How to Break Vaping Addiction

How to Break Vaping Addiction

How to Quit a Vaping Addiction

Vaping is a relatively new trend so there is not a lot of research on the harmful effects, but lots of research has already revealed evidence and trends that show vaping is a lot more harmful than you may think. It is believed by most to be the healthier alternative to cigarettes, but that doesn’t make them healthy.

Some authorities have given statements on shortcomings of vaping as detailed below:

  • According to the Center for Environmental Medicine at UNC, vapes can modify the immune system’s response by suppressing immune genes, even more so than normal cigarettes (1)
  • European Society for Cardiology has said that a typical vaping session can cause as much damage to the heart’s main artery as smoking a pack of cigarettes (2)
  • According to Charalambos Vlachopoulos of Athens Medical School and other scientists, vaping may multiply your risk of dying from causes such as heart disease (3)
  • Some respiratory therapists believe a long term effect of vaping is incurable pneumonia

The components of the e-cigarette and ingredients of e-juice are a recipe for disaster. Vape enthusiasts refer to the nicotine, an addictive substance in cigarettes, in vape as e-cigarette juice. It is known to have numerous detrimental effects on the body, including cognitive declines in brain development, a greater risk of heart attack, stroke, type-2 diabetes, harm on reproductive health, and potential birth defects and inhibited fetus development if exposed to nicotine when pregnant.

The harmful effects of nicotine can in fact be magnified in vapes when compared to cigarettes, as cigarettes have 10-15mg of nicotine, while e-juice can have up to 72mg of nicotine. Another harmful ingredient in e-juice is propylene glycol, a potentially toxic chemical that vaporizes until it degrades into formaldehyde, a potentially carcinogenic chemical that can irritate the eyes and respiratory system. The batteries in vapes have also malfunctioned and exploded; according to the US Fire Administration, most e-cigarette explosions happen when the vape malfunctions during charging.

People vape for a multitude of reasons, some do it as an alternative to smoking since they view it as healthier. Others use it as a form a therapy. And still others vape because they enjoy doing tricks and being part of a community of other vapers. Whatever the reason, though, you may want to quit smoking to avoid the negative effects detailed above. Here you will find different methods and tips for quitting vaping.

Understand Your Addiction

Whatever your method of quitting vaping, it is important to identify the reason why you vape in order to make a smoother transition out of vaping. Some people vape because of a nicotine dependency. Vaping can provide higher, more efficient levels of nicotine deliver than other methods and people grow dependency. Some people vape because they enjoy the flavor of e-juice or of doing tricks with the vape. Many have become addicted to vaping because of the process and the familiarity of it. Triggers are things that a person associates with the habit of vaping, and that prompt people to vape. These triggers may be a certain time of day, or seeing vaping equipment. Whatever they are, you should be aware of your triggers in order to consciously avoid them and quit more smoothly.

Different Methods to Try

1. Cold Turkey Method

One common method of quitting vaping is the Cold Turkey Method. This is when you quit vaping with “not even a drag method”, meaning you don’t ever succumb to smoking once you decide to stop, not even to smoke a bit when offered it by other people. You must set a date in the beginning to quit cold turkey and stick to it. You may feel more symptoms of withdrawal with this method. It is particularly important to get the support of your friends and family to hold you accountable for vaping and encourage you to push through symptoms and cravings.

2. Reductionary Method

Another method is called the Reductionary Method, where you slowly reduce the amount of nicotine you intake in your vape over time. This is a more flexible method; you can reduce the amount of nicotine at a rate that works for you. Remember that reducing the nicotine level too fast is more likely to cause a relapse because of the withdrawal symptoms. It helps to find vape juice that is available in increments of nicotine, from your current level all the way down to zero. It is also important to have support from friends and family and to make sure you’re reducing your nicotine at a suitable pace, not too slow and not too fast.

3. Nicotine Replacement Therapy

Nicotine replacement therapy is when you intake other nicotine products to help deal with nicotine cravings and withdrawal. These methods include nicotine patches, mouth spray, and gum. They help to keep the hands and mouth occupied. Government agencies regulate nicotine gum; remember it is not a cure-all; it is essentially replacing a bad thing with a slightly less bad thing. Some users have experienced sickness from nicotine gum or still feel the urge to continue vaping. However, many users have found nicotine replacement therapy to be an effective option to deal with cravings and withdrawal. (4)

4. Natural Methods

If none of the above work for you, you can try natural methods of easing off vaping, meaning natural and non-addictive substances that can help curb your addiction. Since vaping is a relatively new activity, there are not a lot of substances specifically targeted at it. However, many solutions that are meant to curb smoking can also help quit vaping. One such solution is called Smoke Deter—they are a brand that makes a solution to ease withdrawal symptoms and lessen the urge to vape.

More Tip and Tricks

  • Exercise can help to ease nicotine cravings by prompting the brain to produce anti-craving chemicals
  • Meditation can decrease stress, anxiety, pain, and insomnia—things that quitting vaping may cause.
  • Join programs, and support groups to find others in your position and to help deal with a nicotine addiction
  • Replace the urge to vape with something else, such as sipping water, to keep you occupied
  • Change your routines; for example, wash dishes when you normally smoke
  • Change your diet—some foods, such as meat, make smoking seem more desirable while others, such as cheese and fruit, make smoking seem less desirable
  • Get a flavor of e-juice that you do not like if your plan to quit vaping is gradual, over time
  • Spend the money that you would have spent to fund your vaping addiction on other things so you can see tangible benefits of what quitting your addiction can do

Choose the method that works best for you and follow the tips to losing your vaping addiction. Best of luck!

How to Break Tobacco Chewing Addiction

How to Break Tobacco Chewing Addiction

How to Quit Dipping Tobacco

 

Tobacco is the most important cash crop in American farming as it was the first crop grown for money and is native to the North and South American continents. It has played a long history in the American country because aside from cultivating the plant, it is also smoked in pipes for medicinal and ceremonial purposes.

 

In early history, Christopher Columbus brought a few tobacco leaves and seeds with him in Europe, but during the early times, most Europeans didn’t seem to be that interested in its taste. Only in the mid 15th and 16th century, when European explorer, Jean Nicot de Villemain, for whom nicotine was coined sent tobacco and seeds to Paris from Brazil and was able to popularize medicinal uses.

Nicot sent powdered tobacco to Queen Catherine de Medici of France saying that it can treat her migraines, the queen tried it and said that it was effective. Later on, tobacco was made known to Portugal, Spain, England. (1)

Until in 1828, German Doctor Wilhelm Heinrich Posselt and Chemist Karl Ludwig Reinman, made the first isolation of nicotine from tobacco plant and stated that it was poisonous. Several studies have been made after that and in 1964, the Surgeon General of US, which is the chief doctor of the country, made a report about the dangers of cigarette smoking to human’s health.

Reports tackled on how nicotine and tar, which is the main component of tobacco, can cause lung cancer. That’s why in 1965, Cigarette Labelling Advertising Act has been passed by the US Congress. Each cigarette must have a warning on each pack stating that cigarette smoking may be hazardous to one’s health. (2)

Why is Tobacco Addictive?

Tobacco contains nicotine, a nitrogen-containing chemical. Nicotiana tabacum, the type of nicotine found in tobacco plants. Nicotine is a very addictive substance that can change the way you think and act. Nicotine molecule is shaped like acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter which is responsible for a lot of functions in the brain such as muscle movement, breathing, heart rate, learning, and memory.

