what is opioid withdrawal treatment protocol


If you have acquired an opioid dependency or addiction, you may be seeking guidance for detox and treatment solutions. The path to recovery starts with completing a medical detox. So, what is opioid withdrawal treatment protocol and what are the next steps? For answers, read on.

What are Opioids?

Opioids are narcotic drugs that provide pain relief. The natural opioids that are derived from the opium poppy plant, include opium, morphine, heroin, and codeine.

The synthetic opioids that are created in the lab mimic the effects of the poppy plant. Of all the prescribed opioids, hydrocodone (Vicodin) is the most commonly abused. Synthetic analgesics include:

  • Oxycodone
  • Meperidine
  • Fentanyl
  • Hydrocodone
  • Opana
  • Hydromorphone
  • Oxycodone with acetaminophen

Whether the drugs are used for pain relief or recreation, it is dangerous to take opioids for an extended period. Continued use of opioids increases tolerance to the drug’s effects. This means that it takes more of the drug to achieve the desired effects, which in turn increases the risk of addiction. Once the brain imprints a positive reward connection with the opioid, drug-seeking becomes obsessive.

With increased dosing, the brain is flooded with dopamine, causing it to eventually stop producing natural dopamine. This means the person can no longer feel positive emotions without the drug producing the dopamine effect.

What are Signs of Opioid Abuse or Addiction?

Clear signs emerge when someone is misusing opioids or has become addicted. These include:

  • Mood swings.
  • Stealing money or items they can sell for drugs
  • Changes in eating habits
  • Changes in sleeping habits
  • Finishing a prescription for pain medication early.
  • Using the opioids in ways not intended, like crushing the pills to snort the drug.
  • Doctors shopping for more prescription opioids
  • Chronic constipation
  • Isolating from friends and family.
  • Neglects responsibilities
  • Decline in work performance
  • Showing signs of drug use, like pinpoint pupils, slurring speech, nodding out, or needle marks.
  • Showing withdrawal symptoms and side effects

Dangers of Opioid Addiction

Misuse of opioids may result in various long-term adverse effects. These include:

  • Organ damage – Adverse health effects, such as liver damage, kidney damage, cognitive difficulties, and serotonin syndrome.
  • Legal problems – Legal trouble from driving while under the influence or theft.
  • Financial problems – Job loss, the cost of the drugs, and not paying the bills lead to money problems.
  • Relationship problems – Continued drug use adversely impacts a relationship, friendship, or marriage.
  • Overdose. According to the CDC, over 75% of drug overdose deaths involved an opioid. Fentanyl is the leading killer among opioid deaths.

Opioid Withdrawal Treatment Protocol

The opioid withdrawal treatment protocol is referred to as a medical detox. A team of detox experts under the supervision of a physician will oversee the detox and withdrawal process.

During the process, certain medications are accessed to assist the individual by reducing cravings and withdrawal symptoms. These drugs work by attaching to the brain’s opioid receptors and tricking the brain into thinking it has received the opioid of abuse.

The replacement drug may be prescribed for the first several months of recovery and is strictly regulated and monitored. This helps the individual transition into recovery with a reduced risk of relapse.

Opioid Detox Timeline

The opioid detox and withdrawal process follows a fairly predictable path involving three distinct stages:

Stage One

During the first 24-48 hours withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Agitation
  • Anxiety
  • Aching muscles
  • Bone pain
  • Cravings
  • Chills
  • Lethargy
  • Runny eyes and nose
  • Sleeplessness
  • Excessive sweating
  • Excessive yawning

Stage Two

Days 3-5 withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Abdominal cramps.
  • Diarrhea
  • Dilated pupils
  • Goosebumps.
  • Kicking motions
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

Stage Three

Most withdrawal signs are subsiding in this final stage.

Treatment Solutions for Opioid Addiction

The main goal of the detox team is to safely guide you through withdrawal and into treatment. Once in treatment, you will engage in the following treatment plan activities:

  • Psychotherapy: Therapy involves accessing several evidence-based therapies to effectively guide you toward embracing new healthy thought patterns. The therapist will also introduce you to new coping skills that help to safeguard recovery. Therapy can help with a co-occurring mental health disorder or any underlying emotional issues that may be intensifying the substance use disorder.
  • Group therapy: Group therapy involves gathering small groups of individuals in recovery. They share and discuss their personal experiences with one another. This shared experience can provide peer support and foster new friendships.
  • Twelve-step program: The 12-step program is often included in addiction treatment as it provides a road map toward achieving a sustained recovery. After completing treatment, you are encouraged to locate a group in your area to continue in the 12-step program.
  • Education: Information is a powerful tool in recovery, as it teaches you how opioids affect the brain and cause addiction. This knowledge can act as a deterrent to relapse. You will also be coached to develop your own unique relapse prevention plan.
  • Other therapies: Holistic and experiential activities help promote relaxation and reduce stress, which in turn helps to prevent relapse. These include yoga, meditation, art therapy, journaling, and meditation.
  • Aftercare services: Aftercare planning is an essential aspect of recovery success. These actions can help reinforce early recovery, which is the most vulnerable period. Aftercare actions include outpatient programs, joining a recovery community, and possibly spending a few months in sober living. If a recovery medication is prescribed, ongoing medical checkups are also part of aftercare.

Being informed about the opioid withdrawal treatment protocol is the first step toward your recovery. Follow through by enrolling in a residential detox and treatment program today.

Rehabs Malibu Provides Medical Detox for Opioid Withdrawal

Rehabs Malibu is a luxury residential addiction treatment program in beautiful Malibu, CA. If you or a loved one is ready to get clean and sober, we can take it from there. Please reach out today with any questions you might have, such as what is opioid withdrawal treatment protocol at (424) 425-3541.

tramadol with alcohol

Opioids like tramadol are dispensed with a warning not to drink alcohol while taking these drugs. Mixing prescription pills and alcohol can result in suppressed breathing and even unconsciousness. Read on to learn more about the dangers of mixing tramadol with alcohol.

Learn about Tramadol

Tramadol is a prescription pain medication that is sold under the brand name Ultram. This drug is similar to other synthetic opioids, in that it blocks the pain receptors in the brain. Tramadol is prescribed to manage moderate to severe pain. It is unique among this class of drugs, as it also works as an antidepressant.

Tramadol is helpful for treating pain caused by stroke, diabetes, injuries, and chronic pain. Tramadol is a common veterinary drug as well.

When compared with other opioids, tramadol is considered less apt to lead to abuse and addiction. This explains why it has a Schedule IV status instead of a Schedule II status like other opioids. The potency of tramadol is about one-tenth the strength of morphine.

Even so, tramadol use can result in a substance use disorder. Not only does tramadol pose the danger of addiction or dependence, but it is also known to cause neurological adverse effects. These include Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.

Why It’s Risky to Mix Tramadol with Alcohol

Alcohol and tramadol, an opioid, both have a depressive effect on the brain and central nervous system. This means that both substances slow down the nerve activity in the body.

