Opiate Addiction

Commonly Abused Opiates

Opiates are often prescribed to treat moderate to severe pain and include drugs such as Hydrocodone, Morphine, Fentanyl. An illegal substance, Heroin, is also included in this class. Becoming addicted to such drugs may start from a simple dentist visit, a sprained ankle, or minor surgery. Because of the intense high produced by the interaction of several opiates and the brain, the drugs remain extremely addictive, sometimes causing symptoms of addiction in under three days. Opiate addiction can affect your job performance, relationships, and have legal consequences.

Short-term effects can include:

  • Feelings of euphoria.
  • Pain relief.
  • Drowsiness.
  • Sedation.

Long-term effects can include:

  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • Abdominal distention and bloating.
  • Skin abscess
  • Constipation.
  • Liver damage
  • Brain damage due to hypoxia, resulting from respiratory depression.
  • Tolerance.
  • Dependence.

The best-known side effect of opiates is addiction, and it’s surprisingly easy to become addicted without realizing it. Even codeine, a commonly prescribed painkiller, is addictive. Treatment options are available. A Pathway to Life Counseling offers outpatient and teletherapy for opiate addiction. Call 504-410-7008 to discuss your treatment options today!

When Should I See an Addiction Counselor?

I’ve Hit Rock Bottom

Often people think it’s time to see a counselor once they have hit the proverbial “rock bottom”. They’ve spent the rent money and have no food in the house. Their family is done with them and they’ve pawned everything of value. However, there’s no reason to wait until things feel hopeless. Therefore, addiction counselors can help support you throughout the treatment process and create an individualized plan for recovery and after-care. There are various types of therapy available while in treatment that will provide an array of benefits and allow you to sustain your sobriety while in recovery (Addiction Center, 2019).

Mandated or “Forced”

Court or Department of Children Family Services mandate also brings many people before a counselor. In order to fulfill the requirements of a DWI or domestic violence charge, and individual may be mandated to a certain number of therapy sessions. This can also occur after a positive drug test for employment or custody arrangement. Although these sessions are involuntary, make the most of them. Learn as much as can. A good Licensed Addiction Counselor will develop a specialized care plan based on your needs and goals. You may be surprised how much you grow from mandated treatment. Also, take advantage of the opportunity to create an aftercare or relapse prevention plan. This can include anger management, trauma therapy, and continued addiction treatment.

You should see a Licensed Addiction Counselor when substance abuse is becoming a problem for YOU! Don’t wait until substance use is out of control or ruining your life. Anyone suffering from a drug or alcohol addiction knows how powerful and crippling this disease can be. Signs may include:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Financial issues
  • Family problems
  • Physical problems
  • Disciplinary Actions at Work/School
  • Legal Problems

Call Today

If you or someone you know needs help from a Licensed Addiction Counselor, call A Pathway to Life Counseling Services at 504-410-7008. We offer outpatient services as well as teletherapy.

Teletherapy: Is It Right For Me?

Technology has become part of our everyday lives. Cell phones, tablets, and laptops are no longer a rarity. Kids often receive a new phone by their eighth birthday. Technology is here to stay whether we love or hate it. Therefore, teletherapy is important to explore. Teletherapy is receiving therapeutic services via safe and HIPPAA compliant live video connection. You maybe wondering, what are the benefits of teletherapy. Let’s explore

Teletherapy Benefits

Convenience: Teletherapy allows for interaction over your laptop or cell phone. This reduces wait time and travel. No more getting lost on the way to a session. As long as you can find your device, you’ve found your destination!

Increased access: Disabled populations have more difficulty maintaining traditional therapy. Teletherapy allows access to a train and licensed therapist without the difficulty of office travel. “There are times when clients suffering from IBS, Crohn’s or other diseases may experience shame or embarrassment at their need for leaving to use facilities.  In an online context, some of these concerns can be diminished significantly” (Psychology Today). Even temporary illness such as the flu, sprained ankle, or recent surgery may cause a break in therapy. An online option reduces breaks in treatment

Teens & College Students: Statistics show that individuals between the age of 13-26 communicate predominantly by texting and video chat. As a result, traditional office-based therapy may not be the best fit. Video therapy may be a more comfortable and convenient way of communicating.

Privacy: Clients often don’t seek therapy because of privacy reasons. Sitting in a waiting room and seeing your neighbor may not be your idea of a great session. This is especially true for those seeking addiction treatment. Therefore, Teletherapy eliminates this potential anxiety and awkwardness.

Remote Access: Let’s be honest. Not everyone lives in a major city with access to a therapist. Unfortunately, some have to travel very far to see a therapist they connect with. Teletherapy allows increased access to a pool of trained and qualifed therapist.

Teletherapy may be right for you. A Pathway to Life Counseling offers traditional as well as teletherapy options. Call 504-410-7008 to discuss your teletherapy needs.

Compulsive Gambling; Betting on Addiction

Going to your local casino. Buying a few scratch-offs. Even playing the lottery in hopes of become filthy rich can lead to addiction. Gambling can go from fun to problematic very quickly. Therefore, individuals and families may suffer financially, emotionally, and even physically. According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (5th ed.)

A diagnosis of gambling disorder requires at least four of the following during the past year:

  1. Need to gamble with increasing amount of money to achieve the desired excitement
  2. Restless or irritable when trying to cut down or stop gambling
  3. Repeated unsuccessful efforts to control, cut back on or stop gambling
  4. Frequent thoughts about gambling (such as reliving past gambling experiences, planning the next gambling venture, thinking of ways to get money to gamble)
  5. Often gambling when feeling distressed
  6. After losing money gambling, often returning to get even (referred to as “chasing” one’s losses)
  7. Lying to conceal gambling activity
  8. Jeopardizing or losing a significant relationship, job or educational/career opportunity because of gambling
  9. Relying on others to help with money problems caused by gambling

People who have a gambling disorder often hide their behaviors. Indications can be financial distress and missing money. Also, individuals may begin to abuse substances such as cocaine or alcohol. Gambling addiction can often be treated on an outpatient basis. Call A Pathway to Life Counseling Services for treatment options.

Do You Know The Signs of Teen Drug Abuse?

Your son has been acting “a little off.” He’s quite the football team. Maybe your daughter has been more moody than normal. She’s always locked in her room. Of course it must be the hormones, right? Unfortunately, parents, teachers, and trusted adults often miss the signs of teen drug abuse. Depending on the drug, signs may include;

    • Frequent mood swings
    • Isolation
    • Change in school performance or skipping school
    • Dropping out of extracurricular activities
    • Illegal behaviors
    • Depression
    • Slurred speech
    • Unexplained increase or decrease in finances
    • Burns on finger tips or lips

However, communication is key! Talk to your child early and often about drugs and alcohol. If you suspect use, reach out for help. Let them know they are not alone. Teens are often open to treatment when supported.


Prescription Opiates and America’s Crisis


Is Kratom Addictive?

Kratom has become popular in the last few years. The drug has been around for a long time. However, the opiate-like feeling produced by Kratom has increased interest in the drug. Addiction to Kratom is real. Many people become physically dependent and experience serious withdrawals. If you are experiencing addiction to Kratom, reach out for help! Call A Pathway to Life Counseling to discuss treatment options today!

Prescription Opiates and America’s Crisis

Prescription opiates have played a major role in America’s drug epidemic. Did you know that more than 130 people in the United States die after overdosing on opioids? However, help is available. Outpatient treatment can be successful. Call 504-410-7008 to make an appointment today!