Is Addiction To Alcohol A Behavioral Or Chemical Dependency?

505307687Many people try to understand whether alcohol addiction is a behavioral or chemical reaction. In reality, it’s a gradual journey from one phase to the other; as control over the condition slowly slips out of reach. Here is an accurate account on how this shift happens and when to notice the red flags.

It begins with that first drink in high school or with friends at that favorite hiding spot, in middle school. As one grows older, they slowly become accustomed drinkers through parties, weddings, social gatherings and so on. At this point, the condition can be deemed as behavioral dependency.

At the Behavioral stage, one has control on their drinking patterns. It’s the stage most drinkers are in; a single beer each evening after work with the boys never hurt anyone. One can decide to cut down on the drinking frequency or quit drinking all together—it is quite easy at this point. But then the frequency increases, it goes unnoticed, a few family members may raise eyebrows, you ignore them then the circuit trip happens.

The chemical dependency stage is when control is given over to the bottle itself. One is no longer in control as a chemical imbalance in the brain keeps triggering the urge to drink. The one bottle a day routine changes, as the urge to drink now comes in the morning, noon time as well as in the evening. Free times are an avenue to drink and every problem one faces in life can only be numbed by the drink.

Pressure builds up, your mortgage is due and the kids need money for tuition, your grandma called in sick—every life problem coming your way can only be solved by the bottle. You start being secretive, hiding the receipts from the liquor store, and your normal water bottle converts into a secret whisky flask. At this point everyone notices you have a problem, they raise concern and it’s only them who can help you recover from the now evident addiction.

That’s the big different between the two; there is some control over the drinking during the behavioral stage but thinks topple when the chemical stage is obliviously reached.


Even More Dangers Of Synthetic Marijuana


There is one thing that has been proven true over the ages, people want to get high. Just think about it. How many alcoholic drinks have been invented over the centuries? You can increase taxes and prohibit alcohol production but people will make bootleg and other types of substitutes because they just have to get high. The same applies to marijuana. While the substance may have been legalized in some states, there are strict rules to regulate its production, distribution and sale, making accessibility somewhat difficult. The cost of marijuana from the cannabis plant is also beyond the reach of some users. These are some of the things that have led to increased production of synthetic marijuana.

Synthetic Marijuana Production

As the name suggests, the ingredients used to make synthetic marijuana are made in chemistry labs by mixing nearly a hundred chemicals. The mixture is not used directly. Instead, it is sprayed onto a plant base, such as oregano. The plant is first dried and shredded before the chemical mixture is sprayed on them. The end product is dried and packaged as synthetic marijuana. Depending on location, the substance may go by the street name K2, Spice or Green Plant. It normally costs around $5, but may be a little bit cheaper or expensive depending on the manufacturer.

Synthetic marijuana is popular because it gives a hundred times the high of marijuana. It is also much cheaper than natural marijuana. The substance is easily accessible, hence its popularity. Unfortunately, that is just one side of the story.

The Dangers of Synthetic Marijuana

While the drug may offer an intense high, it often leads to an acute state of confusion, which may not go away. This means that its effects can be experienced years after use. Medical practitioners have also noticed some serious symptoms, including; chest pain, seizures, vomiting, tremor, high blood pressure, paranoia and hallucinations. Hundreds of people have been hospitalized after using synthetic marijuana, which shows just how dangerous the synthetic drug is. Authorities are doing their best to control importation of ingredients, manufacture and distribution of synthetic marijuana.

People who buy synthetic marijuana only want to get high and they often assume the substance is similar to herbal marijuana. If they knew the harmful side effects of synthetic marijuana, they would stay away from it, hopefully.

The Facts About OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) And Substance Abuse


OCD is one of the most widely known disorders yet it is also among the least understood. There are a lot of myths floating around about it and lots of people don’t take it as seriously as they should. The following is a recital of the facts about OCD:

What It Is

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder or OCD is a behavioral anomaly in which a person is driven to repeat thoughts and rituals to the point of distress. It’s true that everyone will have the impulse to check on things from time to time but those with OCD have a different level of compulsion. They have an overwhelming urge to do things over and over again even if they do not like it. Their actions might already be interfering with their daily life but they are almost powerless to stop themselves from doing them again.

