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Author: Emily Rowe, LMSW

Emily Rowe is the Clinical Director at Inner Voyage Recovery Center. She is a Licensed Master of Social Work with 8 years of experience in clinical settings covering one on one sessions, family sessions, group sessions, crisis interventions and suicidal prevention. Recognized by leadership and colleagues as forward thinking, creative, empathetic, active listener and effective.

Are Alcohol Withdrawal Tremors Normal?

Alcohol withdrawal tremors are among a variety of unpleasant symptoms that may occur when a person who has become addicted to alcohol abruptly stops drinking. Alcohol withdrawal can be extremely difficult – and in some cases, it can also be dangerous. But when you get proper professional help, you can complete this process with your health intact and take an important step toward an alcohol-free future.

What Are Alcohol Withdrawal Tremors?

When you struggle with alcohol addiction, your body adapts to the presence of this drug in your system. This is why, as your addiction progresses, you will find that you need to drink more in order to experience the effects that you previously achieved much quicker. (This is known as developing tolerance.)

The way your body adapts to the presence of alcohol also affects what happens to you when you try to quit drinking, or when you are prevented from acquiring and using alcohol. In these circumstances, your body may react with a variety of unpleasant physical and psychological symptoms. This is known as withdrawal. 

Shakiness or trembling – which are also referred to as alcohol withdrawal tremors – are common symptoms among people who are trying to quit drinking after an extended period of compulsive alcohol use. Depending on the nature and severity of your past alcohol abuse, you may begin to experience alcohol withdrawal tremors within six to 12 hours after your last drink. 

Though alcohol withdrawal tremors are fairly common, they can vary significantly from one person to the next. Some people have moderate tremors, some have more severe shaking, and some don’t experience any alcohol withdrawal tremors at all.

Symptoms of Alcohol Withdrawal

Even if you don’t experience alcohol withdrawal tremors, the process of ridding your body of alcohol can still be quite distressing. The following are examples of other common symptoms of alcohol withdrawal:

  • Intense cravings for alcohol
  • Anxiety, agitation, and irritability
  • Depression
  • Excessive perspiration
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Powerful headaches

In severe cases, people who have been drinking heavily for an extended period of time may experience a condition that’s known as delirium tremens (or the DTs).  

It is important to understand the DTs are not the same thing as alcohol withdrawal tremors. The DTs are a potentially life-threatening set of symptoms that can include:

  • Dangerously elevated heart rate
  • Elevated body temperature
  • Psychomotor agitation
  • Severe disorientation
  • Hallucinations
  • Seizure

The DTs typically begin about 48 hours after a person’s last drink, and they can last for as long as five days. According to an August 2022 article, experts estimate that 37% of people who develop the DTs would die if they didn’t receive effective treatment. 

The Benefits of Detox for Alcohol Withdrawal Tremors

As we noted earlier, alcohol withdrawal tremors and other common symptoms of alcohol withdrawal can be sources of considerable distress, especially when a person tries to get through this experience without seeking professional care. 

However, when a person enters a detoxification, or detox, program, they can complete alcohol withdrawal safely and with minimized discomfort.

Here are a few of the many beneficial features of detox:

  • Alcohol-free environment: If you try to get through alcohol withdrawal on your own, the tremors, cravings, and other symptoms can quickly become overwhelming. If you have easy access to alcohol, it may be virtually impossible to suppress your urges and endure the distress that you know can be alleviated by drinking again. While you’re in detox, that temptation will be removed.
  • Experienced professionals: The pain of alcohol withdrawal can be exacerbated by fear of the unknown. How bad will your symptoms become? How long will they last? Can these symptoms jeopardize your health or even endanger your life? When you’re in detox, you will be under the care of experienced professionals who are familiar with all aspects of the recovery process and prepared for any contingency that may arrive.
  • Medication and therapy: Depending on the nature and severity of your alcohol withdrawal symptoms, the detox professionals who care for you may provide both medical and therapeutic support. Certain prescription medications can keep you safe and ease some symptoms. Various forms of therapy can help you manage other symptoms and prepare for successful, long-term recovery. 
  • Success and hope: When you are in the depths of untreated addiction, you may begin to believe that you are beyond help. Completing detox can be a significant accomplishment. It can also be evidence that you are capable of more than you may have realized. The sense of success and hope that you experience when you complete a detoxification program can be a source of both inspiration and motivation as you work to progress in your recovery. 

Find Help for Alcohol Addiction in Atlanta, GA

If you have been struggling with an addiction to alcohol, Inner Voyage Recovery Center is here to help. Our alcoholism treatment center near Atlanta, Georgia, provides life-changing detox services as well as multiple levels of outpatient care. Every step of the way, you can expect to receive customized care and comprehensive support from a team of dedicated professionals. Don’t let untreated alcoholism rob you of one more day. To learn more about our programs and services, or to schedule your free assessment, visit our admissions page or call us today.

The Dangers of Mixing Adderall & Alcohol

Adderall is a common prescription medication that offers life-improving benefits to certain people. Alcohol is a recreational substance that is used safely and moderately by many adults. But if a person combines the two, the dangers of mixing adderall and alcohol be catastrophic. 

What Is Adderall?

Adderall is a prescription medication that contains amphetamine and dextroamphetamine, both of which are stimulants. Adderall is typically used to treat people who have attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). It is also often prescribed to people who are suffering from narcolepsy.

Adderall’s ability to enhance focus, concentration, and attention has also prompted many people to abuse it for performance-enhancing purposes. This type of Adderall abuse is popular among students and some professionals who may feel that they need a cognitive boost to prepare for a test or complete a complex project.

Adderall may also be abused for recreational purposes. As a central nervous system stimulant, Adderall is in the same category as amphetamine, methamphetamine, and cocaine. People who abuse Adderall as a recreational drug may do so to stay awake for extended periods of time or to counteract the effects of depressants such as alcohol. 