Tramadol will attach to the opioid receptors in the brain and block the sensation of pain. When mixing the opioids with alcohol, dangerous symptoms can result. These include extreme drowsiness, dizziness, dehydration, seizures, respiratory failure, coma, and even death.

What are the signs of Tramadol and alcohol overdose?

Because mixing tramadol and alcohol will cause the nervous system to slow down, it can lead to an overdose. This occurs as the result of ingesting more of these two substances than is safe. The body cannot process the substances, causing a toxic level. This results in an overdose.

The signs and symptoms of alcohol and tramadol overdose include:

  • Repressed breathing.
  • Slowed heart rate.
  • Clammy skin.
  • Mental confusion.
  • Frequent vomiting.
  • Bluish lips or fingertips.
  • Respiratory arrest.
  • Loss of consciousness.
  • Coma
  • Death

Are You Addicted to Tramadol and Alcohol?

With extended use of tramadol and alcohol, there is a risk of becoming addicted. Both these substances affect the brain’s reward system due to the release of dopamine. This prompts the person to continue using these drugs, which may lead to addiction or dependence.

Signs of tramadol addiction include:

  • Sleep problems.
  • Decreased appetite.
  • Lack of energy.
  • Constipation
  • High blood pressure.
  • Increased heart rate.
  • Pinpoint pupils.
  • Hyper-arousal.
  • Lack of motivation.
  • Mood swings.
  • Mental confusion.
  • Irritability
  • Euphoric mood when high.
  • Anxiety
  • Psychosis
  • Withdrawal symptoms.

Signs of alcohol addiction:

  • Bloated belly or face.
  • Flushed face.
  • Glassy eyes.
  • Hand tremors.
  • Excessive sweating.
  • Sleep problems.
  • Weight gain or loss.
  • Disheveled appearance.
  • Reduced coordination; unsteady.
  • More bruises than normal.
  • Numbness or tingling in the feet.
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Withdrawal symptoms.

Tramadol and Alcohol Detox and Withdrawal

If you are dependent or addicted to tramadol and alcohol, you will first complete a medically supervised detox. Here is what to expect:

Tramadol withdrawal. Tramadol detox is very uncomfortable and should be done under a doctor’s supervision.  Because tapering the dosage is a common practice in aiding in withdrawal, a doctor may schedule a stepped down dosing protocol and monitor the withdrawal symptoms over a period of weeks.

Because tramadol is an opioid, withdrawal symptoms can mimic symptoms of other opioids Tramadol also has non-opioid properties, however, which can cause psychological withdrawal effects. Symptoms include:

  • Agitation
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Headaches
  • Confusion
  • Restless legs
  • Poor appetite
  • Sweating
  • Muscle pain
  • Blurred vision
  • Insomnia
  • Hallucinations
  • Mood swings
  • Irritability
  • Tingling sensations
  • Diarrhea
  • Nightmares
  • Dizziness

Alcohol withdrawal. Alcohol detox can be unpredictable and risky, depending on how severe the alcohol use disorder is. This explains why it is always advised to be under the guidance of a medical doctor during alcohol detox. Alcohol withdrawal takes about one week on average. Withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Sweating
  • Shaking
  • Headache
  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • Irritability
  • Anxiety
  • Increased heart rate.
  • Increased blood pressure.
  • Heart palpitations.
  • Mood swings.
  • Insomnia
  • Confusion
  • Hallucinations
  • Brain fog.
  • Depression
  • Nervousness
  • Seizures
  • DTs

To reduce the discomfort, over-the-counter or prescription drugs are prescribed to help manage the symptoms.

Polysubstance Addiction Treatment Options

After detox is complete, you should begin treatment immediately. Treating the addiction disorder is essential for achieving sustained sobriety. Addiction behaviors have developed over a lengthy period of time and must be replaced with new thought/behavior patterns. Treatment helps by teaching these methods, along with the 12 steps of A.A.’s new recovery tools, and a relapse prevention plan.

If you have found yourself with a polysubstance addiction, outpatient treatment is simply not going to be sufficient. To be successful long-term, a residential treatment program is a wise choice. The length of time in treatment depends on how severe the polysubstance addiction is, with three months as the minimum stay.

Here is what to expect while in treatment:

  • Group Therapy. You will join your peers in recovery to discuss topics related to your personal journey. This allows you to bond with others and gives you a sense of peer support while in treatment.
  • Individual Therapy. Private therapy sessions with a licensed therapist provide a more intensive approach to tackling dysfunctional thought and behavior patterns.
  • 12-Step Program. The A.A. model is infused into the treatment program to provide structure in recovery.
  • Education. You will learn how the tramadol and alcohol impact the brain and result in addiction.
  • Holistic Methods. Learning how to manage stress will help you while you’re in treatment, and also as a coping tool in recovery.

Rehabs Malibu Offers Comprehensive Treatment for Polysubstance Use Disorder

Rehabs Malibu provides individuals seeking sobriety with a luxury recovery setting. We combine expertise with premier accommodations and amenities to offer the perfect start for your recovery journey. If you have been mixing tramadol with alcohol and it’s resulted in dependence or addiction, we are here to help you. Call us today at (424) 425-3541.

luxury mental health facilities

Are you experiencing a mental health condition that is causing impairment in your daily functioning? If so, you don’t have to face the struggle alone. Luxury mental health facilities are designed to provide top-of-the-line care while you engage in various therapeutic activities.

What are Luxury Mental Health Facilities?

If you are thinking about a residential mental health program, consider where you’d like to spend all that time. The environment you’ll be residing in while in treatment may be very important to you. If you prefer an upscale living environment, then a luxury mental health facility is a great treatment option.

These luxury programs feature:

  • Private rooms and baths.
  • A beautiful setting.
  • A private estate with limited beds.
  • Deluxe accommodations.
  • Gourmet meals.
  • Spa-like amenities.
  • Beautiful grounds with pools and spas.
  • Personal trainers.
  • More personalized care.
  • Special field trips or outings.
  • Tailored treatment plans.

How to Recognize the Signs of Mental Distress

Before delving into the benefits of luxury mental health treatment programs, let’s explore what a mental health crisis looks like. How would you even know you need a residential program?

In most cases, a mental health struggle does not come on suddenly. There is a slow escalation in the signs and symptoms that eventually become concerning. This may lead you to a local doctor or therapist to gain some insights about what the mental health issue might be. In many cases, you are provided with medication and psychotherapy to help manage the condition.

But when the symptoms worsen, and you are not finding the current therapies effective, you or your loved ones may seek a higher level of care. Some of the signs of mental health distress include:

  • Personality changes.
  • Aggressive or violent behaviors.
  • Withdrawing from friends and family.
  • Engaging in self-harm.
  • Ignoring appearance and hygiene.
  • Loss of touch with reality.
  • Sleep problems.
  • Changes in eating habits.
  • Intense fatigue.
  • Difficulty performing simple tasks
  • Extreme fear.
  • Severe mood swings
  • Difficulty communicating or expressing thoughts.
  • Increased substance abuse.
  • Suicidal thoughts.

