Monthly Archives: August 2017

Can an Addict Change?

Not everyone with an addiction is looking to make a change; however, each person is certainly in one of the stages of change. In their book Changing for Good, authors Prochaska and DiClemente define 5 stages of change,

A closer look at the stages of change is helpful not only for people living with addiction, but they can also help family members (or loved ones) of an addict act as a positive agent in the progression addiction recovery change.

It is important to remember, each stage is natural. Success is not part of every stage, but just knowing that the lasting recovery of stage 5 does indeed exist can be a powerful motivation.

The 5 Stages of Change

Stage 1: Precontemplation

This stage of change is personified by a clear lack of a desire to change or even consider changing. A person with an addict in this stage is likely in denial, and probably early in their downward path. There has been no real amount of thought put into the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse at this point. No real desire to change. Their attitude will be defensive, and they likely believe they do not have a problem.

What to do: If you are suffering from addiction, you are probably not at this stage. The mere act of reading this post moves you to the next stage of change, at the very least. However, if your loved one is in the precontemplation stage, the key is to be aware, get educated on substance abuse disorder, and keep yourself from enabling their behaviors. Your loved one might not listen to you right now, so set your boundaries and allow the negative consequences of substance abuse to affect them. It’s an unfortunate fact, but the pain of addiction helps move people forward in the change process.

Stage 2: Contemplation

Once a person has moved to the second stage of change, contemplation, there is some desire to get help. Or at least an understanding that there should be a desire to get help. However, the desire to simply continue down the destructive path is just as strong or stronger.

A person in the second stage of change is truly ambivalent—there is a desire both to stop the behavior and a desire to keep on using drugs or alcohol. The good news of this stage is there is a deep knowledge of a need for change (this is a cognitive dissonance of addiction recovery). This makes a person with an addiction more open to discussion.

On the other side, the difficulty of this stage of change is its possible longevity. Unless they move through and out of it, nothing will happen. And some people can spend years in the contemplation stage. People here may say something to the effect of, “I really need to think about quitting someday.”

What to do: Keep on reading. Now is a good time to make a decision for change before your life ends up with broken relationships and tragedy and the endless cycle of contemplation. “Someday” has to turn into “today” at some point, and there is no better time to do it than right now.

Stage 3: Preparation

Some people find that this stage comes after the “rock bottom.” But rock bottom doesn’t have to happen. Typically the consequences of the addiction or the actions are enough to make a person realize that something has to give. This stage is the “I have to do something about this” stage. This is when a person takes a look at what the possibilities are.

What to do: This is a transitional stage, and you might be there right now. If in fact, you are thinking about making a lasting change, check out this post on what to look for in a quality detox. Your next decision on where to find help is pivotal for your recovery journey.

Stage 4: Action

You have to believe that there is something you can do about your addiction. As well, there must be a knowledge of what steps to take in order to bring about the change. But, importantly, you have to take the steps. At this point research is happening, possibly even a phone call has already been made to a detox or treatment center.

The key here for addiction recovery is that without a program, a person trying to make a change under willpower alone has a high chance of relapse. Change in other life-aspects is often possible with a personal strength of will. Trying to start exercising? Eating better? Being a better husband or wife? Boyfriend or girlfriend? These things can be done. However, addiction is unique in its ability to hijack the brain. The best way to change your behavior in regards to addiction is to find help.

This is where quality detox and residential treatment comes in. This decision then carries a person with an addiction on to the next stage.

Here are a few reasons why an inpatient detox and subsequent rehab are better than will power alone:

  • Safety
  • Get you away from temptation
  • Support and guidance of professionals
  • Accountability
  • Skill building for a new life
  • Creating a new community
  • Get to the root of the issue with therapy and counseling

What to do: If you are at this stage, hopefully, you have chosen to get help at a detox center such as SoCal Detox. After the detoxification process, SoCal Detox goes to the extra effort of making sure you land in the right place to continue your journey of recovery. Find out more about our aftercare options here.

Stage 5: Maintenance

From detox to rehab a person recovering from a drug or alcohol addiction will eventually have to transition back into normal society. There they will need to avoid temptation, cultivate skills to counter their triggers, anticipate complications and put their long-term strategies in place.

