Monday, February 27, 2012

Drug Addiction

Drug addiction is a problem that has been experienced by millions of people worldwide.  If you take into account all the people that are affected by an individual's addiction – family, friends, employer – that number rises dramatically.  Given the devastating effects drug addiction can have on someone's life, and the lives of those around them, seeking treatment is one of the most important things you can do if you or a loved one is experiencing it. With the wide variety of different drug addictions, and the numerous reasons for becoming addicted, treatment options have to be diverse and comprehensive, and the following are some of the stumbling blocks of recovery, and how to get around them.

It is important when considering treatment options to think about the circumstances surrounding an individual's addiction. Perhaps they started to abuse drugs because they were bored or unhappy. Another common cause is the use of opiate medications for legitimate chronic pain, which then spirals out of control as the person discovers that they are unable to stop.  The reason for taking these facts into account is the trigger, the catalyst for their addiction, must be addressed at the same time as actually treating the problem.

There are many different options when it comes to drug addiction treatment; behavioral therapy and support groups are two of the most common, coupled with either immediate cessation or gradual reduction of drug use.  Due to the many different causes and contributing factors, treatment must be tailored to the circumstances of the individual, and for this reason it is imperative that people seeking treatment explore all the different kinds of help that are available.  Information is one of the greatest tools in the fight against drug addiction, and educating yourself and your family can make all the difference - so visit, and acquire the knowledge you need.

Friday, February 24, 2012


Those who recognize that they are addicted without the help of others should be commended.  Unfortunately, their bravery can often be nipped in the bud when they attempt to quit on their own and fail.  The problem is withdrawal, an insidious part of the addiction process.

Withdrawal is often discussed as though it is merely a psychological or physical problem.  In truth, it is both in most cases.  Consider an addiction to pain killers, that manifest as both a physical and mental dependency.  The effort to quit the pain killers requires a period of time during which the body divests itself of the drug and its mental and physical craving for said drug.  The ability of someone to do this on their own is extremely limited.  It is not a matter of will power as so many will tell you.  Instead, it is the process of getting through a physical change in the body, a change that takes time and support from third parties.

Recognizing you  or someone around you has an addiction is the first step to dealing with the problem.  The next is to actually seek out treatment.  We tend to be a "do it yourself" society when it comes to the problems we face.  Addiction is one area where such an approach almost always fails and withdrawal symptoms of the mind and body are the reason.  Quitting "cold turkey" might sound noble but it is usually a horrific failure when trying it on your own.  The only means to truly overcome an addiction is with professional help.

The Coleman Institute is a treatment specialist providing help and support for dealing withe addiction to alcohol, opiates, benzodiazepines, Methadone, and Suboxone as well as overcoming withdrawal symptoms.  You've recognized the addiction:  now get the professional help that can get you through the withdrawal process with a minimum of fuss!

Monday, February 20, 2012

What is Drug Detox?

The first step in recovery from addiction to opiates or other drugs is the detox process.  This is the process of eliminating all traces of the drug from a patient's brain and body.  When regular drug use ceases, the detoxification process begins.  Without clinical assistance, detox takes between one and two weeks, and includes a wide variety of symptoms accelerating from mild discomfort to intolerable pain.  This naturally occurring detox is known as withdrawals and few patients ever succeed in overcoming them without assistance.

Clinical treatment has proved invaluable to recovering drug addicts suffering from withdrawals.  In the past, there was little that could be done to speed recovery.  Traditional, in-house treatment programs kept patients in a controlled atmosphere with no access to drugs, as well as providing sedation or counseling as needed.

Recent advancements in clinical detoxification has resulted in a much faster, more comfortable experience for the patient as well as opportunity for long-term recovery.  Programs are now available for accelerated detox, which allows the patient to be completely drug-free in just a few days.  These programs are carefully administered by skilled medical professionals and typically require no hospitalization. 

In most cases, the patient will be mildly sedated for the first day, making the symptoms easily enough tolerated he or she will be able to return home.  On the second day, they will again be mildly sedated, as well as given a precise amount of medication which speeds the body's release of narcotics which speeds up the detoxification.  On the third, and most often final day of treatment, the patient is sedated completely, or to whatever extent is needed to ensure comfort.  They are monitored while specialized medication called antagonists, removes the final traces of narcotics from the body and brain. 

At the point the detox process is considered complete, the patient is completely drug-free.  While this is the first hurdle one must overcome in drug addiction recovery, there are many more to come - from social to psychological to habitual addiction issues; all of which may be successfully and permanently eradicated with determination and proper clinical assistance.  For more information on narcotic detox treatments, or any other step in the recovery process, please visit

Friday, February 17, 2012

The Mystery of Your Reality

"The most courageous thing we will ever do is to bear humbly the mystery of our own reality".

—Richard Rohr

I’m moved by this notion this morning as I think about the people who have come through our doors at The Coleman Institute over the last several weeks.