If you notice a few of these symptoms in your own behaviors, you should meet with a mental health expert who can guide your next steps. There are different levels of care available for mental health treatment, and this expert can offer recommendations.

What Mental Health Conditions Are Treated at Luxury Facilities?

A high-quality residential mental health center will be staffed with board-certified psychiatrists, a medical doctor, and licensed therapists. This allows the center to provide expert treatment for a wide range of mental health disorders, such as:

  • Anxiety disorders. Anxiety disorders rank highest in prevalence in the U.S. and include:
    • Generalized anxiety disorder
    • Phobias
    • Social anxiety
    • Panic disorder,
    • Obsessive-compulsive disorder
    • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Depressive disorders. More than 21 million U.S. adults struggle with a depressive disorder, such as:
    • Major depressive disorder.
    • Persistent depressive disorder.
    • Postpartum depression.
    • Premenopausal dysphoric disorder.
    • Seasonal affective disorder.
  • Mood disorders. These include:
    • Bipolar I disorder.
    • Bipolar II disorder.
    • Cyclothymic disorder.
  • Personality disorders. These complex mental health disorders include:
    • Narcissistic personality disorder.
    • Histrionic personality disorder.
    • Borderline personality disorder.
    • Schizoid personality disorder.
    • Antisocial personality disorder.
  • Psychotic disorders. These include:
    • Schizophrenia
    • Schizoaffective disorder.
    • Brief psychotic disorder.
    • Delusional disorder.
    • Schizophreniform disorder.

Luxury Mental Health Treatment

When seeking the very finest residential mental health support, a luxury program is going to be your best bet. While in treatment, you will enjoy the finest living conditions while receiving the mental health support you deserve.

The length of your stay in treatment depends to a large extent on the actual diagnosis. This will be determined after you complete a formal assessment interview. During the interview, you will discuss your present symptoms, mental health history, health history, and substance use history. You will be asked how the present mental health state impacts your job, your family, and your health.

After a diagnosis is arrived at, a tailored treatment plan is made for you. It will take into account the unique features of your condition and other factors. A treatment plan includes a list of the therapies and holistic methods that will help you, as well as medications.

Treatment will include:

Evidence-Based Therapies. These are therapies that have been highly researched through studies and trials. They are deemed to be effective in the treatment of a condition, yieldin statistically significant results. Some of these include:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy
  • Dialectical behavior therapy
  • Interpersonal therapy.
  • Trauma-based therapy.
  • Psychodynamic therapy.

Therapies are offered in many forms. There are private one-on-one sessions, group sessions, family sessions, and process groups.

Medication. Psychiatric treatment often involves a medication that targets mental illness. The drugs are designed to reduce symptoms, manage symptoms, and improve quality of life.

Holistic Activities. What is great about luxury mental health facilities is their inclusion of holistic and experiential services. These are activities that allow you to reduce stress levels and to reach a quiet, calm state. This can be helpful in treatment, as some people feel anxious at first.

What About Dual Diagnosis Treatment?

Many folks struggle with a co-occurring substance use disorder along with their mental health challenge. The problem some will have is choosing a rehab that does not treat mental health issues or a mental health program that excludes substance use treatment.

When the mental health challenge is not addressed in rehab, it is highly doubtful that sobriety can be sustained. This is because the mental health problem is a common driver of substance abuse.

For instance, many times someone with bipolar disorder or depression will misuse alcohol to help numb the mental health symptoms. Someone with anxiety may misuse pills, like Xanax, to calm them and then become addicted. If you have a mental health disorder with comorbid substance use disorder, you will require a dual diagnosis program.

Rehabs Malibu Luxury Mental Health Facility

Rehabs Malibu provides primary mental health and dual diagnosis treatment within a luxury setting. We provide innovative care using a highly effective blend of evidence-based interventions, holistic methods, and medication management. Please call today for more details about the program at (424) 425-3541.

high end treatment center

If you are in need of treatment for substance use disorder, why not seek out the very best? To enhance the rehab experience, consider treating yourself to a little pampering. High-end treatment centers for addiction recovery can provide some luxury alongside the evidence-based care.

What Is a High End Treatment Center?

One of the many options available for substance abuse treatment is the luxury rehab. These are high-end treatment centers for addiction or dependency that cater to the well-to-do segment of the market.

When someone seeks out an upscale treatment setting they do so with intention. They wish to spend their time in treatment with the creature comforts to which they are accustomed.

The premier treatment centers are very much like what you would expect at a high-end resort. The main difference is that instead of only focusing on spa-like wellness treatments, you are also immersed in evidence-based addiction treatment modalities.

Features to Seek in High-End Addiction Treatment

When you are prepared to plunk down a large sum of money for rehab, you expect to get what you pay for. This means that you are seeking the finest treatment program you can find. So what are the features you should be looking for?

When starting your search for a high-end treatment center for addiction recovery, keep these questions handy. You can request a tour of the rehab or a meeting with a representative, and then fire away:

  1. What licensing does the rehab hold? The treatment center should state licensed, and be CARF or Joint Commission accredited. By complying with the industry standards, patient safety is more secure.
  2. What qualifications do your staff members possess? The staff should be composed of licensed addiction specialists, licensed mental health professionals, and a licensed yoga instructor.
  3. Does your program feature an evidence-based approach? The program should feature therapies that have been shown to be safe and effective. An integrated program blends evidence-based therapies with holistic methods and exercise.
  4. What is your client ratio? Private luxury rehabs tend to have fewer patients, which allows for a higher level of care. Ask how many are admitted to their program at a time.
  5. Do you have testimonials available? The rehab should be able to point you toward published client reviews.
  6. In what ways does your rehab culture exhibit respect for clients? The rehab should prioritize respect between the staff and the clients. The rehab should feel comfortable, positive, and safe.
  7. How do you protect client privacy? Luxury rehabs tend to be more committed to protecting client privacy. Ask what measures they take to ensure client privacy.
  8. Are your treatment plans customized? The rehab should offer tailored treatment plans and case management that is customized for each individual client.
  9. Do you have a family program? The rehab’s treatment elements should include family therapy or family programs.
  10. Do you provide high-quality nutritious meals? The rehab should offer healthy, organic offerings, as well as provide for special dietary needs.
  11. Do you offer alumni services? Luxury rehabs should have an alumni program that provides alumni activities and follow-up after discharge.

If possible, plan to visit your top rehab choices to see firsthand that the facility is clean, orderly, well maintained, and respectful.

Benefits of Luxury Treatment Centers for Addiction

There are a multitude of benefits enjoyed when receiving treatment at a high-end treatment center for addiction. These include:

  • A beautiful setting, such as a coastal, hillside, lakeside, or desert location.
  • An intimate, private home environment.
  • Lovely grounds, furnishings, and amenities.
  • Private rooms.
  • Privacy and discretion.
  • Tailored treatment plans.
  • A higher level of personal attention.
  • A focus on wellness and self-empowerment.
  • Spa-like services, like massage and sauna.

