Drug abuse or addiction, also called substance abuse, is one the major calamities facing many countries in the world today. Drugs are chemical substances which can fall under prescription medications (for treating illnesses and given with use instructions) or recreational drugs (drugs taken for leisure that have no particular intake instructions).
Drugs can be classified according to their effects on the body and mind and under these classification are: stimulants, depressants and hallucinogens or psychadelics.
Stimulants speed up brain and CNS activity inducing in the body and mind: a surge in energy, increased heart rate, increased breathing and respiration among other automatic body processes, increased alertness, self esteem, self awareness and hallucinations. The commonly abused drugs in this category are: crack cocaine, crystal meth, nicotine (taken mostly in form of cigarettes), Ritalin etc.
Depressants slow the brain and CNS functioning which slow the speed of automatic body processes; in effect reducing blood pressure, lowering body temperature, inducing loss of sleep and appetite as well as reducing concentration, loss of balance and numbing pain. Drugs mostly abused in this category include all painkillers and cough suppressants prescription medication such as: morphine, buprenorphine, Opana, heroin, Tramadol, Hydrocodone, Fentanyl, acetaminophen etc as well as hard drugs such as heroin and alcohol.
Hallucinogens are those drugs which alter thinking and the mostly abused drugs in this category are substances such as marijuana and LSD.
Drug abuse and addiction
Drug abuse is any unregulated intake of prescription drugs without following the prescription instructions. It is also the extreme intake of recreational drugs. Drug abuse alters chemical composition of cells in no predictable way; which, with time, increases tolerance for the drug causing the body and mind to experience reduced effects of the drug. Increased tolerance for the drug forces the abuser to take even higher amounts of the drug which worsens the situation, often causing dependence and addiction. Addiction is a compulsion for the drug (mental and physical) which is characterized by withdrawal symptoms in the absence of the drug.
This is alcohol addiction which develops from extreme abuse of alcohol for the drunkenness and pain numbing effects it has. Alcoholism has many social and personal impacts which affect not only the individual but the whole of society in general.
In Idaho, the negative impacts of alcoholism have been so devastating that intervention (in the name of alcoholism treatment/ rehabilitation centers have been set up all over) is important. Any facility that offers treatment for alcoholism or drug addiction aims at helping the addicts get over the habit safely so that they can resume their regular duties to their loved ones and get their life back on track.
Alcoholism and drug addiction treatment centers
Treatment for alcohol and drug addiction is carried out in two important phases namely: detoxification and therapy, though there are many other facets to any type of dependency.
Detoxification, which is the medical treatment of the addiction, is withdrawal of the substance from the addict and treatment of the resultant withdrawal symptoms with a treating drug (usually also a depressant). Withdrawing alcohol from the addict is done to help the body get over the dependence as it metabolizes and eliminates alcohol residue from the blood; but since its not so easy due to the withdrawal symptoms, withdrawal should be done gradually as the treating medication is gradually introduced when needed. It is a similar process for detoxing from various other drugs
Therapy is counseling for the addict before detox, during and even after detox; in groups or alone. Counseling is important at each of the mentioned stages to help the addict understand what is happening at each stage and hence be emotionally prepared to venture into recovery and achieve success, for the usage of whatever particular substance is in essence just a symptom of a greater issue that needs addressing for real success of getting clean and sober.