Author Archives: suboxonert

CBT vs. DBT

Cognitive-behavioral therapy and dialectical behavior therapy are forms of talk therapy that help you address the root causes of your addiction. Doctors use these treatments to help you manage any mental disorders you have. Although there are several similarities, there are also differences between CBT vs. DBT that distinguish each type of therapy.

 Let’s take a closer look at cognitive behavioral therapy vs dialectical behavior therapy and how they benefit you in addiction recovery. 

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

Your addiction is a result of negative thoughts and behavior patterns that create a vicious mental cycle. Your therapist uses CBT in Austin Texas to help you identify these negative thoughts. Once you know why you are addicted to drugs or alcohol, you can restructure self-defeating thoughts and replace them with positive and healthy thoughts.

This shift in thought will also create a change in behavior. Granted, it takes time for this shift to take place; however, with ongoing therapy and other forms of treatment, you will notice an improvement in your mindset.

Core principles of CBT include:

  • Exploring your negative thoughts and behaviors
  • Making the connection between your thoughts and your addiction
  • Retraining your mind to embrace positive thoughts and beliefs
  • Creating positive behaviors that replace negative behaviors 

Cognitive behavioral therapy can be implemented in both individual and group therapy settings. 

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)

One of the main differences in CBT vs. DBT is that cognitive-behavioral therapy focuses more on changing your mindset by identifying the root of your negativity. Dialectical behavior therapy focuses more on controlling your emotions and how you react to situations or circumstances. You start by accepting your feelings and receiving validation for those feelings from your therapist. 

Learning to accept the way you feel about your life is a significant first step toward recovery. In essence, your emotional walls come down.

Core principles in DBT include:

  • Accepting that your feelings are real and valid
  • Learning to control your emotions in particular situations
  • Developing problem-solving skills to cope with your disorder

How CBT vs. DBT Works in Addiction Treatment

Both cognitive behavioral therapy vs dialectical behavior therapy are useful during the initial stage of your recovery. Since they are both short-term treatment methods, your therapist uses either to ‘break the ice.’ Once you learn to identify and accept what is going on inside of you, then you are free to move on to more advanced therapy.

Keep in mind that both CBT vs. DBT does not work the same for everyone. How you respond to this type of therapy will determine whether it is successful. The key is to make a connection between your mental state and your addiction. Your therapist guides you along as you come into a greater awareness of what is in your mind.

Contact Promises Austin to Start Your Treatment

To find out more about CBT vs. DBT, contact Promises Austin today. We offer cognitive behavioral therapy and dialectical behavior therapy as a part of our addiction treatment program. To get started with your treatment, call us at 1.844.768.0238.


promises austin logo Promises Austin, a part of the Promises Treatment Centers network, provides mental health and addiction treatment at our treatment center in Austin, Texas. Promises Austin is Joint Commission accredited and provides compassionate treatment for drug and alcohol addiction and a full spectrum of mental health disorders. Learn more about Promises Austin here.

Opioid Crisis in America

The opioid crisis in America is a serious issue that needs to be addressed and talked about. When you are looking for help for yourself or a loved one, reach out to an opioid addiction treatment center that can help. Learn more about the opioid crisis in America and how to find help below.

Opioid Crisis in America

There is an epidemic going on that involves the abuse of pharmaceutical drugs. The opioid crisis in America has been overlooked for too long, especially since it has affected so many people.

How Many People Use Opioids in the US?

According to the 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, over 130 people die from opioid-related overdoses every day. A little over 10 million people abused opioids in 2018. Also in 2018, 2 million were said to have an opioid use disorder. Many opioid users also end up using heroin. A large percentage of people who use heroin started by first abusing prescription opioids. There is also an increase in the abuse of opioids in large cities, along with Midwestern states.

How many people use opioids in the US? Too many. These are huge numbers, to say the least. Where did this problem originate from and how did it start?

Opioid Abuse Origins

Pharmaceutical companies are to blame. In the late 1990s, these companies put medical doctors and specialists at ease by telling them that patients could not become addicted to opioid-based pain killers. This caused medical practitioners to prescribe more of these painkillers in larger numbers than before. When it became obvious that opioids were highly addictive, people were already abusing them, both non-prescription and prescription opioids.

Solutions to the Problem

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) are trying to combat this problem in several ways. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is focusing on improving public health surveillance so that the public has a better understanding of the opioid crisis, improve the need for recovery services and better treatment, improving practices for pain management, promoting drugs that can reverse overdoses, and allowing more opportunities for research on addiction and pain.

