The County of San Diego recently published stark numbers about addiction overdoses. Overdose deaths during the pandemic are a parallel public health crisis. Deaths have increased at least 50% since the same time last year. Three people overdose and die daily, mostly from opioids.

The indirect causes of overdose deaths vary. Some people are newly addicted, some have relapsed, and others may have increased their drug use or are struggling to maintain it. Drug supplies have been spotty on the streets of San Diego for illicit drug users, causing them to turn to other sources. Fentanyl is often found in drug supplies that are sold as heroin or Oxycontin.

Pandemic and Relapse

San Diego isn't the only place where people are struggling. The pandemic has, in part, ushered in a new addiction epidemic. Like many people, some individuals in recovery have struggled with isolation, and anecdotally there is a decent percentage of people who have relapsed since the beginning of the COVID-19 lockdowns.

Drugs are not flowing on the streets the way they used to due to border shutdowns and fewer flights. Thus, pills are often cut with fentanyl, which is very potent and can be fatal to inexperienced people using it.

Addiction, also called substance use disorder, is found among people from all backgrounds. Addiction is a disease and has its progression. The good news is that help is available.

Detox and treatment can help you overcome addiction and reclaim your life.

Preventing Overdose

If you or your loved one has relapsed, getting clean and sober may not happen overnight.

Keep a supply of Naloxone, an overdose reversal drug, with you if you or somebody you love uses opioids. In San Diego, a primary care physician or other healthcare can prescribe it for you. Check-in with your loved ones or commit to having them check in with you once or more times a day. Let them know that you'll have to call them an ambulance if they don't get in touch.

If you suspect your loved one has overdosed and you can't get in touch with them, it's okay to call 911 and let them know you suspect an overdose.

If a loved one turns blue, is unconscious, or has shallow breathing, don't hesitate to summon emergency help—call 911.

Getting Help

The best way to prevent an overdose is to get clean and sober through a reputable program. We can help you start your journey through recovery and begin to reclaim your life. Our caring intake coordinators are standing by to answer any questions you may have about detox and treatment. Call us today at (619) 363-4767.

 

Our Medical Director Dr. Milgram has this message we wanted to share here. He is in recovery himself for decades and is known as an inspirational figure in the San Diego recovery community:

Worry, fear, boredom, anxiety, loneliness, escapism, insomnia; these are the emotions that plague our society.   The plague that is COVID is making these human imperfections more frequent and more pronounced.

There are healthy effective ways we can not only deal with these feelings and situations. But it is human tendency to take an immediate and effective way to escape: The Devil’s Drugs. They are too readily available. There is easy access to someone who can promise you the gates of heaven. You are invincible. And you want it now. From a friend or family member who has some. Or from a prescriber who will prescribe, sometimes inadvertently but often as a legitimate dealer. Hey, maybe it‘s even covered by your insurance. Maybe you know somebody who knows someone who can get it for you in a park or a parking lot. Trust me. You are not invincible. These are not your grandparent’s drugs. These synthetic drugs have a high addiction potential. I don’t think they should have ever been released to the public, like Quaaludes. You give these drugs to a thousand white mice…and a thousand whit mice will be pushing that button for more. Physiologically, we are not dissimilar from a white mouse. They use these same white mice to test the drugs and extrapolate to human consumption. WE WANT MORE OF THAT!!

These drugs cause what is known as hyperalgesia. Let’s say you stroke the hairs on your arm with a feather. These drugs make a stimulus that would be a tickle or an unpleasurable event and convert it to pain. What do you do? I WANT MORE OF THAT!! 

Then you develop tolerance to the drug. Until you rapidly, sometimes within days, need more to get you to that place where you want to be. And you then know. I NEED MORE OF THAT!!  

