February-Marijuana Awareness Month: Breaking Cannabis Down

Marijuana is the subject of a passionate and long-standing debate, with many false or exaggerated claims made by individuals on both sides. Whether you’re pro or anti, an understanding of the facts is essential.

In light of February being Marijuana Awareness Month and ongoing legalization efforts, we have compiled a series of points to help promote healthy discussion and education surrounding this controversial topic.

Increase your knowledge of alternate and street names for marijuana:

Alternate Names For Marijuana

  • February, Marijuana Awareness Month - Breaking Cannabis DownWeed
  • Dope
  • Cannabis
  • Ganja
  • Grass
  • Herb
  • Bud
  • Mary Jane
  • Pot
  • Reefer
  • Skunk
  • Tea
  • Loud

Marijuana is a brown and green mix of leaves, seeds, stems and dried flowers from the hemp plant Cannabis sativa. The drug’s main active chemical is THC, which quickly reaches the brain and other organs via bloodstream.

How THC Affects The Brain

THC affects specific areas of the brain, called cannabinoid receptors. Ordinarily, cannabinoid receptors are activated by chemicals native to the neural communication system, that are semi-responsible for brain function and development.  Use of marijuana over activates this system, resulting in memory difficulties, impaired coordination and difficulty with problem solving and basic thought processes.

Is Marijuana Addictive?

Contrary to popular belief, marijuana can be addictive; affecting the brain’s reward centers in ways similar to those found with more “serious” substances. When use escalates to a daily affair, addiction treatment may be needed to help kick the habit.

Health Effects Of Marijuana

In addition to potential effects on mental health and cognitive development, marijuana smoke can irritate the lungs of its users. Cannabis smokers have been found to develop many of the same respiratory issues as tobacco smokers, including daily phlegm production and cough, increased risk of chest infection, and more frequent acute chest illness.

Is marijuana worthy of demonization? Many would argue not. However, the potential issues associated with long-term usage should have many thinking twice before lighting up.

If you or someone you love is struggling with an addiction to marijuana, and are interested in peaceful, ranch-style treatment centers in Texas, the recovery specialists at Touchstone Ranch Recovery Center are here to help! Pick up the phone today and call 888-988-5128. Let our team get you back on track to the healthy and happy lifestyle you’ve been missing.

What Philip Seymour Hoffman’s Tragic Death Can Teach Us About Addiction

The passing of actor Philip Seymour Hoffman serves as a reminder of the dangers faced by recovering addicts. Though there has been much speculation, what is clear is that Hoffman has been abstinent for many years following an addiction to heroin in his earlier years.

It’s Easy To Cast Blame Towards An Addict

What Philip Seymour Hoffman's Tragic Death Can Teach Us About Addiction

Courtesy of: www.wallchips.com

Hoffman’s road to stardom was riddled with choice and intent. These factors, however, were not at the root of the actor’s demise. Still, it’s easy for many to cast blame towards an individual whose death stems from heroin use. How, people say, could such a talented person risk his life and career with such an awful decision? How could someone prioritize drugs over family?

Statements like these only echo years of misunderstanding surrounding addiction and recovery, and are simply off target. The fact of the matter is: Choice has nothing to do with addiction – a disease that affects the brain, and slowly takes hold of an individual.

Choosing To Seek Treatment

Once people decide to stop using, whether on their own or with the aid of a drug addiction treatment facility, the tolerance developed throughout their use history subsides. Previously acceptable doses become lethal. The compulsive nature of cocaine, alcohol and heroin use impairs their judgment and ability to moderate.

The actor completed detox in 2013 to address a prescription drug problem that escalated to mild heroin use. Hoffman reportedly only used heroin for a week’s period before realizing he needed help.

Could Relapse Happen To Me?

Hoffman’s death hits home for many of us at the Touchstone Ranch equine therapy center. The shock and sorrow of losing a gifted actor quickly gives way to more personal questions: What does this mean for me, the recovering addict? Is my sobriety easier to lose than I acknowledge? Could this happen to me?

Unfortunately, relapse is a threat we all must address at some point in recovery. Whether you’ve enjoyed years of sobriety or are currently researching rehab centers in Texas for the first time, the struggle to maintain sobriety is one we all must live with. Though an addict can be in recovery, their addiction can only be managed. One step forward… one day at a time.

If you or a loved one are ready to start the healthy and happy lifestyle of long-term recovery, contact Touchstone Recovery Center now at 888-988-5128

What Is Dual Diagnosis And How Is It Treated?

