Beware of a New Zombie Drug Made from Fentanyl and Xylazine

In the world of illegal drug use, dangerous new mixtures pop up all the time. One of the more recent substances, dubbed the “zombie drug,” has been making headlines for its terrifying effects and for being a headache for law enforcement. But what is this illicit drug, and why should you be careful?

What Is the Zombie Drug?

The “zombie drug” name may sound like something out of a horror movie, but its reality is far scarier. At its core, the zombie drug is a deadly cocktail made of two potent substances: fentanyl mixed with the drug xylazine.

While its exact origins aren’t known, it was first detected by drug authorities in the early 2000s in Puerto Rico, where users coined it “Flakka.” Zombie drugs began surfacing more recently in larger metropolitan environments, including Los Angeles, before spreading to Europe and beyond. the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration issued an alert in 2023 warning of a “sharp increase in the trafficking of fentanyl mixed with xylazine, which is also known as ‘tranq’ or ‘tranq’ dope.’”

Individually, both fentanyl and xylazine are powerful drugs with their own set of risks and side effects. Fentanyl, a synthetic opioid, is a main player in the opioid crisis gripping nations worldwide. Renowned for its extreme potency, fentanyl is estimated to be up to 100 times stronger than morphine. It was initially intended for medical use in managing severe pain. These days, it’s illegally produced, often mixed with other drugs, and distributed on the street. Fentanyl’s strength puts users at risk of overdose, often with fatal consequences.

Xylazine comes from veterinary medicine. It’s used to calm down large animals like horses and cattle. Today, xylazine is added to illegal substances to lengthen euphoric effects.

When combined, fentanyl and xylazine create a toxic brew that causes extreme sedation and detachment. This combination is often referred to as “tranq” or “tranq dope,” due to its tranquilizing effects. The interaction between these two substances increases their risks, including potential overdose and death. The zombie drug xylazine’s effects on users include, among other things, exhaustion, confusion, and a loss of awareness.

Why Is Mixing Fentanyl and Xylazine Dangerous?

The combination of xylazine and fentanyl is extremely dangerous. Beyond its immediate tranquilizing effects on the brain, the zombie drug has a severely negative impact on the physical well-being of its users. Both fentanyl and xylazine weaken the central nervous system, resulting in respiratory problems, coma, and even death.

One particularly distressing side effect of using the zombie drug is the development of severe skin sores and wounds, commonly referred to as “tranq skin wounds.” The drug stops blood flow to the skin, causing tissue damage and necrosis (also known as rotting skin”). The sight and, potentially, smell of individuals who have fentanyl and xylazine wounds is very disturbing. Combined with the confusion and loss of awareness, one could easily believe they’ve entered the Night of the Living Dead.

Who Can Help with Tranq Addiction?

People on tranq are urged to seek drug counseling and treatment from qualified addiction professionals. Overcoming tranq zombie drug addiction requires a comprehensive approach that encompasses professional treatment, peer support, and community resources.

Drug addiction treatment centers provide a safe and supportive environment with the guidance of experienced medical professionals. From detoxification services for xylazine withdrawal to therapy and group support, treatment can be customized to address the unique needs of each individual.

Beyond formal treatment settings, community and peer support play an important role in the recovery journey as well. Peer support groups such as Narcotics Anonymous (NA) provide a supportive and non-judgmental environment to share experiences, seek guidance, and draw strength. By fostering a sense of belonging, these support networks serve as a source of inspiration and motivation.

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Opioid Drug Treatment Options

Treatment centers offer a range of programs designed to support individuals on the path to recovery from opioid addiction.

Evidence-Based Therapy

Evidence-based psychotherapy is a proven practice for overcoming opioid addiction. Some of the most common evidence-based therapies for addiction to opioids like tranq include:

  • Medication-assisted treatment (MAT): MAT is when clinical professionals use medication to help someone recover from opioid abuse. For those addicted to the zombie drug, medications such as methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone help reduce cravings for the drug, reduce the severity of fentanyl and xylazine withdrawal symptoms during detox, and reduce the risk of relapse.
  • Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT): CBT helps opioid users change negative behaviors and thought patterns associated with substance abuse. It helps someone build coping skills and strategies for dealing with triggers and cravings.
  • Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT): DBT blends elements of CBT with mindfulness to help someone develop emotion-regulation techniques and interpersonal effectiveness skills.
  • Motivational Interviewing (MI): This counseling approach is all about exploring and resolving ambivalence about changing drug-use behaviors.
  • Trauma-Informed Therapy: It’s common for those with an opioid addiction to have experienced trauma at some point. Trauma-sensitive practices are added to treatment to promote safety, empowerment, and healing.
  • Holistic Therapy: Holistic practices like yoga, art therapy, and adventure therapy take the mind, body, and soul into account for more well-rounded treatment.
  • Aftercare: Access to resources, support services, and relapse-prevention strategies help those in recovery stay on track. Peer support groups such as SMART Recovery and 12-step programs like NA are also invaluable to the recovery journey.
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Opioid Addiction Treatment at Aliya Health Group

Aliya Health Group is a nationwide network of alcohol and drug addiction treatment centers that offers evidence-based programs for opioid use disorders. Our highly personalized clinical approach and full continuum of care give you the tools you need to build a drug-free life.

Our opioid addiction treatment programs are rooted in dignity and compassion for all. We utilize treatments like dual diagnosis to aid in treating both addiction and mental illness.  Our unique levels of care for opioid addiction treatment include:

  • Medical Detox Program
  • Residential Treatment Program (inpatient)
  • Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP)
  • Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP)

If you or someone you know needs opioid treatment or xylazine dependency treatment, please contact Aliya Health Group today. We’re here to provide support in ending physical dependence on opioid drugs like tranq and reducing the negative impact of xylazine. Treatment can help prevent overdose deaths, improve mental illness and physical health, end a substance use disorder, and improve public health and public safety. If you’re ready for addiction and behavioral health treatment, call us today.

Are Blue Xanax Pills Real? What You Need to Know

Are you familiar with the medication “Xanax”? Perhaps you’ve heard about it from a friend, seen it mentioned online, or even taken it yourself. Xanax is a commonly prescribed medication used to treat anxiety disorders and panic attacks.

But what about “blue Xanax?” Are they a real thing or just a myth? Here, we delve into the world of Xanax, explore the truth about blue Xanax pills, and discuss key facts about the potential of addiction to this drug.

What Is Xanax?

Xanax, scientifically known as alprazolam, is a prescription medication categorized as benzodiazepine. Benzodiazepines are a class of drugs that act on the central nervous system to produce a calming effect. Whether it’s brand-name Xanax or a generic variation, it’s prescribed to help alleviate symptoms such as excessive worry, nervousness, and tension.

Xanax is commonly prescribed for the following conditions:

  • Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD): persistent and excessive worry about various aspects of life, including work, relationships, and health
  • Panic Disorder (PD): sudden and recurrent episodes of intense fear or discomfort, often accompanied by physical symptoms such as palpitations, sweating, and shortness of breath
  • Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD) (also known as social phobia): an intense fear of social situations and interactions, leading to avoidance behaviors
  • Specific Phobias: irrational fears of specific objects or situations, such as heights, spiders, or flying.

So, is Xanax a prescribed substance? Is Xanax an opioid? As a benzo, Xanax is classified as a Schedule IV controlled substance in the United States. While it’s not an opioid, it has a recognized medical use but also carries a risk of dependence and misuse. Long-term use of Xanax can lead to tolerance and addiction. Eventually, higher doses are needed to achieve the same effect, and withdrawal symptoms are likely to occur when the medication is discontinued.

A healthcare professional should keep close tabs on their patients whenever Xanax is prescribed. It’s also essential to address the underlying causes of anxiety, panic disorder, and phobias through therapy, lifestyle changes, and other forms of support.

Blue Xanax: Is It Real or Fake?

Blue Xanax is simply a variation of alprazolam, the active ingredient in Xanax. Whether it’s blue or another color, the hue of the Xanax pills doesn’t indicate authenticity or effectiveness. The color of the pill, including blue, green, white, or yellow, is often influenced by the specific formulation and the manufacturer’s preference.

Xanax comes in assorted colors and shapes. White Xanax bars are the most common appearance, referencing the rectangular shape. Generic versions can be found in a variety of shapes, such as round or oval tablets. You may also come across blue Xanax bars.

The only way to know if your Xanax is authentic—whether it’s blue or another color—is to have it prescribed and dispensed by a licensed healthcare provider and pharmacy. Counterfeit drugs pose serious health risks, as they may contain incorrect dosages, harmful additives, or even different substances altogether.

