The Importance of Medically-Assisted Treatment

For many people suffering from addiction, particularly drugs, and alcohol, admitting they need treatment often is a hard pill to swallow. However, when this life-saving decision is made, the first step of this comprehensive process is called detoxification, or formerly known as Medically-Assisted Treatment (MAT). It is important to note that detox is not a replacement for treatment, but a crucial first stage of the recovery process.

When someone is addicted to prescription painkillers such as opioids, or other drugs such as alcohol, the brain and body become negatively affected by these substances when abused. When someone has substance abuse issues, their body reacts differently. 

With every dose or drink, the body becomes dependent or tolerant of the chosen substance. While addiction is a disease, just like cancer and diabetes, there is no cure, and therefore, requires professional help to treat it.  

Here at Granite Mountain Behavioral Healthcare in Prescott Valley, AZ, we believe in saving people’s lives through Medically-Assisted Treatment (MAT). MAT aims to make detoxification safer and more manageable, and most importantly, lower the rate of relapse and deaths due to overdose.  

The First Step: Detoxification 

Medical detoxification is a process of eliminating and removing the addictive substance from the body. Done in an inpatient or outpatient rehab setting, the purpose of detox is to prepare an individual for recovery, and most importantly, help patients overcome physical dependency. 

For those who have substance abuse, their systems have already been accustomed to functioning with drugs and alcohol. In other words, their organs and brain have figured out ways to accommodate and flush these chemicals from the body. The process of detoxification is used to reverse that dependency. However, once this addictive substance has been removed through this process of detoxification, the body doesn’t adjust as quickly. 

What to Expect During Detox

Everyone and their addiction stories are different, and therefore, treatment options will vary, as each individual has different and specific needs and issues that need to be tended to. How long a person spends in a rehabilitation program depends on the frequency of use, underlying medical conditions, the use of single or multiple substances, and how long has the abuse been occurring.  During the comprehensive intake process, addiction specialists will get to know each patient, including their entire medical history and lifestyle, to fully understand the reasoning behind their addiction, including why and how.

A psychological evaluation is also performed to assess a person’s mental state and history. Oftentimes, people with substance abuse may have also developed a mental disorder, such as anxiety, depression, and bipolar disorder. 

Mental health disorders often go undiagnosed which is not beneficial as mental health is a major risk factor and reasoning behind someone’s addiction problems. Evidence shows that people with substance abuse often have a mental disorder, and therefore, abuse drugs and alcohol to rid themselves of their symptoms or suffer from addiction because they have an undiagnosed underlying issue. When substance abuse and a mental disorder occur simultaneously, this is known as dual-diagnosis or co-occurring disorder. 

The detox process helps specialists get a full overview of a person’s life with addiction, making it easier to create an extensive treatment plan tailored to their specific needs. At Granite Mountain, we believe in treating the “whole” person.  Both substance abuse and mental disorders are treated separately, with the hopes of increasing the success rate of one’s recovery. 


Oftentimes, people who want to get help, but don’t know where to start, tend to begin by trying to self-detox, which ends up making matters worse, because it often is not done with the proper methods. Treatment for addiction, especially to drugs and alcohol is not an easy feat by any means, and therefore, requires professional help. Attempting to do it yourself can further health complications, especially during withdrawal.

In other words, while detox is seen as a beneficial process, it also comes with its downfalls. As mentioned above, during detox, substances, commonly drugs and alcohol, are abruptly being forced out of the body more unconventionally, and therefore, due to the body not being used to it, severe unpleasant physical side effects known as withdrawal symptoms occur as a result. These symptoms range from mild to severe, including: 

  • Sweats
  • Nausea
  • Fatigue
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Muscle Weakness
  • Stomach Pain / Diarrhea
  • Tremors
  • Lightheaded / Dizziness
  • Headaches

While withdrawal is known to be a necessary, but often brutal part of the detoxification process, it is necessary to prevent complications and manage these symptoms that follow the cessation of drugs and alcohol. 

Patients seeking to detox should not only seek professional treatment but should also be not afraid to talk about their mental health, and what they are feeling during this difficult process. This is easier said than done, as most people do not know that mental health is a crucial part of one’s health, especially during rehabilitation. 

Not only does receiving treatment and detoxing affect a person physically but also psychologically. The physical discomfort of withdrawal can be severe and in some instances, the anguish that is caused to one’s mental being can be too much for some people, resulting in the following: 

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Insomnia / Sleeplessness
  • Feelings of hopelessness
  • Intense cravings 
  • Desire to relapse and use again

So, if you are experiencing mental anguish due to withdrawal, both medical and mental therapeutic support can significantly increase the chances of a successful recovery and reduce the risk of relapse and even death.

What is Medically-Assisted Treatment? 

It is important to note that detoxification is not a cure for addiction and substance abuse. That is why, after the detox process is complete in hopes to reduce the intensity of withdrawal symptoms, it is often recommended that people continued to be monitored and treated.

Aside from therapy and counseling, medications play a major part in the success of treatment for those with substance use disorders (SUD). A major part of addiction is attributed to a person craving their substance of choice. 

When specialists create a treatment plan to commonly treat opioid use disorder (OUD), alcohol use disorder (AUD), and drug addiction, they often factor in how to reduce unpleasant withdrawal symptoms, but also how to tell a person’s brain and body that they will no longer be dependent on and crave these substances. This use of medications within treatment is called Medically-Assisted Treatment (MAT). Question is, what exactly is medically-assisted treatment? 

MAT is very similar to detoxification, as it aims to flush these addictive substances from the body. Although, instead of ridding the body of toxicity to mainly reduce withdrawal symptoms through medication, medically-assisted treatment combines the use of both medication, counseling, and behavioral therapies to treat substance use disorders. 

People are not commonly addicted to drugs and alcohol, but to opioids too. The abuse of prescription painkillers is on the rise and continues to be a widespread epidemic not only in the United States but worldwide. There are three medications commonly used during MAT to treat substance abuse. These anti-craving medications include: 

  • Methadone: This narcotic is used to treat severe pain. Those with addiction, especially opioid dependence. Used during drug addiction detoxification and maintenance programs,  methadone is taken orally or injected to block the pleasurable effects (euphoria) that these drugs cause. 
  • Naltrexone: For those who are addicted to opioids, such as heroin, and oxycodone, Naltrexone is either taken in pill form or injected. This drug works by blocking opioid receptor sites, and as a result, it reverses the toxic effects of an overdose. 
  • Buprenorphine: Buprenorphine is a medication used during MAT that is a more potent and longer-lasting analgesic than morphine. It works by diminishing the effects of physical dependence on opioids, such as withdrawal symptoms and cravings.

As with any disease, the best way to diminish the number of people impacted by drug and alcohol abuse is through education and prevention. 

Benefits of Medically-Assisted Treatment

If a person practices abstinence but ends up relapsing after some time has passed, they are also at high risk of overdosing, because their body is not used to absorbing the same dosage or amount of drug. 

Research has proven that there is always a high risk of relapse during treatment for those suffering from addiction. However, for those receiving treatment with the help of medications, the risk, and probability of relapse greatly decreases. Additional benefits of medically-assisted treatment include: 

  • Expert symptom relief
  • Clean and safe
  • Professional medical help
  • A supportive and therapeutic environment
  • Increases abstinence from opioids 
  • Increases treatment retention 
  • Improves social functioning
  • Reduces the risk of overdose
  • Reduces withdrawal symptoms

Life After Treatment

The treatment journey for those suffering from addiction, especially substance use disorders, is never over. The saying “Once an addict, always an addict” rings true. While in treatment and after one leaves the facility to go to another one or home, it is just another phase in the process. 

As supportive as friends and family may be, trained professionals are the best option to treat addiction, and help with the unique physical and mental after-effects addiction sufferers may experience during or after detox. 