What Is Dual Diagnosis?

If you’ve ever posed the question, “What is dual diagnosis”, you’re not alone. When it comes to rehabilitation, this area often causes confusion due to the conflicting nature of the disease at hand.

What Is Dual Diagnosis | Dual Diagnosis Treatment | Texas Ranch RehabIndividuals with a drug addiction and coexisting mental illness are categorized as dual diagnosis. Dual diagnosis rehabilitation generally requires intense therapy coupled with pharmacological treatment and continued post-rehabilitative care. When considering a treatment facility, it’s important to consider location, costs and reputation to ensure a healthy and happy recovery.

The History Of Dual Diagnosis

“Dual diagnosis” is a term that came into popular use in 1984. This was in response to new research showing that the majority of patients diagnosed with mental illnesses were also struggling with alcohol or drug addiction.

Breaking Down Dual Diagnosis

  • Alternate Names – Dual Diagnosis is also referred to as “co-occurring” or “co-existing” disorder or diagnosis.
  • Mental Disorders – Some people develop mental disorders following a prolonged history of substance abuse. Others self-medicate existing mental disorders; resulting in addiction.
  • Detox Treatment for dual diagnosis begins with detoxification. This process serves to eliminate toxins from the body to ensure a clean slate moving into mental illness treatment.
  • Common Illnesses – Common mental illnesses seen in dual diagnosis include, but are not limited to: personality disorders, depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety and schizophrenia.
  • Family – Family involvement is crucial to the recovery process. In addition to family counseling, loved ones must cater to the special needs of patients following discharge.

Theories Of The Causes Of Dual Diagnosis

Many specialists have suggested nerve deficiencies to be indicative of an existing dual disorder. Dual diagnosis has also been linked to patients with a history of inner city living, self-medication, physical or sexual abuse, parental neglect and poverty.

Treatment For Dual Diagnosis

Treatment through a provider like Touchstone Ranch Recovery Center, who specializes in personalized therapy for both alcohol and drug dependency and mental illness, is the most effective means of achieving health and recovery.

If you or your loved one is struggling with dual diagnosis, Touchstone Ranch Recovery Center is the place to turn. Pick up the phone today and call 888-988-5128, and let our team of specialists guide you in the freedom of recovery!

Read More About Our Dual Diagnosis Recovery Program

Residential Treatment – How Do I Know If It’s Right For Me?

Residential treatment centers offer rehabilitative care for addiction on an inpatient basis – meaning that enrolled patients live at a designated facility throughout their initial recovery. In this entry we will delve into the basics of residential rehabilitation to enlighten our readers.

Intake At A Residential Facility

Upon arrival at Touchstone, patients complete residential paperwork in regard to insurance and permission-to-treat forms. A professional facility staff member will review the paperwork and individual case to determine a personalized plan of care that will appropriately fit the patient’s individual needs.

Residential Treatment Centers - How Do I Know If It’s Right For Me

Co-occurring disorders, in which an individual has both substance abuse and mental health issues, are quite common. As such, counselors will generally delve into mental health histories, including present medications and symptoms of the patient. This assessment serves to determine how motivated the patient is to recover alongside any triggers or issues that may complicate the progression, including social, employment and financial issues.

However, every case is unique and staff realizes this though this is a tough time for the patient, it is also a triumphant time and each person will be treated with courtesy and respect.

Detox At A Residential Treatment Center

Medically monitored detox is often required for alcohol and other substances (including tranquilizers, heroin and opiate pain medications) to ensure a safe and healthy transition into recovery. Without proper, professional care and detox, serious health issues may result. The detoxification process is usually short-term, depending on the patient and the severity of their addiction. Patients are often offered safe medications during this period to help ease withdrawal symptoms and make the experience more comfortable.

Stay Time And Helpful Tools At A Residential Rehab Center

Patients looking for residential treatment centers in Texas, like at Touchstone Ranch Recovery Center can expect our care to be comprehensive. Stay-time varies per patient, but usually ranges anywhere from 30 – 90 days, with extended programs allowing patients to obtain increased privileges over time. Recovery Ranch offers time away from things, places and people that may trigger use. In addition to family and group and individual counseling, our therapeutic community provides a structured environment and tools with which to build a new, grounded and drug-free lifestyle.

Interested In The Residential Treatment Center At Touchstone Ranch Recovery Center?

If you or someone you know is struggling with an addiction to drugs or alcohol, you can count on Touchstone Ranch Recovery Center to provide you with the care and attention you deserve. Call today at 888-988-5128, and let our team of addiction specialists help you back on track towards the health, happy lifestyle you’re after.

