Drug Addiction

Addiction is a terrible disease that can cause rippling effects in someone’s life and livelihood. Sometimes it can be tough to pinpoint exactly why and how an addiction emerged. Drug addiction can stem from feelings and certain memories (usually traumatic or underlying causes). However, one of the factors that play a big role in addiction is genetics. If your family has a history of substance abuse, it highly increases your risk of addiction and other behavioral disorders. 

The environment a person grows up in can have a massive impact on their mental state in the future. According to research done by the National Council of Alcohol and Drug Dependence (NCADD), if a person’s family has a history of substance abuse, they are twice as likely to develop one as well. It’s essential to keep in mind that while your family history increases the likelihood that you’ll develop an addiction, nothing is written in stone. Regardless of your family history, there are ways that you can prevent yourself from developing an addiction. 

At Coastal Detox, we understand how serious of an issue addiction can be. Substance abuse in families can be devastating for everyone involved. That’s why we’re here to provide you with the knowledge and resources that you need to help you avoid addiction. There are many things that you can do to live a healthy and normal life, free of drugs. Understanding your past pains while learning to cope with them is essential to staying clean or getting clean. 

How Past Experiences Can Affect the Risk of Addiction

There are a variety of factors that can affect your risk of addiction, particularly in your early childhood. You could have grown up in a negative household, or perhaps you had parents that abused drugs regularly. Nearly all addicts have loved ones that also suffer from substance abuse. Thus, young children with drug-abusing parents have a greater chance of becoming addicts themselves. 

Past experiences with drug-abusing family members can negatively change the trajectory of a person’s life or cause a person to develop mental health issues. Being the child of a parent who abused drugs or mistreated you can even negatively affect a person’s ability to function and grow. Over time, negative, drug-related past experiences can lead a person down the road towards addiction. In fact, many children with drug-abusing parents may turn to drugs to cope with the stress that having drug-abusing parents has brought on them.  Other children with drug-abusing parents will end up following in their parents’ footsteps. 

A family with a history of substance abuse can be extremely problematic in the long-run. But there are things you can do to break the chain of substance abuse in your family. Your past shouldn’t affect your future. Luckily, there are many things that you can do to prevent yourself from abusing drugs. With the help of professionals and your own determination, you can live a clean and happy life, free of drugs and mental ruin. 

Defining Substance Abuse and Behavioral Disorders

It’s important to know the signs of substance abuse or behavioral disorders. By recognizing these warnings and acting upon the tips laid out on this page, you can prevent the risk of substance abuse from reaching you. Substance use disorder is a condition that’s characterized by repetitive, disruptive, and problematic patterns of substance abuse (which results in distress and impairment). While each substance has its own unique effects, there are some common signs of a substance use disorder:

Behavioral disorders are also very detrimental to your mind and body. There are many different disorders with many differing symptoms. Thus, it’s important to consult a professional for a true diagnosis. 

Mental disorders can begin as far back as childhood. They are characterized by emotional disturbances that last for a long period of time (six months or more). These can have an effect on a person’s educational, personal, and social development. Let’s take a look at some of the general signs of a possible behavioral disorder (symptoms vary greatly from disorder to disorder):

Preventing Substance Abuse For Future Generations

It can be a complex issue dealing with the interaction between genetics and a family’s upbringing. There are some cases where a parent may pass down some genetic markets (mental health or substance abuse disorders) to their children. In fact, there is evidence to suggest that there is some genetic predisposition to addiction that can be passed down. While this may be completely out of your control, your future (for yourself and the next generation) is in your hands. 

There are different things you can do to stop problems from developing, in terms of substance abuse or mental disorders in your life. While some things are completely out of our control, we still have a choice to live a better, happier life. Practice these tips and don’t be afraid to reach out for help when things get rough. Rehab centers like Coastal Detox are here to help you reach a better place if you’re struggling. You’re not alone in this battle, get help today if needed!

Come to Terms with Your Past Wounds

There are many stressful and traumatic experiences that may affect our development. These underlying issues may be the cause of distress and possible substance abuse down the line. Whether you decide to get treatment or not, it’s imperative to heal from these wounds. Oftentimes, it’s these thoughts that fuel our addiction further. Luckily, there are resources and counselors that are ready to help you on your journey. 

It’s important to know that even with a family history of substance abuse, it’s never too late to reach out for help. By addressing these past struggles and learning to cope with them, you can come to terms with these feelings. Now’s the time to improve and remain on a track towards sobriety for you and your family after you. 

history of substance abuse

Keeping Track of Drug and Alcohol Use

When it comes to alcohol, it’s completely normal to have a drink or two. You don’t need to be completely sober at a party or event just because you have family members that suffer from addiction. However, you should keep track of how much you are drinking or using drugs. 

Those with a family history of alcohol abuse are 4 times more likely to have alcohol problems of their own. When talking about drug addiction, a person is 8 times more likely to develop an addiction if he or she has a family history of drug addiction. 

It’s important to be aware of how much you drink and how much you use. Excessive drinking can become a habit, all of which can stem from life’s stresses or past memories. Keep a close eye on the amount you are drinking and don’t lose control. Before you know it, an addiction could branch out if you see it coming. Always remember to stay in control and aware of your alcohol/drug intake.

Be Aware of Triggers 

Certain triggers can cause you to spiral into a state of alcohol or drug abuse. They may make you want to drink or use drugs to cope with the stress (of the trigger). These triggers can come in different forms and vary from person to person. It’s important to not let these triggers get the better of you. Common triggers include:

While each of these can pose stress and troublesome thoughts, it’s important to not turn to drugs or alcohol to cope. There are other ways to healthily destress and cope with these stressors. 

Create a solid stress management system. This can be done with professional help. Don’t be afraid to ask for help; whether it is close family members, friends, or professional counselors, there’s always someone ready to help. 

Managing Your Stress Effectively

There are many things that you can do to effectively manage your stress. While there are many stressors that can emerge throughout our lives and through our thoughts, it’s how we react to them that matters. 

It can be easy to give up and succumb to the urge to drink or use drugs to take the pain away. While genetics play a factor, it isn’t the end all be all. Everyone deals with problems but it’s how we manage and cope with them that counts. Consider some of the follows techniques and tips for managing stress in a healthy way:

These are all ways to stay on track and away from substances during times of stress. While it may be tempting, and you may get certain urges to do so, you don’t have to slip into addiction as your past generations did. Be patient and stick closely to a regiment that will help you cope with stress and life’s problems.