The importance of medical supervision during the beginning of treatment especially, can’t be stressed enough. Medically-assisted treatment (MAT) is known as the safest and best step individual suffering from addiction can take, in hopes to have any chance at recovering, and most importantly, saving their life. 

If you or someone you know requires detox, many facilities can provide the best possible detox options, including medically-assisted treatment.

By using medically-assisted treatment methods during recovery, as a means of opioid detox, during one’s recovery, this will reduce one’s risk of overdose, relapse, and most importantly, death. This support while in treatment is crucial, as these programs provide a source of comfort while adjusting to sober living.

Granite Mountain Behavioral Healthcare Can Help

Granite Mountain Behavioral Healthcare located in Prescott Valley, AZ, believes in the use of medically-assisted treatment. This method is best suited for our patients needing treatment for substance abuse, including addiction to alcohol and drugs such as opioids. Our mission is to help our patients throughout all stages of their recovery process, and beyond. 

Through MAT, we aim to achieve long-term sobriety, by treating our patients as a “whole” from beginning to end. In other words, we believe in patient-centered care and treating all aspects of addiction to end substance dependency and the control addiction has over people’s lives. 

By using this evidence-based treatment method involving medications in addition to therapy, has been proven to drastically reduce one’s risk of overdose, relapse, and most importantly, has saved lives. Most importantly, we provide the necessary resources to effectively teach someone how to cope and adjust to their newfound healthy lifestyle and maintain sobriety.  

Know you are not alone, and help is available! If you are ready to take back control over your life and become sober, contact us today at (877) 389-0412.





Signs of Adderall Abuse

Signs of Adderall Abuse: Who is Abusing it The Most?

With any drug, most people are aware that there are often side effects associated with taking it. For those who take Adderall, prescribed or not, the reward is oftentimes more important than the consequences. Individuals who use this drug regularly may begin to show signs of Adderall abuse.

Are you or someone you know addicted to Adderall and don’t know where or who to turn to for help? At Granite Mountain Behavioral Healthcare, our drug addiction specialists help people with drug addiction get back on the road to sobriety. 

One of America’s Favorite Drugs of Choice

Many students and former students would most likely say that studying late into the night and cramming for exams was just a normal part of being in high school and college. But, can you think of how many countless stories that you have heard about someone who used Adderall in some capacity when they were in school? 

While it is the norm, especially more so in college to pull an all-nighter, people are able to keep up with their crazy academic workloads, because they resort to taking Adderall, also known as the “Study” or “Get ahead” drug. 

Adderall does seem to keep people laser-focused. But, what is crazy, is not why people take it or how it works. Instead, the number of people who use it, prescribed or often unsubscribed, is alarming. Surprisingly, this medication is so easy to get. It is true to say that Adderall has become the foundation of most modern American college campuses today. 

Think about it for a second. A magic drug that makes people feel like a rock star at school or work; hyperalert and able to get anything done. I know, it sounds like Charlie finding the golden ticket in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. But, truth is, while Adderall is approved by the FDA and only available through a prescription from a licensed psychiatrist, it is one of the drugs most frequently abused and used illegally. 

What is Adderall? 

Adderall is a medication classified as a stimulant, made up of amphetamine and dextroamphetamine. It is commonly used to treat people diagnosed with a behavioral disorder, such as Attention Deficit Disorder/Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADD/ADHD), and sleep disorders, such as Narcolepsy. For individuals with these disorders, the drug helps one’s ability to focus, pay attention, and control behavior. Other symptoms that result from taking Adderall include suppressed appetite and weight loss. 

Only available by prescription, Adderall is a tablet that is commonly ingested orally. Available in various dosages, ranging from 5mg to 30 mg, depending on the person and the severity of their symptoms. According to the National Institute of Health (NIH), doctors usually start patients with a lower dose and gradually increase it as needed. 

While Adderall is one of the most well-known medications used to treat hyperactivity, there are two versions, Adderall and Adderall XR. Both Adderall and Adderall XR work by increasing these neurotransmitters in the brain that are responsible for regulating attention and focus. While both types have the same ingredients, they absorb in the body differently at different speeds, along with the strength and dosage. 

Adderall and Adderall XR

Adderall tablets are usually taken first thing when someone wakes up in the morning, so it can absorb, as subsequent doses must be taken four to six hours apart. More than one Adderall pill can be taken as instructed. 

Adderall XR is a secondary form of Adderall, but with an extended-release. This means, that the capsule dissolves slowly, and the ingredients are released into the body throughout the day, which makes the drug last for a long period of time. Adderall XR is only taken once a day.

So, the question is, how does someone realize that they are abusing a drug, such as Adderall?

Adderall Usage and Abuse: High School and College Students

This may be a hard pill to swallow, but the most common group of Adderall abusers is the American youth, ranging from high school to college students. A study published in The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry found an increase in the non-medical usage of Adderall, resulting in an increased number of ER visits, but no increase in prescriptions for the drug.

This evidence further indicates that Adderall abuse is on the rise, especially on college campuses, being the second-most common drug abused, besides marijuana. 60 percent of people ages 18-25 use the drug without a prescription.

Students often see using Adderall as a win-win situation. After all, what’s not to like about being able to focus for long periods of time for a few dollars or for free even? Those who sell or share Adderall justify it with the idea that “sharing is caring.” 

Adderall is now so prevalent on college campuses that students act like it is water because they perceive the drug as a harmless and relatively benign substance. As the pressures of school increase, people found it necessary to increase their dosage, makes sense right? 

However, again, people don’t understand or are aware of the science behind what these drugs can do to one’s brain and body. The more a person takes Adderall, the more their body will become used to it. While the drug has its benefits, it still has addictive properties, and those who don’t necessarily need it can become addicted if not careful. 

The more someone takes Adderall, the body becomes dependent on it, which often leads to the start of abuse and addiction. This is because, just like prescription opioids, Adderall is known for its high potential for tolerance, which is what leads to addiction, or the progression to other stronger substances. The side effects of Adderall withdrawals can be debilitating, which can make it difficult for people to quit using.

Adderall Abuse and Addiction

One Adderall pill was enough to convince you that the drug was amazing. Once people who are especially not diagnosed with ADHD continue to abuse Adderall, they experience what is called “The Adderall High.” The drug produces euphoria and gives people energy. But it is much more than that. It kind of makes people feel like they can do anything, feel almost superhuman. This is where the danger comes into play. 

When people are on Adderall and then come off the drug, they will often start to seem depressed and lethargic. They may not be interested in doing anything, and they tend to be detached from the people and activities they once enjoyed doing. 

There are many signs of Adderall abuse. Also, there are also common warning signs that someone is addicted to Adderall, not just using it recreationally. Remember that addiction can include a psychological or physiological dependence on the drug.

The problem comes in when people who use Adderall keep taking the drug. His or her body may become dependent on it, eventually. As a result, the individual’s body slowly stops working properly. This is due to substance dependency and tolerance. 

Identifying Some Signs of Adderall Abuse

Adderall abuse occurs in several ways. Some of the common signs that someone is abusing Adderall include:

  • The need to take bigger and bigger doses to feel an effect
  • Continuing to use Adderall despite negative effects and consequence
  • Using a higher dose of the substance than prescribed. 
  • Taking the medicine through a non-approved method like snorting.
  • Taking the drug for reasons other than medical need, such as to stay awake for long periods of time.
  • Using the medication more frequently than prescribed.
  • Taking someone else’s medication.
  • Spending excessive amounts of money on Adderall and purchasing it from an illicit source for recreational use.

Eventually, with continued use of Adderall, people will start to experience withdrawal symptoms if they don’t take the drug, and ongoing use of Adderall can lead to chemical imbalances in the brain. The brain becomes so used to the Adderall over time, that every time it is taken, what once worked in the beginning, no longer works or has the same effect. 

Therefore, people continue to increase the amount they take, to feel the same “high” effect they once used to feel from a lower dosage. Before they know it, they are addicted and need help to end this vicious cycle of Adderall abuse. 