What are Holistic and Evidence-Based Therapies?

Premium rehabs tend to combine evidence-based therapies with holistic methods. The holistic activities help clients delve into their emotional and spiritual selves. This enhances the work they do with the psychotherapist and also teaches critical self-soothing and relaxation techniques.

Evidence-based therapies include types of treatment that have been through clinical studies and were shown to be efficacious. These are mainly therapies based on behavioral psychology that help the person make changes in their choices and actions. Some of the most commonly used evidence-based therapies for addiction treatment include CBT, DBT, CM, and MET.

Payment Options for High-End Treatment Centers

When considering a luxury rehab, of course, the issue of cost will come up in the decision-making. For some people, money is not a problem and they may opt to pay cash for treatment. Others, though, may need some payment options.

Here are some of the ways to pay for a high-end rehab:

  • Insurance. Most health plans cover at least some of the costs of residential detox, addiction treatment, and related services.
  • HSA account. Many executives pay into a health savings account (HAS) for tax purposes. These deposits into the HSA can be deducted from your taxable income and then can be used for addiction treatment.
  • FSA account. Employers may offer employees a benefit called a flexible spending account (FSA). The FSA is a type of savings account that offers tax savings, and the money can be used for addiction treatment.
  • Payment plan. Rehabs may offer in-house financing options through a contracted lender. These payment plans allow you to pay off the expense over a period of many months.
  • Credit card. A client may prefer to pay for the treatment with a credit card to gain airline miles or other rewards. They have the option to pay off the balance after treatment or to make payments over time.
  • Cash. Private pay, or cash, is always a payment option. Private pay is desirable for clients who do not want their data to be shared with an insurance company.

An upscale, exclusive rehab offers the finest rehab experience available. Do consider this type of setting if you are used to high-quality living standards.

Rehabs Malibu Luxury Treatment for Addiction Recovery

Rehabs Malibu is a high-end treatment center for addiction recovery. For more information about the program, please reach out to us today at (888) 429-7279

rehab for the wealthy

If you can splurge on a swanky rehab for the wealthy, why not get sober in the lap of luxury?

Rehabs come in all shapes and sizes. Some rehabs provide only the bare bones basic services and others feature every bell and whistle you can imagine. Within that wide span of rehab options lie the vast majority that provides addiction recovery services in safe, comfortable settings. To learn more about rehabs for the wealthy, read on!

Addiction Does Not Discriminate

Addiction is a complex disease that can affect anyone, no matter what your socio-economic status happens to be. It is important to understand that substance use disorder and addiction is a disease of the brain. There is still much to learn about the causes of addiction, and why a substance can impact people differently. One thing is clear, though – addiction does not discriminate.

However, the type of treatment services you receive does depend to a large extent on a person’s financial resources. Money does buy luxury treatment amenities that you won’t find at a standard rehab center. So, yes the disease of addiction can inflict anyone regardless of his or her station in life. Addiction treatment options, however, are determined largely by the person’s financial means.

What Are Rehabs for the Wealthy?

The luxury rehab option sits at the top of the addiction treatment pyramid. These are the rehabs designed to serve the wealthy, including famous public figures. Because this clientele can afford the best, they seek out luxury treatment centers when they need help for substance abuse.

So, what exactly constitutes rehab for the wealthy? What makes these centers special? Consider these common features of a premier rehab:

  • Upscale facility.
  • Stunning locations.
  • Expert treatment and medical staff.
  • Spa-like services.
  • Recreation
  • Gourmet meals.
  • Privacy
  • Specialized programs.

What To Look for in a Luxury Rehab

Just like any discerning consumer, you will want to get the best rehab for the money. A luxury rehab for the wealthy should have the following features:

  • Evidence-based treatments. The rehab program should be centered on therapies that are shown to be effective for treating addiction. Ask if the rehab uses both evidence-based therapies and holistic methods in their program.
  • Clinical expertise. The luxury rehab should be staffed with licensed addiction specialists and counselors, mental health experts, and medical professionals.
  • Personalized treatment. Luxury rehabs feature smaller scale programs. They have fewer beds, which allows for a higher level of personal care to be provided to each patient.
  • Tailored treatment plans. The rehab should conduct a thorough intake and evaluation process. After this, it should then design a customized treatment plan for each patient.
  • Aftercare planning. The rehab should assign a case manager to guide your recovery after discharge. Ask if they offer alumni activities and aftercare planning.
  • Private and confidential. Luxury rehabs should protect patient privacy at all costs. Ask what measures the treatment center takes to ensure patient privacy.
  • Licensed. Make sure the treatment center is fully licensed by the state. It should also hold CARF and/or Joint Commission accreditation. These agencies ensure that the rehab follows industry safety standards.
  • Clean facility. The rehab should be clean, well maintained, and well managed.
  • Positive rehab culture. The luxury rehab should emanate a sense of respect and dignity for all patients. The rehab setting should feel safe, comfortable, and positive as you tour it.

Therapists Who Understand Addiction

Not all luxury rehabs are created equal. The best of the best will feature a clinical staff of experts, many of whom have had a personal experience with addiction. This is a huge benefit, as these professionals have wrestled with the beast and understand addiction.

An upscale rehab should be willing and able to provide the credentials of its clinical and medical staff. This includes their education, training, licensing, and experience. This is key information when making your selection on the best rehab for your needs. A fancy rehab that lacks this level of expertise is simply a waste.

Treatment at Rehab for the Wealthy

Once you have entered the rehab setting, you will embark on a diverse array of treatment activities and therapies. Here’s what to expect:

  • Medical detox. Based on the severity of the substance problem, it may be necessary to first undergo a medical detox and withdrawal process. The detox can take a few days to a couple of weeks, depending on the severity of the addiction and which substance is involved.
  • Psychotherapy. Private therapy sessions help patients address underlying emotional issues that may be factors in the substance use. Therapists use evidence-based CBT and DBT to guide patients toward making needed changes.
  • Group therapy. Group sessions are a featured core treatment element in recovery programs. These small group sessions offer peer support as patients share their stories and struggles, and learn from each other.
  • 12-Step program. A.A.’s 12-step program provides benchmarks to guide you toward sustained sobriety.
  • Education. Patients learn how a substance impacts the reward center of the brain, which leads to addiction. In this light, they learn how to avoid relapse and will create their own relapse prevention plan.
  • Holistic therapies. Luxury rehabs feature holistic activities that are similar to wellness resorts and spas. These include yoga, swimming, mindfulness, equine therapy, art therapy, meditation, and massage.

What About Mental Health Treatment?

Nearly 38% of those with substance use disorders also have a co-occurring mental health disorder. The most common mental health challenges include depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder. It is impossible to sustain sobriety unless the mental health issue is treated right alongside the addiction.

