Addiction Medicine Feed

Looking for Opioid Treatment?

With the current crisis across the nation regarding Opioids there are many programs that have been successfully dealing with Opioid Use Disorders. The process begins with reaching out for help from an addiction treatment program. Addiction treatment centers that have a medical detoxification program are well equipped with the ability to safely detox and individual from opioids, and they do this under the care of medical professionals.

How to ask for help?

Depending on your location and state that you are located will depend on the local providers available to you. You can contact the government agency SAMHSA which is the Substance Abuse Mental Health Service Administration, and they have a wonderful search feature to help you find local providers. Many addiction treatment programs are in other states. Sometimes getting out of a specific area for confidentiality purposes and other reasons like temptations to drug dealers, using friends, or mental cues that make it difficult to stop opioids is another option.

The treatment you can Afford?

If you have no funding and need indigent care, you can contact inside your state the state funding resources in your state. Usually, your state will have an agency that is dedicated to overseeing the state funding beds available. Start by doing an internet search for substance use treatment state-funded treatment. Look for government websites in your state that are either mental health or substance use disorder departments. You can contact SAMHSA for a phone number.

Treatment Centers that accept Private Pay?

If you can pay privately, you can find very affordable medical detoxification programs and residential treatment programs. These programs are high-quality treatment programs that are dedicated to helping you get free from opioids. Check out some of our sponsored advertisements for these types of treatment programs if you need treatment now. We only allow vetted safe and effective treatment providers to advertise on our site. All programs are licensed and accredited.

Treatment Centers that accept private insurance?

If you have private insurance, you can contact a treatment provider and discuss with that treatment provider if they accept your insurance. There are in-network and out of network treatment providers. Its all about how much you can pay out of pocket. So, keep in mind that In-network cuts your out of pocket expenses on your side and out of network you must pay more.

The main thing is to ask for help?

 

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Do you need alcohol or drug treatment? Is Treatment an Option for You?

Do you need alcohol or drug treatment? If you are struggling with alcohol or drugs and feel an intense desire to do something different with your life, then medical detoxification or treatment may be an option that can turn your life around and set you on a path to freedom.

Everyday people get to a place in their lives where the alcohol or drugs quit working for them. The substances that they relied on to help them cope with life around them begins to stop working chemically, and these individuals experience a situation where they must take more and more of the same substance to produce the desired effect. The problem is the body was never equipped to handle larger amounts of substances into the body. The higher dosages create a negative biological response to the increased amount of substances taken. The body compensates to handle the new higher amount of substances by creating a tolerance which brings about a higher amount of substances needed to produce the desired effect. Hence the addictive cycle is in full motion.

Understanding-the-Cycle-of-Addiction_01

Treatment for alcohol or drugs is the most logical choice for someone with a substance use disorder. However, to get help, one must ask for help for their disorder. Reaching out to an alcohol or drug treatment center is one option or contacting an addiction professional for help is another option. The main thing is once you recognize that a problem exists from substances in your life then the next step is to ask for help.

Here are some tips to help you find addiction treatment programs:

Tips for Finding Help

  1. If you have medical insurance contact your insurance carrier to find out if you are covered for substance use disorder treatment. If you do not have insurance, then you need to determine if you can privately pay for alcohol or drug treatment. If that is not an option, then you will need to reach out to your State Health Service department or related division in your state. They often have websites designed to help you find a treatment provider. Many states offer indigent treatment.
  2. Try and find a provider that is Licensed in the state and accredited by The Joint Commission or accredited by CARF.
  3. Pick a treatment provider that offers screenings and assessments and focus on evidence-based treatment approaches. Experienced treatment centers often operate from evidence-based approaches.

Remember Treatment is designed to help you become free from alcohol and drugs. However, you must make the first approach and ask for help.

 

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Drug to treat alcohol use disorder shows promise among drinkers with high stress

Thursday, September 29, 2016

 

NIH-funded multi-site clinical trial suggests that smokers may also benefit.

