In order to effectively address drug addiction as well as the co-occurring issues that may be underlying the problem, most patients will require residential or inpatient care. At a residential treatment program, the addicted patient will live at the treatment facility with access to 24-hour care and support that can be critical in helping them to avoid relapse in the early stages of recovery.
As alcohol abuse progresses from dependency to addiction, your need for alcohol will become increasingly overwhelming. You may start to spend more and more of your time drinking or thinking about drinking, leaving little time for anyone or anything else. This can affect your ability to take care of responsibilities at home and work, and can have a negative impact on your relationships with family members, friends, and work colleagues.
Your first step is to call our Patient Access Team for a confidential phone assessment. You will talk with a recovery expert who will determine whether drug or alcohol treatment is needed and, if it is, will recommend the appropriate level of care and work with you to coordinate insurance benefits. If alcohol or drug addiction is not clearly indicated or if you’re not ready to commit to an inpatient stay, you can learn more about your situation and possible next steps by participating in one of our residential evaluation programs. Residential evaluations typically involve a four-day stay at one of our treatment centers where a number of screenings and assessments will help to identify your particular needs and challenges.
Detox is not the expulsion of ‘toxins’ from your system, but a reaction of your nervous system to the absence of alcohol. Withdrawal from alcohol and its sedative effects results in an overreaction of the nervous system. A number of severe symptoms can develop, such as disorientation, extreme anxiety, diarrhoea, very high blood pressure, delusions, heart rhythm changes etc. This is very dangerous if not supervised and monitored by personnel experienced in addiction recovery treatment. These symptoms can now be controlled in a safe way through proper medical attention and pharmacotherapy during the detox period. Our clinical staff has extensive experience dealing with alcohol detox and conducts the process in as much safety and as comforting an environment as possible. This is a vast improvement from a time before modern medicine when there was a death rate of 33% for those going through severe alcohol withdrawal.
While casual or moderate drinking has some potential advantages – relaxation, heightened enjoyment of stimuli, etc. – problem drinkers are unable to enjoy these advantages without alcohol. In other words, casual or moderate drinkers will be able to find other ways to relax or enjoy themselves even if alcohol is not present, or they make the choice to abstain. But if someone is completely unable to function for pleasurable reasons without alcohol, they cannot conceive of having a good time without getting drunk, or reaching for the bottle is their first response to any kind of trigger (either stressful or pleasurable), then this is a sign that they are abusing alcohol and need help to stop. A day in the life of a heroin addict
Drugs are built to interfere with those messages, causing the release of too many neurotransmitters for the wrong behavior—taking drugs. This causes a huge spike in pleasure for a destructive activity that eclipses normally pleasant activities needed for survival. Drug use also prevents normal reuptake of these brain chemicals, throwing off the entire process and your natural balance, altering your mood. Soon, all that matters is to produce that flood of neurotransmitters again—and due to the addiction, there’s just one way to do that: drug use.
Nalmefene, an opiate antagonist that is similar in its chemical structure to naltrexone, is one of the most recent drugs being investigated for the treatment of alcoholism. Like naltrexone (sold as ReVia, Depade, or Vivitrol), nalmefene deprives the person struggling with substance use of the pleasurable feelings associated with drinking. But nalmefene is less toxic to the liver than naltrexone. As of 2013, nalmefene was still undergoing clinical trials through the U.S. National Institutes of Health before receiving FDA approval. From Rehab to a Body Bag | Dying for Treatment: VICE Reports (Full Length)