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Friday, April 19, 2019

Addiction Recovery Fellowship at Music Festival

With warmer weather comes the opportunity to have sober fun in recovery. After a long winter, most people are itching to get outside to take a hike, go surfing, or attend music festivals. In the continued observance of Alcohol Awareness Month, we will stick with the theme of drinking for this post.

Attending music festivals isn’t always the best idea for those who are in recovery. Such events are notorious for pervasive drug and alcohol use; but, attending such festivals is not out the question.

recovery music festivalsWith a support network in place and a good understanding of one’s triggers, men and women in recovery are not limited. Members of programs like Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous absolutely insist on enjoying life. Rightly so!

Having a good time is a significant part of recovery. Just because a person works a program of abstinence does not mean they can’t suck the marrow out of life. Still, several precautions should be taken to mitigate the risk of relapse. People in alcohol and substance use disorder recovery who plan to attend a music festival this spring and summer can take steps to protect their progress.

Naturally, people in their first months of working a program should eschew gatherings that might expose them to drugs and alcohol. A strong foundation and healthy coping mechanisms to deal with triggers must be established. For those with more clean and sober time, attending concerts and weekend festivals is possible. Such men and women can have a good time and walk away from their experience with their sobriety in one piece.

Music Festivals Have a Recovery Community

Today marks the beginning of Coachella Music & Arts Festival’s second weekend. Tens of thousands of people are traveling to the California desert en masse to take part in the festivities. Many of those people are working programs of recovery. Moreover, meetings of recovery are held each year for sober music goers. Soberchella has been extant for ten years; it is a recovery community that congregates at Coachella. The organization writes:

“We meet every day of the three-day festival. The meetup times are usually around noon. All twelve-step fellowship participants are welcome, and we do ask that you identify as an alcohol or an addict if you wish to share.” 

The meetings this weekend take place at:
  • 9am - Friday Raych’s Campsite
  • 1pm - Friday Indio Market Place Northeast corner under Cocktail sign.
  • 1pm - Saturday Indio Market Place Northeast corner under Cocktail sign.
  • 1pm - Sunday Indio Market Place Northeast corner under Cocktail sign.
“I was so glad to find this group, and to find out that out of 100,000 people who are here, I wasn’t the only who is doing Coachella sober,” a man named Rick tells The Los Angeles Times.

People in recovery attending Coachella this year may be pleased to learn that the event has changed its alcohol policy. According to Business Insider, Coachella now restricts all alcohol use to designated 21-plus areas away from the stage. Exposure to drinking will be more limited than in previous years.

“I thought I would hate that rule, but it ended up creating a festival experience with fewer rude drunk people, less trash, and an overall nicer atmosphere,” writes Harrison Jacobs for Business Insider

It is still vital to keep in mind that men and women in recovery are still at risk of experiencing urges. As such, it is critical that phones are charged so those attending can contact their sponsor or support network before a relapse occurs.

Southern California Addiction Treatment

Please contact Hope By The Sea if you are struggling with alcohol or any other mind-altering substance. Our team of addiction professional can help you experience the miracle of recovery. Hope Starts Here!

Thursday, April 11, 2019

Millennials: A New Relationship with Alcohol?

Alcohol may not be as important to Millennials, compared to older generations, according to recent trends. That is not to say that drinking isn’t still ingrained in teenage and young adult life; instead, young people are forming new ideas about what it means to be sober. Good news, considering that an estimated 623,000 adolescents ages 12–17 had an alcohol use disorder, according to the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health.

Consuming alcohol and “binge drinking” among young people are still cause for concern. While recent data on young adult drinking habits show statistically minuscule declines in heavy alcohol use, there is some evidence that this demographic is more reflective about imbibing, The Atlantic reports. For myriad reasons, Millennials are choosing to abstain or drink in moderation; how to understand this trend is up for debate.

“There does come a time when there has to be some introspection,” says Britta Starke, an addictions therapist. “Folks in the Millennial generation have maybe a better sense of balance. Some do yoga or meditation or are physically active, so they don’t need to find stimulation and stress reduction in substances.”

Although Starke, the program director of the Alcohol and Substance Abuse Center at the University of North Carolina, points out that her younger patients still lack coping skills, according to the article. Many young people will still turn to alcohol to deal with stress and other uncomfortable feelings, and it is often at a significant cost. She reminds us that advanced liver disease or alcohol hepatitis is on the rise with people under 35.

