Arizona Addiction Recovery Center Phoenix & Scottsdale, AZ Sat, 18 Jan 2020 06:39:45 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Arizona Addiction Recovery Center 32 32 Tips For Fighting Seasonal Affective Disorder Fri, 17 Jan 2020 06:24:04 +0000 Have you noticed that you feel extra down-in-the-dumps around a certain time of year? That perhaps the blues hit you harder in winter than they do in summer? We are made to feel like the holiday season should be a happy time, so it can be extra confusing to experience these negative emotions. But there’s actually a reason behind why some of us may feel this way around a certain time of year (more commonly, during winter), and that is due to something called seasonal affective disorder. In this article, we will discuss what seasonal affective disorder is, and provide tips on how to combat this so that you can enjoy the holidays along with everyone else.

About Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)

Seasonal Affective Disorder (appropriately abbreviated as SAD) is characterized by changes in mood that occur during the same periods of time each year. In most cases, symptoms will arise during the fall and continue through the winter months, when the days are shorter and much colder. However, SAD can also occur during the spring and summer, though this is much less common. According to Psychology Today, “Seasonal affective disorder is estimated to affect 10 million Americans. Another 10 percent to 20 percent may have mild SAD. SAD is four times more common in women than in men.” Here are some of the symptoms to look out for:

  • Feeling sad or depressed nearly all day, every day
  • Feeling hopeless, low self-esteem
  • Low energy levels
  • Insomnia or other troubles sleeping
  • Loss of interest in activities you once enjoyed
  • Changes in appetite or weight
  • Feeling fatigued
  • Difficulty concentrating/brain fog
  • Having frequent thoughts of death and/or suicide

What causes SAD?

Unfortunately, there is no conclusive research for what actually causes SAD. However, biologists have some theories:

Those with SAD may be Vitamin D deficient. Vitamin D is provided to us through sunlight, absorbed through our skin. So it would make sense that people with Vitamin D deficiencies would suffer more during winter, when the days are shorter and sunlight is scarce.

Those with SAD may have problems regulating serotonin. Serotonin is one of the key neurotransmitters involved in stabilizing a person’s mood. One study showed that people with SAD have 5% more serotonin transporter proteins in winter months than in summer months. This is significant because higher levels of serotonin transporter proteins leave less serotonin available at the synapse.

Those with SAD may overproduce melatonin. Part of our body’s natural cycle (circadian rhythms) is to produce melatonin when it is dark outside, which is our cue that it is time for sleep. When winter days become shorter, melatonin production increases, causing people with SAD to feel sleepier and more lethargic.

8 Tips for Fighting SAD

  1. Try light therapy. Light therapy involves a period of time sitting in front of a “lightbox”, which emits a strong, bright light. In order for this method to be effective, you must use it consistently and properly. You don’t want to look directly into the light, but you must ensure that the light is entering your eyes for a period of 20 to 30 minutes. These 10,000-lux lights can be purchased on Amazon. You can also utilize something called a dawn simulator, which is essentially an alarm clock that uses light instead of a loud sound to wake one up. This is particularly useful in places where the sun doesn’t rise until much later in the morning, and it can be difficult getting out of bed when it’s still dark outside. It works by emitting light at a slowly increasing intensity, emulating a sunrise.
  2. Speak with a mental health professional. You may want to start out by talking with a counselor/therapist about how you are feeling. If they believe that your SAD is severe enough, they may refer you to a psychiatrist who can prescribe you antidepressants to help manage your symptoms. Either way, simply discussing your emotions and talking through how you’re feeling can be of great benefit to you.
  3. Adopt a healthy diet. Many do not realize how much your diet affects your physical and mental health. In general, eating a whole foods diet rich in nutrients will help to balance your body’s chemistry in a healthy, natural way. This can address all kinds of issues, not just seasonal affective disorder.
  4. Exercise. Moving your body can do wonders for your wellbeing. However, it can be difficult to find the motivation to exercise during low points in your life, when you don’t even feel like getting out of bed, let alone going for a jog. However, anything helps. Don’t feel bad about starting small. Even a 10 to 15-minute walk once a day before bed or even a few times a week to start will help you establish a habit. From there, you can increase the time and intensity of the activity. The effects of this will double in treating SAD if you perform these activities outdoors in the sunshine so that your skin can absorb more Vitamin D!
  5. Don’t hibernate. During the cold winter months, it can be tempting to bundle up inside and sleep in late, but this only serves to exacerbate the effects of SAD. Instead, you want to try and get up early and get moving as soon as possible. This will help you to feel more energized, productive, and excited to see what the day has to offer. Open those curtains and let the light in as soon as you can!
  6. Keep a regular schedule. Again, it may be tempting to sleep in on the weekends when you’ve got nothing but time and the thought of exposing yourself to the cold outside of your covers is much too overwhelming! Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time every day. This will expose you to light at a more reliable and consistent rate, and help you gain more control over your life.
  7. Get out there. Spending time with friends or even alone doing activities that get your brain and body moving will help distract you from the symptoms of SAD. We understand that all you want to do when you’re feeling sad is isolate yourself, but we promise that once you start doing something you enjoy, it will drastically improve your mood and leave you feeling content and energized for the rest of the day.
  8. Get more Vitamin D! As we mentioned before, a lack of Vitamin D could be linked to seasonal depression. Aside from simply exposing yourself to more sunlight, you can also try taking over-the-counter Vitamin D supplements.
Best Methods for Preventing Relapse Thu, 16 Jan 2020 20:51:51 +0000 Upon detox, everybody has the best intentions to stay sober. Sadly, the National Institute’s latest research on drug abuse shows that within a year of addiction treatment, over 60% of those suffering from addiction will succumb to relapse. Those statistics may sound shocking to those who have not experienced addiction. However, anyone with firsthand experience with addiction will tell you otherwise. Recovery isn’t easy, and many don’t believe it’s a linear path. Since the risk of relapse is always present while living in recovery, it is entirely possible to achieve long-term sobriety by empowering yourself through a variety of strategies for preventing relapse.

Why are skills for preventing important?

Relapse avoidance skills are necessary for learning how to live a happy sober life. One day at a time, one might learn to use these coping mechanisms to prevent relapse and continue living beyond substance abuse.

Rehabilitation from alcohol or other drugs with developmental milestones is a continuum of personal growth. There is a chance of relapse at any point of rehabilitation, making it highly important to understand relapse prevention skills. Among the most common relapse causes include:

  • Boredom
  • Stress and Anxiety
  • Financial Problems
  • Relationship issues
  • Problems related to the sense of smell and sight
  • Anger

Most drug and alcohol recovery programs educate patients about strategies of reduction of relapse to make them understand how to continually progress and meet short and long-term goals. There are a wide range of strategies to stop relapse that can be applied to try and prevent it from happening.

