many people don’t even know that it’s happening.

Is There A Solution?

It might seem like going to rehab for a couple of months would solve the problem, but rehab alone often isn’t enough. This is especially true when the person drinks excessively or abuses drugs because of something related specifically to their mental issue. The only reliable solution is to treat the substance abuse and the mental illness at the same time. That is where dual diagnosis treatment centers in Arizona come into play.

What Is Dual Diagnosis In Arizona?

A dual diagnosis center is a facility that treats mental health and alcohol addictions (or drug addictions) at the same time. These two services have traditionally been split between different facilities. The problem with that approach is that the person might leave rehab and then begin abusing drugs again before their mental condition can be treated. Prior to the rise of dual diagnosis treatment centers in Arizona, it was nearly impossible for a patient to have their mental health and drugs addiction treated at the same time.

The Benefits Are Obvious.

A dual diagnosis center is an ideal solution if a patient suffers from a mental condition and a substance abuse problem. As a matter of fact, it may be the only way that the person can ever achieve a full and lasting recovery. The approach to recovery in these treatment centers is somewhat different than what you would expect from a traditional rehab center. There’s a lot more going on behind the scenes than just the basic twelve steps. The patient’s mental and emotional needs are very carefully considered, addressed, and treated.

A Step Above The 12 Steps.

There’s no denying that the 12 steps have helped millions of people deal with their addictions. However, the steps were created in the 1930’s and there was very little understanding of complex psychological problems at the time. The underlying science behind addiction and how it related to mental conditions were not fully understood. Therefore, the 12 steps do little, if anything, to address the psychological issues that can result in a drug dependency. A dual diagnosis center can still implement the 12 steps or a variation of them, but it does so with the aid of psychological and pharmaceutical tools as well.

Custom Recovery Programs Benefit Patients.

Dual diagnosis treatment centers in Arizona work with patients in all states of mental health and alcohol addiction. They must create extremely personalized recovery programs for each and every patient. In a way, this makes a dual diagnosis program more ideal than a traditional rehab even for a patient without a mental condition. Because every patient who stays at a dual diagnosis center is receiving a treatment plan that was designed specifically for them.

The Follow Through Makes A Differences

It’s not uncommon for a rehab center to check a patient in and then have very little to do with them as they recover. Dual diagnosis in Arizona works very differently. Not only is the recovery program designed specifically for each individual patient, but the professionals who work at the recovery center spend a lot of time tracking the recovery and adjusting the program as needed. If something isn’t working, then they take notice and they make the necessary changes. 

Recovery Programs Built Around Proven Treatments.

The 12 steps aren’t the only way to treat the problems of an alcohol addict. There are multiple forms of therapy that have been tailored to address the underlying issues with addiction. One such line of therapy is known as cognitive behavioral therapy(CBT). This focuses on finding the habits that the addict associated with drinking and then rewiring how the brain thinks of those habits. It’s said that every addict has certain triggers that can lead to cravings. CBT can help identify these triggers and then return them to normal actions that are not associated with drugs or alcohol at all.

Helping Patients Understand Themselves.

Many patients who received a dual diagnosis had no idea they were suffering from a mental illness. That means that they likely have very little information regarding their specific condition, its symptoms, or how it can be influenced by drinking. Spending time at dual diagnosis treatment centers in Arizona serves as a learning experience for the patient. They learn about their specific condition and the various symptoms it has. For example, they may have suffered from anxiety or have serious panic attacks without actually knowing what was happening. After experiencing dual diagnosis in Arizona they have a full understanding of these symptoms and know how to react the next time they occur.

Getting The Right Medications.

Mental health and drugs do not work well together. When a patient who deals with both of these problems visits a traditional rehab they may be prescribed more medications to help overcome the addiction. Unfortunately, those medications may not work well with their mental condition. By visiting a dual diagnosis center they have the opportunity to receive the right medications. The doctors and therapists know more about the patient and can choose prescription drugs that are designed specifically for their conditions. That means the medications and the treatment are far more likely to succeed.

It’s The Ideal Solution.

If someone suffers from a mental condition and an addiction to drugs or alcohol, then dual diagnosis in Arizona is the ideal solution. It’s the only way they can receive the absolute best care possible. Dual diagnosis centers will implement a combination of recovery programs, therapy sessions, and medications that are all designed specifically for each individual patient.

If you, or someone you love has received addiction treatment that didn’t properly equip them in recovery, it’s possible that they need dual diagnosis treatment. For information or to speak with a counselor, please give us a call at Desert Cove Recovery today.

Drug Abuse Linked to Financial Problems

Unemployment can be a very unstable, scary time for people. Without the promise of work, many fall into a depression that is difficult to get out of. And now a new study shows that illicit drug use is also more common for people who are unemployed. Despite not having income, drugs are still being purchased and used at higher rates than people who have steady work.

A new study released by researchers in the Netherlands shows that they psychological stress of not having a job is more powerful than reduced or no income, and the stress is what causes people to seek out drugs and alcohol. The researchers focused on 17 different types of reports from several different countries. Ten of the reports were composed of information from the American workforce. After reviewing all the data, the team was surprised that the psychological factors were a more powerful motivator for drug use than lack of money was for deterring a person from using drugs. And in extreme cases where money was an issue, many users simply switched their drug of choice to a cheaper alternative, but still maintained their drug-using lifestyle.

“In our literature review, we were particularly interested in the mechanisms that explain the relationship between unemployment and illegal drug use. We found supportive evidence for one of the mechanisms that we hypothesized. It seems that unemployment increases psychological distress and that distress increases illegal drug use,” explained Dr. Gera Nagelhout, the lead author of the study that was published in the International Journal of Drug Policy.

Nagelhout suggests that more funding and research focus on the psychological effects of unemployment so as to better help those who find themselves without employment. Forging a new path between unemployment and better mental health could be imperative in preventing these people from leading a life of drug use and addiction. As the country continues to struggle with ways to prevent the painkiller and opioid epidemic from claiming more lives, this is one area where more research and understanding is needed.

Immigration Does Not Cause Surge in Drug Abuse or Drug Availability

In light of many heated debates regarding immigration and its impact on the United States, a research group out of University of Wisconsin-Madison conducted a study to determine what, if any, effect immigrants had on the drug problems in this country. After gathering data from the Center for Migration Studies and Pew Research Center, they were able to determine that immigration does not actually effect drug use and drug availability in the United States.

“This is an area where public and political debates have far outpaced the research. And central to this debate is whether undocumented immigration increases drug and alcohol problems, or crime more generally. There are good theoretical reasons to think it could have increased substance abuse problems in recent decades. But the data just doesn’t show it,” commented Professor Michael Light, lead researcher of the study. The results of his research appeared in the American Journal of Public Health.

The researchers were able to come to this conclusion after comparing undocumented immigrants to the four major criteria that is most affected by drug use – drug crimes, driving under the influence arrests, drug overdose deaths and drunken driving fatalities. They found that undocumented immigrants are actually not engaging in these types of activities, and in fact are actually responsible in bringing down the national statistic. When the population is increased by 1% due to undocumented immigrants, there are 22 fewer drug arrests, 42 fewer drunken driving arrests and 0.64 fewer drug overdoses.

One possible explanation for this, it called the “healthy immigrant effect”, where it has been found that undocumented immigrants actually lead healthier lifestyles then people born in the United States.

Regardless of why undocumented immigrants are using less drugs and committing less crimes than Americans, the point of the study was to dispel some of the most common myths surrounding undocumented immigrants and their connection to illegal drugs. In an effort to better understand the drug problem in this country, it is important to focus on actual problems, rather than perceived problems.