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Cold Medicine Addiction and Rehab in Washington State: Just the Facts

There are a number of people in Washington State who are addicted to cold medicine. Many of these individuals would never dream of needing to go to rehab for this problem. In fact, a lot of them probably don't even see it as a serious issue in their lives. The fact is that cold medicine addiction is a problem. It's not something to be ignored because it can cause a great deal of damage.

Millions of people around the United States take cough and cold medicine every year. They get colds, or they start to feel one coming on, and it's an easy fix for them.

This medication can be very effective when it is taken as directed. However, it should not be taken for a long period of time. It contains some ingredients that can quickly lead to addiction when it is misused.

People tend to believe that cold medicine is safe because it's available over the counter. The fact is that this can make it even more dangerous than street drugs. You might be facing a situation right now that involves a cold medicine addiction. Or, you may think you're addicted to cold medicine, but you're not sure.

Here at Northpoint Recovery, we know it's important for you to have the facts about this type of addiction. Without the right information, you're not able to secure the help you need. If you do have a cold medicine addiction, and you're in Washington, help for recovery is available to you.

Let's take a few moments and go over the facts about cold medicine addiction.

Washington Cold Medicine Rehab Information

Fact: Teens are Most Likely to be Addicted to Cold Medicine

Unfortunately, the use of over the counter drugs is a growing trend among teenagers. That doesn't mean that adults are not susceptible to this type of addiction. However, because of the availability of OTC medicines like cold medicine, teens are more likely to choose them.

The statistics regarding OTC drugs and cold medicine use among teens are quite surprising. According to TeenHelp.com:

  • Most teens don't realize they are doing anything dangerous at all when using cold medicine in appropriately.
  • 56% of teenagers feel that obtaining OTC drugs is much easier than obtaining illegal drugs.
  • The Internet is filled with information about getting high on cold medicine. This fact makes obtaining them and abusing them even easier for teens.
  • 40% of teens feel that OTC medications are much safer than illegal drugs.
  • 31% of teenagers believe that using OTC drugs to get high is OK once in a while.
  • 55% of teens feel that there are no risks to using cold medicine to get high.
  • 10% of teenagers report having used cold medicine to get high.

Perhaps you're a parent, and you suspect that you have a child who is abusing cold medicine. These statistics might make you shudder, and rightly so. However, it's so important to be aware of how dangerous these drugs really are.

Fact: Cold Medicine Has a Dramatic Effect on the Body and Brain

DXM is the active ingredient in cough and cold medicines that causes addictions. This ingredient is helpful in small doses. However, in higher doses, it is very dangerous. People who use it usually don't realize how addictive it is. They also don't realize that in order to stop using it, DXM treatment is highly recommended.

The effects of cold medicine on the brain and body cannot be denied. It's clear that these drugs are dangerous when you consider these effects.

DXM actually acts on the same brain receptors as ketamine or PCP affect. One high dose of it can lead to hallucinations. When someone uses DXM, they find that they have a dissociative experience. This means that they feel separated from their bodies or their environment. The drug can also affect the way people think or feel.

Dopamine levels are also increased when using DXM. Increased dopamine levels mean increased pleasure. This is one of the reasons people continue to use the drug. As they continue to seek after that pleasurable high, it isn't long before addiction sets in.

Continuing to use cold medicines for a prolonged period of time can lead to a number of physical consequences. Some of these include:

  • Experiencing a loss of coordination
  • Numbness throughout the body
  • An increase in blood pressure
  • A faster heart rate
  • An upset stomach

If DXM is mixed with other substances, even worse consequences can result. For example, when mixed with decongestants, it can lead to brain damage. When mixed with alcohol or other drugs, serious medical complications can result.

Fact: Parents Should be Talking with Their Kids About Cold Medicine Addiction

If you're a parent, you might be dreading having a conversation with your child about cold medicine abuse. These types of conversations are never easy ones to have. However, considering how many teens are starting to abuse these drugs, it's necessary to do it.

