Addiction and Substance Abuse

  • People talking to therapist at aa group therapy meeting, sharing addiction problems. Multi ethnic patients having discussion about alcohol issues with specialist at support session program.

Addressing the Rising Tide of Addiction in Pennsylvania: How High Focus Centers Can Help

January 2, 2024|Addiction and Substance Abuse|

Pennsylvania in 2023: A State Grappling with a Growing Addiction Crisis In 2023, Pennsylvania has seen a concerning rise in addiction rates, reflecting a broader national trend. Fueled by factors such as economic stress, the ongoing opioid epidemic and the lingering effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, this increase in substance abuse has left many communities searching for effective solutions. With our comprehensive approach to addiction treatment, High Focus Centers is here to help in this challenging landscape.   Understanding the Surge in Addiction While the rise in addiction in Pennsylvania is multifaceted and complex, the widespread availability of opioids, including fentanyl, continues to be [...]

  • A woman sitting alone and depressed in sunset

How Trauma Works as a Trigger for Mental Health and Substance Issues

July 19, 2023|Addiction and Substance Abuse, Trauma|

When someone is struggling with a mental health condition, they often have a relatively fragile emotional or mental state (sometimes both) that can be easily triggered. When someone is struggling with a substance use disorder, the dependence on drugs or alcohol can also make them vulnerable to being influenced into using.  Trauma can act as a trigger for both mental health and substance issues. The severity and generally long-lasting effects of trauma can leave a person reeling, no matter how hard they may try to shove down the feelings of pain. For men, especially, the tendency to avoid facing and [...]

  • Desperate man waiting for a phone call at home, he is staring at the phone with head in hands

What is Fentanyl Used For, and Why Do People Abuse It?

May 24, 2023|Addiction and Substance Abuse|

Have you ever popped an Advil and then, after not receiving the desired effects, taken another? Maybe even two? This happens with patients who have been prescribed opioids all of the time. Even though fentanyl is a powerful painkiller, one pill doesn’t always do the job, so a person takes it upon themselves to double or triple their dosage in a desperate attempt to manage their pain. Fentanyl is too potent of a drug to consume frequently in high doses and not experience negative consequences. Unfortunately, one of the most common repercussions of consistent fentanyl consumption is the development of [...]

  • Illustration of man imprisoned in a bottle of alcohol, surreal addiction abstract concept

How Should I Refer to Someone Struggling With Alcohol Misuse?

May 10, 2023|Addiction and Substance Abuse|

Have you ever been called a name that just rubbed you the wrong way? Did it make you feel suddenly boxed in, or associated with something you didn’t really want to be associated with? When you’re known by a particular name, it can leave you feeling all sorts of negative ways. You might feel like you suddenly can’t be anything different, or have to act a certain way or do certain things in order to live up to that name. Or, you may find yourself anxious to break out of this unwanted label. It is for this very reason why [...]

  • Man looking depressed while sitting alone with his head in his hand on his living room sofa at home

How to Tell the Difference Between Problem Drinking and Alcoholism

April 18, 2023|Addiction and Substance Abuse, Problem Drinking|

As a man, would you consider having four drinks in a day, consecutively or spread over a few hours, normal or a problem? As a woman, would you consider having three drinks in one day to be normal or a problem? According to an article by the American Family Physician Journal, both of these circumstances describe problematic drinking patterns. It’s not always easy to determine when occasional or moderate alcohol use turned into a heavy drinking problem or even addiction. The normalization of unhealthy substance habits (like social binge-drinking) has only aided in making the distinction even more difficult to [...]

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Can Marijuana Be A Gateway Drug?

April 4, 2023|Addiction and Substance Abuse, Education Center|

The conversation around marijuana is no longer black and white. In some states, marijuana is promoted as a borderline-miraculous plant in terms of its healing qualities, while other states continue to pump out negative statistics surrounding marijuana use.  While some people preach the potential dangers of marijuana and warn of its ability to act as a gateway drug, others fight equally as hard to de-villainize it and prove its benefits. As marijuana use continues to rise in the States, both legally and illegally, recreationally and medicinally, it’s important to remain aware of its effects on the individual and society as [...]

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Combating Substance Abuse Risk Factors Among Young Adults

December 20, 2022|Addiction and Substance Abuse, Teens and Young Adults|

The transition to independent living, or commonly called “adulting,” is an exciting time for many. Living on your own, having an income, making your own choices and the freedom it brings are experiences worth looking forward to. While moving out of a parent’s home or graduating from college is a thrilling and important step, it also brings its share of hardship. The changes that come with this transition period can also bring risk factors for substance use. Adolescents and young adults are the most susceptible age group to developing an addiction and here are some of the factors that contribute [...]

What Causes Domestic Violence and Substance Abuse?

October 6, 2022|Addiction and Substance Abuse, Mental Health and Addiction|

Both substance use and domestic violence begin as single incidents that cause harm and can quickly devolve into patterns of behavior. According to the Addiction Center, there is a high correlation between substance use and abuse and being under the influence of any substance greatly increases the risk of abusive behavior.  If you’re wondering what the relationship between abuse and addiction is, you’ve come to the right place. This article will explore the effects of substance use on violence and whether one behavior causes the other. Is there a connection between the effects of substance abuse and domestic violence? Yes. [...]

Relapse Statistics You Need to Know

August 15, 2022|Addiction and Substance Abuse, Education Center|

Talking about relapse is hard. It can be terrifying if you or someone you know is in recovery. There’s no reason to be superstitious that bringing up relapse will trigger it.  In fact, the opposite is generally the case. The more knowledgeable you are about addiction relapse statistics, warning signs and the nature of addiction, the more likely you are to minimize the potential for a relapse. Here’s what you need to know to stay on track and achieve the freedom you want. Addiction is a disease Understanding relapse begins with understanding what addiction is, and how an addiction forms. [...]

Relapse Prevention Techniques You Need to Know

August 11, 2022|Addiction and Substance Abuse, Supporting a Loved One|

For someone who has a loved one in recovery, relapse can be a person’s worst nightmare. Returning to drugs or alcohol can make sobriety seem out of reach and cause family and friends to lose hope, cut ties or give up.  Relapse is scary, but it’s not uncommon. In fact, the National Institute on Drug Abuse estimates that between 40 and 60 percent of those going through treatment for alcohol or drug addiction will relapse at some point. Some schools of thought consider relapse to be a part of the recovery process. While relapse may occur during your loved one’s [...]

Understanding Relapse: What it is and How to Prevent it

July 25, 2022|Addiction and Substance Abuse|

A common fear in those going through recovery (as well as those outside of their initial recovery, their friends and their family members) is the potential of a relapse happening. After someone has had themselves as well as their lifestyle closely monitored for so long, independent sobriety can feel daunting. Relapse, however, does not happen by chance; it’s not random, and it’s not something you have to fear. We know it can be tempting to think if they relapse, all hope is lost or that it’s a sign they failed, but it’s not. Failure only occurs when you give up. [...]

Dual-Diagnosis: PTSD and Substance Use Disorders

July 13, 2022|Addiction and Substance Abuse, Mental Health and Addiction|

Facing a mental health disorder is a struggle. Dealing with two conditions at once can be an even tougher battle. If you think you or a loved one might be facing a dual diagnosis of PTSD and a substance use disorder, here’s what you want to know. What is PTSD? Post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD, is a mental health condition that occurs when an individual has trouble processing and coping with a terrifying event. PTSD can develop in response to a single or repeated instance. Some event that may provoke PTSD are sexual assault, violence, experience in combat, living through [...]