Monthly Archives: July 2017

difference between opiate and opioid

What’s the Difference Between Opiates and Opioids?

Walking blindly on a path to destruction- a fork in the road appears. One road has a sign labeled “Natural” and the one adjacent reading “Synthetic.” Knowing where both paths take you- does it really matter which one you stumble down? Opiates and opioids are the Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum of this situation playing innocent in their childish ways as you walk further into your wonderland of oblivion and despair.

Medications like opiates and opioids play an enormous role in our never ending quest for existence. The tiny little poppy seed derives out things in auto pilot when we getter tired of handling the controls. We think they make things easier, especially addicts and alcoholics, but chemicals can be ever so deceiving in this snake oil salesmen of the world we live in. For thousands of years, the human population got by without the use of pharmaceuticals. I’m certain there were tons of peoples that suffered from mental disorders or chronic pain and had to deal with but unfortunately, that was just life.

It is without question that some people require certain medications to get by and function in everyday life and there is nothing wrong with that. On the other hand, an unfathomable amount of our human population is wrongly prescribed unnecessary medications. A vast mainstream of the people I’m talking about are handed bottle after bottle of opiates and opioids and told that putting this mask on will help their problem. The rest of the population is copping dope off the streets. The resulting epidemic is catastrophic.

Pinocchio Pills    

Opiates and opioids are derived from the poppy seed, (as I’m sure most who are reading this are already aware of).

  • Morphine
  • Heroin
  • Codeine
  • Opium

These are opiates- common street drugs that are birth products from the manufacturing of poppies in a mostly natural state. These versions of the drug are classified as illegal narcotics in most regions. This is the fine line between opiates and opioids.

Then you have the other lethal versions, or the little blood sucking pharmaceutical cousins mostly known as opioids. These forms of pain killers are a legal way for people to take mind numbing drugs without repercussions, but they are processed and distributed by the government in a way that gets heavily abused time and time again. A list of these synthetic versions of chemically processed poppies usually contains:

  • Methadone
  • Dilaudid
  • Percocet, Percodan, or Oxycodone
  • Demerol
  • Vicodin/Hydrocodone
  • Fentanyl

A list of different DEA and FDA approved pills that mean nothing in the casual agreement penned between life and death.

opiate pills

The Troll Toll

The DEA has made several minor attempts throughout the years to try and contain the resulting epidemic from both opiates and opioids. It was recorded that the year of 2014 holds the record for the most overdose deaths in one year. Ironically it was a record year for less opiate/opioid prescriptions having been written. This is due in accordance with the CDC having dropped new laws with the guidelines for medical personnel prescribing opiates and opioids after the death toll started increasing dramatically in the later 2010’s.

Even with lower amounts of prescriptions being dosed out, this isn’t enough to stop the alcoholic thinking mind of America. A number of people have just turned to heroin in recent years due to the crackdown on painkillers and the supply/demand remaining so heavy. In some areas, you can find the mixed combination of opiates and opioids with many heroin dealers cutting their heroin with opioids such as Fentanyl or stronger versions. This, in turn, is the cause of more overdoses and deaths. It has gotten to a point where it is now required for law enforcement, EMTs, and Firefighters to now start carrying Narcan with them regularly. Narcan is an opiate/opioid overdose reversal drug. It is a synthetic opioid in itself but has a different reaction on the brain than the ones that are zombifying the masses. It helps to bring somebody back who is on their way out the door from a lethal dose of drug du jour opiates and opioids.

The Hidden Alternatives

For the record, there are many options for physical pain aside from pain killers and the pills pushed by pharmaceutical America. There are plenty of non-narcotic options such as ibuprofen, Motrin, Advil, Tylenol, etc. These have always worked on my behalf for minor injuries. In large doses mixed over the hands of time, these can take their own toll on our organs and other such matters. Some people prefer to stay away from the chemicals altogether. Depending on the form of pain, it is best to consult a doctor and look thoroughly into what options can be provided.  

Most would be unpleasantly surprised as to how quick the mind/body decides it enjoys the feeling of opiates and opioids. It’s always just a matter of time before we awaken the demons of our addiction and the partnering decision that this one prescription wasn’t nearly enough. Even if opiates and opioids were never a problem of yours, beware the idea of cross addiction. Not only do most of us prefer the easier path, but most people generally like to feel good. Everybody wants to laugh and enjoy their little slice of heaven. In a matter of no time at all, we can convince ourselves to become accustomed to that state of “feeling better than normal”, but rest assured it is a slippery slope if one is not prepared for the fall.

Pain is real in All Forms

It doesn’t matter the form, synthetic or real, the effects on the brain/body are always real. Whether you suffer from physical or mental pain, at the end of the day- it’s still taking a toll. Addiction will make things worse while convincing us that it will eventually get better. If you or a loved one has been struggling and need a safe drug detox facility, call 888-481-1993 or visit www.coastaldetox.com. We have trained specialists on standby ready to help start this transitional period and give the clarity and peace of mind deserved. Moving forward, there is a life that can be proudly stood behind.

