Chemically benzodiazepines (benzos) are a cocktail of medications that perform numerous functions. Found accidentally in 1955, they were mass marketed in the early 1960s for a wide range of conditions. They contain sedatives, anticonvulsants, muscle relaxants, and anti anxiety medications. With all these components benzos treat a variety of conditions in one fell swoop. Those with panic disorders, anxiety problems, seizures and insomnia find relief when taking benzos. With all their suppressant effects on the body, benzos can even help to control the symptoms of severe alcohol withdrawal. But this comes with a price. Although some people take xanax from time to time due to flying anxiety, others cannot use it in this manner and can run into problems they didn’t anticipate.
Their fast action and strong effects mean that patients in dire conditions can find quick relief but that they may also find that the positive effects are strongly addictive. When patients stop taking benzos they sometime experience the rebound effect, which is a recurrence of symptoms that are far more severe than they were prior to medicating. The settling point of the physiology of the patient changes with prolonged use. Therefore, when the medication is discontinued the deficit is more pronounced until the body returns to its initial homeostatic control point. Read the rest of this entry »
Synthetic drugs have gained in popularity over recent years. There were only two known and circulating synthetic drugs five years ago and now there are over 185 being regularly sold and consumed in the United States. Spice, the first seized synthetic drug, was making headlines in 2008. There are no specific recipes for synthetic drugs, as most are dangerously laced with various substances to increase their weight in sale. The main ingredients should be cannabinoids and cathinones. Cannabinoids get their name from the receptors in the human brain that they affect. There are 85 different forms of cannabinoids and they all have their own effects. Cathinones are stimulants that are of simple structure and similar to dopamine. There are numerous cathinones of varying purity. Read the rest of this entry »
I saw a client last week who just narrowly resisted falling into getting pot and using drugs again. He had called his dealer, but luckily there was no one home. Brian sat in the car in a parking lot for 50 minutes before calling him to begin with. Then one there was no response, he stayed in his car another hour thinking about the whole situation. He had been clean for four months and almost blew it. There was both disappointment and relief.
One thing that he realized was that the tension he had that led to calling his dealer was due to a fight he had with his son over money. Brian, like most of us, hates to sit in discomfort. Most people do and we usually cope with it through activities such as going to the gym, calling a friend to vent or throwing ourselves into work. Read the rest of this entry »
The march to legalized recreational marijuana use has begun and there are many different opinions about it. Over the last few years, several states have adapted medical marijuana use and recreational marijuana use is legal in Colorado as of January 1 2014. However, the picture for the remaining states is unclear. In an earlier post I wrote about Washington and Colorado here in terms of the medical marijuana legalization. The medical as well as recreational issues for pot are both debated with strong passion on each side.
Efforts are on in effort state with groups like the Marijuana Policy Project and the Drug Policy Alliance working together to push bills, referendums and laws. Along with Colorado, these associations are trying to push other states into accepting and legalizing the recreational use or marijuana. Several states could pass the ruling. Read the rest of this entry »
Finding a certified or accredited drug testing laboratory is relatively easy.
For example, to find a laboratory accredited by the College of American Pathologists (CAP), click here.
To find a laboratory certified by both the Department of Transportation and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), click here.
Laboratories strive to get these endorsements because it tells people that they’re upholding a particular standard in drug testing. In the US, three different bodies give accreditation or certification for drug testing laboratories. By using these laboratories, you’re guaranteed to be using a lab that has gone through testing and inspections to adhere to the most stringent guidelines. Read the rest of this entry »
Addiction is the overuse of an undefined substance. It can range from sugar, chocolate to drug and alcohol. Addictive tendencies can be brought on by stress, developed through poor health habits and even some believe through an hereditary root.