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Facts About Anxiety

Anxiety is a widespread and often misunderstood mental health condition. It’s important to note that anxiety isn’t the same as stress. Stress is a response to a perceived threat in a situation, while anxiety is a stress reaction. Anxiety affects millions of people worldwide, with recent statistics showing

  • GAD affects approximately 6.8 million adults in the United States, making up 3.1% of the population. Women are twice as likely to be affected as men, and GAD commonly co-occurs with major depression. Only 43.2% of individuals with GAD receive treatment.
  • PD affects around 6 million adults in the U.S., accounting for 2.7% of the population. Similar to GAD, women are twice as likely as men to experience panic disorder.
  • SAD impacts approximately 15 million adults in the U.S., making up 7.1% of the population. Unlike GAD and PD, SAD affects men and women equally and often begins around age 13. Alarmingly, many individuals with SAD suffer symptoms for a decade or more before seeking help.
  • Specific phobias affect an estimated 19.3 million adults in the U.S., comprising 9.1% of the population. Women are twice as likely as men to develop specific phobias and symptoms typically emerge during childhood, with it starting at the age of 7 years old, on average.

Signs and Symptoms of Xanax Addiction

So, is Xanax addictive? While it can be an effective treatment for anxiety when used as prescribed, it also carries a risk of misuse, dependence, and addiction. Here are some signs and symptoms of Xanax addiction to be aware of:

  • Physical dependence: Individuals may develop a tolerance to Xanax, requiring higher doses to achieve the desired effect.
  • Psychological dependence: People may experience cravings for Xanax and feel unable to cope without it.
  • Withdrawal symptoms: Discontinuing Xanax abruptly can lead to withdrawal symptoms such as anxiety, insomnia, agitation, and seizures.
  • Social and behavioral changes: Addiction to Xanax may lead to social withdrawal, neglect of responsibilities, and changes in behavior.
  • Continued use despite negative consequences: Individuals with Xanax addiction may continue to use the drug despite experiencing adverse effects on their health, relationships, or work.

If you or someone you know is struggling with Xanax addiction, it’s essential to seek help from a qualified healthcare professional. Treatment for Xanax addiction typically involves a combination of detoxification, therapy, support groups, and medication-assisted treatment (MAT).

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Xanax Addiction Treatment at Aliya Health Group  

If you think you have a problem with Xanax addiction or you see signs your loved one does, it’s important to get professional help. Aliya Health Group’s treatment centers offer have helped thousands of people break free from dependence.

Addiction treatment has various levels of care, from inpatient to intensive outpatient to recovery homes. The program that’s right for you will depend on the severity of your addiction and what is most supportive of your life situation.

Your treatment will most likely include the following:

Drug Dependence Assessment

A doctor or addiction specialist will document your medical history and ask questions about your Xanax use. They’ll assess and may diagnose co-occurring disorders like depression, anxiety, or post-traumatic stress disorder. 

Detox and Withdrawal Management 

Dependence on Xanax happens quickly. Stopping abruptly can result in life-threatening withdrawal symptoms, such as seizures. During medical detox, a physician will gradually reduce the amount of Xanax you’re taking.

Behavioral Therapy

After detox, you’ll begin addressing the core issues that led to Xanax abuse. You’ll do this through therapy and holistic approaches. Some of the most effective therapies include: 

Individual therapy: A form of psychotherapy that involves one-on-one sessions with a therapist to address emotional, psychological, or behavioral issues. The therapist helps the client gain insight into their challenges, develop coping skills, and make positive changes in their life.

Group Therapy: Like individual therapy, group therapy is a form of psychotherapy. It involves a session with a small group of people who share similar concerns or challenges, such as drug abuse. A therapist leads the session, which provides a supportive and confidential environment where group members can share their experiences, provide feedback, and learn from one another.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT): CBT is a form of therapy that helps someone recognize the connection between negative thoughts and actions. Your therapist will guide you in identifying fundamental beliefs that sustain harmful thought processes, provide strategies to confront undesirable thoughts constructively and help you substitute them with more beneficial alternatives.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT): DBT is an offshoot of CBT that teaches mindfulness as a way to regulate emotions. The goal is to help someone become more mindful of their thoughts and feelings to better understand why they turn to drugs or alcohol. DBT teaches people how to manage stressful situations in a healthy way. 

Holistic Treatment: Aliya Health Group is focused on the person as a whole. That means focusing on the body, mind, and soul. Holistic treatment options include yoga, meditation, sound healing, nutrition counseling, and life skills training. The goal is to help someone develop skills they can use following rehab to maintain sobriety in the long run. 

Aftercare

Once you’ve completed treatment, your team will work with you to develop a comprehensive aftercare plan for continuing in recovery. Most often, it includes ongoing therapy sessions and support group meetings. Substance use disorders can be overcome; having the right help can make all the difference. Our recovery center offers dual diagnosis treatment, family therapy, benzodiazepine addiction treatment, and drug detox programs for all. Blue Xanax, yellow Xanax, and green Xanax: no matter what your prescription drug issue is, we’re here to help.

Understanding the facts about anxiety and Xanax addiction can help you make informed decisions about your mental health and well-being. If you have any questions about blue Xanax, addiction, or anxiety, contact Aliya Health Group. Our drugs and alcohol program coupled with mental health treatment can help anyone get back on the right track.

Will Delta 8 Show Up on Drug Tests?

You may have seen headlines about a drug called Delta 8 in recent years. Some people say it’s the next big thing in cannabis, offering a milder high than regular marijuana. So, what exactly is Delta 8? Is it legal, and will it show up on drug tests?

What Is Delta 8?

Delta 8, or Delta-8 THC, is a naturally occurring compound found in the cannabis plant. Alongside its more well-known counterpart Delta 9, Delta 8 is one of the main ingredients in marijuana. Delta 8 THC can also be produced through chemical conversion of other cannabinoids, such as CBD (cannabidiol), using various methods.

In 2012, Colorado, and Washington paved the way for the legal sale and consumption of recreational marijuana. Many states have followed suit, and to date, the following states have fully legalized marijuana:

Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and the District of Columbia.

The remaining states have various legal stipulations regarding medical marijuana and CBD oil. However, there are still four states (Idaho, Kansas, South Carolina, and Wyoming) where marijuana remains fully illegal in all forms.

With the legalization of marijuana, a variety of products Delta 8 products have hit the market. According to one recent study, 16 percent of regular marijuana users also use Delta 8. Delta 8 products come in many forms, such as edibles, vape cartridges, and tinctures. Because of the relaxing effects, many people rely on Delta 8 gummies for sleep. Many others combine Delta 8 with other prescription drugs like Xanax to intensify the sense of calmness.

Delta 8 vs Delta 9: What’s the Difference?

Despite their similar names and shared origins in the cannabis plant, Delta 8 and Delta 9 differ in their chemical structures and effects on the body.

Delta 9 THC is the main psychoactive ingredient in cannabis. It’s responsible for inducing the euphoric “high” that comes with consuming it. Delta 8 is similar, but it delivers a milder psychoactive effect. This is because the two compounds have a subtle difference in chemical structure.

At a molecular level, Delta 8 and Delta 9 differ in the placement of a double bond within their chemical structures. Delta 9 has the bond on the ninth carbon chain, while Delta 8 THC has it on the eighth. This seemingly tiny difference affects the potency and psych activity between the two compounds.

Gummies are one of the most popular forms of consuming both Delta 8 and Delta 9. Their popularity stems from several factors:

  • Ease of Use: Gummies are easy to consume and dose, making them convenient to enjoy without the need for special equipment or preparation.
  • Discreetness: Gummies are discreet and can be consumed in public without drawing attention, unlike smoking or vaping.
  • Variety: Gummies come in many flavors, strengths, and formulations to suit preferences and needs.
  • Duration of Effects: Many people wonder, “How long do Delta 8 gummies last?” and “How long do Delta 9 gummies last?” Typically, the effects of both gummies can last anywhere from 4 to 8 hours, but this can vary from person to person. This is why many people use gummies for sleep.
  • Precise Dosing: Gummies typically come in pre-dosed servings, making it easier for users to control their intake and avoid accidentally taking too much.
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Drug Tests

In terms of drug testing methods, both Delta 8 and Delta 9 have the potential to trigger a positive result on a test. Detecting delta 8 in the body is the same process as detecting delta 9. Standard drug screenings typically detect the presence of THC metabolites in urine testing samples, regardless of whether they’re from Delta 8 or Delta 9. THC can also be detected via blood testing and hair testing, but these are less common. Therefore, you should exercise caution if you have a drug test coming up because marijuana of all kinds stays in your system for up to a month in some cases.

