Dope Sick Withdrawal

Learn about the flu-like “dope sick” symptoms of opiate withdrawal

When you hear the term “dope sick” it refers to symptoms of illness that come after the effects of opiates wear off. In fact, feeling these dope sick symptoms may be the first sign that dependence has taken hold. The body has become used to the drug’s effects, and it begins to require the substance more often. The dope sick symptoms are a cue to get the next dose ready.

This is the cycle that keeps people locked in addiction. As the brain adapts to the drug, it will become destabilized when the drug is not available. This causes very unpleasant symptoms to emerge. To avoid feeling a flu-like illness, the person will be inspired to feed the disease with more heroin or pills.

Opiate addiction is a serious national problem. The CDC just released fresh data that revealed the highest ever rate of drug overdoses occurred in 2020, with 93,000 deaths. Of these, about 70,000 deaths were due to opiates, nearly 20,000 more than in 2019.

Learn About Opiate Addiction

Opiates include a class of drugs that are derived from the poppy plants that produce opium. These drugs include morphine, heroin, and codeine. Synthetic opiates include fentanyl, oxycodone, hydrocodone, oxymorphone, and hydromorphone. Fentanyl, which is 50 times more potent than heroin, is involved in a very large number of recent drug overdose deaths.

Opiates are powerful drugs with a very high risk of leading to addiction. Back in the 70s, it was found that that the brain has receptor sites for opiates. When an opiate binds to these receptors it alters the body’s pain perception.

At the same time, it releases a flood of dopamine, causing euphoria. Heroin and other opiates cause the brain to produce ten times the normal levels of dopamine.

Over time, the brain pathways become altered in response to the presence of the drug. This causes the brain to stop making its own dopamine. The drug ceases to offer the same results are it once did due to increased tolerance.

Signs of Opiate Addiction

Addiction sets in quickly as the body becomes dependent on the chemical reaction in the brain. It becomes harder to function normally. Daily tasks are ignored, jobs are lost, and money problems mount. The sole focus becomes obtaining more of the drug, no matter what. Why? To avoid feeling dope sick.

There are some common warning signs that a loved one may be using opiates. Symptoms of opiate dependence or addiction can include:

  • Slowed breathing.
  • Tiny pupils.
  • Drowsiness
  • Confusion
  • Constipation
  • Nodding out or losing consciousness.
  • Signs of euphoria.
  • Social withdrawal.
  • Financial problems.
  • Doctor shopping.
  • Mood swings.
  • Compromised immune system.
  • Legal problems.
  • Skin abscesses or infections due to IV use.
  • Bowel perforation.
  • Breathing distress.
  • Displays withdrawal symptoms.

Opiate Withdrawal

When you or a loved one make the choice to get help for the opiate problem, the first step in recovery will be withdrawal management. Detox services are often part of a treatment program, right there on the same campus. This is the best setting to obtain help for treating the opiate addiction.

The rehab program will begin with detox. This is the time during which the body has to adjust to no longer receiving the drug. As the effects of the opiates wear off, the person will begin to feel very ill, or “dope sick.” This is the onset of opiate withdrawal symptoms. These dope sick withdrawal symptoms can begin within a few hours of the last dose:

  • Muscle aches and pain.
  • Stomach cramps
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • Excessive sweating.
  • Shaking
  • Yawning
  • Chills, goose bumps.
  • Increased blood pressure.
  • Mood swings.
  • Racing heart.
  • Lethargy
  • Paranoia
  • Agitation
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Runny nose.
  • Tearing eyes.
  • Dry mouth.
  • Agitation
  • Sleep disturbances.
  • Intense drug cravings.

In some cases, meds can help reduce the pain of withdrawal and cravings. These may be prescribed as part of the aftercare program to help you become stable in recovery.

Opiate Recovery

After the detox is complete, it is time to embark on the next phase of recovery. Treatment is needed because it teaches you now to manage cravings, triggers, and stress. The program will teach new coping skills and guide you in planning a relapse prevention plan. Mostly, this part of your recovery gives you a chance to make changes in your thoughts and actions.

