Monday, February 27, 2017

Why Are Young Mothers Getting Opioid Prescriptions They Really Don’t Need?

A doctor writing a prescription
America’s addiction to opioids hovers at an unprecedented level. According to the Society of Addiction Medicine, drug overdose-related fatalities now comprise the leading cause of accidental deaths in the U.S with prescription opioids driving this surge.

And, in response, clinicians have upped the ante. Investing millions of research dollars to explore the development of more effective and efficient treatments for addiction.

Concurrently, prevention should also be a priority. While the distribution of prescription painkillers has specific applications, overprescribing can lead to serious and chronic addictive behaviors. That’s why it’s crucial to prevent problematic behaviors from snowballing into more serious conditions.

Related to this, one recent study examined the trend of opioid over-prescribing among new moms. They asked, why is this happening and what are the ramifications? This study, published in the March issue of the Journal Obstetrics and Gynecology, investigated the practice of opioid-prescribing after birth, which had not yet been studied widely.

"There are many guidelines for managing acute or chronic pain, but not for maternity care," said lead author Marian Jarlenski, a Pitt health-policy researcher. "We have a public health crisis with opioid addiction. We were surprised to see more than 1 in 10 women were going home with an opioid prescription."

Researchers found that twelve percent of lower-income women filled an opioid prescription soon after giving birth, even though most of them didn’t have a clinical reason for receiving a prescription for the addictive painkiller.

To investigate the likelihood of over-prescribing, scientists reviewed the medical charts of 164,720 women looking for new mothers who experienced conditions that could likely warrant an opioid prescription. This includes surgical causes that include procedures such as an episiotomy, a genital tear during childbirth and/or a tubal ligation.

They found that more than 18,000 mothers were prescribed an opioid post-childbirth while less than a third of those had a pain-causing condition documented in their medical chart.

"Are there some providers who always give women a prescription?" Jarlenski says. "Are there some who never do? What should the balance be?"

While these findings suggest that prescription painkillers are being overprescribed, it is a trend that can be reversed. With additional studies to develop more accurate clinical guidelines, we can help keep more Americans healthy and avoid addiction before it even starts.

Addiction Treatment for Women

Rising Roads Recovery is gender specific to create the optimal environment for women to facilitate changes in their lives and continue their growth.

Our groups and activities are specifically designed for the female perspective and women-only counseling sessions and 12-step groups allow for more open sharing which leads to better processing of past events and ultimately better outcomes. Let the road rise up to meet you and continue on a healing path. Contact us today at (866) 746-1558.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome is Affecting More Newborns

Newborn baby
Our country is facing a serious public health issue that only be described as an epidemic on an unprecedented scale. Opioid drug abuse is on the rise, and according to the Department of Health and Human Services, more than 240 million prescriptions are written annually for substances that have an addictive, morphine-like effect such as OxyContin, Percocet and Percodan.

Opioid abuse was initially confined to the low-income residents of inner cities but has since expanded to include a more diverse population - people from many walks of life. And, unfortunately, it is now impacting a larger number of pregnant women.

According to a recent article published in the New England Journal of Medicine, Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS) has quintupled in the past 12 years. NAS is a condition that describes a cluster of symptoms exhibited in newborns as a result of opiate exposure in the womb. Symptoms can range from mild to severe and in the most dangerous cases, infants with NAS can experience tremors, seizures and respiratory issues.

One of the article’s lead authors, Karen McQueen, RN, PhD of Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada explains the rise of NAS in the context of the larger trend. “The increase in cases of the neonatal abstinence syndrome corresponds with the reported rise in opioid use during pregnancy, which is attributed to the more liberal use of prescribed opioids for pain control in pregnant women, illicit use of opioids such as oxycodone and heroin, and a dramatic increase in opioid-substitution programs for the treatment of opioid addiction.”

As part of their research findings, investigators recommend an emphasis on greater preventative measures targeting women of childbearing age. Specifically, the researchers recommend that clinicians place a greater emphasis on helping to educate women about the benefits and risks of using prescription painkillers during pregnancy.

In general, the authors of the study strongly recommend that clinicians take a more empathetic approach. “Creating a compassionate, safe environment for the mother is important, since many mothers feel stigmatized and guilty regarding substance use and the neonatal abstinence syndrome, which can lead to impaired communication with health care providers.”

While opioid abuse is spreading, we can turn the tide through substance abuse education, evidence-based therapies and holistic addiction treatment. And, as this research suggests, we can make substantial improvements by emphasizing more preventative measures to stop addiction – before it begins.