There is a common misconception that preventive techniques should be used only when someone has a willingness to use them. Nonetheless, in order to prevent or reduce the risk of cravings, relapse prevention skills should be incorporated in the daily schedule and routine of each recovering person.

Top 10 skills in prevention of relapse include:


Signs and symptoms of post-acute withdrawal include insomnia and exhaustion while recovering from addiction. The Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS) in New York states that these are common possible relapse causes. It is possible to enhance their sleep quality by incorporating physical exercise and a healthy diet. It can be achieved by developing and maintaining a daily routine of sleep, exercise, and eating. It encourages one to retrain the body to sleep better and also helps to reduce the likelihood of relapse.

Hungry, Angry, Lonely, and Tired (HALT)

In general, when you feel anxious or “down,” ask yourself whether you have any of these symptoms mentioned, hunger, rage, exhaustion, or fatigue. When you stop and say to yourself, “HALT”, you can better acknowledge your negative emotions and address them in a healthy manner.

Mindfulness Meditation

Meditation of mindfulness is a practice that teaches people to become more self-conscious. We are better able to cope with potential triggers to relapse if we are more self-aware. An NCBI study found results that indicate significant improvement in treatment individuals that adopt a preventive relapse plan with mindful meditation relative to those who do not use meditation with awareness. Individuals who used meditation for mindfulness remained clean and sober longer and had fewer cravings and increased awareness and acceptance. Participants are encouraged to learn to “play with” their cravings through Mindfulness meditation, rather than combat them. 

Acceptance that cravings will come is a skill that has been gained through this experience when applying skills in the prevention of recurrence. Concepts, like embracing, letting go of personal control, and using prayer and meditation, are hallmarks of meditation on mindfulness. A simple meditation technique of mindfulness, created by the co-founder of Spirit Rock, Jack Kornfield, is a phrase to repeat 3 times while concentrating on your breath slowly and carefully:

The core principle of mindfulness is to pay close attention, awareness or emphasis on what you’re doing, where you are, who you’re with, and more. To start the process of becoming more attentive, just consider what you’re doing without judgment. Writing down your daily activities can be helpful by recording them with a smartphone to raise awareness of what you’re doing, thinking, and feeling. This can result in an immense understanding and determination to work against cravings.

Comprehension and the causes of triggers

Triggers can be internal, such as anxiety, lack of energy, tension, frustration, and poor self-esteem, such as individuals, locations, or objects reminiscent of prior experience. Having a list of internal and external stimuli is an important way to understand one’s symptoms and reduce relapse risk.

Join and be part of Support Group

Regular attendance in a support group like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or Narcotics Anonymous (NA) provides support, accountability, encouragement, and the ability to meet friends who understand what you’re going through. It also avoids recurrence as it decreases feelings of loneliness and the possibility of isolation, both of which can be important relapse triggers.

Grounding Techniques

When it comes to healing, stress and anxiety are often the biggest obstacles. A useful technique of prevention of relapse is a calming technique called the technique of coping 5-4-3-2-1. It requires you through the five senses to focus on the moment and avoid thinking about using liquor or other drugs, anxiety, negative self-talking, and any other unhealthy thoughts or feelings that might cause someone to want to escape.

The 5 steps start with a few deep breaths, followed by:

5- Acknowledge five things you see around you

4- Acknowledge four things you can touch around you

3- Acknowledge three things you can hear around you

2- Acknowledge two things you can smell around you

1- Acknowledge one thing you can taste around you

Start with a long, deep breath in this exercise. Focusing on your senses can help you gain self-awareness and increase awareness, helping you perform daily tasks, resolving negative thoughts or feelings, becoming more in control and less stressed, and reducing the risk of relapse.

Deep Breathing

As you know, breathing is the key to life. What many don’t know, though, is how much control you have over your life simply by changing your breathing patterns. Not only is breathing related to various essential functions in the body, but it also has a major impact on your brain chemistry. Breathing changes your emotions profoundly and helps to regulate your mood as a whole. That’s why breathing deeply with one’s mental health is so critical.

Deep breathing stimulates the brain’s neurotransmitters, many of which release healthy chemicals that help relax, relieve and reduce pain. Deep breathing and increased oxygen supply often allow the body to exhale toxins. 

The 4 x 4 is a common method of deep respiration. Take four deep breaths through the nose and stay free for four seconds. As you breathe in and out, you can feel the diaphragm. Deep breathing is a great way to avoid relapse, as it can be used almost anywhere without anyone realizing that you are doing it.

Create an Emergency Contact List

It can be difficult to manage when an impulse occurs, especially at the start of recovery. A very useful skill in the prevention of relapse is making a list of supportive family members or friends that you can call for assistance in recovery as well. Speaking to a supportive individual will help you get over the temptation and understand why you don’t want to go back to previous habits. Having the list on you at all times is vital as it is a tool that you can use when calling someone safe quickly.

Play the Tape Through

Just play the tape first is a great tool when you feel like drinking or getting high and decide what to do. In order to play the tape, you have to play up to the very end of what will happen in your head. Consider what is going to happen in the short and long term, whether you want to drink or use it. Thought about the consequences of using a drug or drinking alcohol and if you have not used it. This can improve decision-making and reduce the risk of recurrence.

Ask for Help

Implementing these methods of relapse prevention into your daily schedule can help increase your likelihood of preventing relapse. To learn more about inpatient or outpatient treatment services, contact a committed care provider to learn more expertise in relapse prevention and get help today.

The 5 Stages of Addiction Tue, 14 Jan 2020 06:11:47 +0000 Addiction is something that people all over the world suffer from. But how does this kind of problem form? Today, we’re going to be talking about the 5 stages of addiction and what each stage looks like.

What are the 5 Stages of Addiction?

Addiction is defined as a “chronic reappearing cerebral disease” the National Institute for Drug Abuse states that addiction can also be defined as compulsive substance use, regardless of the effects. Dependence can destroy your life, but you feel as though you can’t stop.

Multiple phases of addiction can take time, sometimes months or even years to develop. Even if a person believes they practice substance use in moderation, it almost always turns into some kind of dependence.

The extent of abuse and its effect on a person are important to recognize. It not only triggers uncomfortable short-term symptoms, but it can also trigger long-term health concerns. To better understand addiction, we must take an in-depth look at the 5 stages that lead up to the problem: experimentation or early use, continued use, tolerance, dependence, and finally addiction.

1. Early Use

There are many reasons why a person might seek out the use of drugs or alcohol. The abuse of drugs and alcohol most often comes about through experimentation with use. Experimentation or early life use can cause a person to become more at risk of addiction development.