Opiate Addiction Treatment includes:

  • Talk therapy. During these one-on-one sessions the therapist helps you take a look inside. For most people, there are factors that might have been driving the drug use early on. This might have been to self-medicate a source of pain. These could be a mental health issue, chronic pain, or a sad life event, or a past trauma.
  • CBT. CBT shows clients how their thought patterns may have led to the use of the opiates. The therapist helps to point out disordered thoughts and poor responses to triggers. You then learn how to replace those distorted thoughts with healthy ones.
  • Group sessions. Group therapy provides the social support so crucial in addiction treatment. Members of the group, under the guidance of a therapist, share their own stories and discuss their feelings, their fears, and their goals. These sessions provide a chance to form lasting bonds with peers in recovery.
  • Adjunct therapies. There are several activities that can enhance the treatment results. These include family-centered therapy or couples therapy, life skills training, and coping skills. Learning how to better communicate, how to manage feelings, or to control anger are all useful in recovery.
  • Holistic. When it comes to breaking the grip of an opiate addiction, the focus cannot be solely on the substance use disorder. People are comprised of a body, a mind, and a soul. When one of those is broken, it is not possible to fully heal. Holistic methods, like mindfulness, yoga, art therapy, mediation, music therapy, and deep breathing can help address and heal all aspects of the person.

Bodhi Addiction Recovery Treatment for Heroin and Prescription Pill Addiction

Bodhi Addiction Treatment devotes its efforts to caring for the whole person. We apply this focus to treating clients with an opiate use disorder, knowing that there are many layers to the addiction. With expert treatment offered through a holistic lens, wellness can be restored. For more detail about the program, please reach out to the team today at (877) 328-1968.

Rehab Northern California

Holistic addiction treatment rehabs treat the whole person, not just the disease.

A recent trend toward a more holistic approach to treatment is now front and center in some rehab programs. Holistic treatment is based on the concept that our wellness involves all aspects of the person: mind, body, and spirit. When one of these realms is unhealthy, it affects all the other areas of our being.

There is an array of holistic methods that are present in treatment programs, right there with the other therapies. The thought is that, without treating all the facets of our wellness, it isn’t possible to sustain sobriety.

Combined with therapy and other mainline treatments, the holistic methods only help to strengthen recovery. Read on to learn more about holistic treatment for substance use disorders (SUD).

Learn More About Holistic Wellness

The goal of holistic wellness is simple: to achieve optimal wellbeing through the healthy functions of the whole person. The thought is that when your mental health is stressed or unwell it will impact your physical health and your spiritual health. This concept follows through to all of these aspects of being. To treat the SUD you must address all these facets of wellness.

This is done through the use of holistic treatments. These will assist the person in healing all areas of their life, not just the symptoms related to the SUD. Learn to quiet the mind, to relax, to reduce stress, to eat healthy, to get proper exercise—and improve wellness.

The Holistic Model for SUD Treatment

For most of the past many decades, SUDs have been treated using traditional methods. These include mostly psychotherapy, education, and medication. The concept of SUD treatment has widened quite a bit in recent years. Not only are there more drugs now to help support recovery, but holistic methods are now part of the landscape.

It is now believed that holistic methods enhance the overall treatment effect of the rehab program. They do this by helping the person to engage in rehab while in a more relaxed state. When people feel relaxed they are more open, calm, and willing to share during group sessions. This also holds true for the one-on-one talk sessions. In classes, when relaxed, more of what is being taught will sink in.

So Many Holistic Treatment Methods to Choose From

Even just ten years ago, rehabs did not include much in the way of holistic treatments. That has really changed now that it is widely known how these methods can augment the treatment outcomes.

Yoga.

Yoga is used as an adjunct therapy in rehab because of its ability to increase strength, reduce stress, and help you achieve a calm mental state.

Meditation.

Spending time in thought and reflection helps the person gain new insights while also gaining control over their feelings. Learning how to meditate can help promote better control over cravings. Having more control over thoughts can help the person take a pause before they respond to a trigger. When prayer time is included in the sessions, it also becomes a source of strength.

Journaling.

The practice of keeping a journal provides an outlet for feelings, thoughts, and prayers. Putting your feelings down on paper helps to reduce stress, versus going over and over an event in your mind.

Mindfulness with deep breathing.