 

signs of drug abuse

Signs of Depression and Drug Abuse

Ever have those days waking up and this psychological funk just hits you like a ton of bricks? Yesterday seems fake and tomorrow is too real. The future and all its prospects around you begin to fester into this rather gargantuan monster of negativity that encompasses all of you. It’s uncomfortable but it’s unexplainable. You just don’t feel like you. There’s a tight mental grip that depression and drug abuse subconsciously take hold of.   

Depression and drug abuse go together like peanut butter and jelly. It doesn’t matter if its problems at home, relationships at work, or even monetary issues occurring- we all experience that heaviness at various points in life. For most people, these low feelings come and go as any other normal emotion can, and off on their merry way they skip along. Then there are those who suffer from actual real live depression who become shackled to the cynicism coursing through their veins. Every inch of the person wishes they weren’t like this. It’s like the big school bully just sitting on you and preventing you from the freedom you long for. Talk about a self-induced mental wedgie.

Mental Barriers  

Clinical depression as it’s deemed- really is mental disability with extreme discomfort for the individual and the loved ones in his/her immediate circle.

Depression and drug abuse are extremely common among people who have addictive personalities.  Ironically enough, alcohol itself is a depressant and will often time intensify the negative feelings swarming the hive in between our ears. If that doesn’t do it, our alcoholic thinking kind of tells us to drown out the low feelings with whatever chemicals can be thrown our way. It’s all about feeling too much and trying to feel less- or so we tell ourselves.

Depression and drug abuse will drag us through an all time new low, but blue is a color that was meant for the sky. Why is it that we constantly justify everything negative that this dreaded disease has brought into our lives? As addicts and alcoholics, we look to the substance to fill this hole inside of us because something is missing. Strangely enough, all the drug abuse has done is made us feel emptier than before. That is the definition of irony and insanity rolled up into one sick joke.  

The sickness of alcoholic thinking is it wants us to remember all the wonderful highs and drunken nights that we claim to have had fun in. The sick part is that mentally, depression and drug abuse want us to forget about all the nights we cried ourselves to sleep. Clinical depression will literally squeeze you like a boa constrictor that you can’t shake off. It will help you to forget all the days that an empty bottle and a dull rusty syringe were your best friends.

Eventually, depression and drug abuse will show us a path where death is the end product to ending this “uncomfortable madness.” We must clip this wick and prevent the candle from burning out too early.

depressed alcoholic man

Find Your Tail Eeyore

Depression and drug abuse can affect all addicts and alcoholics differently. It’s estimated that roughly 10% of addicts and alcoholics deal with the mental disorder of clinical depression coupled with their alcoholism– yet this is a sandwich that must be eaten in separate pieces. Those dealing with this power couple of mental disorders are usually

  • Middle-aged adults between the ages of 45 and 64
  • Females
  • African Americans and Hispanics
  • People who are unable to work or who are chronically unemployed
  • People who lack private medical insurance or public health benefits

Recognizing and admitting one’s addictive tendencies is a bit of a different game than just battling clinical depression. The two together will powerhouse you- but it’s about perseverance and seeing the greater good thru the fog.

To admit one is an addict or alcoholic is the easy part. To accept it and realize there is no other direction this thing can take you- that is where the revelations begin. Sometimes this overwhelming feeling of rock bottom will need to hit.  This, for myself and many, is what it takes to commit to sobriety and attacking clinical depression. It is also what it takes to throw many over the edge and into a casket.

Remember: Love Yourself

It’s unfortunate how such thinking just takes over like it does, and for some, it goes on for years and years and years. As mentioned previously, some addicts and alcoholics never find a solution to the problem and end up enduring the torment that depression and drug abuse bring up until that last breath. To admit out loud that you have run all other options into the ground and have accepted your desperation may be what it takes to make some final changes.

There are different solutions to each problem and all battling depression and drug abuse are not doomed to wander the earth in an uncomfortable stupor.

Regular psychiatric visits or attending Alcoholics or Narcotics Anonymous meetings can be a godsend for those who truly want to keep moving forward. Our chemical usage will only make us more depressed, and depression will make us want to use. Irony at its finest. When that heavy negative hold comes over you- it’s imperative to remember that nothing is permanent in life except for death. Call yourself out and do everything in your power to feel like the miracle of life that you actually are. Do not roll your eyes- you are the greatest miracle in the world if you want to be.

