Note: These PET scans compare the brain of an individual with a history of cocaine use disorder (middle and right) to the brain of an individual without a history of cocaine use (left). The person who has had a cocaine use disorder has lower levels of the D2 dopamine receptor (depicted in red) in the striatum one month (middle) and four months (right) after stopping cocaine use compared to the non-user. The level of dopamine receptors in the brain of the cocaine user are higher at the 4-month mark (right), but have not returned to the levels observed in the non-user (left).
Like cocaine, crystal meth acts on the dopamine level in the brain but provides an additional touch of mimicking norepinephrine. The result? Neurons release more of both, while training your brain to need more in order to survive. The hangover and withdrawals last days and can break down a person mentally and physically. Addicts suffer psychosis, hallucinations, memory loss, severe depression and sometimes suicide.12 Addiction and Recovery: A How to Guide | Shawn Kingsbury | TEDxUIdaho
The most important thing to consider after alcohol rehabilitation is having an aftercare program that allows you continued treatment and a safe environment to maintain sobriety. It is also important that you follow suggestions to help you continue to maintain constant sobriety. Suggestions can include attendance at Alcoholics Anonymous, SMART recovery or another community or church groups, addiction counseling, or living in a halfway house. Finding a safe environment to live in while entering back in to the normal realm of every day life is imperative.

It is also estimated that around a third of all older adults with alcohol problems developed them in later life for the first time. It has been suggested that factors such as social isolation, poor health, bereavement, and boredom all contribute to alcohol abuse in older people. Some older adults may begin self-medicating with alcohol when experiencing chronic pain due to age-related health problems.


For many people struggling with addiction, the toughest step toward recovery is the very first one: recognizing that you have a problem and deciding to make a change. It’s normal to feel uncertain about whether you’re ready to make a change, or if you have what it takes to quit. If you’re addicted to a prescription drug, you may be concerned about how you’re going to find an alternate way to treat a medical condition. It’s okay to feel torn. Committing to sobriety involves changing many things, including:

All drugs–nicotine, cocaine, marijuana and others–affect the brain’s “reward” circuit, which is part of the limbic system. This area of the brain affects instinct and mood. Drugs target this system, which causes large amounts of dopamine—a brain chemical that helps regulate emotions and feelings of pleasure—to flood the brain. This flood of dopamine is what causes a “high.” It’s one of the main causes of drug addiction. Making the Decision to Get Help - Alcohol Rehab Review
At Gateway Foundation, we employ a variety of addiction therapy services that aid in treatment. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, and Trauma Therapy are some of the most common that our therapists use to help patients begin on the road to recovery. Each of these treatments and therapies is part of a larger overall program, specifically designed for individual patient recovery at one of our 17 drug treatment centers. To speak to someone about treatment at a Gateway Foundation center, call 877.381.6538 today.
Withdrawal. Medications and devices can help suppress withdrawal symptoms during detoxification. Detoxification is not in itself "treatment," but only the first step in the process. Patients who do not receive any further treatment after detoxification usually resume their drug use. One study of treatment facilities found that medications were used in almost 80 percent of detoxifications (SAMHSA, 2014). In November 2017, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted a new indication to an electronic stimulation device, NSS-2 Bridge, for use in helping reduce opioid withdrawal symptoms. This device is placed behind the ear and sends electrical pulses to stimulate certain brain nerves. Also, in May 2018, the FDA approved lofexidine, a non-opioid medicine designed to reduce opioid withdrawal symptoms.
Marital and Family Counseling: Since alcohol abuse often deeply impacts the family of the addict, this type of therapy incorporates spouses and other family members in the treatment process and can play a large role in repairing relationships damaged by the addiction. When done properly, it builds up the patient’s support system and increases the chances for long-term recovery.
Genetics make up about 50% of the risk for alcohol dependence, but they by no means tell the whole story. Genetic history is often hard to distinguish, but if parents are regular heavy drinkers, or they drink to reduce stress and depression, it is likely that their children will grow up believing that these behaviours are normal and possibly harmless. But environmental influence doesn’t come only from the home; peer pressure from friends, colleagues and partners can also encourage new and difficult patterns of drinking which can lead to dependency or co-dependency.

IVRS focuses on helping clients develop insight into the negative role that drugs and alcohol play in their lives. Usually, substance abuse has taken a great toll on family relations, employment, and their health. Many clients have experienced legal problems, lost jobs, failed in school and/or lost their families as a result of drug and alcohol abuse. IVRS teaches clients to live without drugs and alcohol, thus improving the quality of their lives.


What emerges from relationships with poorly defined boundaries is a survival mentality where family members assume roles to help cope with stress. Though these roles can temporarily lessen stress, they increase confusion and anxiety because the underlying issue of the substance use is never directly dealt with. Rehab can help you understand where these boundaries get tangled up and show you ways to keep them healthy.

For many recovering alcoholics, the mental health aspects of treatment are the most important. Improving mental health means helping patients better understand the chronic condition they are suffering from. It means equipping them with the tools they need to control their thoughts and emotions, avoid addictive triggers, and just stay away from alcohol altogether.
Stimulants, such as tobacco, cocaine or prescription amphetamines, stimulate the brain and nervous system, causing increased alertness. Depressants, such as barbiturates and benzodiazepines, slow activity in the brain and nervous system, causing relaxation. Hallucinogens, such as LSD and PCP, drastically disrupt the way the brain and nervous system communicate, causing hallucinations. Rehab: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO)
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