How Does Adderall Affect the Brain and Body? 

Adderall, a stimulant, which works by increasing the levels of neurotransmitters known as dopamine and norepinephrine within the central nervous system (CNS), consisting of the brain and spinal cord. 

Norepinephrine is responsible for producing many effects within the body. It’s mainly associated with releasing adrenaline. This provokes the “fight or flight” response when the perceived danger. Norepinephrine affects how the brain responds to events, particularly the speed to which it reacts to outside stimuli.

Dopamine is the body’s “feel-good” chemical. This is because it plays a major role in the motivational component of reward-motivated behavior. 

When someone takes Adderall, norepinephrine speeds up the CNS. This keeps the neurotransmitter in the synapses longer. In turn, it triggers alertness, clarity, increasing focus, and decreasing appetite. Dopamine is the reward neurochemical. It’s why someone who uses Adderall may experience feelings of happiness or euphoria. While euphoria from dopamine is natural and warranted, drugs like Adderall produce abnormal amounts of it. This leaves people who need the drug or want it coming back for more.  

When someone has ADHD, taking Adderall helps them be calm, focus, concentrate, think things through, and control their behavior. Sometimes, people who don’t actually have ADHD or haven’t been properly diagnosed still take Adderall. This is due to the fact that they see it as helpful. While it is illegal for individuals with a prescription to sell drugs to others, that doesn’t stop some from profiting off their prescription. 

However, the brain sees it differently. For some, the drug can have the opposite effect. In other words, in people with ADHD, the drug, used in conjunction with appropriate behavioral and psychotherapeutic interventions, brings their level of stimulation down to a level where they’re better able to function. In healthy people, the drug has the opposite effect. It over-stimulates the brain, causing long-term adverse symptoms and withdrawal.

Common Symptoms of Adderall Withdrawal 

  • Weakness or numbness in extremities
  • Lack of energy
  • Irritability or anger
  • Insomnia
  • Constipation
  • Headaches
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Low libido
  • Vision problems
  • Peeling or blistering skin
  • Mental problems such as mania, paranoia or seizures

Side effects are a sign of what is occurring within the brain and the body. Our bodies are connected to our minds. So, whenever something happens in the brain, it sends a signal to the body for a reaction. Adderall creates a lot of activity in the brain. This can be problematic for people who have a mental disorder such as anxiety. Taking this drug can worsen one’s mental health disorder symptoms. Still, that doesn’t stop people from becoming addicted

Thankfully, there is help for those who are suffering from substance abuse. Individuals who are dealing with Adderall dependence can find hope. Through treatment and therapy, people can become free from addiction.

Let Granite Mountain Behavioral Healthcare Help

Granite Mountain Behavioral Healthcare offers drug addiction treatment to help those who are dependent on Adderall get clean and maintain sobriety. The biggest step you can make toward recovering from addiction is picking up the phone and asking for help. 

Our goal is to provide compassion and support during your decision-making process for seeking treatment. We are here for you every step of the way. Contact us today at (877) 389-0412. 


Warning Signs of Alcoholism

Exploring the Warning Signs of Alcoholism

Have you ever wondered where alcohol comes from, and why people drink it? Well, we are here to tell you. Whatever your drink of choice is, whether that be wine, beer, vodka, tequila, or a mixed drink, these all have something in common, they contain alcohol. After all, it is 5 o’clock somewhere right? The question is, how does someone know they or their loved one has a substance abuse problem, and realize they need professional help at an alcohol recovery program?

When making alcohol, there are different processes are depending on what you type is being brewed. Grains, fruits, and vegetables are put through a specific anaerobic process called alcoholic fermentation, which in Latin means, “To boil.” During fermentation, yeast mixed with micro-organisms convert sugars such as glucose, fructose, and sucrose into cellular energy, producing and releasing the by-products of ethanol and carbon dioxide. For example, wine and cider are created when fruit is fermented, grain barley and rye are used as the bases to produce beer and spirits. 

Whether you drink alcohol or not, the Internet is filled with advice and mixed messages. On one side of the discussion, research states that drinking alcohol such as red wine has health benefits, and on the other side of the spectrum, we hear more often about those drunken stories and that drinking is bad for you. 

Truth is, both sides of the story are not wrong, but there is a point where moderation doesn’t exist anymore, and it becomes more than just partying, and defined as a problem. The specialists of Granite Mountain Behavioral Healthcare are here to help. 

What is Alcohol, and Why Do We Drink It? 

Alcohol also known as ethyl alcohol is a substance produced by yeasts that digest sugars in carbonate-rich foods, such as grapes when making wine, or grains to brew beer. Ethanol is the main psychoactive ingredient in the popular alcoholic drinks we consume and is responsible for making you feel that tipsy and drunk sensation. Many people enjoy drinking alcohol for a variety of reasons including:

  • Celebration
  • Socializing 
  • Reduce anxiety and shyness
  • Self-confidence increases
  • Taste
  • Sense of identity and belonging
  • Likes the way it makes them feel

While drinking alcohol may be a social norm and is used as a symbol of celebration or for comfort, we tend to forget that alcohol is also a form of the drug, the one most consumed worldwide. For many drinking is as much as a part of daily life as getting dressed or eating breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Although, since most people consume it so regularly, we don’t know what it does to us, or why it causes (some of) us to suddenly think that dancing on a bar or stripping your clothes off a brilliant idea. 

The truth is, that this social acceptance and normalcy of drinking, makes us forget and ignore the harmful effects that alcohol has on our brain and body, but most importantly, how drinking can ruin someone’s life if it becomes out of control, which it often does. 

How Alcohol Affects Our Brain and Body

 The way alcohol affects the body, and the way they act when they consume it is different for everyone. In addition to all the reasons mentioned above, people also use alcohol to reduce anxiety and to relax. Although, drinking can induce anxiety and increase one’s stress levels. 

What some people fail to realize or remember is that alcohol is classified as a depressant. In other words, when we drink alcohol, it slows down our central nervous system (CNS) along with our inhibitions. 

Our brain functioning and neural activity, meaning drinking can have extremely powerful effects on the brain and body, both neuropsychological and physiological, due to the release of GABA, the primary inhibitory neurotransmitter within the brain. GABA is responsible for controlling fear or anxiety. Functioning, behavior, mood, and mental state are affected the most, including vital functions, such as decision making, movement, reaction time, etc. 

Alcohol: A Depressant and a Stimulant

Alcohol is categorized as a depressant. But it also produces both sedative and stimulating effects. The amount of alcohol someone drinks, and how they act when they do, determines the type of effect one will experience. 

As evidence has proven, most people drink for the stimulant effect, in other words, to “loosen up,” or reduce anxiety. In other words, a few drinks can spark energy, elation, and excitement; it gives you a buzz. This proves that there is more to alcohol’s effects, and it may be defined as more than simply a depressant. 

When a person consumes more alcohol than their body can handle or their tolerance becomes higher than usual, they will become drunk. They’ll experience the other effects of alcohol (sedation), such as cognitive impairment. Alcohol produces feelings of relaxation. At lower doses, alcohol is a stimulant, producing the feeling of euphoria. It may make a person more talkative and social. 

Understanding the Effects of Alcohol

To some, it may seem normal for people to become drunk once in a while. Also, it’s natural for people to experience the stimulating effect of alcohol. But studies suggest that drinking slowly is more likely to cause relaxation and reduce anxiety. In a sedative state, drinking quickly tends to increase the effects of stimulation. This is what most people want. However, those with alcoholism, dependency issues, and substance abuse, it is the other way around. They drink to experience the feeling of relaxation/sedation or becoming drunk. 

Consuming alcohol can depress someone’s central nervous system to an extreme extent, that it results in slurred speech, stumbling, and loss of balance, disturbed perceptions, and inability to react quickly. Mentally, alcohol reduces a person’s ability to think and make rational decisions, due to distorted judgment. Drinking too much too quickly not only makes a person intoxicated but, the more a person consumes, the more they depress their CNS, which can result in severe health complications, including slowed heart rate, respiratory failure, coma, alcohol poisoning, or worse death.

