Substance Abuse Treatment
At Solutions For Life we offer individual and group substance abuse therapy services for adults and children, family and friends support groups, as well as Intensive Outpatient Treatment Program (IOP). This is in addition to the the DUI and MIP classes. Contact us at the office location nearest to you to learn more and set up an appointment.
Here is some information on the different types of substance abuse.
ALCOHOL, the primary gateway drug, is the most widely used and abused substance in the nation, the state, and our area. Nearly everyone in our community is affected by alcohol use, or abuse, in some manner. This is not to say that all who use alcohol abuse it, far from it. Only 10% of those who use alcohol encounter problems or are addicted to alcohol. The majority of us who drink have no problem managing its use.
Yet, alcohol use and abuse knows no boundaries. Wyoming youth begin experimenting and using alcohol as early as the age of 11. In fact, Wyoming has traditionally led the nation in a number of underage drinking categories.
Alcohol is also the primary substance of use and abuse for the general population. The County Attorney, as well as law enforcement agencies, indicates alcohol is the primary drug involved in crime and offenses against both person and property. According to the detention records, a majority of those jailed are detained for alcohol related offenses. A surprising number of our elderly are treated for trauma due to alcohol-related falls and injuries.
However, the culture of our state and county seems to deny that alcohol is a “drug.” The problem comes with abuse and misuse of alcohol. It is estimated that nearly 50% of all alcohol is consumed by the small percentage of “problem drinkers,” and underage drinkers. It is estimated that underage drinkers consume 23% of all alcohol drank in Wyoming. Alcohol misuse contributes to more deaths in youth than all other drugs combined. Alcohol impacts our society in lost productivity, illness, and injury. Drunk driving, including deaths, causes immeasurable costs to our state. In most cases, those losses are avoidable.
Prevention is realistic and it is cost effective. Family involvement is critical to alcohol prevention.
ILLEGAL SUBSTANCES include marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamine, psilocybin, ecstasy, mescaline, acid, amphetamines, heroine, and a host of other drugs that flood the black market. Most, if not all, are available in our state and communities; one only need know where to look.
Depending upon the area of the state, certain drugs are more prevalent. For the most part, marijuana, methamphetamine and cocaine are abused across the state. The signs of abuse vary according to the drug used. Marijuana users exhibit giddiness, blood shot eyes, lack of coordination, lethargy, and/or an appetite (“munchies”). Cocaine users usually show rapid speech, an inability to sit still for any period of time, a lack of attention span, and/or flushed skin tone. Amphetamine (and methamphetamine) users may show atypical movements or repetitive motions, inability to concentrate, agitated movements and motion, inability to sit still for any period of time, lack of appetite, dilated pupils, and/or rapid speech and paranoia. Symptoms of use vary, but the listed signs are fairly typical.
Substance use and abuse affects the family and particularly youth that are in the home. Parental neglect of the children’s needs, most importantly positive attention and involvement can occur. Further, those children tend to develop attitudes about substance use that are not socially acceptable.
Employment can be affected by the use and abuse of illegal substances. Many companies have prescreening for drug use, and random drug screens. Legal consequences are possible for those who use such substances. Should a person be convicted of a felony charge, legal rights and privileges can be lost. Among them are the right to vote, entry into subsidized housing, grants, and the right to own weapons.
It is easier to not start to use drugs than it is to stop. However, there are resources and services that can assist a person who desires to quit their involvement and abuse of drugs. For additional prevention services contact the Substance Abuse Prevention Coordinator at SFL.
METHAMPHETAMINE abuse has significantly increased in Wyoming. Meth (aka crank, ice, crystal, chalk) is a highly addictive speed. Meth can be taken orally, injected, smoked, or snorted. Meth addicts are extremely agitated, nervous, paranoid, exhibit rapid speech patterns, are disoriented, and can be dangerous. “Crankers”, those addicted to meth, may stay up for days at a time while abusing the drug. They often then “crash," or come down and sleep for long periods of time.
Meth addicts may show signs of injection use in the form of “tracks," needle marks on their skin. Meth contributes to domestic violence, child abuse and neglect, theft, and other property crimes. Methamphetamine abuse costs our society in other ways as well. Law enforcement expenses, court costs, medical care costs, and costs to the families involved. Those costs to families are difficult to estimate.
Our community and multiple agencies within this county are working on a local meth initiative. We are collecting data, with the assistance of many agencies, to develop a picture of the meth problem. The Douglas Police Department is arranging community meetings involving stakeholders to determine the extent of the problem, the issues involved, and to develop a community plan to address this problem.