Also, acetylcholine caused the release of hormones in the body that can affect one’s mood, appetite, memory, and more. When nicotine gets into the brain it attaches to acetylcholine receptors and imitates the actions of acetylcholine.

Furthermore, scientists found out that nicotine boosts the levels of a neurotransmitter called dopamine in some parts of the brain that induce the feeling of pleasure and reward in the body. Dopamine is the same neurotransmitter that is involved with other drugs addiction like cocaine and heroin. To that, this explains why some people find it hard to quit smoking. (3)

Read here to see the Top 10 Common Addictions like tobacco.

Effects of tobacco in the body

No matter how you use it, tobacco is dangerous to human’s health. There are no safe components in any tobacco products, from acetone and tar to nicotine and carbon monoxide, the substances you inhale can harmfully affect your whole body.

  • Central Nervous System

Nicotine reaches your brain in just a split second and will make you feel more revitalized for a while. But as that effect fades away, you will eventually feel tired and crave more. Nicotine is eminently habit-forming. Physical withdrawal from nicotine can compromise your cognitive functions and can make you feel anxious, irritated, and depressed.

  • Respiratory System

When you inhale smoke from tobacco, you’re also taking in substances that can damage your lungs. Over time, this damage will lead to different kinds of problem respiratory problems such as emphysema, chronic bronchitis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and lung cancer.

In the contrary, withdrawal from tobacco can cause temporary congestion and respiratory discomfort as your lungs and airways begin to heal from the damages that tobacco has incurred.

  • Cardiovascular System

Smoking damages your whole cardiovascular system as it causes blood vessels to tighten, which restricts the easy flow of blood in your system. During the course of time, the ongoing narrowing, along with deterioration to the blood vessels, raises blood pressure, weakens blood vessel walls, increased blood clots, and increases your risk of stroke.

  • Integumentary System

Chemicals in tobacco smoke can change the structure of your skin. A recent study has shown that smoking tobacco dramatically increases the risk of skin cancer.

Also, your fingernails and toenails aren’t immune from the effects of smoking. Smoking increases the development of fungal nail infections. Lastly, you hair air is also affected by nicotine as it increases hair loss, balding, and graying.

  • Digestive System

Smoking increases the risk of developing mouth, throat, larynx, and esophagus cancer. Smokers also have higher rates of pancreatic cancer.

  • Sexuality and Reproductive System

Nicotine has bad effects on the blood flow in the genital areas of both men and women. For men, this can lower down sexual performance. While for women, this can result in sexual dissatisfaction by weakening the lubrication and the ability to achieve orgasm. In addition, smoking may also lower sex hormone levels in both men and women. This can possibly lead to decreased sexual arousal. (4)

Quitting Tobacco

The use of any tobacco product has both short-term and long-term effects on your health and overall well-being. So here’s how you can quit your tobacco habits. (5)

  • Cold Turkey and Gradual Withdrawal

A lot of people quit cold turkey – they stop totally, all of a sudden, with no other remedy or nicotine replacement.

While some start by using less tobacco for a few weeks before they quit as a means of gradual withdrawal. In this way, one slowly decrease the volume of nicotine in their body to reduce the risk of having withdrawal symptoms.

  • Other Nicotine Approved Products

The FDA has approved some nicotine containing products. Some manufacturers have added it to drinks, lollipops, straws, and lip balms and marketed as quit tools. However, only a few of them have actually helped people quit smoking. They also pose a possible risk for children if these products are not properly labeled, carefully stored, and safely disposed of.

  • Home Remedies and Non-Tobacco Options

Professionals have recommended natural products like tea, cloves, and min to help people quit using tobacco. Some people are also advised to consume cayenne pepper or coffee ground pouches. Other addiction experts also suggest the use of herbs or dietary supplements to help quit tobacco addiction. The FDA has allowed the sale of herbs used as dietary supplements to be sold without their prior approval. This means that the manufacturers don’t have to prove or claim that they work, or even that they’re safe.

While you are quitting, you may experience longing for smokeless tobacco every once and awhile. Many people are having withdrawal symptoms when they try to quit smoking or chewing tobacco. These symptoms are usually worst and strongest the first week after you finally decided to quit. Quitting is very difficult and takes a lot of effort but whatever you do, DON’T GIVE UP! You are still working on becoming a smokeless tobacco non-user. It can in many cases take few attempts before you can fully quit, but it is definitely worth it.

How to Break Adderall Addiction

How to Break Adderall Addiction

How to Quit Adderall

Adderall is a central nervous system stimulant medicine authorized for patients with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or narcolepsy. This drug is a combination of the generic drugs amphetamine and dextroamphetamine. (1)

Nonetheless, individuals who consume excessive doses of Adderall for an extended duration of time run the threat of forming physically dependent on the drug. When this happens, a tolerance builds up. Once this takes place, the individual has to increase his or her intake and at the same time increase the frequency of intakes as well to get the same effects as before.

How Adderall Works?

 

In general, Adderall or Amphetamine salts act in the body by influencing the brain and nervous system. At its most basic level, it performs by intensifying the number of dopamine and norepinephrine in the brain. This is why people who consume Adderall for not having a medical basis may observe the euphoric effect and go after an Adderall-high can get you dependent to Amphetamines.

In spite of that, therapeutic utilization of this drug hardly evolves into addiction. Adderall also working parts in people with immoderate sleepiness, also called narcolepsy in medical term, by stimulating the central nervous system. In people with ADHD, it has a contradicting effect, Adderall assists them to concentrate and stay calm. An individual who uses Adderall to attend to ADHD will not get high from their medication.

How Quick Adderall Function Takes Effect?

Adderall set foot to its peak strength in the blood in 1-2 hours. At that point, it has brought its full effect into the body. At times, people will pulverize the tablet and snort the crushed powder to get more rapid effects. The drug remains in the body for a couple of days, with a half-life amounting to 10-11 hours approximately. Snorting it can lead to increased detrimental effects such as overdose or worst, sudden death. (2)

Warnings

Adderall is not risk-free for everyone. You should not take it if you have certain health iss

ues like the following:

  • heart disease
  • high blood pressure
  • hardening of the arteries
  • hyperthyroidism
  • glaucoma

In addition, you are not also allowed to take this drug if you’re pregnant. Consuming it during pregnancy can cause premature birth or low birth weight. Infants born to mothers who are taking Adderall may go through Adderall crash, as well.

Lastly, it may also cause certain reactions with other medications. You should tell your doctor about all medication and over-the-counter drugs and even the supplements you take. Never take more than what is prescribed and never take it without a prescription.

Side Effects of Taking Adderall Without Prescription

Most of the time, an individual will develop a physical dependence on Adderall after taking amphetamine and dextroamphetamine for about 2-3 weeks on a daily basis. Putting a sudden end to Adderall can result in a number of critical withdrawal effects, as your brain responds to the lack of stimulation which can include the following:

  • atypical lack of energy
  • anhedonia (the inability to feel pleasure)
  • fatigue
  • depression
  • insomnia
  • waves of intense craving

Withdrawal effects may be worsened if you’ have been using Adderall for a long period of time. (3)

Effects When Stopping Adderall

When you have been using Adderall in high doses or for a long duration, the body becomes handed-down to operate with it in your system. In order to recompense for the stimulant properties of amphetamine and dextroamphetamine, your brain is slowing down some of your body’s processes in order to support homeostasis. As result, when you stop taking in the drug, your brain will still be operating in its regulated form and you will be experiencing a variety of withdrawal symptoms as your brain restores to its usual operation.