In this stage, working a program wins out. And patience counts. And time passes. And the problem behavior begins to fade into a less prominent corner of life. From time to time temptations may arise, but momentum and meaning in life help keep them at bay.

What to do: Stick with your program. Don’t skip meetings. Stay in community and get held accountable. Continue on your path and celebrate how far you have come.

Simply deciding to change isn’t enough. You need help. Deciding to change and picking up the phone is what matters. No matter what stage you are on in your journey to recovery, the addiction specialists at SoCal Detox are here to help you take the next step. Call us today for a free consultation, 888-590-0777.

sleep hygiene

Addiction Recovery and Sleep Hygiene

It could be that your nightly ritual has been transformed. Once upon a time, you relied on that nightcap or joint to bring on the mellow. And these days your stresses and anxieties seem to be getting the best of you in the battle for shut-eye. And in recovery, your typical “sleep aids” are not an option. There are multiple reasons, but for people in recovery, especially early recovery, sleeping is an issue. Insomnia, bad dreams, constant tossing and turning, these are all common early-recovery occurrences. And that’s where sleep hygiene comes in.

Matters Get Worse

The Journal of Addiction Medicine has found that “incidence of insomnia is five times higher in people in recovery than in the general population.” The profit of a good night’s sleep might surprise you.

Here are a few interesting sleep benefits:

Better memory

  • Longer life
  • Healing damaged cells
  • Boost to the immune system
  • Recovering from the day
  • Repairing your heart and blood vessels
  • Better immune system
  • Among many others

With these and more, it’s not surprising that sleep is an important part of your addiction recovery plan. Beyond all that, the effects of sleeplessness might lead to relapse. What happens when you don’t have a good night’s sleep? Aside from missing out on the medical health benefits, you feel sleepy. Maybe even fuzzy-headed—all day. And in early recovery, this is an issue. You need your wits about you.

Can’t Sleep?

You need to find a solution to the non-drowsiness of recovery. So the first thing you need to consider is an update to your sleep hygiene.

Sleep hygiene parallels personal hygiene. Think about it, if you didn’t shower, brush your teeth, keep your hair and nails trimmed, things would get out of hand quickly. Similarly, there are a few things you can do to daily maintain good sleep hygiene. Simply making some of these things a habit will go along way to helping you with your early recovery shut eye.

Exercise and Eat Well

The toughest one is first. Exercise. And eat well. We don’t really have to belabor this because you already know it. Exercise and eating well will save your life. It will make you look and feel better. Exercise decreases depression. Basically, it is good for you on so many levels. Basically, it’s one of the best things you can do in life. Oh yeah, and it will help you sleep. It’s good sleep hygiene. Just do it.

Limit Nap Time

This is common sense, but it is also tough to do. Especially if you are already in the mix of poor sleep. You are tired. So, of course, you want to nap if you feel like you can finally do it. Napping feels good in the moment, but those hour-long-or-more day-sleeps contribute to bad sleep hygiene. If you absolutely have to take a nap, limit it to 20-30 minutes.

Don’t Do Activities in Your Bed

Your body and brain have pretty strong associative abilities. If you only sleep in your bed, you will naturally get drowsy when you finally get under the covers. If you are using your bed as a station to work on your scrapbooking or playing solitaire on your phone, your body will connect bed to awake activities.

Don’t Force It

If it’s simply not happening, get up and do something relaxing. TV or video games are not the best alternative options here. They are too stimulating and will lead to more awake time. In stead try deep breathing, reading, writing, meditation (or prayer), or uhhhh … counting sheep.

Don’t Drink Coffee Close to Bedtime

Or really, take in any kind of consumable stimulant. Nicotine is a stimulant, so if you are used to vaping in bed, you might want to reconsider the habit.

Set a Schedule

Give yourself a bedtime and a waking time. And even when the weekend rolls around, try to stick to it. As well, giving yourself a nightly ritual can help. Warming up some noncaffeinated tea, taking a warm shower, doing some breathing or stretches. All of these can help your body get psychologically and physically prepared for slumber.

