Drug Addiction Treatment in West Jordan, Utah
West Jordan is a city in Salt Lake County, Utah, with a population of roughly 111,000. This thriving suburb of Salt Lake City extends to the foothills of the Oquirrh Mountains and is named after the nearby Jordan River. West Jordan received its name from Mormon settlers who entered the Salt Lake Valley in 1847. Since this time, West Jordan has grown to become one of the fastest growing cities in Utah. While West Jordan is a busy commercial hub for the surrounding area, it has experienced mixed economic conditions over the last few years. Like many places in Utah and across the United States, West Jordan continues to struggle with a number of substance abuse and dependence problems, including significant levels of prescription opioid abuse. If you know anyone in West Jordan who is currently living with a substance use disorder, it’s important to find professional help as soon as you can.
Demographics and Income in West Jordan
West Jordan is not a particularly diverse city in terms of ethnicity, with 89 percent of the population being White, 0.6 percent being African American, 0.6 percent being Native American, 2 percent being Asian, and 5 percent being from other races. Overall, 10 percent of the population identify as Hispanic or Latino. According to official government statistics, the median household income in the city is $68,442, with median individual earnings being $32,003. In the latest census, about 4.1 percent of families and 5.2 percent of the overall population were found to be living below the poverty line.
Illegal and prescription drug abuse in West Jordan and across Salt Lake City has been linked to property crime in the area, with people often stealing from houses and cars in order to finance their drug addiction. While the overall consumption of illegal street drugs in Utah is below the national average, the rate of prescription opioid abuse and related overdose deaths is very high.
Common Drug Problems in West Jordan and Utah
West Jordan and Salt Lake City experience a wide range of drug problems, including legal substances like alcohol and nicotine, prescription medications such as oxycodone and fentanyl, and illegal street drugs like heroin and cocaine. While the rate of illegal drug abuse and dependence is lower than the national average, the rate of prescription drug abuse is significantly higher. Opioid medications are a huge concern in West Jordan and across Utah, including substances such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, and fentanyl. According to the Utah Department of Health (UDOH), an average of 24 Utahns died from opioid overdoses each month in 2015, with Utah ranked seventh nationally for drug-overdose deaths between 2013 and 2015 according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Salt Lake County has a higher rate of opioid abuse, overdose deaths, and emergency department encounters than the state average.
Signs of Drug Abuse
Drug use affects people in a range of ways, with some people able to use drugs for a long time before developing problems and others almost becoming addicted overnight. Identifying problematic drug taking behavior is made even harder by addicts who lie and cover up the extent of their drug consumption. A formal or informal intervention is sometimes needed before someone will admit the extent of their drug problem, with specialized counselors able to help families and friends get their message through to the person involved. While many of the signs of drug abuse and addiction are related to the specific substance in question, there are some general warning signs that are worth watching out for. If you’re worried about a friend, a family member, or a work colleague, it’s important to read the warning signs and find help as soon as you can. Common signs of drug abuse include:
- unexplained mood swings
- unexplained mental health issues
- unexplained financial problems
- developing tolerance to certain drugs
- changing social groups
- not fulfilling work or school responsibilities
- using drugs in risky situations
- using drugs even when they create problems
- changes to sleeping and eating patterns
- unexplained insomnia or sleepiness
What is drug addiction?
An addiction is a compulsive brain disease recognized by an attachment to rewarding and reinforcing stimuli. People get addicted to a wide array of problematic behaviors and substances, with treatment often needed to help people recognize their problem and create new physical and psychological associations. Common behavioral addictions include sex addiction, exercise addiction, computer addiction, food addiction, and gambling addiction. Common substance addictions include heroin, cocaine, marijuana, methamphetamine, and a range of prescription opioids just to name a few. Drug addiction involves compulsive and impulsive actions, with addicted people continuing to engage in unhealthy behaviors even when they are known to cause problems.
