Marijuana & Alcohol- Legal but Linked to Violence

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Marijuana & Alcohol- Legal but Linked to Violence

28 July, 2021Articles, News

As legalisation spreads, more Americans and South Africans are becoming heavy users of marijuana, despite its links to violence and mental illness. The best data concerning the scope and effects of marijuana & alcohol use comes from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH).

The survey asks about problems users believe they have encountered because of their use. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) consolidates the answers to estimate how many would meet the clinical criteria for dependence (2.8 million) or abuse (an additional 1.4 million) set down by the Diagnostical and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (commonly referred to as the DSM-V). SAMHSA makes these calculations for all substances in an effort to estimate the nationwide need for treatment for each substance.

137 million people self-reported current alcohol use,of which 17.3 million described enough problems to meet the criteria for alcohol abuse or dependence, equivalent to one instance of alcohol abuse or dependence per 7.9 current users, or 13% of current users — significantly lower than the corresponding ratio for marijuana.

In 2012 the Treatment Episode Data Set recorded 681,374 treatment admissions for which the primary substance of abuse was alcohol and 305,560 for which it was marijuana or hashish. That works out to 15 admissions for every 1,000 current marijuana users versus only 5 for every 1,000 alcohol users.

What is clear is that, in individual cases, marijuana can cause psychosis, and psychosis is a high risk factor for violence. What’s more, much of that violence occurs when psychotic people are using drugs or alcohol. The drug they are most likely to use is marijuana. The most obvious way that it fuels violence in psychotic people- is through its ability to cause paranoia. In people with psychiatric disorders, paranoia can fuel violence.

A 2012 paper in the Journal of Interpersonal Violence, examining a federal survey of more than 9,000 adolescents, found that marijuana use was associated with a doubling of domestic violence in the U.S.A.. A 2017 paper in the journal Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology, examining drivers of violence among 6,000 British and Chinese men, found that drug use was linked to a 5-fold increase in violence, and the drug used was nearly always cannabis.

If you or a loved one needs assistance with substance abuse or alcoholism – know that help is readily available. The road to recovery is not always an easy one but getting yourself or your loved one the best possible care from the team at Crossroads Recovery Centre, provides you with a map to sober, healthy living. No matter how bad things seem, there is hope and it is only a phone call away. If you or anyone close to you needs help with an addiction to sex, gambling, substances, alcohol or food, please contact us for a free assessment

www.crossroadsrecovery.co.za

074 89 51043 JHB

012 450 5033 PTA

RESOURCES

https://www.wsj.com/articles/marijuana-is-more-dangerous-than-you-think-11546527075

https://www.nationalaffairs.com/publications/detail/the-real-dangers-of-marijuana

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  • The encouragement, love and support from the team at Crossroads allowed me to eventually see that I was worth something - that my life could be turned around and that I could accomplish the things that had long been a forgotten dream.
    Oliver VG
    Read more
  • On the last day of my stint at Crossroads I could only express gratitude towards all who works there. A wise councillor once commented on my question when one is ready for rehab by explaining that when one is ready for rehab, rehab is ready for you.
    Johan B
    Read more
  • I was lost and my soul was broken until I ended up at Crossroads and was introduced to the Twelve Steps. With the help of their excellent staff and amazing support I have recently been clean for 18 months, I could not have done it without them!
    Carla S
    Read more
  • "Just for today I am more than three years in recovery. I have Cross Roads to thank for this wonderful gift. Cross Roads helped me to set a firm foundation in my recovery on which I can continue to build."
    Angelique J
    Read more
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Alcohol Rehab: When do you know it is time?

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Alcohol Rehab: When do you know it is time?