Hope is Available, Despite Your Family’s History of Substance Abuse

If you find yourself slipping or struggling with an addiction, it may be time to get help. Regardless of your family’s history of substance abuse, you can change for the better. 

At Coastal Detox, we specialize in safe and effective detox. With a wonderful staff and a trusted facility, you will be on your way to a better life in no time. Contact us today to learn more about our drug addiction treatment and other addiction resources. 

It is common knowledge that smoking can be terrible for your body. Not only are cigarettes highly addictive but they are destructive as well. Smoking in general has the potential to affect almost every organ in a person’s body, including the heart. Every year hundreds of thousands of smokers die due to the effects of this habit. Over the years, new alternative methods of smoking have emerged, one of these is vaping. But is vaping better than smoking?

While tobacco is very negative there are other alternatives people might seek or perhaps people may break the habit completely. Although many people may see it as a better alternative to straight-up smoking, is vaping actually better for you than cigarettes? And can e-cigarettes like vapes halt your smoking habits once and for all? Let’s take a look at the truth about vaping and its downside.

What is Vaping?

Vaping is the act of inhaling vapor that comes from electronic cigarettes (also known as e-cigarettes) or another vaping device. E-cigarettes are typically battery-powered devices and usually run off cartridges. These cartridges are usually filled with a liquid (which has nicotine, chemicals, and certain flavors). Vaping has amassed a large amount of popularity over recent years. While it may be safer than smoking cigarettes they still have some negative effects on the body. 

Vaping: The Possible Health Complications

The way e-cigarettes work is by heating nicotine, flavors, and other chemicals that you then inhale. Cigarettes, on the other hand, have upwards of 7,000 chemicals, most of these are toxic and destructive to the body over time. While we are uncertain about the exact chemical components of e-cigarettes, there is no doubt that they are safer and less toxic than regular cigarettes. 

However, vaping is not without its own issues and dangers. Over the years, there has been a big surge in lung injuries and deaths related to vaping. At the beginning of 2020, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported 60 deaths in people with e-cigarette/vaping use associated lung injuries (EVALI). However, it is worth noting that the CDC mentioned that many of these were associated with ‘modified vaping devices or black-market modified e-liquids’. Not only this but the injuries were associated with vaping products that had tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in them. 

The CDC also found that vitamin E acetate was a problem among people with EVALI. Vitamin E acetate is usually used in THC vaping products and works as a sort of thickening agent. This particular element was found in the fluid sample of all people with vape related lung injuries (as examined by the CDC). You should never modify or vape liquids you aren’t sure of, especially if it comes from an unknown or black market. 

It is recommended by the CDC that people:

Vaping and Nicotine’s Effects on Your Heart and Lungs

Unfortunately, nicotine is found in both regular cigarettes and e-cigarettes alike. Nicotine is highly addictive and can completely impact a person’s behavior towards it. Over time, nicotine can cause a person to have cravings to smoke while suffering from withdrawal symptoms when they ignore the urge to smoke. Not only is it addictive but it also has negative effects on the body. Nicotine can raise a person’s heart rate and increases the chances of a heart attack.

With this in mind, is vaping better than smoking? While it is safer, there are many things we don’t know about vaping. The chemicals that are used in the vapor are still unclear. It’s also not clear to what extent its effects on the body are in the long-run.  There is data to suggest a correlation between chronic lung disease and asthma with e-cigarettes and smoking. It is unknown what is in the chemical makeup of e-cigarettes but research suggests it’s not entirely safe.

Vaping Can Be Just as Addicting as Using Regular Cigarettes

Nicotine is present in both traditional cigarettes and e-cigarettes alike. Nicotine’s level of addictiveness can be compared to the likes of other drugs like cocaine or heroin. In some cases, a person may be consuming more nicotine from vaping than regular cigarettes. This is due to the fact that a person can buy extra-strength cartridges. 

These cartridges typically have a larger concentration of nicotine and they can also increase the e-cigarettes voltage (which allows for a bigger and more intense ‘hit’). No matter what form nicotine comes in, it is highly addictive and continues to be a problem for thousands of people. While vaping and e-cigarettes may not hold the same number of effects as smoking regular cigarettes, they still have nicotine in them. 

E-cigarettes Are Not the Best Way to Stop Smoking

While many see e-cigarettes and vaping as a way to quit their smoking habits, this has not been officially approved. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved e-cigarettes as a smoking cessation device. Some people may have the intention of quitting their smoking habits but this doesn’t always happen with e-cigarettes in the mix. In fact, studies have found that some people initially use e-cigarettes to stop their smoking habits but eventually end up using both e-cigarettes and regular ones.

How a Generation May be Getting Hooked to Nicotine

Among the younger generation, e-cigarettes have become much more popular than regular tobacco products. A U.S. surgeon general reported that e-cigarettes usage among high school students increased by a staggering 900%. 40% of these students had never smoked traditional cigarettes before either. 

There are a number of reasons why the younger generation may be more inclined to vape or try e-cigarettes. One of the main reasons is the belief that vaping is not nearly as harmful as regular tobacco products. Another reason is that vaping is much cheaper than buying cigarettes (cheaper per-use cost). Lastly, one of the appealing factors of e-cigarettes is the different flavors available. Apple, cotton candy, and watermelon are just some of the available flavors out there (which is a draw for younger generations).

Another draw is the lack of smoke along with the potent smell of tobacco. Both the older and younger generation agree that the lack of smoke in e-cigarettes makes vaping much more appealing. With all the appeals of vaping, there are plenty of negative effects to keep in mind for the future. 

The Truth About Vaping

As we’ve seen, the truth about vaping is that it is a better alternative to smoking and is not nearly as dangerous in the long-run. However, there are still certain side effects to vaping on a regular basis. Additionally, e-cigarettes contain nicotine, which is the same addictive chemical found in tobacco products. The lungs and heart can also be affected after long-term use (along with other health complications that can arise depending on the case). 

How to Quit Smoking

If you or a loved one is addicted to smoking and can’t break the habit it may be time to get some help. There are many programs that can help a person stop their smoking habits. Consult with your doctor about the next step to take in the process. Smoking, particularly tobacco products, may relieve stress in the short term but with it comes several negative effects on the body. 