Choose Your Sleep Hygiene Adventure

These are a few suggestions for good sleep hygiene. But just like personal grooming, each person’s approach will differ. The key is to keep up with the daily small choices in order to make a big difference in your overall sleep health.

If you are having trouble sleeping and are considering trying sleeping pills, remember, many of them are habit forming and even addictive. Here’s more on The Underlying Problem With Sleeping Pills.

Looking for help with recovery or have an addiction to sleeping pills or any other substance? Please connect with us today. One of our addiction specialists will be happy to answer questions and direct you to your best recovery option. Call, 888-590-0777.

dangers of mixing drugs

Dangers of Mixing Drugs

You hear it on social media. Another celebrity has died way too young. You wait to hear the official reports, but that feeling in your gut is there. You already know. Most likely drug use was a factor. What is often downplayed, however, is the fact that it was a polydrug situation. No single drug but many working fatally together. It was a mixture.

Addiction is a deadly disorder. However, it gets even worse when people begin mixing drugs.

The celebrity aspect is simply an example of the dangers of mixing drugs. The rich and famous are not the only ones who do it. Almost all drug users are polydrug users (meaning they use multiple types of drugs). In fact, 64 percent of people seeking drug addiction treatment are actively mixing drugs.

Drugs Have a Type

Some drugs are depressants and some are stimulants. Alcohol and heroin are examples that have depressant actions. Meth and cocaine are stimulants. Depressants (many times referred to as “downers”) lower neurotransmission levels—reducing stimulation in multiple areas of the brain. While on the opposite side, stimulants (often called “uppers”) increase function.

There are more—psychoactive, hallucinogens, steroids and others—but these are the common ones. Importantly, theses general drug types cause the body to do certain things and create certain sensations in a user. Out of a need for diversity, for a bigger hit, or to overcome the body’s tolerance to certain drugs, people often resort to mixing drugs.

And as dangerous as illicit substances can be, when diverse ones are taken at the same time, they can work against each other in frightening ways.

And of course, unregulated, untested and uncontrolled, drugs are wildly unpredictable. All of this can cause elevated dangerous circumstances. Here are few of the more-common ways people are mixing drugs and the inherent dangers.

 If you are near someone who has recently been mixing drugs to a harmful result, please call 911 immediately.

Mixing Drugs of the Same Type

Depressants
Depressants such as heroin and Xanax are going to lower a person’s heart rate and breathing, and in extreme situations when taken together they could drop someone into a coma or worse. The frightening part of mixing depressants is that people may start with one or two substances and then partake in the worlds most common and widespread depressant—alcohol. When that happens, overdose and fatality are an imminent danger.

Stimulants
Similar to depressants, when you mix stimulants, the effects stack. Causing your body to add activity and sensitivity is already a serious request, but mixing drugs that are stimulants tells your body to take it to the next level. The dangers are pretty obvious here. Strain on the heart, overheating, organ breakdown, high-stress levels, and more. A common drug mixture (and a very dangerous one) is cocaine and ecstasy. Both of these speed the heart and there is a body heating aspect that gets to dangerous levels quickly.

Mixing Drugs of a Different Type

Alcohol and Other Stimulants
Some people are not even aware this is happening. Having a couple of energy drinks or taking a typical dose of Ritalin, or quad-shot cappuccino—these are all stimulants. In and of themselves, they can be handled responsibly. However, when you add alcohol (a depressant) to the mix, unexpected results might occur.

One of the issues with adding alcohol to stimulants is because they are opposite types, the alcohol has less effectiveness. So people drink more. And more. They don’t feel drunk so they keep going. This can easily create alcohol poisoning or alcohol overdose. As well, since both stimulants and alcohol put pressure on the heart, cardiac arrest is a distinct possibility.

Cocaine and Alcohol
As mentioned before, mixing alcohol and stimulants is deadly; however, there is one combo that is particularly dangerous: cocaine and alcohol. When a person uses cocaine alone, the chemical breakdown in the body is still intense but is sometimes doable. However, the way an intoxicated body breaks down cocaine actually creates a completely different scenario.