Symptoms of Withdrawal

Contradictory, the symptoms of withdrawal from Adderall are basically the opposite of the drug’s effects. While Adderall improves concentration, euphoria, and energy, the crash that follows after stopping the intake of the drug consequences in a reversal of these effects. As a result, people who have a higher tolerance for Adderall have a more critical withdrawal. (4)

Usual withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Depression
  • Irritability
  • Headaches
  • Oversleeping
  • Insomnia
  • Increased appetite
  • Fatigue
  • Nightmares
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Achiness
  • Anxiety
  • Suicidal thoughts

Quitting Adderall

Trying to stop the use of this drug on your own is not easy as pie. Many types of withdrawal symptoms can take place, and some of these symptoms can be threatening if not treated properly.

The following are some treatment options for Adderall addiction

1. Inpatient/Residential Rehab

Inpatient/Residential Rehab can be beneficial for anyone with an Adderall addiction. Here, you will be able to detoxify yourself from the drug as you work closely with a therapist and other medical professionals. Inpatient therapy may also be helpful for those with co-occurring mental health problems – such as depression, delusion or anxiety – or those abusing other drugs in addition to Adderall. But take note, inpatient rehab may cost a lot.

Click here to know more about inpatient rehabilitation centers.

2. Outpatient Rehab

Outpatient rehab renders many of the similar services as the inpatient rehab, like having a group and individual counseling. However, if you’re under an outpatient program, you’ll visit the medical center for only a certain times during the week, instead of lodging at the facility for a couple of days or months.

It can be a cheaper alternative for patients since it won’t require them to pay for board and lodging fees. They can also avoid being traumatized by the experience or idea of being confined in a rehab facility.

3. Group Counseling

Group counseling can bring forth peer assistance for recuperation, lessen the quarantine that addicted persons are facing in, come up with the structure that is time and again needed by someone who is grappling with addiction and get role models from those past users who have been recovered themselves from learning how to develop their surviving skills.

4. Individual Therapy

Individual therapy is usually happening weekly and may be integrated with group therapy. It can be a key element of both inpatient and outpatient programs. As per the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), independent therapy for substance abuse treatment usually involves approaches such as cognitive behavioral therapy or CBT, motivational interviewing or motivational enhancement therapy, and contingency management.

5. 12-step programs

The 12 step program is a set of guidelines, or “steps” that have been published by Alcoholic Anonymous. It aims to guide alcoholics on how hey can recover from their addiction. As time went by, the same program is now applied y some people to get over other types of addictions.

Some people find healing through 12-step meetings. But in many cases, it may be favorable to first have a medical examination and engage in a more medically operated form of therapeutics. Twelve-step programs are an intrinsic part of aftercare following any type of treatment – delivering ongoing and persistent assistance to help you maintain abstinence.

In conclusion, self-help is a very important way to stay off addictive drugs and to continue a sober life for the long-term. However, it is still recommended that we consult health professionals in anything related to our physical and psychological health. Drug addiction may have ruined your life in the past, but always have the power to change our live for the better.

How to Break Suboxone Addiction

How to Break Suboxone Addiction

How to Quit Suboxone

Suboxone is a combination of buprenorphine and naloxone is an opioid medication that is prescribed to help patients withdraw from or recover from opioid addiction such as heroin, morphine, and oxycodone. (1)

By mildly duplicating the out-turn of opioid drugs, Suboxone decreases withdrawal symptoms from these drugs and allow users to recuperate at a moderate pace. Nevertheless, some users, even those with prescriptions, may end up abusing suboxne itself.

What is Suboxone?

Suboxone is a combination opioid agonist-antagonist utilized to give remedy to opioid dependency. It is a pharmaceutical combination of two active ingredients: buprenorphine which is the opioid agonist and naloxone the opioid antagonist.

The buprenorphine mildly replicates the reaction of opioid drugs. Buprenorphine alone is typically prescribed to relieve pain. On the other hand, Naloxone, blocks the effect of opioid drugs. Naloxone alone helps in immediately ceasing the effects of opioids in overdose cases. (2)

While Suboxone can be a functional medication to support rehabilitation from opiate dependence, it is often a drug that must be consumed for long periods of time after the user has ended taking other habit-forming opioids. Regardless of Suboxone’s effectivity, Suboxone can also cause addiction. As a one-sided opioid agonist, Suboxone creates almost identical withdrawal effects to other opioids if it is quit “cold turkey.”

You can read here how Suboxone is used to fight opiate addiction.

Physical Dependence vs. Addiction

Notwithstanding the fact that drug dependence and drug addiction may coexist in the very same individual concurrently, these two circumstances do have little differentiation.

Physical dependence is a foreseeable result of consuming a painkiller that your body adapts to and, in the long run, comes to depend on. Further on the forming of physiologic dependence, however, addiction also calls for a coercion to continuously obtain and use the drug.

Regardless, whether you’re physically leaning on the drug or actively in the habit of using, discontinuing Suboxone all of a sudden may out-turn in the appearance of withdrawal symptoms and set off cravings that may lead to relapse or even a possible overdose.

Withdrawal Symptoms

Withdrawal from Suboxone may include the following effects:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Body pains
  • Insomnia
  • Drowsiness
  • Dyspepsia
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Irritability
  • Cravings
  • Chills
  • Sweating
  • Headache
  • Poor concentration
  • Elevated heart rate and blood pressure

These indications may differ in extremity and time span, depending on how long users have been taking Suboxone, as well as the dosage.

Withdrawal Timeline

Indications are the worst things that can happen in the first 72 hours of Suboxone withdrawal. In the first week after stopping from Suboxone intake, symptoms normally alleviates to common aches and pains in the body, as well as insomnia and mood swings.

Subsequent to the second week, depression is the next substantial symptom. Then, after a month, users most probably will still be experiencing extreme cravings and depression. This is the most crucial time after stopping Suboxone use, as users have a higher probability of relapse.

While these withdrawal indication may be painful, they are hardly lethal. A more comfortable experience as you undergo withdrawal from Suboxone may be obtained from professional opioid detoxification programs that can help you gradually reduce the level of Suboxone in your system. These programs also provide helpful methods for preventing drug relapse.(3)

Suboxone Addiction Treatment

1. Inpatient Treatment

Inpatient treatment may last from a couple of days to a few weeks. The duration of stay may be depending on many factors, which includes the user’s medical situation and if he or she is addicted to other substances. Inpatient treatment provides medical guidance for detoxification or other health concerns. Additionally, they give individual and group counseling and help with follow-up care.However, inpatient treatment may be really expensive.

2. Outpatient Treatment

Outpatient Treatment may be a user’s only possible remedy for Suboxone dependency or may take place after inpatient treatment to help the user continuously work on recovery and keep a drug-free lifestyle. It includes a group of counseling, but it may include one-on-one counseling too.

3. Consult your Doctor

If your doctor prescribed Suboxone, don’t stop taking it without consulting your doctor first. Your physician will guide you in setting up a plan to carefully win your body off the drug. Your doctor can recommend other medications to help treat your withdrawal symptoms as you start doing the process.

4. Group Counseling

Group counseling comes up with a number of advantages to people recuperating from Suboxone enslavement. This includes peer assistance, reduction of separation, the golden opportunity to witness the improvement of others, the possibility of hearing the experiences of other people, and having a safe surrounding where they can develop and improve social skills.

5. Individual Counseling

Individual counseling, on the other hand, is a treatment used on longer-basis to help the recovering user to keep up a drug-free way of life.