How to Get Delta-8 Out of Your System for a Drug Test

The fact is, clearing Delta 8 from your system isn’t easy and it will take at least a few days. While there are no evidence-based tactics, there are a few things that can help.

  • Hydrate: Focus on drinking plenty of water. Since Delta 8 is excreted via the kidneys, this may help flush out any residue of Delta 8 from your system. Common beverages like green tea or jasmine tea can also make you urinate more often, which could play a role in getting rid of Delta 8. 
  • Exercise: The metabolites of THC tend to store up in your fat cells. Cardio-driven and weight-training exercises may help you boost your metabolism to burn more fat, reducing the amount of THC in your body.
  • Avoid Alcohol: Alcohol can boost the storage of THC in your fat cells. Once THC is stored in your fat cells, removing it becomes challenging. Avoid alcohol if you have a drug test coming up.

Is It Safe to Use New Forms of Marijuana?

The safety of using new forms of marijuana, including products containing Delta 8, depends on various factors. About Delta 8 specifically, the FDA has stated it has received several reports of bad experiences, underscoring the need for caution when using products containing this ingredient.

The safety of new forms of weed depends on:

  • Regulation and Legality: In areas with limited regulation, there may be concerns about the purity of the products.
  • Quality and Source: Reputable manufacturers use high-quality cannabis extracts and adhere to strict manufacturing standards to ensure the quality of ingredients. Without proper labeling, you can’t be sure you’re getting a quality product.
  • Lab Testing: Trusted manufacturers typically conduct third-party lab testing to verify the potency and purity of their products.
  • Dosage and Consumption: As with any substance, including marijuana, it’s crucial to use new forms responsibly and in moderation. Edibles and other oral consumption methods have a delayed effect and last longer. That delay can increase the risk of overconsumption and negative effects.
  • Individual Factors: Things like medical history and sensitivity to cannabinoids can cause potential interactions.

Is Marijuana Addictive?

The question of whether marijuana is addictive is a complex and often debated topic. While weed doesn’t produce physical dependence in the same way opioids or alcohol do, it can lead to psychological dependence or addiction in some individuals.

Unlike drugs such as heroin or cocaine, which can cause severe physical withdrawal symptoms when you stop using them, marijuana withdrawal tends to be milder. Symptoms can include:

  • Irritability
  • Mood swings
  • Insomnia
  • Decreased appetite
  • Cravings for weed

It’s important to recognize that physical withdrawal symptoms aren’t the only sign of addiction. Some people experience psychological symptoms, where they rely on the drug to cope with stress, anxiety, depression, or other underlying issues.

People who use weed regularly, particularly in high doses or with other substances, may be at a higher risk of developing dependence or addiction. Several factors can influence the likelihood of developing marijuana addiction, including:

  • Frequency and duration of use
  • Potency of the drug
  • Individual susceptibility
  • Co-occurring mental health conditions

Treatment options for marijuana addiction typically involve behavioral therapies, counseling, and support groups. They each focus on underlying psychological factors and aim to help users quit. While there are currently no FDA-approved medications specifically for treating marijuana addiction, there are plenty available to manage co-occurring mental health conditions or withdrawal symptoms.

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Drug Addiction Treatment at Aliya Health Group

Aliya Health Group’s drug treatment centers provide a loving, caring, health-centered environment for adults with addiction challenges and their families. We offer a variety of evidence-based and holistic approaches, so you can find the support you need on your recovery journey.

Our treatment team of highly credentialed behavioral health experts brings together unique specializations to provide the best care possible. We believe that anyone can obtain long-term recovery, and we’re committed to delivering exceptional treatment and essential support that will empower anyone to succeed.

For more information about our drug addiction treatment programs, contact us today at (888) 973-2078.

Will an Edible Show Up in a Drug Test?

In recent years, the landscape surrounding marijuana, cannabis, or as it’s commonly referred to, weed, has shifted. With changing attitudes toward purposes, a variety of consumption methods have shown up, including the ever-popular edibles.

But with this newfound popularity comes questions, particularly regarding drug testing. Do edibles show up in drug tests? How long do they stay in your system? Are they addictive? Let’s delve into these questions.

What Are Edibles?

First, it’s worth noting that marijuana, or cannabis, goes by various names depending on cultural and regional factors. Common synonyms include:

  • Weed
  • Pot
  • Herb
  • Ganja
  • Mary Jane
  • Grass
  • Bud

Put simply, marijuana edibles are food products infused with cannabis extracts, typically containing THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). This is the compound responsible for the “high” sensation associated with marijuana use.

THC edibles come in various forms, ranging from baked goods like brownies and cookies to candies, chocolates, edible gummies, beverages, and even savory snacks. The process of making edibles involves infusing the chosen food item with cannabis extracts, often in the form of cannabis butter or oil. This infusion allows the THC and other cannabinoids to bind with the fats in the food, to distribution evenly throughout it.

One of the reasons why edibles are particularly popular is their discreet nature. Unlike smoking or vaping, which can produce noticeable odors and require specific equipment, edibles resemble ordinary food items. This makes them less obvious and more convenient to enjoy in various settings.

Of course, just like any other ingestion method, eating marijuana edibles can and probably will trigger a drug test. 

Increased Acceptance of Marijuana 

Changing attitudes toward marijuana have changed for both recreational and medicinal uses. The therapeutic benefits of pot have led to its legalization for medical purposes in numerous states and countries. This change in perception has paved the way for the development and regulation of a wide range of cannabis-infused products. With growing market demand and increased accessibility, marijuana edibles have become the go-to for many people.

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Are Edibles Dangerous?

One of the primary concerns people have about edibles is the possibility of overdosing. While it’s true that consuming too much THC can lead to discomfort and unpleasant effects, fatal overdose from marijuana alone is rare. Unlike certain other substances, such as opioids or alcohol, weed doesn’t suppress vital bodily functions like breathing to the point of causing death.

However, it’s important to recognize that consuming extremely high doses of THC, particularly in the form of edibles, can lead to intense psychoactive effects that may be overwhelming and uncomfortable. These effects can include extreme anxiety, paranoia, rapid heart rate, hallucinations, and even temporary psychosis in some cases. While not life-threatening, such experiences can be distressing and may require medical attention to manage symptoms and ensure well-being.

Due to the delayed onset and lasting effects, avoiding certain activities is recommended. Some things that could pose risks to yourself and others include:

Driving a Car: Operating a vehicle under the influence of marijuana edibles can impair judgment, coordination, and reaction time. This increases the risk of accidents on the road. You should wait until the effects of the edible have fully subsided before getting behind the wheel.

Operating Heavy Machinery: Similarly, operating heavy machinery or engaging in tasks that require concentration and coordination should be avoided while under the influence of edibles. Impaired thinking can increase the likelihood of accidents and injuries in industrial or workplace settings.

Making Important Decisions: Avoid making big decisions or commitments while under the influence of edibles. Impaired judgment and altered perception may affect your ability to assess situations accurately and make sound choices.

Going to Work or School: Depending on the potency and duration of the edible’s effects, it may be advisable to refrain from attending work or school. Attempting to function in a professional or educational setting while under the influence can impair productivity, performance, and interpersonal interactions.

Mixing with Other Substances: Combining edibles with alcohol or other drugs can increase the effects of both as well as the risk of bad reactions or overdose. It’s essential to use caution and moderation when consuming edibles and avoid mixing them with other substances.

How Long Do Edibles Last?

Many people wonder how long edibles stay in your system and will an edible show up in drug test results. Several factors can influence how long edibles stay in your system, including:

Dosage: Higher doses of THC in edibles may result in longer-lasting effects and a more extended detection window in drug tests.

Frequency of Use: Chronic or heavy use of edibles can lead to the accumulation of THC metabolites in fat cells, prolonging the detection window in drug tests.

Individual Metabolism: Metabolic rate, body weight, and overall health can affect how quickly your body processes and eliminates THC from your system.

Product Potency: The potency of the edible product, measured in milligrams of THC per serving, can influence both the intensity and duration of effects.

Detection in Drug Tests: How long do edibles show up in drug tests? On average, THC metabolites can be detected in urine for up to 1-7 days after consumption. Occasional edible users typically clear THC from their system more quickly than frequent or heavy users. If you take an edible, there’s a good chance a drug test will detect cannabis. Almost any recreational amount of THC can trigger a positive test. This includes hair follicle tests and urine tests.

