Alcohol Detox at Home

Alcohol is one of the most common addictions in the world. If you or somebody you love has an addiction to alcohol, you’re not alone. The National Institutes of Health states that in 2017, over 26% percent of people over the age of eighteen admitted to binge drinking within the last month, while almost 7% of drinkers of the same ages admitted to “heavy alcohol use” within the past month of the survey. Alcohol is a problem for many people, but few seek recovery and often those who do have to try quitting multiple times before they are able to achieve lasting sobriety. Because of the stigma attached to alcohol, many people seek out more information on alcohol detox from home. But how can you do it safely? Alcohol is Highly Addictive Alcohol is a highly addictive substance. While many people assume alcohol is pretty safe because it’s sold almost everywhere, this is simply not the case. Alcohol changes the way the body reacts and the way the brain…

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Sesame Street Adds Character With Addicted Mom

Addiction is slowing coming out of the woodwork as a stigma that people don’t talk about. In the past few years, it’s no secret that there has been an opioid addiction epidemic. It affects millions of people. More than 70,200 Americans died from drug overdoses in 2017, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. And for all those that don’t die, there are hundreds of thousands still struggling to get and stay clean. All of these people are somebody’s daughter or son. And many of them have children, which is why Sesame Street is tackling such a sobering subject for young people. The Addiction Crisis There is a young generation that is growing up without parents or in the custody of other relatives due to this epidemic, similar to the crack epidemic of the 1990’s. Many addicted people end up involved in the justice system, bouncing from treatment-to-treatment, or lost in their addiction bouncing from couch to couch. Many children are too young to understand their parent’s addiction…

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Vaping is Destroying Lungs, Cause Still Under Investigation

Most people know that tobacco and nicotine kill, but many minors don't the warning, especially when it comes to vaping. After all, when a person smokes cigarettes, it usually takes several years to affect the lungs. Vaping, however, has been causing the rapid deterioration of lungs and the FDA still isn’t positive how and why this has happened. Vaping is a Crisis Among Young Vaping has rapidly become an addiction that is prevalent among youth. Described as an “epidemic” by former FDA chief Scoot Gottlieb, the amount of young people who vape electronic cigarettes has risen dramatically in the past few years. According to the National Institutes of Health: “More than 44,000 students took part in the 2018 annual survey of drug, alcohol, and cigarette use in 8th, 10th, and 12th graders. About 37% of 12th graders reported vaping in 2018, compared with 28% in 2017. Vaping of each substance that was asked about increased. This includes nicotine, flavored liquids, marijuana, and hash oil.” Over 400 Vapers Have Now…

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JUUL CEO Apologizes to Parents of Vaping Teens

JUUL Lans CEO Kevin Burns will apologize to parents of teens addicted to nicotine, but seems to dismiss responsibility. In a documentary on CNBC, set to air tonight,  Juul Labs CEO Kevin Burns speaks about the recent teen vaping epidemic.  A new documentary, “Vaporized: America’s E-cigarette Addiction,” will air tonight. When Carlos Quintanilla, the reporter for the movie, toured one of Juul’s manufacturing facilities in Wisconsin with Burns. While there, the CEO was asked what he would say to a parent with a child who was addicted to Juul. “First of all, I’d tell them that I’m sorry that their child’s using the product,” said Burns. “It’s not intended for them. I hope there was nothing that we did that made it appealing to them. As a parent of a 16-year-old, I’m sorry for them, and I have empathy for them, in terms of what the challenges they’re going through.” In 2017, the number of teens who had vaped grew to two million. Activists againse vaping say that the…

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Scientists Explore Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) to Fight Addiction

Addiction is costly in many ways. It can cost relationships, families, jobs, and lives. The stigma of addiction can cause people not to seek help, and it seems that the stigma is international, just like the disease of addiction itself. China has been experimenting with different solutions for addiction for years. People often go to the research doctors out of desperation. A recent article by the Associated Press detailed the desperation a man named Yan, in China, felt when over the years he became addicted to crystal meth and, eventually, heroin. His father wanted to help but was tired of watching him bounce in and out of drug rehabilitation. He gave him a choice between another trip to drug rehabilitation, or to try Deep Brain Stimulation surgery. “Of course, I chose surgery,” Yan said. “With surgery, I definitely have the chance to get my life back.” China’s Research into DBS for Addiction China doesn’t have the same medical laws as America, and for many years they tried an archaic…

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Cocaine-Opioid Cocktails Have Been Killing Since 2010

