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What Is Alcohol Abuse?

You may be asking yourself “How do I know if I have a drinking problem?” Many suffering from alcohol abuse don’t know the severity of their problem, leading to further self-destruction. To put it simply, alcohol abuse is the pattern of drinking alcohol in excess. This condition can be demonstrated by an uncontrollable desire to drink, drinking in inappropriate situations, an inability to relax without a drink, and continuing to drink in spite of obvious negative consequences. 

According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) there are 14.4 million adults in the United States that have an alcohol abuse disorder (2018), making alcoholism the top substance addiction in the country. Countless lives are impacted by this disorder. Families get destroyed, relationships are torn apart, lives are lost when drunk drivers recklessly get on the road, careers and income opportunities are discarded. Alcohol abuse doesn’t lead to positive consequences. 

Are you or a loved one dealing with alcoholism? 90210 Recovery isn’t here to lay blame at your feet. We’re here to help you overcome this disorder and unlock the best version of yourself. Alcoholism is beatable, but you need an approach that custom-designed for your situation and psyche.

Alcohol has the capacity to be very dangerous if being misused. Almost every area of life can be affected by alcohol abuse. Physically, alcohol abuse can cause medical issues such as fatty liver, alcohol induced hepatitis and cirrhosis. Alcohol has also been known to cause high blood pressure and has been linked to heart disease. Mentally, alcohol abuse is linked to conditions such as anxiety and depression and can make the symptoms of these conditions worse in individuals who have been previously diagnosed. In individuals who consume a heavy amount of alcohol for a significant amount of time, it can lead to a condition of the brain called  Wernicke-Korsakoff Syndrome. This serious condition causes symptoms of confusion, eye movement paralysis and issues with the coordination of muscles. Also, this condition can cause psychosis and difficulty in memory and learning. 

Most individuals using alcohol in an unhealthy manner also experience issues in their social life. Significant others and family members may begin to distance themselves from the individual due to behavior while under the influence, friends may come around less and less and the individual becomes isolated from a social support system previously in place due to these factors or because the drinking has become so frequent that they choose to be alone. Unfortunately, this isolation typically contributes to an increase of anxiety and depression leading to more consumption of alcohol. 

Unfortunately, the most extreme consequence of alcohol addiction is death. This can be due to an overdose, incidents that occurred while drinking due to poor judgement or withdrawal symptoms from trying to stop drinking on your own.

What Are The Consequences Of Alcoholism?

How Do I Get Sober?

Overcoming alcoholism is an uphill battle when it’s done alone. The more you drink, the more your body develops a dependency. Drinking, for many alcoholics, is seen as a relief from the struggles of their day-to-day lives. When you stop drinking, your body can experience withdrawal symptoms, making it all the more difficult to stay sober. 

90210 Recovery is the best LA alcohol treatment center because of our ability to adapt to what our clients need. There is no cookie-cutter solution to alcoholism. Instead, we must dig deep, investigate the context and motivations surrounding your disorder, uncover potential co-occurring health issues, and formulate a plan in keeping you sober for the long term. 

Upon admittance, you’ll undergo a medical examination, see a therapist, and get assigned with a licensed caseworker. Your detox will be supervised by our MD, and you’ll be monitored by our nursing staff to ensure your safety. If you’re currently facing problems with alcohol, you may be wondering “How is alcohol withdrawal treated?” We ensure our clients detox safely, and that includes the management of your withdrawal symptoms. If your withdrawal symptoms are severe, we’ll administer detox protocols and comfort medications to ease the process.

Throughout your stay, our mission will be to build you up and to help you see that life offers so much than what’s in a liquor bottle. You’ll enjoy staying in a positive, vibrant environment where you’re free to express yourself and become connected with who you really are. Our Beverly Hills alcohol treatment center will help eliminate the crippling hold of alcohol, giving you the freedom to take control and live as you truly should.