14 July, 2021Articles, News

It is common to have questions or concerns when considering whether you or someone you love may have a drinking problem. When do you have to admit to yourself that you or someone you know may need help and it is time to go to an alcohol rehab ? Gaining a better understanding of both the physical and psychological signs of alcoholism, may help address many of your concerns. Alcohol use disorder (AUD) is a medical condition characterized by the inability to stop or control alcohol use despite the negative consequences. AUD is a chronic brain disorder that can progress over time if left untreated.
It can be difficult to recognise when casual drinking has crossed the line into abuse or addiction. It can be even harder to decide that it is time to do something about it. If you think you or someone you love may have an AUD, this guide will help you learn some signs to identify a possible AUD and help you to remain informed about what types of treatment are available for people with an AUD.

Signs of Alcoholism & Signs for the need of Alcohol Rehab Treatment:
Here are some characteristic signs and symptoms to be aware of when considering whether alcohol use may be problematic:

  1. You have health problems caused by alcohol abuse
    Alcohol abuse can significantly impact a person’s physical health or worsen symptoms of mental health conditions. There are several conditions that can be directly caused by chronic heavy drinking, including liver damage, heart damage, anaemia, various types of cancers, and brain and nervous system problems.
    Alcohol abuse can also cause mental health disorders such as depression, anxiety, and dementia. If you are experiencing health problems as a direct result of alcohol abuse, it may be time to consider treatment.
  2. You experience alcohol withdrawal symptoms – when not drinking
    Experiencing symptoms of withdrawal, when not drinking, is a significant sign that you may be physically dependent on alcohol. Common withdrawal symptoms include nausea, shaky hands, vomiting, headache, insomnia, and sweating.
    People who are severely addicted to alcohol may experience more dangerous symptoms, including delirium tremens (DTs). Symptoms DTs include fever, confusion, high blood pressure, and heavy sweating. If you believe you are experiencing DTs, it’s important to seek medical help immediately, as this condition can be fatal.
  3. You have injured yourself or others while intoxicated
    Alcohol can lower inhibitions and make people more likely to participate in dangerous activities like drunk driving. This is especially true for individuals who drink heavily or who cannot control their alcohol intake. The more alcohol a person consumes, the more likely he or she is to get injured or injure others.
    Multiple DUIs, injuries, or participating in other potentially dangerous situations may be a sign that you could benefit from alcohol rehab.
  4. Your work or school performance has suffered as a result of your drinking
    People who can control their drinking typically don’t experience issues with work, school, or other responsibilities as a result of alcohol consumption. However, individuals who have trouble controlling their drinking or who regularly abuse alcohol often find themselves calling in sick to work, missing school, or performing poorly. A person may even lose his or her job or get kicked out of school as a result of drinking.
  5. You regularly lie about or hide your alcohol consumption
    Hiding or lying about one’s alcohol consumption is often a key indicator that the individual is struggling with alcohol abuse. A person may drink in private or consume alcohol before meeting up with friends. Individuals with an alcohol use disorder may also lie about how much alcohol they drink or even avoid social situations where their drinking will be noticeable.
    If you find yourself lying about how much alcohol you drink or hiding your alcohol consumption, this may be an indication that you are struggling with an addiction to alcohol.
  6. You regularly blackout from drinking
    A blackout occurs as a result of drinking more alcohol than the body can handle. When a person blacks out, he or she loses the ability to form short-term memories and is unable to recall periods of time. Blacking out can be incredibly dangerous and put individuals at a heightened risk for injury. Experiencing blackouts is often a sign that a person is addicted to alcohol.
  7. You experience negative consequences as a result of your alcohol abuse
    Alcohol abuse and addiction can increase a person’s risk of experiencing a variety of negative consequences. For example, a person may have problems with friends or family or even run into issues with the legal system as a result of his or her actions while intoxicated. The more negative consequences someone experiences as a result of alcohol abuse, the more likely he or she is to benefit from alcohol rehab.
  8. You have tried to limit or quit drinking to no avail
    Many people who struggle with an alcohol use disorder have tried to limit or quit drinking on their own but are unable to do so. While this can be frustrating, it isn’t a sign of failure. Alcohol addiction is a disease and often requires professional help to manage and overcome. If you have tried and failed to quit drinking, it may be time to consider a formal alcohol rehab programme.