Read More 4 Advantages to Seeking Addiction Treatment from Ranch Style Rehab Centers

How Will Obama Care Affect Addiction Treatment?

Obama Care’s definition of drug addiction and alcoholism as chronic diseases with insurance coverage eligibility could result in the treatment of 40+ million U.S. citizens in coming years.

Obama Care’s Impact On Addiction Treatment Costs

Current data shows that roughly 24 million Americans ages 12+ are struggling with substance abuse issues requiring professional treatment. However, only a small percentage (11%) received care at a rehabilitation facility – many of which charge an average of $4,000 for admission, or $1,500 for outpatient treatment. Obama Care may potentially eliminate the cost burdens associated with treatment.

How Will Obama Care Affect Addiction Treatment |Texas Drug Rehab“If diabetes were treated like substance abuse, only people in the most advanced stages of illness would be covered, such as those who had already lost their vision or had severe kidney damage,” remarked former Deputy Director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, Dr. A. Thomas McLellan. “I don’t think there’s another illness that will be more affected by the Affordable Care Act.”

Substance Abuse Treatment Covered Under Primary Care?

Under Obama Care, substance abuse treatment via rehab centers in Texas and throughout the U.S. will be viewed as primary care, with an emphasis on preventative measures. Addiction treatment will be categorized as an “essential service,” requiring health care plans to provide the service to those in need.

By year’s end, under Obama Care, substance use disorder coverage may be comparable to other chronic diseases, such as asthma, diabetes and hypertension. Government insurers (Medicaid and Medicare) will cover everything from smoking cessation and monitoring tests to anti-craving medications, drug and alcohol testing, family counseling, home health visits, clinic visits and assessments.

Likely Change In New Addiction Treatments From Pharmaceutical Companies

As substance abuse becomes legitimized as a chronic illness, pharmaceutical companies will be more likely to focus additional energy on the development of medications and treatment options. “Immense markets are being created,” says McLellan. “Until now, there have been about 13,000 treatment providers for substance use disorders, and less than half of those are doctors. Now 550,000 primary care doctors, in addition to nurses who care prescribe medications, will be caring for these patients.”

Obama Care’s Impact On Other Diseases

Obama Care’s emphasis on prevention and screening may also hinder the formation or progression of other chronic diseases that may indirectly raise health care costs via other medical issues.  For example, a diabetic alcoholic may be less likely to use their medications properly, or teens who smoke pot excessively may experience asthma in later life. By placing a focus on budding addictions, the ACA may have a positive impact on the cost of American healthcare overall.

If you’re looking for treatment centers in Texas for you or a loved one, contact Touchstone Ranch Recovery Center today at 888-988-5128…We will give you another chance at success, happiness and life-long sobriety!

New Year Tips For Recovery And Life-Long Sobriety

With every New Year there’s new hope, new goals and aspirations…and potential. If you’re new to the recovery game, a new year may afford you the opportunity to pursue a clean slate. In this entry we will discuss how to accomplish and maintain your sobriety goals in 2014.

Tips For Sobriety In The New Year

  • Recovery for the New Year is going to take some work…. literally. If you are not currently employed, it’s time to get hunting. This is not a lecture on laziness, but a suggestion to keep you moving. A steady job can keep you busier than most any other activity; providing financial security, a sense of responsibility and pride. Maintaining employment can teach you a great deal about the world and yourself during recovery.
  • Tips For Sobriety In The New Year | Addiction Recovery TreatmentFind yourself a hobby. Sobriety in recovery is more about finding enjoyment than limiting it. A hobby outside of work can take up a good portion of time without the pressure of employment. Start a collection – books, music, comics, etc. Or try growing a garden, taking a cooking class or learning an instrument. Whatever you choose, make sure you allow yourself to enjoy it fully. Become immersed. Be free.
  • Exercise your mind. Dive into a good novel or take a class at your local community college. This is similar to a hobby, but something that will stimulate your brain on a more regular basis. Other options include word games like crosswords or writing in a daily diary.
  • Exercise your body. Exercise and recovery partner very well. While the benefits of mental stimulation are many, nothing beats the release of pain and stress provided by physical activity. Grab a membership at the local gym. Not only will this keep you healthy, but provide a positive social outlet. If you are unable to afford the cost of a gym membership, options are still available. A quick walk or jog around the neighborhood is always free. Add a few push ups and sit ups and you’ve got yourself a viable routine. Consider investing in some free weights – Goodwill and thrift stores are always a sure bet.
  • Find yourself a 12 step recovery program. Daily meetings are essential to the success of a newly recovering addict. Locate a meeting near to home or work, and commit to attending at least one per day. These programs offer participants support and camaraderie to those who need it most. Take advantage… you won’t regret it.

