A substance use disorder (SUD) occurs when the regular use of alcohol or drugs affects an individual’s daily functioning. Substance use disorders can lead to mental and physical health issues and difficulties meeting responsibilities at work, home or school.
In 2020 the most abused substances in New Jersey, based on treatment admissions were:
- Other opiates
It doesn’t matter what the issue is. Achieve Wellness & Recovery drug rehab in Northfield, NJ, is experienced and prepared to help you or a loved one achieve your goal of recovery and wellness.
Symptoms of a Substance Use Disorder
Drug addiction, also called substance use disorder, is a disease that affects a person’s brain and behavior. It eventually causes an inability to control the use of an illegal or legal drug or medication. When a person is addicted they may keep using the substance despite the harm it’s causing.
As time goes by, larger doses of the drug are needed to get high, and soon, larger doses are needed just to feel “normal.” Attempting to stop the use can cause intense cravings and physical illness (withdrawal symptoms).
Among others, symptoms of drug addiction include:
- Feeling that you have to use the drug regularly. Daily or even several times a day
- Intense urges for the drug that block any other thoughts
- You’re starting to need more of the drug to get the same effect
- Always checking to make sure you have a supply of the drug
- Buying the drug, even though you can’t afford it
- Not handling obligations or work responsibilities
- Cutting back on social or recreational activities due to drug use
- You continue to use the drug, although you know it’s causing problems in your life or causing physical or psychological harm
- Doing things to get the drug that you wouldn’t normally do, such as stealing
- You drive or do other risky activities while under the influence of the drug
- Spending a lot of your time getting the drug, using the drug, or recovering from the effects of the drug
- Trying to stop using the drug but always failing
- Having withdrawal symptoms when you try to stop
What are the Risk Factors for Addiction?
People of any age, sex, economic, or social status can become addicted. However, some factors can affect the likelihood and speed of developing an addiction such as:
- A family history of addiction–Addiction is more common in some families and probably involves genetic predisposition.
- A mental health disorder–An individual is more likely to become addicted if they have a mental health disorder such as:
- Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Peer pressure–This is a strong factor in beginning drug misuse, especially for young people.
- No family involvement–Difficult situations in the family, a lack of bonding with parents or siblings, and a lack of parental supervision may increase the risk of addiction.
- Early use of drugs–Using drugs at an early age can cause changes in the brain while it’s developing and increase the likelihood of continuing to drug addiction.
- Using a highly addictive drug–Certain drugs, like stimulants, cocaine, or opioid painkillers, may cause faster development of addiction than other drugs. Also, smoking or injecting drugs increases the potential for addiction.
Signs of Drug Use or Intoxication
Signs of drug intoxication may vary depending on the type of drug such as:
- Reduced sense of pain
- Drowsiness, sedation, or agitation
- Slurred speech
- Attention and memory problems
- Constricted pupils (narrowed)
- Little awareness or attention to surroundings
- Coordination problems
- Runny nose or nose sores (if snorting the drugs)
- Needle marks (if injecting the drugs)
- Loss of coordination like stumbling or swaying
- Flushing in the face
- Bloodshot eyes
- Talking louder than usual
- Slurred speech
- Clammy or damp skin
- Mood swings or personality changes like aggression or depression
- Slowed reflexes
- Loss of consciousness
- Feeling overconfident and elated
- Increased alertness
- Increased restlessness and energy
- Changes in behavior or aggression
- Rambling or rapid speech
- Dilated pupils (wider)
- Confusion, hallucinations, and delusions
- Anxiety or paranoia
- Nausea or vomiting with weight loss
- Impaired judgment
- Nasal congestion and damage to the mucous membrane of the nose (if snorting the drug)
- Mouth sores, tooth decay, and gum disease from smoking drugs (“meth mouth”)
- Depression as the drug wears off.
- Feeling of euphoria or being “high”
- A higher sense of visual, auditory, and taste perceptions
- Raised blood pressure and heart rate
- Red eyes
- Dry mouth
- Loss of coordination
- Trouble concentrating or remembering
- Slower reaction time than usual
- Anxiety or paranoid thinking
- The odor of cannabis on clothes or yellow fingertips
- Exaggerated cravings for certain foods at unusual times
Long-term use is often linked to:
- Decreased mental sharpness
- Poor school or work performance
- A decline in the number of friends or interests
When to Get Emergency Help
Call 911 if you or someone you know has taken a drug and:
- Might have overdosed
- Goes in and out of consciousness
- Has trouble breathing
- Has convulsions or seizures
- Shows signs of a heart attack such as chest pain or pressure
- Has any other bad physical or psychological reaction to the drug
Almost 90% of the 2,900 drug overdose deaths reported in New Jersey in 2018 involved opioids. This includes heroin and prescription painkiller drugs, the number 1 drug abuse problem in the state. That’s a total of 2,583 deaths, a rate of 29.7%.