Ways To Tell You Might Be Struggling With Alcoholism

There are many warning signs to help you evaluate whether you may be abusing alcohol or have an alcohol abuse disorder. The most common “warning signs” that you may be in danger of alcohol abuse include:

  • Having blackout or lapses in memory when under the influence
  • Irritability or extreme mood swings that can happen under the influence or when alcohol is not available
  • Drinking instead of taking care of other responsibilities
  • Using excuses for why you drink, such as to deal with stress or relax
  • Drinking when you’re alone or being dishonest about how much you are drinking
  • Experiencing hangovers
  • Loss of interest in enjoyable activities
  • Continue drinking despite negative consequences
Withdrawal Symptoms From Alcohol
Sometimes the body becomes used to alcohol and learns to live with it and compensates for it. This can become an issue where the body becomes dependent on the substance, basically it needs alcohol to continue functioning and to continue feeling “normal”. Some of the ways you can tell if you are dependent on alcohol is through the withdrawal symptoms associated with stopping the use of alcohol. Stopping alcohol alone when you are dependent or have been drinking heavily can be extremely dangerous. Some of these symptoms include:
  • Tremors (shakiness, mostly in the hands but can be in other places as well)
  • Anxiety
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Headache
  • Inability to sleep
  • Confusion
  • Hallucinations
  • Seizures
  • Death

If you or a loved one has experienced anything mentioned above, we can help! Please give us a call to help you on your recovery path and assist you or your loved on in safely and comfortably ending the cycle. We look forward to your call. 1-844-462-8571

What Is Substance Abuse/Addiction?

Heroin, methamphetamine, opioids, benzodiazepines, stimulants, marijuana: Addiction to these drugs can destroy every aspect of your life. It can lead to loss of income, destruction of your relationships, turmoil in the family, deterioration of your mental and physical health. The negative consequences are too long to list, and the upside doesn’t exist. 

If you’re reading this, it’s likely you or a loved one needs a change. 90210 Recovery is an alcohol treatment center Beverly Hills that’s focused on only one thing: You. Everyone’s struggle with substance abuse is different, and we take a careful, adaptive approach to every client that walks through our doors. You’re entering a safe haven that’s secluded from the chaos of your old environment, receiving guidance and structure from world-class psychiatrists and MDs, and reclaiming the essence of who you are from a gamut of holistic therapies. Substance abuse treatment at our facility is a chance to start over.

Substances
  • Stimulants
  • Opiates/Opioids
  • Prescription Drugs
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Stimulant Prescription Drugs
  • Opioid Prescription Drugs
  • Marijuana

What Are Stimulants?

Stimulants are a class of drugs that cause stimulation in the brain and other bodily functions. They have an effect of making people more alert, confident, energized and focused. For example, caffeine is considered a stimulant. However, illicit use and abuse of prescription and illegal stimulants can cause an over-stimulation in the mind and body, contributing to feelings of anxiety, aggression and paranoia. In some cases, the over-stimulation can cause seizures, stroke, heart attack, comas and death. Physical symptoms of over-stimulation can include stomach cramps, headaches and shaking known as tremors.

Types of Stimulants:

  • Cocaine
  • Crack
  • Methamphetamines
  • Amphetamines (Such as Adderall and Vyvance)

Signs of Stimulant Withdrawal:

  • Depression and feeling unhappy
  • Anxiety
  • Jitters
  • Chills
  • Irritability
  • Hallucinations
  • Paranoia
  • Fatigue and hypersomnia (sleeping too much)
  • Increase appetite
  • Body Aches
  • Vivid and unpleasant dreams

What Are Opiates and Opioids?

Opiates are substances which are derived from the drug coming from the opium poppy plant. Whereas opioids are a broader category and include opiates and any substance, natural or synthetic, that acts on the opioid receptors in the brain. While there is a distinction between the two, the effects of both are similar in terms of effect and addiction potential. Currently, there is an opioid crisis in the United States and the effects have been alarming. In 2018, over 67,000 people lost their lives to overdoses, with 70% of those overdoses involved illicit and prescription opioids (CDC, 2020). Effects for opioid use include slowed breathing, drowsiness, constipation, nausea, coma and death. Withdrawal symptoms of opioid use are very severe and difficult to manage. Medical detox for comfort and safety are recommended when the decision to stop using the following substances is made:

Types of Opiates:

  • Opium
  • Morphine
  • Codeine
  • Heroin

Types of Opioids:

  • Oxycodone
  • Oxycontin
  • Methadone
  • Percocet
  • Vicodin
  • Demerol
  • Dilaudid
  • Fentanyl
  • Opana

Signs of Opioid Withdrawal:

  • Agitation
  • Anxiety
  • Muscle aches / restless legs
  • Runny noise
  • Sweating (hot and cold sweats)
  • GI upset including stomach cramping, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting
  • Insomnia
  • Goosebumps
  • Tearing
  • Fatigue and weakness

Non-opioid prescription drugs of abuse vary in terms of effect and withdrawal. Prescription drug abuse affects about 16 million Americans. Their popularity is due to accessibility (you can find them in any medicine cabinet) and social acceptance (being that it is not illicit). However, having a prescription in your possession that is not yours is still a crime and selling a prescription made to you is also a crime. Some of the risks associated with prescription drug abuse are greater than those of other illicit substances and can cause death from overdose and withdrawal.

One of the most commonly abused prescription medications is in the class of benzodiazepines. Historically, these medications have been used to help with anxiety and sleep disorders, due to their sedating effect. They are an effective medication in managing symptoms of anxiety and panic disorder. Long-term effects of benzodiazepines include memory problems, anxiety, tremors and insomnia. However, when benzodiazepines are abused, it can result in weakness, blurred vision, drowsiness, poor decision making and risk taking behavior and mood changes. When combined with alcohol, blacking out is a frequent side effect. In addition, the withdrawal effects of benzodiazepines are extremely dangerous and can lead to death. 

Types of Benzodiazepines:

  • Xanax
  • Valium
  • Klonopin
  • Ativan

Signs of Withdrawal From Benzodiazepines:

  • Problems concentrating
  • Insomnia
  • Irritability and anxiety
  • Panic Attacks
  • Shakiness (tremors)
  • Vomiting
  • Heart Palpitations
  • Seizures
  • Death
  • Hallucinations

Most of the time, stimulant prescription drugs are used as medication for ADHD, including Vyvanse and Adderall, and occasionally for narcolepsy. Some steroids are used to treat illnesses and mute symptoms of illnesses such as the flu temporarily. Abuse of stimulant prescription medication can have a significant amount of negative side effects. (See Stimulant Section for more information)

These medications have been used to treat conditions of pain, such as after surgery, chronic pain and other uncomfortable procedures. However, the addiction potential is high for these medications. Opioid prescription drugs include Vicodin, Percocet, Oxycodone, Dilaudid and more. (See Opiates/Opioids Section for more information)

What is Marijuana?

Marijuana has many names such as herb, weed, pot, grass, ganja and Mary Jane, to name a few.  It is one of the most abused substances in the United States. Currently, different states have been legalizing the substance for medical and recreational use. States differ on regulations at this time. Marijuana is extremely accessible due to this, however, there are some large concerns with the substance. Over the decades, marijuana has become significantly more potent, contributing to its abuse and addiction potential. People who begin using in adolescence are at a higher risk from developing an addiction. Marijuana negatively affects the areas of the brain associated with attention, decision making, coordination  and memory. There are also mood regulation issues associated with the use of marijuana. Even more concerning, in younger individuals, marijuana can negatively impact crucial connections from being formed in the brain. Research has shown evidence that individuals using the more potent strains of marijuana are subjected to disorientation, paranoia and are at a higher risk of developing long-term mental health conditions like schizophrenia.