Early recovery is not easy. The mind is still bouncing around and can disrupt any attempts at peace. Mindful awareness can help to better manage roaming thoughts. When coupled with deep breathing techniques, stress is also greatly reduced.

Massage therapy.

Stress can be held in the back, neck, and shoulders. Massage therapy helps to release the muscle tensions and toxins in the body. It also calms the mind as the person enjoys being deeply relaxed and in a tranquil state.

Acupuncture.

Placing tiny needles in five areas in the ear can help during treatment, and beyond. This ancient practice assists by reducing pain related to detox symptoms. It can also reduce stress.

Fitness therapy.

Movement benefits both our physical and mental health.  Programs that include fitness will help clients improve overall wellness while elevating mood with release of the feel good hormones.

Art therapy.

Some folks may not be willing to open up during therapy sessions. They may feel self-conscious about revealing their deepest thoughts and fears. These same people may find that art therapy helps them to express their feelings artistically instead.

Aromatherapy.

Using certain essential oils has been found to help people relax and distress. These oils can also help improve sleep. Consider lavender, rose, orange, ylang ylang, and frankincense oils to help reduce stress.

Equine therapy.

Caring for a horse, by feeding, grooming, and exercising the horse, can be helpful in treatment. Helping with the horse’s needs becomes a source for building self-esteem, confidence, and caring for something outside oneself.

Gardening therapy.

The process of planting and caring for a garden can help reduce stress. Being outdoors also helps you increase your vitamin D, which can protect against depression.

When treating someone for a SUD, it isn’t enough to just focus on the disease alone. Many factors underlie an SUD in most cases. Trauma, life events, failed relationships, and illness can be involved. Ignoring all the realms of a person in favor of just treating the SUD is not going to yield long-lasting results.

The mind, body, and spirit work in tandem to create a healthy, centered sense of being. Rehab programs that feature holistic methods offer a more complete approach to treatment. These programs take into account the whole person and all their needs.

Bodhi Addiction Treatment Rehab Northern California

Bodhi Addiction Treatment Center offers a blended approach of evidence-based and holistic treatments. Our unique approach centers on helping clients to function better in all levels of their being. By adding the holistic aspects to the treatment program we believe the long-term results will be strengthened. For more details about our program, please give us a call today at (877) 414-1024.

impulse control

Impulse control problems are common among people who abuse alcohol. When someone struggles with impulse control, they are unable to resist engaging in behaviors that cause them, or others, harm. Impulse control disorder (ICD) is a newly defined type of personality disorder.

ICD often co-occurs with alcohol abuse. An ICD called “intermittent explosive disorder” features bouts of rage, but there are other types of impulse control issues that might also be present in alcoholics. These might include compulsive gambling, pyromania, or kleptomania. But the ICD most present in people with an alcohol use disorder (AUD) is intermittent explosive disorder.

A study looking at patients who were enrolled in alcohol detox showed that 38% had a co-occurring ICD. Of those, 2/3 had intermittent explosive disorder. The next most common ICD in these study participants was a compulsive gambling. Drinking also involves compulsive behaviors, and the two disorders often coexist.

What is Impulse Control Disorder?

Impulse control disorder is a mental health disorder that features a problem with controlling behaviors. Early signs of the disorder may first emerge in childhood or the teen years with conduct disorder, ADHD, or oppositional defiant disorder. These show up as antisocial type behaviors that cause problems in school or with authority figures. About 10.5% of adults have an ICD. The disorder follows a cycle. There are increased urges or cravings that build up of tension when anticipating the act. This is followed by the impulsive act itself, and then a feeling of relief after the act is completed.

Types of ICDs include:

  • Intermittent explosive disorder. This involves angry outburst against people, animals, or property. The person may have had a problem with a neighbor, family member, or stranger that triggers severe rage. The outbursts are short-lived, only lasting about thirty minutes.
  • Compulsive gambling. Gambling becomes an ICD when the person cannot control the urge to keep gambling even when they want to quit. Compulsive gambling can cause severe problems in someone’s life. Alcohol abuse is common among males who engage in compulsive gambling.
  • Pyromania. This is the act of repeatedly setting fires on purpose. The person is obsessed with fire and fire setting, and set fires as a way of releasing tension.
  • Kleptomania. This involves compulsive stealing of items for no reason. The person may steal things from stores, and have no need or use for the items. They end up throwing it away or giving the item to others.