Alcoholism and Alcohol Abuse Disorder (AUD)

Whether you go to happy hour with your friends or co-workers, drinking at home, or going out to a bar or club, alcohol is omnipresent. Whether you are a partier or not, drinking is just a part of life. What is even truer, is that research has shown that alcohol affects everyone differently, this includes both mood and behavior. 

There is a clear difference between getting drunk most of the time when you go out drinking, and drinking excessively most days, where it hinders your ability to function. Most people when they go out like getting drunk, but there is a thing called limit and moderation. Drinking “in moderation” means having no more than one drink if you’re a woman, and no more than two if you’re a man. Unfortunately, moderation does not register in some individual’s brains, and they do not or cannot control how much and how frequently they are drinking. 

In other words, everyone has heard the saying, “Know Your Limit,” and while it is true that some people can drink in moderation or get tipsy/drunk and be able to maintain a somewhat normal demeanor, other people cannot. This is called substance abuse or alcoholism. 

What is Alcoholism? 

When a person binges drinks or cannot live without drinking alcohol, they become so dependent on it, meaning their body craves it, so much so, that it impairs their ability to function in their daily life. This is when casual drinking becomes a substance abuse issue that needs attention. Often, however, people who drink excessively may not realize they have an issue, are too embarrassed to admit they have a problem, or want to ask for help, but think they can’t afford it due to the known perception that healthcare is expensive. 

Alcoholism is also known as Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD) is defined as a chronic disease or addiction to drinking alcohol, specifically categorized by uncontrolled drinking habits. Addiction is a monster that controls the brain, especially those struggling with substance abuse. Those with this disorder do not know what moderation is. They drink to feel good and cope and get drunk, and before they know it, they don’t know how to stop. 

Further Information About Alcohol Use Disorder

Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD) is an extremely serious problem in our world today. It affects approximately 16 million adults in the United States, meaning one in thirteen adults abuse alcohol or have alcoholism. While the drinking age in the United States is 21, that is often not followed. Research shows that people who begin to drink before the age of 15 are twice as likely to abuse alcohol. They’re four times more likely to develop a dependency on it.

Having alcoholism and being dependent on it are two different things, but one leads to the other. Binge drinking alcohol leads a person to become dependent on the substance. But, in an extreme case that is harmful and starts to ruin their livelihood. So, how do you know if you or a loved one is an alcoholic? Truth is, looking out for specific warning signs and understanding the symptoms is very important. Knowing more about the effects alcohol has on the brain and body can help. 

The more people are educated on these matters, the better. It can reduce the statistics that show the increase of incidents, overdoses, and deaths related to alcohol use and binge drinking. 

What Are the Warning Signs of Alcoholism? 

Ask yourself these questions below:

  • Have you continued to drink even though it was making you feel depressed or anxious or contributing to other health problems?
  • Do you find yourself in situations where you end up drinking much more than you intended?
  • Do you no longer have an interest in other activities and hobbies since you started drinking?
  • Have you experienced symptoms associated with alcohol withdrawal?
  • Have you felt an urge or craving to consume alcohol?
  • Do you into situations while drinking that increase your chances of harming yourself or others (i.e., drinking and driving)?
  • Has alcohol use caused you to get in trouble with the law? (i.e. DUI) 

If you or your loved one’s answers to a majority of these questions above is yes, it is time to get help. You can consult with our substance abuse specialists at Granite Mountain for information. The bottom line is how alcohol affects you. If your drinking is causing problems in your life, then you have a drinking problem. 

More About Alcohol Use and Alcoholism

It is important to note, that just because you drink, does not mean you have a problem. But it is important to know the warning signs of alcoholism, and what you can do to help or get help. Not all alcohol abusers become alcoholics, but it is a big risk factor that requires attention. 

It’s not always easy to tell when you’ve crossed the line from moderate or social drinking to problematic drinking. Drinking is very common in many cultures. Also, the effects of alcohol use vary widely from person to person. So, it’s not always easy to figure out if you have a drinking problem. 

While alcoholism is genetic, it can also develop suddenly in response to life occurrences. Some people may develop alcoholism due to stress-producing changes, including:

  • Changes at work
  • Relationship problems and breakups
  • Retirement
  • Death of a loved one

Other times, it can creep up on a person. The more one drinks, their tolerance to alcohol increases, and the body eventually continue to crave it. Those who binge drink or drink every day may be at risk for developing an alcohol use disorder. They may also be at risk of becoming an alcoholic. 

There are several warning signs to help identify if an individual has potential alcohol abuse. While many of these signs are recognizable, for some, it may be more difficult to identify. Then again, everyone and their situations are unique. 

Also, the severity of alcohol abuse may play a role in the warning signs a person exhibits. Some people try to cover the fact that they drink a lot by isolating themselves, which often makes it hard for friends or family to intervene and get them help. So, how do you know when you’ve crossed the line to alcohol use disorder (AUD)?

Granite Mountain Behavioral Healthcare Will Help You Recover

Alcohol is the most common form of substance abuse among those who seek help from addiction treatment centers. At Granite Mountain, our specialists help those who are struggling with alcohol use disorder. Not only do we help people quit drinking, but we also help them to develop coping mechanisms. These skills help individuals to overcome the strong desire to use again. They also enable people to build healthy relationships and prevent relapse. Most importantly, individuals can enter a life of happiness, health, and long-term sobriety.

Our alcohol recovery programs include: 

  • Stabilization Programs
  • Structured Sober Living Homes
  • Transitional Living Programs
  • Intensive Outpatient Programs
  • Dual Diagnosis (Co-Occurring Conditions)
  • Life Skills & Coping Mechanisms Development

To learn more about the warning signs of alcoholism and how to help a loved one, or help yourself become sober, contact us today at (928) 756-0694. 


Group Therapy for Heroin Detox

What to Expect Going Through Heroin Detox in Yavapai County, AZ

What Is Heroin?

Heroin a derivative of the opium poppy flower, which is native to Asia, Mexico, and South America. This drug is extremely addictive and is illegal in the US. It has the appearance of white or brown powder, or more the popular black tar. Some of its names are smack, horse, junk, and brown sugar.

How Addictive is Heroin?

It doesn’t matter how you use it, once it is in your system, heroin hits the brain rapidly. It is very easy to develop an addiction to heroin. Even after just one use.

Heroin can be smoked or snorted, although most heroin users use a needle to inject it directly in the vein to get the fastest high. It is also the most dangerous way to take it. Injections cause the risk of overdosing to increase dramatically, and the risk of infection from dirty needles is very high.

How Does Heroin Effect You?

Directly after a hit of heroin, the brain is flooded with endorphins, it is a rush of euphoria. After several hours, you’ll experience a slowing sensation like the world is moving slow. This can cause a user to think slower and sometimes even walk slower. Some heroin users express that they feel like they are in a dream.

Here is a study in Illinois concerning suburban users, some defined the use of heroin gave them a feeling of being wrapped in a warm blanket and worries were gone.

This potentially lethal drug sometimes causes vomiting or nausea. It can also create an urge to scratch and itch. Heroin in the system changes your brain’s chemistry and can even block pain signals or slow both breathing and heart rate. Overdosing will cause you to stop breathing and lastly die.

Heroin Statistics

Studies have found that there is a connection between drugs and mental health issues. Many heroin users try to self-treat their anxiety and other stressful issues with drugs. This Illinois study reports that around 75 percent of heroin users indeed had some form of mental illness like ADHD, bipolar disorder, or depression.

To say there is a spike in heroin use is a bit of an understatement. Documented use of heroin has virtually doubled from 2007 to 2012. This is more than just a spike. It is an indicator of the opioid crisis in America.

