Anxiety and Substance Abuse Treatment in Colorado
While many issues and dilemmas currently plague the United States, it is believed that anxiety and substance abuse ranks high among the most damaging problems the country has ever faced.
The National Center for Drug Abuse Statistics (NCDAS) revealed that practically half of every living American aged 12 and older has used illicit drugs at least once. Add to this the fact that the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA) shared data pointing out that in 2020, anxiety affected 40 million Americans.
What is Addiction?
An addiction is defined as a chronic neurological dysfunction that involves reward, motivation, and memory that affects the way a person’s body craves a substance or engages in a particular behavior. This is particularly true if the addiction involves a compulsive or obsessive pursuit of “reward” and if the person displays a lack of concern over the possible consequences of the pursuit.
An addiction is distinct from simply just being a strong preference or a favorite as someone with an addiction could completely be unable to stay away from whatever it is they have an addiction to, such as a substance or a particular behavior. Someone with addiction also typically displays a lack of emotional response to criticisms about their behavior or even dismisses the possibility of problems caused by their addiction.
These behavioral changes are primarily brought about by the fact that addiction has a strong connection to neurological function. The person will experience immense cravings and urges to fulfill their addiction needs, and in most cases, will do anything just to fill that need, regardless of the consequences. These individuals will need drug addiction treatment in colorado to break the cycle of addiction.
Anxiety disorders are a grouping of mental disorders typically characterized by significant and uncontrollable feelings of anxiety and fear. It could be so severe that it could significantly impair a person’s social, occupational, and normal personal functions. This is differentiated from base anxiety, as anxiety is a normal human reaction to certain situations which come with a measure of stress, and will typically end when the stressful situation or event is done.
An anxiety disorder will typically override a person’s ability to effectively manage his or her reaction to certain stimuli, and instead, fill them with a significant amount of fear and dread. The fear and dread could be so severe that a person could not make any sense of the situation, resulting in them either overreacting to the situation or simply reacting blindly without thinking.
What are the Types of Anxiety Disorders?
Anxiety disorders span a range of different forms of anxiety-related conditions, most of which are generally characterized by excessive fear, severe discomfort, and unmanageable stress responses.
Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) is a mental health disorder that is marked by emotions of fear, worry, and a constant feeling of being overwhelmed. This condition is characterized by excessive, persistent, and unrealistic worry about the most common everyday things.
People with generalized anxiety disorder typically anticipate disaster, misfortune, and other unfortunate occurrences, alongside significant concerns over money, health, family, work, or other things. The worry experienced by people with GAD is typically disproportionate to the situation, usually being an overreaction to everything that happens.
Generalized anxiety disorder could come with the following symptoms:
- Persistent worrying over unfounded concerns
- Always considering worst-case scenarios
- Inability to process uncertainty
- Looking for a possible “threat” in most situations
- A great fear of making the wrong decision
- Constantly feeling on-edge
- Inability to relax
- Inability to concentrate
- Persistent preoccupation with multiple concerns
- Periodic insomnia
- Tremors and twitching
- Persistent feelings of nervousness
- Profuse sweating
- Stomach pains
Panic disorder is a type of anxiety disorder where a person experiences chronic and sudden bouts of panic or fear. It is one of the most common forms of anxiety disorder as one in every ten American adults experiences a panic attack each year. This disorder usually begins between the ages of 15 and 25, with a typical attack usually lasting from five to ten minutes, although some have reported experiencing it for far longer. In severe cases, the person having a panic attack could feel like they were having a heart attack or a stroke, often landing them in the emergency room.
A panic disorder could come with the following symptoms:
- Chest pains
- Shortness of breath
- The sensation of being smothered
- Feeling faint
- Sensation of choking
- Abdominal pain
- Numbness or tingling of extremities
- Sensations of intense cold or heat
- Profuse sweating
- Violent shaking or tremors
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a type of anxiety disorder where people have recurring, unwanted thoughts, ideas, or sensations (obsessions). A person who has OCD will also have the extreme urge to do an action or series of actions repeatedly to satisfy a perceived pattern or sequence which only makes sense to them.