Anyone who uses Adderall without a prescription (and without following the directions of a qualified physician) puts themselves at risk for myriad negative outcomes. As we will discuss in a later section, when a person abuses Adderall and alcohol at the same time, the likelihood that they will experience physical or psychological problems may increase significantly.  

Signs of Adderall & Alcohol Abuse

Adderall and alcohol have different effects on a person’s body and mind. The following signs may indicate that a person has been abusing them.

Signs of Adderall Abuse

People who abuse Adderall may exhibit symptoms such as the following:

  • Heightened sense of concentration and attention
  • Increased ability to remain focused on a task
  • Elevated energy levels
  • Speaking more rapidly than usual
  • Appearing to be nervous, anxious, or jittery
  • Becoming agitated or irritated when unable to acquire or use Adderall
  • Trying to borrow or steal Adderall that was prescribed to someone else
  • Purchasing Adderall without a prescription from illicit online or offline sources

Signs of Alcohol Abuse

Initially, alcohol abuse can have a stimulating effect on a person’s behavior. But this substance will eventually depress a person’s ability to perform basic cognitive or physical functions. People who have been abusing alcohol may exhibit signs such as the following:

  • Diminished inhibitions
  • Acting with uncharacteristic recklessness
  • Slurred speech
  • Difficult following conversations
  • Impaired coordination
  • Loss of balance
  • Poor judgment
  • Memory loss

Dangers of Mixing Adderall & Alcohol

Adderall and alcohol share several features. For example:

  • In the United States, Adderall and alcohol are both legal substances for people who meet certain criteria
  • Adderall and alcohol are both extremely common.
  • Some people are able to use Adderall and alcohol safely, separately, and in moderation
  • Adderall and alcohol both have the potential for abuse and addiction. 

When substances are legal to use and/or commonly prescribed, many people mistakenly believe that they do not pose a risk of harm. The truth is that virtually every drug or medication can be dangerous when it is used improperly. In the case of prescription medications, improper use includes combining the drug with alcohol or other substances. 

When a person abuses Adderall and alcohol at the same time, or within a short period of time, they may expose themselves to several dangers. The more frequently they engage in this behavior, the greater their risk can become. Potential dangers of mixing Adderall and alcohol include the following:

  • Elevated body temperature
  • Accelerated heart rate and blood pressure
  • Confusion and disorientation
  • Increased risk of being victimized
  • Physical injuries due to recklessness, impaired coordination, and/or poor judgment
  • Development of addiction to one or both substances
  • Being arrested and incarcerated
  • Conflicts with loved ones, which may lead to lost relationships
  • Onset or worsening of mental health concerns
  • Substandard performance in school or at work
  • Academic failure and job loss
  • Accidental death

Treatment Options for Addictions to Adderall & Alcohol

Addiction can be treated. With proper professional care, a person can stop using these substances, learn how to regain control of their behaviors, and resist future urges to abuse Adderall and alcohol.

When people enter treatment for addictions to Adderall or alcohol, one of the most important first decisions is determining which level of care is right for them. Many people benefit from spending time in one or both of the following outpatient levels:

Depending on the scope of each person’s needs, their treatment history, and which program they are participating in, treatment for addictions may include elements such as the following:

Begin Treatment for Adderall or Alcohol Addiction in Atlanta, Georgia

If your life has been disrupted by a compulsion to abuse Adderall and/or alcohol, please know that you are not alone. At Inner Voyage Recovery Center, a team of experienced and dedicated professionals is ready to help you achieve the healthier and more hopeful future that you deserve. 

Our addiction treatment center in Georgia is a safe and respectful place where every person receives customized care and comprehensive support. To learn more about our programs and services, or to schedule a free assessment, please visit our Admissions page or call us today.

How to Help an Alcoholic Spouse

Alcoholism is a challenging issue that affects not only the individual but also their loved ones. Living with an alcoholic spouse can be challenging and may cause significant stress and emotional pain. If you or someone you know is struggling to help an alcoholic spouse, you’re not alone. At Inner Voyage Recovery, we understand the challenges of living with an alcoholic spouse, and we have created this informative guide to help you on how to help them.

Signs of Alcoholism in a Spouse

Recognizing the signs of alcoholism in a spouse is the first step in getting help. Some common signs of alcoholism in a spouse may include:

  • Drinking alone or in secret
  • Drinking in the morning or throughout the day
  • Neglecting responsibilities at work or home
  • Drinking to cope with stress or emotional pain
  • Blacking out or forgetting events
  • Becoming defensive or angry when confronted about their drinking
  • Physical symptoms such as tremors or shakes

How Can You Help an Alcoholic Spouse?

Helping an alcoholic spouse can be challenging, but it’s essential to encourage them to seek professional help. Here are some steps you can take to help an alcoholic spouse:

  1. Express Your Concern

Expressing your concern to your spouse about their drinking can be challenging, but it’s essential to do so in a caring and supportive manner. Avoid criticizing or blaming your spouse, and focus on how their drinking is affecting you and your relationship.

  1. Encourage Them to Seek Professional Help

Encourage your spouse to seek professional help. Inner Voyage Recovery offers a range of addiction treatment programs, including a Partial Hospitalization Program, an Intensive Outpatient Program, and Outpatient Programs. Our team of addiction specialists can provide the support and guidance needed to overcome addiction and maintain long-term sobriety.

  1. Support Them During Treatment

Supporting your spouse during treatment can be a crucial aspect of their recovery. Attend family therapy sessions, encourage them to participate in support groups, and create a supportive home environment.

Effects of Living With an Alcoholic Spouse or Partner

Living with an alcoholic spouse or partner can have significant effects on your physical, emotional, and mental health. Here are some of the most common effects of living with an alcoholic spouse:

  1. Increased Stress and Anxiety

Living with an alcoholic spouse can be incredibly stressful, as you may never know when they will become intoxicated or how they will behave. This uncertainty can cause anxiety and fear, leading to chronic stress and other negative health effects.