In fact, during the metabolic process, a new chemical is produced and introduced—cocaethylene. It still gives people a high, sure. But you could die immediately. Among other dangers, The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) has cited alcohol and cocaine as the most common death producing, two-drug combination.

Heroin and Cocaine
It’s called a speedball. It gives someone a euphoric low and keeps them awake to enjoy it. As with any drug combination, bigger problems arise when the user thinks they are okay to continue shooting up (typically a speedball is taken intravenously). You are feeling the effects of the heroin (the depressant), but you are awake and alert. And your heart is still beating. Cocaine (the stimulant) will make you feel like you can keep taking heroin.

Sure your heart is beating now, and you are breathing, but it’s the cocaine doing the work. Once that wears off, there is no telling how low your body will go.

Common Myth

When people hear that someone has a drug use disorder, they assume they are addicted to a specific drug. A crack addict, a meth head, whatever. However, most people struggling with addiction use multiple drugs, and it gets even worse when they do them at the same time—mixing drugs. This polydrug use increases the potential for overdose and death by significant amounts.

Drug use often takes this road. As certain drugs lose their effectiveness, people start to get creative. They use more. And they use in more variety. It is a sad step toward the inevitable and is a situation that is putting their lives at risk with each and every fix.

We are here to help. No one should have to experience the agony of overdose or watching a loved one walk down this path. If you or your friend or a family member are mixing drugs, please call us today to talk about your options.

You could be saving a life. Call, 888-590-0777.

Go here to find out more about the drug detox here at SoCal Detox.

4-7-8 breathing method

4-7-8 Breathing Exercise for Anxiety and Addiction

Anxiety seems to be as much a part of life for a person with a substance use disorder as the drugs or alcohol—whatever they use to medicate themselves. Indeed, it’s often the many anxieties of life a person is looking to avoid or numb when they turn to drugs or alcohol. However, a deep breathing exercise for addiction can offer a healthy alternative way to handle anxiety, and even combat cravings and other health issues. 

What’s Up With Anxiety?

Anxiety is a stress response. It’s quite natural actually. If you happen to be in a jungle and a pack of bloodthirsty baboons are circling you, your blood is going to start pumping. You will begin to sweat and maybe even get a bit of nausea.

Not only that, some amount of anxiety helpful. If a speeding car is flying down the street and you have to get the kids in the house, adrenaline helps. Or even if you are getting ready for the “big game,” butterflies are a form of anxiety that means our bodies are getting ready to perform at its best.

But what about when it is not so good? Many people with substance use disorders or who are living in recovery have extreme amounts of anxiety, and this causes quite a few problems.

Doing Harm

Anxiety becomes something that does more harm than good when it tells us we are in a dangerous situation, and it’s not true. It causes us to avoid people, situations, and environments, that might even be good for us. It could even occur in normal day-to-day circumstances.

Of course, the “danger response” feels very real to a person experiencing anxiety, and they will usually look for a way to get rid of the symptoms—sometimes temporarily treating them with alcohol or drugs. This may help them feel better short-term, but the long-term negative effects are never worth it.

How a Breathing Exercise for Addiction Helps

The stress response that occurs when a person gets anxious means a rapid heartbeat, tense muscles, shallow breathing, and more. In fact, one of the most distinguishing aspects of a panic attack or extreme anxiety is the irregular breathing.

Breathing is so ingrained in our stress response that deep, controlled breathing automatically induces relaxation. A person cannot be in a state of panic and breathe slowly at the same time. It’s like sneezing with your eyes open.

As well, an added benefit of deep breathing to placate anxiety is that it gives your brain’s thought processes an outlet. Taking your mind off of what ever brought about your anxiety is a good way to naturally handle the ramifications of overthinking.

Since intentional deep breathing can put your body into the relaxed state free from anxiety, a personal breathing exercise for addiction is an essential tool for a person with substance use disorder. You can use different times for your breathing exercise for addiction, but we are going to show the 6-7-8 approach. It is simple, fast, and very effective.