The combination of the intrusive thoughts and the uncontrollable actions could significantly affect a person’s life, as the person is unable to stop or avoid the intrusive thoughts and prevent themselves from giving in to the urge to do the repeated action. To date, there is no real or lasting cure for OCD.
Obsessive-compulsive disorder could come with the following symptoms:
- Extreme fear of contamination or infection
- Great need to arrange or rearrange things constantly
- Tendency to become aggressive over “disrupted” patterns or sequences
- Stressing over not being able to clean or arrange things
- Nagging feelings of doubt and uncertainty
- Tendency to say the first thing on their mind (no filter)
- Becoming immensely stressed when their idea of order is not followed
- Tendency to sexualize different things
- A great compulsion to clean self to the point of injury
- The extreme urge to follow or avoid certain patterns
Extreme need to be sure about certain things
Social anxiety disorder is a condition that leaves people with an extreme fear of social and performance-related situations, or of any scenario where they may be subject to the scrutiny of others. This condition creates a gripping fear that something the person might say or do something that will cause people to humiliate them. People with this condition find it immensely difficult to engage other people in something as simple as talking or being in a place where they could be exposed to other people.
Social phobia could come with the following symptoms:
- Difficulty speaking
- Profuse sweating
- Trembling or shaking
- Rapid heart rate
- Difficulty breathing
- Intense dread at the thought of being social
- Intense worrying ahead of a social event
- Need for alcohol or substances to get enough courage for a social event
- An overwhelming fear of embarrassment or ridicule
Post-traumatic stress disorder is a type of anxiety disorder where the person suffers from abnormal thoughts, fears, and perceptions brought on by trauma they had previously experienced.
There are signs and symptoms to determine if a person has PTSD. This trauma could come in many forms, such as a severe accident that the person survived, or even abuse they experienced as a child or chronically from a spouse or a member of the family.
The most common source is the horrific experience of being in combat or in life-threatening situations brought on by war, which is why this condition is typically associated with veterans and members of the police force.
PTSD could come with the following symptoms:
- Intrusive memories
- Distressing and unwanted flashbacks
- Vivid dreams or nightmares relevant to the traumatic event
- Severe reaction to anything interpreted as relevant to the trauma
- Intense reaction to physical or emotional triggers
- Negative thoughts about life
- Impaired or gaps in memory (mostly about anything relevant to the trauma)
- Detachment from friends and family
- Chronic periods of being emotionally numb
- Suicidal tendencies
- Increased risk of alcohol or substance abuse
- Difficulty sleeping or disruption of sleeping patterns
- Difficulty in concentrating
- Self-destructive behavior
- Emotional outbursts
Can Anxiety and Substance Abuse Occur at the Same Time?
Mental health experts from our outpatient program note that anxiety disorders and addiction are connected, and have been found to co-occur together more and more in recent years. This is known as a dual diagnosis or co-occurring disorder.
What Exactly is a Dual Diagnosis?
A person with a dual diagnosis has a mental illness as well as an alcohol or drug problem. These conditions frequently coexist. At some point in their lives, roughly half of the individuals who have a mental disorder will also have a substance use disorder, and vice versa.
Whether it is because people with anxiety disorders are looking for some escape from using substances or alcohol, or if it is because of a deeper and more troubling mental health issue, experts are always examining the concrete connection between the two conditions.
What researchers and medical professionals know about this is that people suffering from one form of anxiety disorder or another tend to engage in self-medication, which is typically one of the fastest ways to develop heavy substance dependency and addiction. These problems can be treated through dual diagnosis treatment, specifically designed for people with co-occurring disorders.
Jaywalker Lodge Utilizes Evidence-Based Treatments to Help People With Anxiety Disorders and Substance Abuse
There is a certain beneficial effect of being as close to nature as possible when it comes to helping people recover, and this is something that Jaywalker Lodge has taken into account in providing addiction treatment in colorado for the people who need it.
Nestled in a location that provides a breath of fresh air and a tranquil atmosphere for people needing treatment for anxiety and substance abuse, the location of Jaywalker Lodge works immensely well with the non-traditional therapy practiced at the facility to help people in their recovery. We can help you with yours as well. Talk to us now.