  1. Emotional and Physical Exhaustion

Living with an alcoholic spouse can be emotionally and physically exhausting. You may find yourself constantly worrying about your spouse, trying to cover up their behavior, or dealing with the aftermath of their drinking. This can lead to feelings of exhaustion, burnout, and even physical health problems.

  1. Increased Risk of Domestic Violence

Alcoholism and domestic violence are often linked, as alcohol can lower inhibitions and increase aggression. Living with an alcoholic spouse can increase your risk of experiencing domestic violence, which can have long-lasting physical and emotional effects.

  1. Financial Problems

Alcoholism can be a costly addiction, and living with an alcoholic spouse can lead to financial problems. Your spouse may spend money on alcohol instead of paying bills, leading to financial stress and instability.

  1. Relationship Issues and Breakdowns

Living with an alcoholic spouse can take a significant toll on your relationship. You may feel distant, disconnected, or resentful toward your spouse, which can lead to relationship issues and even breakdowns.

If you are living with an alcoholic spouse, it’s important to prioritize your own physical, emotional, and mental health. 

How to Deal With an Alcoholic Spouse that Doesn’t Want Help

Dealing with an alcoholic spouse who doesn’t want help can be challenging, but there are steps you can take to encourage them to seek treatment. Consider staging an intervention, seeking the help of a professional interventionist, or attending a support group for spouses of alcoholics.

Support Groups for Spouses of Alcoholics

Support groups for spouses of alcoholics provide a safe and supportive environment for individuals to share their experiences and gain support from others who are going through similar struggles. These groups offer a space for spouses to share their emotions, frustrations, and concerns related to their partner’s alcoholism.

Support groups can also offer valuable information and resources on how to deal with a spouse’s alcoholism. Members of support groups can share their personal experiences and offer advice on how to handle challenging situations, such as how to talk to a spouse about their drinking or how to deal with the aftermath of an alcohol-related incident.

Two of the most popular support groups for spouses of alcoholics are Al-Anon and Nar-Anon. Al-Anon is a support group for friends and family members of alcoholics, while Nar-Anon is a support group for friends and family members of individuals struggling with drug addiction. Both groups use the 12-step approach, similar to Alcoholics Anonymous and other addiction recovery groups.

In these support groups, members are encouraged to share their experiences and emotions, with an emphasis on mutual support, encouragement, and understanding. Members are also encouraged to focus on their own recovery and personal growth rather than solely on the alcoholic spouse.

Support groups can be a valuable resource for spouses of alcoholics, as they provide a sense of community and support. They can also help alleviate feelings of isolation and provide a non-judgmental space to share personal struggles and emotions.

Alcoholism Treatment in Atlanta, GA

If you or someone you know is struggling with alcoholism, Inner Voyage Recovery can help. We offer a range of addiction treatment programs that are tailored to meet individual needs. Our team of addiction specialists can provide the support and guidance needed to overcome addiction and maintain long-term sobriety. Give us a call or visit our admissions page to learn more about how we can help you or your loved one overcome alcoholism.

Can Narcan Be Used for Alcohol?

Alcohol is one of the most commonly abused substances in the United States, with many individuals struggling with alcohol addiction. Unfortunately, alcohol overdose is a serious concern that can result in coma or even death. Fortunately, there is a medication called Narcan that is used to reverse opioid overdoses. In recent years, there has been discussion about whether Narcan can also be used to treat alcohol overdose. This page will explore the use of Narcan for alcohol and its potential benefits.

What is Narcan?

Narcan is a medication that is also known as naloxone. It is used to reverse the effects of an opioid overdose, which can be life-threatening. Narcan works by blocking the effects of opioids in the brain and can quickly reverse the symptoms of an overdose, including slowed or stopped breathing.

Narcan is available in several forms, including a nasal spray and an injection. The nasal spray is easy to use and can be administered by anyone, even if they have no medical training. The injection is typically administered by medical professionals.

It is important to note that Narcan is not a substitute for medical treatment and should not be relied upon as the sole form of treatment for opioid addiction.

What Does Narcan Do?

Narcan works by binding to the same receptors in the brain as opioids. Instead of producing a euphoric effect, it blocks the opioids from binding and reverses the respiratory depression caused by the overdose.

Narcan can be administered through several different routes, including injection, nasal spray, or auto-injector. The nasal spray and auto-injector forms of Narcan are easy to use and do not require any medical training, making it more accessible for family members or friends of someone who may be at risk of an overdose.

Overall, Narcan is an effective medication for reversing opioid overdoses and has saved countless lives. It is a valuable tool in preventing overdose deaths and promoting harm reduction in communities affected by the opioid epidemic.

Can Narcan Be Used for Alcohol Overdose?

While Narcan is used to treat opioid overdoses, it is not effective in treating alcohol overdoses. Alcohol overdose occurs when a person drinks more alcohol than their body can handle, leading to symptoms such as vomiting, seizures, and difficulty breathing. Unlike opioids, alcohol does not bind to the same receptors in the brain as opioids, which means that Narcan is ineffective in treating alcohol overdose.

Although Narcan may not be effective for alcohol overdose, there are other treatments available for alcohol addiction and overdose. Seeking medical attention and professional treatment is crucial for those struggling with alcohol misuse or dependence.

Narcan Side Effects

While Narcan is a relatively safe drug, there are still potential side effects that users should be aware of. The most common side effects of Narcan include the following:

  1. Nausea and vomiting: Some people who receive Narcan may experience nausea and vomiting shortly after administration. This is typically a short-lived side effect that goes away on its own.
  2. Agitation: Narcan can cause some people to feel agitated or restless. This is especially true if they are experiencing opioid withdrawal symptoms at the same time.
  3. Headache: Some people may experience a headache after receiving Narcan. This is also a side effect that is usually mild and goes away quickly.
  4. Rapid heartbeat: Narcan can cause a rapid or irregular heartbeat in some people. This side effect does not have a long duration and goes away on its own.
  5. Sweating: Some people may experience sweating after receiving Narcan. This is another temporary and normal response to the medication.