Getting Help For Alcohol Addiction:
If you find yourself relating to a few or many of the signs discussed above, you may benefit from an alcohol addiction rehab programme. Seeking help for an alcohol use disorder can be scary, but it’s important to know that you’re not alone
Finding the right programme for you or your loved one begins by understanding what options are available. If you need AUD treatment, there are several different types of alcohol rehab programmes at varying levels of intensity across South Africa that can help .The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) describes the following elements and settings for alcohol rehabilitation:

Detoxification: Many alcohol rehabs start with detoxification – a medically managed withdrawal from alcohol. This stage allows the body to clear itself of any alcohol. If you are admitted for inpatient detox, you will generally receive 24-hour care, staff monitoring and management of any symptoms of acute alcohol withdrawal that may present during this period.
Inpatient Primary Residential Treatment: After successful withdrawal management, you may continue on with additional rehabilitation efforts. These highly intensive 24-hour-a-day programmes offer an array of services. Treatments provided address the social and behavioural problems associated with addiction to help make the lasting changes necessary for maintaining recovery. Although the treatment may only last weeks, it is full of intensive therapeutic interventions and may sometimes be based on a modified 12-step approach. During your stay, you will engage in therapy and may participate in peer support groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous.
Outpatient Treatment: Outpatient treatment is a form of alcohol rehab that offers low-intensity daily programming opportunities for those who are either living at home, in a sober living, or in another conducive environment. Outpatient treatment is often, but not always, the least costly of these levels of care and provides flexibility to those who are working, going to school, or pursuing other educational or professional goals while receiving treatment for their AUD.

If you or a loved one needs assistance with alcoholism – know that help is readily available. The road to recovery is not always an easy one but getting yourself or your loved one the best possible care from the team at Crossroads Recovery Centre, provides you with a map to sober, healthy living. No matter how bad things seem, there is hope and it’s only a phone call away. If you or anyone close to you needs help with an addiction to sex, gambling, substances, alcohol or food, please contact us for a free assessment.

Sources

  1. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. (2020). Understanding alcohol use disorder.
  2. Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders: DSM-5 (5th ed.). (2013). Washington, D.C.: American Psychiatric Association.
  3. National Institutes of Health. (n.d.). Rethinking drinking alcohol & your health: What are the risks.
  4. National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2018). Principles of drug addiction treatment: A research-based guide (third edition).
  5. Rapp, R. C., Xu, J., Carr, C. A., Lane, D. T., Wang, J., & Carlson, R. (2006). Treatment barriers identified by substance abusers assessed at a centralized intake unit. Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment, 30(3), 227-35.
  6. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. (2017). Strategic plan 2017-2021 goal 4: Develop and improve treatment for alcohol misuse, alcohol use disorder, co-occurring conditions, and alcohol-related consequences.

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  • The encouragement, love and support from the team at Crossroads allowed me to eventually see that I was worth something - that my life could be turned around and that I could accomplish the things that had long been a forgotten dream.
    Oliver VG
    Read more
  • On the last day of my stint at Crossroads I could only express gratitude towards all who works there. A wise councillor once commented on my question when one is ready for rehab by explaining that when one is ready for rehab, rehab is ready for you.
    Johan B
    Read more
  • I was lost and my soul was broken until I ended up at Crossroads and was introduced to the Twelve Steps. With the help of their excellent staff and amazing support I have recently been clean for 18 months, I could not have done it without them!
    Carla S
    Read more
  • "Just for today I am more than three years in recovery. I have Cross Roads to thank for this wonderful gift. Cross Roads helped me to set a firm foundation in my recovery on which I can continue to build."
    Angelique J
    Read more
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Know the Facts About the drug Cat.

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Know the Facts About the drug Cat.