Who Is At Risk

It is not yet known what specifically causes this condition. However, studies indicate that it may be a genetic trait that runs in families. More research is needed to confirm this. The impact of the environment is also being studied. The general trend is for the obsessive behaviors to appear early in life. Indeed, most people with OCD are diagnosed before they even reach their 20s. The symptoms could be worse at times, fade away for a while, and come back again. Right now, it is estimated that more than 2 million adult Americans are dealing with this disorder.

What the Treatments Are

Patients can avail of psychotherapy in order to tame their compulsions. Cognitive Behavior Therapy is frequently used because of its effectiveness in neutralizing negative behaviors. In this approach, people are taught to think, behave and react in a more constructive manner when faced with known triggers. The reduction in anxiety allows them to become more functional individuals. Psychotherapy may be augmented by medication. Anti-depressants and anti-anxiety drugs could provide the physical boost necessary for patients to feel better. However, they should be careful about OCD and substance abuse. Follow the doctor’s instructions so as not to become heavily dependent on these drugs.

Follow us for more information and resources on drug abuse and treatment.

Anxiety And Withdrawal When You Stop Smoking Weed


Hard drugs like marijuana are habit-forming. The body begins to crave it after repeated use such that it becomes an addiction. People who try quitting smoking weed often find themselves saddled with withdrawal symptoms. These can be bad enough to affect daily life. It is tempting to get back into the habit but more knowledge about the situation combined with patience can help in getting through the hump.

Heavy users tend to experience worse withdrawals than casual users. However, it must be noted that marijuana is just as addictive as other drugs. There is a prevailing notion it is easy to quit but studies have shown that this is simply not true. The symptoms may not be life-threatening but they are just as disruptive. Among the behaviors to watch out for are:

Loss of Appetite

There is not much enthusiasm for food as the body is craving something else entirely. This could lead to an unhealthy drop in weight. Be sure to try eating a good amount of nutritious food to get the energy required for work and other responsibilities.

Sleep Disorder

Individuals looking to quit can become irritable and sensitive to stimuli. They may have trouble falling asleep at night. This can affect their energy level, productivity, and attention span at work. They need to rest and sleep every chance they get to recharge.

Body Aches

Some have reported feeling random body aches and pains. These should go away with time as long as the person takes good care of his or her health. Expect symptoms to subside after about a week or two, though the craving for the drug may persist long after.


Marijuana can affect the brain. Those who cut themselves off from the drug may exhibit nervousness and anxiety. Their body is still trying to cope with the sudden lack of dosage that it has come to expect. Going to a rehabilitation center can help immensely in dealing with these symptoms. Structured treatments allow people to recover step-by-step until they are able to stand on their own.

Follow us for more information and resources on drug abuse and treatment.

Talking About Hangovers And Their Effects

496590873The topic of hangovers, how long they last, and their effects is one that can be somewhat frightening, and one that must be taken very seriously. In the past, in movies and in conversations taking place between old friends after celebrating some event, many jokes have been exchanged and many laughs shared about the “big head” that was earned by extensive efforts. A joke is a joke, but the truth is that hangovers are truly not one at all. Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why.

Hangovers carry with them very unpleasant physiological and psychological effects which include a wide variety of different unpleasant feelings. Prominent among these are severe headaches, drowsiness, serious concentration issues and problems, dry mouth, dizziness, fatigue, absence of hunger, sweating, nausea, hyper excitability, bad anxiety, and gastrointestinal distress. All of these are truly awful and difficult problems for one to be dealing with, and typically the hangover is going to last 24 hours or perhaps even a bit longer. Whatever fun one started out to have as they began their journey down this road, was canceled out when they went over the limit!