If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, Touchstone Ranch is the place to turn. Pick up the phone today and let our team of recovery specialists help you back on track towards the healthy, happy lifestyle you’ve been missing. Contact us at 888-988-5128!

Read About Our Vision Of Recovery And Start A Live Of Life-Long Sobriety Today!

What Types Of Addiction Treatments Are Available?

Substance abuse has negative effects on individuals, their friends and family, as well as the economy. Figures published by the National Institute on Drug Abuse show that substance abuse costs such as lost productivity and healthcare total more than $600 billion every year. For people struggling with drug or alcohol addiction, treatment that includes detoxification is necessary.

Different Types Of Addiction Treatment

Residential Treatment

Types Of Addiction Programs | Choosing A Treatment FacilityThis involves living in a facility while undergoing treatment and detox. While in these usually, longer-term programs patients will first detox from addiction withdrawal symptoms such as seizures, delirium, sleep disturbances, anxiety, depression, hallucinations, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, incoherent speech, and insomnia.  Patients will safely live within the facility until they complete full recovery from addiction-both psychologically and physically.

Partial Hospitalization

Partial hospitalization is less intense than residential treatment and involves patients visiting treatment facilities during the day and going back home. Such a program could last anywhere from four to six hours.

Intensive Outpatient Treatment

This program is best for someone who has stronger family and /or work commitments or who is in the beginning of their addiction. Nevertheless, it still requires major commitment in terms of attending treatment sessions that can last several hours during the day, throughout the week. Equine assisted addiction recovery programs can play a big role in outpatient treatment and can help patients regain confidence, assertiveness, empathy, trust, and affection. The aim is to ensure one does not start using drugs again due to temptation and peer pressure, stress at work, or depression.

Addiction Counseling

Addiction counseling provides follow up support and is usually part of another drug treatment program. Counseling can take place in a group setting or individually. The aim is to help a patient identify his/her problem areas, learn how to cope with the urge to take illegal drugs, and repair broken relationships, for long-term recovery and sobriety.

Choosing An Addiction Treatment Facility

When choosing a drug or alcohol treatment facility for a loved one or yourself, it is important to consider the following factors carefully:

  • Choose a facility that caters to your specific addiction and needs
  • Find out if the facility offers quality treatment by hiring qualified and licensed staff
  • Inquire about the success rate of programs offered
  • Inquire about the type of services offered. You do not want to spend money at a facility that does not follow up on the progress of patients after the initial treatment ends or does not offer full detox services

In summary, addicts need to first look into detox programs, to free themselves from the strong symptoms of withdrawal and to rid the body of harmful toxins. Choosing a facility run by caring and seasoned professionals like here at Touchstone Ranch Recovery Center will get you on the right path to recovery and will customize your treatment to suit your medical and psychological needs.

Keep in mind that the earlier you seek treatment, the sooner you will begin the journey to recovery!  Contact us today at 888-988-5128.

Dangers Of Prescription Drug Addiction And Rehab Treatment

Dangers Of Prescription Drug Addiction | Prescription Drug Treatment

Prescription drug abuse is fast becoming a huge problem in the country, with many people of all ages, and from all walks of life getting caught up in prescription drug addiction. Prescription drug abuse happens because many people take them even when they are not necessary, quickly build up a tolerance, or combine prescription medications thinking that it will help with some or other medical problem.

Then there are those who end up overdosing because they experiment with prescription drugs, in an attempt to experience different kinds of highs. Some people also become addicted when they want to lose weight. They start taking prescription medications for weight loss, and because they either take it for too long a period of time, or consume more tablets than they are supposed to take, an addiction can quickly and easily start.

Prescription Drugs – Just As Dangerous As Illegal, Street Drugs

Many people have the idea that prescription medications cannot lead to addiction or are not as dangerous because they are legal drugs, but this is not true. Prescription drugs are given to patients for their specific medical problem, and are only safe if they are taken as per the doctor’s exact instructions. If too many prescription drugs are taken for a long time, they can be just as addictive and detrimental as illegal drugs, such as heroin or cocaine.

Craving The Feelings From Prescription Drugs?