Some drug specialists claim that this crisis is mainly connected to the increasing abuse of prescription painkillers like Vicodin and oxycontin, which are also in the opioid family.

What Does Heroin Really Do To Your Body?

Using heroin consistently causes your body to build up a tolerance to it. This doesn’t mean that heroin can’t harm you. What this means is that you will require more heroin to get the same level high. The more you use the more your body will depend on it. Attempting to quit heroine will leave you with symptoms. These symptoms are known as withdrawal symptoms. They could range from feeling jittery, experiencing chills, vomiting, and muscle and bone pain.

Heroin withdrawal symptoms could potentially last for a week. Some symptoms may be severe:

  • Cravings
  • Nausea
  • Shaking
  • Sweating
  • Depression
  • Nervousness
  • Agitation
  • Abdominal pain
  • Muscle spasms

Heroin use may also cause:

  • Collapsed veins
  • heart lining and valves Infections
  • Skin abscesses
  • Contraction of HIV/AIDS, hepatitis B, and hepatitis C
  • Miscarriage
  • Lung diseases, such as tuberculosis and pneumonia

Detox Program Treatment Centers

There are a ton of drug rehab and detox facilities located in Yavapai County that are worth considering. After your assessment at one of these venters, you will be on the right track to your detox and recovery in Yavapai County. Detox and withdrawals affect everyone differently. This is why it is best to find the right drug rehab and detox program and undergo professional care, this allows a safe place for you to detox, because you will be in a controlled environment.

You’ll find a number of a number of forms of detox, such as heroin detox programs in Yavapai County, alcohol detox programs in Yavapai County, and opiate detox programs in Yavapai County.  The first step in recovery is the detox process. It is vital to choose a safe, and supervised drug or alcohol detox center.

Why Choose a Heroin Detox Program In Yavapai County?

Users that wish to find a heroin detox in Yavapai County can get the help they need at a qualified treatment center. Users can detox safely at a specialized facility in Yavapai County Az, supervised by medical professionals, and have a specially designed follow-up plan which can include a period of comprehensive therapy.

Yavapai County holds Residential inpatient treatment that offers around the clock care. There are even outpatient treatment programs located within Yavapai County that offer flexible treatment programs to individuals who cannot stay in a live-in facility. This would be great for people can’t interrupt their regular lives because of work or school. In a program like this, participants usually meet a weekly, a couple of times a week.

There are also some programs available for treatment and detox in Yavapai County, AZ that offer a combination of in and outpatient services: there’s an inpatient portion for everything that requires medical supervision or partial hospitalization, and then there are intensive outpatient treatments which include outpatient clinic follow-up.

Getting Help

If you or someone you know is experiencing addiction, please call us at (928) 756-0694 or contact us here. Looking for heroin detox in Yavapai County may be easier than you think. Contacting us is the first step towards a life free from addiction!


Alcohol Detoxification

What to Expect Going Through Alcohol Detox in Yavapai County, AZ

Alcohol Use Disorder

Doctors are always coming up with new names for one thing or the other. What we grew up calling alcoholism, some call alcohol addiction. Now, the proper term when addressing alcoholism is Alcohol Use Disorder. People often search for different treatment options for AUD, let’s discuss alcohol detox in Yavapai County, AZ.

Risky behavior such as drinking too much alcohol can be an indicator of a medical condition now known as alcohol use disorder. It is a chronic disease that changes your brain. There are approximately 16 million people residing in the U.S. that have been documented to have this disorder.

Alcohol can be consumed responsibly and leave mild effects. Becoming educated on the facts about alcohol can help you drink responsibly.

Quick Facts About Alcohol:

  • Over 216 million Americans have at least experimented or tried alcohol.
  • Around 28 % of all road or traffic accidents resulting in loss of life involve alcohol.
  • 1 standard-sized drink can remain in your bloodstream for around an hour.
  • Drinking alcohol is more popular than using tobacco, marijuana or any illicit drug. Around a fourth of Americans use alcohol for the first time before the age of 18.
  • 136.7 million people ages 12 + drink alcohol in the US.
  • 2.3 million adolescences ages 12 to 17 consume alcohol.
  • 65.3 million Americans 12 + also binge drink.
  • How Many People Experience Alcoholism?

Alcohol addiction holds a spot for being one of the most common kinds of substance abuse in the US. The proper name or medical term for addiction is Substance use disorder, so alcohol use disorder means alcoholism. Alcohol use disorder affects approximately five percent of Americans every year.

Alcoholics cannot be defined by the number of drinks they consume every day. Medical specialists diagnose this condition with criteria that measure behavioral and physical changes that alcohol causes. There are some kinds of alcoholics who consume over 12 beers daily, and then there are some people that can consume that much without ever developing an alcohol addiction or use disorder.

The majority of alcoholics die due to long-term health complications caused by abusing alcohol, complications like heart problems, liver disease or cancer.

Alcohol Withdrawal Timeline of Symptoms

During detox, you will experience what’s called alcohol withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms can transpire as soon as 2 hrs after your last alcoholic beverage. Normally, symptoms peak around the first 24 – 48 hours. It’s during this time that you will experience uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms include:

  • Tremors
  • Sweating
  • Insomnia
  • Fever
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Changes in blood pressure

Some people may only experience only a few withdrawal symptoms. But other abusers might suffer symptoms on a more severe side of the scale. One example is that you could experience something called delirium tremens. This is one of the most severe alcohol withdrawal symptoms.

Long-term effects include:

  • High blood pressure
  • Cirrhosis
  • Pancreatitis
  • Stomach problems
  • Cancer
  • Heart problems
  • Permanent memory loss
  • Brain damage

When abusing alcohol your risks increase of:

  • Drowning
  • Homicide
  • Suicide
  • Car accidents

AUD can affect the people around you, too. Your drinking disorder will more than likely damage relationships with family, friends and loved ones due to lashing out, neglect, violence, and abuse. Pregnant women are risk experiencing a miscarriage. If a woman carries to term, the baby will probably have fetal alcohol syndrome and an increased risk of dying due to SIDS.

Alcohol is quite literally one of the most popularly consumed substances worldwide. For this reason, it’s also often abused. Luckily, there are facilities out there that help people get sober and stay sober. But one of the things you encounter on the long road to recovery is first going through detox. Detoxification from alcohol or any substance isn’t pleasant but needed.

Why Should You Get Treatment in Yavapai County?

Yavapai County, AZ is home to quite a number of alcohol rehab and detox centers. With the spike in addiction cases over the years, more facilities and organizations have risen up in an effort to fight against this disease.

There are two main types of treatment centers out there.

Inpatient or Residential treatment within Yavapai County, AZ involves 24-hr medically supervised care while in a live-in facility. All treatment services, as well as behavioral therapy and medical, are included at this one location.

Outpatient treatment programs in Yavapai County, AZ offer flexibility in treatment. This is helpful for people who are not able to stop their regular lives, due to something school or work-related. Outpatient treatment may require meeting at the clinic a few times each week. These meetings typically last a couple of hours at a time.

There are also programs available in Yavapai County, AZ that offer sort of a combination of these two approaches: they have the Inpatient aspect available for medical, or partial hospitalization if needed, and then more rigorous outpatient programs involving follow-up at outpatient clinics.

Life After Detox

Going through a treatment program and successfully detoxing should make anyone proud. However, it’s not the end of the battle. In fact, detox is just the first step. Next, you will have to stay sober and on your road to recovery. Here is where counseling and therapy come into play. You will be taught the skills, tactics, and techniques to avoid triggers and sidestep relapse.

That’s why finding the right program and facility is vital. It should be well rounded and offer the education you need to stay safe, clean and sober. Yavapai County has a lot to offer when you’re looking to turn your alcohol use disorder around and experience a life of recovery. Contact us today to learn more!