The National Institutes of Health is a part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The National Institutes of Health is the head of medical research to find a solution to the opioid crisis. They met with academic research centers and pharmaceutical companies to talk about ways to solve this major public issue. So far, finding ways to prevent overdose, managing chronic pain in safe and non-addictive ways, and using specific medications have been discussed.

Additionally, many drug addiction treatment centers have opened their doors to people struggling with opioid addiction. Detox protocols help each person cleanse their body of opioids safely. Then, evidence-based and holistic addiction therapies help them navigate the roots of addiction. Therapists and counselors help each individual find long-term coping strategies they will need for their recovery. Comprehensive and compassionate support can help to fight the opioid crisis in America.

Getting Professional Help For the Opioid Crisis in America

Lucida Treatment Center, located in beautiful Lantana, Florida, offers many programs and therapies as part of their comprehensive addiction treatment. At Lucida, each individual receives a customized care protocol for their specific needs. Therapies and programs at Lucida Treatment Center include:

You do not have to let addiction control your life any longer. Let us at Lucida Treatment Center in Lantana, Florida help. Contact us at 1.866.947.7299 so that we can get you started on one of our treatment programs.


Opioid Tolerance Major Concern for Doctors Treating Patients with Chronic Pain

Patients under chronic pain management care with their doctor should pay close attention to the FDA warning on the labels of their medications. When you see what is known as the “Black Box” warning on a medication, this indicates the prescription drug may have serious adverse effects. Opioid-induced tolerance is becoming increasingly commonplace and doctors are very concerned about patients increasing the dosage of their medications over time. Hyperalgesia and opioid-induced tolerance are both conditions that seem to result from the long-term use of such opiate-based prescription drugs as OxyContin, Vicodin, hydrocodone and Methadone. The “Black Box” warning on opiate-based drugs means the drug has been thoroughly studied and its effects documented, and approximately 61 percent of all physicians have made note of a concern about adverse affects such as tolerance or dependency risks.

There are many risks associated with chronic pain management and the use of pain killers such as oxycodone over a long-term period. Long-term use may lead to physical changes in opioid receptors on the surfaces of cells. These receptors may experience “desensitization,” which causes the patient to feel more pain and produces the need for an increased dosage of the narcotic to get the same level of relief they once experienced. Increased tolerance to opiate-based medications is one of the first indications of a developing addiction, and anyone experiencing this should speak with their health care professional.

Recent research is beginning to show that over-stimulation of NMDA (N-methyl-D-aspartate) receptors through the chronic use of opiate drugs leads to the development of increased sensitivity to pain (hyperalgesia) and reduced pain-relief from opiates, even when the dosage is increased. In some cases of hyperalgesia, the pain can spread beyond the original pain site. NMDA-receptor activation is also associated with a variety of conditions such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease as well.

Michael Lowenstein, who developed The Waismann Method of opiate detoxification , which uses heavy sedation to help detoxify patients rapidly from their drug dependency, encourages anyone being prescribed pain killers to become familiar with the many dangers of chronic use. Opiate tolerance can develop quickly and these powerful drugs taken to manage pain should be monitored carefully by a physician who understands the need to balance pain relief against the risks of developing addiction or hyperalgesia.

Women Opium Addicts in Afghanistan: The Hidden Numbers

For a number of months now, news channels throughout the world have been reporting on the drugs problems running rampant in Afghanistan. We know clearly that this is a problem among men, both young and old. Now, a new Independent report highlights the hidden addicts – mothers.

Opium is readily available in Afghanistan and too often, individuals try and treat themselves when pain issues arise. Aside from legitimate use, however, a number of Afghanistan citizens pursue the use of opium drugs to escape life, or simply because they have nothing else to do.

It is estimated that one million Afghan adults are addicted to illegal drugs. This is the statistic available from the latest United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime survey. The statistic suggests that 8 percent of the adult population is addicted, which is twice the global average.

For mothers in Afghanistan, too many are dependent on outlawed and highly addictive painkillers because they cannot access medicines or medical help. Opium paste is often a target. While the substance is banned, it can be purchased under the counter at small shops in nearly every bazaar. The paste is used to treat pain such as that incurred during childbirth. Too quickly, addiction sets in.

Currently, Afghanistan is the largest opium producer in the world, producing 90 percent of the world’s supply of opium and heroin. Southern Afghanistan accounts for 87 percent of production in the country, with the bulk coming from Kandahar and Helmand provinces.

Throughout the country, opium use has increased by 53 percent since 2005 and the proportion of heroin users has increased by 140 percent due to the cheap availability of the drugs. The true number of addicted women is likely to be much larger.