 

A new medication that targets part of the brain’s stress system may help reduce alcohol use in people with alcohol use disorder (AUD), according to a new study by researchers at the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), part of the National Institutes of Health.

“We’re committed to developing new medications to provide effective therapy to a broader spectrum of people with AUDs.

George F. Koob, Ph.D., Director, NIAAA

“Medications have become an important tool for treating alcohol use disorders, but current medications are not effective for all people with AUDs,” noted NIAAA Director George F. Koob, Ph.D. “We’re committed to developing new medications to provide effective therapy to a broader spectrum of people with AUDs.”

As reported online in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology, researchers led by Raye Litten, Ph.D., acting director of the NIAAA Division of Medications Development, conducted a randomized clinical trial of a new compound, called ABT-436, designed to block the effects of vasopressin, a neuropeptide produced in the hypothalamus of the brain. 

“Vasopressin helps to regulate the pituitary adrenal axis and other brain circuits involved in emotion,” explained Dr. Litten. “As such, it plays a role in regulating stress, anxiety, and their interaction with AUD.”

Dr. Litten, first author Megan Ryan and their NIAAA colleagues worked with NIAAA’s multi-center Clinical Investigations Group, to recruit 144 alcohol-dependent adult men and women for the 12-week study. During a 28-day baseline period, female participants consumed at least 28 drinks per week, while male participants consumed at least 35 drinks per week. Participants were then randomized to receive either placebo tablets or ones containing the ABT-436 compound. Researchers monitored participants’ alcohol consumption, as well as their mood changes and smoking habits, as these are known to co-vary with alcohol consumption.

Researchers found that participants receiving ABT-436 experienced more days of alcohol abstinence than those receiving the placebo. In particular, participants who reported high levels of stress appeared to respond better to ABT-436, in that both the frequency of their drinking and the number of heavy drinking days they experienced decreased.

“Our findings suggest that potential future studies with drugs targeting vasopressin blockade should focus on populations of people with AUD who also report high levels of stress,” said first author Ryan, a clinical project manager in the NIAAA Division of Medications Development.

Smokers may be another population that could benefit from ABT-436. In addition to its effects on alcohol consumption, study participants receiving the new compound   experienced a reduction in smoking. The researchers suspect that ABT-436 might be targeting the same areas in the brain that relate to withdrawal and stress, and, in the process, influencing both tobacco and alcohol use disorders. Additional research is needed to determine if that is the case.

The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), part of the National Institutes of Health, is the primary U.S. agency for conducting and supporting research on the causes, consequences, prevention, and treatment of alcohol use disorder, and alcohol problems. NIAAA also disseminates research findings to general, professional, and academic audiences. Additional alcohol research information and publications are available at www.niaaa.nih.gov.

About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation's medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.

 

 

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Texas Drug Rehabs Innovative Thinking

Texas Based Drug Rehab Summer Sky is changing the face of addiction treatment. They are on course to launch some of the newest evidence based addiction practices as well as cutting edge recovery support systems in 2011. Traditional Drug Rehabs in the last five years have fallen behind the curve, when it comes to advancement of addiction treatment practices. Summer Sky who has been known to introduce new and innovative addiction practices is again making progress in the area of evidence based treatment practices. In 2009 Summer Sky begin the process of building a treatment team that is focused on quality of care and results. They introduced the first Texas 30 day model of treatment to incorporate Equine Therapy, Music Therapy, Art Therapy, Aquatic Therapy. This type of addiction expansion was unheard of for a 30 day treatment program. It was usually the practice of 90 day or long- term drug rehabs that offered this type of services. It  did not take long for other Texas Drug Rehabs to begin the process of setting up programs that implemented this type of therapy practices. In 2010 Summer Sky once again pushed the status quo and implemented the first Recovery Team into and addiction treatment program in Texas.

