Blood Pressure

How Does Alcohol Increase Blood Pressure?

High blood pressure can result from a variety of factors. But, does alcohol increase blood pressure? Yes, the more you drink, the higher your risk of developing high blood pressure. But how does alcohol increase blood pressure? 

In the U.S., high blood pressure is a common health problem. In fact, almost 75 million adults have high blood pressure. Unfortunately, it can lead to severe medical conditions such as heart failure, stroke, and heart attack. 

What is Blood Pressure?

Each heartbeat pumps blood into the arteries. Blood pressure is the force of this blood pushing against arterial walls. Blood pressure is at it’s highest when your heartbeats. This pressure is known as your systolic pressure and is the first recorded number. Your blood pressure is at it’s lowest in between beats and is the diastolic number. 

Factors of High Blood Pressure

Some critical blood pressure thresholds include:

  • Normal – Less than 120/80 mmHg
  • Prehypertension – Between 120/80 and 129/89 mmHg
  • Stage 1 Hypertension – Between 130/80 and 139/89 mmHg
  • Stage 2 Hypertension – 140/90 mmHg and higher
  • Hypertension crisis – over 180/120 mmHg

High blood pressure is when your blood pressure stays elevated longer than usual. Also called hypertension, high blood pressure makes the heart beat harder. Over time, this can lead to kidney disease, stroke, and heart attack.

Causes of High Blood Pressure: Does Alcohol Increase Blood Pressure?

Family history and genetics increase your risk of hypertension. But your lifestyle and behaviors can also increase your risk. However, high blood pressure is a silent killer because of the lack of symptoms.

Lifestyle factors that increase your risk may include:

  • Unhealthy eating habits
  • Being overweight
  • Lack of physical activity
  • Diabetes
  • Smoking
  • Substance Use Disorder (SUD), particularly Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD)

Does Alcohol Increase Blood Pressure?

Anyone can develop high blood pressure. But, certain factors can increase your risk, such as drinking alcohol. Just one alcoholic drink can increase blood pressure, although it typically corrects itself in 2 hours. 

Factors of High Blood Pressure: How Does Alcohol Increase Blood Pressure? 

Blood pressure is also indirectly affected by alcohol. This effect is because alcohol affects the entire body, which affects blood pressure. These effects include:

  • Nervous system – Although little is known about the effects of alcohol on the nervous system, alcohol can affect nerves throughout the body. And, the nervous system helps control blood pressure.
  • Change in pressure receptors – Baroreceptors sense blood pressure and make adjustments when needed. Alcohol affects these receptors and increases blood pressure. 
  • Increases cortisol – Cortisol, a stress hormone, can raise blood pressure. Alcohol increases cortisol production, therefore increasing blood pressure. 
  • Increases calcium levels – Alcohol increases calcium amounts in the muscles that line arteries. As a result, the arteries become constricted, which elevates blood pressure.
  • Weight – Blood pressure increases if you are overweight. Alcohol is empty calories that, over time, cause weight gain and increases blood pressure. 

One factor alone does not cause high blood pressure. Instead, it is a combination of factors that together leads to high blood pressure.

High Blood Pressure: Does Beer Raise Blood Pressure?

Heavy and regular consumption of alcohol can increase blood pressure. For this reason, it’s crucial to drink in moderation. Furthermore, it can lead to irregular heartbeats, stroke, and heart failure. 

Drinking in moderation means two drinks per day for men and one drink per day for women. A standard drink is:

  • 12 oz beer
  • 4 oz glass of wine
  • 1.5 oz of 80-proof liquor
  • 1 oz of 100-proof liquor

Binge Drinking: Does Alcohol Increase Blood Pressure?

Does alcohol increase blood pressure? Yes. In addition, drinking over several days, binge drinking, and long-term heavy drinking can cause chronic hypertension, which is a risk factor for coronary artery disease. 

Furthermore, binge drinking can lead to atherosclerosis. This condition is the narrowing and hardening of arteries, which increases blood pressure. Between the increase in sugar from binge drinking and the constant rise in blood pressure, it puts people in danger of a stroke or heart attack.

Explaining the Phases of Alcoholism and How Does Alcohol Increase Blood Pressure?

There are five phases to explain alcoholism and high blood pressure. They include:

  • Phase 1: Alcohol does lead to an increase in blood pressure. The effects of alcohol on blood pressure are independent of age, race, and sex.
  • Phase 2: Abstaining from alcohol will reduce both systolic and diastolic numbers.
  • Phase 3: Resuming the consumption of alcohol increases blood pressure again.
  • Phase 4: The continuous rise in blood pressure can lead to liver damage.
  • Phase 5: The onset of end-stage liver disease is when blood pressure is typically it’s highest.

Should You Drink With High Blood Pressure?

If you have high blood pressure, you should avoid drinking alcohol. Doctors often recommend exercise and a healthy diet for those with high blood pressure. And part of a healthy diet is avoiding alcohol. 

What is Blood Pressure

Although alcohol does contribute to high blood pressure, the American Heart Association (AHA) says those with hypertension should drink in moderation. However, the less you drink, the better it is. Furthermore, The AHA recommendations may not work for everyone, so it’s crucial to talk to your doctor.

Low Blood Pressure and Drinking Alcohol

If you have low blood pressure, does alcohol increase blood pressure? You should never use alcohol to treat low blood pressure. In fact, people with low blood pressure can still raise blood pressure when drinking alcohol.

Can Treatment for Alcohol Use Disorder Reverse High Blood Pressure?

Alcohol use disorder is treatable but is it possible to reverse alcohol-induced high blood pressure?

Although there are multiple ways to treat alcohol-related high blood pressure, the most effective is to quit drinking. But, this lifestyle change isn’t easy. Above all, you are not alone. Our therapists at Sana Lake walk with you through our comprehensive, holistic addiction treatment.

It’s More than Just Treating Alcohol Use Disorder

Although treatment for alcohol use disorder will help normalize blood pressure, it takes more than just addiction treatment. A healthy lifestyle is required for normal blood pressure. So, regular exercise and physical activity can go a long way to healing your body.

Instead of sitting in front of the tv with a beer, take a walk, a bike ride, or play sports with friends. A healthy diet goes hand-in-hand with exercise. Throw out the junk food and replace it with fruits and vegetables. 

The healthier you become, the higher your motivation to maintain Recovery for Life. 

How Does Stress and How Does Alcohol Increase Blood Pressure?

A huge part of a healthy lifestyle is managing stress. Stress especially plays a role in high blood pressure. When stress and alcohol use disorder are combined, you are at a greater risk of high blood pressure.

In treatment for alcohol use disorder, you will learn coping skills to manage stress. Stress management not only lowers blood pressure but also encourages lasting recovery. 

What to Expect in Treatment for Alcohol Use Disorder

Misusing alcohol is a serious problem that affects your health and quality of life. We have focused on how alcohol increases blood pressure, but there is more. Alcohol also causes other adverse effects, such as work and relationship problems. 

High Blood Pressure

Depending on the severity of your alcohol use disorder and other factors, inpatient treatment is highly recommended. Even though blood pressure typically returns to normal when you stop drinking, it can sometimes increase. 

For this reason, medical detox and inpatient treatment provide 24-hour supervision. In detox, this supervision can manage withdrawal symptoms as they begin. At the same time, inpatient addiction programs offer safety and supervision to prevent the recurrence of use. 

Signs and Symptoms of Alcohol Use Disorder

Recognizing the signs and symptoms of alcohol use disorder can prevent you from having to ask, “Does alcohol increase blood pressure?”

  • Drinking more than intended
  • Unable to stop drinking
  • Drinking to cope with mental and physical issues
  • Blacking out from drinking
  • Engaging in risky behaviors
  • Relationship issues
  • Job loss because of alcohol use
  • Legal troubles such as a DUI

Inpatient Treatment at Sana Lake

Besides inpatient treatment providing a safe environment free from drugs and alcohol, it also eliminates distractions and fears that interfere with recovery. Furthermore, it can be challenging to find support in recovery. Maybe you pushed away your family and healthy friends when they didn’t accept your addiction. But, group therapy proves you are not alone in recovery. 

Inpatient treatment gives members the chance to receive and provide support and guidance to motivate and encourage Recovery for Life. Our inpatient program offers individualized treatment plans that include individual and group traditional and holistic therapies. Our therapies focus on ensuring members feel heard and understood as well as recover from past traumas. 

Improve Your Life and Health at Sana Lake Recovery

If you or someone you love is struggling with alcohol use disorder, there is hope. You deserve to be happy and healthy while living your best life. Contact us today, and start your recovery journey.


Is Legalized Drugs a Good Thing?

Legalized Drugs: How Will Legal Mushrooms and Marijuana Affect Addiction Rates?

The 2020 election proved voters wanted to ease restrictions on recreational and medicinal drug use. With many people asking, is marijuana going to be legalized? Well, on November 3rd, Arizona, Montana, New Jersey, and South Dakota answered this question. They made legal weed news joining 11 other states passing legalized drugs. 

Voters in Oregon also approved two landmark measures – one allowing legal mushrooms and another decriminalizes small amounts of illicit drugs. Measure 109 allows the use of psilocybin or magic mushrooms in therapeutic settings. While Measure 110 makes small amounts of certain drugs a civil violation with a $100 fine. 

Is Legalized Drugs a Good Thing?

Just as many people ask, is marijuana going to be legalized, many people ask why have legalized drugs. Both sides of the issue continue making legal weed news with good arguments—for example, the effect of legalized drugs on addiction and incarceration rates. However, the money states can make off legalized drugs is a great selling point. 

Arguments Against Is Marijuana Going to be Legalized

The anti-side of legalized drugs argues that using marijuana or cannabis regularly can lead to addiction. Drug addiction is a major problem in America. And many people worry legalizing marijuana will worsen addiction rates. 

Arguments against legalizing recreational marijuana include:

  • Marijuana is addictive and changes the natural chemical makeup of the brain. These changes affect the body’s physiological functions. 
  • When more people use marijuana, the higher the rates of cannabis use disorder. 
  • Although not as physically dangerous as other drugs, marijuana can cause a decrease cognitive skills and motivation. These effects can interfere with memory, opportunities, and performance. 
  • Making marijuana as socially acceptable as alcohol and tobacco can lead to unpredictable consequences.
  • Legalizing marijuana can cause the youth to view it as harmless. 
  • Psychiatric issues can be challenging to diagnose in those who use cannabis. 