Treatment for an ICD is mainly focused on behavior-based therapies along with antidepressants.

Impulse Control and Co-Occurring Alcohol Abuse

Although impulse control and alcohol abuse are separate disorders, they do share common features. They are called co-occurring disorders, or the presence of both an SUD and a mental health issue like ICD. Data supports that many people with an ICD also suffer from substance abuse… with numbers as high as 50%.

As with other dual diagnoses, it is hard to pinpoint which disorder emerged first. Was it the SUD that led to the ICD or the other way around? Of course, not all who have an SUD have an ICD. Just as true is the fact that not all people with impulse control issues have an SUD.

When Alcohol Abuse Crosses Into an Alcohol Use Disorder

There is a risk of alcohol abuse morphing into a severe AUD when paired with ICD. The ICD itself, whether it is the sudden bouts of rage or constant gambling, may be relieved somewhat by drinking. As the cycle goes on, the risk increases that the person becomes dependent on alcohol.

Someone with an impulse control problem might find themselves facing harsh effects of their ICD. If it is coupled with an AUD then the problems are even more intense. These include:

  • Legal problems. Setting fires on purpose, stealing goods from stores, or raging towards others can often result in a criminal offense.
  • Money issues. Compulsive gambling can destroy someone’s finances.
  • Relationship problems. Angry outbursts can harm a marriage and lead to divorce.

There are some telltale signs that an AUD is present. People that become dependent on alcohol will display warning signs of the drinking problem. These include:

  • Obsessed about drinking and having alcohol on hand.
  • Try to quit drinking and cannot.
  • Increased tolerance.
  • Withdraw from friends and family.
  • Lose interest in activities once enjoyed.
  • Drinking more and more as tolerance increases.
  • Mood swings.
  • Lie about how much is being consumed.
  • Decline in hygiene.
  • Irritability
  • Blackouts
  • Problems with concentrating.
  • Sleep disturbance.
  • Alcohol cravings.
  • When not drinking withdrawal symptoms emerge.

Clearly, the more AUD signs present, the more severe the AUD is.

Dual Diagnosis Treatment

Someone struggling with both an AUD and ICD will need a program that provides dual diagnosis treatment. This means that mental health support is offered as well as the treatment for an AUD. Treatment for a dual diagnosis is complex, and includes these elements:

  • Detox support. Before treatment can proceed, the person must first complete alcohol detox.
  • Psychotherapy. Evidence-based therapies are a core treatment element for a dual diagnosis. Therapies that help both the ICD and the AUD include CBT, DBT, and CM.
  • Group therapy. Group support is central to the rehab program. These small group sessions offer peers to bond while in treatment through sharing with each other.
  • Medication. SSRIs may be prescribed for managing the symptoms of the ICD.
  • Recovery meetings. 12-step or SMART Recovery meetings are a source of social support and also learning from others.
  • Psycho-social skills. Treatment for a dual diagnosis includes preparing the client to manage stressors. Classes teach them how to better manage their mood states, how to resolve conflicts, and how to tamp down anger.
  • Complementary activities. A holistic approach to dual diagnosis treatment includes experiential activities such as mindfulness meditation, art and music therapy, therapeutic massage, acupuncture, and yoga.

Bodhi Addiction Treatment and Wellness for Dual Diagnosis

Bodhi Addiction Treatment is a recovery program that helps people overcome alcohol use disorder with a mental health issue such as impulse control. Our program is a holistic one, helping clients achieve both sobriety and mental wellness. For more details about our program, please reach out today at (877) 328-1968.

 

spouse of an addict

Marriage can suffer greatly when one partner is struggling with addiction. Spouses are deeply affected by the other’s substance use, to the point that real damage can be done. Substance abuse puts so much pressure on a marriage on top of normal daily demands. So much, in fact, that sometimes the union will not be able to withstand it.

In a marriage both partners play a role in caring for each other and the marriage as a whole. When substance abuse creeps in it can cause strife, broken trust bonds, money problems, and legal issues and more. To preserve the marriage, it is essential that the partner receive the help he or she requires to break free from the addiction.