Adolescents, since they are still developing, are extremely susceptible to experimental use due to things like peer pressure. Adults often find that they can blow off some steam, relax, or cope with negative emotions through substance abuse.

Though many individuals are able to regulate alcohol consumption and do not regularly drink or use medications, it is often a matter of individual situations whether or not this experimental use is likely to cause dependency in the future. A range of risk factors that contribute to an individual having a greater risk of addiction are defined by the Mayo Clinic, including:

  • Genetic history of drug and alcohol abuse or other mental health problems.
  • The feeling of being neglected by people.
  • General community culture.
  • Group of peers or relatives permissive use of drugs or alcohol.
  • Depression, social problems or isolation.

Nonetheless, even these risk factors will not necessarily lead to the development of addiction, they simply increase the likelihood of it ever developing.

2. Continued Usage of any Substance

When experimental use becomes more and more frequent, it becomes normal use. A person may regularly take drugs before going out with friends or drink at celebrations. A person may even start to use substances on their own without any peer attendance. This kind of behavior can quickly lead a person to use these substances outside of pleasant situations. They may start to use substances as a means of coping with negative feelings because they’ve learned they can forget about their problems if they’re inebriated. When continued use occurs, the actions start to create health problems, both short-term and long-term ones, including one major problem: tolerance.

3. Tolerance

The first warning sign of dependency is often tolerance. Tolerance is when the brain and the body are modified by the toxins ingested through substance abuse. A person may feel that the effects they get with their normal substance dose doesn’t do the trick like it used to. Someone may start to think they need 6 beers to get drunk instead of their former 3. Another example would be a person uses pain medications to cope with pain, but they start to feel as though they need higher doses in order to cope with their pain. This is usually experienced after the substance has been used for some time.

Tolerance is a warning that the brain has been modified due to continual substance use. Slowly, the brain of the person adjusts and alters how the presence of the substances reacts. Once a person has developed a tolerance, they will next develop a dependence.

4. Dependence

An intense tolerance will only lead to dependence. As we mentioned previously, if a person starts to develop a tolerance but still has a strong desire to use, it can become dangerous. It is clear that a person has developed a tolerance when this occurs. Another way of knowing if a person has developed a dependence or not is through intense symptoms of withdrawal. When the drug is not used, the user will feel the physical and mental side-effects. This just goes to show that the body has become dependent on a substance.

These negative symptoms can go away temporarily when the drug is used, but of course, this is not a good solution to the problem. A person who has developed a dependence does not feel “normal” unless they are under the influence of something. This stage is a sign of the onset of addiction. Treatments can be used to treat cravings and relieve serious symptoms of withdrawal. Therapy can also help to improve self-esteem, helping a person cope with stress and overcome other mental health issues.

5. Addiction

Addiction is the ultimate and final stage in substance use. Due to the serious consequences of the addiction itself, it is almost impossible for people to stop using it without help.

Addiction is a chronic disease that leads to specified symptoms and behaviors that help medical professionals diagnose the disease. “Rock bottom” is the seemingly lowest point for an addict; it can feel like they’re at their lowest point and that nothing will change. However, things can change with the right guidance. No matter how far gone a person thinks they are in substance abuse, there is always a way out.

Treatments can be used to control the cravings of substance and help alleviate other uncomfortable symptoms an addict may experience in early recovery. Therapy can help people who are addicted to their behavior, to gain greater self-esteem, to cope with stress, and to tackle certain mental health issues. Regardless of what stage of addiction you are in, there is always a way out of it. Help is out there, you just need to look for it.

Understanding Customized Holistic Treatment Mon, 13 Jan 2020 18:10:09 +0000 There are many people who are addicted to alcohol or any drug. This addiction can lead to various types of health problems and can also lead to death. Some people can overcome these addictions and tell about their past experiences. Traditionally, such an addiction can be treated through lectures, group therapy, and many others. The duration of such programs can be a month or more. After the completion of these courses, people must go back to the same environment where they can be again tempted to have alcohol or drugs, which they have left during the therapy. In such a case, customized holistic treatment can be used to treat such people so that they are not tempted to the things that they have stopped consuming. As the level of addiction and the resulting disorders differ from person to person. So, a tailor-made set of treatments is identified for every individual depending on his or her physical and mental condition. That’s why the term customized holistic treatment. 

Overview of Holistic Treatment

In this type of treatment, the whole body of the patient has to be inspected. It is believed that all parts of the bodywork together to make the body a single entity. People who are addicted to alcohol and various types of drugs cause damage to the person in a way that he becomes ill emotionally, mentally, spiritually, physically, and socially. In such cases, rehabilitation facilities are available and people suffering from addiction are treated here. The treatments conducted here include counseling and group meetings. Holistic treatment therapies are also conducted. The main aim of this treatment is to let the person know himself and the reason that led to the addiction.

Techniques of Holistic Treatment

In this type of treatment, both traditional and modern therapies are used to cure the patients. Various approaches included in the holistic treatment are as follows:

Dual diagnosis treatment
In this type of treatment, drug addiction and mental health disorders of a person are diagnosed. Due to these two disorders, the treatment is called dual diagnosis treatment. Mental health disorder includes various state of mind like anxiety, depression, stress, frustration, tension, and many more. The cases related to dual diagnosis can be found in homeless people and in those individuals who have to deal with various types of criminals.

In this type of treatment, the health professional inserts very thin needles at some special points in the skin of the patient. These needles are pierced to different depths. The main aim of this treatment is to provide relief from pain. There are many other things for which this treatment is used. The flow of energy in the body can be easily regulated with the help of this treatment.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy
This type of therapy is used to improve the behavior of a patient. The behavior of a patient can be changed through various reasons. The basis of this treatment is behavior and feelings, which can be changed due to the presence of certain people, or situations.

Spiritual counseling
In this type of treatment, each person is treated on the basis of his religious affiliation. The treatment helps the patient to know about the things which they desire in life.

Family therapy
In this type of therapy, the relationship of the person with his family is dealt with and all the conflicts are resolved. The beginning of helping a person getting rid of addiction is repairing his relationship with his family. This therapy helps a person in living peacefully with his family and will provide him the strength to leave the things he is addicted to.

Motivational interviewing
The goal of this treatment is to encourage the patient so that he can leave the substance, which has caused the addiction. This will also change his behavior. The treatment is done to relieve the person from various kinds of stress that have led him to become an addict.

This is a therapy in which the patient is suggested to do various types of physical exercises. Along with it, the patient has to perform other exercises, which are related to breathing, relaxation, controlling diet, meditation, and many others. This will help in relaxing the mind.

Benefits of holistic treatment

Holistic therapies along with traditional therapies help a patient to get rid of alcohol and other drugs addiction. The therapy works for a long time and people are not easily attached to the substances again. Holistic therapy helps a patient to be treated emotionally, physically, and spiritually. There are many benefits to this therapy, which are as follow

Personalized treatment

People are given personalized treatment so that they feel that they have been given importance. This is considered as the best approach because each addicted person is considered as unique and a personalized treatment plan is best for such people.