At the end of the day it’s more than just the question: is vaping better than smoking? It’s something much more. Smoking in any form can be bad for you and it’s important to act instead of doing nothing. Some healthy things you can try at home include the following:

While many of these tips may seem mundane, it can take a simple substitute to break the habit. This will not happen overnight of course. It’s up to you to stick to a routine and not give up. At the end of the day, it’s about changing your behavior. If things get tough, don’t be afraid to ask for help

Coastal Detox is Here to Help

The truth about vaping and about all types of drugs is that sometimes professional help is needed to stop a dangerous habit. Taking a step back, if you or a loved one is struggling with more severe addictions like drugs or alcohol, Coastal Detox is here to help. Let us help you towards a brighter future. Contact us today for more information on addiction treatment or if you have any questions for our wonderful staff. We look forward to helping you on the road to recovery from drug or alcohol use disorders.




Mixing any kind of drug with alcohol has its potential health and addiction risks and can even lead to death. In other words, combining alcohol with any drug is a real danger. Even a non-narcotic mixture of antidepressants and alcohol runs the risk of fatal side effects if you take more than prescribed. The combination of baclofen and alcohol is one of many addictive and harmful mixtures. This blog is designed to provide information and warnings about this risky addiction. 

Baclofen: What Is It?

Baclofen is a prescription drug medical professionals prescribe to treat muscle spasms that occur as a result of spinal cord injuries and/or disease and multiple sclerosis. The most common brand names for baclofen are Lioresal and Gablofen.

This drug works as a central nervous system (CNS) depressant. It is commonly used as a skeletal muscle relaxant to treat medical conditions like spasticity. In more recent times, some European studies have discovered that baclofen can be a powerful withdrawal medication given to individuals going through alcohol addiction detox. 

When people think of prescription pill addiction, what typically comes to mind are prescription drugs like painkillers or opioids. But individuals commonly consider a muscle relaxer like baclofen to be safe.

Baclofen is not a narcotic and it does not act on the opioid receptors in the brain like other prescription pain medication. However, medical professionals may sometimes prescribe it to treat severe pain. But, when combined, baclofen and alcohol, the chances of dependency and/or addiction increase greatly. 

The Baclofen And Alcohol Combo: Why Do People Mix Them?

Baclofen is known to be effective on alcohol withdrawal symptoms because it reduces cravings the severity of alcohol withdrawal symptoms. So, some individuals will choose to take baclofen while still drinking alcohol. 

Baclofen and alcohol are both depressants, which means they lower the neurotransmission levels within the brain. This causes feelings of sedation and relaxation. Most people who develop addictions to baclofen and alcohol express that they like both the depressant effects that alcohol provides and the relief from muscle spasms through taking baclofen. 

The Baclofen And Alcohol Combo: The Side Effects And Risks

When you combine baclofen and alcohol these depressants can cause a troubling effect in the individual upon consumption. The alcohol will enhance the side effects of the baclofen. 

Some of the side effects of combining baclofen and alcohol include but are not limited to:

When someone begins experiencing these side effects from combining baclofen and alcohol, it is considered a “pharmacodynamic interaction” within the medical community. By definition, this means that alcohol heightens the effects of the baclofen within the central nervous system. These interactions can be dangerous and can also lead to addiction or even fatality. 

The Baclofen And Alcohol Combo: Medical Detoxification (Detox) 

Whether or not you will have withdrawal symptoms or if you need medical detox from baclofen and alcohol consumption depends on the length of use or abuse. Everyone reacts differently to various types of drugs and combinations.

Also, with the increase in popularity of prescription drug addiction and the long-lasting prominence of alcoholism, no one really knows how their bodies will react to other prescription drugs and/or substances like alcohol, even simple things such as a daily vitamin.

Medical detox programs exist to help individuals who have physical additions to various types of substances, including baclofen and alcohol. These programs help by reducing painful withdrawal symptoms during the initial detox. 

The Baclofen And Alcohol Combo: What Happens After Detox?

Once people complete a medication-assisted treatment (MAT) detox program, they will either continue with inpatient or an outpatient addiction treatment program. These programs are designed to help those who are facing an addiction to baclofen and alcohol.

Addiction treatment has expanded in the last century to be able to address all individuals in every aspect of their addiction process. Individuals can benefit from unique therapies and treatments that focus specifically on their personal challenges, experiences, and concerns. 

There are various types of inpatient and outpatient treatments available. This is necessary since addiction treatment typically works to meet the individual’s needs, depending on their experiences with substance misuse.

Residential Treatment Programs for Addiction

Residential treatment programs provide continuous access to medical, clinical, and psychiatric care in addition to various holistic treatment services and amenities. These addiction treatment programs typically offer many different forms of treatments and therapies.  

Inpatient residential treatment program therapies include but are not limited to:

Inpatient treatment programs also offer plenty of great amenities! These amenities help to keep individuals comfortable and engaged throughout the addiction treatment process. Residential treatment programs typically involve daily access to holistic treatments, which include:

Outpatient Treatment Programs for Addiction

Some individuals respond well to outpatient addiction treatment programs rather than residential treatment programs. Often, those individuals tend to have a less severe addiction or they may be in the earlier stages of their addiction. As a result, they may benefit more from continuing their regular routines like work and family obligations. This type of treatment works well for those who are ready to modify and change their behaviors and habits. 

Some outpatient programs for an addiction to baclofen and alcohol include but are not limited to:

Will Your Health Insurance Cover Treatment?

The response is usually, yes! However, most health insurance companies request health insurance policyholders to select from an authorized medical provider list. Also, there are often some associated costs with this type of addiction treatment program including addiction detox, like cost-share or co-pay insurance programs.

It is always important to get familiar with what kind of health care insurance policy you have or what exactly is covered or NOT covered. This is imperative, so contact your insurance agent immediately to assist you in determining what you can afford. 

Typically, detox centers and programs have professional staff members who are able to help you deal with health insurance companies. They can answer questions about your healthcare coverage promptly and skillfully assist you with getting the approvals you will require for effective treatment.

Coastal Detox: Helping You Detox From Baclofen And Alcohol

If you need medical detox from an addiction to the combination of baclofen and alcohol or any other substances, you can contact Coastal Detox today. Located in sunny and beautiful Stuart, Florida. 