Marijuana May Play a Role in Changing Attitudes About Alcohol

Millennials Relationship with Alcohol
The rising tide of permissive cannabis laws across the county means that many young people have to choose between breaking the law or drinking legally. In counties with legalized medicinal cannabis, alcohol sales dropped more than 12 percent, according to a 2017 study. Moreover, Starke notes that she is seeing more young people experimenting with prescription painkillers and sedatives.

“It still seems like this is a generation of self-medicating, but they’re using things differently,” said Starke.

While Millennials are changing their attitudes about alcohol, even younger Americans are drinking the least, according to a new study in the journal Pediatrics. Generation Z adolescents are binge drinking less than they used to, The New York Times reports. How people drink in early life can foreshadow their relationship with alcohol when they are older. Time will tell what impact this has on future rates of alcohol dependence and alcohol use disorder.


Suggested Reading During Alcohol Awareness Month

If you are looking for a new book to read during Alcohol Awareness Month, consider Sober Curious: The Blissful Sleep, Greater Focus, Limitless Presence, and Deep Connection Awaiting Us All on the Other Side of Alcohol. The author, Ruby Warrington, provides a guide on living a sober life. Young people who are considering altering their relationship with alcohol may find this read especially interesting.

“Drawing on research, expert interviews, and personal narrative, Sober Curious is a radical take down of the myths that keep so many of us drinking. Inspiring, timely, and blame free, Sober Curious is both conversation starter and handbook—essential reading that empowers readers to transform their relationship with alcohol, so we can lead our most fulfilling lives.”

Alcohol Use Disorder Treatment

Despite changing trends, it is a fact that millions of Americans continue to struggle with alcohol. When dependence or alcohol use disorder develops, it is critical that a person seeks help immediately. Please contact Hope By The Sea if your use of alcohol is adversely affecting your life.

Our dedicated team of addiction professionals can help you determine the reasons why you turn to alcohol. Then we will teach you methods of handling problems and emotions without using mind-altering substances to cope with life.

We firmly believe that the miracle of recovery can be yours too and with our help, you can lead a healthy life in sobriety.

Friday, April 5, 2019

Raising Awareness About Alcohol Use Disorder

Today marks the start of Alcohol-Free Weekend! The annual event invites Americans to join in solidarity in raising awareness about the problem of alcohol and its impact on society. While the next three days will likely be “business-as-usual” for people already in recovery, for others, it is a chance to get a pulse reading on their relationship with alcohol.

Facing Addiction with NCADD, the organization behind Alcohol Awareness Month urges individuals with discomfort abstaining for 72-hours to contact addiction professionals. Those who reach out can learn more about the symptoms of alcohol use disorder and takes steps to recover, if necessary.

Alcohol addiction is a debilitating and pernicious mental health disorder. Those who struggle with alcohol are at risk of developing one or more life-threatening health conditions over time. People whose drinking has become problematic will face many life obstacles. They are often unable to care for a family, hold down a job, or perform in school.

As one’s life becomes more impacted by their alcohol use, they will drink more to cope with the difficulties. Problems lead to more issues, and without outside help, alcohol use disorder is sure to progress. NCADD points out accurately that:

“Alcohol addiction is a chronic, progressive disease, genetically predisposed and fatal if untreated.”


There is a Solution: Alcohol Use Disorder Recovery

If alcohol is harming your life or a family member's life, we encourage you to reach out for support. The effects of sustained, excessive drinking are not to be overlooked. Aside from the caustic influence that heavy drinking can have on one’s personal life, the practice takes an insidious toll on the body. Scientists associate excessive alcohol use with numerous health problems, chronic diseases; such as:
  • Cardiovascular Problems
  • Many Types of Cancers
  • Liver Diseases
  • Gastrointestinal Problems
  • Dementia, Stroke and Neuropathy
Some people might think that it takes a long time of hazardous drinking for the above conditions to develop. However, it is not uncommon for individuals in their 20s and 30s to present in hospitals for such health conditions. Moreover, alcohol use has a hand in as many as 2.8 million deaths each year globally. It’s likely that the exact figure is much higher because of under-reporting.

The theme of this year’s Alcohol Awareness Month is fitting — “Help for Today, Hope for Tomorrow.” Across the country, organizations are working with NCADD to create awareness and encourage men and women to seek treatment.