Help or Just Another Way to Feed the Problem

The very drug that abusers are being prescribed to kick the habit is also increasingly linked to overdose deaths in the United States.

According to a recent article, a branch of the Department of Health was cited as saying one in ten overdoses are from the use of methadone. Methadone is often one of the drugs given in drug rehabilitation centers to help addicts detox and is also used as a pain killer treatment.

Methadone is becoming one of the drugs that addicts covet and will steal to get, as well as a cause of additional health problems. So this begs the question, why is a drug that is now known to have such adverse reactions and has such addictive potential still a part of drug detox?

Could it be a case that the positives outweigh the negatives? With the number of overdose deaths on the rise due to drug overdose and the rise in substance abuse addictions, this treatment could provide the opportunity for an addict to detox off of a substance that has taken over his/her life.

There are no full-proof ways to kick a drug habit, but methadone has long been one of the treatments used as addicts are weaned off their addictive substance.

Methodone has been an important part of rehab treatment for some individuals. As treatment options continue to expand and are being developed, perhaps there will be new options for patients that won’t have the potential to be as addictive.

Study Finds Depression High Among Low-Income Urban Mothers

Depression doesn’t tend to play favorites on who it can impact, but some individuals are more prone to infliction due to their surroundings. According to new research featured in the Science Daily, more than half of low-income urban mothers met the criteria for depression diagnosis at some point between two weeks and 14 months after giving birth.

This finding is according to research conducted by the University of Rochester Medical Center and is the first study to describe the prevalence of depression among low-income urban mothers. These individuals were attending well-child care visits and were diagnosed during an interview.

According to researchers, the screening tools have high accuracy for identifying depression, although cutoff scores may need to be altered to identify depression more accurately among low-income urban mothers. Findings revealed that 56 percent of the mothers met the criteria for diagnosis of a major or minor depressive disorder after a diagnostic interview.

“This is an unexpected, very high proportion to meet diagnostic criteria for depression,” said Linda H. Chaudron, M.D., associate professor of Psychology, Pediatrics and of Obstetrics and Gynecology in Science Daily.

“This may be a group at high risk for depression. The message of this study is that pediatricians and other clinicians who work with low-income urban mothers have multiple screening tools that are easy to use and accurate. These tools can help clinicians identify mothers with depression so they can be referred for help.”

Clinical depression can occur in new mothers when depressive feeling persist or worsen. Symptoms include insomnia, persistent sadness, lack of interest in nearly all activity, anxiety, change in appetite, persistent feelings of guilt and thoughts of harming oneself or the baby.

Heroin Use on Rise in Communities Around America

Heroin is becoming more deadly as it becomes the addictive drug of choice in our communities across America, according to a recent news article. Addicts are desperate for cheaper ways to get high than prescription drugs offer.

Experts are seeing fatalities and overdoses on the rise in almost every single region in the U.S.

Addicts are seeking the most powerful fix and heroin is popping up in areas that it has rarely before been seen. Ohio officials say heroin drug overdoses have increased by 25 percent in a one year period, from 2008 to 2009 and continue to rise.

Just last April, a Washington community had seven die from a heroin shipment in just five short days. St. Louis officials reported that heroin killed over 300 people in just two years.

The CDC has compiled data from 2009 death certificates and found that heroin has killed almost 3,500 Americans than just one decade ago. That is nearly twice the amount of ten years ago.

One statistic showed that heroin is now a “multi-generational” threat and is becoming much more deadly to those under the age of 30.

In 2009, one third of the over 3,000 heroin deaths happened with young people under 30 years old. Ninety-three deaths were teenagers and the bulk of deaths were clustered with people between the age groups of 30’s to 50‘s.

Unfortunately, experts report there isn’t a “typical” heroin user. They range from all different backgrounds: poor, rich, all education levels and various ages. Federal surveys from last year show that almost three percent of all high school aged students have tried heroin.

Suffolk to Use Suboxone to Fight Heroin Addiction

Long Island has seen a growing number of young addicts, so Suffolk County, NY, officials say they are creating a new public initiative to combat the problem. Suboxone, the anti-opiate addiction drug known generically as buprenorphine, will start to be dispensed at county clinics.

“The Suboxone and ongoing counseling will provide a hope to some for whom it didn’t exist before,” said Thomas MacGilvray, director of Suffolk County’s Community Mental Hygiene Services. He explained that the current funding of 350K will support only 60 patients who will be charged on a sliding scale basis. The program may be expanded if the demand overwhelms the new program.

The rise in heroin abuse and addiction has shocked Long Island officials. Suffolk treatment centers saw a fivefold increase in admissions of heroin-addicted adolescents between 2006 and 2009.