The entire body is healed in this treatment

The treatment considers the patient and not any part of the body. The healthcare professionals take care of the mind, body, and spirit of the patient. The effect of all these things are taken into consideration and then the treatment is started.

The environment is compassionate and caring

The environment in which the treatment is to be done is compassionate and makes a person feel taken care of. The harsh environment will make the person uneasy and he will like to leave the place as soon as possible. The staff working in the rehab center should be well trained so that they can take care of the patient in the most compassionate and caring manner.

Recovery should be long term

The holistic treatment is applied in such a way that people feel easy and are ready to accept and face any kind of challenges. It has been estimated that the treatment lasts longer and the patient does not go for addiction to anything again.

Many types of treatment options are available

There are many types of treatments available in holistic treatment and the staff can use any of them to help the patient to get rid of addiction.

Holistic treatment has helped many people in getting rid of addiction to alcohol and other substances. The environment is caring as well as compassionate and people are given personalized treatment so that they can feel that they are very important.


Addiction In Sports Thu, 09 Jan 2020 04:11:39 +0000 Spectator fans line arenas and stadiums every year to watch their favorite athletes in practice. They’re idolized by fans, young athletes want to be them, and company advertisers want to partner with them.

Like millions of Americans, however, athletes battle with substance abuse to drugs and alcohol. A day scarcely passes where we don’t hear of an athlete attending rehab, failing a drug test, lavishly drinking or overdosing on a substance.

Professional sports encourage the misuse of drugs. Most athletes are highly paid, and through their social circles, they can easily access drugs. This has contributed to an outbreak of substance abuse that has destroyed countless athletes’ lives.

Why Do Athletes Abuse Substances?

For various reasons, people use medications. Others do this to improve performance or to remedy an accident.

Its threats may be raised by intense pressure to exercise. Athletes are no less resistant to alcohol abuse and addiction than others. Athletes may be advised to use medications to increase their athletic performance, cope with strains from high pressures, handle sports-related injuries, recover more quickly from injury (or simply cover), or even mental health problems. Some may also use emotional relief drugs after they have to retire.

Athletes can use medicines to enhance athletic performance. Athletes could use drugs like steroids to gain a competitive edge. However, this is considered cheating, but still finds its way into the world of sports.

Managing mental illnesses

The treatment for physical injury is often given to athletes. However, they have less chance of being treated for mental health. Some athletes try and treat their symptoms by using alcohol and drugs.

Deal with pressure

Athletes often experience considerable pressure on and off the field. You can feel pressure to win, boost your results, or recover fully from an injury. Many competitors may take drugs to cope with this distress.

Treat physical injuries

People recovering from physical injuries can use drugs for the relief of discomfort including opioids and weed. Addiction occurs for certain people after painkillers for an accident have been administered. They can start to abuse their medications and become reliant on them, both physically and psychologically.

Retirement issues

Sports players are much more likely than other occupations to enter early retirement. Athletes that are unready to quit and enjoy the excitement of action will make a difficult shift away from the game. Drugs and alcohol often become ways to cope with these struggles for retired athletes.

Peer pressure

The sports community has an approximate 67% bodybuilders who use drugs, 52% of people who play football use opiates, and 93% of college athletes consuming alcohol. Substance abuse is widespread.

Drugs abused by most athletes

Athletes can use several drugs to boost performance, treat pain or injury, and deal with physical tension, such as drugs that strengthen the performance, stimulants, and narcotics.

Performance-Enhancing Drugs

Anabolic steroids

Athletes can use high doses of anabolic steroids to increase the muscular size, work out more hard and get back faster from workouts. The human body produces naturally anabolic steroids in the form of testosterone that helps muscle building.

Androstenedione (Andro)

Andro is a drug that athletes use improperly to exercise and recover from injuries more efficiently. Research has shown, however, that andro does not improve muscle strength or testosterone levels.

Human growth hormone (HGH)

Athletes can use HGH for muscle mass and efficiency enhancement. The medicine used is only recommended and is obtained and marketed routinely unlawfully.


Athletes can use diuretics for weight loss or drug testing. Diuretics function by adjusting the fluid and electrolyte rates of the body. They are common among sports, such as boxing and wrestling, which promote strict weight control.


This medicine increases red blood cell production (erythrocyte) and hemoglobin that can increase the delivery of oxygen to the muscles. Erythropoietin may be used to increase stamina and aerobic strength.

Prescription Drugs

Prescription opioids, including OxyContin and Vicodin, are narcotic painkillers for use in pain management. Consumers can have high doses of euphoria and depression, alongside pain relief, with significant enough dosages.

Although some people may continue taking opioid painkillers with a prescription, many others either use them non-medically or without medication at all. Self-treated people can experience some resistance and dependency in compliance with the prescribed directions. But those who neglect them may grow major dependence on their biology and eventually dependency much more rapidly.


Amphetamines and methamphetamine

To improve alertness and strength athletes may use amphetamines, including illegal drugs methamphetamine. Amphetamines will give users a feeling of control, raise self-confidence and minimize appetite. As a result, some athletes may use amphetamines to lose weight, for example, boxers or wrestlers.


Adderall is a prescription depressant for the treatment of hyperactivity disorder and attention deficit. As with other stimulants, athletes may use Adderall to improve performance, manage fatigue and lose weight. It can also improve alertness, focussing and response time.

Other Drug Substances


Athletes drink alcohol before practicing or training to reduce anxiety and therefore enhance their performance. Consistent consumption of alcohol is more likely to lead to other performance issues. Some sports teams can also encourage binge drinking for new members as an initiation.


For euphoria and relaxation, athletes may use marijuana.


Athletes like other stimulants can use cocaine to improve endurance and efficiency, concentration, reduce tiredness and lose weight. Cocaine induces a fleeting euphoria and increases energy. Patients will “binge” the medication to maintain the boost over and over again.

Effects of Drug Abuse and Other Substances Among Athletes

Drug abuse among athletes may lead to negative effects such as:

Suspensions and bans

Several sporting professional organizations have strict rules for the use of performance improvement and recreational drugs. Suspensions, suspensions or sanctions can be severe for competitors who break such laws. Previous awards, certificates or rewards may in some instances be revoked. These implications have been encountered by practitioners like Lance Armstrong, Steve Howe or Brett Favre.

Job loss and early retirement

Drug abuse may interfere with the ability of an athlete to concentrate and adversely affect the performance of an athlete. Several side effects may arise from some drugs and may be associated with symptoms of withdrawal that impede performance. Many players may be forced to retire early due to adverse substance usage results.