Legal Weed News Argues For, Is Marijuana Going to be Legalized

In 2012, Colorado and Washington legalized recreational marijuana. Since legalization, Colorado has collected over $1.2 billion in taxes and fees. Last year alone, legalized drugs brought in over $302 million. However, Washington blew them out of the water collecting $395.5 million last year. 

When the answer is yes when asking is marijuana going to be legalized, a boom in local economies happens. More people will open independent dispensaries and grow shops increasing jobs. This increase in jobs benefits everyone – individuals, businesses, and governments.

Legalized Drugs and Teen Addiction Rates

Arguments for legalizing recreational marijuana include:

  • Marijuana is physically less harmful than alcohol.
  • Most individuals incarcerated for cannabis are otherwise law-abiding citizens.
  • Attempts at controlling the supply of marijuana with incarceration have failed.
  • Just as with tobacco use, universal access to education and treatment can decrease the demand.
  • Marijuana is not a gateway drug – marijuana use doesn’t typically lead to using other drugs.
  • Tax money from cannabis can fund prevention programs.
  • Government regulation of legalized drugs offers a safer and purer substance, unlike buying illicit drugs.

Legalized Drugs and Addiction Rates

Some people believe that legalized drugs will lead to higher addiction rates. But, the statistics don’t support this belief. Furthermore, as people understand addiction more, the opinion is changing. For example, addiction is seen as a mental health disorder and not a criminal one. 

In 2001 the world was watching as Portugal made legal weed news and legalized drugs. And now, over a decade later, drug use has not gone up. However, arrests, incarceration, and overdose rates have all gone down. 

For example:

  • Portugal’s drug use rates are far below European and U.S. rates
  • From 1998 to 2011, people in addiction treatment increased by over 60 percent
  • Overdoses dropped from 80 in 2001 to only 16 in 2012.

Legalized Drugs and Teen Addiction Rates

In Colorado, one benefit of legalized drugs is their impact on teen marijuana use. A federal survey shows since legalizing recreational marijuana, teen marijuana use has dropped. 

The number of high school students who used marijuana between 2011 and 2017 dropped 11 percent. At the same time, teens who tried marijuana also dropped 11 percent. One reason may be legalized drugs, and their restrictions make it difficult for teens to obtain marijuana. 

Legal Weed News and Opioid Use

Between 2000 and 2016, 4027 people in Colorado suffered fatal opioid overdoses, according to the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. However, their study in 2017 found opioid-related deaths fell more than 6 percent. So, these stats show that legalized drugs have positive impacts on opioid use rates. 

Legal Weed News, Legalized Drugs, and Incarceration

The term “decriminalization” is thrown around a lot lately when discussing legalized drugs, specifically cannabis. However, decriminalization is not the same as legalization. Simply put, decriminalization of marijuana simply reduces the consequences of breaking some marijuana laws. 

Legalized Drugs

Most states which have decriminalized marijuana, for example, don’t press criminal charges for small amounts of legalized drugs. For example, getting caught with typically less than an ounce will not result in jail time or a criminal record. However, like an open container violation, a fine may be issued.

Legal Weed News: Colorado Crime Rates After Legalized Drugs

It’s been 8 years since Colorado legalized recreational marijuana use. And, as you would expect, marijuana arrests plummeted. For example, between 2012 and 2017, marijuana arrests dropped 56 percent. 

However, according to the Colorado Bureau of Investigations’ latest annual report, all forms of violent crimes have been steadily rising over 5 years. But, Gov. Hickenlooper isn’t ready to blame legalized drugs just yet. Some people believe the rise in crime is because of an increase in the transient population.

Medical Cannabis and Legalized Drugs

The medical benefits of cannabis have been studied and debated for decades. THC, the main component of cannabis, does have medical benefits. In fact, there are FDA-approved drugs that contain THC, such as Marinol and Cesamet. 

Although there are arguments against medical cannabis, there are so many personal stories of how medical cannabis helped physically and mentally. But, above all, it has helped some people recover from prescription drug addictions. 

Legal Mushrooms and Mental Health

The main ingredient in several types of psychoactive mushrooms is psilocybin. It is commonly homegrown or found in the wild while being sold dried or fresh. Scientists and mental health professionals consider psilocybin a promising treatment in a variety of psychiatric diagnoses. 

Like other psychedelics, legal mushrooms cause profound consciousness and perception changes. The effects of legal mushrooms typically last 4 to 6 hours. But, the peak effects of legal mushrooms occurs 2 to 3 hours after ingestion. 

The effects of legal mushrooms include:

  • Sensory enhancement
  • Seeing objects that appear to be floating or moving
  • Unusual thoughts and speech
  • Personal insight and reflection
  • An excited mood

However, legal mushrooms can overwhelming or mentally jarring. But, taken in a therapeutic setting can lead to deeply meaningful and positive life-changing experiences. Dozens of studies are showing significant benefits in treating the following disorders with legal mushrooms. 

  • Cluster headaches
  • Anxiety
  • Addiction
  • Depression
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder

Are Legal Mushrooms Addictive?

Legal mushrooms are not considered addictive nor cause compulsive use. Because the experience is so intense, most people limit their use of legal mushrooms. Besides, the body quickly builds a tolerance to psilocybin. 

This tolerance leads to needing more for the same effect. But, using legal mushrooms repeatedly for a few days actually takes away any effects from legal mushrooms. Cross-tolerance occurs specifically with legal mushrooms and LSD. Cross-tolerance means if you take LSD one day and legal mushrooms the next, the legal mushrooms will have no effect. 

Treatment Centers Respond to Legalized Drugs

Although legalized drugs like marijuana are considered organic, harmless, and safe, they can be addictive.  The NIDA suggests around 9 percent of those who misuse marijuana will develop a marijuana addiction. But, if you start using as a teen, that rate goes up to 17 percent. 

Although marijuana isn’t physically addictive like heroin or alcohol, it can be psychologically addictive. Because most people favor legalized drugs, there is a misconception about addiction and the need for marijuana addiction treatment. 

Legalized Drugs and Treatment at Sana Lake Recovery Center

At Sana Lake, we understand that the availability of legalized drugs can lead to addiction. So, if you find yourself struggling with a marijuana use disorder, we have a personalized program to help. Our comprehensive recovery approach sets our members up to achieve Recovery for Life. 

From traditional to holistic therapies, treatment may include:

  • Psychotherapy
  • Group therapy
  • Co-occurring disorder treatment
  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT)
  • Dialectical Behavior therapy (DBT)
  • Holistic therapies – yoga, meditation, mindfulness, nutrition, journaling

Your Recovery for Life Starts Today!

If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction or mental health disorders, it’s time to get help. From medical detox through our aftercare programs, our doctors and therapists are with you each step. Contact us today to find out more. 


What is the Link Between Sexual Abuse and Addiction?

What is the Link Between Sexual Abuse and Addiction?

In the United States, one in five women and one in thirty-eight men have been sexually abused. Furthermore, before the age of 18, one in four girls will be sexually abused. The emotional pain often leads to the co-occurrence of sexual abuse and addiction. But, seeking sexual abuse treatment can prevent the added struggles of addiction.

Sexual abuse is a very traumatic experience. In fact, many survivors of sexual abuse also have PTSD. But, many people try to hide their struggles, afraid of what others might think. Instead of getting sexual abuse treatment, they turn to drugs and alcohol to numb the pain. 

Without sexual abuse treatment, the trauma of the abuse can be impossible to handle. As a result, people self-medicate with drugs and alcohol to cope with their feelings. However, occasional use can quickly turn to everyday use and, eventually, addiction. 

What is the Link Between Sexual Abuse and Addiction?

If you are struggling with sexual abuse and addiction, your sexual abuse treatment should co-occur with addiction treatment. If you only seek addiction treatment, then the real source of your addiction is not being treated. 

A comprehensive dual-diagnosis treatment center, such as Sana Lake, treats your struggles with sexual abuse and addiction simultaneously. 

How is the Trauma of Sexual Abuse and Addiction Linked?

Traditional substance use disorder treatment isn’t always effective with trauma survivors. But, to understand why it’s not, you must understand the link between sexual abuse and addiction. 

Both sexual abuse and addiction can have vague starting and stopping points. Unfortunately, children are at high risk for physical and sexual abuse, especially if they have parents struggling with addiction. 

Drugs and alcohol impair judgment, which interferes with the daily care and support of children. Even if the parent isn’t abusing the child, the lack of supervision due to addiction can leave them vulnerable to other adults. 

Sexual abuse doesn’t mean that a child will turn to drugs and alcohol right away. And they may never use drugs and alcohol. But, the trauma of sexual abuse doesn’t go away. So a person may turn to drugs years later when the emotional pain becomes too much. 

Children who watch their parents use drugs and alcohol may also use drugs and alcohol later. For some, this use can turn into an addiction. Why? Because using drugs and alcohol changes the chemical makeup in the brain and body, leading to dependency and addiction.

Why Do Survivors of Sexual Abuse Turn to Drugs and Alcohol?

Survivors of sexual abuse often feel a great deal of guilt and shame. And many times, they don’t have anyone to talk to. Some survivors feel guilty or responsible for their experience. These thoughts and feelings can be challenging to cope with. 

The shame of sexual abuse often leads to addiction.

Sexual abuse survivors want to escape their painful memories. They don’t want to think about the pain and fear of the trauma. So, they self-medicate. Drugs or alcohol give them temporary relief from traumatic thoughts and feelings. 

However, self-medicating can have negative consequences, including addiction. Often, a person doesn’t even realize they are becoming dependent on the substance. 

In many cases, using drugs or alcohol is the only way to make them feel good about themselves. In other cases, however, survivors use drugs and alcohol as a form of self-harm and punishment. 

Sexual abuse and addiction often co-occur for the following reasons.

  • To reduce feelings of loneliness and isolation.
  • To cope and escape from the traumatic memories. 
  • To improve self-esteem.
  • To engage in the form of controlled self-harm.
  • To self-medicate instead of seeking sexual abuse treatment. 

Women, Sexual Abuse and Addiction

Ninety-one percent of sexual assault survivors are female. Before the age of 18, one in 4 girls will be survivors of sexual abuse. As a result, women are at a higher risk of addiction in response to the trauma. 

The long-term effects of sexual abuse on women include:

  • 94% of women experience PTSD in the two weeks following the abuse
  • 30% of women still have PTSD 9 months later
  • 33% of women consider suicide
  • 13% of women attempt suicide

Women who experience sexual abuse and addiction are:

  • Three times more likely to use marijuana.
  • Six times more likely to use cocaine.
  • Ten times more likely to use other drugs.