23 June, 2021Articles, News

Methcathinone or “cat”, as it is more commonly known, is a stimulant that is structurally similar to methamphetamine and cathinone. It is clandestinely manufactured from readily available chemicals and is fairly cheap and easy to manufacture in home kitchens. The drug is concocted from a “witches brew” of acids, thinners, and over-the-counter asthma medication (ephedrine). It is usually found as a white or off-white crystalline powder, which is most commonly snorted, although it can be taken orally by mixing it with a beverage or diluted in water. It may also be injected intravenously. Methcathinone produces amphetamine-like activity and is a highly addictive drug, similar to crack cocaine. Similar to other stimulants, methcathinone can amplify the action of the neurotransmitters, norepinephrine and dopamine. As is the case with crack cocaine, the addiction is difficult to treat.

As of June 2014, cat became controlled as a Class C drug under the Misuse of Drugs Act (1971). Possession incurs a possible sentence of two years imprisonment, a fine or both. Possession with intent to supply or production could each result in a maximum sentence of 14 years imprisonment, a fine or both.

Negative side-effects of the drug cat may include:

  • Anxiety
  • Convulsions
  • Delusions
  • Fever
  • Hallucinations
  • Tremors

Long-term effects may include :

  • Hallucinations
  • Anxiety followed by depression
  • Tremors and convulsions
  • Anorexia, malnutrition, and weight loss
  • Elevated blood pressure
  • Death

Early withdrawal symptoms of anxiety and profuse sweating can precede convulsions, hallucinations, and severe depression. Withdrawal should be done with the assistance of a medical professional.

Cat is psychologically highly addictive, individuals may lose their ability to feel empathy. They may also lose their self-worth and direction and often become distant and removed. However an addiction to cat can be treated through the correct methods and therapies, as with any addiction it is important to address it holistically and openly.

If you or a loved one needs assistance with an addiction to cat – know that help is readily available. The road to recovery is not always an easy one, but getting yourself or your loved one the best possible care from the team at Crossroads Recovery Centres provides you with a map to sober, healthy living. No matter how bad things seem, there is hope, and it’s only a phone call away. If you or anyone close to you needs help with an addiction to sex, gambling, substances, alcohol or food, contact us for a free assessment.

www.crossroadsrecovery.co.za

074 89 51043 JHB

012 450 5033 PTA

Resources :

https://www.news24.com/health24/lifestyle/street-drugs/psychoactives/what-is-the-drug-called-cat-20141112

Cat / Khat dependency

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  • The encouragement, love and support from the team at Crossroads allowed me to eventually see that I was worth something - that my life could be turned around and that I could accomplish the things that had long been a forgotten dream.
    Oliver VG
    Read more
  • On the last day of my stint at Crossroads I could only express gratitude towards all who works there. A wise councillor once commented on my question when one is ready for rehab by explaining that when one is ready for rehab, rehab is ready for you.
    Johan B
    Read more
  • I was lost and my soul was broken until I ended up at Crossroads and was introduced to the Twelve Steps. With the help of their excellent staff and amazing support I have recently been clean for 18 months, I could not have done it without them!
    Carla S
    Read more
  • "Just for today I am more than three years in recovery. I have Cross Roads to thank for this wonderful gift. Cross Roads helped me to set a firm foundation in my recovery on which I can continue to build."
    Angelique J
    Read more
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The Four Stages of Alcoholism

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The Four Stages of Alcoholism

09 June, 2021Articles, News

If you are concerned that you or a loved one may be an alcoholic, then recognizing the stages of alcoholism may help you weigh the options available to you for detoxification and treatment. The four phases of alcoholism were defined by E. Morton Jellinek, a scientific researcher who did extensive work on alcoholism and was a major contributor to the modern view of alcoholism as a biological, not moral, failing. The alcoholism stages are: pre-alcoholic, early alcoholic, middle alcoholic, and late alcoholic.

