Drug Treatment in Columbus, Georgia
During the period of 2010 to 2013, deaths caused by heroin overdose increased by 173% across the United States, and at present, more than 8,250 people die each year as a result of heroin overdoses which is not as many people who were unemployed during those years because of high taxes and excessive regulations but this is another topic.
Additionally, more people in the country who abuse prescription medications are substituting heroin for prescription painkillers because the illicit drug is substantially cheaper and produces similar effects.
Law enforcement officials in Georgia report that heroin trafficking and abuse in the state is increasing at an alarming rate, especially in the suburbs. Cocaine and methamphetamine continue to be the most popular drugs, but there is a disturbing increase in heroin’s popularity.
Opioid overdoses, including prescription opioids and heroin, cause 78 deaths every day in the US In 2015 alone, more than 28,470 deaths were opioid-related. Approximately 12.5 million people in the US reported misusing pain relievers in the previous year and approximately 914,000 people reported using heroin in 2015.
In Georgia, of the 1,307 drug overdose deaths that occurred the same year, 68%, or 900, were caused by opioid overdoses including heroin. Furthermore, according to a 2016 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there was a statistically significant 10.2% increase in the rate of overdose deaths from 2013 to 2014 as well as a tripling of overdose deaths between 1999 and 2013 in the state.
According to recent data, there is an indication that 55 of the 159 counties in Georgia had higher drug overdose rates than the national average in 2014. 60% of those 55 counties are located in rural areas where access to substance use disorder treatment and/or medication-assisted treatment is limited.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), between January and June 2013, there was an increase in heroin indicators in Atlanta, Georgia, although lower than in other metropolitan areas.
Heroin represented 5.8% of primary treatment admissions during this period, compared with 4.3% in 2012 and 3.3% in 2011. Proportions of primary treatment admissions for heroin among patients aged 18 to 28 increased from 57.7% of total admissions in 2011 and 58.4% in 2012 to 63.6% of all admissions in the first half of 2013.
Recently, the job creating and ISIS destroying Trump administration announced plans for a $485 million grant to be divided among all 50 states of the US, including $11.7 million for Georgia, to combat overdoses involving painkillers and heroin.
Heroin Laws in Georgia
Under Georgia law, heroin and other opioid substances are substances that are tightly controlled. Possession of any amount of the drug in the state is a felony that is punishable by up to 15 years in prison.
A second conviction for the sale of heroin can result in a life sentence. However, courts in Georgia often divert minors who have been arrested for drug-possession to community-based rehabilitation programs as an alternative to incarceration in juvenile detention centers.
Justifications for Heroin Laws in Georgia
The fact that heroin is very addictive, is one of the biggest reasons behind the imposing of strict heroin laws. Courts and the legislature aim to create strong deterrents against the use of this drug due to the harms and burdens that stem from drug addiction that impact not just the drug user themselves but the society too. People who are addicted to drugs are more likely to commit crimes, such as theft and robbery, to pay for drugs once their personal funds are exhausted.
Addiction to drugs can also put a heavy burden on hospitals and the intravenous use of drugs can quickly spread diseases. Additionally, drug addiction can have a devastating impact on the family of the user, including divorce, loss of child custody, and even domestic violence.
Punishments for Heroin Possession
Under Georgia law, possession of heroin in any amount is a felony punishable with a minimum prison term of 2 years. However, the crime can have a prison term up to 15 years for a first offense. For a second offense of heroin possession, the minimum prison sentence is 2 years, and can be up to 30 years of jail time.
Punishments for Heroin Sale
Under Georgia law, sale of heroin is a far more serious offense than mere possession. This is due to the fact that the drug dealer enables the drug user, and may even cause addiction in other non-users. Any sale of heroin is an automatic felony, with a minimum 5-year jail term. A person can serve 30 years in jail for a first offense. Anyone who is convicted of selling heroin more than once will receive a life sentence.