Physical vs Psychological Dependence
While dependence is closely related to addiction, they are not the same thing and need to be treated in different ways. While addiction involves compulsive behavior patterns and uncontrolled actions, dependence is a specific condition defined by the existence of withdrawal symptoms when drug use is stopped or reduced. Physical dependence and psychological dependence are both possible, with the substance of abuse influencing the type and severity of withdrawal symptoms.
Substances that cause a physical-somatic withdrawal syndrome are normally central nervous system (CNS) depressants, including alcohol, heroin, prescription opioids, and prescription sedatives. Physical symptoms range from mild disturbances through to life-threatening complications, including things like headaches, nausea, vomiting, sweating, involuntary limb movements, seizures, hallucinations, and delirium tremens. Many of these symptoms need to be treated quickly in order to avoid problems, with opioid and sedative medications often used to reduce the severity of symptoms throughout the withdrawal period.
Substances that cause a psychological withdrawal syndrome include marijuana and a range of CNS stimulants such as methamphetamine, cocaine, and prescription stimulants. These substances do not produce dangerous physical effects when drug use is stopped, and are instead known to cause emotional and motivational problems. Common psychological withdrawal symptoms include lack of motivation, drug cravings, insomnia, anxiety, depression, and mood swings among others. Medications are not normally used to treat these symptoms, which are typically addressed through cognitive-behavioral therapy and other forms of psychotherapy during drug rehab. While psychological symptoms normally accompany physical dependence, the opposite is not necessarily the case.
West Jordan Drug Rehabs Treatment Steps
A formal or informal intervention is often needed before someone will accept the existence or extent of their drug problem. While some people realize that they have a problem straight away, others may be in denial for years before they are ready to accept the help they need. An intervention can speed up this process by making people more aware of their problems and the effect they are having on friends and family members. Intervention counselors are available from many treatment centers, with professionals able to work with people close to the addict in order to assist them through the process.
There are three main intervention models in use today: the Johnson Model, the Arise Model, and the Systemic Family Model. The Johnson Model uses a direct confrontational approach, with the Arise Model using a softer invitational approach and the Systematic Family Model focused on coaching rather than direct confrontation.
Assessment and Intake
Before being admitted into a drug treatment program, every patient needs to go through a detailed assessment and intake procedure. During this time, doctors and clinicians will attempt to identify any high-risk cases, along with any factors that might endanger or impede the treatment process. Some of the issues that need to be recorded include the substance of addiction, the extent of addiction, the history of addiction, mental health disorder, behavioral addictions, the existence of physical or psychological withdrawal symptoms, and any lifestyle factors that may get in the way of treatment. For example, issues such as dependent children, criminal justice issues, and homelessness may make treatment more difficult. Once the patient has been assessed, they will be directed towards detox or rehab treatment based on their needs.
Detox is the first stage of drug treatment for many people, especially those who are likely to experience physical withdrawal symptoms. Detox is designed to enable immediate abstinence and manage withdrawal symptoms, often through the use of medication. While some methods of detox are available that don’t use medications, rapid detox and other “cold turkey” programs can be dangerous and are not often advised. Before going through detox, it’s important to speak with a doctor or drug treatment professional. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) has identified three separate stages in every comprehensive detox program: testing and evaluation, stabilization, and helping patients to access further treatment.
The first stage of detox involves physical blood tests to check for currently circulating drugs, mental health examinations, and a general medical check-up. This is a crucial part of the process because it helps doctors to identify problems that may arise later. For example, heroin addicts and other opioid addicts can be at significant danger if they are already high when detox starts, with detox medications such as buprenorphine and methadone possibly increasing opioid exposure to dangerous levels. The second stage of detox attempts to stabilize patients, often through the use of medications. As mentioned, opioid drugs are often used, with Valium and other sedatives also applied in certain situations. The third stage of detox attempts to get the patient into additional treatment so that they can tackle the cause of their addiction.