NAD+ Helps with Detox and Recovery

We have been very successful treating alcoholism and drug addiction to heroin, opiates with our innovative and experienced team and the magical molecule of NAD+ (Nicotinamide Adenine Dinucleotide), which detoxifies and fixes your brain, relieving withdrawal symptoms and cravings with much greater regularity than your neighborhood rehab center. But these are The Devil’s Drugs. And they require an all out and effective therapeutic approach to avoid the gates of hell; loss of you job, your family, your money, your home. And finally you lose yourself and then you lose hope. Benzodiazepines (Xanax, Klonipen, Ativan, Ambien and the sort) are not a good solution. You solve a problem by creating another problem. But prescribers too readily whip out their prescription pads to give you a stopgap that may be as bad or worse than the original problem. Please don’t take Kratom either. Often the addiction to Kratom is worse than heroin. Unfortunately, it is readily available and touted as “natural”. When you are addicted to Kratom, you may be suffering such terrible withdrawals that you have to use through the night every two hours.

The best way to avoid this whole situation is to not allow these drugs into your body. Avoid them all-knowingly because I have here told you of their power, their danger, and the high percentage for your physiologic tendency as a normal human being to succumb to the power of these drugs. But it is human tendency to think you are different, stronger, better, even invincible. I WANT TO FEEL IT, NOW!!

We have an alternative therapy here in Carlsbad, with the magic molecule (NAD+) that is already present in every living animal and plant cell. And that the body naturally uses to detoxify, heal, pump up immunity, and create new neural pathways that results in less cravings, less withdrawal symptoms and a high degree of long-lasting sobriety, health, longevity and wellness. We help restore restful sleep, use additional therapies, and get you on the road to a new life free from the influence of these drugs.

NAD+ is the magic. There is an art to the administration of it—starting with the best NAD+. Then there are therapies that enhance and propagate the NAD+ effect. Then, once off the drugs, you need to deal with the emotional, physical, depression, anxiety, any underlying mental disease, situation, and establish an ongoing program of healthy nurturing lifestyle.

There is such a thing as recovery, let us show you.

I am The NAD MD,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Many people in recovery have a DUI in their story, especially people who live with alcohol addiction also called alcohol use disorder. Sometimes people have more severe DUI charges, especially if the charge is not a person’s first. Aggravated DUI is a felony, which can cost a lot of money and time, especially if you are sentenced to jail.

Many people with an addiction to alcohol or other substances find themselves arrested for a Driving Under the Influence charge. A DUI, especially a second or aggravated one, can be incredibly costly and cause you to lose your driver’s license and freedom.

Nobody wants to be addicted to alcohol. It is not necessary to hit a terrible bottom before you get help. Recovery is possible no matter who you are or what you have done in the past.

What is Considered an Aggravated DUI?

There is more than one reason to be charged with Aggravated DUI. You may be surprised at the kinds of things that can cause you to be accused of this crime, which is a felony and much more serious than your first DUI.

Here are a few reasons you might be charged for Aggravated DUI in California:

Consequences for Aggravated DUI in California

California DUI fines can cost you anywhere from around $400 to $5000, depending on your conviction. Costs of the DUI can range depending on the circumstance when you were arrested.

Aggravated DUI is a felony, and if you are charged with it, you will be facing jail time. Jail time comes at a high cost because you will have to leave your family behind and lose your income.

Fighting an Aggravated DUI is typically expensive. It’s a felony that is automatically triggered by certain conditions, so it is hard to plead it down with a lawyer. You’re looking at thousands of dollars in fines.

Overall, the time you spend in jail and the cost of the fine depend on the judge. Aggravating factors often add specific amounts of time when you’re convicted, so you may have to spend months longer in jail.

Getting an Aggravated DUI is life-changing. It’s not worth the money or the loss of freedom. Getting help for your alcohol use disorder is possible and can help you avoid future jail time and legal problems from your alcohol or drug use.

Getting Help for Addiction

If you or somebody you love has a problem with alcohol or drugs, help is available! You don’t have to continue to make poor choices based on addiction. You can find freedom and start a new journey toward recovery. Get in touch with us at our state-of-the-art facility to learn more about how we can help. It’s confidential, and we’re here to help at 619-363-4767.

The pandemic has made life difficult for millions of Americans. Economic depression, lost jobs, and despair alongside the pandemic's isolation have caused more drug use than ever. Sadly, across the United States, fentanyl is causing overdoses at record levels. In San Diego County alone, there are currently three deadly overdoses a day. The opioid crisis hasn't been this bad for four years, and experts worry that addiction is snowballing quietly.