This has allowed the clinical team to focus  on solid clinical services and allow the recovery team to work with the clients on individual recovery, just like it is going to be when they get out of treatment. The lines have become clear for the clients on what the 12-steps are all about and how they fit into their life. 

The Recovery Team and Clinical Team collaborate on many aspects of and individuals recovery and treatment.  Also  the facility implemented Massage therapy and Yoga to the programs. This is usually reserved for luxury facilities.

If you are looking for a rehab center that is making a difference in the Addiction Field Summer Sky is to place to go for great treatment.

 

 

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New Pain Medication with No Addictive Properties

The addiction treatment community has wrestled for years fighting addictions and pain. Programs have developed different approaches to treating those with chronic pain issues. It is a difficult and a delicate issue that concerns many in the medical and addiction treatment industry. How to properly detoxify a patient and treat the underline pain that the individual is suffering from can be very tricky. The patient will present for drug treatment with the desire to be removed from pain medications, however the fear from the patient of the pain that will present as soon as medications are removed from the body becomes a barrier for the individual seeking treatment. It is a double edge sword and if not properly done, can create unnecessary pain for the patient.

 

A powerful new painkiller, which was developed on the basis of the research conducted at Stony Brook University and with no apparent side effects or addictive qualities, may now be only a year or two from the consumer market.

 

"This offers a major paradigm shift in the control of pain," declares Dr. Simon Halegoua, Professor of Neurobiology & Behavior at Stony Brook who in the 1990s, teamed up with fellow Stony Brook professors Dr. Gail Mandel and Dr. Paul Brehm to identify a novel sodium ion channel involved in the transmission of pain. They predicted that a drug aimed at blocking this channel, PN1/Nav 1.7, would control pain. PN1 (Peripheral Neuron 1), is uniquely expressed in peripheral nerves such as those involved in pain transduction.

 

When a patient is given an opiate like morphine, pain signals are still transmitted from sensory nerves to the central nervous system. Morphine action throughout the brain reduces and alters pain perception, but it also impairs judgment and results in drug dependence," explains Halegoua, also director of the Center for Nervous System Disorders at Stony Brook University. "With drugs targeting the PN1/Nav1.7 sodium ion channel, the pain signals would not be transmitted, even by the sensory nerves. And since the central nervous system is taken out of the equation, there would be no side effects and no addictive qualities."

 

The potential for such drugs is enormous -- the reduction or elimination of pain for patients with cancer, arthritis, migraine headaches, muscle pain, pain from burns, and pain from other debilitating diseases.

 

He notes that drugs in both oral and topical ointment forms, based on the research he conducted in a basement laboratory at Stony Brook with Mandel, a molecular biologist, and Brehm, an electro physiologist, are currently in Phase II clinical trials in England and Canada.

The Research Foundation of the State University of New York is the holder of the various patents originating from the work of the Stony Brook researchers. Icagen Inc., now in partnership with Pfizer, holds the exclusive license to these patents and has announced their own drug has now entered Phase I clinical trials in the U.S.

 

Story Source:

The above story is reprinted (with editorial adaptations by Sober Sky) from materials provided by Stony Brook University.

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Addiction Treatment Centers in Texas

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Addiction Treatment Centers are located around the State of Texas. Many great treatment programs exist. Each program is unique and offers different types of approaches to the treatment of addiction. Programs offer different levels of care. Some of the types of facilities that are present in Texas include inpatient, residential, short-term, long-term, and intensive out-patient programs.  Some programs have detox programs attached to the treatment programs and some do not provide this level of care.