The misuse of medications such as morphine order prescription drugs may also have a high risk of a fatal exposure. Amphetamine use can cause a fatal hemorrhagic stroke or heart attack. Opiate abuse such as cocaine or treatment for a prescription is also highly lethal. Len Bias, a college basketball player, and Derek Boogaard, both of whom died of an accidental drug overdose.

Treatments for athletes with drug abuse issues

The support of several forms of treatment services is essential for athletes who are struggling with addiction issues:

Inpatient treatment programs obtain community, patient and family care and temporary housing. Intensive diagnosis and the treatment focuses on helping people understand their addictions and heal from them.

Outpatient programs offer several hours of treatment weekly, with participants returning for non-treatment hours to their own homes or other houses. The therapeutic intensity depends on the program in question. Intensive outpatient programs (IOP) typically offer 2 to 4 days of care weekly, whereas limited programs of hospitalization may provide 5 or more days a week of treatment.

Twelve-step programs are related to Alcoholics Anonymous values. These programs help individuals break denial, recognize the gravity of their addictions, connect to a higher power and develop relations with others.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) Therapists help individuals see the relationship between their thoughts, feelings, and behaviors and teach them prevention and coping skills. Theresapeuters help participants to learn the links between their thoughts and their feelings and their behaviors.

Network therapy can be a valuable technique for the diagnosis of drug dependency. Network counseling promotes parental and community involvement in care which integrates CBT tools and techniques. Athletes may benefit from engaging in network counseling for their colleagues.

Motivational interviewing allows people to focus on improvement in their ambivalence in early recovery. Athletes may treat conflicting feelings concerning their use of drugs (known as the stage of change for “pre-contemplation”). It is aimed at helping people to recognize the consequences of their use, and inspire people to stop and take steps for improvement.

Athletes who have problems related to substance abuse may also have problems with mental illness, like depression, anxiety or other problems related to mental health. Drugs and alcohol can be a way of coping with an existing condition of mental health. Substance abuse counseling programs, which help people with dual diagnosis disorders, are available. Such services, including counseling, psychiatric therapy, and support groups facilitated by trained professionals, provide therapeutic interventions for both depression and mental health. Also there a few sports / exercise specific rehab facilities. One of those is Soberman’s Estate in Scottsdale, AZ. They are an all male facility and have helped a lot of athletes including ex pro athletes and current professional athletes! Its a great drug rehab in Arizona.

Note, you are not alone and athletes throughout the nation are dealing with similar problems at every level of the game. Only when you’re ready to stop consuming drugs, become clean, and start to live a drug-free lifestyle, the path towards rehabilitation will begin. Most athletes look back and wish that they hadn’t placed so much into bodies for competition or glory. You can always interrupt the relapse chain, but right now there it seems unlikely.

Medicare: Questions About Rehab Sun, 05 Jan 2020 18:49:53 +0000 Around 17 percent of adults 60 years old and older are affected by prescription drug and alcohol abuse, according to the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Seniors are especially susceptible to the effects of substance abuse because their bodies aren’t able to metabolize these substances as easily and experience an increase in brain sensitivity. Medicare benefits don’t only exist for rehab following surgery or a traumatic accident. Yes, Medicare covers rehabilitation treatment for physical injuries, but Medicare also provides areas of coverage for drug and alcohol abuse rehabilitation. 

Does Medicare Part A Cover Rehab?

Medicare Part A will cover rehabilitation treatment received in a hospital setting if it is deemed “medically necessary” by a healthcare provider for substance abuse. Your Medicare Part A hospital benefits will cover up to 100 days after at least 3 days being in a hospital for inpatient rehab. Your benefit period for this will begin the moment you are admitted to the hospital. Part A covers inpatient care at other inpatient facilities such as skilled nursing facilities and home health care when a healthcare provider confirms the services as necessary and reasonable.

Inpatient hospital facilities a person can receive rehab treatment for substance abuse include:

  • Acute care hospitals
  • Mental health care
  • Inpatient care for an eligible research study
  • Long-term care hospitals
  • Inpatient rehab centers
  • Critical access hospitals

If a patient is receiving treatment from a specialty psychiatric hospital, they cannot exceed the lifetime limit of 190 days.

Does Medicare Part B Cover Rehab?

Unlike Part A, Part B covers outpatient care and services. Part B provides coverage for a yearly assessment for alcohol misuse for adults who don’t quite meet alcohol use disorder criteria but who still drink. If the results of the assessment show a level of alcohol use that is concerning to your provider, you may receive up to four face-to-face counseling sessions per year.

Partial hospitalization may also be covered under your Part B benefits if a physician requires that as part of your care plan. The plan of care is required to include at least 20 hours a week of treatment. Partial hospitalization programs and services include: 

  • Individual and group therapy
  • Occupational therapy
  • Patient education
  • Family therapy
  • Administration of drugs for therapeutic reasons
  • Diagnostic services for mental health issues deemed medically necessary
  • Activity therapies that are not chiefly recreational

Does Medicare Part D Cover Rehab Treatment?

Although Medicare Part D may not cover every prescription drug, the plans are required to cover at least one anticonvulsant, antidepressant and antipsychotic used for mental health treatment. For Medicare beneficiaries who suffer from substance abuse, a Medicare Part D plan might cover prescription drugs commonly used to help with substance abuse behaviors. For example, Part D plans have drugs associated with opioid dependence. 

Not every formulary is the same, so it’s important to check your formulary to confirm any drugs your healthcare provider includes in a treatment plan are covered. Exploring the different Part D plans available to you can make all the difference for your retirement savings. Different drugs may be included on one drug formulary and not the other, and in a lot of cases, drugs are listed on different tier levels with different insurance carriers.

When it comes to understanding Medicare and what it covers and doesn’t cover, it’s always recommended to contact your insurance provider to confirm. Check out your options to see what Medicare covers for rehabilitation if you or your partner on Medicare is experiencing drug or alcohol abuse

Dual Diagnosis Defined Fri, 03 Jan 2020 17:23:02 +0000 Dual diagnosis refers to a person who has developed an addiction alongside a mental health issue. These issues can differ from person to person. Someone may be depressed or anxious and struggle with alcohol consumption. Others might habitually use marijuana while suffering from schizophrenia. No matter the substance or mental illness, dual diagnosis is a serious issue, let’s discuss this further.

What is Dual diagnosis?

Dual diagnosis refers to a person with mood disorders like depression or bipolar disorder (also referred to as manic depression) and alcohol or drug addiction. A double diagnosed patient has a mental illness and actively struggles with drug or alcohol abuse. Around half the people with mental disorders will also struggle with a substance abuse disorder or vice versa. 