Fentanyl Contaminates Supply Chains

Researchers have sounded an alarm for the past few years about the rise in overdose deaths involving fentanyl. The majority of overdoses now involve the drug, which is 50-100 times as powerful as Morphine. Overdoses that involve fentanyl are usually deadlier because of the potency of the drug.

For people who have an opioid use disorder, there are many risks to take when buying drugs. Regular drug supply chains are strained, and China has outlawed the manufacture of oxycodone (aka Oxycontin) and fentanyl. Because of this, chemists that rely on illicit drug sales have been offering fentanyl either as an adulterant or alternative to other opioids. Chinese drugmakers funnel fentanyl through the Mexico border, and from there, it makes its way into heroin, Oxy, and other street (and internet) drug dealers.

Addiction More Prevalent, Support is Key

Coroners believe that most of the overdoses that they are seeing are accidental. People who have relapsed from recovery are already more likely to use more of a drug than their body can handle. Now, they can fall victim to isolation and a relapse cycle. Some people end up self-medicating their mental health disorders too.

Harm reduction advocates recommend that family members of people with an opioid use disorder or other addiction know the signs of an overdose. Keep Narcan (an opioid overdose reversal drug) in the house. There are even test strips that can help drug users test their supply for fentanyl. Ask to speak to family members you love via video and set up times to check-in.

There IS help available for people who need it. Offer support and love and even help find resources, such as a therapist or inpatient program for substance use disorders.

Getting Help During a Pandemic

Getting help for addiction during a pandemic starts with the same step as always – reaching out! We're here to help you create a new journey and plan your next steps. You're powerless over your addiction, but you can help yourself start a path to recovery.

Give us a call at 619-363-4767 to learn more about your options.

Have you or a loved one been charged with one or more Driving Under the Influence (DUI) charges? Trouble with the law is a common theme for people with an alcohol use disorder. When alcohol starts to affect your life negatively, it’s time to look at your relationship with alcohol.

A DUI is just one effect that can come from excessive alcohol use. If you have gotten a DUI, you’ve probably had other problems in your life that could be attributed to your drinking.

How Much Drinking is Too Much?

According to Harvard Health, excessive drinking can be defined as two or more alcoholic beverages a day. Most people who drink alcohol don’t follow these guidelines, however if you drink to the point you are drunk, you are drinking excessively. It is more socially acceptable to drink to excess than to participate in other drug use. (Although marijuana is increasingly a substance of abuse in states where it is legal.) Because of this, many people don’t realize that their alcoholism is a problem.

Alcohol use affects your judgment. If you regularly drink to excess, you may stop realizing that your decision-making is impaired. You may decide it’s safe to drink and drive or act in a manner that’s not normal for you. Maybe alcohol makes you act promiscuous or wild. Perhaps you get in heated arguments that lead to fights. Some people are also more likely to try risky drugs when they have already been drinking. None of these things are healthy or safe drinking behavior.

If alcohol is negatively affecting your life, you may have an alcohol use disorder.

What is a DUI?

DUI, also known as Driving Under the Influence, is a law that keeps impaired drivers off the road. Drunk drivers have slower reaction times, poor decision-making skills, and drive haphazardly without even realizing it. California’s DUI law means that you can’t drive “buzzed” or drunk and states that a definition of impaired driving is a  Blood Alcohol Limit of .08 or lower. The police may ask you to step out of the car to do a series of physical tests to prove you have proper coordination.

If you fail a sobriety test, you can be prosecuted for a DUI. This is also true if you fail the physical tests and don’t register as drunk on the BAC test. California is one of the strictest states in the union when it comes to DUI laws.

The law gets stricter if you are highly intoxicated. If you test for twice the legal alcohol limit (.16), then there are more penalties, and you may be charged with Aggravated DUI. Additional criminal charges are possible, for example, if there was a minor in the car or if your DUI is a second or third offense.

The Negative Effects of Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD)

If you drink too much, too often, and continue to do so despite the negative consequences of any kind, you might have an Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD) or be addicted to alcohol. DUI is just one symptom of an alcohol problem.

For many people, AUD means that they have trouble with their sleep, relationships, or financials due to their alcohol use. For example, you may end up late to work frequently because you are hungover. Or your significant other is upset that you won’t quit drinking.