How to Do It

  1. Sit down. Feet flat on the ground, back straight (you can do this lying down too).
  2. Let all the air out of your lungs through your mouth.
  3. Close your mouth and inhale through your nose for a count of 4
  4. Hold your breath for a count of 7
  5. Exhale for a count of 8

Rinse and repeat, 4 times.

That’s it.

3 Steps:

Breathe in 4 seconds
Hold your breath 7 seconds
Breathe out for 8 seconds

Repeat 4 times.

Tips:

  • Keeping your hands relaxed, hold up one finger for each breath. Seems simple, but as you relax this is a helpful way for you to keep track of your progress.
  • Do this at least twice a day.
  • Make sure you are going slowly; however, the most important aspect is the 8-second exhale, so that the oxygenated blood can circulate.
  • Use it for anxiety relief
  • Use it to help curb cravings. When you get a craving, before you act on it, do the breathing exercise.
  • To fully get the benefits of this technique you will need to make it a daily practice.

More:

If you are interested in this breathing exercise for addiction, you might be interested in how yoga is used in addiction recovery: “Yoga for Addiction Recovery.”

At SoCal Detox, we are intentional about engaging the whole person in their detoxification process. As well, we believe in finding the right program that continues this holistic healing for the next step for all our residents. If you or your loved one are struggling with substance use disorder and looking for a safe, holistic approach to detox and recovery, please call us today: 888-590-0777.

4 ds for relapse prevention

The Four Ds for Relapse Prevention

Your story is uniquely your own. Everything that brought you to the place where you finally made the decision to find recovery is part of who you are. You have gone through heartache. You have been through massive internal struggle. There is no single story, but the elements are often the same. Destroyed or broken relationships. Physical decay. Financial catastrophe. Loss of employment. Education left in the dust. Loss of interest in all the things you once loved. Life losing its meaning away from the only thing you cared about anymore: drugs or alcohol.

Or worse, you have been on death’s door. Car accident. Overdose. Sitting in a jail cell wondering how you got to this place.

But you got out. You went to detox then residential treatment. Then the slow and steady transition back into society.

Please do not throw all of this away.

The work you have put into getting on the life-saving road of recovery is your momentum and your lifeline. Relapses do happen. And they can contribute to your overall recovery. But, really, it’s better to continue on without. Relapse is too dangerous. Too heartbreaking. You need a relapse prevention plan.

So here are the 4 Ds for relapse prevention for you to remember the next time a craving returns.

1. D – Delay

In the moment of a craving, you feel like you are on an inescapable train. You are trapped on it, and it feels like it’s going a hundred miles an hour. There is no way off—you are headed for a fix.

But remember. It’s not true. The train slows down. It even stops eventually. Twenty minutes. If you can make it 20 minutes, you are going to feel the difference. Just wait. Don’t act on your desire. Wait 20 minutes.

2. D – Distract

Those 20 minutes can certainly feel like 20 hours when you have intense cravings, so it’s a good idea to fill that time with something. Play a video game. Take a walk. Go for a swim. Do a workout. Work on a puzzle. Meditate. Drink a glass of water. Jump in the shower and let the water wash over you and keep you clean.

Have your favorite distraction ready and use it whenever you get the craving.

When you are in the midst of an intense craving, it feels like it will last forever. But cravings don’t. They go away. You can attest to this because you have made it through cravings before.

3. D – Deep Breathing

Again, in your recovery program, you hopefully learned some breathing techniques. Addiction is a brain sickness. Because it got rewired with drug or alcohol use, your brain tells you things that are not concurrent with what is actually true and what is best for you. Focusing on your breathing is a way to take control back. To bring you to a present moment and have the wherewithal to make real decisions based on commitment and practice and everything that matters in life.

4. D – De-catastrophize

Okay, here is the thing: recovery is possible. You can do it. Remember this. And repeat it. When the cravings get intense your brain will tell you that you will never be able to keep your sobriety. That recovery, for you, is a pipe dream. You are not alone in feeling that way. Just about every recovering addict has had that same thought pattern. Yet millions of people have succeeded in lasting recovery. Do not accept the lie that you won’t make it. Hold on to the truth that though things are tough, right now, they will get better. Just get through this moment. That’s all you need.