6. Start Taking DL-Phenylalanine (DLPA)

DLPA is a supplement that merges D- and L- forms of amino acid phenylalanine. DLPA is a supplement for opiate recovery for the following reasons:

  • It boosts endorphin which act the body’s painkiller
  • Boost dopamine and norepinephrine which are the two critical neurotransmitters that regulate one’s mood and behavior
  • Increases energy and mental focus
  • Combats fatigue

Surviving the Withdrawal Symptoms

While there is no guaranteed way to prevent the symptoms of withdrawal or to make them less physically painful, there is a wide variety of coping plan of action to deal with the pressure and stress of withdrawal. (4)

1. Physical Activity

It doesn’t mean that individual must go to the gym but it can be plainly taking a pleasurable walk in the evening or jogging in the morning. Having a routine exercise program is immensely useful for coping with stress and physical health.

2. Social Activity

Reigniting your relationship with close family and friends is also an effective way to manage the stress of withdrawal.

3. Relaxation Time and Hobbies

Finding time to loosen up in the halfway through everyday life can be challenging, but it is definitely essential for continuing recuperation.

4. Adapting to the Situation

Acknowledge that withdrawal is part of the process of getting better. Embracing a more optimistic outlook on the recovery process could help you fight anxiety and depression with feelings of satisfaction.

The solution to successfully put an end to Suboxone addiction is getting the appropriate help. Don’t go cold turkey and don’t try to do it on your own. Take an upper hand of the medical expertise and assistance that’s accessible. You’ll be less miserable with the withdrawal symptoms and you’ll be more likely to succeed in your effort to quit.

How to Break Opiates Addiction

How to Break Opiates Addiction

Recovering From Opiates Addiction

Opiates is a group of drugs that are used to treat pain which originated from the opium poppy plant. Manufacturers use opium poppies to synthesize various types of opiates such as such as morphine, codeine, and thebaine. Heroin, on the other hand, is a semi-synthetic opioid obtained from morphine. (1)

Opioids go by a variation of names such as opiates and narcotics. The term opiates is often used for closely related drugs like codeine, morphine, and heroin. While the term opioids is used for the whole class of drugs including synthetic opiates such as oxytocin. Whichever name you use, there is only one thing that you have got to remember, they all have a high potential for abuse, addiction, and overdose.

List of Common Opioids in Growing Strength

  • Codeine
  • Hycodan, Vicodin (hydrocodone)
  • MS Contin Kadian (morphine)
  • Percocet, Oxycontin (oxycodone)
  • Dilaudid (hydromorphone)
  • Duragesic (fentanyl)

 

The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) has estimated that there are about 26.4 million to 36 million people around the world who have been reported to abuse the use of opiates. This opiates drug abuse includes prescription pain relievers and heroin which is an illicit drug. (3)

Mechanism of Opiates Drug

Opiates change the course of action of the brain’s response to pain stimuli by producing a “high” feeling by disturbing the reward and pleasure centers in the brain.

The brain, cardiovascular and respiratory systems, which are all connected to the central nervous system, has opioid receptors that accept opiate drugs. These drugs lead to dozens of physical and emotional effects such as lowered heart rate, respiration, blood pressure, and body temperature. Opiates amplify the pleasant stimuli the person receives.

Frequent consumption or misuse of an opioid drug can literally change how the brain chemistry works, and in effect may lead to physical and psychological vulnerability. The body may not feel normal anymore without the drug’s interaction. Once an individual stops taking in opiates withdrawal symptoms may start right away. (4)

Overdosing on opioids can cause death from cardiac or respiratory arrest. Leeway to the euphoric effects of opioids spreads faster than tolerance to the threatening effects. Hence, a lot of people overdose by fault since they are trying to get excessively high and take too much.

Quitting Opiates Addiction

1. Cold Turkey

Patients could spend a lot of time quitting opioids with cold turkey. The cold turkey method requires the user to suddenly or immediately cease the consumption of the drug.It can be challenging and painful due to a sudden burst of withdrawal symptoms for the patient.

Opiate withdrawal reactions materialize quickly after discontinuation and can be quite uncomfortable as individual may experience agitation, anxiety, increased tearing, insomnia, muscles pain, severe sweating, abdominal cramping, diarrhea, dilation in the pupils, goose bumps, nausea, and vomiting.

Suddenly taking out opiates out of your system and on your own is against many doctors’ recommendations because it’s is really dangerous and you may experience relapse quickly after a sudden opiate discontinuation. (5)

2. Slow Taper Method

Unrushed tapering off opiates can wholly eradicate withdrawal symptoms.Normally, the unhurried you taper, the less agonizing your opiate withdrawal symptoms will be because you will be gradually lowering your dose.

Decreasing your dosage is quite feasible and often even a recommendable way to quit but one must be very disciplined as sometimes slow taper method ends up to be an excuse for an individual to prolong continual drug use.(6)

3. Suboxone – Buprenorphine/Naloxone Method

Users can use suboxone for withdrawing and detoxifying from opioids. Users often combine it with mild opiate called buprenorphine and naloxone to reverse the effects of opiates if taken intravenously.

The patient can take the suboxone drug as a tablet by hold it under their tongue until it fully dissolves. If Suboxone goes into solution and is given intravenously, the naloxone plays the part of reversing the effects of buprenorphine, which blocks the effect of getting high. Buprenorphine, though an opioid drug, it does not lead to a greater high even if you take more, therefore, there is less danger of diversion. (7)

4. Inpatient Rehab

Inpatient rehab requires that a patient stay in a specialized facility. Users can consider this option if they require extensive emotional or physical support though this method is not for everyone as this may be too expensive. Click here to see the cost of various addiction treatment.

Inpatient opioid rehab therapy presents a planned and structured day-to-day activity in a safe territory for the user. Professionals observe in-patients properly. They also have full access to physiological treatments. Rehab centers help patients establish a healthy lifestyle before their release.

5. Outpatient Rehab

Outpatient rehab, on the other hand, allows patients to visit their doctors occasionally, and stay at the comfort of their own homes. It avoids unintended trauma and stigma that the patient may receive in a inpatient facility. However, doctors are not able to properly and rigorously monitor the status of the patient.

This alternative is cheaper than inpatient as there are no costs for hospitalization and boarding. This treatment normally includes visits with doctors and counselors with a specific treatment plan put in place and monitored.

6. Medical Detox Under Light Anesthesia

This method is also known as Waismann Method which allows the patient to sleep through withdrawal and detox period under the presence of light anesthesia.

Doctors will put the patient to sleep in a light coma while doctors monitor and pump medication to the patient that will cleanse and restore their body. The patient will wake up 4-5 days later with no withdrawal symptoms.

Though this may be a perfect solution as the user doesn’t have to undergo withdrawal symptoms anymore, this method is extremely costly. The other drawback is that even though your withdrawal symptoms will be prevented, your addiction and cravings will not disappear instantly. The patient should always follow-up treatments with therapists or counselors. This would cost you a little more money, but hopefully worth it.

7. Ibogaine Narcotic Addiction Recovery Therapy

One can find Ibogaine,an indole alkaloid, in the bark of the root of the African shrub Tabernanthe iboga. It has powerful anti-addictive components, inclusive of high efficacy in drastic opioid withdrawal and addiction. It 100% eliminates opiate withdrawal syndrome in just 24 hours and eradicates the desire for opiates.

This may sound like a magic pill for eliminating opiates withdrawal and addiction, however there are still several studies that need to be done. Researchers claim that the mortality rate is 1 in 300. Bradycardia and lethal combinations with other drugs cause most deaths. (8)

There are many other ways that you can find to help you quit opiates drug addiction. Remember,inding the right treatment that will best fit you will help you succeed in your battle against opiates drug.