Alcohol can cause problems in your thinking, and you may make bad decisions due to your relationship with alcohol. Getting arrested for DUI, drunk and disorderly charges, domestic violence, or fights with others are all legal consequences common among people who binge drink or are addicted to alcohol.

Health problems caused by excess alcohol consumption can range from getting bruises and injuries when you drink to overdose on alcohol, leading to coma, seizures, and death.

Alcohol addiction or dependence can lead to severe withdrawal effects and a change in your thinking due to addiction's chemical aspects. If you have a physical alcohol addiction, the safest way to get sober is through a clinically managed detox.

Getting Help for Drinking

The best way to prevent a DUI or other criminal charges related to drinking or drug use is to get sober for good. There is a lot of support available for you! Many people have been where you have been.

Present Moments Recovery can give you a DUI Assessment and maybe even a new start by helping you stop drinking for good. We will help you chart a path to recovery. Give us a call at 619-363-4767 to learn more about how we can help.

 

 

 

Have you or somebody you love started to drink too much during the pandemic? You’re not alone. Almost every adult generation has seen an increase in substance since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. And for many people, that means drinking too much has become a coping method. The term “pandemic drinking” has become a casual euphemism for this dangerous behavior.

Fathers, mothers, sons, and daughters are all living in a new world. The COVID-19 pandemic has affected people and families from every walk of life. Even when we have a reliable vaccine or treatment, we will probably still be coping with the aftereffects. Hopefully, people who have a problem with pandemic drinking can get the help they need.

Why Are People Pandemic Drinking?

The era of COVID-19 is a lonely time for many people, primarily because, as humans, our mental health relies on being social. It can be hard to connect or reach out to others when you’re home alone and struggling. You may think it’s easier to drink than to talk about your feelings. However, alcohol addiction can take over your life. You may find yourself drinking during the day or having to drink more or harder liquor to get the buzz you crave.

Alcohol is a common “escape” for people who are depressed, anxious, or lonely. Nobody binge-drinks or drinks until they blackout because they’re happy in life.

Many people think that drinking more heavily can help them cope with stress, sleep problems, boredom, and loneliness. But this is simply an escape that can have dire consequences.

Consequences of Regular Alcohol Abuse

People who drink too much right now may have struggled with their alcohol use in the past. You may have consumed a lot of beer in college or when you were going through a difficult time. No matter what the reason is that you’re drinking it, alcohol is not a safe coping mechanism. It has long-term health consequences, contributes to many social ills, and can cause intense withdrawal effects.

Some withdrawal effects from heavy alcoholism cause life-threatening consequences, such as hallucinations, heart palpitations, or seizures.

Alcohol abuse doesn’t fix any problems, but it can introduce new ones to your life. You don’t have to hit bottom to get help. Even during a pandemic, there are programs ready and willing to help you reclaim your life.

Getting Help for Alcohol or Substance Abuse

While drinking is seen as a more acceptable addiction, it is still a dangerous addiction that can cause significant problems in your life. It inhibits your ability to make good, rational decisions. Some people get DUI’s or even commit acts of rage or violence when they drink too much.

Abusing alcohol also makes you more likely to overdose on other drugs you use.

Getting Help for Alcohol or Substance Abuse

If you’re drinking too much during the pandemic or need help with substance use, there’s never been a better time to reach out. We’re here for you to help you start a new journey and reclaim your life. We can help you navigate your options and start charting your course to recovery and healing. Give us a call at 619-363-4767 to learn more about how we can help.

 

Many people who become addicted to drugs have co-occurring mental health disorders, such as generalized anxiety disorder. Anxiety is a widespread mental health issue in America, especially during the era of COVID-19. Many people during this crisis are experiencing high levels of stress and anxiety.

Anxiety and Substance Use

Many people who have anxiety abuse drugs or alcohol. After all, one of the first initial reasons people decide to experiment with drugs is “to relax.” Some people with anxiety are also prescribed benzodiazepine drugs to ease their anxiety. Benzos can be highly addictive and cause dangerous withdrawal symptoms even if you’ve been using them as prescribed.