Their drug and alcohol addiction treatment programs consist of skilled, medical professionals that are intent on helping you detox safely and comfortably from any and ALL substances including baclofen and alcohol. If further addiction rehabilitation is necessary, they will assist you in finding the best kind of drug and/or alcohol addiction treatment program. The team will provide you with a chance at lasting sobriety and an overall improvement in your mental health! 

Seeking assistance in getting clean from substances like baclofen and alcohol, will be hard and oftentimes even frightening. But you must not be afraid to reach out and seek help! It is difficult enough to deal with abuse and/or addiction. You should not have to handle the pain of detox or have to withdraw from addiction to baclofen and alcohol alone. For more information on how Coastal Detox can help you detox from baclofen and alcohol addiction and/or other abusive substances, please contact us toda

Taking care of your mental health is an important part of recovery from drug and alcohol addiction. It is one of the most important items in bringing about long-term sobriety and living a full and happy life during the process. But it should not be confined to one solitary day.

Why You Should Pay Attention to Your Mental Health Status

Reasons you should be attentive to your mental health during recovery are:

  1. Helps prevent addiction relapse—It seems obvious, but this is the primary reason to take care of your mental health. The connection between mental health-substance use is irrefutable.
  2. Nurtures the relationships you repaired during your substance use disorder treatment.
  3. Reduces anxiety.
  4. Increases self-esteem.
  5. Reduces the risk of depression.
  6. Improves your overall mood.

The Absence of Mental Illness Does Not Equate to Good Mental Health

The lack of mental illness does not necessarily mean that you have good mental health. In this case, mental health refers to the condition of your emotional, psychological, and social frame of mind. It includes the thoughts, feelings, moods, and behaviors that influence your choices and the way you handle stress and relationships with other people. 

3 Simple Tips for How You Can Work on Your Mental Health

Recovery from substance use disorders is a process of change by which people:

To meet these goals, you must take care of yourself. When you have an active substance use disorder, the last thing you care about is your physical and mental well-being. In recovery, it is the first thing.

Taking care of your mental health is a lot more complicated than taking care of your physical health, like washing your hands or taking a vitamin. Here are some suggestions for taking care of your mental health when you’re in recovery:

Keep a Healthy Lifestyle

Maintain a healthy and nutritious diet. Get regular cardiovascular exercise, and try to sleep seven to eight hours each night. 

Common sense advice can be difficult to practice while you are coping with the daily stressors of life. Results of research from addiction science have shown the connection to the advice and also revealed the remarkable extent that sleep, diet, and exercise have on mental health. 

Harvard research has shown that lifestyle changes that make for better sleep can improve mental health considerably.

Deficiencies of certain nutrients like vitamin B1 can have a negative effect on mood and energy levels, which are basic indicators of mental health or lack of it.

The many mental health benefits of regular cardiovascular exercise have now been shown to be true in several studies. The American Psychological Association has encouraged incorporating exercise in corrective interventions. 

Take Medications as Prescribed and Get Regular Checkups

Any co-occurring medical condition, whether it’s an injury or a chronic condition like diabetes or bipolar disorder, can trigger a relapse that can impede or interfere with your recovery.

The 2014 National Survey on Drug Use and Health found that 30% of Americans age 18 to 25 who had a substance use disorder in the previous year also had a co-occurring disorder such as anxiety or depression. One of the best ways to protect your recovery and mental health is to stick to your doctor-prescribed medication plan and get regular checkups.

Build Healthy Relationships

Arrange positive and meaningful connections with family, friends, and others in recovery. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s definition of recovery, there are three other components to recovery: home, purpose, and community. Much of what qualifies as good mental health includes relationships. So, be sure to make it a priority!

Benefits of Improving Your Mental Health

self careThe benefits of intentionally practicing to improve mental health are a response to the chronic stress that is part of life every day. Chronic stress has been proven to deteriorate the hippocampus. 

The hippocampus is a part of the brain that is involved in forming new memories and is also associated with learning and emotions. It plays a critical role in the organization and storage of new memories as well as connecting certain sensations and emotions to these memories.

Stress also leads to a decrease in the ability to concentrate, confusion, loss of sense of humor, anger irritability, and fear. Improving your mental health can help reduce the risk. Other benefits include:

A Few Words About Exercise

Improved mental health has been well documented, along with the improved levels of physical fitness. Decades of research results show the benefits of intentionally taking special care of your body.

Recently, the approach to physical and mental well-being has been prevention. Exercise is a preventative activity for both physical and mental health. When you make your body stronger, there is less pain in aging. The same is true for strengthening your mental health.

Research shows that people who have depressive disorders or anxiety disorders benefit immensely from increased exercise activities. 150 minutes of moderate activity or 75 minutes of vigorous activity per week is recommended by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) to reduce the risk of premature death. Not surprisingly, most of the population fails to meet these guidelines to improve overall well being.

Some benefits physical fitness on mental health include:

The Benefits of Continuing Counseling

For a long time, counseling has had a stigma attached. The medical model was developed to fix what was “broken.” If you are in counseling, you are not broken. People are adaptable and can rewire themselves. Professional counselors can help with this resilience by allowing the release of painful or unhelpful thoughts and behaviors.

Farming for Mental Health and Recovery

Although farming and agricultural activities may not be an alternative to rehab, sometimes rehab facilities integrate farming in their treatment programs. Some even have on-property farms. Other facilities encourage people to take care of animals such as horses or dogs as part of their treatment.

There is a belief that farming can bring about spirituality and provide help with addiction recovery by shifting your focus. Instead of focusing on your problems and addictions, you concentrate on your tasks such as working the soil or taking care of animals.

Seeing something through to the end can increase a sense of purpose, which might help with treatment and ongoing recovery. Physical exertion is beneficial, and the sense of accomplishment is a huge motivational influence.

Journaling for Your Health

Journaling is a powerful tool in many different areas of well being. It benefits not only mental health but also physical wellness. Some research even shows an improvement in breast cancer patient recovery through journaling. 

The use of reflective journaling for adolescents shows increases in self-regulation, self-motivation, and self-effectiveness. It has also been used to benefit individuals working to overcome addiction. Journaling offers a place to let go of inner fears and stress. Reducing stress and negative thoughts are benefits that can be acquired through regular practice. It also improves critical thinking skills.