Stage One: Pre-Alcoholic

During the pre-alcoholic stage, there is little evidence of problem drinking. Much of the behaviour during this phase would look normal to a casual observer. Drinking is primarily social at the beginning of this stage. However, as this stage progresses; drinking is used with increasingly greater frequency as a means for stress reduction. The major physiological characteristic of this phase is that the person begins to develop a tolerance for alcohol. This means that he or she can drink ever larger amounts of alcohol while still functioning. Eventually, it takes large amounts of alcohol to result in inebriation. If you are wondering if you are in the pre-alcoholic stage, ask yourself if you drink to make yourself feel better, or if you drink because the people around you are drinking and it is socially appropriate. If you are drinking manageable amounts in social settings, than you most likely do not need to be overly worried. However, if you are drinking to make yourself feel better, to avoid worrying, to forget bad memories, or to reduce anxiety, you may be in the pre-alcoholic stage. Also be wary of drinking to relieve physical pain, which can escalate. If you are drinking to dull physical pain, make an appointment with your doctor to discuss the problem.

Stage Two: Early Alcoholic

After you have suffered your first alcohol related blackout, you are in the early alcoholic stage. This stage is characterized by a growing discomfort with drinking combined with an inability to resist it. You may find yourself lying about drinking to friends or loved ones. You might also hide drinks, perhaps spiking your soda or coffee when no one else is around. During this stage, your tolerance of alcohol continues to grow. You may also become obsessed with thoughts of alcohol.

Stage Three: Middle Alcoholic

In the middle alcoholic stage the symptoms of alcoholism usually become obvious to friend and family members. You may begin missing work or social obligations because of drinking or hangovers. You might drink at inappropriate times, such as when caring for your children, driving, or at work. You may also become increasingly irritable, arguing with your spouse or friends. Your body will begin to change because of alcohol abuse. You may develop facial redness, stomach bloating, sluggishness, weight gain, or weight loss. In this stage, you may make several attempts to stop drinking and even attend support groups. Support groups, as well as other forms of treatment, can be effective. Many who struggle with alcohol abuse are able to successfully control urges to drink with help.

Stage Four: Late Alcoholic

During the late alcoholic stage, the effects of long-term alcohol abuse are apparent, and serious health problems may develop. Drinking becomes an all-day affair, and everything in life, including family and friends, takes a backseat to drinking. If job loss has not already occurred, it frequently happens in this stage. Diseases caused by drinking may develop, such as cirrhosis of the liver or dementia. Paranoia is characteristic of this stage, as well. Late-stage alcoholics might also become overly fearful and not be able to explain why. Attempts to stop drinking may be characterized by tremors or hallucinations. However, even the last stages of alcoholism can be helped with therapy, detoxification, and rehabilitation.

If you or a loved one needs assistance with an alcoholism – know that help is readily available. The road to recovery is not always an easy one, but getting yourself or your loved one the best possible care from the team at Crossroads Recovery Centre provides you with a map to sober, healthy living. No matter how bad things seem, there is hope, and it’s only a phone call away. If you or anyone close to you needs help with an addiction to sex, gambling, substances, alcohol or food, contact us for a free assessment.

www.crossroadsrecovery.co.za

074 89 51043 JHB

012 450 5033 PTA

Resources

Alcohol.org. 2018. Alcoholic Types. The Four Stages of Alcoholism. https://www.alcohol.org/alcoholism-types/stages/

Written by: Taleen Heath

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Stories of Recovery

  • The encouragement, love and support from the team at Crossroads allowed me to eventually see that I was worth something - that my life could be turned around and that I could accomplish the things that had long been a forgotten dream.
    Oliver VG
    Read more
  • On the last day of my stint at Crossroads I could only express gratitude towards all who works there. A wise councillor once commented on my question when one is ready for rehab by explaining that when one is ready for rehab, rehab is ready for you.
    Johan B
    Read more
  • I was lost and my soul was broken until I ended up at Crossroads and was introduced to the Twelve Steps. With the help of their excellent staff and amazing support I have recently been clean for 18 months, I could not have done it without them!
    Carla S
    Read more
  • "Just for today I am more than three years in recovery. I have Cross Roads to thank for this wonderful gift. Cross Roads helped me to set a firm foundation in my recovery on which I can continue to build."
    Angelique J
    Read more
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