Some people who use marijuana daily or close to that may find it takes up to a month or longer to remove all of the drugs from their system. 

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Is Marijuana Addictive?

While weed is not considered physically addictive in the same way as substances like opioids or alcohol, it is possible to develop a psychological dependence on it. This means that some individuals may experience cravings and a compulsive desire to use marijuana despite negative consequences in various areas of life.

The addictive potential of marijuana is thought to be influenced by several factors, including:

  • Neurobiology: THC acts on the brain’s reward system, triggering the release of dopamine, increasing pleasure and reinforcement. Over time, repeated exposure to THC can lead to changes in the brain’s reward circuitry, potentially contributing to addictive behaviors.
  • Genetics: Genetic factors may play a role in predisposing certain individuals to develop problematic marijuana use patterns. Variations in genes related to the brain’s reward system and cannabinoid receptors may influence the possibility of addiction.
  • Environmental and Psychological Factors: Stress, trauma, peer influence, and availability of marijuana can also contribute to the development of addictive behaviors. Additionally, individuals with co-occurring mental health disorders, such as depression or anxiety, may be at greater risk of developing problematic marijuana use.

If you’re struggling with problematic pot use, it’s important to seek support and treatment. Behavioral therapies, support groups, and counseling can help you develop coping strategies, find underlying issues contributing to addiction, and build a supportive network of peers.

Drug Addiction Treatment at Aliya Health Group

If you or someone you know is struggling with the symptoms of weed withdrawal, Aliya Health Group is ready to help.

There are various treatment options available, including:

  • Partial-care programs
  • Inpatient / residential treatment programs
  • Outpatient programs
  • Aftercare programs

Throughout the drug addiction treatment, you’ll work with a dedicated group of counselors, medical professionals, and other recovery specialists who can help you stop eating edibles. This team is trained to evaluate your symptoms and guide you toward a program that’ll help you refrain from using weed in the future.  If you smoke cannabis, it can remain in your system for quite some time. While a THC gummy or any cannabis product may seem safe, you very well may fail a drug test. Programs like dual diagnosis treatment, outpatient treatment, dialectical behavior therapy, medical detox, medication-assisted treatment, individual therapy, group therapy, expressive arts therapy, sober living, and more can help those who are ready to recover. Don’t smoke weed anymore with help from a recovery center.

Contact us today to learn more about our drug counseling programs and how we can help. A treatment center with treatment programs for cannabis edibles can help you. Our rehab centers for drug and alcohol abuse have unique levels of care and behavioral health programs to help. Call today and verify insurance information which can cover the cost of rehab. Stop your edibles consumption and start your recovery today!

The 12 Steps of NA for Beginners: Your Guide to Success

Following addiction treatment, many struggle to maintain their sobriety. If that’s you, then the 12 Steps of Narcotics Anonymous (NA) might be the beacon of hope you’ve been searching for. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore what NA is, delve into the 12 steps of NA, offer tips for completion, and shed light on additional avenues for assistance.

What Is NA?

Narcotics Anonymous, often abbreviated as NA, is a support group for individuals grappling with drug addiction. It’s more than just an organization—it’s a lifeline for those seeking recovery and redemption from the clutches of substance abuse. But what exactly is NA, and how does it operate?

At its core, Narcotics Anonymous is a global, community-based fellowship dedicated to assisting individuals in overcoming narcotics addiction. Unlike traditional treatment programs, NA relies on the power of peer support and shared experiences to foster healing and growth. It’s a place where individuals can come together in solidarity, free from judgment, to find solace, strength, and guidance on their journey to sobriety.

The origins of NA can be traced back to the founding principles of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) in the 1930s. As AA gained traction and recognition for its groundbreaking 12-step recovery model, individuals grappling with narcotics addiction saw the need for a similar support system tailored to their specific struggles. Thus, Narcotics Anonymous was born—a sister organization to AA, founded on the same principles of fellowship, mutual aid, and spiritual growth.

NA meetings can be found in communities worldwide, spanning continents and cultures. These meetings take place in a variety of settings, including churches, community centers, and even virtual spaces. What sets NA apart is its grassroots nature—all meetings are run by volunteers who are themselves in recovery, emphasizing the principle of “one addict helping another.”

At the heart of NA lies the 12-step recovery model, a guiding framework for personal transformation and spiritual awakening. Adapted from the original 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous, these principles serve as a roadmap for individuals seeking to break free from the grip of addiction and reclaim their lives. From admitting powerlessness over addiction to making amends and carrying the message to others, each step represents a crucial stage of the journey toward sobriety and self-discovery.

But NA is more than just a program—it’s a community, a family, and a source of unwavering support for those in need. It’s a testament to the power of connection and compassion in the face of adversity, offering hope where there was once despair and a path forward where all seemed lost.

In essence, Narcotics Anonymous is a beacon of light in the darkness of addiction, a lifeline for those who dare to dream of a better tomorrow. Through fellowship, faith, and the unwavering commitment to one another, NA stands as a testament to the resilience of the human spirit and the boundless potential for recovery and renewal.

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What Are the 12 Steps of NA?

The 12 steps of Narcotics Anonymous (NA) represent a transformative journey toward recovery from drug addiction. These steps serve as a roadmap for individuals seeking to break free from the cycle of substance abuse and embrace a life of sobriety, spirituality, and personal growth. Let’s delve into each step, exploring what it entails and what is required in each phase of the journey.

Step 1: We admitted we were powerless over our addiction, that our lives had become unmanageable.

The first step is about acknowledging the grip that addiction has on our lives. It requires a humble acceptance of our powerlessness over drugs. It’s recognizing that our lives have become chaotic and unmanageable as a result.

Step 2: Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

In the second step, we open ourselves to the possibility of a higher power—a force beyond our own understanding—that can guide us toward healing and restoration. It’s about cultivating faith and trust in something greater than ourselves to help us find clarity and sanity amidst the chaos of addiction.

Step 3: Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.

Step three involves surrendering our will and ego to a higher power, as we understand it. It’s an act of relinquishing control and placing our faith in a spiritual principle to guide our actions and decisions moving forward.

Step 4: Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

The fourth step is a thorough self-examination—a fearless inventory of our past behaviors, actions, and motivations. It requires honesty, introspection, and a willingness to confront the shadows lurking within ourselves.

Step 5: Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.

Step five is about owning up to our past mistakes and wrongdoings. It involves confessing our shortcomings and character defects to a higher power, ourselves, and another trusted individual—a process that fosters accountability, humility, and the courage to seek forgiveness and redemption.

Step 6: Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.

In the sixth step, we build toward letting go of our character defects and shortcomings, trusting in the transformative power of a higher power to guide us toward personal growth and spiritual evolution.

Step 7: Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.

Step seven is a prayer for divine intervention. It’s an earnest request for our higher power to help us shed the burdens of our past and lead us toward a brighter future. It’s an act of humility, surrender, and trust in the process of spiritual healing.

Step 8: Made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all.

In the eighth step, we take inventory of the harm we’ve caused others as a result of our addiction. We compile a list of individuals we’ve wronged and cultivate a genuine willingness to make amends and seek forgiveness for our past actions.

Step 9: Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.

Step nine involves taking concrete action to make amends for the harm we’ve inflicted on others. It requires humility, sincerity, and a commitment to repairing the damage done, while also respecting the well-being of those we’ve harmed.

Step 10: Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.

The tenth step is about maintaining ongoing self-awareness and accountability. It involves regularly assessing our thoughts, actions, and behaviors, and promptly admitting when we’ve veered off course. It’s a practice of honesty, humility, and continual growth.

Step 11: Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.

Step eleven emphasizes the importance of spiritual connection and mindfulness. It encourages us to cultivate a deeper relationship with our higher power through prayer, meditation, and reflection, seeking guidance and strength to align our actions with divine will.

Step 12: Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to addicts, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

The final step is about embracing the transformative power of the 12-step journey and paying it forward. It involves sharing our experience, strength, and hope with others who are struggling with addiction. It’s about embodying the principles of recovery in all aspects of our lives. It’s a commitment to service, compassion, and the ongoing pursuit of spiritual growth.

While each step presents its own unique challenges and opportunities for growth, steps 1, 4, and 9 tend to be the most difficult to navigate for many NA members. Having dedication and willingness is key.

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How to Complete All 12 Steps of NA

Completing all 12 steps of Narcotics Anonymous (NA) is a profound journey of self-discovery, healing, and spiritual growth. While the process may seem daunting at first, with dedication, support, and a willingness to embrace change, you can navigate each step and become transformed. Here are some tips that can help.