It can be difficult to determine whether a substance abuse disorder or a mental illness occurs first. What we do know is that factors such as school, relationship problems, work, stress, etc. can all increase a person’s potential for mental illness or substance abuse development.

Dual diagnosis-related problems

Problems of mental health and substance abuse have a huge impact on a person’s life and their future. Other problems can evolve if these two problems occur together. For example:

  • Diagnostic difficulties and whether the problems the person experiences are mainly due to medicines, the mental illness or both
  • Problems involving a person and completing treatment for their issues
  • Recurrence in one condition will increase the risk of re-occurrence in the other condition
  • There could be a possibility that one condition could increase the risk of another or that a current issue with the other disorder might become more troublesome.
  • Interactions with alcohol and other drugs prescribed for a prescription may lead to unwanted adverse effects and the risk of overdose can rise. Medicines prescribed by the doctor may also lead to problems
  • High rates of poverty and social isolation, illness and physical health problems, attitude, abuse, antisocial behavior, and imprisonment have been shown in individuals with a dual diagnosis.
  • Dual diagnosis syndrome may affect the ability or capacity of a patient to treat their disease efficiently.

Who’s likely to be diagnosed with this problem?

Though anyone can suffer from mental health issues or substance abuse disorders, there are demographics who are particularly vulnerable to this:

Young adolescent

Adolescents are among some of the most vulnerable demographics to mental illnesses and substance abuse disorders. Their age and lack of life experience make them more vulnerable during their physiological, cognitive, psychological and social development stages.

Indigenous People

Indigenous individuals have gone to show a higher risk for developing substance abuse disorders, making it that much more likely for them to develop mental illnesses alongside their addictions.

Old age

Due to aged anatomy and diminished social interaction, the likelihood of an elderly person to develop a mental illness is very high. This can make substance abuse much more likely if the person does not already have one or struggled with one in the past.

However, as we mentioned previously, there is no one demographic that is more vulnerable than the other, most anyone can struggle with addiction. 

What are the common mental health issues present in dual diagnosis?

There are several mental health and behavioral disorders that often co-exist with substance abuse disorders. Such changes are often the root cause of addiction. This is why, when it comes to a person’s long term addiction recovery program, it is crucial to never overlook the signs of mental health issues or behavioral issues. Here are some common mental health issues that occur in dual diagnosis.


Individuals with ADHD may be more likely to abuse drugs to cope with their symptoms. Most patients are prescribed medications to treat their ADHD, but these medications can become addictive if used even slightly outside of the prescribed amount.

Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder is one of the most difficult mental illnesses to deal with. People who struggle with this illness often resort to self-medication in order to suppress their disorder. Drugs and alcohol provide temporary relief to people with bipolar disorder.

Borderline Personality Disorder

Research has shown that addiction and BPD sometimes exist simultaneously. More than two-thirds of BPD people at some point in their lives resorted to substance abuse.


Annually, 1 out of every 10 people experiences anxiety/depression in the United States. Many people with depression try to medicate themselves with alcohol or drugs in an effort to provide temporary happiness or numbness from the stress around them. This only exacerbates the problem. For those with pre-existing depression, the crash after the high can be devastating.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

Generalized Anxiety disorder (GAD) is the most common mental illness in the US, impacting 18% of the adult population. People with GAD may be more likely to use alcohol and drugs to treat their symptoms. People may also abuse benzodiazepines, which are highly addictive prescription medications used to treat anxiety disorders.

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) induces other unhealthy obsessions. This disease has many variations.

Post-traumatic stress disorder

When a person develops depression, their brain produces fewer endorphins than normal, which makes them more likely to turn to alcohol or opioids for pleasure. According to the United States, The Department of Veteran Affairs reported repeated alcohol abuse in nearly 75 percent of soldiers and veterans suffering PTSD from their time in combat.

Treatment for Dual Diagnosis

Mentally ill individuals were nearly twice as likely to die from a substance use problem for the general population. Likewise, people who often use drugs or alcohol can experience a co-occurring mental or psychological condition.

Several factors that overlap that exacerbate the mental health or the use of drugs:

Brain functions

Abuse of medications can cause psychological diseases. In some individuals, for instance, overuse of marijuana can cause psychosis, which is a severe mental disorder that causes people to lose touch with reality.


Genetic predisposition may increase their chances of having an addiction or psychological illness. Research shows the chromosomes responsible for 40-60% of a person’s vulnerability to dependence.

Exposure from the substance at an early age

People who use alcohol or drugs at an early age can develop a substance abuse disorder or possibly a psychological disorder. This is because the use of substances is more likely to damage the brain by adolescents and young adults than by old adults.

The best way to treat a dual diagnosis is in the organized and safe environment of a rehabilitation center. Moving for stationary treatment is suitable due to the high level of attention and care provided by patients. Going through rehabilitation and medical supervision is the best way for an individual with co-occurring additions and mental illnesses to treat their issues.

Dangers of Prescription Drug Abuse Thu, 02 Jan 2020 03:32:14 +0000 The use of a prescription drug is only meant to be administered by a licensed practitioner. Prescription drug abuse or inappropriate usage is when a person starts to use a prescribed medication outside of a doctor’s instructions. This could be someone continuing medication use after it is no longer needed or using more of the medication than the doctor’s instructions. Although the consequences are detrimental, drug abuse may become persistent and compulsive.

Prescription drugs may be more dangerous than people believe if they are administered in a manner that a doctor has not prescribed. It’s drug abuse and this is illegal.

What Are Prescription Drugs?

A prescription drug (also pharmaceutical or medical medication) is a product that is prescribed by a doctor. Doctors can prescribe medications for minor to severe pain as well as other symptoms.

Why Do People Misuse Prescription Drugs?

Many may use pharmaceutical drugs to help them have more pleasure, weight loss, change, or to simply get high. Though these medications can be helpful, they are just as dangerous as street drugs. Prescription medicines, like other illegal drugs, are often distributed in the markets.

Nevertheless, prescription medicines are only effective for those with chronic pain or illnesses. This is because a specialist has examined these individuals and administered the correct drug for their condition. Doctors also tell patients exactly how to take the drug, how much to take, and for how long. However, this does not always stop a person from continuing use or overusing.

What Are The Risks Of Prescription Drug Abuse?

When someone is using narcotics whether these substances be medications or street drugs, the risk of someone committing a crime, being the victim of a crime, or having an accident is much greater.

Like any misuse of medications, the use of prescription medicines for misunderstood purposes presents severe health risks.

Opioid Abuse

May contribute to diarrhea, change in mood, decreased thinking (cognitive activity) capacity and even diminished breathing rate, coma, or death.

CNS Depressant Abuse

CNS depressants can slow down a person’s pulse and breathe. Their internal organs can be put in jeopardy if a person uses other medications along with it such as prescription painkillers, over-the-counter cold, allergy drugs or alcohol.

