Experts in Young Adult Addiction and Trauma Treatment

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Friday, June 26, 2015

Specialized Addiction Recovery For Young Women

specialized addiction recovery for young women
While men are more likely than women to become chemically dependent, women face unique challenges throughout their addiction and recovery. Biological, emotional, relational, and societal factors differ between the genders, so it’s important that addiction specialists understand the unique needs of female clients and gear recovery programs to meet those needs.

Facts About Female Addiction

Studies indicate that women:
  • Progress from substance use to substance abuse more quickly than men, even when they are using less.
  • Struggle more with relapse than male clients.
  • Recover differently than their male counterparts. 

Brain chemistry & hormones. Women’s brains light up in different areas than men when they are using substances, and female hormones may also play a role in addiction susceptibility. These biological differences could be partly to blame for women “telescoping” more quickly from drug dabbling to physical addiction. (Unfortunately, women also develop liver cirrhosis twice as quickly as men.)

Trauma. Women are more likely to suffer from mood disorders, sexual trauma, or other forms of abuse, which can readily lead to addiction. A high-quality women’s recovery facility should be aware of these problems and understand how to treat them. Treatment-complicating issues may include depression, anxiety, eating disorders, poor body image, dysfunctional family relationships, self-esteem problems, and self-harm behavior.

Getting help. A study in the journal Substance Use & Misuse reported that, unlike men who are culturally encouraged to solve problems on their own, women are more likely to recognize their need for help. Unfortunately, they are also more liable to put off going to rehab because of the stigma attached to female addiction. Immersed in guilt and shame, they see themselves as a bad person rather than as someone struggling with a treatable illness. When women finally seek treatment, they are more likely to leave treatment early because they feel pulled to return to their families, friends, and caregiving responsibilities.

Relapse rates. Women relapse more often than men. There is much speculation about why this occurs, but it could be because they suffer from co-occurring conditions more than men—or because they tend to return to unhealthy relationships after rehab. Believing that they can change toxic relationships for the better, they end up falling into the same negative patterns that drove them to addiction in the first place.

Red Oak Recovery® Program for Young Women

At Red Oak Recovery®, our women’s program is geared toward the unique needs of young adult female clients. We begin by teaching young women to create and maintain safe physical and emotional boundaries, and we specialize in the nuances of addiction and trauma in young women. Our program helps young women exchange negative behaviors like manipulation, deceitfulness, self-harm tendencies, disordered eating, and irrational belief systems for healthy, productive responses to stress.

Using 12-step programs, nutritional and recreational therapy, addiction education, and holistic treatments, we provide supportive addiction treatment that encourages young women to connect with others facing similar problems. Since women are hardwired for relationships, group therapy is a critical part of any successful rehab program. To learn more about gender-separate treatment programs for young men and young women, click here. To begin your recovery journey or discuss addiction recovery financing, call 866.831.9107 today!

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Young Adults And Opiate Abuse

Opiates (also called narcotics or opioids) are a class of prescription painkillers with the potential to become highly addictive. Typically prescribed for post-surgical recovery or moderate to severe pain, opiate use has become an epidemic among young adults. The National Institute on Drug Abuse states that the abuse of prescription medications is highest among 18 to 25 year olds.

It’s a Big Problem 

In years past, the abuse of prescription drugs was swept under the rug and not discussed because “It’s medication, not illicit drugs.” It was the secret nobody talked about, but that didn’t mean the problem didn’t exist.

Statistics range widely concerning the use of opiates for reasons other than pain relief. Research suggests that “problematic use” (defined as misuse or abuse) occurs an average of 21 to 29% of the time. Physical addiction to narcotics occurred in 8 to 12% of cases studied. These numbers show the high frequency of opioid abuse, and the need for treatment programs that aid young men and young women who struggle with overcoming addiction.

Risky Behavior

Substance addiction can lead to potentially dangerous physical issues such as slowed breathing and irregular heartbeat. Addicts may also display poor judgment and are more likely to suffer from mental illness and co-occurring conditions, including depression. Poor judgment can take many forms, including sexual behavior.

Studies show that young adults who are dependent on opiates engage in high-risk sexual behavior such as unprotected sex and a greater number of partners than those who don’t have drug problems. Furthermore, research has proven that the young adult children of opiate-addicted parents are more likely to take sexual risks. These risks not only threaten personal relationships, but physical health, as well.

New Guidelines for Opiate Addiction Treatment 

The vast problem of opiate abuse is no longer a dirty little secret, and that’s good news. Highly qualified professionals committed to creating effective treatment plans are now getting into the game to treat people who want to overcome narcotics addiction.

The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) recently announced the forthcoming release of new practice guidelines for the “Use of Medications in the Treatment of Addiction Involving Opioid Use.” The guidelines will explore medications that are designed to treat opiate addiction, as well as reference multidisciplinary treatment plans aimed to help patients kick the habit. This is a huge step, and a welcome one, in the medical community.

We’re Here to Help 

Red Oak Recovery®’s substance abuse treatment facility combines clinical, evidence-based programs with innovative outdoor recreation and nutritional therapy in a holistic approach that gets you the help you need. Call 866.831.9107 today to learn more about Red Oak Recovery®’s programs for young men and women. With treatment plans for those in early recovery, our credentialed treatment team is committed to supporting our patients’ physical health and emotional challenges in a compassionate, safe environment.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Secrets Keep You Sick

Living a Secret Life as an Addict 

Is your substance abuse making you ashamed of who you are? Are you living a secret life that not even your closest friends and family know about? As a young adult, you may feel trapped or like you have lost control of your own life, but you are not alone. Lying about your drinking or drug abuse habits might be a way you try to convince yourself that everything is okay. However, there are consequences to this behavior including feeling more isolated and less in touch with the world around you. Continuing to lie and a life of secrecy can affect your personal relationships, your health and your safety.

Secrets Keep You Sick

Signs of addiction can be very obvious if you open yourself to recognizing them. Neglecting responsibilities, degraded school or work performance, physical and health changes, relationship problems and sudden mood changes can all be signs of a drinking problem. You might start keeping secrets from your family and friends about how much and how often you drink or abuse drugs and about your own personal life. Recognizing these signs and getting help early can bring normalcy back into your life. These secrets can grow over time, leaving you isolated from your loved ones and your true self. The more secrets escalate, the more detrimental they become to your physical, mental and spiritual well-being.

Taking the First Step

The first step in getting better is to not keep the secret of your substance abuse to yourself. Being honest with yourself and admitting you have a problem is the most difficult first step - but you are not alone. At Red Oak Recovery® you will be among a community of young adults who have shared experiences and learn how to move away from secrecy and into honesty together. If alcohol addiction is contributing to the secrecy in your life, early treatment and intervention can help connect you with an alcohol treatment center that works best for you. At Red Oak Recovery®, our licensed therapists can help you through this early phase of acceptance and recovery.