Men, Sexual Abuse and Addiction

While sexual abuse most commonly happens to females, it does also happen to males. However, males are less likely to report acts of sexual abuse. 

Beyond the challenges females face, additional challenges stop males from reporting the abuse. For instance, there are certain attitudes and stereotypes about men and masculinity. 

Some men who have been survivors of sexual abuse believe they should have been able to prevent the assault. And like women, men may also feel guilty or feel like they asked for it. 

Although the rate of sexual abuse and addiction is higher in women, male survivors also struggle with co-occurring sexual abuse and addiction. Therefore, seeking sexual abuse treatment can minimize the risk of addiction and help you heal from the trauma of sexual abuse. 

Teen Abused Sex: Sexual Abuse and Addiction

While both males and females struggle with teen abused sex, it is more common in females. The trauma of teen abused sex can lead to self-medicating with drugs and alcohol. The use of substances is a way to escape the memory of teen abused sex temporarily. 

Adults who faced teen abused sex are 1.5 times more likely to misuse substances such as drugs and alcohol. Studies by the NIH also indicate drug use is more common than alcohol use in victims of teen abused sex. 

Sexual abuse leaves not only physical scars but also emotional ones. But, self-medicating only creates more problems. If you know a teen who struggles with sexual abuse and addiction, it’s important to urge them to seek sexual abuse treatment. 

What to Do If You Suspect Sexual Abuse

While addiction is typically linked to past sexual abuse, it’s important to emphasize this: if you think someone is being abused in any form, it’s crucial to urge them to seek help. You can help your loved ones by giving them options. Encourage them to call the police or go to the hospital. You can even provide them with the number to the National Sexual Assault Hotline. 

It’s never okay to turn a blind eye to someone being abused. It can be awkward to interfere, but the alternative is much worse. If you don’t know how to help, there are also resources to help you help them. If the situation involves a child, getting child protective services involved is best. 

How Can You Talk to a Loved One Struggling with Sexual Abuse and Addiction

It can be difficult knowing how to talk to a survivor of sexual abuse, whether it’s been ten months or ten years. Besides encouraging them to seek sexual abuse treatment, being an ear for them to talk to and a shoulder to lean on can be valuable. 

There are three primary ways to help a loved one whose been a victim of traumatic abuse. 

Know the available resources. 

Whether you have the number for a sexual abuse hotline or talking with treatment professionals, it’s vital to do your research. Although you may not share all your research with the survivor, it’s essential to understand what they’re going through. The research can help you walk them through the recovery process. 

Remember, recovery is a process. 

Working through the trauma of sexual abuse and addiction is a process. Furthermore, survivors will not be healed overnight. The traumatic memories won’t disappear, nor will the urges to self-medicate. Remind them recovery and healing is a personal journey and doesn’t have a timeline.

Make regular check-ins.

Regular check-ins will be different for everyone. For some, it may be a daily call of encouragement. While for others, it might be a weekly visit. Whatever your check-ins look like, make sure your loved one knows you love and support them. 

However, if your loved one is in sexual abuse treatment, their communication may be limited. Be sure to ask about the center’s guidelines, so you don’t interfere with treatment and recovery.

Phrases to Support Loved Ones Struggling with Sexual Abuse and Addiction

I’m sorry this happened. By acknowledging the trauma of sexual abuse, it shows empathy. It also shows you’re glad the loved one trusts you. 

It’s not your fault. Survivors of sexual abuse often blame themselves. For this reason, it’s comforting to remind them it’s not their fault, and they did nothing wrong.

You are not alone. Being there for your loved ones can encourage them to work through their memories. When survivors have a trusted person to talk to can be valuable in healing. However, you should also encourage them to speak to a professional. 

I believe you. When your loved one shares their story with you, don’t question your loved ones’ memories or press for more details. These actions show you believe them and make them feel comfortable and safe. 

Mental Health Issues from Sexual Abuse and Addiction

After sexual abuse, survivors may feel like their body isn’t their own. They often feel shame, guilt, and terror. They may also blame themselves for the abuse. 

Due to the trauma and emotions of sexual abuse, survivors often struggle with mental health issues and addiction. Sexual abuse and addiction may lead to the following mental health issues. 

  • Depression: Sexual abuse is often brutal to cope with. It can create feelings of hopelessness or despair. It may also lower one’s sense of self-worth. The symptoms of depression may be mild, or they can be intense and long-lasting.
  • Anxiety: Sexual abuse can also cause severe anxiety and panic attacks. Survivors may fear the sexual abuse could happen again. They may also develop agoraphobia and become frightened to leave their homes. 
  • Posttraumatic Stress Syndrome (PTSD): Survivors of sexual abuse may have intense memories of the abuse. In some cases, flashbacks may be so disruptive they cause a survivor to lose track of surroundings. 

When a person struggles with co-occurring trauma and addiction, it’s crucial to treat both conditions simultaneously. If you only treat the addiction and not heal from sexual abuse, the chances of using again are high. Both seeking sexual abuse treatment that also treats addiction can increase Recovery for Life.

Sexual Abuse Treatment at Sana Lake

At Sana Lake Recovery Center, our goal is to treat your addiction and heal past traumas that lead to addiction. Survivors of sexual abuse have a tough road to recovery. Our caring and compassionate therapists use holistic and trauma-based therapies to heal at your own pace. 

If you or a loved one struggles with sexual abuse and addiction, it’s time to get help. To find out more about sexual abuse treatment, contact us today.


Can I Get an Implant for Opiate Addiction?

Can I Get an Implant for Opiate Addiction?

In 2018,  there were 67,367 fatal drug overdoses in the U.S. Nearly 70 percent of the fatalities involved opiates. But, advances in the fight against addiction may provide you with an implant for opiate addiction. 

If you struggle with substance use disorder (SUD), you know the lure of prescription opiates and heroin. Opiates reduce pain and have effects similar to morphine. Examples of prescription opiates include Vicodin. Percocet and OxyContin. 

Even though opiates can make you feel good, they also can be the biggest struggle of your life. Opiates and other drugs destroy relationships and careers. And even with all the personal devastation it causes, opioids can be challenging to stop using. An implant for drug addiction may be the answer to Recovery for Life. 

How Did the Opioid Epidemic Start?

Opioid Epidemic

The opioid crisis in America has devastating effects on families. In 2019 there were 130 opioid-related deaths every day. Prescription opioids hit the market in the 1990s. And doctors started prescribing them without knowledge of their effects. 

Soon after, many Americans were struggling with opioid use disorder. The struggle is still a real problem today with people addicted to heroin, fentanyl, and other opioids. For instance, in 2017, opioids contributed to 1.7 million people struggling with addiction. 

Is There an Implant for Addiction?

Although medications such as Naltrexone treat opiate addiction, they require you to take medicine every day. This can be difficult for many people struggling with substance use disorder. 

But, in 2016, the FDA approved a subdermal implant for opiate addiction. Probuphine is metal rods implanted under the upper arm’s skin that delivers low dose buprenorphine over six months. 

Most recently, the FDA approved trials of a brain implant for drug addiction. Using Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS), a battery-powered chip emits electrical impulses to fight drug cravings. But, just how safe and effective is an implant for opiate addiction?

What is a Naltrexone Implant for Opiate Addiction?

Probuphine is the first FDA approved implant for opiate addiction. This temporary implant for addiction eases the worries of losing your medication, having it stolen, and forgetting to take it. 

Can I Get an Implant for Opiate Addiction?

However, this implant for drug addiction is not for those new to recovery. The Naltrexone implant for opiate addiction is for those who are clinically stable on low-to-moderate doses in a medication-assisted program (MAT). 

The implant for opiate addiction is four small rods inserted under the skin of the arm. Each rod is about the size of a matchstick and releases medication at a steady rate. A significant benefit of this implant for drug addiction is it lasts up to six months. 

The implant for opiate addiction can be prescribed twice, once in each arm. After the second round of the implant for addiction, the pre-implant doses of Naltrexone can resume.

Insertion and Removal of Naltrexone Implant for Opiate Addiction

Because Probuphine is an implant for addiction, it has to be inserted under the skin via a minor surgical procedure. Trained professionals do the procedure in a sterile environment. 

Providers, including medical staff and healthcare personnel, attend live training on insertion and removal of the implant for addiction. The FDA utilizes a step-by-step guide for the procedure. After inserting the implant for drug addiction, it’s crucial to follow all doctor directions to prevent infection.

Side Effects of Naltrexone Implant for Drug Addiction

The Naltrexone implant for drug addiction is typically well-tolerated. However, some side effects have been reported.

Common side effects include:

  • Headaches
  • Implant site pain or itching
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Constipation
  • Back pain
  • Tooth pain
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Depression

Uncommon but serious side effects include:

  • Opioid withdrawal
  • Allergic reaction
  • Infection
  • Liver injury
  • Low blood pressure

Cost of the Naltrexone Implant for Drug Addiction

The four rods of the implant for drug addiction contain 74.2 mg of medication. Each one of the four rods costs almost $1500. As a result, the typically 6-month course of the Naltrexone implant for drug addiction costs about $6000.

Deep Brain Stimulation: Implant for Opiate Addiction

Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) involves implanting electrodes in the brain. These electrodes provide continuous electrical stimulation to specific areas of the brain. This stimulation allows for the altering of brain activity. 

Could an implant for opiate addiction be the answer to fighting addiction?

DBS is very successful in treating many disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, OCD, and chronic pain. It can change the level of dopamine in the brain. Dopamine is a huge factor in addiction. As a result, DBS can curb opiate cravings encouraging Recovery for Life. 

Pros of a Brain Implant for Drug Addiction

  • With an implant for drug addiction, there is no worry about daily pills or injections. You can’t forget to take it. Nor is there a risk of having your medication stolen or lost. 
  • Because of the constant release, an implant for addiction is effective in managing withdrawal symptoms. It also lowers the risk of recurrence of use. 
  • The use of Probuphine lowers the chance of selling your meds on the street. 
  • An implant for addiction lowers the risk of children or pets getting into your medication.
  • The implant removes the daily choice between taking buprenorphine or using opiates. 
  • This implant could be an excellent option for people in prison.