Effective Addiction Treatment

Addiction treatment centers offer a variety of modalities that are effective for individuals that need treatment. Some of the available treatment modalities that are most common are medication and behavioral therapy and when used together this can increase the likely hood of someone getting free from an addiction. Detoxification is normally the first approach to addiction treatment and then is usually, followed by treatment. Some programs offer extensive relapse prevention therapies; others are brief in this area of treatment. It is recommended that individuals that are experiencing withdrawal symptoms, seek a program that has a medical detoxification program attached to the facility, or enter into a detox program, before entering into other types of treatment programs. Most effective addiction treatment programs, offer a continuum of care that includes a customized treatment regimen. The focus of the care should be in the area of life, medical and mental health. Programs that offer individual or group drug counseling are very helpful to individuals. Cognitive behavioral therapy, Multidimensional family therapy, Motivational interviewing, and programs that offer strong 12-step focuses are effective at the treatment of addiction. Overall the approach of the addiction treatment program should utilize many different approaches and modalities to be effective.

Access to addiction treatment in Texas is not equal to all individuals in the State of Texas. Texas has some very great programs and some are even nationally recognized treatment programs. However, not everyone can get access to treatment in the programs in Texas. The sad reality is that unless you carry a health insurance plan or have the ability to pay for treatment out of your pocket, then finding treatment in Texas can be very difficult. Texas does have State funded treatment programs for those that do not have insurance or the ability to pay for treatment privately. The State funded treatment programs have limited beds and often require a long waiting list that an individual has to be on, before a treatment bed becomes available.

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Popping a Pill Can Help Some Alcoholics Curb Drinking

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ScienceDaily (Dec. 17, 2010) — A little-used medication can help treat alcoholism, an updated review of studies confirms. At any given time, about 5 percent of the population suffers from an addiction to alcohol, often with devastating consequences to work, family, friends and health. Twelve-step programs have been the mainstay for helping alcoholics to quit drinking, but a significant number of people who try these programs do not find them helpful or suffer relapses.

The Cochrane review finds that the medication naltrexone -- brand names are Depade and ReVia -- when combined with counseling or interventions like Alcoholics Anonymous, can help cut the risk of heavy drinking in patients who are dependent on alcohol.

Naltrexone works by blocking the pleasurable feelings, or "high," a person gets from drinking alcohol, thereby reducing motivation to drink. Naltrexone can be taken daily as a pill and is available as a long-acting injection.

The review was published by the Cochrane Collaboration, an international organization that evaluates medical research. Systematic reviews draw evidence-based conclusions about medical practice after considering both the content and quality of existing medical trials on a topic.

"Hundreds of drugs have been tried for relapse prevention [in alcoholism] and basically all others have failed," said Michael Soyka, M.D., senior author of the review. "From a clinical point of view, there are few pharmacologic options for the treatment of alcohol dependence, so it is important to study those options that look promising." Soyka and lead review author Suanne Roesner are associated with the psychiatric hospital at the University of Munich.

Alcohol dependence is different from alcohol abuse or misuse. The symptoms of alcohol dependence include craving for alcohol, an inability to control drinking, the presence of withdrawal symptoms if one tries to quit and tolerance -- the need to increase alcohol amounts to feel the same effect. People who only abuse alcohol and are not dependent on it have no trouble controlling their drinking, once they decide to do so.

Soyka and colleagues examined the results of 50 previously published high-quality studies on naltrexone and alcohol dependence. Overall, the studies enrolled nearly 7,800 patients diagnosed with alcohol dependence. Of these, about 4,200 patients took naltrexone or a similar drug called nalmefene. The rest of the patients took a placebo or had some other type of treatment. Treatment with naltrexone ranged from four weeks to a year, with most patients receiving about 12 weeks of treatment. Most patients also received counseling.

Researchers found that patients who received naltrexone were 17 percent less likely to return to heavy drinking than were patients who received a placebo treatment. "That would mean that naltrexone can be expected to prevent heavy drinking in one out of eight patients who would otherwise have returned to a heavy drinking pattern," Soyka said.

Naltrexone also increased the number of people who were able to stay abstinent by 4 percent.

While at first glance that might not seem like a miracle cure for alcoholism, Soyka said that the effectiveness of naltrexone is on par with medications used for other psychiatric conditions.