Take it One Step at a Time: Recovery is a journey, not a destination. Approach each step with patience and mindfulness, focusing on the present moment rather than overwhelming yourself with the entire process. Remember, progress is made one step at a time.

Seek Support: Don’t go it alone. Lean on your fellow NA members, sponsors, and supportive friends and family members for guidance, encouragement, and accountability. Sharing your struggles and triumphs with others who understand can provide invaluable support and motivation.

Be Honest and Open-minded: Honesty is the cornerstone of recovery. Be willing to confront your past mistakes, fears, and shortcomings with brutal honesty and vulnerability. Embrace open-mindedness and be receptive to new ideas, perspectives, and ways of thinking that may challenge your beliefs and behaviors.

Work with a Sponsor: A sponsor is a trusted mentor and guide who has walked the path of recovery before you. They offer wisdom, support, and accountability as you navigate the 12 steps. Choose a sponsor who you respect, trust, and feel comfortable opening up to, and be willing to follow their guidance and suggestions.

Practice Self-Compassion: Recovery is a journey of self-discovery and growth, and it’s okay to stumble along the way. Be kind to yourself and treat yourself with the same compassion and understanding that you would offer to a friend facing similar challenges. Celebrate your progress, no matter how small, and forgive yourself for setbacks.

Attend Meetings Regularly: Regular attendance at NA meetings provides a vital source of support, inspiration, and connection with others in recovery. Make a commitment to attend meetings consistently, even when you don’t feel like it, and actively participate by sharing your experiences, listening to others, and contributing to the fellowship.

Practice Spiritual Principles: The 12 steps of NA are rooted in spiritual principles such as honesty, humility, acceptance, and service. Incorporate these principles into your daily life through prayer, meditation, acts of kindness, and service to others. Cultivate a deeper connection with your higher power, whatever that may be for you, and trust in its guidance and wisdom.

Who Else Offers Help for Drug Addiction?

While NA provides invaluable support for individuals in recovery, it’s not the only resource available. Treatment centers offer comprehensive programs tailored to address the unique needs of individuals struggling with addiction. These programs may include:

Detoxification: Medical detoxification programs provide a safe and supervised environment for individuals to withdraw from drugs or alcohol under medical supervision.

Therapy: Various therapeutic approaches, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), and motivational interviewing, can help individuals address underlying issues contributing to their addiction and develop coping strategies for maintaining sobriety.

Support Groups: In addition to NA, there are numerous support groups and organizations dedicated to helping individuals in recovery, such as SMART Recovery and Celebrate Recovery.

Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT): MAT combines medication with counseling and behavioral therapies to treat substance use disorders effectively.

Drug Addiction Treatment at Aliya Health Group

Through an Aliya Health Group rehab program, you can access the comprehensive support you need to embark on the journey to recovery with confidence and determination. Our drug treatment centers provide a full continuum of care for opioid treatment. Our integrated approach to alcohol abuse treatment offers both evidence-based and holistic recovery practices. Please contact us today to learn how we can help you learn more about 12-step programs and mutual support groups for addiction therapy.

We can also help with insurance verification, finding meetings near you, and any questions you may have about AA and NA or addiction recovery in general. Alcohol and drug recovery is possible, our behavioral health and dual diagnosis treatment center can help.

What Happens at a Methadone Detox Center?

Methadone detox centers play an important role in helping individuals struggling with opioid addiction. These facilities provide specialized care and support to help you safely transition off methadone and onto the path of recovery. What is methadone and how does a methadone detox center help?

What Is a Methadone Detox Center?

Methadone is a medication used to treat those with a confirmed diagnosis of opioid use disorder. It works by reducing cravings and withdrawal symptoms, making it easier for people to stop using opioids, like heroin or prescription painkillers. Taken daily, it is available in liquid, powder, and diskette forms. Methadone is only available through authorized clinics and healthcare providers. You can’t buy methadone online or at emergency clinics because it’s a controlled substance.

A methadone detox center is a place where people struggling with addiction to opioids can get help. During treatment, doctors and nurses supervise the process of reducing methadone doses gradually. This helps to minimize withdrawal symptoms and make the detox process safer and more comfortable. The goal is to help you become free from methadone dependence and start a journey toward recovery from opioid addiction.

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Is Methadone Dangerous?

Methadone is safe and effective when taken as prescribed. The dose is customized for each patient, and it’s often adjusted and readjusted throughout the detox process. Using methadone in any way other than prescribed can result in unintentional overdose.

Many people wonder, “How long does methadone stay in your system?” When prescribed for pain, a dose of methadone lasts four to eight hours. When prescribed for medication-assisted treatment for opioid use disorder, the effects can last 24–48 hours. Even after the effects of the drug wear off, the ingredients remain in the body for much longer. Methadone can remain in urine for up to 14 days following the last dose.

Another risk of methadone is the potential for addiction. Some people may become reliant on methadone to function normally, which can lead to long-term health issues and difficulties stopping the medication. Others mix it with other drugs or alcohol, which can lead to serious complications and even a deadly overdose. Other medications may interact with methadone and cause heart conditions, which is why professional supervision is so important.

Methadone Overdose Symptoms

It’s important to keep the side effects of methadone in mind, as some of them may indicate an emergency. Methadone overdose symptoms include:

  • Difficulty breathing or shallow breathing
  • Feeling lightheaded or faint
  • Hives or a rash; swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat
  • Chest pain
  • Fast or pounding heartbeat
  • Hallucinations or confusion

Overall, while methadone can help treat opioid addiction when used as directed by a doctor, it’s essential to be aware of the potential risks and take precautions to avoid them.

What Are the Signs of Methadone Addiction?

Recognizing the signs of methadone addiction can make the difference in helping yourself or someone you love to overcome it. Some of the most common signs of addiction include:

  • Persistent Cravings: Feeling a strong urge or desire to use methadone, even when it’s not necessary for pain relief or treatment.
  • Increased Tolerance: Needing higher doses of methadone to achieve the same effects as before. This can indicate that the body has become accustomed to the drug and requires more to produce the desired result.
  • Withdrawal Symptoms: Experiencing physical or psychological symptoms when methadone use is stopped or reduced. These symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, muscle aches, anxiety, irritability, and insomnia.
  • Focus on Obtaining Methadone: Spending a significant amount of time and effort obtaining methadone, thinking about using it, or planning how to get more.
  • Neglecting Responsibilities: Prioritizing methadone use over responsibilities at work, school, or home. This may result in neglecting duties, missing deadlines, or failing to fulfill obligations.
  • Social Isolation: Withdrawing from friends, family, and social activities in favor of spending time alone or with other individuals who use drugs.
  • Continued Use Despite Negative Consequences: Continuing to use methadone despite experiencing negative consequences, such as legal problems, financial difficulties, or strained relationships.

If you or someone you know is showing methadone addiction symptoms, seek help from a healthcare professional or addiction specialist.

Is it Safe to Drink Alcohol on Methadone?

Combining methadone and alcohol can have dangerous consequences. Both methadone and alcohol depress the central nervous system. Combining them can cause severe drowsiness, dizziness, and confusion. It can also slow down your breathing and heart rate, which can be life-threatening, especially if you take high doses of methadone or drink a lot of alcohol.

Alcohol can also worsen the mental and emotional side effects of methadone, such as depression, anxiety, and mood swings. It can also impair your judgment and decision-making abilities, making it harder to think clearly and make safe choices. Drinking alcohol during methadone detox can interfere with the process and make it harder to successfully stop using methadone. It can also increase the risk of relapse and overdose, as alcohol can lower your inhibitions and make you more likely to use other drugs.

To ensure the safety and effectiveness of methadone treatment, avoiding alcohol and illicit drugs is a must.

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What Is Methadone Detox Like?

For someone going through methadone detox, it can be a challenging and uncomfortable experience. They may experience withdrawal symptoms such as:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Muscle aches
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia

During methadone detox, the dose of methadone is gradually reduced under the supervision of doctors and nurses. This helps to lessen withdrawal symptoms and increase your comfort during detox. The exact tapering schedule will depend on factors including your dosage, how long you’ve been taking it, and your overall health.

The length of methadone detox can vary from person to person. It may take several days to a few weeks to complete the process, depending on individual circumstances. With the support of healthcare professionals and loved ones, they can successfully navigate the detox process and begin their journey to recovery.

Methadone Addiction Treatment at Aliya Health Group   

At Aliya Health Group, we offer medically assisted treatment programs that build the solid foundation you need to end your opioid addiction and avoid a relapse. Our evidence-based approach uses three main components: medicationcounseling, and behavior therapy.