For this reason, some luxury rehabs specialize in dual diagnosis treatment. There is a psychiatrist on staff and in some cases medication is prescribed to help manage the mental health challenge. If you are struggling with a co-occurring mental health disorder, be sure to seek out a dual diagnosis treatment program.

Rehabs Malibu Luxury Addiction Treatment

Rehabs Malibu is a doctor-owned provider of premier residential treatment for individuals battling substance use disorder. If you are looking for a luxury rehab for the wealthy, check out our world-class program. Call us today at (424) 425-3541.

leave of absence for rehab

Substance addiction is a surprisingly common condition. Employers are very familiar with team members that sometimes need to leave work for a while to receive some help. Taking a leave of absence for rehab should not put your job in jeopardy. There are laws in place to protect an employee’s right to treatment, without the risk of losing their job.

Signs You May Need a Rehab Program

It may have come as a surprise that you ended up with a substance use disorder. The warning signs of addiction often creep in gradually, but little by little the signs of a substance problem emerge.

There are some common signs that point to a substance problem. These include:

  • Tries to stop or cut down but cannot.
  • Declining job performance.
  • Neglecting work and family obligations.
  • Excessive absenteeism.
  • Lying to others about your substance use.
  • Missing important meetings or project deadlines.
  • Neglecting appearance and hygiene.
  • Mood swings.
  • Doctor shopping for more refills
  • Buying drugs from illicit sources.
  • Rapid weight gain or loss.
  • Withdrawing or isolating.
  • Avoiding social events.
  • Physical signs of addiction.
  • Keep using the substance despite the adverse effects.
  • Withdrawal symptoms.

Staging the substance use disorder from mild to severe is based on the number of these signs that are present.

Common Concerns About Taking a Leave of Absence for Rehab

When you start to see the signs of a substance use disorder, it is time to consider going in for treatment. However, even seeing the writing on the wall can still cause a lot of stress. Some of the common concerns about taking a leave of absence for rehab include:

  1. Fear of adverse impact on career. There may be the worry that taking time off to go to rehab will cause a setback in your career.
  2. Impact on coworkers. Taking a lengthy leave of absence may present a challenge for your coworkers. They may have to cover your duties or train a replacement.
  3. Fear of stigma. Some may worry about their professional reputation being damaged because they needed treatment for a substance use disorder.
  4. Loss of income. Not all leave of absence are paid time off. When there is only partial compensation it can cause hardship.

How to Take a Leave of Absence for Rehab

When should you sit down with your boss to request a leave of absence? Is there a strategy that ensures this process goes as smoothly as it possibly can? Let’s consider how to inform your boss about your need for treatment while causing the least damage to your career.

Most Human Resources (H.R.) departments have a well-defined process for dealing with employee issues like drug abuse and addiction. This is a well-trodden path that clears the way for the employee to obtain needed treatment.

Some companies have a team dedicated to assisting employees with substance use issues to get treatment. The H.R. office must remain discreet and honor the employee’s wishes regarding whether the immediate manager is told. Many times, the employee will opt to confide in their manager about their need for treatment.

Laws that Protect Your Job While in Rehab

Worries about how you’ll be judged if it’s discovered you’ve enrolled in rehab are usually unwarranted. There are laws in place to ensure that an employee is not fired because they are receiving addiction treatment. If the employee confides in their boss about the need for rehab, they should not worry about discrimination or repercussions.

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

The ADA offers limited protections against discriminatory practices toward employees with substance use disorders. Employees with a history of addiction, or who are currently in treatment, are protected under the ADA.

Because alcoholism is considered a disability, alcoholics are protected under the ADA.  Even so, employers have a right to enforce policies that forbid drinking alcohol in the workplace. Also, an employee who is an alcoholic will be held to the same work-related standards as other employees.

The ADA does not consider someone who is active in their addiction while employed to be an “individual with a disability.” Employers have the right to prohibit the use of substances in the workplace, and can legally test employees. A positive test is grounds for termination.

Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)

Under the FMLA, those who require addiction treatment and who need treatment are permitted to take an extended leave of absence. They can be granted up to 12 weeks of paid or unpaid leave without the risk of losing their job. This means that after the 12-week leave, the former position, or a comparable one, is guaranteed.

Treatment Options for a Substance Use Disorder

Rehab involves leaving work for an extended period to engage in a multi-modal program of treatment elements. These elements help you learn how to live life without the substance.

When you receive your leave of absence for rehab, this is what you can expect when you enter treatment:

  • Detox and withdrawal. Detox takes place in a closely monitored setting and lasts one-two week on average. As withdrawal symptoms emerge, various interventions are provided to reduce discomfort.
  • Therapy. You will engage in multiple therapy formats to bring about needed changes. These include individual therapy, group therapy, and family therapy. Evidence-based psychotherapies may include CBT and DBT.
  • Education. While in rehab, you will learn coping skills and stress reducing techniques to help you avert relapse.
  • 12-Step. Many rehab programs include the 12-Step program from A.A. or an alternative like SMART Recovery. These are introduced in treatment so you can then pursue finding a local group in recovery.
  • Holistic methods. The mind-body connection is an important one to attend to in recovery. Learn how to do this with activities like yoga, meditation, Tai Chi, and massage.

Taking a leave of absence for rehab is one of the best things you can do for your health and your future.

Rehabs Malibu Premier Residential Treatment for Alcohol Use Disorder

Rehabs Malibu offers the most effective treatment methods for AUD in a 5-star setting. This exclusive private estate provides the finest rehab experience possible and is headed up by doctors. For more details about the program, please reach out today at (424) 425-3541.

private rehab for doctors

Becoming a doctor is often referred to as a calling. The road to earning that “M.D.” after your name requires years and years of study and training. Few other career choices demand the level of sacrifice and dedication it takes to become a doctor.

But along with the nice salary and prestige comes a great deal of stress. People from all walks of life and careers may use a substance as a way of reducing jobs, and this includes doctors. When a physician develops a substance use disorder, they’ll find the help they need at a private rehab for doctors.

Doctors that Struggle with Substance Abuse or Addiction

In general, doctors struggle with substance misuse at about the same rate as the general public. However, when it comes to opioid abuse (prescription painkillers), doctors have a significantly higher rate than the public.

Lisa Merlo, Ph.D. published her research about this problem in the Journal of Addiction Medicine. She found that out of the 55 physicians studied with substance use disorders, 60% misused opioids. Another report states that in excess of 100,000 doctors, nurses, and other medical experts have substance use disorders, mostly opioids.

Certain doctors have higher rates of substance abuse. These tend to be those in high-stress specialties, with emergency room doctors having the highest stress levels.

Why Do Doctors Become Addicted?

One of the main reasons doctors have high rates of opioid misuse is simply having access to the drugs. Eighty-four percent of doctors practice self-prescribing, where a doctor prescribes drugs for him or herself. Many doctors admit to beginning their substance abuse after obtaining their self-prescribing privileges.