It is important to note that Narcan is generally safe and well-tolerated. Most people who receive Narcan do not experience any significant side effects.

Benefits of Narcan

Despite its limited use in treating alcohol overdose, Narcan has many benefits when it comes to treating opioid overdoses. It is a safe and effective medication that can quickly reverse the effects of an overdose and save lives. Narcan can be administered by trained professionals, including emergency medical technicians and police officers. In some states, Narcan is available over the counter without a prescription, making it more accessible to individuals who may be at risk of overdose.

How to Get Narcan

If you or someone you know is at risk of opioid overdose, it is important to have Narcan on hand. Narcan can be obtained through a prescription from a healthcare provider, or in some states, it can be obtained over the counter without a prescription. Many addiction treatment centers also provide Narcan to their clients as part of their harm reduction efforts.

Contact Our Drug & Alcohol Treatment Center in Atlanta, GA

If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction to drugs or alcohol, Inner Voyage Recovery in Atlanta, Georgia, is here to help. Our compassionate team of professionals offers a range of evidence-based treatments, including detox, residential treatment, and outpatient programs. Contact us today to learn more about our comprehensive approach to addiction treatment.

Signs & Symptoms of High-Functioning Alcoholism

Untreated alcoholism can rob a person of the ability to moderate their behaviors. But some people who struggle with an addiction to alcohol retain a modicum of control and stability. People who do this are often said to have high-functioning alcoholism.

The Difference Between Alcoholism & High-Functioning Alcoholism

To determine if someone meets the criteria for alcoholism or another form of addiction, most clinicians in the United States refer to the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorder (DSM-5). This reference book includes the following criteria for a diagnosis of alcohol use disorder (which is the clinical term for alcoholism):

  • Having powerful cravings for alcohol
  • Spending significant amounts of time acquiring and using alcohol, as well as recovering from the effects of alcohol abuse
  • Drinking more (or more often) than originally intended
  • Failing to meet personal, academic, or occupational responsibilities due to ongoing alcohol use
  • No longer participating in hobbies, social activities, or recreational pursuits because of continued alcohol use
  • Using alcohol in ways or circumstances that are clearly hazardous, such as mixing alcohol with prescription pills or other drugs
  • Continuing to drink even after incurring physical and/or psychological damage that can be attributed to prior alcohol abuse
  • Continuing to drink even after prior alcohol use has disrupted relationships with friends, family members, colleagues, and romantic partners
  • Developing tolerance, or needing to consume greater amounts of alcohol to achieve the intoxicating effects that previously occurred after just a few drinks
  • Experiencing withdrawal symptoms, which can include both physical and psychological distress, when unable to drink or after abruptly attempting to stop drinking 
  • Wanting to either quit drinking or reduce the amount and frequency of one’s alcohol use, trying to accomplish these goals, but being unable to do so

According to the DSM-5, a person only needs to meet two of the criteria listed above to be diagnosed with an addiction to alcohol

People who meet fewer than five of these criteria are often described as having mild or moderate alcohol use disorder. Depending on which criteria a person meets, and how severely they are affected, individuals who have mild or moderate alcohol use disorder may also be referred to as having high-functioning alcoholism.

The term high-functioning alcoholism is not included as either a diagnosis or a qualifier in the DSM-5, but it is still often used by clinicians, addiction counselors, and other experts to provide a general description of how a person has been impacted by compulsive alcohol abuse.

Signs & Symptoms of High-Functioning Alcoholism

A person who has high-functioning alcoholism may only have a few symptoms. Also, they may go to great lengths to hide these symptoms from friends, family members, and colleagues. This means that it can be extremely difficult to tell if someone in your life has this form of addiction.

If you suspect that someone you know may have developed high-functioning alcoholism, you may want to keep an eye out for the following signs and symptoms:

  • They claim that they think more clearly and function better when they’ve had a few drinks.
  • They often drink at home before they go out.
  • They have a habit of stopping at a bar or liquor store on the way home from work just about every day.
  • They don’t seem to be able to have fun without drinking.
  • You have noticed sudden, significant changes in their mindset, motivation, and activity level at apparently random times throughout the day.
  • You have noticed distinct differences in their personality depending on if they have or have not been drinking. 
  • They joke or brag about how much they drink.
  • They use alcohol to reward themselves for successes.
  • You have smelled alcohol on their breath early in the day, while they are at work, or at other times when they should not have been drinking.

Someone who exhibits these types of signs and symptoms may be in crisis and should seek professional care. Thankfully, high-functioning alcoholism is a treatable condition. In many cases, outpatient treatment can be the start of the path toward an alcohol-free future.

Outpatient Treatment for High-Functioning Alcoholism

Inner Voyage Recovery Center offers three levels of outpatient care for individuals who have been living with high-functioning alcoholism. Depending on the nature and severity of your struggles with alcohol abuse, you may benefit from receiving services at one or more of the following levels:

  • Partial hospitalization program (PHP)
  • Intensive outpatient program (IOP)
  • Outpatient rehab

Within these levels of care, you may participate in the following types of therapies and services:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)
  • Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)
  • Individual therapy
  • Group therapy
  • Family programming
  • Adventure therapy
  • Trauma therapy

Find Treatment for Alcoholism in Atlanta, GA

Inner Voyage Recovery Center is a trusted source of personalized outpatient treatment for adults who have developed high-functioning alcoholism and other forms of addiction. When you choose to begin your recovery journey at our treatment center near Atlanta, Georgia, you can receive quality care from a team of skilled and compassionate professionals. 

With our help, you can overcome the constraints of high-functioning alcoholism, regain control of your behavior, and start living a much healthier and more authentic life. To learn more about our programs and services, or to schedule a free assessment, please either visit our admissions page or call us today.

What Is a High-Functioning Alcoholic?

TV shows and movies often portray people with drinking problems as confused, disheveled, and incapable of getting through the day without embarrassing themselves and their loved ones. While some people sadly conform to this unfortunate stereotype, others are able to hide the evidence of their alcohol abuse and live what appears to be a productive and satisfying life. These individuals are often referred to as high-functioning alcoholics.