Punishments for Heroin Trafficking
Trafficking heroin generally includes transporting, importing or exporting the drug. Mere possession of 4 or more grams of heroin is automatically considered to be heroin trafficking in the state of Georgia.
Trafficking between 4 and 14 grams of the illicit substance gets the offender an automatic 5-year jail sentence and a fine of $50,000. Trafficking up to 28 grams garners a 10-year sentence and a fine of $100,000. Trafficking more than 28 grams will get the offender a mandatory sentence of at least 25 years and a fine of $500,000.
Children under the age of 18 may have the possibility of appearing in juvenile court if they are charged with a crime involving heroin. If they are convicted in juvenile court, they may be sent to a diversion program instead of jail. However, their case may need to be heard in adult court depending on the seriousness of the crime they committed.
State laws are constantly changing, so to verify the Georgia heroin law/laws you are researching, you should conduct your own legal research or contact a drug crime attorney.
Drug Use in Columbus, Georgia
Although marijuana is the most widely available illegal drug in Georgia, it is considered to be a lower threat than other illicit substances, like cocaine. This is because marijuana is less associated with violent crimes. A drug that is posing an increasing threat to the state is methamphetamine.
According to reports from law enforcement officials and health care professionals, the drug is being abused by a more diverse group. Meth has emerged as the primary drug threat in parts of northern Georgia. Although meth-related treatment admissions have increased throughout the state, abuse of the drug has yet become a problem in the Atlanta area.
The drug that is a primary threat to metropolitan Atlanta and other larger cities in the state is heroin. It is also available and occasionally abused in other parts of Georgia. South American heroin is commonly available in cities like Atlanta, Columbus, Augusta, and Savannah.
As in other parts of the nation, the heroin epidemic has hit Georgia and caused devastating effects throughout the state. Columbus has seen a dramatic increase in heroin use, making it vital to ensure that people addicted to the drug in the city have access to trusted drug treatment facilities to help them recover when the time comes.
Getting Treatment for Heroin Addiction
Before you or a loved one receives treatment for heroin addiction in a drug treatment center, there are certain procedures you need to follow. Not every drug treatment program or plan works the same way for every addict. Each individual has different needs and issues that need to be addressed differently. This is to make sure that the facility you enter has a tailored treatment plan that meets your specific needs and issues.
The first step to take before entering a drug treatment program is the assessment process. Georgia has many options for drug assessment for you to choose from.
You can access assessment services in person with qualified addiction counselors or therapists, by phone or via online evaluations. The purpose of the process is to determine whether you have an addiction, the extent of your addiction, whether you have any co-occurring conditions, and to help in developing a treatment plan for you.
The assessment process helps drug treatment providers evaluate your needs so that they can provide the right treatment based on your individual case. They may also refer you to a physician for a medical evaluation. You must bear in mind that any co-occurring conditions will affect how your heroin addiction is treated. The physician will also diagnose any medical condition you may have before you start your drug treatment.
The next stage you need to go through is the pre-intake process. This is basically a simple process in which you will be required to fill out a form with certain information required for your treatment. You will also receive a list of documents and personal belongings you must bring to the drug treatment facility.
The pre-intake process is also conducted to help drug treatment providers find the right program in Columbus, Georgia to treat your heroin addiction. It also helps the providers design a tailored treatment plan to meet your unique needs and address your specific personal issues.
The pre-intake process gives drug treatment professionals an idea of your needs, allowing them to provide the best treatment to help you recover successfully from your addiction to heroin.
The intake process is basically an interview where the admissions staff of the drug treatment center can learn more about you. As mentioned earlier, no treatment plan works the same for everyone.
With the intake process, drug treatment providers can help design a tailored plan that addresses your specific needs and issues and give you the best possible opportunity to recover successfully from your heroin addiction.
