Connection Between Anxiety and Drug Abuse

Connection Between Anxiety and Drug Abuse

Decades of research has shown that anxiety disorders and substance use disorders go hand in hand. Although the connection between anxiety and drug use is not fully understood, experts do know that the rate of co-occurrence cannot be explained away by chance alone.

In other words, anxiety and addiction have a strong connection that needs to be understood. If you or someone you love suffers from addiction and anxiety, it’s important to understand this relationship to have the best chances of recovery.

The Relationship Between Anxiety and Addiction 

The relationship between substance abuse and anxiety is very clear. A number of studies have been conducted to determine how closely the disorders are related. Here are a few statistics to keep in mind about the relationship between anxiety and addiction:

  • Anywhere from 10% to 20% of individuals with any anxiety disorder abuse drugs and alcohol.
  • It’s estimated that anywhere from 10% to 40% of individuals who suffer from alcohol addiction suffer from a panic related anxiety disorder specifically. 

These statistics tell us that there is a strong relationship between anxiety and addiction. These statistics do not tell us if the anxiety occurred first or if the addiction led to anxiety.

However, most individuals who participate in these studies report that they suffered from anxiety before they ever tried alcohol or drugs. This fact seems to suggest that individuals who suffered from anxiety and addiction suffer from anxiety first.

Because of this fact, experts have predicted that addiction normally stems from a form of self-medicating. For example, an individual may suffer from severe panic disorder. As a way to cope with this disorder, they may turn to alcohol, which turns into a full addiction.

To make matters worse, studies have found that prolonged substance use increases anxiety over time. Although the substance may provide temporary relief, its long-term effects are devastating to one’s anxiety disorder. This fact makes anxiety and addiction bidirectional in their relationship. 

Addiction, Anxiety, and Depression 

Anxiety is not the only mental illness frequently found in individuals who suffer from addiction. Depression is another mental illness that often occurs alongside substance use. Much like the relationship between anxiety and addiction, depression is bidirectional with substance abuse.

In other words, many individuals turn to substances in order to soothe depression, but the depression worsens with substance abuse. Individuals can also experience anxiety in addition to addiction and depression.

Dual Diagnosis Treatment for Addiction and Anxiety 

Whenever a person suffers from a mental illness alongside their addiction, they have what is called a dual diagnosis. Dual diagnosis means that they have a mental illness that co-occurs alongside the addiction. It’s important that individuals who suffer from dual diagnosis receive proper treatment.

Dual diagnosis treatment helps to treat the individual from all fronts, resulting in holistic care. They will receive appropriate and specialized care for their addiction, as well as their mental illness. By treating both diseases, the individual has the best chance of recovery.

Failing to receive dual diagnosis treatment for co-occurring illnesses can be devastating to one’s recovery. Because of the bidirectional nature of co-occurring illnesses, only dealing with one of the illnesses will often lead to unsuccessful results since the other illness exacerbates symptoms.

Get Help from Outpatient LA 

If you or a loved one is suffering from anxiety and addiction, it’s important to get dual diagnosis treatment to heal you from the inside out. Outpatient LA is an outpatient drug rehab that provides specialized care for all patients. 

Contact Outpatient LA today to learn more about our treatment and offerings.

Alcohol Withdrawal Symptom Timeline

Alcohol withdrawal is a condition that occurs whenever an individual with alcohol use disorder significantly reduces or suddenly stops their alcohol consumption. Although some symptoms are nothing more than uncomfortable, others are incredibly dangerous, can expand over several days, and can lead to death. 

It’s important that individuals with alcohol use disorders seek medical detox at the beginning of their recovery. Medical detox will allow the individual to detox safely and as pain-free as possible while working through the detox symptoms. 

The Alcohol Withdrawal Symptom Timeline 

Alcohol withdrawal can start as soon as just 6 hours after the individual’s last drink. Although most people experience alcohol withdrawal for 3 to 5 days after their last use, some individuals can experience withdrawal for 5 to 7 days after their last use.

Knowing the alcohol withdrawal symptom timeline can better help you understand what you are going to face while you detox.