A study from Canada showed the benefits of journaling as a tool in counseling women with a gambling addiction. Members of the group were instructed on effective journaling in addition to group counseling. The results were fewer relapses and improved growth in areas of overcoming thoughts about the addiction. 

10 Intentional Activities to Improve Mental Health

Engaging in these activities can help to improve mental health. How you approach it is an individual choice but helpful when intentionally focused.

The benefits of mental health outweigh the effort it takes to practice to improve it. All people face difficulties, but the ability to handle them can grow.

Mental Health Awareness Month

Mental Health Awareness Month (also called Mental Health Month) has been observed in the United States since 1949. It occurs every May, with local events and film screenings and other media. 

It was started by Mental Health America, which was known as the National Association for Mental Health at that time. Each year, organizations interested in mental health sponsor a number of activities that are based on a different theme each year. The theme for 2020 was “Tools 2 Thrive.” 

It was chosen because of the anxiety caused by the global pandemic and to focus on the mental health needs of everyone. For a person in recovery, every month should be mental health month. 

You learned valuable skills to help you handle anxiety, stress, and depression while in treatment. Taking care of your mental health needs should become as natural as combing your hair and brushing your teeth.

Are You Taking Care of Yourself?

Are you in recovery and finding it difficult to stay abstinent? If the stresses of life have become too much for you, I have laid out some strategies for you to use. If you need help figuring it out, we can help at Coastal Detox. 

Have the stresses of life in recovery gotten to be too much, and you had a relapse? You may need to go back to treatment and tweak your recovery plan. Have you never been to treatment, and made the difficult decision to try? In any case, you don’t have to do it alone. 

We have an experienced, professional staff you can trust to help you with your condition. You can contact us here. 

What is Fentanyl and How Does It Work?

Fentanyl is a drug classified as an opioid, like morphine and heroin. Opioids are all drugs that come from the opium poppy plant. While some of them can be made from opium poppy directly, others are manufactured in labs. 

Opioids act directly in the opioid receptors, which are responsible for managing how we feel pain and pleasure. These drugs then help release chemicals that make the user feel relaxed. These substances also affect people’s sensibility to pain. Prescription opioids are mainly used for pain management for individuals who have chronic pain or are undergoing procedures like chemotherapy.

It is possible to safely use opioids when prescribed by a doctor, as long as the instructions are followed correctly. However, these drugs are meant to be short-term prescriptions, used only for a few days. Long-term treatment with opioids can be risky and is only recommended for extreme cases. With time, the body can grow accustomed to the rush of chemicals released by opioid use, which can cause chemical and neural imbalances.

That is why many government agencies have made efforts to better control the frequency of prescriptions. Many states have done their best to keep the number of prescriptions as low as possible. The reason for that is because the U.S. is currently going through what is considered an opioid crisis – and the current main culprit is fentanyl. But this issue has gone beyond prescription opioids and has worsened due to illegal versions and analogs.

Fentanyl can also be prescribed legally, and it is often used to treat severe pain associated with advanced cancer. Usually, it is prescribed as a patch or as lozenges, and it can also be injected or used as an oral or nasal spray. But the drug has been diverted since becoming more popular and consumed illegally, often mixed with other drugs like heroin or cocaine. It has been known to be crushed as a powder to facilitate substance abuse.

The Effects of Fentanyl and Addiction

Fentanyl itself acts just like any other opioid – by attaching itself to the opioid receptors, which control pain and emotion. Once it’s done that, it increases dopamine release. This, in turn, affects the brain’s reward center, bringing on a sense of euphoria and relaxation.

The reason why people become addicted to an opioid is that, with time, the brain becomes used to its presence. After prolonged use, it needs the effects generated by fentanyl use to even function properly. Addiction to opioids affects judgment, decision-making, self-control, and other behaviors. For all of these reasons and more, the medical community has come to agree that addiction is a brain disease.

The difference between fentanyl and other legal drugs like morphine is its potency. Compared to morphine, legal fentanyl is around 100 times more potent. This means users have a higher chance of overdosing on it. And what’s worse: fentanyl analogs tend to be even stronger, and since they’re not controlled substances, it’s harder to predict the outcome of use.

Even when using the drug correctly, there are possible adverse side effects. So, naturally, abusing fentanyl can bring on serious issues. The most commonly reported symptoms by people who have used it are:

These, however, are not the only possible issues, and they can get more and more intense. With time, people have reported suffering from arrhythmia, along with chest pains. Others have also had both vision and auditory hallucinations. Slowed breathing, however, can lead to shallow breathing, and some fentanyl users have even stopped breathing while asleep.

What is Fentanyl and How Does It Work?

This slowed breathing can also lead to another life-threatening issue, called hypoxia. This condition is characterized by lowered levels of oxygen reaching the brain. Hypoxia can cause serious, permanent effects, such as brain damage, comas, and even death.

Other issues not related to side effects might arise from fentanyl use. Those who inject the drug and might share needles can contract diseases like HIV and hepatitis. Clouded judgment during the high can lead to risky behavior, such as unprotected sex, putting users at risk of contracting STDs. Kidney and liver complications might be triggered by prolonged use as well. Fentanyl is metabolized in the liver and then broken down in the liver, so it can overwork both organs. 

How Long Does Fentanyl Stay in Your System?

The presence of a drug in the system depends on what is called elimination half-life. In simpler terms, it is the amount of time the body takes to process and eliminate half of the original dose of the drug. Fentanyl is considered a fast-acting opioid, so it might start metabolizing quicker than long-acting ones.

Different possible tests can be done to detect fentanyl in the system: blood, urine, and hair. It is hard to predict the exact time it will take for it not to show up in these tests, but there is a general average:

Blood – anywhere between 5 and 48 hours after the last dose.

Urine (most commonly used by employers) – anywhere between 24 and 72 hours after the last dose.

Hair – up to about 90 days after the last dose.

*It is important to know that there is a possibility for a false positive in case you’ve taken Benadryl (diphenhydramine). Since Benadryl can trigger a false positive, you should inform the lab and/or testing agency in case you’ve taken it before testing.

The reason why you can only get an average of fentanyl half-life is that there are many variables in the equation. In order to know how long fentanyl will stay in the system, a few factors need to be taken into account:

Dose – Since half-life is about half of the original dose taken, the total amount of the drug in the system will affect how long it can be detected. The bigger the dose, the longer it will take to be flushed out completely. 