Some data suggest that medical workers are more prone to using a substance to self-medicate than many other professions. Not only do they need to manage stress, but may also look for a way to handle the emotional toll. According to Lisa Merlo’s research, the following factors were cited as reasons for doctors self-medicating:

  • Pain. Doctors are like other patients who may develop an addiction to prescription pain meds after surgery or injury.
  • Stress. Doctors begin to rely on substances to ease work and life stressors.
  • Mental health issues. Doctors who struggle with anxiety and/or depression are more prone to self-medicating using available drugs.
  • Effects of the job. Doctors may struggle with trauma, exhaustion, and sleep deprivation due to the demands of the job, leading them to self-prescribe.

Risks Posed by Doctors with Substance Use Disorder

The misuse of substances by doctors is fairly prevalent. This indicates that patients may be placed under the care of a doctor that’s under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Because doctors perform surgeries and dispense meds, a doctor with a substance use problem can potentially endanger a patient’s life.

Some of the signs that a doctor is engaging in substance abuse are:

  • Patient and staff complaints about behaviors.
  • Excess absences from work.
  • Taking long breaks during a shift.
  • Shows up to work on days off to access the dispensary.
  • Forgets deadlines or appointments.
  • Insists in administering injected drugs to patients.
  • Drug shortages in the department.
  • Worsening writing, record keeping, and charting skills.
  • Mood swings.
  • Lack of impulse control.
  • Spending much time in the area of the drug supply.
  • A decline in hygiene.
  • The trouble with memory, and mental confusion.
  • Hand tremors.
  • Excessive sweating.

Sometimes a doctor or nurse may divert the drugs from the patient, and use the drug for themselves. Patients are not aware of what the doctor has prescribed for them and are at the mercy of the nurse or doctor to receive the correct dose. In this event, the patient can suffer needless pain and discomfort as a result of not receiving the complete dosage.

A surgeon who is on drugs may injure a patient or end up giving them the wrong meds or dosage. These errors point to the need for the physician to secure treatment. Enrolling in a private rehab for doctors provides the guidance and support needed to break the grip of addiction.

Signs of an Opioid Use Disorder

Doctors have easy access to opioids, stimulants, and sedatives. This access may overwhelm them, even more so if they are dealing with fatigue or pain. In the long run, this can result in addiction.

The most commonly abused drugs by doctors are in the opioid class of drugs. Signs of opioid use disorder include:

  • Extreme drowsiness or nodding out.
  • Pinpoint pupils.
  • Chronic constipation.
  • Muscle pain.
  • Headaches
  • Blurred vision.
  • Skin rash.
  • Slowed breathing rate.
  • Ringing in the ears.
  • Nausea
  • Itchy skin.
  • Being obsessed with getting the drug.
  • Self-prescribing high quantities of opioid pills.
  • Stealing pain pills from a dispensary.
  • Increased tolerance.
  • Isolating behaviors.
  • Depression
  • Mood swings.
  • Anxiety
  • Mental confusion.
  • Irrational fear.

If you are a doctor and notice these symptoms in yourself, you should not delay in seeking out treatment. The sooner you address the substance problem and get help, the better the outcome.

What to Expect at a Private Rehab for Doctors

When a doctor (or nurse) is struggling with substance use, they will benefit from a multi-dimensional treatment approach. A comprehensive treatment program includes a wide range of interventions, such as:

  • Medical detox. During detox, the remaining substance is purged from the body. Trained detox experts provide medical support to reduce the symptoms of withdrawal. For prescription pill detox, a tapering plan will be started to slowly ease the person off the drug.
  • Individual therapy. Using evidence-based therapies, like CBT and DBT, the doctor will learn how to change behavior patterns.
  • Group therapy. Small group therapy sessions encourage peer support through the sharing of personal experiences, feelings, and challenges.
  • Family therapy. Family-focused counseling provides family members with a chance to begin healing and to move forward in a positive manner.
  • Education. The doctor will learn about how the addiction process works and how drugs impact the brain.
  • Treatment for a mental health disorder. If the doctor also has a mental health issue, they will need a dual diagnosis treatment program. These are specialized programs that treat both the substance use disorder and the co-occurring mental health disorder.
  • Adjunctive. Treatment is enhanced with holistic activities like yoga, massage, mindfulness, and art therapy.

Rehabs Malibu Residential Private Rehab for Doctors

Rehabs Malibu provides premier addiction treatment services for doctors that struggle with substance use disorder. For more details about our luxury program, please reach out to us today at (424) 425-3541.

5 star rehab

You’ve made the decision to address your substance use disorder, and now you are on the hunt for a rehab. As you begin the search for treatment, you find yourself faced with endless choices, which can make you feel overwhelmed. Out of all these choices, you’re hoping to locate a 5-star rehab that is perfect for your needs. Once you do find it, what can you expect at a 5-star rehab?

What is Luxury Rehab?

There are many types of addiction treatment programs, ranging from standard care to top-of-the-line luxury programs. Luxury rehabs are high-end programs that go above and beyond to provide the best treatment experience possible. These resort-style programs feature premium amenities and are typically located in a breathtaking setting.

As with any quality rehab, a luxury program places the focus squarely on the treatment elements. These are the therapies and classes that can help you break the grip of addiction. These programs differ from average rehabs because they cater to people who are used to the finer things in life. Thus, the furnishings, meals, and services are top-notch.

What Are the Benefits of a 5-Star Treatment Program?

You may have unsuccessfully attempted rehab in the past; perhaps you’d enrolled in a lower cost standard treatment program. Maybe it was because you didn’t like sharing a room, or maybe the food was substandard, but you never finished. The staff may have lacked expertise, or maybe the rehab was disorganized, messy, or poorly managed. Any of these reasons may have caused you to leave the rehab and return to substance use.

This time as enter treatment, you know what you need and you also know what doesn’t work for you. You want to feel comfortable during your stay there, and you need to be assured your privacy is protected.

The luxury treatment setting provides the following benefits:

  • Upscale accommodations. 5-star rehabs are often located at a beautiful private residences. The limited bed capacity of residential treatment centers allows the staff to offer more personalized attention to clients. You can expect both the home and its furnishings to be high-end.
  • Stunning scenery. Nature has a soothing effect on us anyway, but when you are recovering from addiction, the gorgeous settings enhance healing.
  • Confidentiality. Small, private luxury rehabs prioritize confidentiality. You can rest assured that your privacy concerns are honored.
  • Expert treatment staff. Master’s level licensed therapists and addiction specialists are fully trained in the most effective treatment methods.
  • Spa-like services. Many clients choose a 5-star rehab for its resort-like amenities. These might include an infrared sauna, pool and spa, massage, acupuncture, and yoga classes.
  • Recreation. Luxury rehabs include outdoor activities, such as hiking, water sports, and cycling, as well as having a gym on-site.
  • Gourmet meals. Nutrition is emphasized at the premier rehabs. An on-site chef provides gourmet meal plans.