What Is a High-Functioning Alcoholic?

Before we delve into this topic, it is important to clarify that “high-functioning alcoholic” is not a clinical term. It is a casual way to describe someone who appears to have avoided the more devastating effects of alcohol addiction.

The fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) includes 11 criteria for alcohol use disorder (which is how mental and behavioral health professionals refer to alcoholism). However, in order to be accurately diagnosed with this condition, a person only has to meet two of these criteria during a 12-month period.

The diagnosis of alcohol use disorder can be subdivided into three categories based on how many DSM-5 criteria a person meets:

  • Mild: Two or three criteria
  • Moderate: Four or five criteria
  • Severe: Six or more criteria

If a person has a mild or moderate alcohol use disorder, they may be able to retain some semblance of control over their lives even as they struggle with the compulsion to drink more (and more frequently) than is healthy. 

A high-functioning alcoholic may perform well in school, make steady progress in their career, and otherwise give the outward appearance of being a happy and successful person. Unbeknownst to others, though, these individuals may be putting their livelihoods (and their lives) at risk every day due to an uncontrollable urge to drink.

Signs of High-Functioning Alcoholism

The very nature of this condition makes it difficult to detect if someone is a high-functioning alcoholic. 

  • In typical cases of alcoholism, people exhibit signs such as slurred speech, impaired coordination, diminished cognition, frequent absenteeism from school or work, failure to meet personal or occupational responsibilities, and a clear inability to stop drinking.
  • In the case of a high-functioning alcoholic, they either don’t have some of the more obvious symptoms of alcohol use disorder or they have become skilled at hiding these symptoms from friends, family members, colleagues, and others with whom they regularly come into contact. 

However, this doesn’t mean that it is impossible to determine if someone that you know is a high-functioning alcoholic. Here are a few key indicators to keep an eye out for:

  • When they are socializing, they often have multiple drinks in a short period of time. 
  • They rarely or never have an alcohol-free lunch or dinner.
  • They have no hesitation about driving after they have been drinking.
  • They often “pregame,” or drink at home (alone or with others) before going to a bar, club, or event where they will continue to consume alcohol.
  • They claim that having a drink or two “loosens them up” or allows them to function more effectively.
  • They keep alcohol in their desk at work, in the glove box in their car, or in other places where this substance is not typically found.
  • They often exhibit sudden changes in mood, attitude, and energy.
  • They become agitated, irritated, or even angry when they are in situations where they cannot drink.
  • You suspect that they have been lying to you or others about how they spend their time and who they associate with.

Effects of High-Functioning Alcoholism

Outwardly, a high-functioning alcoholic may appear to be in control of their life. But regardless of what level of academic achievement, career advancement, or financial success they have attained, they remain at risk for negative effects such as the following:

  • Damage to the heart, liver, and kidneys
  • Cognitive deficits
  • Malnutrition
  • Conflicts in their relationships
  • Physical injuries due to slips, falls, automobile accidents, or violent outbursts
  • Legal problems such as being arrest for driving while intoxicated
  • Elevated risk for certain cancers
  • Development of anxiety, depression, or another co-occurring mental health concern
  • Polysubstance abuse
  • Job loss and long-term unemployment
  • Financial problems
  • Accidental death
  • Suicidal ideation

High-functioning alcoholics may drink as a means of numbing themselves to emotional pain that is related to poor stress management capabilities, self-doubt, a history of untreated trauma, or myriad other influences. The desire to keep their alcohol abuse a secret may prevent a person from getting help to address their addictive behaviors. This, in turn, means that they are also unlikely to seek treatment for their mental or emotional concerns.

It is not difficult to see how this can lead to a downward spiral of worsening mental health and increasingly more severe alcohol abuse. In the absence of effective professional treatment, a high-functioning alcoholic remains in perpetual jeopardy for devastating physical, emotional, and socioeconomic outcomes.

Begin Treatment for Alcohol Addiction in Atlanta

If you have been struggling with alcohol addiction, or if you believe that someone that you care about is a high-functioning alcoholic, please know that help is available. At Inner Voyage Recovery Center in Atlanta, Georgia, adults receive the personalized care they need to end their alcohol abuse and begin their journey toward successful recovery. 

Features of treatment at our center include detoxification, multiple outpatient programs, a variety of effective therapies, and unwavering support. When you’re ready to start living a healthier and more hopeful life, the Inner Voyage Recovery Center team is here for you. Visit our admissions page or call us today to learn more.

Alcohol Induced Psychosis Symptoms

The term “psychosis” often prompts thoughts of complex mental health concerns such as schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder. But alcohol abuse can also trigger the onset of psychotic episodes. If someone that you care about has been exhibiting alcohol-induced psychosis symptoms, they are in crisis and need immediate professional help.

What Is Alcohol Induced Psychosis?

Alcohol-induced psychosis, which is also sometimes referred to as alcohol-related psychosis, is a mental health concern that involves a series of distressing symptoms that disrupt a person’s ability to correctly perceive their environment and interact with others.

It is important to understand that alcohol-induced psychosis symptoms are not the same as the intoxicating effects that a person typically experiences when they drink alcohol. Alcohol-induced psychosis symptoms can be much more severe and cause significantly greater harm.

According to a 2015 review from The Netherlands, the lifetime prevalence of alcohol-induced psychosis among the general public is about 0.4%. However, among people who develop alcohol use disorder (which is the clinical term for alcohol addiction), the rate of alcohol-induced psychosis rises to 4%. This represents a tenfold increase in alcohol-induced psychosis between the general public and people who have become addicted to alcohol.

What Are the Symptoms of Alcohol Induced Psychosis?