Addiction Treatment Facility in Arizona

Why Choose an Addiction Treatment Facility in Arizona

If you are seeking an addiction treatment facility in Arizona, then there are plenty of options to consider.  Most of them are located in Phoenix and Tucson, but you can find others in smaller cities.  Our facility, Granite Mountain Behavioral Healthcare, is located in Prescott Valley.

One of the steps in choosing the right addiction treatment facility is picking your location.  Deciding on whether you want to be close home or further away during your recovery is important because environmental settings can play a key role in your success.  Choosing the right addiction treatment facility is about more than just location.  You also need to find programs that are customized to individual needs that are more effective in treating the issues that lead to a person’s addiction.

Addiction in Arizona

In recent years, Arizona has had some success in its battle against substance abuse.  It still has high rates of prescription drug abuse and illicit drug abuse, especially among the state’s youth.  There many treatment centers available in the state to help fight this battle.  Arizona has an estimated 341 treatment facilities, 31 of which that offer opioid treatment programs.  There are also special programs that are available for men, women, and people who suffer from co-occurring mental health disorders, adolescents, and those who have experienced trauma.

Choosing Your Treatment and Financing Your Recovery

There are inpatient and outpatient programs available for addiction recovery.  Patients participating in inpatient treatment will reside at the recovery facility 24 hours a day.  This will allow them to maintain focus on their treatment and recovery efforts.  Outpatient programs traditionally offer the same kinds of treatment as inpatient programs, but in outpatient programs, the patient lives at home and commits to a certain number of hours per week, where they will participate in treatment.

Many people that are battling with an addiction may not have the finances or resources to stay at an addiction recovery facility for long periods.  If you are trying to determine the price of rehabilitation in Arizona, you can look at this expense in your recovery, health, and well-being.  You can find both residential and outpatient programs in Arizona.  When looking at addiction recovery centers in Arizona, you will find that there are different financial options available to you.  Some of them will accept private insurance and military insurance.  Other facilities are state-financed or have payment assistance plans for those who need it.

The state of Arizona has over 25 different drug and alcohol detox facilities Each one can help patients get through painful withdrawals when overcoming addiction.  Their services include medical and traditional detox.

Treatment centers in Arizona can help patients with different types of addiction, including substance abuse issues and drug abuse.  They generally offer 30-day programs or more extended programs that can last 60 to 90 days.

Beginning Treatment With Detoxification

Whether your addiction is drug or alcohol-related, your first step in treatment is to detox.  The recovery centers will have medical professionals on hand to monitor you during this phase and make sure you are safe.  The next step after detox is to begin therapy, whether in an individual or group setting.  The majority of the treatment centers in Arizona for alcohol and drug abuse focus on this step as the start to a patient’s path to full recovery.

The best treatment centers in Arizona will help you set a management and success plan for after you leave the facility.  This can include group support like alcoholics anonymous or engaging with your inner circle of family and friends.  This type of ongoing treatment or support plan is to help you to stay substance-free.

Treatment at Granite Mountain Behavioral Healthcare

Long-term treatment is seen as the ideal approach for a successful recovery. But Granite Mountain Behavioral Healthcare understands that there can be financial and environmental obstacles that can make this difficult.  Each of our clients’ treatment plans is created with this in mind.

Once you arrive at our facility, you will see that we have a welcoming community environment where everyone is important and equally valued.  We offer treatment in three phases:

  • Phase I: Acceptance, Belonging, Community
  • Phase II: Enrollment, Commitment, Connection
  • Phase III: Reconstruction, Reintegration, Transformation

The first phase includes group and individual therapy sessions in varied environmental settings; community-based, supervised, nature immersion programming; and psychiatric evaluation on an as-needed basis.

In Phase II, you can expect ongoing clinical assessment; employment coaching and job acquisition; and volunteerism support and experience.

In Phase III, you will experience community leadership and mentorship; continued practice managing privileges and unsupervised time; and a 12-step involvement.

You can learn more about our recovery programs by contacting us today.  You or your loved one can also contact our facility and speak with one of our specialists today at 1-877-389-0412 about customizing the right treatment plan for you.


Drug Rehab in Prescott Valley, Arizona

Deciding to seek help in a drug rehabilitation center is the first step on you or your loved one’s path to freedom.  Being drug-free and no longer dependent on a substance to make you feel normal or cope with life, the ultimate goal, and one that is achievable.  There are many rehabilitation centers in Arizona.  We at Granite Mountain Behavioral Healthcare are located in Prescott Valley.  Our specialists can help match you with the right treatment for your needs.

Choosing the Right Treatment

One of the first things you will need to decide when choosing treatment is if inpatient or outpatient services would work for you.  Educating yourself about these kinds of addiction treatment facilities help make your choice to enter and transition into rehab a lot easier.

Here are a few things to consider when choosing your rehab facility:

  • Location – Choosing your location will depend on whether you want a facility that is close to home or if you prefer to be further away.
  • Length of Stay – Typical program lengths start at 30 days but can last up to 90 days or more.
  • Professionalism – It is essential to check a center’s accreditation and certifications.
  • Treatment Options – Based on your needs, check on how the facility approaches treatment, and ask as many questions as you need.
  • Specialties and Additional Treatments – Research on any areas of specialty that the facility is known for and any additional treatment options that may be available.

When looking at going into a rehab program, the two main options are inpatient and outpatient.

Inpatient, or residential addiction treatment facilities, provide immersive substance use treatment.  Patients stay on-site 24 hours a day.  During their residency, they can maintain focus on their recovery.  Inpatient treatment is effective for different patients for multiple reasons, but it is typically used by those who are battling severe addictions and addiction-related issues.

The first phase of inpatient rehab involves a period of detoxification.  When a person has been abusing a drug and developed a dependency, they will experience a period of withdrawal symptoms during the detox process.  In some cases, acute withdrawal syndrome can be severe and even life-threatening.  In these circumstances, medically supervised detox in a professional facility provides the patient with a safe and comfortable environment during recovery.  Once the withdrawal process is under control during the detox phase, therapeutic efforts to address the deeper cause and maladaptive behaviors are used to identify the reason for the compulsive misuse of drugs.  This process makes up the bulk of inpatient or residential rehab.  In most cases, the recovery phase will involve a variety of treatment methods, such as counseling sessions, peer support, and if needed, medical care.  Treatment is also adjusted depending on the needs of the patient.

Treatment of psychological addiction to drugs is usually done in the second phase of the inpatient rehabilitation process.  This second part of treatment is crucial, because when a person starts to abuse a drug, not only does the physical body become addicted, but so does the mind.  Treating psychological struggles with addiction are just as important as addressing the physical symptoms.

If staying at a drug rehab center is not for you, then, there are outpatient treatment options available.  With outpatient services, you can live at home while attending substance abuse treatment sessions for several days a week at the rehabilitation facility.

Outpatient rehab programs are similar to inpatient rehab services in that there are different types of treatment depending on the types and intensity of services available.  Outpatient treatment programs can vary in length.  Some intensive outpatient programs can require a minimum of 9 hours and up to 20 hours of participation in treatment per week.  Patients can take part in this type of program for two months and up to one year if needed.  Matching the patient with the right treatment program will depend on the level of severity of the addiction, the length of time they have been using the drug, and their health and life commitments.

Individuals enrolled in outpatient programs will also have the options of individual and group therapy, support groups, medication treatments, and workshops on life-coping skills.

Ongoing Treatment

Completing your initial rehabilitation phase is just part of the recovery process.  Depending on your level of addiction and particular needs, you may also need to look at extended care and possibly long-term rehab.

Patients that seek support for lifelong sobriety will choose one of these options.  When looking at ongoing care, you can also choose between inpatient residential programs and outpatient programs.

There are also options for people who may not be ready to return home once they complete rehab.  Sober-living homes can provide living arrangements during an individual’s extended care process.  This works as a transitional period and atmosphere until a person is ready to go back into society.

Long-term rehabilitation is the same as inpatient rehab, but for a more extended period, that can range from 6 to 12 months.  This type of rehabilitation is helpful for individuals that are severely addicted or may be at risk for chronic relapse.

