Medical Issues

Alcohol, Nicotine and Other Drugs During Pregnancy

Drinking and smoking during pregnancy are two of the major causes of developmental problems in children, both in the womb and postpartum. Smoking causes problems because of reduced oxygen to the fetus. The carbon monoxide in cigarette smoke can cut down the ability of the mother’s blood to transport oxygen by as much as 40%. …

Alcohol, Nicotine and Other Drugs During Pregnancy Read More »

There Are Bad Drugs and Good Drugs, And You Probably Aren’t Qualified To Decide Which Is Which

This Memorial Day and all those following will have a special meaning for us.  The 29th of May marked the one-year anniversary of our granddaughter’s suicide. The death of a beautiful 19-year-old is always tragic.  Cadi’s was especially so, because it almost certainly didn’t have to happen.  She suffered from profound depression, had gone off her …

There Are Bad Drugs and Good Drugs, And You Probably Aren’t Qualified To Decide Which Is Which Read More »

Happy Birthday AA — 75 Years and Counting

June 10th, 2010, marks the 75th birthday of Alcoholics Anonymous, the first effective treatment for addiction. The American Medical Association began defining alcoholism as a disease in 1956. Not too long thereafter, they included other forms of addiction as well, but for some reason the disease concept of addiction has failed to gain wide public understanding. …

Happy Birthday AA — 75 Years and Counting Read More »

So Much For “Just Say No!”

Addiction occurs in the sub-cortical portion of the brain — the so-called “primitive brain” that evolved long before the relatively recent development of the cerebral cortex and its ability to reason. These parts of the brain are not subject to coercion, logic, willpower, or thinking problems away. They are the parts that control the functions …

So Much For “Just Say No!” Read More »

Opiate Overdose Due To Reduced Tolerance

In practically all cases, opiates kill by respiratory depression: when we OD, the part of the brain that controls breathing shuts down, and we “forget” to breathe.  This causes death by hypoxia — suffocation. I was reading again today about another addict who overdosed and died because she misjudged her tolerance for Oxycontin after leaving …

Opiate Overdose Due To Reduced Tolerance Read More »

PAWS after 10 years clean and sober?

To Kevin, Your uncle is not suffering from PAWS after 10 years.  In the worst cases, Post-acute withdrawal lasts only about two years after complete abstinence.  Complete abstinence includes opioid and synthetic opioid pain meds, as well as benzodiazepine tranquilizers, among other drugs. There are a number of other conditions with similar symptoms, including diabetes. He needs to …

PAWS after 10 years clean and sober? Read More »

The First Step Is No Theory — Unmanageability

“We admitted we were powerless over alcohol–that our lives had become unmanageable.” (The First Step of Alcoholics Anonymous, used by all 12-step programs in modified form.) We discussed powerlessness last week. We found that we are not powerless over alcohol and other drugs as long as we are not using them. We talked about the fact …

The First Step Is No Theory — Unmanageability Read More »

Benzodiazepine Facts (Xanax, Ativan,Valium, Klonopin, etc.)

Benzodiazepines (benzos), common in drug abuse, are often referred to as “tranquilizers.” Xanax, Ativen, Valium and Klonopin are well-known benzos. They are central nervous system (CNS) depressants that have an effect on the brain similar to that of alcohol. It is extremely dangerous to drink alcohol or use other CNS depressants, such as opiates, while taking benzodiazepines. …

Benzodiazepine Facts (Xanax, Ativan,Valium, Klonopin, etc.) Read More »

Call Now ButtonCall Now