Addiction Treatment in Alpharetta
According to news reports, marijuana is the most abused illegal drug in Atlanta. Around 17% of students statewide have abused the drug by the time they reach the age of 17. The average of first use among the youth is 13.5 years. There is also a deadly opioid drug epidemic sweeping across the state. Seventeen deaths in Georgia were caused in four months in 2017 as a result of two synthetic opioids, furanyl fentanyl, and U-47700 – both are classified as Schedule I drugs for which the potential for abuse is extremely high, and there is no accepted medical treatment at present in the United States. Schedule I drugs include heroin, GHB, ecstasy, LSD, peyote, and hallucinogenic mushrooms while Schedule II drugs include opium, methamphetamines, cocaine, crack cocaine, oxycodone, and methadone.
Efforts Made to Reduce Opioid Abuse
According to the Fulton County Medical Examiner’s office, 154 deaths related to opioids occurred in the county in 2016 – an increase of 156% since 2010. At a meeting in July 2017, a resolution was adopted by Fulton County Commissioners to create a plan that would introduce effective prevention tactics for opioid misuse and abuse across the county. Vice Chair Bob Ellis and Commissioner Liz Hausmann sponsored the Opioid Misuse & Abuse Prevention Plan for Fulton County.
Additionally, leaders in Alpharetta hope that a new program will help in lowering the abuse of painkillers in the city. With the help of the Rotary Club, Alpharetta bought boxes to be put at its police headquarters and fire stations to help people empty their medicine cabinets of any dangerous, unused drugs, such as powerful painkillers, that their children can access. Although the boxes are small, police in Alpharetta hope that the program will put a major dent in the serious drug problem in the city.
Drug Possession Laws in Georgia
Drug possession laws in Georgia are exceptionally harsh compared to many other states, and if you do not have a good attorney, you can end up in prison. If you are charged for possession of an illicit substance, penalties depend on a number of factors, including the drug type, how much you possessed and your intentions with the drug, whether it is for your personal use or for sale. For example, if you were caught with less than 1 ounce of marijuana for personal use, the penalties would be significantly lighter than if you were caught with cocaine or heroin.
In Georgia, drugs do not have to be in your hand or pocket for you to be found guilty of drug possession. Possession in the state is defined as either “possessive” or “actual” which means that you could be charged with possession of the substances are in your home or your vehicle, as long as the authorities can prove that they were in your control.
Although marijuana possession is practically decriminalized in other states, possession of over 1 ounce of marijuana in Georgia is a felony offense, and you can land up in prison for anywhere between 1 and 10 years. If you are caught with less than 1 ounce, you will be charged with a misdemeanor with potential penalties that involve one year in prison and fines of up to $1,000. When you possess a Schedule I or II drugs, you will be charged with a felony offense where you can be sentenced to prison for anywhere between 2 and 15 years if it is your first offense. For second or subsequent offenses, sentencing will be longer.
Additionally, if you are convicted of possession in Georgia, and it is your first offense, your driver’s license will be suspended for a mandatory 6 months. If it is your second offense, your license will be suspended for 1 full year and longer for third or more offenses.
Addiction Treatment Laws in Georgia
Addiction treatment centers in Georgia are increasingly regulated, prompted by complaints from lawmakers and residents of northwest Georgia that several programs in the area largely treat people from out of state. The legislation was signed by Governor Nathan Deal. According to records from the State Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities, 1 in 5 people treated at a Georgia opioid treatment center came from out of state in 2016. In northwest Georgia, 2 out 3 patients were not from the state.
Governor Deal also signed two bills that are aimed at opioid addiction. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that in 2016, about 1,300 people died as a result of fatal drug overdoses in Georgia.
The first new law expands the prescription drug-monitoring program in the state. This program is intended to decrease over prescribing or prevent patients addicted to prescription drugs from hopping from one doctor to another to obtain a prescription.
The second bill permits the over-the-counter sales of naloxone, a drug that reverses an overdose. In December, the governor’s administration began permitting pharmacists to dispense the drug but needed to make changes in state law in order to continue the long-term practice of OTC naloxone sales.
Assessment of Addiction
There are many options for drug addiction assessment and evaluation within the state of Georgia for you to look at when you need one. The website of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration does not provide any comprehensive list of resources for drug addiction assessment and evaluation within the state. You can access assessment services by phone, or in person with qualified and reputed therapists or addiction counselors or through online evaluations. Although the SAMHSA site does not list any assessment resources, you will find many other drug treatment services within the directory.
Drug assessment and evaluation are free services that state health centers and substance abuse treatment programs provide. The program helps in assessing the needs of the addict so that the right treatment based on their individual case can be provided.
Do you want to know if a medical assessment and an addiction assessment are the same? The answer is that they are similar. The only difference is that a medical assessment focuses more on the addict’s physical health and helps in determining how qualified they may be for certain types of drug addiction treatments or rehabilitation. The addict may have a serious medical condition that does not allow them to attend certain forms of treatment or rehabilitation. This is exactly why it is important to get a drug addiction assessment – it will help ensure that you find the drug addiction treatment or rehabilitation program that suits your specific needs. The best way to find an addiction assessment program in Alpharetta, GA is to go online where you will find many resources to help you.
Before entering a drug treatment or rehabilitation program, there are a few processes you need to go through. One of them is the pre-intake process. This is a simple process that involves filling out a form. You will also be given a list of necessary documents and personal items that you need to bring along.