While undergoing methadone detox, you may receive:

  • Individual, group, and/or family counseling
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)
  • Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)
  • Motivational interviewing
  • Cognitive processing therapy (CPT)

Working together, each component of our program will help you fight cravings, learn healthy coping skills, and rebuild your self-worth. Our team of detox counselors is available around the clock to ensure you’re following the process and taking the right steps toward recovery.

If you’ve searched for “methadone doctors near me,” you’ve found your partner in your journey toward sobriety. To learn more about our medication-assisted treatment programs and how you can take the next step toward an opioid-free life, contact us today.

How to Manage Weed Withdrawal Symptoms

Many supporters of marijuana deny the possibility that you can become addicted to the drug. They’ll say things like, “I used weed every day for 30 years and then quit without any issues. It’s not addictive.” The fact is, research shows you can develop an addiction to the drug and experience weed withdrawal symptoms. Why are there so many misconceptions about weed, and what should you do if you’re unable to stop using it?

What Is Marijuana?

Marijuana is the street name for cannabis, a flowering plant recognized for its psychoactive properties. The plant has acquired many other nicknames including pot, weed, Mary Jane, ganja, herb, and many more.

The plant contains compounds known as cannabinoids, with the most notable ones being THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol). These compounds interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system, influencing a range of physiological functions.

Marijuana’s history dates back thousands of years, with various civilizations using it for its therapeutic properties, from pain relief to spiritual ceremonies. Throughout history, marijuana has faced both acceptance and skepticism in society. Its standing is often influenced by cultural, political, and legal factors. In some cultures, marijuana is revered for its medicinal properties, while in others, it has been stigmatized due to its psychoactive effects. Today, It’s the number-one drug used by Americans. It’s estimated that 55 million people use marijuana, and 4.4 million people suffer from a marijuana use disorder.

Stereotypes surrounding marijuana users have also evolved. From the outdated image of the “lazy stoner” to more nuanced portrayals in media, these views often oversimplify the diverse range of individuals who choose to engage with marijuana.

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Is Marijuana Safe?

The safety of marijuana has been a topic of increasing relevance, especially with the changing legal status in various states. Marijuana legalization has created regulated markets, contributing to a more structured and controlled environment. This shift has facilitated research on marijuana, providing a deeper understanding of its effects and potential benefits.

Medicinal Benefits
Marijuana has been recognized for its medicinal properties, offering relief to individuals facing conditions such as cancer and epilepsy. For cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy, marijuana can help alleviate nausea and vomiting, enhancing their overall well-being. Certain strains of marijuana, particularly those rich in CBD, have shown promise in reducing seizure frequency in individuals with epilepsy. Additionally, marijuana has been explored for managing chronic pain and anxiety.

Modern weed, with its increased potency, presents both opportunities and challenges. The many forms of marijuana, including concentrates, edibles, liquid weed, and vapes, offer unique experiences. It’s important to recognize the potency of today’s marijuana can lead to stronger effects.

The safety of marijuana also depends on individual factors such as health conditions, tolerance, and susceptibility to adverse effects. Some individuals may experience side effects like anxiety, paranoia, or impaired coordination, especially with high-THC strains. If you’re considering using weed, you should consult with your healthcare professional, especially if you have pre-existing health conditions or concerns.

Regular and heavy marijuana use can lead to the development of tolerance, where higher doses are needed to achieve the desired effects. Some people combine the prescription drugs with weed for an enhanced experience. For instance, Adderall and marijuana are a popular combination, with users reporting a more intense high.

Is Marijuana a Stimulant or Depressant?

Many people wonder, “Is marijuana a stimulant” or “Is marijuana a depressant?” The drug can act as both a depressant and a stimulant, depending on the strain and the chemical reaction it has in a user’s body.

Stimulant Effects
Sativa-dominant strains are often associated with these stimulant effects. These include heightened energy levels, increased alertness, and enhanced focus. Individual experiences may vary, but users often report feeling more sociable, creative, and motivated after consuming marijuana with stimulant properties. This can make it a popular choice for activities that involve mental engagement and social interaction.

Depressant Effects
Indica-dominant strains are commonly associated with these depressant effects. These include relaxation, sedation, and a sense of calm. Individuals using marijuana with depressant effects may experience a sense of tranquility, making it great for relaxation and sleep-inducing purposes. This makes indica strains popular choices for evening or nighttime use.

Hybrid Strains
Many marijuana strains available today are hybrids, combining characteristics of both sativa and indica strains. Hybrid strains aim to provide a balanced experience, offering users a blend of stimulant and depressant effects.

Is Weed Addictive?

Marijuana use ranges from casual and occasional use to more frequent and habitual patterns. Habitual use implies a regular and consistent engagement with marijuana, often as part of a routine or for recreational purposes. On the other hand, addiction involves a more profound psychological and physiological reliance on a substance. You may experience cravings and an inability to control or stop consumption.

While marijuana is not considered chemically addictive in the same way substances like nicotine or opioids are, it can lead to psychological dependence. Psychological dependence involves a reliance on marijuana to cope with stress, anxiety, or other emotional states. Individuals may develop a habit of using marijuana as a coping mechanism, and breaking this pattern can be challenging.

Are There Weed Withdrawal Symptoms?

Deciding to stop using marijuana can bring about withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms happen as a result of this decrease in your body’s natural cannabinoid level. This imbalance without a substance is referred to as being “physically dependent.” The most typical symptoms of weed withdrawal include:

  • Irritability, anger, or aggression
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Reduced appetite or weight loss
  • Restlessness
  • Depressed mood
  • Stomach pain
  • Shakiness or tremors
  • Sweating
  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Headache

Less common signs and symptoms of marijuana withdrawal include:

  • Trouble concentrating
  • Racing heart
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Fatigue
  • Runny nose

How Long Does Weed Withdrawal Last?

In general, withdrawal symptoms peak within the first week of stopping and gradually go away over the following weeks. Withdrawal symptoms can last up to two weeks.

Tips for Managing Withdrawal:

  • Gradual Reduction: If possible, consider tapering off marijuana use gradually rather than quitting abruptly. This can help mitigate the intensity of withdrawal symptoms.
  • Stay Hydrated: Drinking plenty of water can aid in flushing out toxins from the body and alleviate certain withdrawal symptoms.
  • Healthy Distractions: Engage in activities you enjoy to distract yourself from cravings and withdrawal discomfort.
  • Seek Support: Reach out to friends, family, or support groups to share your journey and receive encouragement.
  • Professional Guidance: In severe cases, seeking guidance from a healthcare professional or addiction specialist can provide tailored support, weed detox assistance, and more.
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Marijuana Treatment at Aliya Health Group

If you or someone you know is struggling with the symptoms of weed withdrawal, Aliya Health Group is ready to help.

There are various treatment options available, including:

  • Partial-care programs
  • Inpatient programs
  • Outpatient programs

Throughout the weed detox process, you’ll work with a dedicated group of counselors, medical professionals, and other personnel. This team is trained to evaluate your symptoms and guide you toward a program that’ll help you refrain from using weed in the future.

Contact us today to learn more about our programs and how we can help.

What Is the Dangerous New Drug Isotonitazene?

In the fall of 2019, a new synthetic opioid made its debut in the U.S. The drug, called isotonitazene (ISO), is as dangerous and deadly as fentanyl, prompting the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to send out national warnings nationwide. What exactly is ISO, and why is it such a threat in the world of opiates?

What Is Isotonitazene?

Isotonitazene (ISO) or “new fentanyl,” is one of the newest synthetic opioids gaining popularity within the world of designer drugs. ISO belongs to the benzimidazole class of opioids. Its potency is similar to fentanyl, and it can be found in pill form, powder, and liquid. Isotonitazene was first synthesized in the 1950s as an opioid alternative for medical use and remained in obscurity until 2019 when it was identified by authorities in the Midwest U.S. In 2020, the DEA classified ISO as a Schedule I substance.

The primary source of isotonitazene is China, where it’s manufactured, marketed, and then exported worldwide. It’s typically mixed with other drugs to create a more potent and cheaper end product. In 2022, the DEA reported that most of the ISO they analyzed was in the form of “cheap filler” for other illicit substances, such as heroin, or sold as counterfeit versions of opioids like hydromorphone.

The population that’s likely to abuse isotonitazene appears to be the same as those abusing prescription opioid analgesics, heroin, tramadol, fentanyl, and other synthetic drugs. As with many synthetic opioids, isotonitazene’s effects range from euphoria and numbness to breathing difficulty, coma, and death.