Cons of a Brain Implant for Drug Addiction

  • As with most medications and procedures, the implant for addiction includes health risks. These risks can include damage to nerves or blood vessels and, specifically, an embolism.
  • Medical and addiction professionals show concern that using an implant for addiction will neglect therapy and check-ups. Although they have a 6-month “cure” for addiction in their arm, therapy is still vital to recovery.
  • Medical professionals must be specialty training to insert the implant for addiction. However, if the trained doctor prefers a surgeon to do the implant, both doctor and surgeon must be present. Will insurance cover both professionals? On top of that, the procedure must be done twice – once for insertion and once for removal.

First U.S. Trials of Brain Implants for Drug Addiction

The first U.S. trial of the brain implant for drug addiction began in November 2019. Gerod Buckhalter, 33, has struggled with addiction for over a decade. With multiple overdoses and recurrences of use, he was ready for the chance of Recovery for Life. 

In short, DBS starts with a series of brain scans. Then surgeons make a small hole in the skull. They insert a 1 mm electrode in the area of the brain that regulates self-control and addiction. After, the patient is monitored for two years. 

Although this is the first brain implant for drug addiction, DBS is used for multiple conditions. In fact, over 180,000 people have brain implants. 

Does an Implant for Opiate Addiction Work?

Published human experiences with the implant for addiction is limited to promising case studies that weren’t controlled. But, most animal studies have shown promising results. Most animal studies typically focus on brain stimulation during active addiction. For this reason, more data is needed on the effects of withdrawal symptoms in humans.

The Opioid Crisis in Missouri: The Need for an Implant for Addiction

Deaths from opioid overdoses are steadily increasing in Missouri. The devastating misuse of opiates places a huge burden on families, communities, and healthcare systems. In 2018, 1 in 56 deaths in Missouri were due to an opioid overdose. That means 1,132 people died in 2018, which is up from 951 deaths in 2017. 

So, when will people struggling with opioid addiction have access to the implant for addiction? It may still be years before the implant for opioid addiction is available for treatment. It is still in the trial phase here in the U.S. 

In addition, the cost of DBS to insert the implant for addiction can cost up to $100,000. The high-tech nature of an implant for opiate addiction is a disadvantage. But, for many who have tried everything to beat their addiction, it can be worth it. 

Comprehensive Treatment Options for Opioid Addiction

The implant for opiate addiction can help maintain Recovery for Life. However, it isn’t a cure and should be used with a comprehensive treatment program. A combination of comprehensive treatment and an implant for opiate addiction offers a greater chance of beating your addiction.

Treatment programs at Sana Lake include:

  • Medical detox
  • Inpatient treatment
  • Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP)
  • Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP)
  • Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT)
  • Transitional housing

What many people don’t realize is addiction is also a mental health disorder. For this reason, individual and group therapies can be beneficial. Therapies help change your behaviors and attitude surrounding addiction, which increases the chances of Recovery for Life. 

Therapies offered at Sana Lake include:

  • Psychotherapy
  • Group therapy
  • Family therapy
  • Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
  • Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)
  • Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)

Get the Help You Deserve at Sana Lake Recovery

If you or a loved one struggles with substance use disorder, we can help you overcome the physical and mental issues of addiction. You may feel like you deserve to struggle with addiction, but we believe you deserve to enjoy a life free from addiction and full of happiness. Contact us to find out more. 


What is a Standard Drink?

What is a Standard Drink?

When most think of what is a standard drink they might assume it’s how much fills up their glass. Yet, this is a dangerous assumption that can lead to hospitalization. A standard drink is 14 grams of pure alcohol in the United States. This statistic comes directly from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA). 

Therefore, drinking isn’t inherently dangerous but can be. Since alcohol is so ingrained in American society, myths around it appear as truth. Understand the facts behind alcoholic beverages to avoid a drug dependency. 

What Is a Standard Drink of Wine?

It’s Friday night. A woman sits on the couch with two companions by her side: a cat and a nice bottle of pinot noir. Her Netflix binge has just begun and the night is young. She’s already had a glass of wine and ponders if she should drink another. Ultimately, she decides she’ll finish the bottle because wine is good for her heart. Right? 

Wrong! It’s a common misconception that wine is good for your heart, says Harvard University’s health blog. To continue, they note this comes from the idea of a debunked study dubbed the French paradox. For instance, the hypothesis was that French people have superb heart health from drinking wine despite a rich food diet. 

Facts about this debunked study: 

  • Brought in the fact that the Mediterranean diet includes red wine
  • Said the red and purple grape skins helped heart health 
  • French epidemiologists produced this research in the 1980s 
  • Health effects of alcohol haven’t been studied long-term to this day 
Over Drinking

Further, scientists concluded in this study that the polyphenols in red wine specifically ward off heart disease. The participants were mice. While mice benefit from these polyphenols, the evidence it wards off heart disease in humans is dubious. Yet the myth circulated regardless, leaving what is a standard drink a day up to the drinker. 

On that note, a standard drink of wine is around five fluid ounces of table wine. In other words, this is a little over half a cup. A good way to drink wine without self-sabotage is buying wine glasses that hold this amount or less. It’s less awkward than getting out the measuring cup on Italian night. 

Alcohol Content of Wine

First off, five fluid ounces of wine equates to around 12% pure alcohol. Another way to say this is that it has 14 grams of pure alcohol, which is what is a standard drink of wine. 

Different kinds of wines vary in terms of how much alcohol is in each bottle on average: 

  • Red – 13.5% alcohol by volume 
  • White – 10% alcohol by volume 
  • Rose – 12% alcohol by volume 
  • Wine cooler – 4-6% alcohol by volume 
  • Port – 18% alcohol by volume 
  • Sweet – 10% alcohol by volume  

In summary, a little more white wine is okay to drink than port wine. However, this can lead to overdrinking if one isn’t careful. Overall, it’s better to drink less than end up in the hospital for alcohol poisoning.  

What Is a Standard Drink of Beer? 

Many cultures celebrate beer. Oktoberfest is known around the world, which revolves around drinking copious amounts of beer and eating meat. In fact, the overconsumption of beer is so normalized that teenagers can likely describe what a beer funnel and a keg stand are. 

The diversity of beers takes up a whole section in your average grocery store. So, this begs the question: what is a standard drink of beer? One might be surprised to find it’s quite different than what they learned in college. 

A standard drink of beer according to the NIAAA, is 12 fluid ounces of regular beer. For instance, this is about an average can of beer. That is if the beer has around 5% alcohol by volume per can. But, different kinds of beer have varying levels of pure alcohol in each can. 

Does Light Beer Have Less Alcohol Than Dark Beer?

In short, light beer has less alcohol than dark beer. But, there isn’t much of a difference. The  NIAAA states that, “many light beers have almost as much alcohol as regular beer – about 85% as much.” To put it differently, beer on average has a 5% alcohol content. A light beer on average has a 4.2% alcohol content. 

What is a Standard Drink?

So, that 0.08% difference is negligible. Everything in moderation is okay. The misconception that light beer has much less alcohol can end in death by alcohol poisoning. 

What Is a Standard Drink of Liquor? 

In 2010, the LMFAO song “Shots” topped the billboard for 117 weeks. Basically, every pop radio blasted a song about getting drunk to ears both young and old. It’s no secret that Americans glorify chugging shots if this wasn’t enough evidence in itself. Liquor or distilled spirits are highly potent forms of alcohol that can be quite dangerous. 

While LMFAO clearly doesn’t understand what is a standard drink of liquor, we do. A standard drink of liquor is about 1.5 fluid ounces of alcohol. Why is it such a small amount? It’s because it’s extremely concentrated. 

Despite this, sugary drinks can mask how strong a beverage with liquor has inside. If out and about, make sure to specify how much liquor should be in a drink to the bartender. Otherwise, one won’t be able to tell how much he is drinking. They are tasty just as much as they are deadly without the right amount of caution. 

How Much Is in a Shot?

A standard shot has about 40% alcohol (usually 1.5 fluid ounces of alcohol). This equates to 14 grams of pure alcohol. The amount varies across the board as some liquors contain much more alcohol than others. 

Here are popular types of liquors: 

  • Vodka 
  • Tequila 
  • Rum 
  • Gin 
  • Whiskey 
  • Absynthe 

Only drink one shot per hour and with lots of water. A person might need to drink less depending on how strong the liquor is. It goes without saying that less is always more, especially when it comes to distilled spirits. 

How Media Distorts What Is a Standard Drink

A lesser-known fact about President Bill Clinton is that he standardized the national limit of a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) to drive. A level of 0.08% or higher will land someone in jail and a suspended license. A DUI is only a small repercussion of what could happen from drunk driving. 

Although this is the law nationwide, many movies romanticize drunk driving. Protagonists are often underage and end up with a slap on the wrist. Maybe a crashed car. They rarely end up dead, unlike reality. 

These movies all feature drunk driving: 

  • St. Vincent 
  • Groundhog Day 
  • Mighty Ducks 
  • Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas 
  • Rum Punch 
  • Leaving Las Vegas 
  • The 40-Year-Old Virgin 

The list above is just a small example of media that depicts drunk driving differently than the reality of it. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), approximately 30 Americans die from drunk driving every single day. In movies, a standard drink looks totally warped in comparison to the truth. 

The Difference Between Drinking Too Much and What Is a Standard Drink

Alcohol is legal, so many don’t realize the danger of drug dependency until it’s too late. The NIAAA reports that 14.1 million American adults suffered from an alcohol use disorder (AUD) in 2019. That’s 5.6% of the entire American adult population. Hence, alcohol can get out of control if a person doesn’t know the signs and symptoms of AUD. 

Signs and Symptoms of AUD 

 What is a standard drink legally, and what it is to an individual suffering from alcohol use disorder are two different ideas. Although, it probably didn’t start off that way. A drug dependency typically creeps up slowly. People unsuspecting can get caught in its clutches with no escape. 

Recognize these signs and symptoms of an alcohol use disorder before it’s too late: 

  • Inability to stop drinking 
  • Drinking much more than intended 
  • Engaging in risky activities while under the influence of alcohol 
  • Building up a tolerance to alcohol 
  • Drinking to mask a mental or physical disorder 
  • Blacking out from alcohol use 
  • Hurting relationships because of alcohol use
  • Inability to keep a job because of drinking 
  • Receiving a DUI or another legal repercussion as a result of alcohol consumption 
  • Feeling withdrawal symptoms when not drinking (ie: irritability, itching, drowsiness, insomnia, nausea, vomiting, etc.)

To conclude, this list isn’t comprehensive. To put it simply, if drinking interferes with someone’s ability to live a happy and healthy life, they have AUD. A drug dependency isn’t easy to kick. Most will need to seek an addiction treatment program to regain a sense of normalcy. 