New Jersey Drug Use Facts
- The annual average prevalence of illicit drug use disorder in the past year was 2.4% (183.000).
- The annual average prevalence of past-year opioid use disorder (OUD) was 0.9% (70,000). This is higher than the national average of 0.7%
- The annual average prevalence of heroin use for the past year was 0.56% (42,000), higher than the national average of 0.30%.
- The annual average prevalence of past-year marijuana use was 12.5% (942,000), lower than the national average of 16.2%.
New Jersey Drug Rehab Options
Depending on the severity of an individual’s drug use and the length of time they’ve been addicted, there are different levels of care that may be required to achieve the best possible outcome and a successful lasting recovery.
Most of the time, a period of supervised detox is required. Depending on the individual and the drug used, it may last a few days to a week. Detoxification is the period when the body rids itself of the toxins in the bloodstream. Withdrawal from some substances can be extremely uncomfortable and even life-threatening, so a monitored detox in a professional detox center is recommended. Detox is often considered the first step in recovery treatment.
Residential treatment (sometimes called “inpatient”) is considered the highest level of care. The individual lives at the rehab facility and has medical supervision 24 hours a day if needed. The programs are highly structured to keep patients busy with full days of counseling, therapy, and healthy activities. This type of program helps to keep the addict from the distractions and triggers to relapse the occur outside the facility.
Outpatient programs are available at several levels of care. As the name implies, the individual does not live at the treatment facility, so these programs are best for people who have a stable, healthy home situation to return to each day after treatment. Outpatient care levels include:
These programs are suitable options if the individual doesn’t have a severe or long-term addiction. The PHP is the highest level of outpatient programming with the highest number of hours spent at the treatment facility. The following levels of programming have fewer hours of treatment at the treatment rehab.
Outpatient programs are frequently used as step-down or follow-up levels from a higher level of treatment. A person who completes a residential program will often go to an outpatient program to continue their treatment. Research has shown that people who stay in treatment longer have a lower incidence of relapse.
No matter what program you enter, you will engage in different types of therapy. Substance abuse programs almost always include these therapy approaches:
CBT is an evidence-based therapy that helps individuals learn the associations between their thoughts and behaviors. They learn to recognize their negative and unrealistic thoughts and beliefs and how it has been influencing their drug use.
Group therapy is a highly beneficial type of therapy for treating addiction. In group sessions, people learn that they are not the only person with problems and to see issues from diverse perspectives. These are similar to self-help groups in that members discuss issues and hold each other accountable, but, they are different because they are led and directed by trained professional therapists.
During individual therapy, the individual works one on one with their counselor to identify any underlying causes for their substance use. Counselor and patient work to build a trusting, confidential collaboration to solve problems.
Many rehabs also offer alternative therapies. In these approaches, the person learns to consider their whole self–physically, mentally, and spiritually. Practicing meditation or working with animals can help an individual learn things about themself that had not previously occurred to them.
You can find the help you need at Achieve Wellness & Recovery. Our staff of professionals has the experience to help you at any level. The longer you wait, the more difficult your recovery will be. Contact us today and we can discuss what you want and need from treatment. Let us help you make that first step toward recovery.
We’re available 7 days a week and have specific office hours with all doctors on staff. Outside of normal office hours you can receive an on call Doctor or Nurse at your nearby hospital if needed.
Monday – Friday 8:00 – 5:00 | Saturday 9:00 – 5:00 | Sunday 11:00 – 4:00
Megan began her career working in substance use treatment at an inpatient setting where she found her calling for helping the young adult population. Megan has a Master of Science degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Monmouth University with a specialty in Addiction Studies. She is currently a Licensed Associate Counselor and is awaiting her credentialing to become a Licensed Clinical Alcohol and Drug Counselor. Megan has a history working in the mental health and addiction field utilizing CBT and MI approaches within her clinical practices.