GHB addiction, although not as common as other addictions, is just as serious. If you are worried that you or a loved one is addicted to GHB, do not hesitate to get more information about attending one of our treatment centers to get help.
GHB, also known as gamma-hydroxybutyrate, is a drug that is a central nervous system depressant. This compound naturally occurs in the body in small amounts, as well as in some food and drinks. However, the illicit drug GHB is much more potent than these naturally-occurring amounts. GHB is usually sold as a clear liquid in a small vial, and its colorlessness and lack of taste have made it a popular choice as a date rape drug. Individuals who have this dangerous drug slipped into their drinks at parties or club scenes could end up as unfortunate victims of sexual assault.
GHB, when sold illegally, is marketed either towards bodybuilders as being a strength enhancer or as a party drug that can induce feelings of euphoria, calm, and increased sex drive. It is especially popular among young adults, who are at a curious age and have not yet fully developed the part of their brain responsible for healthy decision-making. Being a club drug, GHB is often in the same space as alcohol and is added to drinks at times, such as in cases of date rape. Due to both GHB and alcohol acting as central nervous system depressants, this combination of drug use is extremely dangerous.
Effects of GHB Use
The dosing of GHB must be very precise, as a small dose change can be the difference between effects that feel good to the user and a potential overdose. The desired effects are euphoria, drowsiness, feelings of calmness, and increased sociability. However, at high doses, GHB use can cause dizziness, vomiting, shaking, loss of coordination, seizures, coma, difficulty breathing, blackouts, or even death.
The long-term effects of GHB abuse are currently unknown, however, researchers do know that the drug causes addiction to GHB through increased psychological and physical dependence on the drug. This means that those who try to stop using GHB will experience distressing GHB withdrawal symptoms, so it is important for them to seek treatment at a professional addiction treatment facility especially during the detox period. Although research needs to be done further regarding adverse consequences of GHB addiction long-term, individuals have reported increased memory issues, anxiety, heart disease, and difficulty breathing.
GHB Addiction Treatment Services: Inpatient Rehab in Lantana
Inpatient facilities are invaluable in terms of GHB addiction treatment. While in an inpatient treatment center, doctors, nurses, and medical staff are available to provide medical advice and administer medically assisted treatment to combat the overwhelming withdrawal symptoms experienced. It is not unusual for those who have abused GHB for a significant amount of time to experience overwhelming withdrawal symptoms such as paranoia, tremors, vomiting, hallucinations, or anxiety. Sudden withdrawal from drug abuse involving a GHB addiction can result in a medical emergency or even lethal complications as the body could be triggered into seizures, cardiac arrest, or failure of the kidneys.
Not seeking professional treatment advice when treating GHB addiction can have severe consequences; medical professionals are not around during GHB addiction treatment simply to relieve GHB withdrawal symptoms, but also to save lives if the above issues should occur. While in an inpatient program, some medications that may be utilized to assist someone through detox are benzodiazepines for anxiety, anticonvulsants for potential seizures, antihypertensive medications to lower the risk of issues with the heart, or blood pressure, or antidepressants for mental illness.
Visiting a Treatment Facility for GHB Addiction Treatment
The treatment process for any type of substance abuse or drug addiction depends upon the individual and their specific situation. Treatment options are always explained carefully and empathetically to patients and their families, and the rehab center will work with the patient to figure out the best treatment program for the individual. During detox and beyond, specifically trained substance abuse therapists are there to conduct individual and group therapy, utilizing effective therapeutic modalities including cognitive-behavioral therapy. After an inpatient facility with Archstone Behavioral Health is attended for initial detox, it is recommended that patients continue with the program in one of our outpatient facilities in order to create lasting change through ongoing support.