Gateway Drug Rehab

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A gateway drug is believed to be one that is easily accessible in society. It was a phrase that was adopted in the 1980s during the height of the war on drugs. Those who believed in the gateway drug theory thought that when someone felt the effects of marijuana, it gave them “a taste” for drug use and they would progress to more potent substances. A multitude of studies exist on the subject, yet there is no proof either way due to the fact that addiction is also based on other factors. Cannabis is not as easily obtained in Japan as in the United States, and approximately 83% of people who used drugs recreationally had not used marijuana first. Another study, however, showed that people who had used marijuana before the age of 18 were more likely to abuse other drugs as an adult.

Many other factors are involved in someone who becomes addicted to drugs, such as environment and genetics, so alleged gateway drugs affect everyone differently. There has been a significant amount of data that shows individuals who take prescription pain pills may eventually have a heroin addiction. This is seen in the fact that 86% of heroin users had previously misused prescription opioids. An additional study had results with 90% of cocaine users previously having smoked nicotine. With environment and genetics being part of the equation, the question remains as to if a person’s character was actually the main component in the result. For those who find that they have fallen into the statistic of needing rehab because they have proceeded in a process started by a gateway drug, there is always help available when they need it.

What is the gateway hypothesis?

Gateway drugs are merely those that pave the way for someone to use more dangerous drugs. They are typically used in combination (polydrug use) until someone tries using the stronger one on its own. Some people can use any substance on a casual basis while others are genetically susceptible to becoming rapidly mentally or physically addicted.  The possibility of any substance being a gateway drug is a topic that is passionately debated in the industry. It can be dangerous for someone to try new drugs if they are unaware that one drug can exacerbate the effects of another. The gateway hypothesis also states that drugs have a distinct hierarchy, with abuse occurring in stages.

Can any substance be a gateway drug?

Alcohol is easily available to anyone over the age of 21. It is socially acceptable to drink at almost every social gathering, as well as sitting outside at night enjoying the cool breeze on a hot day. Someone who decides to inhale their first bump of cocaine or inject heroin for the first time is typically not a first-time drug user. They have most likely used a mind-altering substance in the past. Some of the most common substances that are socially acceptable and legal lead some people down a path of addiction. The most common ones include:

Is drug addiction treatment effective?

While someone may have made the decision to take that first hit of drugs, continuous use causes changes in the brain, rendering them useless to fight the cravings. Detox is not the only step that will heal someone. They may need long-term counseling to overcome their addiction.

Most drug rehab centers operate similarly. They use scientifically based evidence that has formed treatment protocols and been proven to be effective over the past few decades.  Detoxing from each substance has its own procedure, but they are all essentially the same and best used in combination with one another. Withdrawal can be life-threatening with opioids and alcohol, so medical monitoring around the clock is the best way to handle it. With over 20.7 million people in the United States having the symptoms that would be considered in need of substance abuse therapy, over 2.5 million actually seek out the necessary treatment to regain control of their addiction. The basic properties must accomplish the following:

Each addict has a different story of how they spiraled down the tunnel of addiction. They will, therefore, forge a different recovery story. Their plan for sobriety is dependent upon the severity of the addiction, which is based on the frequency and duration of use. During assessment to be admitted into a facility, a customized plan will form and determine the future course of action. One of the decisions is whether someone will benefit more from residential treatment or rehab from home. So, what are the advantages and disadvantages?

Substance is damaging to someone’s social, familial, and financial existence no matter what drug or drugs are abused. A few of them are more severe in their repercussions than others when they are being eliminated from the body. People tend to begin abuse with ones that are more accessible; however, their risk of becoming addicted is also based on factors such as genetics and environment. One neighborhood may have people with more access to alcohol, and in another, someone may only be able to find weed. Getting control of your life and being a productive member of society is important and can be done when someone takes advantage of the services of a gateway drug rehab.