End of the Line

Life likes to sneak up on people but depression and drug abuse will grab you up by the ankles and flip your whole world upside down. It gets old quick- but there are alternatives to being chemically dependent. If you or a loved one is struggling with chemical dependency and are ready for help, please call 1-888-481-1993 or visit www.coastaldetox.com.  We are ready to give you any suggestions possible and set you or your loved one on a path that we can all be proud of.

how to recover from heroin addiction

How Quickly Can You Recover from Heroin Abuse?

There is no pause button for the book of life and you best be ready for every chapter to unfold. As so much positive and negative surrounds our presence, it becomes all about how we interact with these external forces. Actually reading into the game of mental gymnastics as we turn page after page trying to understand why we is, why we are, and why we be. When you’re up- it’s in the clouds, and when it rains it pours.

Does anybody remember the story of the little engine that could? Maybe this was something of just my childhood, but it’s a story of this live talking and emotion having train that over the course of ten pages of large print and illustrations has this internal struggle to overcome an obstacle of going up this rather large hill he or she wasn’t sure they could get to the top of. Sounds like the work of David Blaine or something. Alas, all the sorcery aside, the message in the story was the optimistic thoughts the train prodded itself with. “I think I can, I think I can, I think I can”, were the words muttered. Deep.  

Moving to the main topic of focus, a lot can be said the same about heroin abuse and the addict at hand stuck in the throes of alcoholic thinking. How quickly this person recovers is how quickly they want to encourage themselves to move up the hill and get to the top. Reaching into a pile of cliches and pulling one out, it’s important to remember that with heroin abuse involved life is only going to reap what you sow.

Yesterday

This book of life is already a tricky enough read as is, but then when you throw in the disease of alcoholism- it becomes a whole new chapter of focus. For the chemically dependent, heroin abuse literally becomes a way of life for those that like to partake in such life ruining debauchery. Wake up- heroin. Lunch time- heroin. Time to go to work- heroin. Bed time- a nice spot of tea with a few crumpets before we put our pajamas on. Sorry, that’s also slang for heroin. Heroin abuse becomes the wet soggy pages of your book that you’re still trying to turn without ripping and ruining the pages even further. Too much saturation and eventually the book will be illegible.

With a bit of luck and somebody wishing upon a star, none of us have to stay shackled to this way of life. Recovering from heroin abuse takes time and effort- it won’t just happen overnight. There are processes and ways of life that have to be recycled and other new ones adapted. For most addicts, whether heroin abuse or applying chapstick is your thing, getting rid of the substance is, of course, the first part. Then what?

Those that have let heroin abuse them and made it thru that chapter will usually tell you similar methods as to how they moved forward in the literacy of life. Most scenarios include

  • Working a 12 step program
  • Getting involved in Anonymous programs of the sort
  • Making friends having gone thru the same shtick
  • Changing patterns and routines
  • Indulging in healthy mannerisms
  • Thinking in a positive/proactive manner

These are things that generally need to be done to dry the pages out and move forward. Remember- I think I can, I think I can, I think I can.  

positive attitude

All My Troubles Seemed So Far Away

The thing that some struggle to recognize is that time is an illusion. If you allow yourself to be absorbed into the imaginative structure of your book and enjoy each page to its fullest, it won’t matter how long it takes to get out of such a chemically abusive relationship. Think about it, how long does it take one to enjoy life? Is there a finish line that we reach where we’ve hit the peak and it’s all unhappy experiences from then on out? No. As we begin enjoying ourselves and feeling that internal happiness returning, things begin to uncomplicate themselves as the end of your book grows ever nearer.

Just to reiterate, positive and negative will happen regardless. Eliminating heroin abuse from this story will make things much more pleasant though.

As we discard this way of life and move onto the prospects of a new one, we start realizing how difficult yet easy recovery actually is. It really doesn’t take that much to abstain from something that will knowingly destruct your life. When your mind is riddled with the chemicals of heroin abuse, sure it’s hard to see things rationally. However, once we can commence detoxification from the opiates– it’s like this filtered lens is then removed from our vision and perception of things. The focus of this only becomes clearer as we start various forms of introspection and gain self-awareness of ourselves.

The quickness of recovering from heroin abuse is all about action. Unfortunately, we cannot think away the disease of alcoholic thinking and we cannot wish ourselves to be opiate free suddenly waking up one day without withdrawing from the processed poppies that we have allowed to control our livelihood. We have to stand up to the obsession and toss all fear to the side. We’re only given this one book and we must create the quickness for recovery of heroin abuse. You are the author.

But It Doesn’t Have to be Here to Stay

Defeating addiction of all sorts means you have to believe in tomorrow. You have to believe that there is another chapter or sequel to your story. The reality of the situation is that this article wouldn’t have been read if there wasn’t some sort of concern. If you or a loved one is struggling with chemical dependency and are ready for help, please call 1-888-481-1993 or visit www.coastaldetox.com.  We are ready to give you any suggestions possible and set you or your loved one on a path that we can all be proud of.

addiction services

What the New Healthcare Bill Could Mean for Addiction Services

Life is like this long game that is constantly changing, and you’re trying to figure out the new rules- but at the same time, you have absolutely no power in the deck that you’re dealt to play with. Sometimes we win, sometimes we lose, but the idea is that we keep trying to maintain. We fight thru adversity and the daily struggles that life emits our way in this carbon based bubble of uncertainty.