Rehab is the cornerstone of most drug treatment programs, with inpatient and outpatient programs designed to follow detox in most cases. Individual treatment programs are based on either medication therapy or psychotherapy, the former of which is not always required. Opiate replacement therapy is the most well-known example of medication treatment, with medications also used to help alcoholics and sedative addicts while they are in recovery. In contrast, psychotherapy programs are administered to all patients regardless of their specific drug problem. Cognitive behavioral therapy, family therapy, and motivational enhancement therapy are three examples of different psychotherapy treatments used at rehab centers across the United States. Drug addiction rehab is available in numerous forms, from informal support meetings through to weekend programs and immersive six-month retreats.
Also known as inpatient rehab, this form of rehab offers the most comprehensive level of support while the patient is in recovery. Residential treatment centers (RTC) provide a full-time, live-in service which includes accommodation and ongoing treatment for the duration of the program. Residential programs can last anywhere from a single weekend though to a long six-months retreat. Most programs are somewhere in the middle, lasting anywhere from two to six weeks. RTC programs are advised for people who want to escape their home environment, those who need extensive medical support, and those with a long history of drug addiction.
Partial hospitalization (PHP) is the next level of care, with these programs providing full-time treatment during the week and allowing the patient to return home on the weekends. While PHP programs are not as comprehensive as RTC programs, they provide people with the opportunity to get support from loved ones while in treatment. Intensive outpatient programs (IOP) are another form of rehab that involves full-time 9-5 treatment during the day. IOP rehab does not provide accommodation support, with patients able to return home each evening. All of these options have their advantages and disadvantages, with patients advised to choose a program that meets their individual needs after speaking with their doctor.
Outpatient rehab includes a range of individual and sequenced treatment programs that are designed without accommodation support. From 12-step support groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) through to family therapy and meditation classes, outpatient programs are designed to help people as they recover from drug or alcohol addiction. Outpatient programs are available across Utah and all over the United States, including pharmacotherapy and psychotherapy treatment options. It’s important to recognize, however, that opiate replacement therapy is not available on an outpatient basis in all states. Generally speaking, outpatient programs attempt to promote long-term sobriety and recovery by helping patients to recognize their problems and develop new coping skills that don’t rely on drug consumption.
Unfortunately, relapse is an extremely common outcome of drug addiction and treatment. Also known a recidivism, relapse occurs when the patient returns to drug or alcohol use following a prolonged period of abstinence. This can happen at any time, with some people returning to their old ways immediately after they leave rehab and others relapsing months or even years down the track. In order to reduce relapse numbers and help people through this difficult period, dedicated relapse prevention techniques and systems need to be developed. Generally speaking, relapse prevention is about helping people to recognize potential triggers, avoid high risk situations, and cope with the challenges of life without resorting to drug use.
Relapse typically takes place in a series of three stages, with therapists able to help patient identify the warning signs before it’s too late. Common signs of emotional relapse include anger, sadness, frustration, mood swings, anxiety, depression, and feelings of isolation. Common signs of mental relapse include thinking about past drug use, planning future drug use, and spending time with drug-taking friends. Unless these warning signs are identified and treated accordingly, a physical relapse event is highly likely. If a breakdown of the recovery process does take place, it’s important for the patient to re-engage with treatment as soon as possible.
Aftercare described all treatment programs that take place upon the completion of inpatient or residential rehab. Most of these programs are based on motivational, cognitive, and behavioral methods, with some programs also providing practical support. Examples of aftercare include Narcotics Anonymous, Cocaine Anonymous, Crystal Meth Anonymous, SMART Recovery, family therapy, client centered counseling, and ongoing opiate replacement therapy. While some of these programs are designed to work on a long-term or indefinite basis, others provide temporary support while the patient re-engages with everyday life. For example, sober living houses help patients to access affordable and safe accommodation while they receive ongoing treatment. If you or anyone you know in West Jordan is struggling to overcome a substance use disorder, it’s important to find professional help as soon as you can.