Couples can support each other as one goes through treatment and begins recovery. Along with therapy and other treatment elements, it is also good for couples to learn about how to avoid co-dependency. Setting healthy boundaries and learning how to share feelings are also helpful aspects of a couple’s journey to wellness.

How Addiction Affects Partners

When a spouse is battling a substance use problem it affects every aspect of married life. Not only does the substance abuse create a chasm in the marriage, but it also fosters anger, pain, and resentment. A household in which one partner is engaged in substance abuse may feature some very harsh effects. These may include:

  • Fighting. Strife in the home is common when a spouse has a drug or alcohol problem. The substance abuse, and the effects of the substance itself, can lead to intense fights and even violence.
  • Money problems. The spouse may end up losing their job due to the substance use, which can result in money issues. Any money that is there may go to fund the substance abuse. Bills go unpaid and this can lead to housing insecurity.
  • Deceit. The addicted spouse will begin to tell lies and deceive their mate to cover up his or her substance problem. These actions can cause trust bonds to be broken.
  • Enabling. When a spouse is an addict, the other will often begin enabling his or her substance use disorder (SUD). They may cover for the spouse, lie for them, and do the things the spouse should be doing themselves.
  • Isolation. As the substance problem worsens, the couple may begin to avoid social events and gatherings. This is due to feeling self-conscious about the effects of the SUD out in public.

How a Parent’s Addiction Affects Children

It isn’t only the spouse who suffers due to substance abuse in the home. About 1 in 8 children are living with at least one parent that has an SUD, reports SAMHSA. Children are deeply impacted by a parent’s addiction. Some of these effects include:

  • Kids suffer from a lack of structure, even chaos that results from a parent’s SUD.
  • The children often struggle with behavior problems in school.
  • There are mental health effects.
  • Sometimes the parent with the SUD will even neglect or abuse the child.
  • Kids may begin to feel they are the parent, handling tasks that should belong to the parent.
  • A child is often filled with feelings of shame about the parent, and won’t invite friends over to the house.
  • Having a parent with an SUD is a risk factor for the child to begin using substances themselves later in life.

Knowing When a Partner is Developing an Addiction

Each couple’s story is unique. In some cases, it may not even be known that a partner has an SUD. Some spouses manage to hide the signs for a while before it becomes clear there is a problem. These are called high functioning addicts. Some of the red flags of an SUD include:

  • Finding the substance or paraphernalia in the home or car.
  • They lie about how much they are drinking.
  • They can’t limit their intake of a substance.
  • They stop paying bills or taking care of daily tasks.
  • They have angry outbursts.
  • Misses work often, even wanting the other spouse to cover for them.
  • Seems obsessed about having the substance in the house.
  • Neglects their appearance.
  • Has mounting legal troubles.
  • Has mood swings.
  • Shows signs of withdrawals when substance wears off.

Many times when a spouse of an addict confronts the other about the substance abuse they will be met with denial or excuses. Even with these clear signs of an SUD they will deny they have a problem, at least at first. Don’t give up. Do some research about treatment programs and check into your insurance plan to see what is covered. In time, the spouse will hopefully decide to get the help he or she needs to tackle the SUD.

Treatment Solutions for Couples

When a partner is struggling with an SUD, there is help to be found. Treatment involves a multi-phased system that begins with detox. After the spouse completes detox they will move into the treatment phase of recovery.

Treatment will not only include therapy, classes, and other treatments, but also couples or family therapy. During these sessions, couples are guided towards learning better ways to communicate, to settle conflicts, and to manage emotions. Partners are coached on how to set healthy boundaries, and how to support their spouse in recovery. This support is crucial to the partner’s success.

Life after rehab will require patience. As the spouse gets stronger in recovery they will earn the other’s trust again. It just takes some time to prove that they are truly committed to staying sober. And as the saying goes, actions speak louder than words.

Bodhi Addiction Helps Couples Restore Wellness

Bodhi Addiction Treatment and Wellness treats the whole person, not just the disease. We believe that the mind has a strong impact on a person’s ability to break the cycle of addiction. At Bodhi we guide clients to explore their emotions as well as learn new coping skills to sustain sobriety. For more detail about our program, please call us today at (877) 328-1968.