Monday, June 24, 2019

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Drugs and Substance Abuse and Treatment in Vineland, New Jersey

Vineland, New Jersey is a small lower middle-class city in southern New Jersey, where a severe heroin crisis is sweeping through this small city and its surrounding communities. The heroin problem is not limited to this small town. The entire state of New Jersey has been nicknamed “Herointown” due to the huge number of overdose deaths from the drug. Fortunately, there are treatment options and drug rehab in Vineland.

New Jersey is indeed a state in crisis. It has recorded over 5,217 deaths from heroin overdoses. Williamstown, just 16 miles from Vineland, has a heroin overdose rate of almost 25 times the national average. As a state, New Jersey has some breathtaking statistics such as the number of people who have entered treatment for heroin alone since 2010, a staggering 184,038. Over 49% of individuals who have sought drug treatment are heroin addicts.

According to a special report by Stephen Sterling, if you took all the heroin users in the state of New Jersey and put them in one place, it would be the 4th largest city in New Jersey. The scariest statistic of all is that, according to the New Jersey Department of Health, more people have died from opioid overdose that suicide, homicide, car accidents and HIV/AIDS.

Vineland, although it is the 12th largest city is listed as one the top 10 places in New Jersey with the worst drug problems. The Vineland school district is among the highest reported drug and alcohol usage among juveniles and rapidly increasing.

Even though the prognoses for this town looks grim, there are local citizens fighting back. A former addict and gang member, Michael DeLeon, is founder of Steered Straight, a juvenile delinquent prevention and intervention program. This local Cumberland County man is desperately trying to keep kids off drugs and from making similar mistakes that he himself made. He knows firsthand the destructive power of drugs. In response to the massive amounts of deaths from heroin overdoses in the state, he created a documentary called “Kids Are Dying.”

Crime in Vineland, New Jersey

Vineland, New Jersey has a crime rate that is higher than 57% of the United States, even though it is a small city with a population of 60,724. The crimes in Vineland are mostly property thieft rather than violent crime. These crimes are an indication of the increasing Heroin problem in the area.

The police in Cumberland County, of which Vineland is one of the town within its jurisdiction, have been diligently working to rid the area of the drug problem that it suffers. Unfortunately, Vineland is a drug trafficking hub that doesn’t show any sign of cleaning up in the future.

There have been 52,721 drug arrests alone in the state of New Jersey since 2014. While this is both alarming in the number of drugs rampaging the state, it shows a diligence in the police that they are trying their hardest to fight the problem.

New Jersey is Fighting Back

Changes have occurred in statewide law to help combat the enormous amount of overdose victims. The good Samaritan Emergency Response Act, allows drug users who are with someone overdosing to call for emergency services without being prosecuted for using drugs.

Companies such as CVS and Walgreens in New Jersey are now no longer requiring prescription for customers to get Naloxone, the drug that can reverse a heroin overdose and save lives. It can also be used to treat the addiction itself. Many lawmakers in New Jersey believe that this can be what helps with the heroin crisis in the state.

Cumberland County Drug Court has had a positive impact. This system is an alternative to jail sentences for non-violent drug crimes. The program saves the local courts money and helps the offender get much needed help for their drug problem. Drug court offers detox and residential treatment to offenders with severe substance abuse. The benefits of this program have had a farther-reaching impact. 88 percent of drug court graduates are employed, and more babies have been born free of drugs.

Cumberland County, New Jersey is the Most Unhealthy County in New Jersey

A study by the Robert Wood Johnston Foundation and the University of Wisconsin listed Cumberland County as the unhealthiest county in New Jersey due to the high number of drug addicts, as well as other physical ailments that reside within the county. As a result of heroin users injecting the drug intravenously, the disease Hepatitis C has risen significantly.

Most Prolific Drugs Abused in New Jersey

Heroin

Cocaine

Crack

Methamphetamine

Prescription Drug (ex: Pain Killers)

MDMA (street name: Molly)

LSD (Street name: acid)

Marijuana

Getting Help in Vineland, New Jersey

Although admitting you have an addiction and need help is a critical first step on the road to recovery, it is probably the hardest step of all. Seeking treatment can be freighting if you don’t know what to expect. You are making yourself vulnerable and letting down your guard, for perhaps the first time ever. Rehab is a place that you will find, not just help for your addiction but support to make the necessary life changes that are essential to beat your addiction for good. Honesty is important at this time. You may be embarrassed by your addiction and things you have done for the drug, but no one will judge you. The rehab staff is there to support you and aid in your recovery.

Finding a Treatment Facility in Vineland, New Jersey

There are a number of good rehab treatment centers in and around Vineland that can help you beat your specific addiction. Your first reaction might be to just jump feet first into a rehab program, however, you or someone you trust, will want to look at the facility’s program, history, accreditation and licensing. You need to feel like you aren’t just another number and that the treatment program will be tailored to your specific needs. You want to make sure that the rehab facility will have programs that will support you after your treatment is over. It is important that the facility views recovery as a lifelong journey and are committed to staying with you and keeping you sober.