Some of the key points that you will want to cover with your child include:

  • Going over the risks involved with using cold medicine to get high.
  • Talking about the statistics with your child.
  • Recognizing the difficulty of dealing with peer pressure to use OTC drugs.
  • Talking about other ways to solve problems, rather than getting high.
  • Creating an open door policy for your child if he or she feels an urge to start using.

As a parent, you want to also be looking for any signs of cold medicine abuse or addiction. For example:

  • Keep track of how much cold medicine is in your house at all times.
  • Read medicine labels and try to avoid ones with DXM as an ingredient.
  • Resist the urge to buy these medications in bulk to keep your home stocked up.
  • Monitor your child's use of electronics to look for any signs of abuse.
  • Check your child's pockets on laundry day to be sure there are no signs of cold medicine abuse.

Fact: There are Many Resources for Cold Medicine Addiction in WA

If you or your child does have an addiction to cold medicine, there are resources available for you. It's so important to not ignore this situation. Doing so can result in dire consequences for yourself or your teen.

Narcotics Anonymous is a support group that offers meetings all over the country. These support groups are specifically for people who are addicted to drugs. They can be a valuable resource for you during this time.

Talking with a therapist who specializes in addiction can also be very helpful. You can find one local to you in Washington State. Therapists are trained to help understand the root cause of addictions.

Finally, going to a cold medicine rehab facility is the best way to treat an addiction.

Fact: Going to Cold Medicine Treatment in Washington State is the Best Way to Recover

To some, it seems silly to think that an OTC drug could require drug rehab. Even so, this addiction is serious. It requires a serious approach if one is going to recover successfully.

Cold medicine treatment has so many benefits. These include:

  • Keeping the addict on track with recovery, with less chance of a relapse.
  • Addressing the withdrawal symptoms that can accompany cold medicine cessation.
  • Providing unconditional support throughout every step of the recovery process.
  • Introducing patients to others who are suffering from the same addictions.
  • Getting to the root cause of the addiction so that real healing can take place.

People who choose to get professional help are much more likely to avoid relapsing. A cold medicine addiction should always be taken seriously. This is a real addiction with real risks.

Fact: Not Getting Help for a Cold Medicine Addiction is Risky

Because of the fact that cold medicine is an OTC drug, people often avoid going to rehab for help. They usually tell themselves that going to treatment is silly. They believe they can just quit on their own, cold turkey, without a problem.

Most of the time, these individuals are wrong. Cold medicine withdrawal symptoms are serious, and they can easily cause someone to go back to using. When people attempt to stop using cold medicine on their own, they're likely to experience:

  • Problems with sleeping at night
  • Cold and hot flashes
  • Feeling very restless
  • Digestive problems, such as diarrhea
  • An upset stomach with nausea and vomiting
  • Intense body aches

These withdrawal symptoms usually start off mild, and then they increase in their intensity. They may peak at around the third to fifth day after the quit. However, it is possible for them to last longer. They can even return strongly a few weeks afterwards.

The safest way to stop using cold medicine is through a cold medicine addiction treatment program. Professional facilities are equipped to help patients with this type of addiction.

Fact: Northpoint Recovery Offers Rehab for Cold Medicine in WA State

It's possible that you started using cold medicine because you knew it was an easy way to get high. If that's the case, you're not alone. Many people begin using it for the same reason. It's easy to obtain, relatively cheap to purchase, and produces results. However, you weren't counting on the possibility of becoming addicted to it. Now that you are, you're not sure where to turn or what to do.

At Northpoint Recovery, we offer cold medicine rehab that can help you. It's so important to get to the reasons behind your addiction. It's only when you're able to do that, that you'll find recovery to be a possibility.

Stopping your use of cold medicine on your own is not a good idea. Doing so can result in a number of different health problems for you. Even though cold medicine is an OTC drug, that doesn't make it safer than other drugs.

Choosing to get professional help for your addiction is the best course of action for you to take. It will provide you with the support you need to recover successfully. It will also educate you on the best ways to avoid relapsing in the future.

Would you like more information on cold medicine rehab in Washington? Are you ready to take the steps to recover right now? We can help you get started. Please contact us.