Metabolism – While there is no “speed” rate for metabolizing drugs, people with impaired renal or liver function will take longer to metabolize it. That is because fentanyl is initially metabolized into norfentanyl in the liver, which is then broken down in the kidneys. Anything that might slow down the metabolism will affect half-life.

Source of pain – For those taking it for pain management, the source of pain will “use” fentanyl at different rates. Those with severe burns, for instance, may experience faster clearance of the drug. This is because of cardiac output and hepatic blood flow, which speed up the process. 

How to Get Fentanyl Out of Your System

Unlike substances like alcohol, fentanyl won’t get out of your system if you drink more water, exercise, sweat, etc. And even after being metabolized, fentanyl leaves detectable metabolites in the system long after being processed. The only way to flush fentanyl out is to stop taking the drug completely. Beating a test is only possible by genuinely not taking the drug.

In case you’re researching this because you’re afraid you might have overdosed, you need to seek medical attention. The only drug administered during an overdose is called naloxone. It does not remove the toxins from the system, it just blocks opiate receptors in the body. They are administered by trained professionals once they get on the scene. 

Naloxone only acts for about 30-90 minutes after being administered. By that time, however, opioids might still be active in the system. It is only an immediate measure to be taken in an emergency, but it doesn’t clear the system of opioids. That is why you must call for help in case of an overdose, as naloxone is only a temporary solution.

Blocking opiate receptors instantly means that you will go into withdrawal, and may start experiencing its symptoms. One of the most common symptoms is vomiting. That said, if the person is unconscious, they should be put in a safe position to avoid vomit aspiration. Another reported symptom is dope sickness, which will also be temporary.

Get Rid of Fentanyl Dependence Safely At Coastal Detox

Fentanyl is currently one of the biggest menaces in the U.S. for drug and alcohol addiction. Thousands of families have been impacted by its devastating effects. But luckily, the medical and psychiatric community has been learning and preparing for it, coming up with ways to overcome this addiction. 

At Coastal Detox, we are proud to be a part of the solution, designing programs made to help those addicted to fentanyl to get clean and healthy again.

We have designed programs to suit everyone’s needs, no matter the level of addiction. Our addiction treatment pairs medical and psychiatric knowledge and supervision with holistic techniques. All treatment sessions are done at our unit in Stuart, in state-of-the-art facilities, with a team prepared for any emergencies.

If you or a loved one are in dire need of help, contact us today via telephone or online. Our team will be able to answer any questions you might have and provide all the information you need. We’ll be happy to tell you more about our multiple treatment programs and the possible solutions to your problem. You can even schedule a tour of our facilities to see how you feel. We hope to be the ones to guide you in your path to recovery, and we hope you’ll start today.

Illegal and legal drugs work on the brain in a variety of ways. One of the ways they work is they change the way that neurotransmitters work in the brain, which changes the user’s emotions and, ultimately, the way they think and behave. Neurotransmitters are the chemicals that are sent between brain cells that relay information. They are not permanent parts of the physical brain like brain cells. Often the brain reabsorbs neurotransmitters. 

We at Coastal Detox are committed to not only educating our patients on the effects of substances but also educating the general public in hopes that people will be able to be better prepared for their fight against the drug addiction epidemic.

What Do Neurons Do?

They send messages through chemicals released from the synapses in the brain. Brain cells (also known as neurons) do not touch each other. The synapse is the part of the neuron that is closest to the other neuron. Neurotransmitters can also signal the brain cells do certain things, producing feelings like anger, joy, anxiety, and in people with substance abuse disorder, substance cravings. 

Drugs such as heroin, Zoloft, alcohol, and other substances affect the neurotransmitters in the brain, producing a pleasurable high and often undesirable side effects like depression. In some cases, they produce psychosis, and, ultimately, addiction.      

Neurotransmitters also help the neurons regulate:

  • Mood
  • Coordination
  • Breathing 
  • Heart rate
  • Ability to learn
  • Emotions
  • Physical sensations 

And almost anything else that goes on in the body and the brain. 

Do Brain Cells Affect Neurotransmitters?

When someone uses a substance such as ketamine, opioid-like oxycodone, alcohol, or methamphetamines, the effect is determined by which neurotransmitters they affect. Most of these substances bind to the neurotransmitters directly. Many substances affect multiple neurotransmitters at once. There are dozens of neurotransmitters that scientists have identified, and our understanding of how the brain and neurotransmitters work and their different parts is continually growing.

What is Dopamine?

Dopamine is used by the body to regulate:

  • Learning
  • Motivation
  • Kidney function
  • Sleep
  • Mood
  • Aggression
  • Anger
  • Happiness
  • Anxiety
  • Sadness 
  • Attention
  • Pain processing
  • Control of nausea and vomiting

Dopamine is one of the most famous neurotransmitters.

How Do Substances Affect Neurotransmitters?

Drugs like methamphetamine, heroin, prescription opioids, alcohol, and many more affect the brain’s use and output of neurotransmitters. Some substances speed up the production of neurotransmitters, others slow down productions, and some even mimic neurotransmitters. The way that the neurotransmitters speed up or slow down the production of other neurotransmitters is that they bind to or mimic other neurotransmitters in a way that sends a signal to the brain cell to tell that brain cell to produce more or less of another neurotransmitter.

What Will Your Brain Do If You Stop Taking Substances?

Depending on the substance and length of abuse, it can take days to years to regain normal neurotransmitter production in your brain. 

Some substances, like heroin, affect the brain in the same way that a natural neurotransmitter would and stimulate the neuron it bonds to make it produce other neurotransmitters like dopamine. All substances, both legal and illegal, change the way that the brain operates.

For example: if someone takes a drug like methamphetamine (also known as meth or ice), the brain will stop producing some of its own neurotransmitters (dopamine). After taking meth in high doses for an extended period of time, dopamine production can severely slow down the brain’s natural production for up to 4 years. 

Is Dopamine the Only Thing That Causes Addiction?

While dopamine and its production in the brain are important to how an addiction is formed, progresses, and how sobriety can be found it is not the only element in the process. Some scientists now think that dopamine has more to do with reinforcement than reward. However, dopamine is still is thought to help produce a pleasurable effect.

Can I Get Dopamine Supplements?