The two main symptoms of alcohol-induced psychosis are hallucinations and delusions: 

  • Auditory hallucinations: This may include hearing voices or other sounds that do not exist. A person who develops auditory hallucinations may believe that the sounds are originating inside their own head or that they are coming from an external source.
  • Visual hallucinations: These can include seeing people, shapes, or patterns that are not actually there. Visual hallucinations are often associated with schizophrenia and psychedelic drugs, but they can also be symptomatic of alcohol-induced psychosis.
  • Delusions: This is a general category that can include a variety of firm, rigid beliefs that are easily disproven or that have no basis in reality. Examples of delusional thinking include believing that a person is being spied on, persecuted, or controlled by a government agency. A person who has delusions might also believe that they are in a romantic relationship with a famous person (who they have never actually met) or that they have certain special abilities or magical powers.

The following behaviors or characteristics may indicate that a person is experiencing symptoms of alcohol-induced psychosis:

  • Agitation and irritability
  • Claiming that someone is out to get them
  • Being unable to communicate clearly or engage in conversations
  • Intense fear or paranoia in the absence of any credible threat
  • Dramatic mood swings, including sudden outbursts of anger or violence
  • Confusion and disorientation
  • Poor self-care and lack of attention to personal hygiene

Who Is at Risk for Alcohol Induced Psychosis?

Anyone who drinks alcohol is potentially at risk for alcohol-induced psychosis. The more a person drinks, the greater their risk becomes for developing these symptoms. However, the likelihood of developing alcohol-induced psychosis is higher among certain individuals.

According to the Dutch study that we referenced in an earlier section, alcohol-induced psychosis symptoms are most common among working-age men. That study also noted that people who meet criteria such as the following may also have an elevated risk for developing this mental health concern:

  • Developed alcohol use disorder at a younger age
  • Have low socioeconomic status
  • Are unemployed or living on a pension
  • Live alone

Studies also suggest that having a father who struggled with addiction and/or mental health concerns can also increase a person’s risk for experiencing symptoms of alcohol-induced psychosis.

How Is Alcohol Induced Psychosis Treated in Atlanta, GA?

Treatment for alcohol-induced psychosis must address two important concerns: the alcohol-induced psychosis symptoms that the individual has been experiencing and the compulsion to abuse alcohol that led to the onset of these symptoms.

In most cases, alcohol-induced psychosis symptoms will subside once a person stops drinking. To accomplish this, a person may need services such as the following:

  • Detoxification: Also known as detox, this is a short-term, professionally managed program that allows a person to complete alcohol withdrawal safely and with as little discomfort as possible. Among people who have been drinking heavily for an extended period of time, alcohol withdrawal can be extremely dangerous and potentially deadly. Detox minimizes the health risks of withdrawal, so people can rid their bodies of this dangerous drug.
  • Partial hospitalization programs (PHPs): At the PHP level, people can receive full days of therapy and related support services to help them establish a strong foothold in early recovery. During a person’s time in a PHP, they can learn about the disease of addiction, identify the triggers that may threaten their continued recovery, and develop essential relapse-prevention skills.
  • Intensive outpatient programs (IOPs): Many people step down to an IOP after completing alcohol addiction treatment at the PHP level. IOPs typically offer a few hours of treatment a few days each week. This allows participants to have a structured connection to quality clinical care while also having the opportunity to work, take classes, and otherwise engage in a healthy and productive lifestyle.
  • Outpatient treatment: This is the most flexible level of outpatient care for alcohol addiction. Participants can schedule sessions as needed. Outpatient treatment can be a vital source of ongoing support as a person works to progress in their recovery.

Begin Treatment for Alcohol Addiction Near Atlanta

You don’t have to wait until you hit “rock bottom” to get help for an addiction to alcohol. The day you enter treatment, you take a significant step toward a healthier and more hopeful future. Inner Voyage Recovery Center offers several levels of personalized outpatient care to help adults end their alcohol use and achieve successful, long-term recovery. To learn more about our programs and services, or to schedule a free assessment, give us a call or visit our admissions page.

 

Long-Term Effects of Adderall Addiction

Adderall has helped millions of people achieve a better quality of life. Unfortunately, this drug is also frequently abused. The potential long-term effects of Adderall abuse and addiction can have a profound negative impact on a person’s physical, psychological, and social well-being.

What Is Adderall?

Adderall is the brand name of a prescription medication that contains two stimulants: racemic amphetamine and dextroamphetamine. It is most commonly prescribed to people who have attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). It may also be used to treat narcolepsy.

According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), about 8.7% of adolescents and about 4.4% of adults in the United States have ADHD. Experts estimate that more than 60% of these individuals take Adderall or another prescription medication to help them manage their symptoms. 

When a person with ADHD takes Adderall as directed by their prescribing physician, they may experience the following beneficial effects:

  • Improved concentration and focus
  • Longer attention span
  • Less likely to be distracted
  • Diminished impulsivity
  • Better retention and recall of information

These effects can have a significant positive impact on a person’s ability to function at work, in school, and in other important areas of life. They have also led many people to abuse the drug. 

Why Do People Abuse Adderall?

Many people who don’t have ADHD abuse Adderall in an attempt to improve their focus, concentration, and learning capacity. 

Among both students and professionals, Adderall has developed a reputation as a performance-enhancing substance for the mind. Whether they are cramming for a final exam or pulling an all-nighter to finish an important presentation, people who are seeking to illicitly boost their cognitive capacity often turn to Adderall abuse.

In other cases, people abuse Adderall for recreational purposes. As a stimulant (a category that also includes cocaine), Adderall can increase a person’s energy and improve their mood. It may also enhance the effects of certain other recreational substances. 

Regardless of why a person begins to misuse this drug, the potential long-term effects of Adderall abuse include addiction and a host of other distressing outcomes.

What Are the Signs & Symptoms of Adderall Addiction?