Patients in formal treatment programs benefit from learning better habits and new ways of thinking and behaving.  Individuals become more aware of their past mistakes and the behavior that led them to drug abuse.  Having this perception and knowledge can help them to fight future urges to relapse and slip back into a drug-dependent lifestyle.

Treatment at Granite Mountain Behavioral Healthcare

Long-term treatment is seen as the ideal approach for continuous successful recovery, but Granite Mountain Behavioral Healthcare understands that there can be financial and environmental obstacles that can make this difficult.  Each of our clients’ treatment plans is created with this in mind.

Once you arrive at our facility, you will see that we have a welcoming community environment where everyone is important and equally valued.  We offer treatment in three phases:

  • Phase I: Acceptance, Belonging, Community
  • Phase II: Enrollment, Commitment, Connection
  • Phase III: Reconstruction, Reintegration, Transformation

Phase I includes group and individual therapy sessions in varied environmental settings; community-based, supervised, nature immersion programming; and psychiatric evaluation on an as-needed basis.

In Phase II, you can expect ongoing clinical assessment; employment coaching and job acquisition; and volunteerism support and experience.

In Phase III, you will experience community leadership and mentorship; continued practice managing privileges and unsupervised time; and a 12-step involvement.

You can learn more about our recovery programs on our website.  You or loved one can also contact our facility and speak with one of our specialists today at 1-877-389-0412 about customizing the right treatment plan for you.

Heroin addiction prescott valley

Heroin Addiction in Prescott Valley, Arizona

The use of heroin has become more widely used, doubling between 2007 and 2012.  The effects of this drug are dangerous and can be deadly.  It is highly addictive, even if you try it only once or twice.  If you or your loved one is dealing with a heroin addiction, you do not have to fight it alone.  Our specialists at Granite Mountain Behavioral Healthcare are right here in Prescott Valley, Arizona, and can help you win this battle.

Heroin Use

The three ways that heroin is used are:

  • Smoking
  • Snorting
  • Injecting

Most heroin users prefer the latter method of injecting because it gets them the quickest high. It is also the most dangerous method.  By injecting, you can overdose more quickly, but also be at risk of becoming infected by a contaminated needle.

Background on Heroin

Heroin originated in Mexico, Asia, and South America from a flower, the opium poppy.  It can come in the form of white or brown powder, or black tar.  In the early 1800s, French pharmacist, Friedrich Serturner discovered how to isolate morphine, one of opium’s active ingredients.

Morphine was widely used to treat pain and cure opium addiction before the discovery of its addictive properties.  Morphine was used in the United States during the American Civil War to manage pain from battle wounds.  In 1874, an English chemist, Charles Romney Alder Wright experimented with mixing morphine with different acids.  He is credited for inventing a new chemical called diacetylmorphine, or diamorphine, which is heroin.  It was similar in structure to morphine but was two to three times stronger.  Heroin is created when reacting morphine with other acids.  To put it simply, heroin is morphine with a small chemical compound added to it.

Heroin was not always known as the street drug as it is today.  Its name was first used by the pharmaceutical company, Bayer, as a brand name in 1898.  People reported having a heroic feeling after using the substance.  Bayer marketed the drug in the United States as a non-addictive pain medication. Up until the 1920s, it was prescribed to adults and children as cold medicine and for other pains.  Heroin use and misuse rose rapidly during the decades of its legal use.  The addictive substance became illegal in 1924 and is still illegal to this day.

Why Is Heroin Addictive

Heroin users take this drug for the rush of good feelings and happiness that it gives them right after taking it.  Then, for several hours after, your world begins to slow down.  Your thinking process is slower and your actions, such as walking slow down as well.  Users report that they feel like they are in a dream, protected by a blanket without worries.

That dream-like state and freedom of worries can be extremely addictive to anyone who is attempting to escape or treat anxiety and other stressors. Heroin can be uniquely addictive to individuals who have mental health issues.  An Illinois study found that 75% of users suffered from mental health conditions such as depression, ADHD, or bipolar disorder.

Effects of Heroin


After smoking, snorting, or injecting heroin, it enters the brain and is then converted to morphine and binds rapidly to opioid receptors.  As mentioned earlier, users will get a surge of pleasurable sensation, like a rush.  This feeling is followed by a warm flushing of the skin, dry mouth, and a heavy feeling in the extremities.  Heroin users may also experience nausea, vomiting, and severe itching.  Once the initial effects start to wear off, users will become drowsy for several hours, experiencing cloudy mental function, slower heart rate, and life-threatening slowed breathing.  When breathing is slowed down, users risk slipping into a coma and suffering from permanent brain damage or even death after an overdose.


Repeated heroin use can alter the physical structure and physiology of the brain, resulting in long-term imbalances in neuronal and hormonal systems that are not easily reversed.  Users risk deterioration of white matter in the brain that can affect a person’s ability to make decisions, regulate behavior, and respond to stressful situations.  Tolerance is another long-term effect when more and more of the drug is required to get the same results.  Heroin produces significant degrees of tolerance and physical dependence.  Physical dependence means that the body is accustomed to the presence of the drug, and withdrawal symptoms occur when use is drastically reduced.

Heroin withdrawal can occur shortly after the last use, often within a few hours.  Some withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Restlessness
  • Muscle and Bone Pain
  • Insomnia
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Cold Flashes with Goose Bumps
  • Leg Movements

During the first 24-48 hours is when significant withdrawal symptoms occur, but usually, subside after about a week.  In some cases, withdrawal signs can last for many months.

Heroin Use Disorder is also an effect of heroin use.  It is defined as a chronic relapsing disease that goes beyond physical dependence and is identified by uncontrollable drug-seeking without regard for the consequences.  Once a person develops a heroin use disorder, seeking and using the drug becomes their primary purpose in life.

Changing Your Focus to Fight the Addiction

Heroin addiction is lethal, but there are a variety of treatments that can help you overcome your heroin use disorder.  Two types of effective therapies are behavioral and pharmacological.  Either one of these treatments assists with restoring a degree of normalcy to brain function and behavior, resulting in increased employment rates and a lower risk of contracting HIV and other diseases and criminal behavior.  Research shows that in many cases, the integration of both of these treatments is the most effective approach.

If you or a loved one are struggling with a heroin addiction, your focus does not have to be on getting your next high, but on ending this vicious cycle of addiction.  Contact one of our Granite Mountain Behavioral Healthcare specialists today at (928) 756-0694 or online by clicking here.


addiction treatment in Arizona

Getting Help: A Guide for Addiction Treatment and Recovery in Arizona

Picking The Right Solution

So you’ve decided that you are going to get help and are going to look for addiction rehab in Arizona. This is great, and it’s already the first step towards recovery. Therefore, your journey has already begun, since you know where you’d like to get treatment. However, before actually picking out a facility, it is important to know your options to decide which best applies to your situation.

Researching all of your options is very important, and you can’t just go with the first one you see. Every rehab center’s webpage is made to make their facilities look perfect, so of course, the first one you read about will look like the right fit for you. However, it is vital to compare centers and programs. Recent studies show that as many as 85% of users relapse within the first year after treatment, and a lot of times, that might have something to do with picking the wrong addiction rehab or program.

Furthermore, when it comes to heroin addiction, around 90% of users relapse, according to several studies in different countries. Considering the opiate epidemic and how often addiction rehabs in Arizona take in people struggling with heroin addiction, if you fit this profile, you should be extra careful to make sure you are picking the right option. Nonetheless, it is also important to keep in mind that relapsing is nothing to be ashamed about, especially considering how frequent it is – but it is something that is best to avoid.

The point is not to pick whatever program is most convenient, but to pick what will guarantee that you will be part of the group that stays sober. Getting through the first year is especially important since only half of the users tend to relapse by then. It is not about immediate help, it’s about thinking of long-term solutions because recovery takes time.