Why Is Isotonitazene Dangerous?

The major concern is that the potency of isotonitazene can—and has—caused deadly overdoses in unsuspecting victims. While there’s still limited study data available because ISO is so new to the scene, overdose deaths involving the drug have been reported in Europe, Canada, and the midwestern U.S.

Because isotonitazene is produced and distributed illegally, many users are unaware of its strength and potential risks. People can unwittingly consume doses that far exceed safe limits, increasing the likelihood of unintentional overdoses and other health risks. The drug acts on the central nervous system, depressing respiratory function. This effect, coupled with its potency, heightens the risk of respiratory failure—a critical factor in each fatal opioid overdose.

Tragically, many overdose victims have no idea they’re ingesting this dangerous and extremely potent drug. According to the DEA, ISO currently can only be properly identified after a lab test, so most people don’t realize they’re buying it until it’s too late.

Why Is Isotonitazene Dangerous?

The major concern is that the potency of isotonitazene can—and has—caused deadly overdoses in unsuspecting victims. While there’s still limited study data available because ISO is so new to the scene, overdose deaths involving the drug have been reported in Europe, Canada, and the midwestern U.S.

Because isotonitazene is produced and distributed illegally, many users are unaware of its strength and potential risks. People can unwittingly consume doses that far exceed safe limits, increasing the likelihood of unintentional overdoses and other health risks. The drug acts on the central nervous system, depressing respiratory function. This effect, coupled with its potency, heightens the risk of respiratory failure—a critical factor in each fatal opioid overdose.

Tragically, many overdose victims have no idea they’re ingesting this dangerous and extremely potent drug. According to the DEA, ISO currently can only be properly identified after a lab test, so most people don’t realize they’re buying it until it’s too late.

What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Synthetic Opioid Abuse?

Identifying the signs and symptoms of isotonitazene abuse is important for early intervention. Synthetic opioid abuse can cause:

  • Respiratory Distress: Users may experience noticeable respiratory issues, such as shallow or labored breathing. Severe cases may result in respiratory arrest.
  • Psychological Disturbances: Users may have heightened anxiety, paranoia, or hallucinations, reflecting the impact of synthetic opioids on mental health. These psychological symptoms can create erratic behavior and impaired decision-making.
  • Gastrointestinal Disturbances: Persistent nausea, vomiting, and digestive issues can contribute to malnutrition and overall physical deterioration.
  • Skin Abnormalities: ISO can cause skin issues such as itching, rashes, or noticeable changes in complexion.
  • Social and Occupational Dysfunction: Individuals struggling with isotonitazene abuse may experience a decline in social relationships and occupational functioning. This could include isolation from friends and family, job loss, or academic difficulties.

Recognizing these signs is crucial for healthcare professionals, friends, and family members to provide timely support and intervention for individuals grappling with isotonitazene abuse.

What Is Isotonitazene Treatment Like?

It’s important to note that seeking professional help is non-negotiable for effective isotonitazene addiction treatment. Anyone struggling with ISO abuse requires a comprehensive and tailored approach to treatment, involving:

  • Medical detoxification
  • Inpatient or outpatient treatment
  • Counseling and therapy
  • Medication-assisted treatment (MAT)

Choosing the Right Opioid Rehab Center

It’s best to choose a rehab center that offers a full continuum of care for opioid addiction treatment. At Aliya Health Group, our treatment centers provide that and more. To treat opioid addiction, our clinical team offers unique levels of care, including:

Medical detox: Before you can move on to a brighter future, you must remove all the opioid drugs from your system. Medically supervised detox is a safe and effective way to treat withdrawal symptoms and make detox as comfortable as possible.

Residential treatment: Inpatient recovery involves living full-time at our rehab center while you undergo treatment for synthetic opioids. The structure of inpatient programming allows you to focus your entire attention on getting sober and overcoming mental health issues. Our team of clinicians creates a personalized treatment plan that best suits your needs. An integrated approach to treatment offers both evidence-based and holistic recovery practices.

Partial hospitalization program (PHP): PHP is a more flexible treatment option that still offers structure for recovery. You attend therapy five days per week while you live at home or in one of our sober living centers. The goal of a PHP is to build on the skills and tools learned in residential treatment to begin the transition back to normal life.

Intensive outpatient program (IOP): Another step down in intensity from a PHP, an IOP involves regular treatments and meetings at a rehab center, but usually fewer days per week and for a shorter duration. The focus is on preparing you to re-enter your normal life free from the pitfalls of substance abuse.

Outpatient program: Outpatient rehab is one of the last steps in recovery. It’s considered a step down from intensive outpatient treatment. This level of care involves building on all the tools and coping skills learned throughout rehab. It ensures you have what you need to remain sober and keep your mental health on an even keel after completing rehab.

Aftercare: Aftercare is for those who have completed opioid addiction treatment. It helps you maintain your sobriety, build a support network, and address ongoing challenges related to addiction.

If you or your loved one are struggling with synthetic opioid abuse, don’t wait. Contact Aliya Health Group today to take the first step toward a brighter future.

What Is the Most Addictive Drug?

Drug addiction is a far-reaching and complicated issue that affects millions worldwide. In 2021, 46.3 million people aged 12 or older had a substance use disorder (SUD) in the past year, including  24.0 million who had a drug use disorder and 7.3 million people who had both an alcohol use disorder and a drug use disorder. Understanding drug addiction and why some get caught up in its drip leads to a commonly asked question: What is the most addictive drug?

What Is Drug Addiction?

According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, addiction is defined as a chronic, relapsing disorder characterized by compulsive drug seeking and use despite adverse consequences. While people can become addicted to many substances from coffee to gambling, drug addiction (or substance use disorder) can be difficult to overcome.

Getting hooked on drugs like marijuana, nicotine, or heroin can happen to anyone. It often starts when someone tries a recreational drug in social situations, just to see what it’s like. But for some, especially with opioids, things escalate and become more regular. With opioids, it can even start when someone takes prescribed medicines or gets them from others who have prescriptions.

Different drugs have different risks, and some, like opioid painkillers, can get you hooked faster than others. So, it’s important to be aware of the risks and how quickly addiction can happen.

Understanding the neurobiology of drug addiction is important. The most dangerous drugs impact the brain’s reward system, creating a cycle of cravings and compulsive use. This leads to a cycle of addiction and the need for a professional treatment program

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What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Drug Addiction?

Recognizing the signs and symptoms of drug addiction can help you recognize when to seek help for yourself or a loved one. Common signs of drug addiction include:

  • Behavioral Changes: Abrupt mood swings, irritability, or a decline in personal grooming habits.
  • Physical Changes: Unexplained weight loss, bloodshot eyes, or a noticeable decline in coordination.
  • Social Withdrawal: Isolation from friends and family, forsaking previously enjoyed activities.
  • Financial Issues: Frequent requests for money with no clear explanation, stealing, or selling personal belongings.
  • Tolerance and Withdrawal: The need for increasing amounts of the substance to achieve the same effect and experiencing physical or emotional symptoms when not using.

What Is the Most Addictive Drug?

Determining the single-most addictive drug is a challenge due to individual susceptibility, method of use, and the presence of other substances. Nonetheless, certain drugs are notorious for their addictive potential.

  • Alcohol: Many people wonder, “Is alcohol a drug?” Yes, it is, and despite its legal status, alcohol ranks high in addictive potential, impacting the brain’s reward system. Long-term use can result in severe health issues, including liver damage and cognitive impairment.
  • Cocaine: A powerful stimulant derived from the coca plant, cocaine increases dopamine levels, leading to intense pleasure. Short-term effects include heightened alertness and energy, but long-term use can result in severe cardiovascular issues and addiction.
  • Benzodiazepines (benzos): Prescribed for anxiety and sleep disorders, benzos can be highly addictive. Prolonged use can lead to dependence and withdrawal symptoms, requiring careful tapering under medical supervision.
  • Methamphetamine (meth)
    Another powerful stimulant, meth triggers a surge of dopamine, creating intense euphoria. Chronic use can lead to severe dental problems, weight loss, and mental health issues.
  • Opioids: Prescription painkillers and illicit drugs like heroin fall under the category of addictive drugs. They also bind to receptors in the brain. Opioid addiction can lead to respiratory failure, contributing significantly to the ongoing opioid epidemic.
  • Nicotine and Cannabis (marijuana): Substances like nicotine and cannabis, perceived as less harmful, can also lead to dependence and addiction.