There is no over the counter supplement version of dopamine. However, there is a prescription version known as Inotropic. This medication is only available by a doctor’s prescription. 

Inotropic can have serious side effects even when a doctor is closely monitoring the patient. Online sources of Inotropic and other prescription dopamine products are not advised and are often unregulated. This means that they might be contaminated or even a different substance than advertised. There is no way to verify what you are buying. 

Incorrect usage of synthetic dopamine can cause:

What is Serotonin? 

The second most famous chemical in the brain is serotonin. There is some debate among scientists about whether serotonin is a neurotransmitter or a hormone. Hormones, like neurotransmitters, are also signals that the brain cells produce to coordinate their behavior with each other and with the body in general. Like dopamine, serotonin has a huge effect on the brain, serotonin effects:

  • Moods including
  • Aggression
  • Anger
  • Happiness
  • Anxiety
  • Sadness 
  • Confusion
  • Self-esteem
  • Bone density
  • Blood clotting abilities
  • Control nausea and vomiting

In other words, serotonin affects a lot of the same cells in the same ways that dopamine does as well as some others. The brain is very complicated. Similar does not mean the same. 

What are the Main Substances That Interact With Neurotransmitters?

There are seven types of drugs, and they interact with neurotransmitters in different ways.

Central Nervous System (CNC) Depressants

Also simply known as depressants, these drugs include:

These are just a few examples of depressant substances. Most of these substances are commonly abused, especially opioids. These substances depress the brain cell’s actives causing relaxation, sleepiness, euphoria, increased confidence, mood swings, vomiting and/or nausea, unconsciousness, coma, and sometimes death. Depressants work by increasing the activity of the neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA). This reduces brain activity and makes the heart and other organs slow down.

Central Nervous System (CNS) Stimulants

CNS Stimulants vs. Depressants

Stimulants have the opposite effect of depressants. They increase alertness, attention, and energy. They increase the amount of the neurotransmitters dopamine and norepinephrine. The feeling that the abuser of stimulants gets is an energetic, euphoric rush. Some users of stimulants have been known to stay awake for days at a time.

Some examples of stimulants are:


Hallucinogens produce varying effects on a person. Often people hallucinate or see, hear, and touch things that are not there. The effects of hallucinogens vary according to the person, their mood, what other substances they are taking, and other factors. In other words, it is hard to tell how a hallucinogen will affect any particular person at any particular time. Having a bad reaction to a hallucination is known as a ‘bad trip’. 

Cross Tolerance in Hallucinogens

Cross tolerance is when a person has a tolerance to one substance and it heightens the tolerance to another substance at the same time. Tolerance is when someone needs to take more of the substance, they are abusing to get the same pleasurable effects. One example of cross-tolerance is that many hallucinogens such as peyote and Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) may produce a tolerance to each other as well as a tolerance to psilocybin, also known as magic mushrooms.

How Do Psychedelic Substances Disrupt Neurotransmitters in the Brain?

Mood altering drugs like LSD heighten serotonin levels significantly. All hallucinogens stimulate serotonin production. Serotonin is another famous neurotransmitter. In particular, they stimulate 2A receptors. This can cause the neurons to fall out of sync with each other to some degree.  

Dissociative Anesthetics

Dissociative anesthetics inhibit the sensation of pain and can cause the user to feel dissociated or disconnected from the world around them and/or themselves. People often make bad decisions because their brain cells are disturbed by drugs. 

Ketamine Use and How It Affects Neurotransmitters

One of the drugs, ketamine, has been used as an anesthetic for people undergoing surgery and has also used in veterinary practices. Ketamine is also used as an antidepressant for people with hard to treat depression. It affects the GABA, glutamine, and serotonin neurotransmitters. It causes a rapid surge in both glutamine and GABA. Ketamine can also affect a person 24 hours after they take it. This means that a ketamine high is long-lasting. Some of the effects of ketamine when used at too high of a dose, which is easy as it is so strong.

Ketamine abuse can cause:

Narcotic Analgesics or Opioids Effect on Neurotransmitters

These drugs stimulate dopamine production in the brain and prevent dopamine from being reabsorbed by the brain, causing an extremely pleasurable experience. Narcotic analgesics are drugs like heroin, opium, methadone, and heroin. Opioids bind to specialized opioid receptors in the brain and physically change the brain.

Opioids Produce Dopamine

Opioids are very commonly abused because they also make the brain produce more dopamine and stop it from being reabsorbed by the brain. Several opioids have medical uses, including fentanyl and methadone. 

Fentanyl is used in a medical setting for people who are expecting extreme pain like late-stage cancer patients. Not only is methadone used to taper people off other opioids medically, but methadone, although it is an often abused opioid, is also used to help wean people off other opioids such as heroin as well as alcohol. 

Inhalants Effect on Neurotransmitters

Most inhalants slow down the brain, and the effect that people notice is similar to alcohol, such as slurred speech, euphoria, lack of coordination, and dizziness. Inhalants are, like the name suggests, drugs that are generally inhaled rather than snorted, injected, or taken orally. Some common inhalants are paint thinner, hair spray, nitrates (prescription medication for chest pain). 

Cannabis (Marijuana) and It’s Effect on Neurotransmitters

Cannabis is the scientific name for marijuana. Cannabis use to thought to permanently change the chemical and physical makeup of the brain. The full effects of cannabis are widely disputed.

Alcohol and It’s Effect on Neurotransmitters

Alcohol is one of the most abused substances in the world. 61 million people in the United States abuse alcohol by binge drinking, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. 16 million people reported to be heavy alcohol uses, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration as well.

Why is Alcohol Addiction Hard to Treat?

Alcohol substance abuse can be hard to treat because part of the treatment plan for continued sobriety is avoiding places where you used to abuse the substance. For some people, the presence of alcohol alone could trigger the person with substance abuse at the beginning of a person’s road to recovery to crave alcohol. This makes it hard if not nearly impossible for someone to stop abusing alcohol on their own if they have an addiction. It is very important to get clinical help for any substance abuse problem you might have, including alcohol abuse.  

How Alcohol Affects Equilibrium in the Brain

The brain tries to maintain a certain balance or equilibrium in its neurotransmitters. Substances like alcohol shift the brain’s equilibrium by making the brain give out certain neurotransmitters like GABA. Over a long period of time, the brain starts to try to combat this slow down by giving out neurotransmitters such as glutamate to try to speed itself back up and put itself back in a healthy equilibrium. This does not protect the brain very much from the negative effects of alcohol. 