What is the importance of the pre-intake process? Every person’s journey on the road to recovery from drug addiction is different, and there is no ‘one size fits all’ addiction treatment or rehab program. The pre-intake is the first step to helping you find the right program or tailoring a treatment plan to meet your unique needs so that you are able to achieve greater success.
In the intake process, addiction professionals will have a discussion with you before any initial consultations take place. The process takes up to an hour or two to complete, and this is the time for you to communicate any concerns you may have. It is also an effective way for the addiction treatment center to gain an accurate picture of your background, addiction or dependency issues and lifestyle.
During the intake process, addiction professionals will ask you many types of questions, but there are certain topics that they frequently ask.
Some of these questions that you may be asked during the intake process include:
- When and why did you decide to seek treatment from a drug addiction treatment center?
- When did you first begin using drugs?
- What drugs do you use? How much do you use drugs?
- How has your dependency on drugs affected your life?
- What is your medical and mental health history? Do you take any medications for any condition?
- What is your history of employment?
- What is your financial situation?
- How is your family and home life?
- Have you undergone addiction treatment or gone to rehab before?
Questions like these allow addiction professionals to get a look at your history and the factors that may have led to your drug addiction. This, in turn, helps them tailor a treatment program to address your unique issues and effectively treat your addiction.
The detoxification and withdrawal process are important first steps in defining the drug treatment plan of an individual. The effects of drugs on the brain often rationalize the continued use of substances and have a negative impact on the otherwise good judgment. This makes it important to have a period without any drug use so that you can get to a stable state of mind.
Detox is a precursor to drug abuse treatment. SAMHSA defines detox as a series of well-thought-of interventions designed for the management of acute intoxication as well as severe withdrawal symptoms. For some people, it may last just a couple of days, while for others, it can go on for as long as a few months. During the detox process, you can 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.
Keep in mind that detox does not solve the psychological, emotional, cognitive and social issues that are associated with addiction. This is why it is extremely important that you pursue a long-term treatment plan for your addiction.
If you are struggling with addiction to drugs, you may need to find an inpatient drug treatment center. Inpatient treatment can provide you with the tools and intense therapy you need to overcome addiction.
At inpatient drug treatment centers, you have the opportunity to live with other people struggling with addiction while receiving the help you need for your addiction and recover successfully. You get round-the-clock care from trained and experienced professionals at the center. Inpatient facilities in hospitals offer 24/7 medical care from healthcare professionals while those located outside of a hospital may provide you with intermittent care from medical professionals.
You will receive therapy every day at an inpatient treatment center. In many cases, there may be 12-step recovery support programs you need to attend. These programs involve group meetings that provide recovery advice and peer support as you begin to work on the steps with other patients who are also struggling with addictions. There are inpatient treatment centers that use alternative support groups without 12-step programs.
An outpatient drug treatment program offers drug addiction treatment sessions that can be scheduled on various days throughout the week. You can continue with your regular responsibilities and live at home. However, you will be required to check into treatment at your allotted times for medication and counseling.
An outpatient program has different formats and intensity levels and also offers a wide range of services. However, the focus in this type of treatment program is on education, counseling and providing patients with a network of support.
There are three categories of outpatient drug treatment programs:
- Day Programs – Patients meet 5 to 7 days a week for several hours. They participate in group counseling, ongoing therapy, biofeedback, as well as music or art therapy and other adjunct therapies.
- Intensive Outpatient Programs (IOP) – This type of outpatient program is an excellent choice for those who are serious about abstaining from drugs and recovering from their addiction while still being able to work and perform the responsibilities they have. In an IOP, you will have to attend multiple sessions for a couple of hours every week where you will go through group therapy, relapse prevention education, counseling sessions and attend a 12-step program or similar recovery support group.
- Continuing Care – Narcotics Anonymous or Alcoholics Anonymous are continuing care groups and ongoing support resources that are designed to help you solidify your commitment to recovering from your addiction. They meet weekly and are typically facilitated by a licensed therapist.
Recovery from drug abuse and addiction does not stop at the end of a treatment program. You should consider aftercare, at its core, as a type of continued treatment that immediately follows a shorter period of care at an addiction treatment center, such as intensive outpatient treatment or inpatient rehab.
Aftercare is extremely important as it plays a critical role in overall recovery from your drug addiction. Regardless of the treatment provider, setting or methods used in the drug treatment program, aftercare programs essentially have the same goals, including:
- Maintaining recovery from drug abuse
- Finding different ways to prevent relapse
- Achieving a drug-free life filled with a sense of hope and rewarding, healthy relationships
Sober living homes are group homes where recovering drug addicts live together. When you live in a sober living home, you are required to follow certain rules and do your part by performing chores. Most importantly, you must be 100% sober while you are staying at the center.
Living in a sober living home can support your desire towards sobriety and help you in adjusting to and leading a life without your addiction. If you are trying to stop using drugs and need support from others who are going through the same experience to help you with recovery, a sober living home may just be the option you are looking for. Many addicts have successfully taken the help of sober living homes to help them gradually transition from a drug treatment center to living on their own without using drugs.
If you are struggling with an addiction to drugs, find a treatment center in Alpharetta, GA that suits your unique needs and recover from your addiction and begin your journey to living a drug-free, healthy life.