How To Break Meth Addiction

How To Break Meth Addiction

How To End Meth Addiction

Methamphetamine is an extremely addictive and an illicit psycho-stimulant drug that is used for its strong ecstatic out-turn which is almost identical to those of cocaine. It has many nicknames like meth, crank, chalk or speed being the most common.

Crystal methamphetamine is a variety of a drug that looks like glass lustrous shavings or bluish-white rocks. Its chemical structure is almost the same with amphetamine; a drug that is used to cure attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and narcolepsy which is a sleeping disorder. (1)

History Of Methamphetamine

Since amphetamine and methamphetamine have a similarity when it comes to their chemical structure, the history of methamphetamine use is intertwined with the history of amphetamine. In 1887, amphetamine was first synthesized.

Followed by the discovery of methamphetamine in 1919. Come 1943, both amphetamine and methamphetamine became widely available to treat different forms of disorder such as depression, narcolepsy, obesity, alcoholism and behavioral syndrome, which known to be as ADHD.

In World War II, both amphetamine and methamphetamine were used by the soldiers to keep themselves alert and awake. After the war, methamphetamine became a famous dietary aid and non-prescription stimulant. Until later on, methamphetamine’s  threatening compulsive properties became widely evident. With the value of misused peaks during the 1960s, the government restricted and regulated methamphetamine as illegal.

Nowadays, people uses meth to make themselves high by inhaling/smoking, swallowing just like a pill, snorting, or injecting the powder that has been dissolved in liquid straight to their veins. In view of the fact that the “high” from the drug starts and fades quickly, people often take countless doses in a “binge and crash” scheme. In some situations, people take methamphetamine in a form of binging known as a “run,”. They give up food and sleep while continuing to take the drug every few hours for up to several days. (2)

Currently, methamphetamine is sometimes being mass-produced in “super labs” that house professional-grade apparatus to create a higher quantity and quality of meth. However, commonly, methamphetamine is processed in “home labs” or “stove tops” where a few people will generate small amounts of the substance. (3)

How Does Methamphetamine Affect the Brain?

The enjoyable reaction of methamphetamine result from the freeing of excessive levels of the neurotransmitter called dopaminebrain chemical involved in motivation, pleasure, reward and motor function. Nonetheless, the drug’s ability to release high levels of dopamine rapidly in reward areas of the brain produces the “rush” (euphoria) or “flash” that many people experience.(4)

What makes methamphetamine dissimilar and more harmful than other stimulants is that a higher percentage of the drug leftovers unchanged in the body. This permits the drug to be lingering in the brain overlong, increasing the stimulant effects.

Short Terms Effects of Meth

Consuming even small quantity of methamphetamine can turn into many of the alike health consequences as those of other stimulants, such as cocaine or amphetamines. These include:

  • growing sleeplessness and physical activity
  • food aversions or decreased in appetite
  • rapid breathing
  • brisk and/or abnormal heartbeat
  • Shoot up in blood pressure and body temperature

Long Terms Effects of Meth

Long-term methamphetamine utilization has many other negative reactions, which includes: (5)

  • drop in weight
  • drastic dental complication (“meth mouth”)
  • extreme tingling or itchiness, which may lead to skin lesion from scratching
  • anxiety and stress
  • confusion and delusion
  • sleeping problems
  • aggressive manners
  • paranoia—extreme and obstructive distrust of others
  • hallucinations—sensations and images that seem factual though they aren’t

Methamphetamine Overdosing

A person can overdose on methamphetamine that may result into more critical or lethal symptoms such as stroke, heart attack, organ problems—such as kidney failure—caused by overheating or even death. (6)

How to Quit Meth

Find your Safe Place

Attempting to break off with meth and going through withdrawal while people around you are using is way too hard. So you better find somewhere to stay where people don’t use.

Build Your Support

While you could do it on your own, it will most likely be easier to go through withdrawal with some support from your family and peers. The people around you needs to be encouraging, accessible and knowledgeable about what you are going through. If they know what is going on then they can help when it gets hard. Support groups like this one in Cambridge City are great examples of such.

Planning your Day Ahead

Succeeding through withdrawal can be uncomplicated if you have a plan ahead of how are you going to spend your time on a day to day basis. While at first, you may feel like doing nothing at all, after a few days you will feel more active and it’s good to have alternatives about what to do with that energy. You can deal with mood swings and cravings better with designed regimens.

Medication

While some kind of medications can lessen the seriousness of some withdrawal manifestation, not a thing will stop the indications wholly. There is no ‘magic pill’ or even mixing of medications that are especially functional in methamphetamine withdrawal.

If depression or anxiety come into view during withdrawal medication might help you deal with the worst of these scenarios, mostly if they don’t go away over time. Some alternative or natural method of healing can help with some withdrawal symptoms. (7)

Five Stages of Recovery from Crystal Meth

Stage 1: Withdrawal (Days 0 – 15)

Withdrawal typically lasts from 1 to 2 weeks, but it can last up to 4 weeks or even longer.  Moreover,  known as the “sleep, eat, and drink” stage, your body and brain are in restoration overdrive. You have address a lot of side effects of meth that you have to address before you can move forward. 

Stage 2: The Honeymoon (Days 16 – 45)

A lot of people will relapse on the Honeymoon stage because of overconfidence that they have already survived their meth addiction. But not you. You are prepared. You understand this Honeymoon won’t last. Still, there’s much to enjoy while it does.

Stage 3: The Wall (6 Weeks – 4 Months)

Apparently, unconquerable wall of depression, boredom, soberness, and despair will strike in the 45th day and it continues through the 4th month or near there. Infrequently, nevertheless, does the Wall last longer than 3 months. So, bare in your in mind that it’s going to get better. Though the Wall is often where people will relapse but the Wall is not absurd to conquer, just tricky.

Stage 4: Adjustment (Months 4 -6)

You’ve survived the Wall safely! The next stage is called “Adjustment” because that’s what distinguishes this time interval—adjusting, physically, socially, and emotionally, to life without crystal.

Stage 5: Ongoing Recovery (Months 6-12)

So as to approach the end of the first year crystal meth dependency can seem far away to your life. Recovery is always ongoing because, regardless of how distant your crystal dependence may seem, it’s essential to look back on that meth addiction is a chronic disease. (8)

Whatever you do, don’t try to depart from crystal meth on your own. Bound yourself with peers and family who can assist and motivate you. Enlighten yourself and decide which option works best for you.

How to Break Cocaine Addiction

How to Break Cocaine Addiction

How to Quit Cocaine

Cocaine was once popularly known as party drug of the rich and famous people. It is a strong feel-good and compelling stimulant that is made from the leaves of the coca plant, which a native of South America. It is considered as a high-class drug in comparison to other drugs because of it’s quite high-priced value.

People usually refer to cocaine as “coke” or “snow” because it is normally found in the form of a white, crystalline powder which creates short-term euphoria, loss of contact with reality, extreme enthusiasm and increased talkativeness. Since it is very fine and white some street dealers often mix it with cornstarch, sugar, talcum powder or flour to increase profits. (1)

Cocaine is one of the most threatening drugs known to man. Once a person turns one’s hand to taking cocaine, scientists have proven that it is almost unattainable to free yourself from its grip physically and mentally.

Physically it stimulates key receptors within the brain that, in turn, create a euphoria to which users quickly develop a tolerance. Today, cocaine is a global, multi-billion dollar industry; fringing all age group, line of work and economic levels, even schoolchildren as young as eight years old.