Every person that suffers from AUD has a group of people that care for them deeply. If someone finds themself worried that a loved one has AUD, they should talk to them about it. Firstly, make sure they are sober. Then, ask them to meet in person at a specific time to discuss worries and the dangers of a lasting drug dependency. It’s an uncomfortable conversation, but there is no downside.  

Sana Lake Can Teach You What Is a Standard Drink and What Is Addiction 

It’s difficult to accept that you or a loved one suffers from AUD. You may have forgotten what is a standard drink and what it’s like to live a normal life. An alcohol-free life is hard to achieve when you have a drug dependency. But, you’re not alone. 

Sana Lake Recovery offers personalized programs for alcohol use disorder recovery in Dittmer, Missouri. We factor every part of a person’s life into their treatment to ensure lasting success. Contact us now if you or a loved one needs help with recovering now. 


guilt and shame in addiction

Guilt and Shame in Recovery

Many people that suffer from addiction feel guilt about the bad decisions that they’re making. Unfortunately, addiction is a strong disease that causes people to continue to make the same mistakes over and over again. As those that suffer from addiction make more and more mistakes, their guilt starts to persist and turn into shame. Once this happens, and you suffer from both shame and addiction, recovery seems nearly impossible. As difficult as it is overcoming shame in recovery, you need to do it to maintain sobriety.

What are Guilt and Addiction?

Guilt in addiction is when you feel remorse over a mistake that you made while under the influence of drugs. For example, if you promised yourself that you weren’t going to drink at your work holiday party, but got drunk anyway and slandered your boss’s name, you might wake up the next morning feeling guilty about being so mean and uncouth around your boss and co-workers. 

Feeling immediate guilt or remorse over personal wrongdoings and moral failures is natural. It’s what keeps people morally accountable for their actions. Plus, hopefully after you right your wrongs, guilt over a particular action or mistake will go away. 

Thus, feeling guilt in addiction is somewhat of a good thing. In fact, feeling guilt over a particular wrongdoing could be the wake-up call that you need to make you want to attend treatment. It’s when guilt persists to the point where you’re constantly speaking to yourself in a demeaning manner and questioning your overall self-worth on a regular basis that it turns into shame and becomes a negative and dangerous emotion. 

What are Shame and Addiction?

Shame and addiction is a persistent, self-loathing feeling that makes you feel inadequate and worthless. When people feel shame over something, they don’t just feel remorse over a particular action that they did. Instead, they feel that every particular action and mistake is a sign of their overall worthlessness. 

Thus, when a person commits a mistake, failure, or wrongdoing, he or she may initially feel guilt. When that person allows those feelings of guilt to persist too long though, it can turn into shame. 

Once a person feels shame and addiction, he or she will likely withdraw from others. This is because that person feels that he or she isn’t worth the time of others. People that constantly feel shame and addiction will even start to feel disconnected from themselves.

Many people suffer from guilt and shame in addiction.

People that feel shame and addiction will constantly tell themselves things like, “I don’t deserve to be loved,” “I suck at everything,” “I’m a failure,” “I’m never going to be good enough,” etc. When people that suffer from addiction are constantly telling themselves statements such as these, it allows them to wallow in their addiction longer. This is because people that feel shame and addiction don’t feel like they’re even worth recovery. 

Guilt vs. Shame in Addiction

Many people use the terms of guilt and shame interchangeably. These two terms are two different things though. As we mentioned earlier in the article, guilt is a feeling of remorse over a particular mistake. 

Shame, on the other hand, is a constant feeling of inadequacy and unworthiness. Thus, while you may feel guilty for being mean to someone one day, you’ll get over it once you right your wrong and apologize. On the other hand, when a person feels shame, he or she uses a guilty moment as a form of justification for his or her total unworthiness as a human being. 

How Does Guilt Feed Addiction and Fuel Relapse

When used properly, guilt shouldn’t feed addiction. In fact, feeling guilt is often good for people that suffer from addiction. Guilt is what can make someone that suffers from addiction want to make a change in his or her life. 

Guilt about a specific incident can even be what ends up making a person want to go to treatment. This is because people that feel guilt and addiction are likely recognizing specific alcohol or drug-related mistakes that they made. Thus, people that feel guilt are also likely wanting to improve on or fix their past mistakes. It just so happens that the best way to fix addiction-related mistakes is through treatment.

How Does Shame Feed Addiction and Fuel Relapse

Shame is a much more constant and overarching negative emotion than guilt. People that feel shame and addiction feel as if they’ll never be able to stop using drugs. Thus, feeling shame and addiction can cause someone to feel like treatment isn’t worth the investment since he or she will likely fail at it. Thus, shame feeds addiction and helps a person suffer from addiction longer. 

When it comes to relapse, guilt alone doesn’t necessarily fuel it. If anything, guilt can help keep a person from relapsing. This is because feeling guilt about a particular addiction-related action can remind someone why sobriety is important. It’s, once again, only when guilt turns into shame that it starts to truly fuel relapse.

Shame fuels relapse. This is because people that have low self-esteem while in recovery will start to feel like they are unworthy of happiness whenever they make a mistake. Thus, people that feel shame in recovery will self-sabotage themselves and start abusing substances again. By relapsing, people that feel shame and addiction are telling themselves that they don’t deserve to be happy in recovery. 

How to Heal Guilt in Addiction Recovery

Step One: Admit Your Guilt

To heal guilt in addiction recovery, you must first admit to yourself what you’re feeling guilty about. Acknowledging the truth is always the first step in recovery. 

Step Two: Right Your Wrongs

Once you’ve done this, you must try to right your wrongs. You can do this by asking for forgiveness from the people that you wronged while suffering from addiction. Even if people deny your apologies, at least you can say that you tried to do the right thing. 

Step Three: Forgive Yourself

Once you try to right your wrongs, the next step in healing guilt in addiction recovery is to forgive yourself. This step is important because if you don’t forgive yourself for the things that you feel guilty about, your guilt could turn into shame. 

How to Heal Shame and Addiction Recovery

Step One: Identify When You’re Shaming Yourself

If you do suffer from shame and addiction recovery, the first thing that you need to do to start overcoming shame is to identify when you’re shaming yourself. To do this, you need to distinguish between making a mistake and being a hopeless cause. 

At the end of the day, you can bounce back from any mistake. Thus, stop telling yourself that you’re “always” something negative like a failure or a lost cause. If you are saying these things to yourself, you’re likely acting out in shame. 

Step Two: Change Your Thinking and Accept Yourself

Once you identify when shame arises, you must then change the way that you’re thinking. You must also learn to accept yourself for who you are. 

No one is perfect. Thus, instead of dwelling in your shame, remind yourself that you’re just a normal person that makes mistakes. 

Step Three: Redefine Your Self-Worth

Once you’ve accepted yourself for the wonderfully flawed person that you are, you must then redefine your self-worth. To redefine your self-worth, stop labeling yourself with negative titles, like “loser” or “failure.” Instead, remind yourself that your self-worth doesn’t come from your achievements or your failures. It comes from you being someone that’s trying to be a better human being every day. 

Dealing with Guilt and Shame in Life-Long Recovery

Like with addiction, you’re probably always going to have to be proactive about the way you deal with guilt and shame to maintain long-term sobriety. That’s because no matter how far into recovery that you get, you’re always going to make mistakes in life. These mistakes will bring about feelings of guilt and shame and trigger your desire to want to misuse substances. Thus, it’s important to have a plan for how you’re going to manage guilt and shame in addiction recovery long-term. 

Don’t Let Guilty Moments Last Too Long

One way to manage guilt and shame in addiction recovery long-term is to make sure that you never let your guilty moments last too long. By this, we mean that you should proactively heal your guilt anytime that you feel that it may trigger your addiction. 

Thus, whenever you feel addiction-related guilt eating at you, practice the following healing guilt steps. First, admit your guilt. Second, right your wrongs by asking for forgiveness from whomever you wronged. Third, forgive yourself for your wrongdoings. 

Proactively healing your guilt while in addiction recovery is important because it can otherwise turn into shame. Guilt turning into shame is a bad thing because overcoming shame is much harder than overcoming guilt. 

Redirect the Way You Think

To start overcoming shame and addiction recovery long-term, you must make it a practice to redirect the way you think. You should also deal with stress and mistakes better. Thus, anytime you start feeling down about yourself, you should immediately identify whether or not what your feeling is shame or not. You should also remind yourself that your self-worth is not in your achievements or mistakes. 

One great way to deal with shame and addiction recovery long-term is to speak daily positive affirmations about yourself. By reminding yourself of your positive traits and true self-worth on a daily basis, it will make it easier for you to deal with shame when it arises.

Sana Lake Recovery Is Here to Help You Throughout Your Addiction Recovery Journey

At Sana Lake Recovery, we understand how difficult it is to overcome addiction. We also understand all the guilt and shame that arises when one does recover from addiction. 

That’s why we provide different therapies, recovery planning, relapse prevention planning, continuum care, and intervention services to all of our patients. Through such treatment and aftercare services, patients can learn how to manage their guilt and shame in addiction recovery. To learn more about Sana Lake and the services that we offer, contact us today!

Recovery through Art Therapy

The Healing Power of Art Therapy for Addiction

If you are reading this, you must be thinking about addiction treatment. Art therapy for addiction is a holistic form of treatment. Combined with other alternative and traditional therapies, art therapy for substance abuse helps heal from addiction. 

Art therapy has been used for many years, but more so in the last few years. For instance, bookstores have a wide selection of intricate adult coloring books. Not only do they help pass the time, but they also lower stress levels. However, books don’t replace professional art therapy for addiction. 

What is Art Therapy?

The American Art Therapy Association (AATA) defines art therapy as therapeutic art-making in treatment.  Art therapy helps in healing those with illness, trauma, and life challenges. For example, drawing, painting, sculpting, or writing boosts personal development and recovery from addiction. 

The study in Art Therapy: Journal of the American Art Therapy Association shows just 45 minutes of art therapy reduces stress levels. This is true even if you don’t have any artistic talent. It also works equally well for men and women. 

The various focuses of art therapy for substance abuse include:

  • Explore feelings
  • Reconcile emotional conflict
  • Build self-awareness
  • Manage addiction and other negative behaviors
  • Develop social skills
  • Improve reality orientation
  • Reduce anxiety
  • Increase self-esteem
  • Prevent recurrence of use

Types of Art Therapy for Addiction

Art therapy for substance abuse uses many forms of artistic pursuits. The various forms of art therapy for addiction typically include:

  • Painting
  • Drawing
  • Coloring
  • Sculpting
  • Scrapbooking
  • Collages
  • Photography
  • Digital Art

Art therapy can be abstract or have a specific assignment. If you have a specific project, you will typically be given a question to answer with your art. However, abstract art encourages you to express your thoughts and feelings. 