While these substances are known for their addictive nature, it’s crucial to acknowledge individual responses, understanding that any drug has the potential to lead to dependence.

Who Can Help with Drug Addiction?

Overcoming drug addiction often requires professional help. Treatment centers provide crucial support and guidance on the path to recovery from addictive drugs. While each treatment center offers different programs, they usually include variations of the following:

Detoxification:

  • Medical supervision during the initial withdrawal phase helps manage potentially dangerous symptoms.
  • Detox is the first step in breaking physical dependence.

Therapy and Counseling:

  • Individual and group therapy address the psychological aspects of addiction.
  • Identifying triggers and developing coping mechanisms are key components.

Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT):

  • Combining medications with counseling, MAT is effective, especially for opioid and alcohol addiction.

Aftercare and Support:

  • Ongoing support is important. Aftercare programs, support groups, and counseling can help you maintain recovery.

Comprehending drug addiction and substances with high addictive potential is crucial for prevention and treatment. If struggling with addiction, seeking professional help is the initial step toward a healthier, drug-free life. The journey to recovery is challenging, but with the right support, it’s a real possibility.

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Drug Addiction Treatment at Aliya

At Aliya Health Group, our drug addiction treatment centers draw on a blend of evidence-based traditional therapies, and experiential and alternative approaches. We also offer medication-assisted treatment programs. Our programs are tailored to help you effectively recover from alcohol and drug addiction, ensuring your safety and comfort throughout the healing process.

Our nationwide rehabilitation centers offer evidence-based treatment programs for those struggling with drug addiction. To successfully treat alcohol and drug abuse, we provide a full continuum of care across our treatment center locations. Our addiction treatment programs include:

  • Medical detox program
  • Residential treatment program
  • Partial care (PC) program
  • Intensive outpatient program (IOP)
  • Outpatient program (OP)

Our inpatient programs, including detox and residential care, provide round-the-clock medically supervised support, along with holistic therapies. All therapies are conducted in the peaceful environment of our your own treatment residence, which allows us to maintain a focused and personalized approach to treatment. Whether on an individual basis or in small groups, our addiction treatment programs are designed to meet the unique needs of each client.

After completing inpatient treatment, clients can transition through PC and IOP to continue receiving comprehensive support to ensure the best possible outcomes. Following aftercare, clients can also participate in our customizable outpatient treatment programs for ongoing support and guidance.

At every step, we create personalized treatment plans to guide our clients throughout their addiction recovery journey. If you or a loved one are struggling with drug addiction, contact us today.

What Do Crack Pipes Look Like?

Have you ever found yourself wondering, “What do crack pipes look like?” or perhaps discovered a strange item among a loved one’s possessions? If so, you’re not alone. From the ins and outs of crack itself to what a crack pipe actually looks like, we’ll provide the insight you need to build a better understanding.

What Is Crack?

Crack is the crystalline (solid) form of cocaine, hence the name crack cocaine. Crack is made by adding ammonia to a mixture of cocaine and water, creating a milky white solution known as a freebase. This combination elicits a quick, intense high. The powerful euphoric effects, while incredibly short-lived, are the reason why crack is considered the most addictive form of cocaine.

To truly understand why people abuse crack, it’s important to understand its origins, production, and how it differs from its powdered counterpart, cocaine.

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Origins and Production of Crack Cocaine

Crack, like cocaine, comes from the coca plant. For centuries, indigenous people in the Andean region of South America had been using coca leaves. Traditionally, these leaves were chewed or brewed into tea for their stimulant effects.

In the late 19th century, cocaine gained popularity in Western medicine and was used as an ingredient in various tonics and elixirs. Sigmund Freud, the Austrian neurologist and founder of psychoanalysis, even praised the drug for its stimulating effects. However, by the early 20th century, concerns about its addictive nature and harmful effects began to emerge, leading to legal restrictions on its use.

The 1970s saw a surge in the recreational use of cocaine in its powdered form. It was associated with the party scene and glamorized in popular culture. However, the transformation of cocaine into crack cocaine can be traced back to the early 1980s.

The development of crack cocaine is often linked to changes in the drug market and the efforts of drug traffickers to maximize profits. Crack cocaine is created by converting powdered cocaine into a smokable form by mixing it with baking soda and water. This process produces small, solid crystals or “rocks” of crack cocaine, which can be smoked. Smoking crack delivers the drug to the brain more quickly than snorting powdered cocaine, producing a more intense and immediate high.

Common Slang and Nicknames for Crack

Crack goes by many different slang terms and nicknames, with “rock,” “hard,” “base,” or simply “crack” being commonly used. Local lingo may introduce additional street names, making it important to stay informed about regional terms.

Distinguishing Crack from Cocaine

While both substances come from the same plant, crack and cocaine differ significantly. To create crack, cocaine hydrochloride undergoes a chemical process, usually involving the addition of baking soda or ammonia. This transformation results in small, rock-like crystals.

Cocaine is typically in a powdered form, meant for snorting or injecting. In contrast, crack, the freebase form of cocaine, is ideal for smoking. The rapid onset of effects distinguishes crack, providing a quicker and more intense high compared to its powdered counterpart.

What Is Crack Paraphernalia?

Crack use is often accompanied by specific paraphernalia. Steel wool or Chore Boy, used as a filter in the pipe, is a telltale sign. Lighters with sooty residue and small plastic bags may also be present, further indicating crack use. Recognizing these additional items can provide crucial confirmation.

What Does a Crack Pipe Look Like?

Identifying a crack pipe becomes crucial if you’re concerned about a loved one’s potential use of the drug. Crack pipes, with their unique characteristics, come in various shapes and sizes.

A typical crack pipe is a small, cylindrical tube, often made of glass. The color may vary, with a clear or rose crack pipe being most common. You’ll notice the distinctive bulbous end where the crack is heated and vaporized. This end, referred to as the “rose,” is a key feature in identifying a crack pipe.

Alternative Names for Crack Pipes

While “crack pipe” is the commonly recognized term, other names exist in street culture, including, “stem,” “straight shooter,” or simply “pipe.”

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What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Smoking Crack?

Individuals under the influence of crack cocaine may show a range of physical, behavioral, and psychological indicators.

Physical Signs of Crack Addiction:

  • Dilated Pupils: Crack cocaine often causes pupils to dilate, resulting in noticeably larger-than-usual eye size.
  • Increased Energy: Users may display heightened energy levels, restlessness, and hyperactivity.
  • Weight Loss: Persistent crack use can lead to a significant decrease in appetite, resulting in weight loss.
  • Burns on Fingers or Lips: The process of smoking crack involves applying direct heat to the pipe, potentially resulting in burn marks on fingers or lips.
  • Respiratory Issues: Chronic crack smoking can lead to respiratory problems, including coughing, shortness of breath, and chest pain.

Behavioral Signs of Crack Addiction:

  • Erratic Behavior: Under the influence of crack, individuals may display unpredictable and erratic behavior, characterized by impulsivity and poor decision-making.
  • Financial Strain: Maintaining a crack habit can lead to financial instability, with users constantly in need of funds.

Psychological Signs of Crack Abuse:

  • Intense Euphoria: Crack induces a powerful sense of euphoria, often accompanied by increased confidence and talkativeness.
  • Paranoia: Users may experience heightened paranoia and anxiety, leading to social withdrawal and isolation.

Crack Addiction Treatment at Aliya Health Group

Recovery from crack addiction recovery is possible. At Aliya Health Group, we’re ready to support you or your loved one using one of our addiction treatment programs. Everyone is different, so recovery timelines vary, too. Detox is the first step, and it typically lasts a few days. Things that impact that time include:

  • Length of time crack is used
  • Amount crack taken each time
  • Frequency of use
  • Method used to take crack
  • Presence of underlying medical or mental health issues
  • Other drug abuse or alcohol addiction

The first step in treatment is usually detox, which can last for several days to a week. During detox, you’ll typically experience withdrawal symptoms such as cravings, fatigue, and depression.

After detox, therapy begins, which may last for several weeks to months. Therapy focuses on identifying the underlying causes of addiction and developing coping skills to deal with triggers and cravings. In addition, you’ll participate in group therapy sessions and may receive medication to help manage your symptoms. After completing treatment, it’s best to continue attending support groups and meeting with your therapist on a regular basis to prevent relapse.

Recovery itself is a lengthy process. Many people consider it a lifelong endeavor. That’s why most treatment professionals recommend ongoing therapy, peer support, or groups. If you’ve found a crack pipe in a loved one’s possessions or need help for yourself, Aliya Health Group is here for you.