Statistical Data on Cocaine

Cocaine is the second most smuggled illegal drug in the world. Smugglers have delivered a total of 756 metric tons to South America and then followed by North America. On top of that, in 2006 National Survey on Drug Use and Health reported that 35.3 million Americans from young ages (12 years old and older) have used crack. Not only that, also according to the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction, cocaine is the second most commonly used illegal drug in Europe as well. (2)

How Do People Use Cocaine?

People snort cocaine powder through their nose, or by rubbing it into their gums. Also, for some, they mix cocaine with liquids and inject it directly into their vein. On the other hand, some users use another popular method.

Cocaine powder is mixed with a weak base, such as baking soda and during this chemical reaction, the substance changes shape from a powder to solid which resembles a rock. Users heat up a crystal cocaine to produce vapors that are inhaled into the lungs. That’s why for some, they called it as “crack rock”, which refers to the cracking sound once the rock is being heated. (3)

How Does Cocaine Affect the Brain?

In the normal neural communication process, a neuron delivers the dopamine into the synapse, where it can fasten itself to dopamine receptors on nearby neurons. Mostly, dopamine is then reprocessed back into the transferring neuron by a specialized protein called the dopamine transporter.

In the present of cocaine, cocaine binds to the dopamine transporter and obstructs the typical recycling process which results in building up of dopamine in the synapse, that later contributes to the pleasurable effects of cocaine.

In addition, cocaine also makes alterations to the level of serotonin; the neurotransmitter responsible for keeping the mood balance in our brains. Even more, cocaine escalates the amount of norepinephrine, which manages the body flight and fight reaction.

Consequently, giving the following effects of increased blood pressure, heightened body temperature, greater heart rate, dilated pupils, nausea, hyper-stimulation, tactile hallucinations, psychosis and intensified rate of respiration.

However, the effect of cocaine varies depending on the site it blocks, the user may feel euphoric, paranoid, impulsive, hostile, anxious or talkative and some may feel intense depression, apathy,  and schizophrenia.  

No matter how much of the drug is consumed or how many times, cocaine shoots up the risk of the user by experiencing a heart attack, stroke, seizure or respiratory (breathing) failure, any of which can result in sudden death. (4)

Here are other effects of cocaine that you need to know!

Brain Withdrawal After Being High

A further indicative of cocaine is that the body goes through sudden drug withdrawal, even after one use. A cocaine high may last for up to an hour be resultant from the quality of the drug. When the out-turn of cocaine begins to dwindle, dopamine levels become more stabilize but can be experienced as a shortage. As a result, the user may feel “low” for a bit as a result of main withdrawal side effects.

Recurrent use of cocaine is an insincere way of strengthening dopamine and serotonin. In the near future, the brain becomes rewired to process less and less of the two chemicals and starts relying on cocaine to produce them. In this case, when the user stops doing cocaine, he faces depression, anxiety and other problems linked with serotonin and dopamine deficiency. (5)

Quitting Cocaine

The best way to quit cocaine safely is by seeking help from health professionals. It is strictly recommended that user attends an addiction treatment center so that they can be supervised by medical professionals properly.

It’s best to begin with detoxification, because your mood and vital signs should be managed first before you start to work on treatment. Total detox from cocaine can take several days, and the most advised course of action after detox is a stay in a rehab center.  Inpatient rehab will give you a safe, controlled atmosphere that’s separated from any potential relapse triggers or temptations to seek out drugs.

In treatment, you’ll learn skills and coping mechanisms to help you manage cravings and move forward in life without cocaine. Therapy will be a huge factor in learning to modify your behavior and your impulse control.

Successful cocaine addiction treatment helps your transition from addiction into recovery. You’ll begin to embrace new ideas and make meaningful changes in your everyday behavior.

After Life Treatment

Aftercare is just as beneficial as treatment. Many convalesced addicts give credit to a 12-step program for their continuous and long-term recovery. The 12-step program as outlined: (6)

  1. Acknowledging that you are not in control over the addiction
  2. Accepting that there is a higher power that can help you
  3. Deciding to submit yourself over to the higher power
  4. Undertaking a personal checklist
  5. Confessing to the higher power, oneself, and other people that you have done something wrong
  6. Being prepared to have the higher power to address any drawbacks in one’s character
  7. Beseeching the higher power to take out those imperfections
  8. Making a list of bad deeds done to others and be eager to make expiate for those bad deeds
  9. Approaching those who have been damaged or hurt in the past, unless doing so would harm the person
  10. Relentlessly taking personal inspection and conceding when one is wrong
  11. Be in pursuit of enlightenment and relationship with the higher power via prayer and meditation
  12. Conveying the message of the 12 Steps to others in need

There are many non-12-step addiction support groups that you can check and explore as well. In general, getting involved at some recuperation get-together is really necessary to equip you with social support.

Additionally, constant therapy or face-to-face counseling is helpful in keeping up with healing. Recovery is a process, and persistent maintenance is vital. All it takes is one small slip and the whole cycle has the possibility to start all over again.

 

 

How to Break Marijuana Addiction

How to Break Marijuana Addiction

How To Quit Marijuana Addiction

Several health claims have been associated with marijuana also called cannabis in a more scientific term. Medical marijuana makes reference to using the whole, unprocessed marijuana plant or its extract to treat some indications of sickness and other diseases.

In spite of that, US Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) has not supported the marijuana plant as medicine yet. Since USFDA requires clinical trials in hundreds to thousands of human subject in the determination of the benefits and risks of medical marijuana, it still is considered as banned and illegal for some countries. (1)

In layman’s term, marijuana is also called as grass, dope, ganja, pot, mull, hash, Mary Jane, and the most popular of all, weed. Marijuana is considered one of the most commonly used illicit drugs in the world. Still, weed addiction can be very harmful not only to your health but also to your life. Smoking pot can lead to all sorts of problems that can interfere with your career, social life and personal relationships.

Understanding your Addiction

Tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, is the chemical in charge for the majority of marijuana’s psychological effects. Cannabinoid receptors are concentrated in some areas of the brain that is connected to the intelligence, memory, pleasure, coordination, sensory and time perception of the body.

THC stimulates the cells in the brain to release dopamine which is responsible for the euphoric high. On top of that, it also affects how information is being processed in the brain which causes hallucinations, delusions, and change of thinking. Kick-in takes over 10 to 30 minutes after smoking and effects may last for about two hours. (2)

How do people use marijuana?

People smoke dope in hand-rolled cigarettes, in pipes and in bluntsemptied cigars that have been refilled with marijuana. This paraphernalia pulls THC from marijuana and collects the vapor and depositing it in a storage unit. A person then inhales the vapor which will make them high in just a few minutes. (3)

Statistics of Marijuana Addiction

Researches done by NIDA shows that 9% of recreational users develop the dependence on marijuana. These percentages interpret to approximately 2.7 million people only in the US who is struggling with marijuana dependency. 6.7% of these percentage are 12 to 17 years of age. (4

What are the Health Effects of Smoking Pot?

Some short-term effects of THC also include, exhilaration, tranquility, sedation, pain relief, memory impairment, vitality, starvation, grogginess, increased heart rate, dryness of the mouth, red eyes, slowed perception of time, laughter, dizziness, feeling of heaviness, anxiety, and paranoia. These marijuana effects are the reasons why it is the most popular drug.