Cravings are temporary. They won’t feel that way in the moment, but they are. Once you have gotten through a few of them, you will be able to trust it.

As well, you never know when a craving might pop up. So make sure you have your relapse prevention plan in place. Have your distractions in place. Remember your breathing techniques. And continually remind yourself that you are on a journey. It’s tough, but it’s possible. And you can do it.

If you have never been through detox or recovery treatment, feel free to use the 4 Ds; however, addiction treatment and recovery is more than abstinence. There is deep behavioral and psychological work that needs to happen. As well it’s dangerous to quit drugs or alcohol without help.

If you have relapsed or are considering quitting for the first time, please call our addiction specialists at SoCal Detox. We are ready to give you the best advice for your next step of your successful journey to recovery.

Call now, 888-590-0777.

yoga for addiction recovery

Yoga for Addiction Recovery At SoCal Detox

SoCal Detox is unique in its mission and ability to offer more treatment programs than the typical detox facility. In addition to our premium medical detox and highly supervised around-the-clock care, we have such clinical treatments as psycho-educational groups, mindfulness/guided meditation, anxiety management, 12 Step education, gratitude, goal setting, and so much more. However, above and beyond those options we employ other holistic programs to help residents fully engage with the recovery process. These include music therapies (Rock to Recovery), equine therapy, and Yoga for addiction recovery, among others.

One of the reasons we offer so much at a detox facility is to give the most solid first step to anyone who has trusted us with their health and safety. Ultimately, the safest path for a person with a substance abuse disorder is a clean one. This is the reason we make use of Yoga. The discipline and structure found in yoga can reinforce all of the treatments and offers a healthy way for recovering addicts to introduce movement, discipline, spirituality, and health back into their lives.

SoCal Detox’s Yoga for Addiction Recovery Overview

Yoga is learning to still the fluctuations of the mind and find the beauty of the present moment, which ultimately helps people find inner peace and serenity. It is a form of meditation. The development of yoga can be traced back to over 5,000 years ago, but some researchers think that yoga may be up to 10,000 years old.

It’s a practice that includes breathing techniques, meditation, and specific postures/stretches to connect the mind, body, and spirit. Yoga is widely practiced for health, wellness, and relaxation all of which promote presence, self-love, and focus. In addition to all of that, it has proven very effective for addiction recovery, and to combat stress, anxiety, and depression.

Physical Effects

The stretches help to open the body so that one can sit comfortably to access the deeper dimensions of Yoga. It also helps create space where people are stuck or tense and unveil the layers of protection people have built around their hearts. The poses and postures help with cognitive abilities, lower blood pressure, lower body weight, improve lung capacity, increase flexibility, reduce pain, and much more. The list of benefits seems to be tailored specifically for a person learning to walk the path of recovery.

The Why of Yoga Therapy

To appreciate and honor our bodies, as well as become aware of the mind and the noise it creates, yoga is a natural remedy. It helps us make peace with who we are and create inner and outer peace. The goal in our yoga for addiction program is for residents to find self-love so they can truly love life and others. Through this meditation, they gain self-awareness, courage, wisdom, serenity, and develop healthy routines and coping skills in sobriety.

The Activity of Yoga

Residents participate in 90-minute sessions of Mindful Yoga/Yoga Therapy, including breathing exercises (pranayama), meditation (dhyana), stretching poses (asana), sound healing, essential oils, and Reiki. The main focuses are on connection, presence, letting go, and gratitude.

Benefits

The physical benefits of yoga are numerous; however, the mental effects are particularly helpful in addiction treatment. The early stages of recovery bring thoughts and emotions that may seem out of control. The breathing, discipline, mindfulness, and inner peace found in practicing yoga for addiction help them find the strength and ability to keep control and keep their inner world from overwhelming the outer one.

Who Can Participate?

Every client who walks into SoCal Detox can join our yoga program. Our instructor is gifted in finding the right fit for every person who joins the group. The movements are relatively accessible to participants. Because of the unique approach and connection to the process of detox and sobriety, our yoga for addiction recovery program will even feel new to someone familiar with the practices. It is yoga with the usual results designed for a specific purpose.