Anxiety can be a fleeting emotion or a mental health disorder, depending on the symptoms you feel. Some people find it to be debilitating. Lots of people use alcohol and drugs to self-medicate anxiety, depression, and other mental health disorders. It’s not healthy, but it’s common.

The good news is that when you get sober, you’ll learn new coping tools for anxiety. You’ll start to gain confidence in life, too! So you may end up feeling a lot less anxious in the long run.

A Few Simple Ways to Cope with Feeling Anxious

Everyone feels nervous or anxious, but this is much more common among the newly sober. When people first get sober, they often feel like many of their emotions are raw and new. After quieting them with substances for some time, it may feel dramatic to reencounter your feelings. Learning to cope with feelings and be prepared for them is one part of recovery you’ll tackle throughout your life.

Here are some suggestions for when you feel anxious:

If you feel like anxiety is controlling your behavior or life, there’s always help available. A mental health professional can screen you for anxiety, give you advice and tools to control it. If medication is necessary, a doctor can safely prescribe it for you.

Getting Help for Addiction

Do you need help with a substance use disorder? We’re here to help you or your loved one recover! Even during COVID-19, we have found ways to make treatment accessible to our clients. Call us at 619-363-4767 to learn more about your options.

Now that you have the time (especially in the age of COVID), you can make sure that you also practice self-care. Self-care can help you cope with stress and negativity, too. Getting and staying sober is an adventure, just like life! Addiction is only a small part of who you are. Exploring your creativity in recovery can help you connect to those other parts of yourself.

It may have been a long time since you were asked to be creative. Creativity is about making things and enjoying yourself. Learning to let go and just be creative is a part of recovery, too. There are a lot of ways you can use art and creativity as a way to explore your emotions and enhance your recovery.

Getting Creative and Letting Go

Many people who enjoy art say that they like to work with music. Music is a great way to set the mood. If you want to try your hand at something creative, we’ll explore some small projects soon. First, find a private spot (unless you want to do your art with others) and make sure you have space to spread out your materials. Is there enough light? If the weather is good, you can even go outside, but weigh down your lightweight materials with a rock.

Art materials are everywhere if you’re ready to think creatively. You can use magazines, paints, newspaper, markers, poster board, cardboard, and even items from nature.

Art Project Ideas to Start With

Art is a form of therapy that you can use for self-care. It can help relax you and help you express emotions that you may have trouble verbalizing. It can also be a tool for venting frustration, anger, or sadness. You can also use art to help inspire yourself. Here are three art projects to try:

Getting Help for Addiction

Do you or somebody you love need help with their alcohol or substance use? Help is available! We are here to help you reclaim your life, even in the era of COVID-19. Some things have changed, but we are still here to help you get clean and sober. Give us a call to learn more about how we can help you at 619-363-4767.

The pandemic has caused a crisis for public health, and not all of the crisis is rising cases of the novel coronavirus. Overdoses and addiction involving opiates are getting worse, not better. During a time of isolation and uncertainty, many people who suffer from opioid use disorder have fallen between the cracks, causing a resurgence of the opiate epidemic. A new report from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) discusses the dangers of opioid and other drug abuse during the pandemic.

Addiction isn't going away, and for addicted people, the tools to get clean and sober are becoming less accessible. There is more than one reason for this happening. Some people who are new to recovery have slipped back into using drugs, while others have found it is impossible to get the help they need right now. Others who weren’t addicted before may have begun to abuse opioids to cope with the difficulties of the situation. Either way, the saddest part of this crisis is that the epidemic is getting worse, and there isn’t necessarily enough help to go around for the most vulnerable people.

Opiates, Relapse And Recovery

Many people who have begun abusing opioids are people who achieved sobriety in the past. The good news is that they know what tools are available to help them get sober. The bad news is that it is humbling and painful for many of them to go through the process again. In some cases, they may have to wait for detox space to become available. They may be able to hide their drug and alcohol use because people don’t see them in person.

Relapse is often a part of the recovery process for people with opioid addiction. A person who is getting high needs to know that they can achieve sobriety again. Relapse isn’t the end. For many people, it can be a way to practice a stronger recovery program and find lasting sobriety.