Stimulant Abuse

Heart failure or coma (like certain ADHD medications) may be induced by this kind of prescription drug abuse. Such dangers are exacerbated by the association of stimulants with other drugs like OTC medications and cold medicines. When you take too many stimulants, they can contribute to an irregular heartbeat or dangerously high temperature. High doses can render someone aggressive or anxious over a short period.

A stimulant addiction may not result in physical dependence and relapse, but the use of opioids could become a complicated habit.

When people take drugs in a manner that is not meant for use, the risks of prescribed drug misuse may be rendered worse. The reality that Ritalin is recommended for small children with ADHD may seem innocuous. Furthermore, if someone does not use it (such as snorting or injection) in an unnecessary way, then the toxicity of Ritalin can be severe.

Effects of Prescription Drug Addiction

Listed below are some of the health complications that come along with prescription drug abuse:

Health Problems

Abuse of these drugs poses various risks. Opioids may induce fear, mood changes, reduced cognitive function, menstrual cycle interruptions, depression, and slowed or accelerated breath.

If the respiration is extreme, there is even a chance of unconsciousness or death. CNS depressants and sedatives may contribute to memory problems and convulsions. Short-term use of some stimulants can contribute to paranoia; high doses can lead to an increase in body temperature. Cardiovascular diseases and severe epilepsy are also at risk.


Some of these drugs can be addictive already. If misused, there is an exponential risk of addiction. You are physically dependent upon a drug, and you develop an unchecked desire for a drug. Usually, you need more medications with the same effects at higher doses and may that is risky behavior.

Stopping the medication use causes symptoms of withdrawal, physical symptoms such as diarrhea, vomiting, and anxiety. Removal of opioids leads to symptoms like bone pain, sleeplessness, fatigue, and excessive leg motion. The loss of stimulants may trigger problems with depression, stress, and sleep. Removal from a variety of sedatives and relaxing agents may contribute to life-threatening effects.


Since these medications may induce effects such as sedation, car accidents can easily occur. There is also a higher risk of injury because your cognitive functions are impaired.

Poor Academic Performance

Though some people use prescription drugs to help them focus on work or academics, in the long run, it only affects their ability to learn. It may help in the moment, but it will greatly affect a person’s brain function in the future.

Research shows that addiction is a disease that can be effectively treated. The type of medication used and the preferences of the patient must be taken into account when considering rehabilitation. When available, effective treatment may have to incorporate multiple components such as detoxification, medication, and medicine. For the patient to complete recovery, several medical treatments may be required.

Behavioral therapies (such as risk reduction and cognitive-computational therapy) and drugs represent two main areas in the diagnosis of drug addiction. Behavioral therapies help patients avoid using medications by modifying negative thoughts and behavioral patterns. We advise you to manage your appetite and eliminate circumstances that could contribute to relapses. Behavioral therapies that take the form of medical, family, or social therapy can also help patients strengthen their interactions and job and community functions.

Medicines such as buprenorphine, methadone, and naltrexone can also be used to treat addiction to prescription drugs. Both prescription treatments may help prevent further addictive impacts (naltrexone) on the conscience or relieve symptoms of invasion and cravings (buprenorphine and methadone).

Medications for the management of opioid addiction, known as medication-assisted therapy (MAT), frequently work together with psychosocial services or behavioral interventions. There are also drugs available to alleviate physical withdrawal symptoms (lofexidine).

Consult a doctor regarding prescription medication if you think you may have an addiction. Note that medical professionals are trained to help you and not condemn you. You may feel embarrassed to talk about it, but there is no judgment.

Videogame Addiction is Real Wed, 01 Jan 2020 23:30:30 +0000 It’s fun to get a hobby you enjoy doing. But can you push an interest too far? And when does it transform into an addiction? This is the problem that video games analysts are trying to answer.

Video games, with the advent of very basic gameplay, have caught American interest since the 1970s. Although the visuals of these foundational programs seemed rudimentary compared to today’s sophisticated, multicultural sports, this modern pastime quickly intrigued many teenagers, adolescents, and adults.

This quickly became obvious that video games might take up a great deal of time while the players try to win over and again and again. Today, video games are known as a dependency, close to compulsive gambling and a desire to compete is one of the main motivations.

What is Videogame Addiction?

Not everyone believes that video gaming can be addictive. Video games are assumed by many, including parents, to stimulate creativity, to give children a chance to work in collaboration and to develop cognitive abilities. Though this is true, video games can become addictive. Video game dependency is a real condition for mental health impacting millions of people worldwide.

In the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11), the World Health Organization describes this as “gaming disorder”. The cause for the addictive quality of gaming is still unclear, although researchers suggest that the play cycle and winning will contribute to releases of dopamine, the same thing that causes happiness and euphoria when we perform ‘pleasing’ activities.

Causes of addiction

There are a wide range of reasons as to why video games are addictive. Nonetheless, one of the main reasons for video-games being so addictive is that they are built to be exactly that. As anybody else trying to make a buck, video game makers are always searching for ways to get more people to play and to play for longer.

Video games are designed to manipulate you by cutting-edge behavioral psychology. Games are sensory activities that provide a high dopamine amount, and an over-exposure to this stimuli level will alter the way a person experiences pleasure.

They do that by making a game difficult enough to hold you playing, but not so frustrating that the player eventually gives up. In other terms, a gamers’ performance always seems out of control. You continue living in a world where you receive immediate pleasure and reward. Games are so intense that you can waste hours and hours playing without even knowing that a minute has passed. You will flee and see tangible progress.

Signs of addiction

Video game abuse includes mitigating factors, as with any other addictions. People need to know how you or someone you care about is an avid participant to understand such signals. Such signs can be both emotional and physical, according to the Illinois Center for Addiction Recovery.=

Abuse Emotional Signs

Among the emotional signs or symptoms of video game dependencies are:

  • Feeling nervous and/or irritable when not playing.
  • Concern about past online activities or the intention of the next online session
  • Lying to friends or relatives about the time spent playing
  • Seclusion from others to spend more time playing

Abuse Physical Signs

Such physical signs or effects of video game dependency include:

  • Fatigue
  • Intense pressure or eye strain migraines
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome caused by joystick or computer mouse overuse
  • Poor Hygiene

Risk of Videogame addiction in an individual’s health

Obsessive video gaming can adversely affect a changing mind or body. The consequences of hours spent sitting on the couch or at a computer desk may also impact adult players. Some of the main concerns of young players are described below:

  • Hours on a screen or in front of a monitor will impact the body of a young adult. The lack of physical activity in video gaming contributed to questions about the public health of American children and adolescents about weight gain, poor posture, and increased risk of type 2 diabetes.
  • Although video games involve participation in computerized settings, children need to train for socializing with their peers. Understanding how to communicate in a real-world environment is an important social ability that people who spend too much time playing can forget.
  • The quick and fast motions of video games are a cause of concern for the loss of concentration among participants. For starters, children who spend a lot of time playing video games are less interested in reading books that require greater attention and focus.
  • Teenagers are a period of self-discovery and personal growth. Teens must be able to face painful emotions and difficult social encounters to become mature adults who face the challenges of their life. Fantasy role-playing video games may help kids develop and adapt important functionality to their experiences with others when they are utilized correctly. Nevertheless, because computer play is used as an escape mechanism, children may stop creating problems.
  • Children and young people who spend lots of time playing video games based on combat, fighting or abuse may display more symptoms of attack than those not playing the games.
  • Many players may become possessed by clicking images, lights, and colors of the video game displays. There is also evidence that compulsive play may contribute to repetitive stress injuries to the hands or wrists.