Minor Symptoms: 6-12 Hours After Last Use

Alcohol withdrawal begins with minor symptoms that begin 6 to 12 hours after the last drink. Some of the most common symptoms experienced during this time include:

  • Anxiety 
  • Nausea 
  • Insomnia 
  • Elevated heart rate
  • Elevated body temperature  
  • Rapid breathing 
  • Excessive sweating 
  • Tremors 

Alcoholic Hallucinosis: 12-24 Hours After Last Use 

In severe cases, individuals can start to experience hallucinations while withdrawing. Some individuals can fully see or hear things that are not there. Others may experience intense sensations, such as pins and needles on the skin. Alcoholic hallucinosis is unusual, but it is not often severe.

Alcohol Withdrawal Seizures: 24-48 Hours After Last Use

After the 24-hour mark, alcohol withdrawal symptoms can become much more severe and dangerous. Within 24 to 48 hours of the individual’s last drink, they can begin experiencing seizures. It’s important for individuals to seek medical expertise at this time if they have not already. Not everyone withdrawing will experience seizures.

Delirium Tremens: 48-72 Hours After Last Use

Delirium tremens is the most dangerous side effect of alcohol withdrawal. They can occur 48 to 72 hours after the last drink. Delirium tremens is essentially hyperactive autonomic activity, ultimately leading to cardiac collapse. The mortality rate of delirium tremens is 37%. It’s imperative for you or your loved one to seek medical treatment if delirium tremens are being experienced.

Like the two symptoms above, not everyone withdrawing from alcohol will experience delirium tremens. Even so, it’s imperative to get medical treatment while withdrawing in case you are someone who experiences this dangerous withdrawal symptom.

Minor Symptoms Continue: 72-120 Hours After Last Use

For most individuals, alcoholic withdrawal seizures and delirium tremens happen between 3 and 5 days after the last drink. For individuals who do not have these symptoms exactly, the 3-day mark tends to be the most severe time of withdrawal. Once the peak is reached, the severe symptoms will subside into more mild symptoms until withdrawal is completely over.

Factors That Impact Withdrawal Timeline 

Alcohol withdrawal is not the same for all patients. Several factors impact the timeline and how these symptoms are experienced by the individual. The following factors can impact how long withdrawal takes and how severe it will be:

  • Frequency of drinking 
  • Length of time of drinking 
  • Amount consumed while drinking
  • Medical history 
  • Co-occurring illness 
  • Other substances in the system 

Medical Detox 

Because of how severe symptoms are when withdrawing from alcohol, always withdraw under the care of medical professionals. Medical detox will allow you to detox safely to ensure success, and it is the first step in long-term treatment

If you or someone you love is suffering from alcoholism and needs outpatient care, contact Outpatient LA to learn more about receiving addiction help right now.

Why Choose a LGBTQ Benzo Rehab Center in Southern California

LGBTQ Benzo Rehab Center in Southern California

Individuals of the LGBTQ community are more at risk of substance abuse than the population as a whole. In fact, studies have found that 20% to 30% of the LGBTQ population abuses substances, whereas only 9% of the population can say the same.

The good news is that specialized LGBTQ treatment centers have been established for individuals who belong to the LGBTQ community and are struggling from addiction.

These treatment centers provide a safe place for individuals to receive the treatment they need alongside other individuals just like them. All the while, these centers provide specialized treatment for members of the community.

Addiction Within the LGBTQ Community 

Experts suggest that members of the LGBTQ community suffer from higher rates of substance abuse due to the number of societally imposed obstacles they face. Some challenges these individuals often face include:

  • Stigmatization or discrimination based on sexual orientation.
  • Emotional abuse.
  • Threats, public humiliation, and hate crimes.
  • Shame or rejection from family.

Furthermore, many individuals of the LGBTQ community develop co-occurring disorders as a result of living a “closeted” life. Common emotional disorders in the community include generalized anxiety level, depression, and self-harming tendencies. These diseases can exacerbate addiction. 

Individuals within the LGBTQ community also have higher risk of health issues than heterosexual individuals. For example, individuals may be suffering from compulsive sexual behavior, HIV related anxiety, or sexual abuse, which may contribute to the substance abuse disorder. 

Due to all of these obstacles, experts believe that LGBTQ individuals often turn to alcohol or drugs as a way to self-medicate. This self-medication leads to ineffective results and serious addictions, such as benzo addiction, which requires medical intervention and treatment

Why Choose a LGBTQ Benzo Rehab Center in Southern California for Treatment 

For years, the only treatment that LGBTQ community members received for their addiction was regular treatment centers. Although these centers are reputable and offer great medical help, they don’t always offer specialized treatments for individuals within the LGBTQ community. 