"Naltrexone is moderately effective in reducing alcohol intake. It's about as effective as antidepressants in depressive disorders," he said. "From a safety point of view, there are few safety concerns. Nausea is the most frequent side effect."

Carlton Erickson, Ph.D., director of the Addiction Science Research and Education Center at the University of Texas in Austin, says naltrexone can help a person with alcohol dependence move toward the goal of abstinence.

"Anytime you reduce the severity of drinking, the individual is more open to treatment for abstinence," he said. "It's almost like putting them through a series of steps if you can get them to cut down; once they start to cut down they are more likely to become abstinent with continued treatment and continued exposure to 12-step programs." Erickson is not associated with the review or any of its authors.

Despite its possible benefits in treating alcohol dependency, naltrexone is not widely used in the United States or elsewhere, Erickson said. Some addiction specialists fear that the widespread use of naltrexone or other medications will result in patients not receiving the counseling or psychological interventions they need.

There is also a lingering attitude that the treatment of alcohol dependency must rely solely on psychological or spiritual methods.

"People in 12-step programs typically don't believe in medications for the treatment of alcoholism," Erickson said. "Therefore they are unlikely to accept anyone into their 12-step meetings who is on a medication like naltrexone. Secondly, they would not want to accept it for themselves, unless a physician talked them into it as part of their treatment plan."

In addition, most large alcohol treatment centers, with the exception of Hazelden, do not advocate for the use of medications in the management of addiction, he said.

However, Erickson said that naltrexone is FDA-approved only as an adjunct to abstinence-based therapies, like Alcoholics Anonymous. "Naltrexone is not something you give to someone who says 'I want to stop drinking, give me a pill.' Naltrexone is only a helper to that process. The medication itself is not a magic bullet."

The review discloses that two authors received speaker/consultancy/advisory board honoraria from pharmaceutical companies.

Story Source:

The above story is reprinted (with editorial adaptations by ScienceDaily staff) from materials provided by Health Behavior News Service, part of the Center for Advancing Health. The original article was written by Katherine Kahn.

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Novel Vaccine That Produces Strong Immunity Against Cocaine High Poised To Move Quickly Into Human Trials

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Researchers from The Scripps Research Institute, Weill Cornell Medical College, and Cornell University have produced a long-lasting anti-cocaine immunity in mice by giving them a unique vaccine that combines bits of the common cold virus with a particle that mimics cocaine. 

In their study, published January 4, 2011, in the advanced online edition ofMolecular Therapy, the researchers say this novel strategy might be the first to offer cocaine addicts a fairly simple way to break and reverse their habit. The approach could also be useful in treating other addictions, such as to nicotine, heroin, and methamphetamine. 

"Our very dramatic data shows that we can protect mice against the effects of cocaine, and we think this approach could be very promising in fighting addiction in humans," says the study's lead investigator, Ronald G. Crystal, chairman and professor of genetic medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College. 

"The vaccine suppresses the stimulant effects of the drug," said Scripps Research Professor Kim Janda, a co-author of the paper and a pioneer in the field of developing vaccines against addictive drugs such as cocaine. "Unlike other types of treatment, a vaccine such as this one does not interfere with the neurological targets of the drug, but instead blocks cocaine from ever reaching the brain in the first place." 

In the new study, the vaccine effect lasted for at least 13 weeks, the longest time point evaluated in such an approach. Since the vaccine likely will not require multiple expensive infusions, the researchers hope that it can move quickly into human trials.

Clinically, this sort of therapy could be given to people in treatment programs to aid in their recovery. And, like most other types of treatment, it will only be useful for those who want the help. 

"This vaccine would be most applicable for addicts who are who are interested in getting off the drug," said Janda, the Eli R. Callaway Jr. Chair in Chemistry and a member of the Skaggs Institute for Chemical Biology at Scripps Research. "In essence we view such vaccines as 'immuno-helpers' for treating substance abuse, and, in the case at hand, it might prove to be extremely useful for crack addicts whose relapse rate is exceedingly high." 