Creating an Inspirational Program of Recovery

Our treatment center was created to inspire women to thrive in recovery. In addition to offering the best of the traditional evidence-based therapeutic processes that have proven effective in drug treatment programs, we also integrate therapeutic activities and educational topics that are designed to really inspire the soul of the woman who is new to recovery. Let the road rise up to meet you and continue on a healing path. Contact us today at (866) 746-1558.

Monday, February 13, 2017

3 Simple Ways to Celebrate Valentine’s Day with Friends

Women eating dinner
When you think about Valentine’s Day, what comes to mind? Chocolates, roses and candlelit dinners probably round out your list. While traditionally this holiday is a celebration of the romantic relationships in your life, at the core, it’s really all about celebrating loving relationships, which can take many different forms.

Given that, why not take this holiday to honor the good friends and family members in your life who show up for you during the good (and not so good) times? And, this is an especially great idea if you recently graduated from rehab. (Most addiction specialists recommend that you wait at least once year before pursuing new romantic relationships.)

If you’ve just started a new life of sobriety, you don’t have to feel left out on Valentine’s Day. You can still celebrate this holiday by taking the time to show your loved ones just how much you care. 

Here are a few ways you can celebrate this Valentine’s Day! Share the love and show your love!

(1) Spend the night learning something new!
It’s always fun to try something new and it’s even more enjoyable when you can do just that with your friends by your side. Sign up as a group to attend a yoga class you haven’t tried yet or get involved with a local cooking class.

(2) Give back to your community.
Have you thought about volunteering lately? Chances are, your friends have too. Take the initiative and invite your friend group to join you. Instead of spending the day showing just one person how much you love them, spread the joy around to your entire community. Consult some local volunteer groups in your area to learn which groups need some extra help.

(3) Host a Valentine’s Day potluck dinner!
Instead of spending the evening at a crowded restaurant, why not invite friends to join you for a casual dinner at your place instead? To keep things simple, just make it a pot-luck dinner and ask everyone to bring a home-cooked dish. And, to make it an extra special event – you can ask everyone to share their favorite story about another friend attending the get-together!

Rising Roads Recovery Center for Women

Rising Roads Recovery is a small women's residential treatment center in Orange County, California with the purpose of supporting you through your healing so that your addiction and co-occurring disorders stop causing havoc in your life. With comprehensive clinical care, 12 step participation, and an entire curriculum designed just for women by women, you are on your way to a healthy and happy life. Call (866) 746-1558 to learn more.

Monday, February 6, 2017

The Link Between Poor Sleep and Mood Disorders

Woman Sleeping in Her Bed
Based on findings from one recent study, you might reconsider staying up past your bedtime.
Scientists tracked the sleeping habits of 171 women for two weeks to evaluate the potential link between sleep quality and mood disorders. 

At the beginning of the survey, researchers interviewed participants to establish a baseline score of their risk for depression and anxiety. After that, researchers administered follow-up surveys on a daily basis to track variations in mood.

After evaluating the data collected, the researchers found that the women who consistently got less sleep had a higher risk of experiencing anhedonic depression – an inability to derive pleasure from activities they once enjoyed.

(Note: How much sleep you need may vary slightly based on your daily routine, but in general, the National Sleep Foundation recommends 7-9 hours each night for adults between the ages of 17 to 64.)

Based on these findings, good sleep hygiene can help reduce your risk of experiencing anxiety and depression. And, it delivers a variety of other powerful physical and mental health benefits too. Need a few more reasons to cultivate healthier sleeping patterns?

4 More Reasons Why You Should Prioritize Sleep

(1) Good sleep supports your sobriety.
Making sure that you get enough sleep is important for everyone, and even more so for those who are creating a sober lifestyle. By getting quality sleep, you can reduce your risk of anxiety and depression which are common relapse triggers.

(2) You are in greater control of your emotions.
Researchers at the University of California, Berkley found that the amygdala—an emotional center of the brain—was about 60% more active in people who were sleep deprived than those who were well rested.

(3) It supports other healthy behaviors.
When you are well rested, you’re more likely to engage in other healthy behaviors such as eating right, working out and pursuing hobbies.

(4) Your body will thank you.
Consistently getting enough rest has been shown to reduce your risk of developing diabetes, cardiovascular disease, immune disorders – and it can help you maintain a healthy weight.

Treatment After a Drug Relapse

If you have experienced sobriety but have had a relapse, our Boost Up Program is for you. Our post relapse care is designed for those who have had the taste of recovery and begun to feel the promises comes true in their life. Just like everyone’s recovery plan looks different, so does everyone’s relapse avoidance plan. You have a unique history that needs to be accounted for in your plan. At Rising Roads Recovery, we’re here to help. To learn more, call today: (866) 746-1558.