What Should You Know About Programs

As you look up your options, a few factors will differentiate each program. First, you must know what service setting is best for you. This requires deciding whether you’d need an inpatient program or an outpatient program, meaning if you’d stay in the facilities 24/7 or if you’d go only during treatment and appointment hours. There are different types of “intensities” for both of these alternatives, but this would be the first factor to consider amongst them.

Secondly, the length of treatment is another issue at hand. There are short-term programs that can be as quick as a month-long plan, or longer-term ones, which can last months, up to even 120+ days. It is important to discuss this with your health care provider and not just decide on your own which would be more appropriate for you.

Finally, you will also need to find out which “approach” can work best for your lifestyle, beliefs, and needs. What kind of therapy needs to be applied for your scenario? Would you prefer a holistic method? What type of counseling would you need? This would all depend on the factors mentioned before, as well as how into your addiction you have fallen and what your diagnosis is. Dual-diagnosis patients, for instance, would need an approach that is different than a detox patient. A lot of the user’s way of living comes into play when it comes to picking an addiction rehab and treatment, so make sure to take that into account as well when speaking to your health care provider.

Affording Addiction Rehab in Arizona

A final step is a topic that might sometimes feel like an obstacle between the user and the help they need, which is pricing. Paying for treatment can be more expensive than some can afford. However, most times, people just don’t know their options well enough and end up getting stuck on that detail when they could find a way to afford many programs in addiction rehabs in Arizona.

Step one would be to see which programs your healthcare plan can cover – and there are many.  Any mental and behavioral services are classified as essential health benefits, and therefore must be covered by insurance. If you are in Arizona, addiction rehabs can be paid for through state, federal, or private marketplace insurance plans. You can also use Medicaid should you qualify for it, but you need to know their conditions to cover treatment since it doesn’t cover every option.

If neither of those applies to your case, there are still options. Paying out of pocket is not impossible even if you do not make a lot of money – using credit cards, payment plans, or researching for sliding scale treatments can all make the damage to your bank account much smaller. Other than that, there are addiction rehab grants or scholarships that aid patients financially, or just getting the usual loan, as long as you are sure to go with the one you can actually afford.

No Excuses For Getting The Help You Need

Deciding to get help is important, but you need to take action to make it count. There are plenty of options for addiction rehab plans and facilities in Arizona for everyone and for every case scenario. As long as you follow these steps and keep them in mind as you make your decision, there is no reason to postpone your plans.

At Granite Mountain Behavioural Healthcare, we are hoping to help you no matter what your addiction is and how intense it has become. We can help you with information regarding payments, programs, therapy, and guide you through the process, so you can count on us. Visit our website and find all our contact information to schedule an appointment today.

We believe in empowering and in long-term solutions, so you won’t just overcome your addiction, but you will actually leave it behind you for good. 


alcohol detox in arizona

Alcohol Detox in Arizona

If you have decided to put down that drink and get clean, you have taken a crucial step on your path to sobriety.  Granite Mountain Behavioral Healthcare in Prescott Valley, Arizona, is here to walk with you on that journey to clean living and freedom from alcohol dependency.

How Long Does It Take to Detox

The process of ridding the body of toxins, such as alcohol, is called detox.  For people with mild to moderate alcoholism, the detoxification process typically starts within eight hours after the last drink but can last up to seven days.  For those battling severe addiction, withdrawal can last for two weeks or more.

The length of alcohol detox depends on many factors, including the severity of the individual’s alcoholism.  The more severe the alcohol use disorder, the longer the detox process will take.

Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms

When you are going through detox from alcohol abuse, withdrawal symptoms are expected, and you should be prepared for them.  Withdrawal symptoms happen when a person has been drinking too much alcohol regularly and then suddenly stops.  Alcohol withdrawal happens more in adults but can occur in teenagers or children.  If you have existing medical conditions, this can cause the withdrawal symptoms to be more severe.

Symptoms can occur as soon as 8 hours after the last drink but can appear days later.  They usually peak during the first 24 to 72 hours but can last for weeks.

Some of the more common withdrawal symptoms are:

  • Anxiety ( nervousness)
  • Depression
  • Fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Jumpiness ( Shakiness)
  • Mood Swings
  • Nightmares
  • Not thinking clearly

Some other symptoms you may experience are:

  • Sweating ( clammy skin)
  • Enlarged (dilated) pupils
  • Headache
  • Insomnia
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Pallor
  • Rapid Heart Rate
  • Tremor of the hands or other body parts

A more severe form of alcohol withdrawal is called, delirium tremens.  It occurs in about 5% or 1 out of every 20 people that experience withdrawal symptoms.  In delirium tremens, the brain has difficulty readjusting its chemistry after alcohol is stopped.  This results in a state of temporary confusion and leads to dangerous changes in the way the brain regulates circulation and breathing.  Vital signs, such as heart rate or blood pressure, can change unexpectedly, creating a risk of heart attack, stroke, or death.  Symptoms of delirium tremens are:

  • Agitation
  • Fever
  • Hallucinations
  • Seizures
  • Severe Confusion


There are no specific tests that are used to diagnose alcohol withdrawal.   The evidence of withdrawal symptoms after heavy habitual drinking has been stopped is easy to identify.  Individuals that have a history of withdrawal symptoms, then you are likely to experience them again if you began drinking heavily again and stopped.

If you are experiencing withdrawal symptoms from alcohol abuse, then you may have also caused damaged to other organs.  You should schedule an appointment with your doctor to do blood tests and check for alcohol-related damage to your liver, heart, the nerves in your feet, blood cell counts, and gastrointestinal tract. Poor nutrition is typical in an individual with alcohol dependence, so your doctor will probably check your diet and any vitamin deficiencies.  Supplements, a healthy diet, and a regular sleep schedule may improve withdrawal side effects and help the body heal faster.

Being honest about how much alcohol you have been consuming can be hard when battling alcoholism, but it is crucial in getting the right treatment for your withdrawal symptoms.

Treatment Options

Depending on the severity of your alcohol dependency and withdrawal symptoms, some treatment options are:

  • Medical Detox
  • Weaning ( Alcohol Use Reduction)
  • Hospital Treatment
  • Group and Individual Therapy Sessions

Monitoring and controlling the physical symptoms to reach a stable point is usually the first step in the detoxification process.  Medical detox is often used to accomplish this.  It uses medications to treat symptoms such as nausea, dehydration, seizures, and insomnia.

Sometimes alcohol use is slowly reduced over a period of time through a detailed tapering schedule that should be set up and supervised by your doctor or another medical professional.  In this method, the patient is weaned off of alcohol in a controlled manner to avoid more severe withdrawal side effects.  Your doctor may also go over medications that can help to lessen alcohol withdrawal symptoms.

As previously stated, alcohol abusers tend to have a shortage of several vitamins and minerals.  Nutritional supplements can help with this deficiency.

If you are experiencing severe symptoms such as vomiting, seizures, or delirium tremens, you should look into hospital treatment.  Treatment in an intensive care unit (ICU) may is often required for delirium tremens, because your heart rate, blood pressure, and breathing need to be monitored closely.

The physical symptoms of alcohol withdrawal are just part of the detoxification process. You may also experience the more emotional side effects of withdrawal.  Medications, coupled with therapy and counseling sessions, are used to treat anxiety, depression, and potential suicidal ideation.  One of the main goals of any alcohol detox center is to prevent relapse.  Group sessions like 12-step groups and individual therapy can serve as continued support through this stage and beyond.

Seeking Help

Arizona has rehabilitation centers and clinics for alcohol detox right at your fingertips.

All you have to do is click here to start your search for alcohol recovery.  Remember that being honest about your alcohol consumption and the severity of your symptoms is key in getting the right treatment for your condition.  We have specialists at Granite Mountain Behavioral Healthcare that can talk to you or your loved one through this process and get you started on your way to clean living.  Contact us today by calling (928) 756-0694 to learn more.