Recovery

Traditional approaches to addiction treatment that include group and individual therapies are vastly important to recovery. This is why SoCal Detox specializes in them. However, to ignore the rest of the body is a mistake. When all aspects of an individual are included in the treatment process, the results are wider reaching and have deeper effects.

Our yoga program is just one of the many ways we take the complete individual into account for finding lasting recovery. As well, the teams we work with after detox treatment are committed to similar approaches to holistic healing. We would love to help you find peace, serenity, and long-term sobriety. If you are ready to make a change, call us today: 888-590-0777.

Addiction Alert: What Are Bath Salts?

What Are Bath Salts?

We have to start this whole thing off with the khat plant. It’s a small shrub that grows in eastern Africa and southern Arabia near the Red Sea. In the mostly agrarian setting, it’s common, even popular for folks to chew the leaves—a social custom going back thousands of years.

The experience induced from this is a sense of euphoria and stimulation. The new drug commonly called “bath salts” is created to mimic (and enhance) the effects of the khat plant. So no. When someone struggling with substance abuse mentions bath salt, they are not referring to the designer Epsom salts you find at boutique shops downtown.

The non-street term is synthetic cathinone and methylenedioxypyrovalerone (MDPV). Big words that basically mean the drug known as bath salts is a derivative of the khat plant and made in a “lab” (not naturally extracted from a plant). They get a person high and they have a high potential for overdose among other dangers.

This cheap, addictive, and potentially deadly substance looks a lot like the soaking salts. Hence the street name.

Quick Reference Guide to Bath Salts

Bath Salts are manmade chemicals that get people high, created to mimic the chemical effect of a plant in Africa. Often used as a cheap substitute for meth and coke, two other stimulants.

Why are they called bath salts?

If you are familiar with common bath salts (the ones you put in the bath tub) you know that they are small crystals. Well, once a synthetic cathinone is cooked up, guess what it looks like? Bath salts (small crystals usually white or brownish in color).

Are They Legal?

Technically, no. However, the family of drugs bath salts belongs to are being referred to as “new psychoactive substances” (NPS). Because they are “new,” they had a stint where they could be purchased in convenience stores or gas stations. However, in 2012 the chemicals found in bath salts were placed on the Schedule I controlled substances list.

Since they are synthetic, manufacturers are likely going to avoid this by creating substances with similar effects under different names. Like what happened this case: “After mephedrone was banned … a chemical called naphyrone quickly replaced it and is now being sold as “jewelry cleaner” under the brand name ‘Cosmic Blast’ (source).

How do people consume them?

Inhalation, snorting, huffing, injecting, or smoking. Bath salts affect the brain in a way that creates dopamine (the pleasure chemical). Users have reported that the drugs trigger intense cravings—uncontrollable urges to use the drug again.

Other street names:
Bliss, Bloom, Blue Silk, Charge Plus, Cloud Nine, Drone, Energy-1, Flakka, Hurricane Charlie, Ivory Wave, Lunar Wave, Meow Meow, Ocean Burst, Ocean Snow, Plant Fertilizer, Plant Food, Pure Ivory, Purple Sky, Purple Wave, Red Dove, Scarface, Sextasy, Snow Leopard, Stardust, Vanilla Sky, White Dove, White Lightening, White Night, White Rush, Zoom.

Recovery Topics

Bath salts are sometimes seen as an experiment. Something to try because it works, and it’s available. However, they are addictive, and they are dangerous.

Someone who is looking to get high on bath salts is on a path of self-destruction. One that cares little for detrimental effects on life and can only see the immediate benefit of a moment of pleasure. This is an essential addiction trait. The deeper issue is, of course, that the addict feels the deep need to separate from their current life. They must erase the pain they feel, and they will do whatever they can to make that happen.

The truth: Using bath salts to escape the world will end up in tragedy.

If you are caught in the desperate struggle, looking for a fix to cover your life, or you know someone who is experiencing these classic symptoms of addiction and substance abuse, please call us today. Our specialists want to hear your story and find a way to get you the right help that will bring about lasting transformation.