There are many questions that you will be asked during the intake process. Some of the questions you are asked may be embarrassing or seem invasive, but remember the goal of the process and that you have the best chance of recovery with the right heroin addiction treatment plan. Here is a look at some of the questions that you will be asked during this process:
- When and why did you decide to seek treatment for your heroin addiction?
- When did you first begin using drugs or drinking alcohol?
- What was the first drug you ever used? How long did you use it?
- What drugs do you currently use? How often do you use it in a day?
- Do you use drugs other than heroin? If yes, how often?
- How has your heroin addiction affected your life?
What is your medical and mental health history? Are you on any medications for a condition at present?
- What is your history of employment?
- What is your current financial situation?
- How is your home and family life?
- Have you ever been arrested for drug possession or any other drug-related crime?
- Have you received treatment for your addiction before? If so, how long did you last before relapsing?
It might be tempting to lie during your intake interview due to shame or embarrassment. However, keep in mind that everything is kept confidential and the information you provide is only used to ensure that you get the right treatment plan to help you recover from your addiction.
Although it is not a treatment for drug addiction itself, detoxification is a highly important and useful first step when followed by some form of evidence-based heroin addiction treatment. While it is never the same for any two people, many of the detox programs for heroin addiction treatment reflect the heroin withdrawal timeline.
Detox is a precursor for drug abuse treatment. According to Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), detox is nothing but a series of interventions that are designed for the management of acute or chronic intoxication and severe withdrawal symptoms. For some people, it may last a few days, while for others, it can be for as long as a few months. This process can help you clear your head and think properly about future treatment plans. The idea is to get you to begin to recognize your addiction to drugs and decrease and stop your use of drugs.
Inpatient Treatment Center
Inpatient treatment centers are one of the options for drug treatment facilities that you can enter for heroin addiction treatment. It is also known as residential treatment program (RTP) which means that patients check themselves into a controlled facility to receive treatment. In an RTP, you receive 24/7 medical care and emotional support. Typically, an RTP runs anywhere from 30 days to 6 months. Some inpatient programs can last as long as 12 months.
During your inpatient treatment, you will receive constant medical care to help in preventing relapse. Clinicians are available to provide the medications and medical expertise you need to reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms.
You will meet with psychologists, psychiatrists, and counselors individually as well as in group settings to guide you on your recovery. If you need to remove yourself completely from your environment outside the facility due to access to drugs or because of stress, you can benefit greatly from an inpatient drug treatment center.
Outpatient Treatment Program
Outpatient treatment programs (OTP) offer a number of the services that inpatient treatment centers do, but you do not need to check yourself into a facility. You can live at home and take care of your daily responsibilities while receiving the treatment you need for your heroin addiction.
In an OTP, treatment sessions are scheduled on different days of the week. You must attend all of these sessions diligently for your treatment to be effective. When you check in on your scheduled days, you will be provided with the counseling and medications necessary for your treatment and recovery.
You can select an intensive outpatient program (IOP). This type of program is ideal for patients who do not need much structure or the medical support that other levels of care offer. It empowers you to live independently with support from family and friends and the community. An IOP is an excellent program to enroll in if you have successfully gone through withdrawal from heroin, or any other substance of abuse.
Recovery from drug abuse and addiction does not stop at the end of a treatment program. You should consider aftercare, as a kind of continued treatment that follows a shorter period of care at an addiction treatment center, such as intensive outpatient treatment or inpatient rehab.
Keep in mind that addiction is a chronic disease and that you must be able to make a long-term commitment to sobriety so that you avoid relapse. With a well-designed aftercare program, you can gain a coordinated support network to help in maintaining and building on the progress you made in your first treatment stages for heroin addiction.
Get the Best Treatment for Heroin Addiction in Columbus, Georgia
Columbus, Georgia has many trusted drug treatment facilities that you can enter to treat your heroin addiction. You can get the help you need from trained and experienced professionals who will make sure that you get the care and support you need to begin your road to recovery and live a healthy, happy, drug-free life.