Who Can Benefit from Art Therapy for Addiction?

Anyone who is struggling with substance use and other mental health disorders can benefit from art therapy. Creating art improves the mental well-being of those struggling with:

  • ADD and ADHD
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Eating disorders
  • Relationship issues
  • Trauma’Substance Use Disorder

Some people fear they will lack the skills for art therapy. But, what they don’t realize is it’s not about being an artist. Art therapy for substance abuse is about finding meaning and a connection. 

How Is Art Therapy for Addiction Used in Treatment?

Using art in therapy is completely different than art therapy itself. For instance, using art in therapy typically means using art to find an end. However, art therapy uses the creative process of art as a healing tool. 

Advantages of art therapy for substance abuse include:

  • Helping you cope with your feelings in a non-destructive way
  • Helps you and your therapist understand your feelings and repressed emotions
  • Makes you feel empowered in your recovery and solving problems without drugs and alcohol

Many people have a hard time communicating. Therefore art therapy helps them express their thoughts and feelings. Art therapy for substance abuse specifically helps those with sexual or physical abuse.

Certain drugs may also cause long-term issues that interfere with communication skills. Since the 1950s, art therapy for addiction has been providing self-expression, emotional releases, and help adjusting to recovery. 

Art therapy for substance abuse helps recovery by:

  • Decreases the denial of substance use disorder
  • Increases the motivation to change
  • Provides a safe emotional outlet
  • Lessens the shame of addiction

What are the Goals of Art Therapy for Addiction?

The goal of art therapy for substance abuse is similar to all treatments, to promote healthy functioning. It aids in resolving emotions, experiences, and issues that lead to and worsen your addiction. These feelings and experiences can be too painful to talk about. 

However, art therapy for substance abuse helps you express yourself through ink, clay, paint, and other means. There are many reasons for addiction, such as trauma, stress, and mental health disorders. But, art therapy gives you a sense of control that often lacks in addiction. 

7 Benefits of Art Therapy for Addiction

You can greatly benefit from art therapy for substance abuse. In art therapy, you work through some of the 12 Steps. To begin with, self-reflection is a big part of the 12-steps. Art therapy for substance abuse allows you to put your feelings of denial and trauma into something physical. 

#1 Visual Communication

Art therapy for substance abuse uses many forms of artistic pursuits.

Entering into addiction treatment can be challenging. Let’s face it, talking to professionals, who are strangers, is difficult. After detox, your body is free of drugs and alcohol, and you can become ashamed of things you’ve done while using. You will also face the issues that led to using drugs and alcohol. 

Just thinking about past trauma and behaviors can be overwhelming. Furthermore, having to talk about them to strangers stop people from seeking recovery. But, art therapy for substance abuse gives you another way to communicate.

#2 Personal Breakthroughs

Art therapy for substance abuse can lead to important personal breakthroughs. Likewise, these advances are not typically possible in traditional treatments alone. Self-worth is generally the greatest breakthrough in art therapy for substance abuse. 

#3 Self-Reflection

Addiction causes a false sense of reality. The distorted reality is not only with the world around you but with yourself. However, art therapy for addiction can help you see the changes your making. For instance, drawing or sculpting yourself along the recovery journey can show how recovery enables you to see yourself differently. 

#4 Self-Confidence

A common cause of addiction is low self-esteem. For instance, if you view yourself as worthless, that’s how you will act. But, with art therapy for substance abuse, you build a sense of accomplishment and progression. 

#5 Emotional Healing

In art therapy for substance abuse, you explore and release your emotions without words. Some people struggle with expressing painful thoughts and experiences. But, art therapy for addiction allows for safe expression. It also helps improve emotional issues, such as depression and anxiety. 

#6 Self-Discovery

You can alter your life’s path with one positive experience. For example, if you lose a lot of weight, you may become a personal trainer or health advocate.

In the same way, art therapy can lead you to share your experiences by becoming an art therapist. Because art therapy for substance abuse aids in self-discovery, you can change your whole future in recovery. 

#7 Prevent Recurrence of Use

One main focus of art therapy for substance abuse is relapse prevention. In treatment, you will build the skills and tools to cope with daily triggers. 

Art therapy for substance abuse is a helpful long-term holistic therapy to cope with feelings and triggers. Above all, the therapy that gave you the power to overcome substance use can promote Recovery for Life. 

Group Art Therapy for Addiction

You may find you make more progress one-on-one with a therapist. However, some people find group art therapy works better for them. A key part of group art therapy for addiction is sharing the different artistic processes and results.

When you share your art pieces and your story behind it, others can relate and share their experiences. Giving and receiving support through art therapy allows others to see your recovery journey while inspiring others to maintain recovery. 

Dopamine Release from Art Therapy for Addiction

Whenever you experience pleasure, dopamine is released. This release makes you happier, which increasing recovery from depression and anxiety. In fact, more doctors are prescribing activities such as art therapy for overall well-being. 

Art Therapy During Addiction Recovery

You may believe drugs or alcohol make you more creative. However, it’s just the opposite. Drugs and alcohol stifle creativity. Because many people in recovery struggle with understanding how they feel, art therapy plays a crucial role in recovery. 

Art therapy for substance abuse helps you express:

  • Your challenging feelings
  • Your traumatic memories
  • Your self-loathing thoughts

Combining Art Therapy with Other Holistic and Traditional Therapies

Holistic treatment considers your entire wellbeing, specifically your mind, body, and spirit. Holistic therapies are often known as “alternative” forms of treatment. Using holistic therapies such as art therapy offers countless benefits. 

Holistic therapies include:

  • Yoga
  • Mindfulness
  • Art therapy
  • Music therapy
  • Acupuncture
  • Equine therapy
  • Nutritional therapy

Traditional therapies for addiction have many benefits. Psychotherapy is a big part of traditional recovery. Individual therapy helps you recognize and work through past traumas and mental health issues. 

Traditional therapies include:

  • Individual therapy
  • Group therapy
  • Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
  • Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)
  • Pharmacotherapy
  • Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)

Combining both holistic and traditional therapies is complimentary and straightforward. In fact, most doctors recommend a comprehensive treatment plan with traditional and holistic therapies. This treatment plan can help you feel more in control of your recovery. 

Art Therapy for Long-Term Addiction Recovery

Addiction and mental health disorders are chronic disorders. For this reason, these disorders require chronic lifetime treatment to maintain recovery. Completing a treatment program is not the end of treating your addiction. 

Continuing to use art therapy helps maintain your recovery. Daily life is full of stressors and triggers that can lead to the recurrence of use. When you struggle to understand your feelings or cope with cravings, art therapy for substance abuse can calm you and put things in perspective. 

Find Recovery through Art Therapy at Sana Lake Recovery

If you or someone you love is interested in art therapy for addiction or other holistic therapies, we have the program to help you. At Sana Lake Recovery, we provide a range of treatment options to help you reach Recovery for Life. Contact us today to find out more. 


rehab instead of jail

Is it Possible to Substitute Rehab for DUI Jail Time?

Driving under the influence can be a dangerous situation for you and the people around you. Not only can you cause harm to yourself but you can injure or potentially kill another person. A person may be suffering from alcoholism or alcohol misuse underneath this situation. In some circumstances, a person may be able to attend rehab instead of jail time. 

This is dictated by a couple of different factors and may not be available depending on the state. Rehab can be an excellent way of growing and learning from your mistakes. DUI help through rehab can be extremely beneficial and much more productive than jail time. There are several things a person can do to attend DUI rehab instead of jail. Getting comprehensive help from qualified professionals can help a person a lot. 

At Sana Lake, we want to help you get to a better place. Alcohol can take over a person’s life and cause them to act dangerously and carelessly. Our passionate staff is ready to help you improve and become sober. Rehab can be an option instead of going to jail for months or even years. Let’s take a look at the ways a person may be able to attend rehab instead of jail time and how Sana Lake can help you today!

What is DUI?

DUI stands for driving under the influence, specifically under the influence of alcohol. This goes for anyone operating a vehicle and can be applied to more than just a car. A person can receive a DUI for operating a watercraft, mopeds, and even lawnmowers if they are under the influence. If a person is caught driving a vehicle while intoxicated they are arrested and charged. This is a very serious offense and can damage a person’s record and (potentially) their life.

dui rehab instead of jail

There are serious consequences for driving intoxicated, not only with the law but with those around you. Every year, hundreds of thousands of people are injured or killed due to car accidents involving a drunk driver. In some severe cases, a person dealing with alcohol use disorder (AUD) may drive under the influence a multitude of times. Driving under the influence causes a massive risk for those driving around the person and themselves. 

When a person initially gets a DUI it is considered a misdemeanor. However, if anyone is injured or killed due to the incident (under the influence of alcohol or drugs), a person will be charged with a felony. There are some states that immediately charge a person with a felony if their BAC (blood alcohol concentration) is high. However, in most cases, the standard is a BAC that is 0.15 or higher. This is a huge red flag that comes with consequences.

The Severe Consequences of a DUI

Apart from being charged with a felony or misdemeanor, there are other consequences for driving under the influence of drugs. It is important to know the consequences of a person’s actions so you can plan accordingly. This of course comes down to a case-by-case basis. How much you were drinking, who was injured, and other factors can make the consequences worse. Other consequences of a DUI include:

  • The intense expenses for the DUI (court bonds, towing charges, attorney, trials, etc.) 
  • Ramifications to a person’s driving privileges (restricted, revoked, or suspended driver’s license). Note that those with first-time offenders may just have their license suspended for 90 days (this of course depends on the case) 
  • Probation for a period of time
  • The possibility of an alcohol education program
  • Possible jail time 
  • The chance of paying more fines after conviction 
  • A requirement to undergo substance use disorder treatment

A DUI is a serious offense that can cost a person thousands of dollars and sometimes, even their life. It is important to get serious help if you or a loved one is struggling with drug addiction. It can take one bad decision to cost someone their life. Under no circumstance should you or anyone you know drive under the influence of drugs. Be smart and think about the consequences that could occur if you are not careful. 

Avoiding Jail if a Person is Arrested for DUI

Every case of DUI is different and there are several factors that determine whether you will go to jail or perhaps rehab. However, the most telling factor is how much a person has to drink when they are arrested. 