LGBTQ individuals especially need specialized treatment. Within specialized LGBTQ rehab facilities, individuals can get the medically approved treatment they need to face their addiction. At the same time, they can receive medical help that targets problems commonly faced by the community.

Because LGBTQ individuals are at such risk of dual diagnosis, LGBTQ rehab facilities often offer a variety of personalized treatment options to treat all diagnosed conditions. The dual diagnosis treatment, for instance, can help target anxiety, depression, and other mental illnesses alongside addiction.

Importantly, attending an LGBTQ benzo rehab center in Southern California also allows you to find a support group of individuals like you. With these peers, you can grow to learn healthier coping mechanisms and begin living the life you’ve always dreamt of alongside those who support you the most. 

LGBTQ Benzo Rehab Center in Southern California

If you are a member of the LGBTQ community and are suffering from benzo addiction, it’s important to get the help you need. Select a LGBTQ benzo rehab center in Southern California for comprehensive help.

Outpatient LA is one option to consider. We offer comprehensive outpatient care and can even provide specialized LGBTQ treatment for members of the community. All of our treatments are backed by medical approaches and empathetic staff members.

All the while, Outpatient LA has beautiful facilities for you to visit. Because we are based in LA, you get to enjoy the beautiful scenery, all while receiving the medical treatment and intervention you need.

With the help of Outpatient LA, you can begin your road to sobriety on the right foot. Contact Outpatient LA today to learn more about our treatment options for members of the LGBTQ community.

Grateful Addicts in Recovery: Why Gratitude Helps

Grateful Addicts in Recovery

While on your path to recovery, it’s important to focus on your mind and perspective on life while you focus on improving your physical health. In fact, it’s highly important to focus on gratitude specifically since grateful addicts in recovery tend to have better outcomes.

What Is Gratitude? 

Gratitude is a word that many people hear, but don’t fully understand. Whenever someone is thankful for something, they appreciate things done for them and the world around them. Gratitude goes a step further by incorporating action into the thanks. 

Gratitude isn’t just about appreciating gifts, but it is also about repaying them or paying them forward. In other words, gratitude is whenever you show your thankfulness to the outside world.

Although gratitude may seem simple, it is something that many people forget about, but it’s imperative for everyone to show gratitude for a happy and well-meaning life. 

Why Gratitude Is Important for Recovery

Gratitude is especially important for addicts in their recovery. Studies have found that practicing gratefulness helps to alleviate symptoms of anxiety and depression. It can also help you to stay motivated when improving yourself and becoming a better person. 

Because addicts need all the help they can get when it comes to anxiety, depression, and motivation, gratitude can make a huge difference in one’s recovery. How exactly does gratitude make a difference in recovery, though? 

Part of the reason why gratitude is important for recovery is that it transforms your neurobiology. By practicing gratitude consistently, your brain begins releasing more dopamine and serotonin neurotransmitters. These neurotransmitters help you feel better so you can continue your recovery.

Another reason why gratitude is so important for recovery is that it helps to increase optimism. Whenever you are in recovery, it may feel overwhelming trying to overcome all of your demons at once. By being grateful, you can stay optimistic and focus on the challenges at hand.

Not to mention, gratitude can help you repair old relationships and build new relationships. That way, you have a healthy support system that is based on trust and respect. 

How to Become a Grateful Recovering Addict 

Becoming a grateful recovering addict can be difficult. Because gratitude is something that many people know nothing about, it’s difficult to begin practicing gratitude. Even so, there are little things you can do to become one of the grateful addicts in recovery.

Most importantly, try to give more than you receive every single day. Something as simple as preparing coffee for a friend is an act of gratitude. So too is writing letters or supporting someone who is going through a hard time. Always try to give when you can. 

You can also practice gratitude by keeping a gratitude journal. In a gratitude journal, you will write things you are grateful for every single day. A gratitude journal only takes a few minutes to fill out, but it can make a huge difference in your mood.

Whenever you are feeling under the weather, it’s important to focus on the good things in life and the things you have. For example, you may feel down one day because of your addiction. Instead of focusing on the negatives, focus on the positives, such as your wonderful family, or the beautiful weather outside. 

Contact Outpatient LA for Help 

Any of the grateful addicts in recovery will tell you that gratitude is something that is developed over time. If you are an addict struggling with recovery, get the help you need from Outpatient LA.

Outpatient LA can help you face your addiction head-on, all while teaching you effective strategies for expressing gratitude in your day-to-day life. Contact us today for more information.