The program differs from other public programs that distribute Suboxone because they will be emphasizing counseling as part of the program. Studies show that the use of replacement therapy in the treatment of opiate addiction is far more effective when counseling and other forms of treatment are also included.

How to Get Through Detox

By Suzanne Kane

If you want to get clean and get on with your life free of drugs and alcohol, you first have to get through detoxification or detox. No treatment facility or center will treat you with drugs and/or alcohol still in your body. It’s as simple as that. What is detox? What should you be prepared for? More importantly, can you survive it? Here are some answers.

What Detox Isn’t
First, let’s dispel some myths about detox. Contrary to some pretty scary movie depictions, a detox center isn’t a dreary, dark place. Nor is it like bedlam in an insane asylum. And toss aside any mental images of grim-looking doctors and overcrowded hallways with screaming and wailing patients. Detox isn’t any of these.

Detox 101
Boiling it down to its pure essence, to detox means to rid your body of all harmful substances. In this case, that means the toxins from drugs and/or alcohol. There are actually three phases of detox:

  • Getting the drugs/alcohol out of the system.
  • Physically getting clean. After cleansing the body of drugs, the patient needs proper nutrition, diet, and physical exercise. The purpose is to restore the body to a more natural, balanced state.
  • Detoxing emotionally. It’s important to treat the emotional dependence on drugs and/or alcohol, which may be as powerful as the physical dependence.

Detox is the first step in quitting drugs and alcohol and getting clean and sober. Get it in your head right now: Without therapy, detox alone won’t allow you to keep off either drugs or alcohol.

Some people who have only recently begun drug use, or who use drugs infrequently, of less toxicity, or certain types of drugs, may be able to quit “cold turkey.” That is, they just stop taking the drugs or alcohol and don’t seek any support or treatment. This rarely works. Why? Because while they may temporarily stop using, they haven’t treated the underlying causes of why they began in the first place, and they haven’t developed any coping skills to avoid getting into the same situation again.

The more time you’ve been using, the more frequently you use, and the type of drug you use all factor into what kind of detox you can expect to experience. There are withdrawal symptoms associated with detox from any drug or alcohol dependence or abuse. Simply put, the longer you’ve been at it, the tougher time you’ll have to go through. That isn’t to say that your withdrawal symptoms can’t be managed. The goal of licensed, professional drug and alcohol treatment centers with medically-supervised detox units is to make you as comfortable as possible during the detox period.

Can you do it on your own? Some people can, but it’s not recommended. Detox can cause intense symptoms. During withdrawal, addicts should not undergo detox without medical supervision. Why would you want to subject yourself to the unpleasantness and responsibility? Besides, the outcome is pretty certain: You’ll only fall back into your former drug-using ways without treatment. Better to allow the professionals to help you get on the healing path.

How Alcohol and Drugs Affect Detox
Here are some broad categories of addiction and how detox is impacted. It is not all-inclusive and is only meant as an overview:

Alcohol – acts as a stimulant and a depressant. It wreaks havoc on the brain and nerve connections. It’s also physically addicting. The need is physical, and it’s real. Your body has become so used to alcohol that not having it makes you ill. Suddenly quitting alcohol can cause convulsions, hallucinations, and even death from heart failure.

Cocaine and Amphetamines – These drugs stimulate the brain’s “pleasure center” by increasing output of the neurotransmitter dopamine. When stimulants are abruptly discontinued, the output of dopamine stops. Fatigue and sleep disturbances result. Coming down from cocaine means you may experience depression, agitation, drug cravings, anxiety, crashing, hyperactivity, hallucinations, and even paranoia.

Tranquilizers – Benzodiazepines such as Ativan, Valium, and Xanax work just the opposite of stimulants. When these drugs are suddenly stopped, the person becomes jittery, has problems sleeping, and becomes shaky. Nerves become extremely sensitive to any type of stimulus.

Opiates – Drugs such as heroin, morphine, Vicodin, and OxyContin produce very strong physical withdrawal symptoms. These intense, painful, and potentially fatal withdrawal symptoms must be medically supervised during detox.

Things to Keep in Mind During Detox
Try to keep a sense of humor. That sounds ludicrous, given the fact that some detox can be pretty scary (heroin, for example), but you have to keep the end goal in mind: You need to be free of drugs in order to begin treatment. And treatment is the ultimate means to an end: successful recovery.

Take it one day at a time. For some drugs, detox may be a matter of 1 to 2 days, while more damaging or long-term drug abuse may take 3 to 5 days or longer.