If a person’s BAC is very high, they will most definitely be going to jail. Another big factor of whether you go straight to jail over rehab is compliance. It is important to comply and follow the requests of the police officers arresting you. As a citizen, you have your individual rights but being kind and compliant can go a long way in the future. 

Some states of different laws when it comes to aiding alcoholics who are facing DUI charges. This varies greatly from state to state. In some states like California, a first-time offender can avoid jail altogether (this varies depending on the case and any injuries/deaths involved). In cases where injury or high speeding are involved, a person will go straight to jail, even on a first-time offense. With this in mind, compliance with court requests and seeking rehab help can help a person avoid jail.

It is worth noting that if this is a person’s third or fourth offense, they will have a much more severe sentence. Jail time is almost guaranteed if a person has repeated offenses over the last 10 years. However, there are things you can do to ensure you can look for DUI rehab instead of jail 

Addiction Treatment Instead of Jail Time

Seeking a residential rehab (like Sana Lake) can be a great alternative to jail time. Residential treatment usually has a person staying in a rehab center with 24/7 supervision and assistance. This can be extremely beneficial and can help a person cope with their alcohol or drug problem with professional help. 

The treatment plan will most likely have to be laid out for the court, along with meeting obligations and program agreements. A person will need approval from the judge (this is where consulting a lawyer can help in these matters). 

The quality of the treatment center also plays a role in whether or not you can attend DUI rehab instead of jail. At Sana Lake, we provide quality care as we take all factors in mind when treating you or a loved one. Residential rehab can be a great alternative to jail time and can provide long-term sobriety in the process.

Depending on the case you can also look for possible outpatient treatment. Outpatient treatment allows a person to live out their life while attending weekly sessions. This is typically for those who have prior responsibilities back at home (work, school, kids, etc.). However, the judge may be skeptical about outpatient treatment because of its need for transportation and accessibility. Other factors like your compliance, the detail of the DUI, and your age can have an impact on the decision. 

Addiction and Alcohol Use Disorder Treatment

If a person is able to trade for jail time for DUI help, they can now focus on comprehensive addiction treatment. Drugs and alcohol can have a serious negative on a person’s body, mind, and behavior (hence the DUI). Luckily, there are evidence-based therapy and treatment options to help someone out of their hole of addiction. At the end of the day getting help can be the difference between a life of stress and addiction and a life of sobriety and mental ease. 


Detox is usually the first step of any alcohol or drug-related addiction. Detox completely rids the body of any and all alcohol. During the process, a person will experience the withdrawal effects of stopping their drug intake. This is where our staff at Sana Lake come in to make sure the process goes smoothly and safely. If you are able to go to rehab instead of jail time, your residential treatment will begin with detoxification. 

Therapy Options

Addiction and alcohol abuse is just as much of a mental thing as it is a physical one. Different therapies are used to pinpoint the reasons why a person uses drugs in the first place. In almost all cases of drug addiction, therapies like cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), which focuses on behavioral and thought changes for the better. As well as dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) in some cases. Each can help you cope with the stresses of life and any cravings you may experience. 

Let Sana Lake Help you Today!

Even with a DUI, there are better alternatives with DUI rehab instead of jail. After that, it’s about getting quality care for long-term sobriety. At Sana Lake, we want to help you towards a better life for you and your family. Let our passionate team help you today with our drug and alcohol treatment program. Contact us today to learn more about our treatment options and addiction resources. 

Smoking Embalming Fluid: What You Should Know

Smoking Embalming Fluid: What You Should Know

When people suffer from drug addictions, they’re willing to do anything to get high. This includes consuming toxic chemicals. This is exactly the case when it comes to those that smoke embalming fluids. 

People that smoke embalming fluids only do so to dissolve PCP. They also do so to enhance the effects of smoking other substances like marijuana or tobacco cigarettes. 

Still, doing so is dangerous because of all the chemicals inside of the embalming fluid and all of the toxins inside of the PCP. In fact, the side effects of smoking embalming fluid and PCP are so severe that the combination of them with marijuana or tobacco cigarettes, otherwise known as wet drugs, can lead to its own form of addiction. To treat this addiction, you’ll have to attend wet drug use, embalming fluid, or PCP detox and addiction treatment. 

What is Embalming Fluid?

Embalming fluid is the liquid that’s used on dead bodies to preserve, disinfect, and sanitize them. People also use embalming fluid to view the dead bodies in their natural-looking appearance at funerals or in medical research labs.

 Embalming fluid is made out of toxic chemicals. The combination of chemicals that are within embalming fluid is formaldehyde, methanol, glutaraldehyde, and others.  

What is PCP?

PCP, otherwise known as phencyclidine, is a potent hallucinogen and an illegal man-made drug that’s used for getting high. Another name for PCP is angel dust. Because of how easy and accessible it is to buy the chemicals within PCP and make the PCP substance, PCP is popular to use. 

PCP comes in a powder or liquid form. You need to add hydrochloride (HCI) or concentrated HCI acid to liquid PCP to turn it into its pure powder form. This pure powder form of PCP is white and crystal-like and can dissolve in water. This powder can also get pressed into a tablet. 

The impure powder form of PCP cannot dissolve in water. Therefore, you need to mix it with embalming fluid to dissolve it and turn it into a liquid.  

People normally make PCP in makeshift labs. As a result, the color and consistency of PCP can vary greatly. Therefore, the color of PCP can range from crystal white to tan or even brown. The consistency of PCP can range from a powder to a gummy mass. 

Why Do People Combine PCP and Embalming Fluid Together?

When people combine PCP with embalming fluid, it’s to get the impure powder form of PCP to dissolve. That way they can use that mixture to now take their marijuana or tobacco cigarette high to the next level. 

Therefore, people began to smoke embalming fluid more for the PCP than the embalming fluid itself. Despite this fact, smoking embalming fluid gives off similar effects as smoking PCP. 

What is a Sherm?

A sherm, or shermstick, is the term that people use to refer to marijuana or tobacco cigarettes dipped in PCP, embalming fluid, or both. The name “sherm” was given to these PCP dipped cigarettes due to the fact that they look like brown paper Nat Sherman cigarettes. Other names for sherms, or tobacco or marijuana cigarettes dipped in PCP, embalming fluid, or both, include fry, dip, water, superweed, or wet drugs. 

Side Effects You’ll Experience When Smoking Embalming Fluid, PCP or Both

When you smoke embalming fluid, PCP, or both through a marijuana or tobacco cigarette, the side effects are severe. The most common side effects of wet drug use include a euphoric feeling, an adrenaline rush, hallucinations, feeling detached from reality, and self-delusions. 

Because smoking embalming fluid, PCP, or both can cause such a severe separation from reality, many people smoke them to escape their lives. In fact, the effects of smoking embalming fluid and PCP overpowers that of the marijuana or tobacco cigarettes that people use to dip into the embalming fluid solution in the first place.  

The strength of effects that a PCP and embalming fluid solution can cause on a person is unpredictable. This is because many of the PCP toxins don’t get filtered out in the inconsistent making of the drug.  

If the PCP and embalming fluid solution are especially strong, the effects of wet drug use can include violent and aggressive behavior, reduced ability to feel pain, blackouts or memory loss, impaired coordination, respiratory depression or failure, schizophrenic like symptoms, and accidental suicide or self-injury due to delusional thinking.

The side effects of smoking embalming liquid are more severe than that of smoking PCP. This is because of how toxic embalming fluid is. Some of the side effects of smoking embalming fluid include seizures, lung damage, brain damage, cancer, destruction of body tissue, immediate coma, or death. 

Peculiar Behaviors of Those That Use Wet Drugs, Embalming Fluid, and/or PCP

There are numerous stories of people becoming completely out of their minds once they smoke embalming fluid and/or PCP. In fact, there are reports of people jumping off buildings and saying they felt like Superman after smoking embalming fluid and/or PCP.  

People have also exhibited sudden extreme strength after using embalming fluid and/or PCP. As crazy as the behaviors that people that smoke embalming fluid and/or PCP are, many people reported blacking out and not remembering their actions afterward. This is due to the memory blocking effects of these substances.

Thus, it’s no surprise that many people under the influence of these substances commit crimes. Regular people can even commit murder or abuse when under the influence of embalming fluids or PCP. 

How Dealers Get Embalming Fluid

Embalming fluid is a legal substance. Therefore it isn’t very hard to get your hands on it. All you need to do is go to the normal places that would use embalming fluid. Those places include funeral homes and morgues. You can also purchase embalming fluid from chemical compounds or online. 

When drug dealers buy embalming fluid, they usually do so through people that they know. Those people usually work in funeral homes, hospitals, morgues, or other places that might contain embalming fluid. That way the purchase of the embalming fluid isn’t as easily traceable to them. 

Wet Drug Use, Embalming Fluid, and PCP Overdose

When you use PCP or embalming fluid, you’re possibly setting yourself up for an overdose, cancer, or death. When a person overdoses when he or she starts to smoke embalming fluid, PCP, or both through wet drug use, that person experiences extremely high body temperatures. 

Wet Drug Use, Embalming Fluid, and PCP Health Hazards

Embalming fluid and PCP are so toxic that using them can cause you to develop cancer. That’s why you should avoid using these substances. 

Wet Drug Use, Embalming Fluid, and PCP Detox

Embalming fluid and PCP are toxic and strong at the same time. The use of them together or alone could cause severe and immediate addiction. As a result, to overcome an addiction to embalming fluid, PCP, or both through wet drug use, you must attend medical detox.

Wet drug use symptoms include intense cravings, disorientation and confusion, and depression and anxiety. Although not deadly, these withdrawal symptoms are bad enough to cause someone to want to abuse the substances again to cope. This then can turn into a relapse. That is why medical detox is necessary to get clean and sober from these substances. 

Wet Drug Use, Embalming Fluid, and PCP Addiction Treatment

After completing medical detox you need to attend inpatient or residential treatment. This is because inpatient or residential treatment will contain 24/7 care and supervision. 

Containing such extensive care and supervision is particularly important during the first few weeks of treatment for such addictive substances. This is because that is the time period when you’re most vulnerable to relapsing. 

If you still feel that you need support after your addiction treatment is over to transition into real life, you can even look into staying at sober living homes. Staying at sober living homes will allow you to receive extra therapy and aftercare services. 

Sober living homes also provide you with the freedom to get and maintain a job and practice real-life skills in the real-life world. Thus, you’ll get the added support that you need to transition into the real-world after treatment.  