While short-term effects aren’t a major issue, long-term effect could be very serious has it has potential effects on the anatomical changes in the brain and can trigger a relapse in schizophrenic symptoms, according to NIDA. (5) In a recent study, researchers found a connection between high-THC consumption and anatomical alterations in a region of the brain which may lead to psychosis after three years of regular cannabis use. Moreover, weeds may reduce thinking, memory and learning functions especially for those who have been using this at their early age. (6)

Additionally, marijuana use during pregnancy has been linked to lower birth weight. It can also increase both brain and behavioral problems in babies. What’s more? Pregnant women who use weeds may contribute to a high possibility of affecting some developing parts of their fetus’ brain.

These problems can affect a child’s attention, memory, and cognitive skills. Smoking pot may also incur some amounts of THC excreted into the breast milk of nursing mothers that may also affect the developing brain of the baby. ( 7)

Can a Person Overdose from Weeds?

An overdose may transpire once a person consumes too much of a drug and toxic reactions had gone serious and harmful that it may cause death. Surprisingly, there are no reports of teenage or adult fatally overdosing on marijuana alone. Overdosing from marijuana combined with other drugs are most likely to happen.

Despite that, people can still feel some intolerable side effects like uneasiness and shake, else, some extreme psychotic reaction such as anxiety, paranoia or hallucination especially when using dope with high THC levels. (8)

How to Quit Smoking Pot?

People smoke pot to feel better, but in the long run after knowing the side effects that sweet Mary Jane might cause you was it really worth it? Smoking marijuana can be just as unhealthy and addictive as smoking cigarettes. Everyone is unique and so is his dependence on marijuana. But once you make a decision to quit, there are several ways you can go about your choice to quit.

Cold Turkey

Cold turkey is the process of simply stopping your smoking habits. It’s the easiest and less expensive plan for those who wants results fast and who doesn’t have enough money to undergo therapies but you’re going to need a game plan once you go cold turkey.

Stockpiled THC in your body can still affect you months after you have stopped smoking. Since you have been using pot for a long time in high doses, this small amount isn’t going to be enough for your body, which has built up a tolerance to the drug so severe withdrawal symptoms might take effect.

The good news is, this is only temporary. Marijuana withdrawal begins 1 day after you quit and hits 2 or 3 days, and eventually levels off after 1 or 2 weeks. These symptoms can be insomnia, irritability, lack of appetite, anxiety, or depression. All of which are easily manageable.

Seek Professional Help

Visit a psychiatrist for pharmacological help. Doctors may prescribe medications formulated to help you ease off of marijuana. This may be expensive but this may be your best bet because having a professional doctor who will look after your condition and monitor you from time to time may help you avoid having a relapse.

See a Therapist

If you have concerns that impede your recovery, a professional would be a great ally in your battle. There are several modalities or varieties of therapy, that might be appropriate for your pot addiction. You have to find someone specializes in addiction issues.

Join a Support Group

If you find it hard to abandon pot on your own because of peer pressure or a lack of faith in yourself, a support group might be the answer for you. Scientific studies have shown that whenever someone is dealing with a psychological issue, having a well-built social support system greatly increases the chance of achieving success. Tell your trusted friends and your family that you are quitting. It is so that they may help you to stay focus and attain your goals.

Check into Rehab

There is a chance that your own efforts may not work and your marijuana addiction is seriously endangering your health. In this case, you might need the help that inpatient rehab offers. Try to explore all your other options first because rehab is quite difficult and expensive, and not something you should enter lightly. 

For people who are truly struggling and on the brink of health collapse, this is the best option. Rehab will offer intensive treatment, medical help, and various counseling during the process.

Regaining Your Life

Marijuana is a very strong drug, more so today than ever. There may be a relationship between this and addiction. The reasons why a person started taking marijuana may still remain. For some people, it was a way to get over problems such as anxiety, fear, or depression. It could be simply boredom and no real direction or goals in life.

Quit marijuana addiction on your own terms.There are real and perceived pros and cons to any action you take. The most important thing is to just start doing something to get back on track for your own long term happiness and to reclaim your aspirations for a better life.

How to Break Heroin Addiction

How to Break Heroin Addiction

How to Break Heroin Addiction

Due to its unique hit and effects, heroin addiction is one of the most common addiction. Nutty and satisfying in taste, poppy seeds are healthy oil seeds used as a medicinal plant, as well as, condiments in cooking and garnishing to bread and bagels is the same poppy plant that produces opium poppy a substance that makes heroin one of the most highly addictive and fast-acting opiate drugs.

In 1874, the first heroin was synthesized from morphine and was claimed as a cough suppressant and analgesics for agonizing painful respiratory illnesses such as tuberculosis and pneumonia by a German pharmaceutical company, Bayer.

Bayer asserted that it is a non-addictive morphine substitute and was marketed from 1989 to 1910 and was exported to 23 countries only to find out that it rapidly metabolizes into morphine. (1)

Heroin, also known as smack, dope, horse, and junk can be a white or brown powder. Oftentimes, it is the most common misused drug among the opioid class. Some opioids are used to treat medical conditions such as pain, heroin, on the other hand, is illegal and has no approved medicinal claims. Instead, it creates a state of mental repose and euphoria for those who uses it.  (2)

Reports soon come into view stipulating that tolerance rapidly developed in patients treated with heroin. It’s starting to become addictive that dosage has to be increased over time, and patients would not stop taking heroin even after their condition has improved and their doctor has stopped prescribing it.

What is even more alarming is that patients who stopped taking heroin experienced withdrawal symptoms more critical than those patients who are morphine-dependent. (3)

Effects of Heroin On The Body 

Heroin is immediately converted into morphine once it has entered the body. It binds and activates opioid receptors as it has a similar chemical structure to that of endorphins– naturally occurring opioid chemicals produced by our body’s Central Nervous System (CNS) which inhibits our body to transmit pain signals along sensory neurons.

Furthermore, once these opioid receptors reached the reward center of the brain, they stimulate the release of another neurotransmitter called dopamine which produces pleasurable sensations of euphoria. (4)

The onset of heroin’s effect substantially depends on how it is administered. Aside from the  euphoric feeling and relief from pain, it can also be accompanied by other sensations which include the following:

  • Alleviation of anxiety or uneasiness
  • Complete sense of well-being
  • Warm flushing of the skin
  • Feeling of heaviness in the extremities
  • Drying of mouth
  • Growing body temperature
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Severe itching

After the initial effects, expect drowsiness for several hours, cloudiness on mental function, slowed heart and breathing function which oftentimes may be life-threatening as this may lead to coma and permanent brain damage. (5)

International Statistics on Heroin

Around 9.2 million people around the world are struggling with a dependency on heroin and it keeps on significantly growing steadily from 214,000 users in 2002 to 467,000 users in 2012 as per Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (6)

On top of that, four out of five drug-related deaths in Europe was associated mainly with the use of heroin according to the report made by the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction in 2008. (7)

Most recently, the highest number of drug overdose deaths was put on record in 2014 as it reached nearly 50,000 deaths and have accounted for 61% of overall drug overdose in the same year only for opioids which may include both prescribed pain relievers and heroin. (8)

How To Quit Heroin

Having strong self-motivation, support from people around you and a clear mind setting is the most powerful tool that one user needs to have in contending against heroin addiction. This may become the greatest battle in your life, but since you’ve come this far you are only a few steps away in winning this fight.

Trying to quit heroin addiction abruptly with the use of OTC drugs such as Imodium, Tagamet, Nyquil, Dayquil, and Robitussin can be very fatal, especially if you have been taking heroin for a very long time with high doses, this process is called cold turkey withdrawal.

This cold turkey withdrawal process can be very difficult as you may experience serious and severe withdrawal symptoms, such as nervousness, insomnia, vomiting, muscle aches and bone pains.