Types of Marijuana:

  • Indica
  • Sativa
  • Hybrids

Symptoms of Marijuana Withdrawal:

  • Decreased appetite
  • Anxiety
  • Irregular moods
  • Irritability / Aggression
  • Stomach problems
  • Depression
  • Chills and Sweats
  • Insomnia / Vivid dreams and nightmares
  • Restlessness
  • Headaches
Common Behaviors Related to Substance Abuse
Substances come in all different forms with differing effects. However, the signs that you or a loved one may have a substance abuse issue look similar across the symptoms associated with an addiction. Below is a list of common signs that you or a loved one may be in danger. This is not an exhaustive list. These traits do not have to be present for substance abuse to exist. They are guidelines of common traits associated with substance abuse disorders:
  • Requiring more of the substance to achieve the desired effect
  • Taking a medication longer than needed to address a health concern
  • Feeling emotions like anxiety and depression when you stop taking the substance
  • Committing a significant amount of time to thinking about and finding the substance
  • You cannot stop the use of substances, even though there is a desire to do so
  • Setting limits for how much you can use and consistently use more than the boundary you set
  • Borrowing or stealing money or items to buy substances
  • “Doctor Shopping” meaning going to different doctors to get prescriptions
  • Family, friends and coworkers complain about your behaviors and how you’ve changed
  • Attempting to hide the substances or their effect on you

At the heart of any substance abuse disorder is an underlying condition that’s not being addressed. Our Beverly Hills alcohol treatment program gets to the very bottom of this by dissecting your psyche, uncovering past traumas, and implementing a plan that can lead to long-lasting sobriety.

Drug abuse will lead to a dependency on that drug. Eventually, you’ll feel the urge to take that drug to feel normal, and if you don’t take it you’ll feel certain withdrawal symptoms. When you’re quitting drugs and getting sober, this you’ll need to eliminate that dependency through detoxification. 

When people contact us, we receive questions like “is detoxing at home dangerous?”. The answer to that question is a resounding “yes.” When you detox from hard drugs, your body can potentially experience harsh withdrawal symptoms. And if you’re not medically supervised, withdrawal can lead to seizures and death. Detoxing at home is not an option if you want to successfully quit using drugs. 

The best decision you can make is to enter a drug addiction treatment center. Upon admittance at 90210 Recovery, you’ll see our MD and medical team, and you’ll undergo a complete blood analysis test to confirm the level of drugs in your system. Our MD will then create a custom medical protocol for your detox, and our 24/7 nursing staff will monitor your vitals during the process. Depending on the severity of your symptoms, we may prescribe certain comfort medications like suboxone. 

Drug abuse isn’t the end of your story. When you walk through our doors, you’ll receive superb care and quality therapy that will dig into the root of your issues.

How Do I Stop Using Drugs?

Substances can have short term and long term consequences, and like alcohol, the consequences of an addiction to substances can have dire results.  Physical ramifications of substance abuse in terms of short term effects range depending on substances used. The most common include effects on heart rate, regulation of body temperature, appetite, heart attack, stroke and overdose. The long-term health effects of substance abuse include heart and lung disease, HIV/AIDS, hepatitis and cancer. Mental short-term effects include irritability, mood swings, depression, anxiety and psychosis. In some cases, conditions like depression, anxiety and other mental health diagnoses continue and need treatment to be stabilized. Other potential long-term mental consequences include changes in the ability to experience pleasure, ability to handle and address the discomfort that comes from stress and being overwhelmed and impacts learning and memory. This is because substance addiction can alter  the brain over time, making it difficult to regain certain skills and experiences.

Behavioral consequences of substance use have a wide range as well. Consequences in this area are mostly due to poor decision making while under the influence. Legal consequences of abusing substances include arrests for possession, intoxication, driving while intoxicated, possession of paraphernalia, sales of prescription medications and illicit substances and other illegal behaviors people with substance abuse engage in to support themselves and their addiction. Social consequences include abandonment from friends and loved ones, unwilling to support the individual while they are abusing substances. Isolation can feed an addiction and cause the individual to seek “like minded” or “fair weather” friends.This can result in putting oneself in compromising positions and dangerous situations, due to negative affiliations. Trauma can result from these experiences and contribute to ongoing substance abuse.

The greatest consequence to substance abuse is death. Death can occur from a number of situations frequently experienced by individuals who abuse substances including overdose, substance-related deaths such as drug deals gone wrong or driving while intoxicated and withdrawal of certain substances. Managing an addiction can be exhausting and feel hopeless. Let us help! If you or a loved one is experiencing any of the above consequences and would like to speak to a member of the team, please contact us so we can answer any questions you may have.

What Are Some Consequences Of Substance Abuse?
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