A good treatment facility will look at your treatment as a unique case and treat is as such. Drug dependencies such as heroin require extremely special care. These treatments can take longer and need special attention.

What is Detox?

Detox is sometimes necessary if you are addicted to something that causes physical withdrawal, such as heroin or prescription medication. Meaning your body will physically crave the drug. Some physical withdrawals can be seriously dangerous, your body may not be able to handle the withdrawals it is encountering.

This is going to be a rough time. However, in a proper medical detox facility, medical staff can provide medication that will ease your discomfort and make sure that your detox goes smoothly. They can make sure that your physical and mental health isn’t impacted. You will receive constant supervision and support.

Substance Specific Detox

Attending a detox that specializes in treating the withdrawal from your specific addiction is always the best option. They know exactly what you will experience, how to treat you and have a proven track record. They are prepared to help you. The rehab facility you select can direct you to a detox facility that specializes in treating your specific addiction.

Medication-Assisted Treatment Program

Some treatments require a taper rather than a complete stopping of the drug. Many times, the ramifications of completely stopping the drug is just too dangerous. Rather than making the patient go “cold turkey” and watch them suffer such serious physical withdrawals, doctors can give patients certain medications that aren’t the true version of the drug but will be given in controlled amounts and eventually tapered down until the drug is out of their system safely.

What is Inpatient Treatment?

Once you complete detox and your body is free from the drug and healthy again, the real journey to recovery begins. Often, severe drug addiction requires intense therapy to break the cycle of using and abusing drugs. Cutting patients off from the rest of the world, so to speak, and therefore the pull of the drug and those outside influences for a period of time is important. Usually this treatment is in a hospital setting and consists of round the clock observation and intense therapy. Sometimes, addictions are caused by underlying mental disorders and trained physicians overseeing your treatment can diagnose and treat these disorders as they treat your addiction. The length of your stay in Inpatient will be determined by your doctor and counselor. Normal stays are usually at least a month and can sometimes be longer, depending on your circumstances. 

RTC- Residential Treatment Center

Residential treatment centers are a more relaxed not quite the hospital setting of inpatient. Patients still have full time support, but the observation is more laid-back. Although the setting is different, they will still receive the intense therapy they require, such as behavioral therapy.

Behavioral Therapy

This therapy helps an addict learn to change and control their thoughts. They will learn how to recognize the thoughts and behaviors that lead them to using drugs and work to find way to channel those thoughts and change their actions when faced with stress and temptation.

Individual and Group Therapy

Patients will have times when they meet with their rehab counselors individually and others when they will meet with groups of patients in the treatment center. The group therapy helps build social ties and support within the center, to help each other deal with your addictions and aid in each other’s recovery.

PHP-Partial Hospitalization Program

This is a program that is not as restrictive as residential treatment. This is an intermediate step between residential and intensive outpatient treatment. There is more independence for patients and there is an opportunity for the patient to demonstrate self-discipline. While they are still being cared for by the rehab counselors, they are able to take some control of their own recovery. This is an important step that a recovering addict needs to take, particularly as they prepare to reenter their life sober. They will still attend meetings and therapy sessions as they did before.

Why do Partial Hospitalization Program?

Partial Hospitalization Program is great for individuals who aren’t really ready to be on their own and be in an outpatient program. This step benefits those patients who are a risk to relapse without the support that this program has.

Patients in this program have the freedom to keep living their regular life but maintain a tight support network that will help them avoid temptation.

What is Outpatient Treatment?

Outpatient treatment is a less intense treatment program where patients live at home and participate in their daily life but attend multiple meetings during the week. This treatment is for individuals with less severe addictions and who have no need to detox.

This is also the step after more intensive inpatient or partial hospitalization. This step requires a lot of discipline on the patient’s part. Patients in this program are in the world facing their demons head-on. They need to rely on the skills that they learned in therapy to help them cope.

Benefits of Outpatient Treatment

Outpatient therapy allows individuals to seek help but still keep their life going. Their life can still continue so they are able to tend to their responsibilities such as work, children, home. They can also lean on their family for support and help build a support network at home.

Patients also learn to conquer their addiction and work on their recovery in the real world. They learn to use their coping skills to help them deal with the stress in their life and turn away from temptation.

This program is more economic for those who are unable to pay the cost of inpatient rehab. Individuals still get the support and help they need, but at a much lower cost.

You Are in Control of Your Treatment

No matter what program you participate in, your recovery and eventual sobriety is all really in your hands. Most important is your own belief that you can recover, and you can stay sober. There are people who want to help you and if you are open to it, they will. This may seem like a frightening time in your life, but the rehab staff are there to help you. You can reclaim your life and stay clean.