The Drug 

According to the latest statistics available from National Institutes of Health (NIH) National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) in 2008 5.3 million Americans age 12 and older had abused cocaine in any form and 1.1 million had abused crack at least once in the year prior to being surveyed. 

Cocaine, derived from the leaf of the Erythroxylaceae coca plant, is a highly potent drug that, as a salt, is either snorted or dissolved in water and injected directly into the bloodstream. The salt is also often neutralized to make an insoluble "free-base" form that is smoked. 

Once ingested in the bloodstream, the drug crosses the blood - brain barrier and accumulates rapidly in the brain. "The brain levels rise very rapidly once cocaine is taken into the system," said Janda. 

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The Effects Of Spirituality In Alcoholics Anonymous On Alcohol Dependence

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New research shows that attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings may increase spirituality and help decrease frequency and intensity of alcohol use

  • Alcoholics Anonymous is a widely known 12-step program that can help individuals control their dependence on alcohol, and spirituality is a large part
  • A new study shows that spirituality does increase over time, which can lead to better alcohol outcomes and an improved rate of recovery
  • These results indicate that spirituality is an important factor in the multi-faceted recovery from an alcohol-use disorder

Addictions, whether it is to drugs or alcohol, are a very difficult hurdle for individuals to overcome. But, there are ways to help people with their recovery through 12-step programs like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). Many of these organizations, including AA, highlight spirituality as a very important factor, but the data surrounding its effectiveness have often been contested. 

However, new research shows that as attendance of AA meetings increase, so do the participants spiritual beliefs, especially in those individuals who had low spirituality at the beginning of the study. 

The results will be published in the March 2011 issue of Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research and are currently available at Early View. 

John F. Kelly, lead author of the study, Associate Professor in Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and the Associate Director of the Center for Addiction Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital, said that while spirituality is an important aspect of AA recovery, it is not the only way they can help individuals. 

"I've heard it said that AA is too spiritual, and I've also heard it said that AA is not spiritual enough for some people. Although this is not the only way that AA helps individuals recover, I think these findings support the notion that AA works in part by enhancing spiritual practices," Kelly said. 

The researchers assessed more than 1,500 adults throughout their recovery process, with data being gathered at three, six, nine, 12, and 15 months. The study utilized data on their attendance to AA meetings, their individual spirituality/religiosity practices and overall alcohol-use outcomes to determine if spirituality is indeed a mechanism of behavior change. 

The results indicated that there was a robust association between an increase in attendance to AA meetings with increased spirituality and a decrease in the frequency and intensity of alcohol use over time. One of the most interesting aspects of the research was that the same amount of recovery was seen in both agnostics and atheists, which indicates that while spirituality is an important mechanism of behavioral change for AA, it is not the only method used. 

"Many people will be surprised that alcoholic patients with little or no interest in spirituality attended AA and seemed to change even more than did those who had a pre-existing, strong sense of spirituality," said Keith Humphreys, a Career Research Scientist with the Veterans Health Administration and Professor of Psychiatry at Stanford University. "AA is thus much more broad in its appeal than is commonly recognized." 

The researchers also noted that while spirituality is an important aspect of recovery, it is still not known how these beliefs work in complement or competition with other recovery methods, as there are multiple. 

"We have also found that AA participation leads to recovery by helping members change their social network and by enhancing individuals' recovery coping skills, motivation for continued abstinence, and by reducing depression and increasing psychological well-being," said Kelly. 

"Down the road it will be important to conduct more qualitative research as well as further quantitative replication of our findings in order to understand more about how exactly spiritual practices and beliefs influence coping and behavioral change in recovery from addiction

Source: 
John F. Kelly, Ph.D.
Center for Addiction Medicine, Department of Psychiatry, Massachusetts General Hospital 
Keith Humphreys, Ph.D. 
Stanford University 
Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research

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