The events this month aim to raise awareness, and in doing so, they help break the stigma that stands in the way of treatment and recovery. Some 17.6 million people or one in every 12 adults suffers from alcohol use disorder; millions more are at risk of developing the condition.

The uplifting news is that there is a solution men and women can utilize before the damage becomes fatally severe. Millions of Americans are in recovery from alcohol use disorder. The National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence estimates that as many as 20 million people are in recovery from alcohol use.

California Residential Addiction Treatment

Alcohol use disorder has many symptoms, and it helps to seek a professional opinion about the problem. If your alcohol use is problematic and is noticeably changing your life, we invite you to make contact with Hope By The Sea.

Located in beautiful, sunny Southern California, our full-service and family owned California residential treatment center is the perfect setting to discover the miracle of recovery. We provide men and women a safe environment to learn how to lead a life in long-term recovery.

Thursday, March 28, 2019

Lawsuit Settlement Funds Addiction Research

National news outlets continue to focus on the rising tide of synthetic opioids like fentanyl and heroin overdoses. They are also bringing methamphetamine back into the spotlight, along with raising awareness about increasing rates of sedative use. No matter from what angle you approach all these subjects, it is clear that America is amid an addiction epidemic.

Substance use and abuse is a public health crisis in the United States. More than 100 Americans lose their lives to an overdose each day. Hundreds of thousands of deaths have occurred in the last two decades from opioid use alone. It is vital that we never lose sight of how the opiate problem came to be so terrible.

Even though it has become more challenging for some individuals to acquire opioid painkillers from doctors, it is not impossible. Many physicians still have few qualms about doling out opioids en masse. What’s more, no amount of Federal prescribing guidelines will bring back people’s loved ones. It is critical that the pharmaceutical industry is held accountable for disseminating misinformation and turning a blind eye to reckless prescribing practices.

Companies like Purdue Pharma – the makers of OxyContin – and several prescription drug distribution enterprises made billions on the back of addiction. Purdue repeatedly told prescribers that their drug wasn’t addictive in spite of incontrovertible evidence to the contrary. While it is impossible to bring back people already lost, efforts can be made to prevent more overdoses in the future.

Funding Addiction Research and Medicine

Purdue Pharma has often been in the headlines in recent years. Mostly because of the stacks of lawsuits brought against the drug manufacturer. More than 35 state lawsuits are pending against Purdue. There is Federal litigation too; comprised of 1600 suits brought by cities, counties, Native American tribes, and others.

It seemed like the OxyContin maker was going to fight tooth-and-nail to beat their legal troubles in court. However, in a startling turn of events, it was announced that Purdue Pharma had settled with the state of Oklahoma, The New York Times reports. The settlement – to the tune of $270 million – will fund a new addiction treatment and research center at Oklahoma State University in Tulsa.

The Sackler family, the owners of Purdue Pharma, will provide an additional $75 million over five years to the center.

“The addiction crisis facing our state and nation is a clear and present danger,” said Mike Hunter, the Oklahoma state attorney general. “Last year alone, out of the more than 3,000 Oklahomans admitted to the hospital for a nonfatal overdose, 80 percent involved a prescription opioid medication. Additionally, nearly 50 percent of Oklahomans who died from a drug overdose in 2018 were attributed to a pharmaceutical drug. Deploying the money from this settlement immediately allows us to decisively treat addiction illness and save lives.” 

It is unclear what will become of the other pending lawsuits in the wake of the Oklahoma settlement. Moreover, we must remember that Purdue is not the only player involved in the American opioid crisis. Several other opioid manufacturers, distributors, and pharmacies are the targets of lawsuits across the country.

Before the settlement, there were headlines that Purdue may file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, according to the article. Such a move could protect it from landslide judgments. Rather than lose badly in a televised court trial, the company settled; but they are far away from being out of hot water.

“There is blood in the water now, and with the threat of bankruptcy, the concern is that counties and states may settle on the cheap early to avoid getting little to nothing later on,” said Elizabeth Chamblee Burch, a law professor at the University of Georgia.

Southern California Opioid Addiction Treatment

Millions of Americans are living with an opioid use disorder and can benefit greatly from treatment. Detoxification, rehab, and working a program of recovery is the only sure way to prevent disease progression. Please contact Hope By The Sea if you are struggling with prescription opioids or heroin.

We can help you break the cycle of addiction and help you find the miracle of recovery.

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