Call us today, 888-590-0777.

Are you wondering if a drug detox is necessary for you or your loved one? Here are some answers as to whys and hows of detox: Drug Detox in San Clemente, California.

Dangers of a Do it yourself detox

Dangers of a Do-it-yourself Detox

As you might have figured out, no single style of addiction treatment works for everyone. You might be the type of person who responds well to equine therapy (horses), to group work, to wilderness treatment, EMDR, 12-step, Rock to Recovery—each individual needs to work with a team to find the treatment approach that works for their personal orientation. When it comes to detox, getting the drugs and poison out of your system, the options are a fewer. But there is one thing that is universally agreed upon (even by the FDA): a do-it-yourself detox is not only a bad idea, it is dangerous.

Detox Basics

Before deeper psychological recovery and behavioral treatment found in a rehab or an IOP is even an option, the immediate physical addition has to be brought under control. Because an addict’s body has begun to depend on addictive substances, when the drugs are taken away, their body will go through withdrawals. These are typically pretty uncomfortable. They manifest in physical symptoms that range from shivering to seizures (and just about everything in-between). Detox gets you through that process, which typically takes about a week.

At SoCal Detox our program alleviates the withdrawal symptoms with professional care and our specialized program puts you in the right space for long-term healing.

The Do-it-yourself Detox Options

There are quite a few kits in existence that try to sell a person with a substance abuse problem on the possibility of detoxing themselves. Some of these are actually dangerous in and of themselves. In fact, before we go on, we need to be very clear, detoxing on your own is dangerous and potentially life-threatening.

However, people considering doing it themselves often believe a few things that make them think it’s a good idea. They think it will be cheaper. Or they are intimidated by the idea of a detox, so they hope being home with their friends close by and their music, movie, or video game collection to distract them will help them get through it. While some of those things sound like pretty good reasons to try a do-it-yourself detox, there are too many downsides.

The Down Sides

First off, as comfortable as your home is, it is also the place you have been the getting high. You know where your stash is, and your dealer knows how to find you. Your buddy might even show up unannounced with your substance of choice. That kind of temptation at the moment when you are most vulnerable is almost always too much for an addict to handle. As well, home life is pretty good, but it also has its stressors—job, family, school—difficulty with any of these could cause you to give up on the whole process.

Most of all, if you try to detox at home, there is no medical supervision. Even if you try to taper off your substances, you are going to be enduring dangerous and painful withdrawal effects. As well, withdrawal-related emergencies occur on a regular basis. It is one of the ugly realities of drug addiction: getting clean is dangerous. Medical supervision alleviates these dangers and the pain involved.

The Biggest Issue With Do-it-yourself Detox

These are all big issues. But one that affects even more than your immediate safety is this: where is your brain? Recovery is a serious decision about some serious business. This is your life we are talking about. It is your health, your relationships with your family, your spouse, your friends; it is your job and your ability to sustain a livelihood—basically, everything important in life is affected by your decision to get clean. Your brain needs to get around this fact.

Don’t shortchange detox or recovery. There are some things you can skimp on in life, but getting clean is not one of them. You can be unsure and have fears and doubts. But if you are going to find transformation in your life, if you are going to try anything, you owe it to yourself to do it right.

Making the Difference

Do-it-yourself seems to be an attractive option. However, going to an inpatient medical detox makes all the difference. There you will get individualized attention, meds to help you handle the withdrawals, and best of all, professional guidance.

Here at SoCal Detox we are committed to you for every step of the recovery process. Here is some more information on our programs for after you made it through the detox process: Aftercare and Residential Stabilization With SoCal Detox.

What if I am a social drinker? Even if you believe you can detox safely because you don’t have “that bad of a problem,” you might be putting yourself at risk by trying to quit alone. When in doubt, the safest approach is to talk with a professional and get detox help.

If you or your loved one has considered detox of any kind (do-it-yourself detox or medically assisted), please call us today. Our experienced team will be happy to chat with you about all your options: 888-590-0777.