Furthermore, cold turkey withdrawal may increase your tendency of having a relapse. Making use of slowly but surely regimens and alternative therapies to lower down the dosage of opiates in your system over the course of time will be your ace for keeping yourself away from these severe withdrawal symptoms.

It is best to seek prescription from your doctor regarding these OTC drugs for proper advice and dosage recommendation.(9)

Battling for the first 7 days may be the most crucial part. There will be an ongoing war between your body, mind, and soul. Nevertheless, succeeding in the next 7 days without heroin will qualify you for the final round.

Mark your calendar!

Make your own calendar and place it on a place where you can it see it right away. It may be on the wall in front of your bed, on your kitchen wall or on your desk at work, as long as you can be reminded all the time. Write Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, all the way to Day 40 but put more emphasis on Days 1 -7. You will be crossing out each day that you will survive your battle.

Make a to-do list on each day. Make sure that for the next 40 days you will have to make yourself busy with activities that will help you improve yourself and keep that list next to you all the time.

Clean your contact list

It may be hard for your to delete some numbers from your phone, but this is one of the big steps that you have to take in life. Delete your dealer’s numbers and you might want to delete all your drug friend’s number as well. Better yet, change your own number too to make sure that none of them will reach you.

Knock Down all your Paraphernalia

Destroy all your paraphernalia, your needles, your spoon, your tie belt, your aluminum foil strips, your empty baggies, balloons, cotton balls, your straw, your lighters, all of it. Don’t leave any spare of these evil materials around you or around your house.

Have your quitting buddy

If you decided to come clean then you should have a drug-free quitting buddy. He or she should remind and support you through this war everyday. Always keep your quitting buddy by your side. You’ll have a much better chance fighting the withdrawals, urges, and cravings when you have a drug-free quitting buddy by your side.

Build your support group

Having a quitting buddy will help you a lot but building a support group can help you so much better. Be surrounded with good people. Welcome people in your life that support the idea of change. Be with people who will have a good influence on you and people who will encourage you to continue the process that you’re doing.

Your support group may include ex-drug addicts who survived their battle so that you may remain inspired knowing that if they were able to overcome their war and so are you. You can get lessons from their experiences that will help you to survive.

Prepare all your needs

Stock yourself up with lots of water for the first 7 days, hydrate yourself. Store some ginger ale, Sprite or 7up on your refrigerator and drink them up once you feel like nauseous or vomiting. You may also want to hoard some Gatorade to restore and balance your electrolytes. Lastly, get ready your survival food like bread, peanut butter, bananas, crackers, egg, yogurt, etc.

Prepare inspirational and motivational movies and listen to good music

Inspirational and motivational movies will help you to build up your self-esteem again. It will also make you realize that living a normal and happy life is the true essence of living. These movies will help you to fight this battle emotionally, mentally and even physically. This may also help you to make time run so fast.

To persistently be positive for the next 7 days, it will be in your best interest to try to refrain from listening to any kind of negative rap, hip hop, reggaeton, techno, trance, alternative, R&B, rock, classic rock, metal, or any music that reinforces old behavior patterns of the “old you”.

Music can affect you subconsciously. Good, clean and uplifting music will definitely help you and can change your thoughts into more positive perspective.

Exercise!

Walk, run or jog! The more active you become, then your chance of getting better is higher. Try to get as much physical activity everyday to keep you away from vomiting and having diarrhea.  The more activity and sweating you do, then the less the cold chills will trouble you. The more you move and exercise your whole body then the better your body will feel. You can attack withdrawals with exercise.

Have proper diet

Eat small portioned meals but keep it light to prevent or minimize stomach cramps. You will be needing proteins and small amounts of carbohydrates in your diet. Learn how to eat your fruits and veggies too!

Involve yourself in a withdrawal detoxification program

Inpatient heroin addiction detox programs utilize health care professionals to help you get out of heroin. Heroin detoxification with the help of healthcare professionals is a smart solution. It’s cheaper than hospitalization and better than outpatient heroin detox because you have someone to look after you. The main benefit to this is that healthcare professionals handle all phases of detox. Hence, the success rate is very high.

Chemical Dependency Units on Hospitals

This procedure of dope-sickness therapy may be high-cost. However, it is the most low-risk and most comfortable get off with heroin out of your body. There will be doctors and nurses to check and monitor you 24-hours a day. They will manage the detox program and make sure that you succeed on this battle.

Drug Rehab Treatment Centers

Drug rehabilitation centers provide professional counseling and medical supervision to assist you through the detox stage. It will help you to isolate yourself away from influential environments. But most professional rehabs are expensive but this is also the best way make yourself clean. 

How to avoid a relapse?

Stopping drugs like heroin, once addiction has developed, is a very difficult task. It takes time, patience and practice. Even if you have succeeded there is still a big possibility of relapse. Continuous adjustments and motivation after you have been clean for a long time must still be done. 

Keep up what you have started. We can’t change the past, but we can always start anew. Set your new goals, make it a life changing one. Stop heroin addiction now before it ends your life. Get back with your life, stay clean for good.

Should Drug Users be Jailed?

Should Drug Users be Jailed?

The Never Ending Debate On the Proper Approach

“For too long we’ve viewed drug addiction through the lens of criminal justice,” Obama said at a conference in Atlanta. “The most important thing to do is reduce demand. And the only way to do that is to provide treatment – to see it as a public health problem and not a criminal problem.”

Content Source: The Guardian

Two schools of knowledge exist when it comes to what approach must be done towards the societal problem of illegal drug addictions.

Some people believe that people who are addicted to drugs must be sent to prison. Another group believes that they must be treated the same way other sick people should be, through rehabilitation.

This post shall try to shed light on which path towards battling drug addiction should society follow.

Rehabilitating Drug Addicts Is Financially Smart for a Country

A study on the topic is shown in the journal Crime and DelinquencyIt has found that sending drug addicts into rehabilitation facilities can save countries not just millions of dollars, but billions. This other post in our website shows cheaper method in rehabilitation.

The same study shows that if just as little as 10% of drug addicts in the US were rehabilitated instead of imprisoned, the US can save as much as $4.8 billion per year. Raise it to 40%, and the country is looking at an annual savings of $12.9 billion a year.

Imprisonment Is More Likely To Worsen A Drug Addict Than Fix Them

Everyone knows that prisons are dangerous for any individual. It is not an ideal place to rehabilitate a person’s addiction. This is because drug addiction is not a choice.

It is more of a biological function that cannot be removed just by plainly punishing a person. Check out another post on the dangers of incarceration to alcohol addicts.

A study has shown that 90% of incarcerated drug users went back to drugs almost immediately. The same study has shown that 60-80% of them will commit another crime. This video shows how much better it is to send drug users to rehabs than to prison.

The 1920’s Alcohol Prohibition Should Serve As A Lesson

In 1919 the 18th Amendment in the US has been ratified. It aimed to prohibit the use of alcohol in the whole United States. The amendment, however, had incredibly backfired. It gave more power to alcohol cartels and syndicates due to the higher prices and rarity of alcohol.

The same can be seen in developing countries such as the Philippines where drugs are over-criminalized. The Philippines is currently undergoing something called a “War on Drugs”. Unknowingly, their government has made their streets more violent than it was before the war started.

Different countries have tried addressing drug abuses in their sovereignty by applying an iron fist. Sadly, many authorities are unwilling to realize the negative effects of this approach to their communities.

Hopefully, by educating both the private and public sector, everyone will eventually realize that treatment is better than imprisonment.