Still another extremely serious consequence that the hangover brings with it is the state of depression. They find themselves in that state of low mood and aversion to activities that affects their thoughts, behavior, feelings, and their sense of well-being. They find themselves losing any interest in those activities they once so much enjoyed. Very often they are overcome by feelings of restlessness, irritability, hopelessness, worthlessness, guilt, emptiness, emptiness and anxiety. Any and all of these things are not a place where one wants to find themselves. There are no positives to be found here, and continuation of the course that leads one to this place is something that one must confront and start to deal with.

The bottom line is basically this. The person who finds themselves facing the problem of hangovers more and more, has issues that they are going to have to confront and deal with going forward. If they are able to do this on their own, great!
But if they cannot, they must get themselves the help and assistance they need to get the job done.

What Are The Penalties Of Driving With Ability Impaired (DWAI) In Colorado?


In the state of Colorado, a person who has ingested substances that adversely affects ability to drive may be charged in court. The exact offense will depend on the gravity of the situation as seen from the evidence. The biggest factor is the blood alcohol level as measured using a blood test or a breath test. Law enforcers typically use the latter on the ground but people can get a more accurate blood test to refute the unflattering results of a breath test. BAC readings between 0.05 and 0.08 are enough to merit the initiation of DWAI charges. Higher readings can result in DUI charges.

Colorado DWAI Penalties

If a person is found guilty of Driving with Ability Impaired, then he or she will have to face the consequences as prescribed by law. First offenders are treated with as much leniency as possible while ensuring that they learn from their mistakes. They may be asked to pay a fine no greater than $500 and render useful services to the community for up to 48 hours in total. Imprisonment is possible with the shortest stay being 48 hours and the longest being 180 days. At this point, the license will not be suspended and jail time may be evaded through enrollment in an alcohol treatment program.

If the person is a repeat offender, then the courts will not be as kind given the perceived inability to stick to the rules and learn from mistakes. Every penalty will be amplified to a level that is on par with a DUI conviction. Fines can reach up to $1,500 and community service can take as much as 96 hours. The prison sentence could be as long as one year just because of the bad decision to drive after drinking. The judge may even ask for an ignition interlock device to be installed at the offender’s own expense.

Convictions that were handed down in other states count when looking at repeat offenses. A BAC reading that is 0.20 or higher can also result in more serious penalties. Be sure to consult a lawyer if you are facing DWAI charges in order to build a strong defense.

Contact Musell Law for The Top DUI Lawyers In Denver:

dui lawyer denver

Getting Help For An Alcoholic


Helping an alcoholic is not always easy, especially if it is a family member or a loved one. The first step, before even deciding on what help you can offer an alcoholic, is to acknowledge the problem; only then is there any realistic hope of getting help for an alcoholic.

Once an alcoholic has acknowledged that they have a problem and would like to seek help, the next step is to determine exactly what sort of help would be best. In some cases, your support and understanding is worth more to the person than any amount of counseling or rehab. Rehab isn’t necessarily the best solution for everyone; a person has to want to undergo the treatment, and it depends on the severity of the alcoholism. It’s also important to understand that it is impossible to make an alcoholic stop drinking unless you lock them in an empty room; ultimately they need to make that decision themselves, although you can certainly help.

A large part of getting help for an alcoholic is acknowledging what you are able to do to help, and realizing what is beyond your control. If your spouse drinks because there is beer in the fridge, don’t buy it. If they stop at the bar for a drink on the way home from work, pick them up so the temptation is removed. There may be external factors making someone drink more than they should, such as getting over a divorce, stress at work, the loss of a job or a loved one. Avoid any situations which make an alcoholic want to drink, if at all possible. Understanding and identifying these can go some way towards getting help for a an alcoholic.

If someone you know has a drinking problem, remember that you can’t make them address their problem. After all, some alcoholics are perfectly content with being an alcoholic and don’t want to change. You can only point out to them how it makes you feel, and how it is destroying your relationship and tearing you apart, and can offer to help. The rest is up to them.