Addicts and alcoholics are used to uncertainty. In most Anonymous fellowship programs, there is a prayer that is said just to keep us realizing that ambiguity is a constant being breathed in our air. We, as in those who think alcoholically, have to remind ourselves that there are some things we can change and some that we can’t- and then to know the difference between the two. Yet where do we draw the line of not being able to change something?

Recently a new bill was brought to the table that will essentially be taking a few steps back for the leagues of chemically dependent people roaming about this planet. The Better Care Reconciliation Act or BCRA is an idea being put to paper that will be detrimental to addicts and alcoholics of the like nationwide.

The Sentencing

The proposals being drawn up for this bill will rewind some things previously written in stone in regards to the Affordable Care Act. Once put into place, the BCRA bill will severely cut Medicaid costs across the country- thus making so many medical costs unaffordable. Basically, in a nutshell with this act passed, millions who depend on addiction healthcare services will be just plain Jane out of luck. Tons of people who have used their Medicaid to receive medications needed to keep them sane- or detoxification services to regulate, will now just have to “figure it out” pretty much.

Fortunately, this battle is not being fought alone. The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) is trying to stand up and oppose the senate for the bill presented in the last few days. According to the United State’s top addiction experts like ASAM’s president Dr. Kelly Clark, right now would be the worst time to unveil a bill of such manner.  According to her, “ASAM is deeply concerned about what will happen to the 2.8 million Americans with a substance use disorder who gained coverage for the first time under the Medicaid expansion. We’ve seen the death toll from the opioid epidemic rise year after year; cutting access to treatment now will be a death sentence for too many more Americans.” This is not an unprecedented claim either. One would think she knows what she’s talking about.

now what

Prisoners of Addiction

Right now in July 2017, the United States is in the midst of a gigantic opioid epidemic that is clearing the country out. Young and old, people far and wide are innocently losing their lives to chemical dependency and the grips that addiction takes on its victim. With states like Ohio having to rent out cold storage units to attach to their morgues because of the overflow of lifeless bodies, it’s absurd to think that our government would even have the audacity to play such a card. No joke. There are literally so many fatal overdoses occurring because of this opiate induced plague that there isn’t any more room for the bodies to be processed. These are human beings just like you or me!

We would easily be taking a few steps backwards. Dr. Paul Earley, ASAM’s president elect, assures us, “The Senate Bill would move us back to a time when even those with insurance can’t access medically necessary addiction treatment services.” There is a mention of a couple billion dollars being funded in the bill to address the ongoing opiate epidemic in 2018, should the bill be passed, but this isn’t nearly enough of a severance package in the eyes of most. Dr. Earley goes on to state, “And it’s inclusion of $2 billion in 2018 to address the opioid epidemic is no substitute for sustainable and predictable Medicaid coverage – coverage that allows for the treatment of the whole person, not just one diagnosis.”

Not Promising

The outlook of treatment and detoxification for addiction services in the future is beginning to look a little grim. It almost seems as if it’s a population control technique or something sinister like out of a movie. It really makes you wonder if this is real life. All jokes aside though, things are not looking too promising in regards to getting help down the road. The Trump administration doesn’t seem to be making addiction services a priority anytime soon. The most ironic part about the situation is that with this new bill and the alleged cutbacks, this is the most prevalent time in the last couple decades that Medicaid is the most for aiding addicts and alcoholics.

Granted not everybody is in the same pair of shoes, so this will affect everybody in a different manner. If passed, those relying on Medicaid thru the Affordable Care Act will then struggle to

  • Get certain prescription Medications
  • Obtain necessary psychiatric visits
  • Have a safe institution for chemical detox
  • Find affordable addiction maintenance

The list goes on. Finding any basic addiction services for somebody trying to escape the misery that encompasses the disease of alcoholism will be like trying to locate a needle in a haystack. At what point do people stand up and fight for the rights of basic healthcare coverage that are owed to them. With how many lives are disappearing, it’s time for somebody to care and for something to change.

Get the Help That IS Available

There is one fact that always remains regardless of the change that comes to our door: we can’t outrun addiction. If the disease of alcoholism comes knocking in any form, the results that ensue can flip the right person’s life upside down in the blink of an eye. If you or a loved one is struggling with chemical dependency and are ready for help, please call 1-888-481-1993 or visit www.coastaldetox.com.  We are ready to give you any suggestions possible and set you or your loved one on a path that we can all be proud of.