Preventing and controlling addiction can be helped to some extent if you can commit to a safe diet and exercise routine. The motivation for personal change is a key factor. This will help with temptations that arise. Thinking out the consequences of indulging and not being just in the present moment gives one perspective. Read the rest of this entry »
Court cases that involve disputes over children tend to be the highest conflict situations that exist in the court system. The subject matter is difficult to ignore: where your children will live, where they will go to school, and how much time each parent will spend with them. You cannot find a more important subject for most parents. Yet many parents completely sacrifice their status as a parent because they prioritize drugs over their children. As a divorce and custody attorney, approximately 25% of my cases involve children and drugs. It is an epidemic. But what is really sad is that such an important part of life has been given a back seat to the addiction. The fact is that thousands of parents have made a decision to give up their kids just so they could continue to exist as a drug addict. Read the rest of this entry »
I’m happy to be doing a givewaway to two people of one of my favorite books, “Sacred Therapies”. It has meditation and yoga sets useful for mental health disorders including PTSD, OCD, anxiety and helpful practices for addiction issues. You can read about it at Sacred Therapies: The Kundalini Yoga Meditation Handbook for Mental Health . There are sets for addiction and impulse control as well. Many people with alcohol or substance abuse issues also have dual diagnosis situations where there may be major depression, generalized anxiety disorder or another underlying situation. Mr. Khalsa has protocols for several of the DSM IV-R conditions based on his clinical trials and yoga studies. Read the rest of this entry »
Drinking is a problem faced by many adult men and women, but the good news is by having a plan you can exercise self-control. Also, if you have a history of drinking, you will need to use honesty and self-observation.
Whenever summer approaches, the temptation to drink increases both due to the heat as well as the number of gatherings. Always keep a bottle of water by your side. This is because apart from being a healthy alternative, constant sips of water will keep your stomach full and can reduce the interest in both sodas and alcoholic beverages. This also is an intelligent way to meet the daily requirement of 8-12 glasses of water a day and keeps you hydrated all day long to avoid dehydration. Read the rest of this entry »
Disappointment can lead to disillusionment, sadness, anger and attempts to numb the pain including drugs and alcohol. What do the great sages of the east/west say about this feeling of being let down by others or life?
There can be no deep disappointment where there is not deep love.
Martin Luther King, Jr
Marijuana is a controversial topic and some say it can be used without abuse in a way that many can drink socially without becoming an interference. Others say that it can be a gateway drug and reduce one’s productivity.
There are a number of arrests where those in trouble were using marijuana purely for personal reasons and they had a clear history. They also paid taxes, cared for their families and were gainfully employed. For them, marijuana was a recreational drug that they used irregularly but responsibly. For this reason, a small group of people has always been vocal about the need for legalizing the use of marijuana. In the November 2012 election, voters in Colorado and Washington took the world by surprise when they voted to make marijuana legal. There is still a lot of controversy on this and a variety or opinions. Lets take a quick look this
In the last three decades, hospitals have been noticing an alarming trend. Nearly four to ten percent of pregnant women in the US are using drugs such as marijuana and cocaine during their pregnancies. There is also a hidden and unestimated number that have been using prescription drugs for pain during their pregnancies resulting in addicted newborns. Sadness fills most people’s hearts when hearing about babies addicted at the time of birth. Researchers say that the number of newborn babies that are addicted to prescription drugs have already tripled. According to the statistics, state funded Medicaid programs spent more than $720 million on caring for these sick and addicted babies.
Hospital staff and researchers have always had to struggle with crack babies or babies that were born addicted to cocaine or illegal drugs ingested by mothers with drug issues, but now the situation seems to have been changed a bit. Many pregnant mothers with drug issues can be addicted to strong prescription drugs like Vicodin and Oxycontin and were located in states including Maine and Kentucky. The newborns also show a different addiction pattern as well as completely different drug related side effects. In fact, doctors have named the condition as neonatal abstinence syndrome. Read the rest of this entry »
As a social worker and yoga teacher, I have found that a number of different yoga sets and meditations can be helpful for anxiety, depression and addiction issues. This video shows a powerful meditation that is useful for breaking unwanted habits.
There have been a number of studies and books that have discussed how kundalini yoga can relieve various mental health issues. For instance, the book titled “Sacred Therapies: The Kundalini Yoga Meditation Handbook For Mental Health” discusses double-blind studies that have been effective for treating OCD, anxiety and a number of other conditions in the DSM IV-R:
I have seen over the years in classes that I’ve taught as well as attended, very impressive changes by those who regularly practice the different sets. The two hemispheres of the brain are balanced, insomnia improves, the glands are stimulated and there is an interesting way that calmness grows and yet there is more energy at the same time. Read the rest of this entry »
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Are you looking for a small guide you can carry around with you to deal with stressful situations that arise? It incorporates meditation,breathing and psychology and is just 3.00. I wrote it and it's been distributed at youth centers, mental health clinics, yoga centers, schools and many settings.