Sana Lake Recovery Is Here for You

At Sana Lake Recovery Center, our goal is to heal people from substance abuse and mental health disorders for life. We aim to do this by giving the public new tools to use every day. 

Here at Sana Lake, we offer a wide variety of detox and addiction treatment services. Thus, whether you need to attend medication-assisted treatment, inpatient treatment, detox, family therapy, sober living, or something else, we can serve you here at Sanna Lake. We can also personalize your treatment plan. That way you can receive some form of treatment for unusual substances like embalming fluid and PCP. 

If you want to learn more about Sana Lake and the treatment programs and therapy services that we offer, contact us today! We are excitedly awaiting your call.

Can You Take Advil and Drink Alcohol?

Can You Take Advil and Drink Alcohol?

Many of us know that mixing alcohol and any medication has risks. But, can you take Advil and drink alcohol? Are there ibuprofen alcohol interactions? Medications containing ibuprofen have serious side effects. However, mixing alcohol and Advil increases your risk of liver issues and gastrointestinal bleeding. 

What is Ibuprofen?

Ibuprofen is in a drug class known as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). NSAIDs are useful in easing pain and inflammation. Advil not only treats these issues, but it also reduces fever. 

Ibuprofen is available over-the-counter under these brands:

  • Addaprin
  • Advil
  • Cedaprin
  • I-Prin
  • Midol
  • Motrin
  • NeoProfen
  • Profen IB
  • Proprinal
  • Ultraprin

Prescription drugs such as Duexis also contain ibuprofen.  Duexis relieves arthritis pain without upsetting your stomach. 

Is it Safe to Take Advil and Drink Alcohol?

Ibuprofen is typically safe as long as you follow the directions. However, the problem with mixing alcohol and Advil is they both irritate the stomach. Also, alcohol increases acid production in your stomach. 

This increase in acid decreases the protection of your digestive tract. As a result, you damage your delicate gastrointestinal tissue. For instance, high doses and long-term use of Advil can cause your stomach to bleed. It also can lead to ulcers. However, drinking alcohol increases this risk. Drinking alcohol also increases the risk of dependence and addiction.

Mixing Alcohol and Advil: Stomach Ulcers and Bleeding

Advil irritates your digestive tract. For this reason, doctors tell you to take Advil with food. When you take Advil for a long time or in high doses, it increases your risk of stomach ulcers and bleeding. 

Alcohol also irritates the stomach and digestive tract. Furthermore, mixing alcohol and Advil increases your risk of ulcers and bleeding. However, the risk of ulcers and bleeding increases the longer you drink alcohol and take Advil. 

Alcohol and Ibuprofen Leads to Gastrointestinal Bleeding

Ibuprofen should always be taken with food because it irritates the digestive tract. Ibuprofen is also associated with peptic ulcer disease when overused. The irritation from ibuprofen can lead to gastrointestinal (GI) bleeding or perforation. 

Symptoms of severe GI bleeding includes:

  • Stomach pain
  • Heartburn
  • Bloody vomit
  • Vomit with brown granules like coffee grounds
  • Blood in stools
  • Black or tarry stools

Combining alcohol and ibuprofen increases your risk and severity of GI bleeds. 

Can You Take Advil and Drink Alcohol: Kidney Problems

Your kidneys filter toxic substances from your body. These toxins include alcohol. As a result, the more you drink, the harder your kidneys work. So, when someone asks, can you take Advil and drink alcohol? The answer is no. 

NSAIDs such as Advil affect kidney function. NSAIDs stop the production of a kidney enzyme. By halting this enzyme, Advil can lower your inflammation and pain. However, this also interferes with kidney function. 

The effects of alcohol also put a strain on your kidneys. The National Kidney Foundation states that regular heavy drinking doubles your risk of chronic kidney disease. Although your risk of kidney disease is low if your healthy and occasionally take Advil. But, Advil can be dangerous if you already have kidney issues. 

Symptoms of kidney problems include:

  • A decrease in urine output
  • Retaining fluid in the legs
  • Shortness of breath
  • Weakness and fatigue
  • Nausea
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Chest pain or pressure

Risk of Liver Damage when Combining Alcohol and Advil

Although combining alcohol and Tylenol is more commonly linked to liver damage, so is alcohol and Advil. This damage causes a backflow of bile into the liver. The damage also leads to liver cell damage. 

Symptoms of liver damage include:

  • Extreme weakness and fatigue
  • Abdominal pain on the left side under the ribs
  • Jaundice or yellowing of the skin and eyes
  • Loss of appetite
  • Dark urine
  • Pale stools

Advil can also lead to developing fatty liver disease. This development is because Advil interferes with fat metabolism in the blood. Moreover, alcohol contributes to fatty liver disease. If you continue combining alcohol and Advil, it can lead to cirrhosis. 

Alcohol and Ibuprofen: Increases Drowsiness

On their own, alcohol and ibuprofen cause drowsiness. However, combining alcohol and ibuprofen intensifies the tiredness. As a result, you can feel extremely sleepy. It can also make it impossible to function normally. If you are drinking alcohol, do not drive. Alcohol slows down your reaction time and impairs coordination. 

Risks of Mixing Alcohol and Advil in Older Adults

The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism reports, older adults risk more complications when mixing alcohol and Advil. The higher risk is because, the older you get, the harder it is to break down alcohol. Also, as you age, you typically take more medications. Therefore, if you drink, you risk more complications from interactions.

Are There Any Ibuprofen Alcohol Interactions?

If your honest, you probably never thought about alcohol and Advil interacting. Furthermore, most of us don’t think about ibuprofen alcohol interaction with other drugs. But, there are many drug interactions with ibuprofen and alcohol. These drugs include:

  • Anticoagulants including Coumadin (warfarin) and Plavix (clopidogrel)
  • Oral corticosteroids including prednisone
  • Other NSAIDs including aspirin, Aleve (naproxen), and Celebrex (celecoxib)
  • Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors including Prozac (fluoxetine) and Zoloft (sertraline)
  • Serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors including Effexor (venlafaxine) and Cymbalta (duloxetine)

If you take alcohol and ibuprofen, and any of the above drugs, it can intensify all the substances’ effects. For example, ibuprofen can cause GI bleeding. If you are blood thinners, it can increase the risk of bleeding. Furthermore, alcohol enhances the effects of blood thinners. 

Long-Term Effects of Combining Alcohol and Advil

If you’re like many people, you don’t see a problem with combining alcohol and Advil. But, mixing alcohol and any drug is risky. For instance, it can lead to severe health issues and substance use disorder (SUD). 

Although it’s common in social circles, alcohol is extremely addictive. These risks of consuming alcohol can cause short-term health issues. But the long-term problems can be severe and life-threatening. 

Mixing alcohol and Advil effects include:

  • Increasing sensitivity to alcohol and Advil
  • Developing a dependence on alcohol
  • Risk of alcohol use disorder (AUD)
  • Increase risk of overdose or death

Although many people use ibuprofen to ease joint and muscle pain, it can be dangerous. If you or someone you love regularly mixes alcohol and Advil, it can be a sign AUD. Find out your treatment options through Sana Lake Recovery. 

How Can You Safely Detox from Alcohol?

If you are struggling with alcohol misuse or AUD, you are not alone. Many people fear going through withdrawal when they stop drinking alcohol. Depending on your dependence, withdrawal can be uncomfortable, or it could be life-threatening. However, a medical detox program can help ease the discomfort and risks of withdrawal. 

Common symptoms of alcohol withdrawal include:

  • Anxiety 
  • Irritability
  • Insomnia
  • Depression
  • Overly tired
  • Tremors
  • Mood swings
  • Confusion
  • Nightmares
  • Sweating
  • Headaches
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Racing heart rate
  • Pale skin

Severe Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms

The most severe withdrawal symptom is delirium tremens or DTs. Generally, 3 to 5 percent of heavy drinkers have DTs in detox. However, DTs can be life-threatening. So, if you or a loved one is having DTs, seek emergency help. 

Symptoms of DTs include:

  • Fever
  • Extreme agitation
  • Seizures
  • Extreme confusion
  • Hallucinations
  • High blood pressure

Because alcohol withdrawal can be life-threatening, it’s crucial to detox under medical supervision. Medically supervised detox generally provides support and medication to help keep you comfortable. Support is vital to help you work through the mental aspect of withdrawal and to ensure further treatment. 

Treatment for Alcohol Use Disorder

Once you have completed detox, you are ready to enter treatment. Centers like Sana Lake Recovery offer a variety of treatment options. You may choose from inpatient, outpatient, intensive outpatient, or partial hospitalization treatment. 

Inpatient or residential treatment is considered the highest level of care. However, each treatment program provides a high level of care and a structured environment for recovery. Depending on the severity of your AUD and your home environment, among other factors, inpatient treatment may be your best chance at recovery. 

Whether you choose inpatient or one of our outpatient programs, you will typically have access to the same therapy types. Therapies for AUD may include:

  • Group Therapy
  • Individual Therapy
  • Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy
  • Dialectical Behavior Therapy
  • Family Therapy
  • Medication-Assisted Recovery

Holistic therapies also available at Sana Lake Recovery include:

  • Yoga
  • Meditation
  • Mindfulness
  • Journaling
  • Nutritional Therapy

Dual Diagnosis and Alcohol Use Disorder

Over 9 million American adults with AUD also struggle with other mental health illnesses. These illnesses include depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder. If you struggle with AUD and any mental illness (AMI), it’s vital to seek comprehensive co-occurring disorder treatment. 

Common mental illness co-occurring with alcohol use disorder include:

Long-Term Recovery from Alcohol Use Disorder

The decision to seek treatment is only the first step in recovery. Alcohol use disorder is a disease. And like other diseases, it requires lifelong treatment. Chronic treatment will vary for each person. However, 12-step meetings like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) help maintain recovery and prevent recurrence of use. 

Before completing treatment, you and your therapist will develop a plan to prevent the recurrence of use. This plan will cover possible triggers and dealing with the urges to drink. If you are struggling with any of the following, it’s crucial to reach out to your therapist or sponsor. 

  • Having withdrawal symptoms that won’t stop
  • Being surrounded by enablers
  • Being in a bad relationship
  • Feeling lonely
  • Feeling depressed
  • Events that make you want to use

Help for Alcohol Use Disorder at Sana Lake Recovery

If you or a loved one is struggling with substance use disorder, it can feel lonely. However, our team of certified professionals will support you on your journey to recovery at Sana Lake. Our traditional and holistic therapy programs offer the best chance of maintaining a life of recovery. Contact us today and find out how.