The following signs and symptoms may indicate that a person has become addicted to Adderall:

  • They develop powerful cravings for the drug.
  • They spend a considerable amount of time acquiring and using it.
  • They attempt to buy, borrow, or steal Adderall that has been prescribed to someone else.
  • They lie to one or more doctors in order to get a prescription for Adderall.
  • They continue to use Adderall even after experiencing physical, psychological, or social problems due to prior use.
  • They need to use larger amounts of Adderall to achieve the effects that they were previously able to experience via smaller doses.
  • When they can’t acquire or use Adderall, they become angry, agitated, or irritated.
  • They use Adderall in ways that are clearly hazardous, such as by combining it with alcohol or other drugs.
  • They lie to or otherwise deceive friends and family members about the amount and frequency of their Adderall use.
  • They have dramatic mood swings and changes in energy level.
  • Their appetite changes, which leads to unintentional weight loss
  • When they try to stop using Adderall, they find that they are unable to do so.

What Are the Long-Term Effects of Adderall Addiction?

The following are examples of the many potential long-term effects of Adderall abuse and addiction:

  • Insomnia
  • Unhealthy weight loss
  • Malnutrition
  • Impaired brain functioning
  • Cardiovascular damage
  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Seizure
  • High blood pressure
  • Anxiety and/or depression
  • Psychosis
  • Paranoia
  • Legal problems, such as being arrested, fined, and jailed
  • Medical problems due to aggressive or reckless behaviors
  • Job loss and unemployment
  • Financial difficulties

Contrary to the persistent myth, a person doesn’t have to hit “rock bottom” before they can get help for an addiction. The sooner someone gets the care they need, the less likely they are to experience continued long-term effects of Adderall abuse and addiction.

How Is Adderall Addiction Treated in Atlanta, GA?

Adderall addiction treatment has two primary goals: to help a person end their Adderall use and to prepare them for long-term recovery.

To accomplish this, effective treatment for Adderall addiction can include a variety of therapies and support services. To build a foundation for successful recovery, people may need to acquire important information, develop new skills, adopt relapse-prevention strategies, and make certain lifestyle changes. Therapy can be an essential part of this effort.

When a person receives care at Inner Voyage Recovery Center, their customized treatment plan may include elements such as these:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)
  • Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)
  • Individual and group therapy
  • Family support services
  • Adventure therapy
  • Trauma-informed care

We also offer Christian counseling services for those who wish to incorporate principles of their religious faith into their treatment. 

Begin Treatment for Adderall Addiction in Atlanta, GA

Inner Voyage Recovery Center offers personalized treatment and comprehensive support for adults who have become addicted to Adderall and other prescription medications. Our Adderall addiction treatment center in Georgia features customized programming at three outpatient levels: a partial hospitalization program (PHP), an intensive outpatient program (IOP), and an outpatient rehab. 

When you’re ready to end your Adderall abuse and begin your journey toward successful recovery, the Inner Voyage team is here for you. Visit our admissions page or contact us directly to learn more.

Can You Get Fired for Going to Rehab?

Entering a treatment program can be an essential step on the path to recovery from an addiction to alcohol or another drug. Unfortunately, many people delay getting the help they need because they are worried about their job. Common concerns include: Do you keep your insurance while you’re in treatment? Will you still have a job when you complete the program? Can you get fired for going to rehab?

Can You Get Fired for Going to Rehab?

In a perfect world, the answer to the question, “Can you get fired for going to rehab?” would be a resounding NO. As you may have noticed, though, our world occasionally falls a bit short of perfection. 

Thankfully, many employees in the United States have some legal protections against being summarily fired for seeking mental or behavioral healthcare services, including rehab. However, these laws don’t grant absolute freedom for everyone to remain employed while they are getting whatever type of addiction care they choose. You need to pay close attention to which employees are protected by these laws, which employers are governed by them, and what types of services are covered.

Having said all that, it may be helpful to adjust our focus. Instead of simply asking, “Can you get fired for going to rehab?” we should take a closer look at two federal laws that may protect you if you need treatment for addiction.

Does the ADA Protect You if You Go to Rehab?

The Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) is a landmark piece of federal legislation that was signed into law in 1990. The ADA was designed to prevent people with disabilities from being discriminated against in several areas, including employment. 

In terms of using the ADA to protect your job while you are getting treatment for an addiction, it is important to understand what falls under this law’s definition of a disability.

The website of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights (USCCR) addresses this issue on a page titled “Substance Abuse Under the ADA.” Here are two key sentences from that page:

  • An individual who is currently engaging in the illegal use of drugs is not an individual with a disability when the employer acts on the basis of such use.
  • An employer may not discriminate against a person who has a history of drug addiction but who is not currently using drugs and who has been rehabilitated.

Did you catch the important difference between who is and is not protected by the ADA?

The first sentence refers to people who are “currently engaging in the illegal use of drugs.” In other words, if you are caught using substances in the workplace, or if you show up to work or to an interview under the influence of a substance, you cannot claim a disability as defined by the ADA.

The second sentence refers to someone who developed an addiction but who has not been under the influence of drugs at work. That person may not be discriminated against (such as being fired, punished, or denied employment) based on the fact that they need help or previously spent time in rehab. The USCCR also notes that people “who are currently participating in a rehabilitation program and are no longer engaging in the illegal use of drugs” are covered by the ADA. 

This means that, under the ADA, the disease (addiction) is a protected disability. The behavior that is associated with the disease (substance abuse) is not. 

Can You Use the FMLA to Attend Rehab?

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) was signed into law in 1993. As described by the U.S. Department of Labor, this law permits qualified employees to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave for the following reasons:

  • Childbirth and care of the newborn
  • Adopting a child or having a foster child placed in your care
  • Caring for a spouse, child, or parent who has a serious health condition
  • Serious health condition that renders the employee unable to perform essential job functions
  • Various reasons related to the active duty military services of a spouse, child, or parent

In terms of the FMLA, the answer to the question “Can you get fired for going to rehab?” is found in the fourth reason listed above. As defined by this law, the term “serious medical condition” includes addiction. Thus, if you are a qualified employee under the FMLA, you can take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave to attend certain types of drug addiction treatment.