Features to Seek at 5-Star Rehabs

How do you discern which rehabs are at a 5-star level? Here are some of the key features to look for when researching luxury treatment programs:

  • Licensed and accredited. Make sure the treatment center is current on its state and local licenses. Also, it should be CARF and/or Joint Commission accredited. These agencies help ensure patients that the rehab adheres to industry standards, which protects patient safety.
  • Expertise. The rehab should be staffed with a team of licensed therapists and addiction professionals. If it offers dual diagnosis treatment, it should also have a psychiatrist on staff.
  • Evidence-based treatment. The rehab should utilize evidence-based psychotherapies. These are addiction treatment methods that have been studied and are shown to be effective for this purpose. Ask if the rehab also provides treatment for co-occurring mental health issues.
  • Clean and orderly. The residence should be well-maintained, clean, organized, and well-managed. The rehab’s ambiance should be calm, respectful, and positive.
  • On-site medical detox. The treatment center should provide on-site medically monitored detox services.
  • Customized treatment plans. The rehab should conduct a thorough intake assessment. From the information gathered during the intake, it should offer a custom treatment plan and case management.
  • Privacy. Ask the rehab about their privacy policies, and ask what protections are in place.

What to Expect at a 5-Star Rehab

The beauty of a premier rehab is the personalized treatment you receive. As you begin your journey toward healing, you will feel you are in good hands. Every effort will be made to ensure your comfort, starting with detox and through the entire program.

Here is what to expect during your stay in treatment:

Detox: The detox and withdrawal process takes a week or two to complete. The withdrawal symptoms range from mild to severe, which is determined by the type of substance and the addiction duration. Medications and mental health support are provided to help ease the effects of detox.

Psychotherapy. Using evidence-based therapies like CBT or DBT, you are guided toward making constructive changes in thoughts and behaviors. Therapy teaches you new healthy ways to respond to stressors or triggers. In these one-on-one sessions, you are free to discuss any mental health concerns you have.

Group therapy: Meeting in small groups can provide an outlet for peers in treatment to get to know each other. Group sessions are all about sharing and learning from each other, and from the clinician who leads the group.

Education. Classes provide clients with helpful information about the brain science of addiction. You will also learn new coping skills to help you avoid a relapse.

Complementary activities. To enhance the effects of therapy, clients engage in art therapy, equine therapy, meditation, and journaling.

Aftercare. Aftercare actions help sustain sobriety after you complete the rehab program. These may include sober living, alumni events, outpatient therapy, and 12-step meetings.

Rehabs Malibu 5-Star Rehab

Rehabs Malibu is a luxury rehab that offers the highest level of care available. Relax in the comfort of a beautiful home setting as you begin your journey to wellness in style. To learn more about our program, please call us today at (424) 425-3541.

how long do opiates stay in your system

Opiates are fast-acting drugs that are derived from the opium poppy plant. Opiates include licit pain relievers, like codeine and morphine, as well as illicit substances like opium and heroin. Some may wonder how long opiates stay in your system.

Opiates are now wrapped into the opioid category, which includes synthetic analgesics. These include oxycodone, hydrocodone, oxymorphone, and others. Synthetic opioids are simply lab-engineered drugs that mimic the effects of natural opiates.

There are several reasons why someone might want to know how long do opiates or opioids stay in the system. These include:

  • Learning when it is safe to drive or operate machinery.
  • If they can safely take another medication that could interact with the opiate.
  • To avoid a positive drug test.

Factors that Affect How Long Opiates Stay in the System

There are several factors that influence how long opiates will be present in the system. The speed at which the body metabolizes and expels the substance depends on:

  • Which opiate or opioid was used.
  • The size of the dose.
  • Method of drug delivery.
  • Body fat
  • Age
  • Hydration level.
  • Genetics
  • Liver and kidney functioning.
  • Metabolic rate.

How Long Do Opiates and Opioids Stay in Your System?

The range of time that an opiate can be detected in the system ranges from hours to weeks. Consider these drug screening timelines:

Heroin: In urine for seven days, in blood for six hours, in hair for 90 days, and saliva for five hours.

Morphine: In urine for three days, in blood for 12 hours, in hair for 90 days, and in saliva for four days.

Codeine: In urine for 1-2 days, in blood for one day, in hair for 90 days, and saliva for four days.

Heroin: In urine for seven days, blood for six hours, hair for 90 days, and saliva for five hours.

Oxycodone: In urine for one day, in blood for one day, in hair for 90 days, and in saliva for two days.

Hydrocodone: In urine for three days, in blood for 12 hours, in hair for 90 days, and in saliva for 12-36 hours.

Methadone: In urine for two weeks, in blood for three days, in hair for 90 days, and in saliva for two days.

Fentanyl: In urine for one day, in blood for 12 hours, in hair for 90 days, and in saliva for four days.

How Do Drug Tests Work?

Today’s drug tests are available for testing blood samples, urine samples, saliva samples, or hair samples. Each of these tests registers the drug using different mechanisms, which influence how long the opiates will show up.

Drug screening tests are used for many reasons. These include:

  • As a condition for employment.
  • Condition of parole or other legal reasons.
  • To participate in sports.
  • As a continuing care tool in addiction recovery.

The different drug tests include:

  • Urine testing. Urine tests are the most often used drug screening test. A urine test can detect drugs in the system for a number of days, from a few days to weeks. How long prior to the urine test depends on the frequency of drug use and the type of drug.
  • Saliva testing. Using a mouth swab, the saliva test can detect very recent drug use, such as within a few hours.
  • Hair testing. Where other drug tests only reveal use within the previous days or weeks, hair screening detects a three-month period. Because hair screenings are more sensitive than other methods, they can reveal a person’s historical drug use.
  • Blood testing. Blood screening tests require a blood draw. The blood test is called the enzyme-multiple immunoassay test and is able to pick up a range of substances.

Detox: The First Step in Breaking Free from Opiate Addiction

When you are ready to embark on the recovery journey, the starting place is detox and withdrawal. This is a necessary first step, allowing the body to clear the remnants of the opiate and stabilize the mind. Detox is a prerequisite to entering treatment.

Withdrawal symptoms will vary in severity and scope depending on the opiate use history use and the level of dosing each day. The team of detox experts in charge of overseeing the process will closely monitor your vital signs and withdrawal symptoms. This allows them to provide medications to help reduce the discomfort and also offer emotional support.

Withdrawal symptoms may include:

  • Abdominal pain.
  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • Diarrhea
  • Sweating
  • Nodding out.
  • Chills; fever.
  • Muscle and joint pain.
  • Shakiness
  • Insomnia
  • Restless, nervous, or jumpy.
  • Agitation
  • Depression
  • Drug cravings.
  • Seizures

Getting Help for an Opiate Addiction

After detox, you will enter a structured treatment program that can help you overcome the compulsion to use opiates. This involves evidence-based interventions that guide you toward new ways of thinking and reacting. These include:

  • Psychotherapy. Therapy sessions, offered in both one-on-one and group formats, assist you in working through emotional issues. These include any past traumas or current life struggles that might be fueling drug use.
  • Addiction classes. Learning how brain chemistry responds to opiates can help you grasp why it is so hard to overcome addiction.
  • Relapse avoidance planning. An important part of rehab is to plan for the triggers that can challenge abstinence and lead to relapse.
  • Life skills classes. Life skills are taught to help you get back on track. These classes may assist in resume preparation, interviewing tips, and general job search planning.
  • 12-step groups. The A.A. blueprint for recovery helps you make steady progress in your recovery journey. The 12-step group meetings foster peer-based support and mentoring.