People have been dying from opioid and cocaine cocktails regularly since 2010, but there hasn’t been much reporting on it. That’s partially because the focus is on the fact that these deaths were from opioids. But calling these deaths “opioid overdoses” is problematic because, in some cases, the drug users were never aware that they were using an opioid. According to the Washington Examiner, more than 10,100 people died from mixing the drugs in 2017. 7,241 of those deaths showed both cocaine and fentanyl in their systems. Fentanyl is a potent opioid about 50 to 200 times stronger than morphine. It’s also the deadliest opioid in the US, with the majority of deaths in 2017. Deaths caused by opioids and cocaine have risen nearly 76 percent since 2012. Recently, opioid test strips have emerged across the United States as a part of harm-reduction efforts. The strips, which cost $1 each and have been given out with needle exchange programs and at other places drug users frequent, can detect even…

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Grant Awarded to Create, Upgrade Much-Needed Sober Housing in Mass.

In Massachusetts, in some ways, they are catching up to the opioid epidemic and facing it head-on. This sometimes means sending addicted patients home with medication-assisted treatment, offering sober coaching programs, and even providing drop-in clinics in some cities where drug addiction therapy is scarce. Now, The Center for Community Recovery Innovations (CCRI) has awarded a total of $696,995 in grant funding to help house recovery populations that include men, women, families, veterans, the homeless and ex-offenders. The money will go to creating and modernizing 118 affordable sober housing units in communities across Massachusetts. The grants come from the Center for Community Recovery Innovations, Inc. (CCRI), a nonprofit subsidiary of MassHousing. The goal of the award is to help nonprofits create or preserve affordable sober housing in Massachusetts. This is not the first grant that has been awarded to support substance-free housing. Total, CCRI has awarded more than $10 million in grants. Without these grants, there would be few options for recovery housing, which is often considered the best…

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Horizon BCBC Offers NJ Members Free Peer Recovery Counselors

In New Jersey, Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield is offering their clients a new secret weapon as they begin their recovery journey. Peer recovery counselors, trained to help others who are trying to get clean, will be offered to anyone who is currently receiving treatment for a substance use disorder. The counselors will be available 24/7 via telehealth sessions. The sessions will take place over live video chat, which is how they can be offered any time, day or night. Horizon told the media that about 1.35 million of the 3 million members they currently have would be eligible for the program. Nearly seven out of a hundred thousand people in their network end up seeking help for a substance use disorder. Why Peer Recovery Counselors? Allen Karp, Horizon's executive vice president, says that peer-support programs “dramatically improves a person’s chances of achieving long-term success.” People in treatment or counseling, who have begun treatment and are considered “stable” will be eligible for extra help.  The first few months are a critical…

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How Will the Opioids Crisis Response Act Fight Addiction?

Much to the excitement of addiction recovery advocates and after a time stalled in Congress, lawmakers are finally close to passing a hefty bill to combat opioid abuse. The measure would combine law enforcement and public health measures, and includes initiatives and funding to help make addiction recovery services more accessible to people with opioid use disorder. If passed, the law will be the most comprehensive action to date to deal with the opioid epidemic. The bill is a rare bipartisan effort in a time where many initiatives have stalled entirely due to the deep political divides in both the House and the Senate. The bill itself stalled in the House of Representatives earlier because Democrats objected to a part of the law that would benefit a group tied to the pharmaceutical industry that helped create the epidemic of addiction that our country faces today. Finally, a compromise was reached in the Senate this week removing the provision, and the bill was modified to focus on a variety of…

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Fentanyl-Cocaine Combo Causing Deaths in MD

In Maryland, the government has been doing its best to fight the addiction crisis, but they’re not yet winning: in 2017, the number of fatal overdoses increased 9%. Most of these overdoses (90%) were considered to be opioid-induced, with Fentanyl overdoses increased by 42 percent last year, rising from 1,119 in 2016 to 1,594. Fentanyl is a drug that is 50 times stronger than heroin and is typically used in a medical setting. When added to other street drugs, it can be deadly, especially if novice opioid users are taking the drug. In Maryland, they have discovered that a fentanyl-cocaine combination of drugs is causing deaths. Between 2015 and 2016, cocaine deaths doubled because of this lethal combination. The Maryland Department of Health Secretary Rober R. Neall called the increase in fentanyl-related deaths “staggering.” Officials think that the overdose deaths of cocaine containing fentanyl were accidental; the user may have had no clue that the two drugs were combined. Over 71% of cocaine deaths in 2017 was due to…

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