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Drug Addiction and Drug Overdose

Written on: March 9th, 2009 By:

Drug Addiction: Drug Overdose

There are many elements that require definition when talking about drug addiction.¬† What is the difference between drug abuse and drug addiction?¬† Why does a person struggling with drug addiction need to seek professional help at a drug rehab facility?¬† Why is cold turkey an unacceptable method for drug detoxification?¬† The answers to these questions highlight the obvious — families and friends do not want to see their loved one dying prematurely due to a drug overdose.

Drug overdose is the most common demise for those struggling with drug addiction who don’t get help. Unfortunately, this is a tragic end to a preventable event.

The Definition of a Drug Overdose

A drug overdose is when a person ingests too much of a certain drug, either prescription drugs or illegal substances, and the body is unable to process it sufficiently, resulting in the cessation of normal functions. A drug overdose can be accidental or intentional.  Many people who suffer from drug addiction also suffer from depression and may attempt to end their suffering by deliberately taking more than the amount their body has become accustomed to.  Most people who struggle with drug addiction develop increased tolerance to the drug so more and more is required in order to get the same high as before. Increasing dosage can lead to an unintentional drug overdose.  A drug overdose can occur from over-the-counter medications, prescription drugs or more potent street drugs.  It also occurs as a result of mixing drugs, such as alcohol and prescription painkillers, that depress the respiratory system resulting in slowed breathing, coma or even death.

General Symptoms of a Drug Overdose

Drug overdose does not always result in death.  Depending on where the person is, whether or not their alone, the quantity of drugs taken and the quickness of response from medical personnel, a person suffering from a drug overdose may survive.  There are various symptoms to be aware of if you suspect someone is suffering from a drug overdose. These include  a drastic change in one’s temperature, unlikely skin combinations such as hot skin without sweat or cold skin drenched in sweat, high blood pressure, rapid or fluttery pulse and respiration, uncontrollable vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal cramps, chest pains, blacking out or passing out. Severe symptoms include drug induced comas, unlikely skin combinations such as hot skin without sweat or cold skin drenched in sweat, organ failure, uncontrollable vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal cramps and chest pain caused by either the lungs or heart.   These symptoms of a drug overdose are not universal but if someone you see is suffering from any of these signs of a drug overdose, immediate medical attention is necessary.  If medical treatment is not available, then the most common result of a drug overdose is death.

Treatment for a Drug Overdose

A drug overdose does not have to be fatal.  Again, the odds of surviving a drug overdose improve rapidly if there is assistance from friends or family that can provide immediate access to medical personnel. The most common treatment for a drug overdose that offers immediate results is pumping the stomach.  This drug overdose treatment will rid the system of any drugs that have not yet been absorbed into the bloodstream.  Another way to prevent the absorption of drugs is by inducing activated charcoal into the system.

Drug overdose is a frightening ordeal and most often prove to be the wake-up call needed to those in denial about the severity of their drug addiction. Many people will voluntarily enter a drug rehab center in order to recover and overcome from drug addiction because their brush with death made them realize how important it is to live.

Get help at SouthCoast Recovery before Drug Overdose occurs

At SouthCoast Recovery, it’s about living. If you or a loved one are struggling with drug addiction, don’t wait until it’s too late. The sad truth is that few people survive a drug overdose. We can help. We offer 30, 60, 90 day and 6 month residential treatment in the scenic harbor town of Dana Point, California. We combine the finest medical and clinical care with holistic therapies in acupuncture, massage and meditation for overall mind, body and spirit well-being. Drug abuse and drug addiction is merely symptomatic of underlying issues. Many people do use drugs to escape emotional pain caused by traumatic life events or chemical imbalance. Our clinical therapist has nearly 44 years experience in the diagnosis and treatment of underlying issues that contribute to drug abuse and drug addiction. Don’t wait until drug overdose cuts your chance for a happy life, short. Call us today. Professional assistance is available 24/7.


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