If you are asking, “How long do opiates stay in your system,” you may have an opiate use disorder. Do not hesitate to reach out for help.

Rehabs Malibu Provides Evidence-Based Addiction Treatment

Rehabs Malibu is a trusted provider of luxury addiction recovery services. If you or a loved one is struggling with an opiate or opioid use disorder, we can help. Call us today to get your questions answered at (424) 425-3541.

Inhalant abuse

Whip Its, huffing, dusting. These are just some of the terms used to refer to the practice of inhalant abuse. So, what is inhalant abuse exactly?

What Are Inhalants?

The term, “inhalants” refers to a broad range of products that can produce chemical vapors or fumes. When inhaled, these items produce mind-altering effects. The person inhales the fumes or gases in hopes of experiencing a rush or high. Effects include euphoria, relaxation, lightheadedness, hallucinations, feeling uninhibited, and a sense of calm.

Because the fumes from these products go straight from the capillaries in the lungs right into the bloodstream, the effects come on quickly but last only a few minutes.  Because the high is short-acting, the person often repeats the huffing action multiple times to create a long-lasting high.

Types of Inhalant Abuse

It is mostly teens and young adults who are more prone to high-risk, thrill-seeking behaviors that are drawn to inhalant abuse. TikTok and YouTube videos fuel the curiosity of young people who might be looking for a dare. In fact, about two-thirds of those who engage in inhalant abuse are under the age of eighteen.

Inhalants are also referred to as hippie crack, laughing gas, ballooning, noz, and chargers. These products are often used to achieve a high in social settings like raves, dance clubs, rock concerts, and parties. Often, these young people are not informed about the dangers that huffing can cause to their health and wellbeing.

The products used for inhalant abuse are household products that are widely accessible to young people seeking a high. There are four main categories of inhalants. These include:

  • Nitrous oxide: Propane tanks, Freon, whipped cream canisters, butane lighters, chloroform, nitrous oxide, and ether.
  • Aerosols: Spray paint, vegetable oil spray, hair spray, spray deodorant, and aerosolized computer cleaning products
  • Volatile solvents: Paint thinners, gasoline, glues, degreasers, dry-cleaning fluids, lighter fluid, and felt-tip markers.
  • Nitrites: Amyl nitrite, butyl nitrite, room deodorizer, leather cleaner, liquid aroma, and video head cleaner.

Methods used for inhaling these products include:

  • Inhaling the gas with a bag over the head is referred to as bagging.
  • Poking a hole in a whipped cream canister and sucking the gas out of it.
  • Sucking gas from a balloon.
  • Inhaling the vapors directly through the nose.
  • Apply the chemical, such as Freon, to a rag and inhale the vapors.

Signs of Inhalant Abuse

Keep an eye out for certain signs that a teen or young adult may be abusing inhalants. These warning signs include:

  • Finding rags soaked in chemicals.
  • Dazed appearance.
  • Mood swings.
  • Secretive behavior.
  • Finding empty cans of inhalants around the house or in their car.
  • Bloodshot eyes.
  • High-risk behaviors.
  • Avoiding friends and family.
  • Hanging out with a new group.
  • You notice that aerosol household products running out faster than usual.
  • Hoarse voice.
  • Chemical odor on clothing.
  • Difficulty concentrating.
  • Clumsy, staggering.
  • Declining academic performance.
  • Change in hygiene habits.

If parents notice these signs in their teen or young adult, it is best to get them into treatment sooner rather than later. Abuse of inhalants can be deadly.

Dangers of Inhalant Abuse

Inhalant abuse can cause a spectrum of ill effects. The type of inhalant used will determine the side effects. Some of these include:

  • Respiratory problems.
  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • Disorientation
  • Chest pain
  • Drowsiness
  • Lightheadedness.
  • Loss of coordination.
  • Increased heart rate.
  • Headache
  • Garbled or slurred speech.
  • Tremors
  • Burning of the esophagus.
  • Bloody stool.
  • Impulsive and risky behaviors result in injury.
  • Limb spasms.
  • Heart damage.
  • Vitamin B-12 deficiency.

When a person becomes addicted to dusting or hugging, they can experience serious health effects.  Long-term effects of huffing include:

  • Permanent brain damage.
  • Lung damage.
  • Irreversible neurological damage.
  • Kidney or liver damage.
  • Bone marrow damage.
  • Permanent hearing loss.
  • Damage to the central nervous system, impacting motor, sensory, and cognitive functions.
  • Seizures

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, between 100-200 people die each year from inhalant abuse. Even huffing at just one time can be lethal; it is something called sudden sniffing death. This happens when hugging causes a heart attack or hypoxia.

Treatment for Inhalant Abuse and Addiction

Huffing is not just some silly teenage practice. People of all ages have engaged in inhalant abuse. Actress Demi Moore was hospitalized at age fifty from inhaling the nitrous oxide chargers. The late singer Aaron Carter admitted to inhalant addiction until he was thirty. Drake Bell of Nickelodeon fame was caught ballooning at age thirty-six.

Inhalant abuse is very high-risk and can cause sudden death. If you have a loved one that is engaging in this risky practice, there is help available. A residential treatment program offers a chance to break the habit of inhalant abuse and start fresh in recovery.

Treatment involves various therapies that assist the person in gaining control back over their life. These include:

  • Group therapy. Small group therapy sessions allow members to share their personal struggles and discuss new recovery goals.
  • One-on-one therapy. Individual sessions provide a safe place to open up and share any mental health struggles that might be present. Therapists use CBT and DBT to guide the person to change dysfunctional behaviors that led to huffing.
  • Recovery meetings. Some rehabs include A.A. meetings and the 12-step program to help guide the recovery process.
  • Education. There are classes that teach clients about how addiction forms in the brain, and ways to avoid a relapse.
  • Holistic. With stress being a trigger for relapse, rehabs include holistic methods in the program. Yoga and meditation are techniques the person can use throughout recovery.

You may be a parent wondering, “What is inhalant abuse?” If so, you may be alarmed to realize that your son or daughter might be engaging in inhalant abuse. Do not hesitate to get them help for this dangerous practice.

Rehabs Malibu Leading Addiction Treatment Center

Rehabs Malibu is a premier addiction recovery program that offers support and treatment for inhalant abuse and addiction. If you suspect a loved one is abusing these products, give us a call today at (424) 425-3541.