To be a qualified employee, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Have worked for a covered employer for at least 12 months
  • Work at a location where your employer has 50 or more employees within 75 miles
  • Have worked a minimum of 1,250 hours over the 12 months prior to taking leave 

If your employer meets one of the following criteria, they are a covered employer and are thus governed by the FMLA:

  • Public agencies, including local, state, and federal employers and local schools
  • Private sector employers who have 50 or more employees for at least 20 weeks during a calendar year

Depending on where you live and where you work, state laws, organizational policies, and union-bargained contracts may also contain language that protects you from getting fired if you go to rehab. For a matter as important as this, be sure to take the time to thoroughly review all relevant legislation, policies, and contracts to ensure that you fully understand your options.

Begin Treatment at a Rehab in Atlanta, GA 

Inner Voyage Recovery Center is a trusted source of quality outpatient rehab services for adults in the Atlanta, Georgia, area. When you begin your recovery journey at Inner Voyage, you can expect to receive superior care from a team of skilled and compassionate professionals. When you’re ready to end your substance abuse and start living a healthier life, Inner Voyage is here for you. Give us a call or visit our admissions page today to learn more.

Fentanyl Withdrawal: Signs & Symptoms

In today’s world, fentanyl addiction is becoming increasingly common. According to the DEA, “fentanyl is the single deadliest drug that the United States has ever encountered.” Once a person has become addicted to fentanyl, it can be extremely difficult for them to stop abusing this drug. One reason for this is that fentanyl withdrawal symptoms can be extremely painful. 

Understanding Fentanyl

Fentanyl is an extraordinarily powerful synthetic opioid. As is the case with heroin, morphine, prescription painkillers, and other opioids, fentanyl can ease pain and induce a sense of euphoric relaxation.

Abusing any opioid can put you at risk for severe outcomes, including addiction, overdose, and death. When fentanyl is involved, these risks can be magnified exponentially. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has reported that fentanyl is 50 times more potent than heroin and 100 times more powerful than morphine.

When a person takes fentanyl, the drug binds to the mu-opioid receptors in the central nervous system. This blocks pain signals, but it also slows breathing and heart rate. In hospitals and other legitimate medical settings, fentanyl use is closely monitored to prevent patients from experiencing negative effects. But when someone abuses fentanyl for recreational purposes, it is easy for them to overdose on the drug. Given fentanyl’s potency, an overdose can quickly be fatal.

CDC data indicates that fentanyl overdoses were responsible for more than 50,000 deaths in the United States in 2020 alone. According to the State of Georgia Office of the Attorney General, the annual number of overdose deaths involving fentanyl in the state increased by a stunning 232.1% between 2019 and 2021.

Fentanyl Withdrawal Symptoms

When you develop an addiction to fentanyl, your body begins to adapt to the presence of the drug in your system. When you can’t use fentanyl, or when you try to end your fentanyl abuse, your body will respond with intense physical and psychological symptoms. This is known as withdrawal.

Fentanyl withdrawal symptoms can begin within eight to 12 hours of your last dose. These symptoms typically peak after about three days. Most fentanyl withdrawal symptoms dissipate within about a week, but some can persist for several weeks or even months. 

Common fentanyl withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Powerful cravings for fentanyl
  • Excessive perspiration
  • Watery eyes and runny nose
  • Nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea
  • Severe cramping
  • Muscle pain
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Anxiety
  • Agitation
  • Depression

If you try to stop using fentanyl on your own, the distress of withdrawal can rapidly become overwhelming. This can push you back into the downward spiral of active fentanyl abuse. 

When you get professional care at a reputable treatment center, you will be in a safe and supportive environment where you won’t have access to fentanyl or other addictive substances. Your treatment team can keep you safe and as comfortable as possible until your fentanyl withdrawal symptoms subside.

Types of Treatment for Fentanyl Addiction

Treatment for fentanyl addiction often involves prescription medication and therapy.

The prescription medications that are incorporated into treatment can provide relief from some fentanyl withdrawal symptoms, which makes it easier to stop using the drug. This approach is commonly referred to as medically assisted care or medication-assisted treatment.

Medication can be an extremely beneficial part of treatment for fentanyl addiction. But getting past fentanyl withdrawal symptoms is just one step on the path toward successful recovery. This is why therapy is so important.

During therapy, you can address the emotional, behavioral, and social aspects of fentanyl addiction and recovery. To achieve a drug-free future, you will need to gain insights into your past behaviors, develop essential relapse-prevention skills, and make certain lifestyle changes. Therapy can empower you to accomplish all of this, so you will have a solid foundation for long-term recovery.

At Inner Voyage Recovery Center, the therapeutic component of your fentanyl addiction treatment may involve:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy, or CBT, which can help you replace negative thought and behavior patterns with healthier ways of thinking and acting.
  • Dialectical behavior therapy, or DBT, which can improve your capabilities in areas such as mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotion regulation, and interpersonal effectiveness.
  • Trauma therapy, which can help you process difficult experiences from your past that may have contributed to your struggles with fentanyl abuse and addiction.
  • Family programming, which can help you and your loved ones heal conflicts in your relationships, establish stronger bonds, and better support each other.
  • Health and wellness programming, which can be a source of valuable information about diet, nutrition, and exercise to help you strengthen your body and mind.
  • Adventure-based counseling, or ABC, which uses dynamic outdoor activities to help you overcome self-doubt, build your confidence, and discover healthier ways to spend the time that you previously devoted to acquiring and using fentanyl.
  • Christian counseling, which is an optional service for patients who wish to add a faith-based component to their treatment for fentanyl addiction.

Begin Treatment for Fentanyl Addiction Near Atlanta, Georgia

If you have been struggling with fentanyl abuse and addiction, Inner Voyage Recovery Center can help, with fentanyl rehab in Atlanta.

Features of treatment at our center include multiple levels of care, personalized service, and compassionate support. Throughout your time with us, you will work in active collaboration with a team of skilled and dedicated professionals. 

When you’re ready to stop using fentanyl and start living a healthier and more hopeful life, the Inner Voyage Recovery Center team is here for you. Visit our admissions page or contact us directly to learn more.