If you are offered medications to help make detox easier and less painful—or to reduce drug cravings—take it. There are new medications approved for treating withdrawal symptoms that are not addictive. The sooner you get through detox, the sooner you can begin treatment to overcome your addiction or dependence.

Focus on long-term goals. It’s not too soon to begin crafting your vision for the way you’d like your life to be in recovery. You’ll be doing lots of planning when you’re in treatment, but for now, it’s helpful to have something constructive and positive to think about.

Stick to it. If you give up and leave detox, not only will you be right back where you started, but you may even start using more. Think of it this way: less than a week to get drugs out of your system is a small price to pay if you’re really serious about getting clean.

Ask for help. Don’t feel that you have to go it alone. While detox is a uniquely singular experience, since only you know what you’re feeling at any given time, make sure you communicate any physical or psychological symptoms to the professionals attending to you. Again, their goal is to help you through this so that you can begin treatment.

Get enough sleep. One of the withdrawal symptoms that is hard to overcome is the inability to sleep. Frankly, insomnia may plague you for a while even into treatment. Take advantage of medically prescribed, safe medications to enable you to sleep. Later on, in treatment, you’ll be able to participate in yoga, meditation, and other means of helping you to relax so you can sleep without interruption.

Drink lots of fluids. Your body needs to flush out the toxins, especially from the liver. The best hydration is water, followed by fresh juices.

Why Bother to Detox?
You can’t get into any drug and alcohol treatment program if you don’t first detox. Your body has to be free of drugs and/or alcohol for a period of time, usually 48 hours. If you continue taking drugs and/or alcohol and never detox and go into treatment, you may die from accidental overdose or accumulated physical deterioration. Most of all, you should detox so that you can begin to heal.

Is There Any Guarantee?
The only guarantee you can count on is the fact that if you commit yourself 100% to getting clean and to abstaining from drugs, when you enter detox and stay with the program, you’ll be on your way to the next stage of the process: treatment. If you can believe and trust in yourself, and accept no excuses that you may tell yourself when the going gets tough, you can be sure you will not only get through detox, but you’ll be a stronger person because of it.

What else is certain? There are people who love you and people who will watch over and care for you. Your friends and family will be rooting for you to succeed. And the professional staff of the drug and alcohol treatment facility will be on your side as well, assisting you with compassion, expertise, and dedication.

What are you waiting for? Get into detox now. It’s the first step to the rest of your life in recovery.

Detox Drug, Suboxone Being Smuggled into Prisons for Quick High

Suboxone is traditionally used to treat patients coming down off heroin and other opiate addictions. Because the withdrawal symptoms are so strong, those wishing to detox often need chemical help. The withdrawals coming off Suboxone are much less intense and can help ease the transition from illicit opiates to a more controlled alternative.

Usually only health professionals working in drug treatment facilitates have access to the drug. Somehow the drug has found its way into the hands of the public who are smuggling it into their relatives and friends in prison. Two incidents of misuse have recently been reported – one in Pennsylvania and the other in New Jersey.

In the Pennsylvania incident referred to as “Operation Postage Stamp,” authorities gained information about an illegal plot to smuggle Suboxone into the prison via intercepted calls to prison inmates. In addition to pill format, Suboxone comes in the form of a thin strip similar to breath strips that can be purchased at the grocery store. Interestingly enough, Reckitt Benckiser, the manufacturer of Suboxone, said that this form of the drug is supposed to control misuse as the paper-thin film cannot be crushed or snorted like the pill forms.

The attorney general’s office released a statement that three letters were seized, which had Suboxone hidden underneath the postage stamps. The incident led to the arrest of five inmates who were charged with trying to possess a controlled substance. Six more were arrested for furnishing the drug, and they were charged with attempting to distribute a controlled substance.

What happened in New Jersey was very similar. Inmates coaxed family members and friends to send the drug via coloring books so it could be licked off the pages. Prison officials there were informed by an inmate in February that the drug would be arriving in the form of coloring books and that they would be able to identify it by its orange color. Staff members there say that it is not unusual for inmates to receive coloring pages and drawings on a regular basis – but it was the orange color and the inmate tip that raised red flags.

The scheme in New Jersey has left five individuals – three prisoners and two women who sent the coloring books – facing charges. Authorities say that the tops of the pages read, “To Daddy,” and the use of children in the plot has left many disgusted. Gary Schaffer, Cape May County Sheriff says that he has not seen anything else that compares to it in his 38 year career.

These individuals need to understand that they are not doing themselves or their loved ones any favors by providing these drugs. They are putting their own lives and futures on the line by doing so. Unless they wish to face a future incarcerated themselves, they need to think twice about “helping” their friends and family in this manner.