Does Alcohol Create Dopamine?

Another reason that alcohol is so addictive is that it stimulates the production of dopamine from the brain cells at a higher rate than the brain cells would naturally produce dopamine on their own. Many substances abused provide a change in dopamine levels. Some prevent the brain from reabsorbing dopamine. 

What is Naltrexone, and Can It Help Reduce Alcohol Cravings?

Alcohol dependence can be eased with naltrexone. Naltrexone helps people gain their sobriety by helping suppress their urge to consume alcohol. Naltrexone is also used in medical tapering for opioid dependence. Methadone, a well-known opioid that is often abused, is also used to help people taper off alcohol.

There is No Miracle Cure to Addiction

As you are starting your road to sobriety, please do not be tempted to take quick fixes or miracle “cures” of any sort. These are dangerous. Unless something is prescribed or recommended by a licensed medical professional that specializes in addiction treatment, it is important not to do it. The brain is very complex, and something that might seem common sense on the surface might actually be very, very bad for you. It could even be deadly.

Professional Care is Important During Detoxification

These symptoms are another reason that it is important to have professional care while you are going through detoxification for alcohol abuse. Detox can be safe, but it is important to have professional care. The brain reacts like this because the neurotransmitters it was using to try to combat the effects of the alcohol have not yet had time to readjust themselves and that can be hard for the brain to deal with.

Can Abusing Substance For Too Long Cause Permanent Damage?

Abusing substances for a long period of time has very negative consequences for the user’s brain and body. The human body was not meant to use these substances at this level for very long, if at all. 

However, many effects of these substances can be reversed over a long period of time. These positive changes are called neuroplasticity. Neuroplasticity is when the brain makes new connections and pathways around the damaged parts of the brain. Thanks to neuroplasticity, the brain will be able to enjoy things that it used to enjoy before the substance abuse disorder developed. 

How Can I Recover?

There is no quick fix for addiction recovery. However, your road to recovery will become valuable to you. You will form new, strong friendships. Your family will start to want to spend time with you. And you will not have to constantly worry about where you are going to get your next dose of substances from or be afraid of the violence that is usually part of that world. You will get your life back. 

When you are ready for help for your substance use disorder, please contact us.










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Real Client Testimonials

  • Before coming to coastal I was hopeless, helpless, and my family wanted nothing to do with me. It wasn’t the first detox I’d ever been to, but it was the only one who showed me so much love and compassion. They gave me hope. It’s hard to put into words the amount of gratitude I have for this facility. The employees were my family when I had none. The staff went out of their way to make sure not only were my physical needs taken care of, but my emotional needs as well. From the first phone call prior to admission, to helping me set up continuing care, they never missed a beat. Even going as far as to help me with my legal issues via Zoom court. This isn’t just a detox, they are the family I never had. All of the techs, especially Karen, are phenomenal. They will take the time to listen to you, laugh, and cry(if needed) with you. If you are reading this and you or your loved one is suffering like I was, go to Coastal Detox. The level of care is more than I could ever put into a review. It wasn’t the first detox I’d been to, but it has been my last; I owe them everything I have today, including my life.

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    Travis B.
  • Had a really good experience at Coastal. The staff really went above and beyond in helping me get in and gave me the respect l, space and care I needed after I first got there. As I started to fell better they encouraged me to take part in groups which helped get me out of my head and bring positivity and health to my thinking. They had a great massage therapist, who came daily and it was evident the nursing staff genuinely cared. Got to know some of the staff as well and I’m grateful for the cooks Joe and Chris. Those guys literally made us sirloins and pork chops for dinner. Also I gotta thank Chris and Chris for helping me get in and setting me up with a transition plan. Real grateful for that help, I’m not sure if it’s management intention to hire guys named Chris but they got a good thing going there. Overall, I’m clean and sober today and walking it out. Coastal gave me a base that set me up for the success that I’m walking in today

    Brandon B. Avatar
    Brandon B.
  • My family is very thankful for Coastal Detox. They have went above and beyond for my son a few times. Unfortunately he has needed their help more than once and they have ever turned their back on him, even when he was at his worst. Jeannie and Chris have been amazing and kept me informed through the entire process. They truly care about the addict and want to help them especially when it would be easy to give up on them. I had many detox facilities be rude and uncaring to me when I was searching for help for my son, but Coastal never did that to us. I don't know the names of all the team members that have helped my son but I know their are many and y'all are angels!! One day we will be able to pay it forward and help someone as you have helped us. Thank you for all you do!!

    Brenda A. Avatar
    Brenda A.
  • Can not say enough nice things about Coastal Detox & staff. Family member was there, told me five stars for the facility & all whom she interacted with. Said the facilities, ambience..., cleanliness, grounds, food, (think their chef is five stars), were all top shelf. All I interacted with personally & on the phone were patient, professional, responsive & caring. Kudos to so many: Jeannie Jones, Clinical Director whom I spent the most face to face time with: great oversight, patience & follow thru. Raquel Barker, Therapist was so understanding & on spot with her assessments/care. Kris Garrigus Admissions Director, another Coastal professional whom I cannot say enough nice things about, always so patient & responsive to my probably too frequent inquires. Not to be forgotten is Judy Tucker, Director of Operations she too so patiently "put up with me"
    I highly recommend Coastal Detox

    Susan C. Avatar
    Susan C.
  • Can not say enough nice things about Coastal Detox & staff. Family member was there, told me five stars for the facility & all whom she interacted with. Said the facilities, ambience..., cleanliness, grounds, food, (think their chef is five stars), were all top shelf. All I interacted with personally & on the phone were patient, professional, responsive & caring. Kudos to so many: Jeannie Jones, Clinical Director whom I spent the most face to face time with: great oversight, patience & follow thru. Raquel Barker, Therapist was so understanding & on spot with her assessments/care. Kris Garrigus Admissions Director, another Coastal professional whom I cannot say enough nice things about, always so patient & responsive to my probably too frequent inquires. Not to be forgotten is Judy Tucker, Director of Operations she too so patiently "put up with me"
    I highly recommend Coastal Detox

    Susan C. Avatar
    Susan C.

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