Some become dependent on prescription drugs because the drugs make them feel better and in order to stay feeling well, start craving the medication. They will continue to use these drugs to satisfy their cravings, despite the fact that it is causing enormous problems in their lives, including marital problems, work-related issues, as well as the mental and physical harm they are doing to themselves from excessive use of the drug.

Treatment And Rehab For Prescription Drug Addiction

Fortunately, there are prescription rehab centers in the country to help victims of prescription drug addiction. These rehabilitation centers provide a variety of treatments to help patients overcome their addiction to prescription drugs, including different detoxification techniques, patient treatment, and one-on-one as well as group counseling sessions. As the severity of addiction differs from patient to patient, all of these treatment methods, or a combination thereof, will need to be used for successful and complete rehabilitation.

Learn More About Addiction Treatment Programs And Start Your Path To Long-Term Sobriety!

What’s Involved In Equine Assisted Therapy For An Addict?

Drug and alcohol addiction is a growing problem. Medical personnel and health experts have come up with diverse ways such equine drug and alcohol addiction therapy to help addicts kick their habits. This type of therapy involves interactions with horses and includes activities such as grooming, haltering, feeding, leading and building a non-judgmental, trusting relationship with the horse.

Equine Therapy Tasks

Equine Assisted Therapy | Drug And Alcohol Addiction ProgramsEquine therapy methods vary from one addiction treatment facility to the next. One common technique involves giving a patient a halter that he/she would use to catch a horse. This task can be challenging depending on the patient’s perseverance, technique and temperament of the horses involved. Faced with this challenge, a participant may try different methods of snagging a horse. In some instances, it could take more than one session to place a halter over a horse’s head.

Another technique involves guiding a horse through a set of obstacles without using a halter. This could also be tricky since trying to guide a horse to move in a particular direction and give commends may not be easy, especially for someone who has never interacted with equines before. For this task, one should strive to gain the trust of the horse.

Equine Therapy Benefits And Goals

The goal of interactions between horses and people with substance abuse problems is to help them develop self-confidence, accountability, a sense of responsibility, as well as self-control. In addition, patients learn how to build relationships, acceptable social behaviors, and gain a better understanding of the implications of certain actions.

These interactions take place under the supervision of licensed psychologists and equine specialists. The reason health experts use horses is because they are social animals and their huge size and power can help substance abuse victims build self-confidence.

Who Can Benefit From Equine Assisted Therapy?

Equine assisted therapy can be beneficial to a wide range of people with substance abuse problems. These include alcohol, heroin, cocaine, prescription drug, crystal meth and other addicts.

All in all, recovering from substance abuse is possible provided one seeks help and treatment. Equine assisted addiction rehab can help one develop social skills, problem solving skills, self-awareness, and increase self-confidence and self-esteem. This type of therapy can take place as part of a residential or outpatient treatment program.

If you or a loved one need help with addiction and are interested in a life of happiness and sobriety, contact Touchstone Recovery Center now! 888-988-5128

Read More About The Benefits Of An Equine Therapy Program And Gain Your Happiness And Freedom Back!

Finding Direction And Hope For Sobriety During The New Year Celebrations

Finding Hope In The New Year With Addiction | Holiday SobrietyThe New Year can be a time for joy, for families to come together; they can also be a time when you struggle the most if you have been dealing with addiction. The fun, celebratory atmosphere seems to cater to the drinking that you have been trying to put behind you. They can also be a time for embarrassment because everyone else has to see what you are dealing with in a way that it was never exposed to them before. However, most of all, the new year should be a time for finding hope.

You need to use this as a chance to put things in order and take stock of where you want to be. Is your addiction holding you back from the happiness that you desire? Have you not been able to stick to the 12 steps and find sobriety, and do you want a chance to try again? Use this holiday season and this New Year as the point at which you turn your life around. Commit yourself to fighting this battle and winning it, and dedicate yourself to the cause.

Don’t Fight Addiction Alone

Of course, beating an addiction is one of the hardest things that you can do on your own, so you should think about joining a group like Alcoholics Anonymous. They can help you in many ways. For one, there are 12-step recovery programs that have proven to work in the past, rather than just trying to go cold turkey on your own. For another, they give you the support structure that helps keep you accountable to someone other than yourself so that you will not give up.

As much as the holidays and New Year are about family and friends, you may want to talk to someone that you’re close to and can trust, about your struggles. Tell them that you want to use the 12-step recovery programs and that you are trying to put your addiction behind you. Having them on your side gives you additional strength and determination so that this year can be a celebration of your positive life changes.

Read More About How To Find Hope And Beauty In Your Recovery