People who have suffered losses, be it the deaths of children or spouses, health, careers, marriages, homes, or perhaps worst of all, their own self-respect and integrity.  Each person who comes to us for an Accelerated Opiate or Accelerated Benzo or Alcohol detox is making the choice to ‘bear humbly the mystery’ of his or her own reality.

It can be a terrifying thing to anticipate.  Most of our clients fear the actual detox, but the truth is, it’s "Life After Detox" that takes the most courage.

For some people, not having a drug to lean on when sad or bitter memories threaten to overtake them, feels too overwhelming.  For others, facing the reality of the hurt they’ve inflicted on people in their lives seems impossible to bear without some mind and emotion-numbing substances.

Allowing the healing process to begin starts with stopping the drugs or alcohol for good.  It is a journey filled with many paradoxes: you alone must make the decision to change, but people will be along your path at every step to help.  You must enter with courage, but put down all defenses.  You admit your own part in the mess, but allow grace to flood your very being.

One of the things I hear most often at TCI is how compassionately and respectfully our clients are treated.  Call us if you’re ready to check in with the mystery of your reality.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Practice Makes Perfect

I recently saw a fascinating study about PET scans (brain scans) of golfers.  The study compared the brain scans of beginning golfers with brain scans of professional golfers.  The study showed that the beginning golfers spent a lot of their mental energy thinking and worrying about their swing - presumably how they had to swing their club and how well it was going to work out.  The professional golfers on the other hand, had almost no brain activity in either the thinking or the worrying areas of the brain.  All of their brain activity was just in the doing.  They were "in the zone" - and the results showed it!  Their scores were far superior.  Of course, the truth is that to get into the zone, the professional golfers had to put in hours and hours, and years and years, of practice.  They needed to do the same behaviors over and over and over again and then it became automatic. 

Recovery is the same thing.  First, we need to learn what actions to take to stay off drugs and alcohol and then we need to repeat those actions over and over and over again.  When we do that, staying clean and sober becomes automatic - we are in the zone!

I have often used the analogy of riding a bike to represent recovery.  When we start out, we are wobbly and sometimes we can fall off if we go too fast or take too many risks.  It is best if we have a teacher to show us the ropes and it is best if we ride in a group with other people.  We can learn some things from them and we can teach some things to the new riders in the group.  It is also more fun riding with others.  As we get better at riding, we can take some trips and we can look around and appreciate more and more what a great thing it is to be a rider. 

After we have become good at riding a bicycle, we almost never fall off.  Unless, of course, we do stupid things - like take our hands off the handle bars, or not look where we are going.  We may have to negotiate difficult terrain at times, but we can even do that if we take it easy and if we are careful.  It is usually best when riding in difficult terrain like this if we have some friends with us, especially ones who have been on this trail before. 

Similarly, recovery becomes as easy as riding a bike.  After a while, it is easy and fun and most people never fall off.  We do need to keep our wits about us and look out for tricky situations - loss of a job, conflict with spouse, death of loved ones, etc.  But even these don't need to trip us up if we are careful.  In difficult times, it is especially important to ask for help and get support.  As we learn to navigate even these difficult times in life, our confidence improves, our happiness expands, and our appreciation of just how fabulous this life is continues to grow!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Overcoming Methadone Addiction

Methadone addiction is the tragic result of earnest recovery attempts gone awry.  Most patients seeking professional assistance in breaking heroin or Oxycontin are given methadone to ease withdrawal symptoms.  However, it is also a highly addictive mind-altering substance, with a slower and more difficult withdrawal process.  The theory behind this treatment is that the secondary addiction should be easier to break, in a controlled clinical environment.  Unfortunately, that is often not the case.
Despite new, innovative treatment options for heroine and Oxycontin addiction, many treatment facilities continue recommending methadone and the addiction rate continues to increase.  Those struggling to overcome it face special challenges.  The detoxification process takes much longer, forcing most to suffer with debilitating symptoms for an extended period in a step-down approach.  Additionally, many feel disillusioned with addiction treatment programs.  Most methadone addicts are patients who have made a genuine effort to cure drug addiction, sought professional help, and ended up with another addiction for their efforts.  Fortunately, there are new advanced treatment options which have proven successful and tolerable.
Methadone detoxification can be performed as an easy outpatient procedure with daily visits to the facility.  This process accelerates the rate of narcotic release in the body, while providing the patent with adequate sedation to minimize symptoms.  Typically, a state of the art facility can complete the process in little over a week, without need for hospitalization.  In this short time, the patient's body will become entirely drug-free, eliminating any future physical withdrawal symptoms.  The entire detoxification procedure, and ensuing full recovery program is monitored and supervised by trained, certified specialists. Support, counseling, and life transformation assistance allows a patient to fully transform from addiction to full recovery.
If you would like more information about effective options for methadone addiction or methadone-free treatment of heroine and oxycontin addiction, please visit