Many people addicted to drugs have lost access to community programs that have closed and doctors who administer Medication-Assisted Treatment such as methadone. However, telehealth and other therapies have emerged to fill the gap.

There are still tools available for people who need to find their way back just as there are tools for people who want to get sober for the first time.

Drug Use Adds Danger When It Comes to COVID-19

Opioid use disorders are far more dangerous for the active user during this pandemic. Addiction, like coronavirus, doesn’t discriminate against who it infects. People who use opioids have compromised their lungs, which are depressed when a person is using drugs. This is what can cause death during an overdose.  People who use drugs like opiates, methamphetamine, and cocaine also may be more vulnerable to heart damage.

Science shows that people with health issues are more at risk, and that includes people with addiction and opioid use disorder. A person who uses multiple substances, such as marijuana or alcohol, alongside opioids, maybe even more vulnerable. Coronavirus attacks the lungs, which already struggle and receive damage when a person is smoking or using substances to excess. Combined with alcohol or marijuana, the lungs can become infected more easily and the virus can do more extensive damage.

Many people with substance use disorders may not be able to wear a mask or keep it one. They can end up sharing needles, pipes, and other paraphernalia. Addicted persons are more frequently homeless, which can expose them to crowded conditions or outdoors in the elements. It is very difficult for a person who is addicted to socially distance or take good care of their health in these circumstances.

Getting Clean From Opiates During a Pandemic

While the type of help available to people who want to recover isn’t exactly the same, there are still opportunities to get clean and sober once and for all.

Addiction treatment centers are ready and willing to help you begin to get your life back together, one day at a time. You deserve to live a life free from addiction. Give us a call to learn about how we can help you get started on the journey to recovery. You can reach us at 619-363-4767.

There are a lot of things up in the air right now due to the COVID-19 pandemic. For many people, this means putting goals and plans on hold. For people who struggle with addiction, it might feel like time is standing still. Becoming restless and bored is a normal reaction to an abnormal situation. But falling prey to boredom is dangerous for those who live a life of recovery. Patience, it is often said, is a virtue. So how can you learn to practice it in your daily life?

What is Patience?

The Oxford dictionary defines patience as “the capacity to accept or tolerate delay, trouble, or suffering without getting angry or upset.” If this is difficult for you, you’re not alone. Many people have trouble with accepting upsetting events without getting angry or upset.

Of course, there is a difference between being impatient about a line at the DMV and being upset that you have to wait at the emergency room if you’re sick and scared. However, coping with these events both come from practice.

Practicing Patience

Practicing patience is something you can undoubtedly do in life, especially during the time of the COVID-19 pandemic. Right now, there are so many situations that require patience, including the ability to stay home during “lockdowns.”

Patience goes hand-in-hand with acceptance. There are many things in life that you cannot personally control. You may believe you can change things, but the truth is the only things you have power over are your own actions and reactions.

Being patient doesn’t mean that you don’t feel frustrated. It merely means that you can make it through tough times without acting out in anger and frustration. Finding a coping mechanism that helps you will make you not only less upset but also help you feel more in control of yourself and emotions.

From Acceptance to Patience

When you first get clean and sober, you have to accept that you’re addicted and powerless over your addiction. Accepting that you can’t control most things in the world can lead to peace.

Learning to accept things are they are right now may mean that you have to go through the feelings first. You may need to cry and punch a pillow, say the serenity prayer every time you’re upset, or take time out to journal every day. Sharing with others about your feelings will also help you learn to accept what’s going on right now. You’re certainly not alone right now – everyone is going through something.

Try to add some self-care to each day. Self-care methods that help people learn to be more patient are meditation, exercise, and even creative things like painting or drawing. (After all, when you’re being creating, there are several stages you’ll probably go through until you feel the work is done.)

Life isn’t all sunshine and roses, and getting through trying times will help you appreciate the good times even more in sobriety. Don’t lose faith when you feel discouraged! Reach out to your sponsor or a friend.

Getting Help for Addiction

Addiction doesn’t care who you are, where you live, or what things you do or do not have going for you in life. If you’re struggling with alcohol or drug use, we’re here for you. We can help you reclaim your life one day at a time. Get in touch to learn more about our programs by calling 619-363-4767.

 

 

 

 

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