Treatment for Videogame Addiction

Video games have had a huge impact on the cultural attitudes, psychological development, as well as on the preferences of children and adults, both positive and negative. Although these games can be regarded as a challenge to the physical and emotional health of participants, they have also been marketed as effective conditioning devices and are even used in clinical settings for physical or cognitive therapy.

Video game addiction treatment may take many forms, from different rehabilitation methods or 12-stage plans. Many drugs can even prevent addictive behavior. CBT or cognitive behavioral therapy is a treatment that can be effective. This counseling on mental health tells you how to modify gaming ideas to help you adjust your conduct.

It is not always easy to recover, but it is possible to do so. The problem of video games can and should be viewed as a harmful problem as any other drug. The first step in resolving dependence is to accept that dependency occurs. Please don’t hesitate to find help with your video gaming problem if any of the aforementioned signs or symptoms show up, or someone you meet.

What Factors Cause Addiction Tue, 24 Dec 2019 19:06:43 +0000 It’s hard for a person outside of addiction to understand why someone abuses substances. What these people do not realize is that addicts believe substances help them enjoy or cope with life. What they don’t realize is that they have actually developed a serious dependency to substances. 

Substance and addiction problems are dynamic and often with significant impacts on the patient. Today, we’re going to discuss what exactly factors can cause a person to develop a dependence to drugs or alcohol and why it happens.

What are the factors that cause addiction?

History of substance abuse in the family

Genetics can have a heavy influence on whether a person develops an addiction or not. To be more precise, a person with addiction in their family history is actually 50% more likely to develop one. Twin studies have shown this. The other twin is likely to be addicted if one equal twin is addicted to alcohol. But the other twin does not necessarily have an addiction if one non-identical twin is an alcoholic. Studies have shown that 50-60% of addiction is due to genetic factors based on the differences between the same and the non-identical twins. If a father, mother, grandfather, or grandmother suffered from addiction in the past, their offspring will be much more likely to develop one themselves.

Poor stress management skills

Stress is a major risk factor of dependency. For a number of reasons, anxiety is a risk factor. The more stressed you become, the more you want to escape or relax, and that is why people are turning to alcohol or drugs. Secondly, when you are under stress, rather than doing what might be good for you, we often seek out whatever is easiest. This often results in people binge drinking or using drugs to escape since it’s easier than exercising or getting outside. 

Negative mindset

If you are stressed, uncomfortable, irritable, or discontent, this can lead to a negative mindset that can hinder your decision-making skills. When all you have are negative emotions and feelings, you’ll want to escape, relax, or find some kind of enjoyment which can lead directly to substance abuse

Underlying anxiety or depression

Around 15-30% of abusers also suffer from underlying depression. This double condition can be referred to as dual-diagnosis. The problem is that some people seek out substances if they’re depressed, or people become depressed after seeking out substances too often.

What are the factors that make worsen addiction?

Outside of the factors we mentioned above, let’s discuss what factors can worsen addiction. Though addiction does not take any bias and most everyone can be susceptible to the disorder, there are common factors that we often find in many struggling or former addicts. Most notably, factors like genetics and environment play a key role in a person’s continued substance abuse. Let’s discuss this more.


The reaction of your body and brain to a particular medicinal product is partially determined by the inherited characteristics of your genes. As we mentioned previously, if a person has relatives that have suffered from addiction, they are far more likely to develop an addiction themselves. If a person still sees a family member abuse substances, it can also appear normal to them. If their parents continually get drunk and binge drink, they can see that as normal and acceptable behavior.


Environmental factors, like the prevalence of drugs/alcohol, the social acceptance of substance abuse, and the availability of substances can have a great impact on a person’s substance abuse habits. If a person lives in an area where getting drunk every night is a normal thing, they will be more likely to do just that. If a person surrounds themselves with friends and family that actively abuse substances, they will once again become more likely to perform the same behaviors.

Genetics and Drug Addiction

There are three factors that affect a person’s willingness to engage in a particular behavior:

  • Capability: A person must engage in behavior in a psychological or physical capacity.
  • Motivation: The automatic and reflecting mental processes that guide behavior, both the euphoric feelings you are experiencing immediately after using the drug and your more aware attitudes to drug use.
  • Opportunity: The physical and social factors that either restrict or promote behavior in your environment, including the age of first use.

Environment and its relation to addiction

The environment is also important in the development of dependence, as the climate has an effect on behavior. Environmental contributory factors to drug dependence include:

  • Lack of social assistance
  • Drug use among many individuals
  • Socio-economic state
  • stress and the capacity to cope
  • Family and adult engagement
  • The past of misconduct or disrespect
  • Compulsive behavior history

There are ways to mitigate adverse environmental conditions and to combat or prevent drug addiction in the first place. It is not an easy process to change environmental factors like socioeconomic status. Another method of doing this is to postpone alcohol use. One is to promote social rewards, such as learning and training, for positive behavior. Vigilant families and friends can also form positive behavior and participate in supportive practices for hazardous participants.

All these measures can help counter environmental factors that can lead to drug dependence.

Addiction to drugs and brain change

Drug dependence often causes serious changes to the brain and body. In particular, addiction changes the way we experience pleasure. Continually abusing substances will make a person feel as though substances are the only things that can make them feel pleasure, making other activities like eating food, having sex, or exercising feel less stimulating. When this happens, a person is only further encouraged to abuse substances, leading them down a dark path of addiction.

What we often fail to realize is that addiction is not necessarily these people’s fault. Yes, they made the initial decision to use a substance, but after that their brain is manipulated by the toxins in substances. These toxins cause a person to feel like they need to use again and again; this is how addiction forms. We need to realize that there are a lot of factors that cause a person to develop habits like these and that they need our help. Addiction tells these people that they are getting the help they need through substance use, but this couldn’t be further from the truth.