Why a Medically Managed Detox is Important

Some of you may be familiar with what withdrawal might look like if you’ve seen the movie, The Basketball Diaries starring Leonardo DiCaprio. In one of the scenes, Leonardo DiCaprio is experiencing withdrawal with no medical intervention and trying to go ‘cold turkey.’ He’s become addicted to Heroin and with the help of his friend Reggie he attempts to detox.

It’s true what you’ve seen in some movies or TV shows. Detox also referred to as withdrawal management, can be an uncomfortable and possibly dangerous if not executed properly. Detox is completed by patients that have severe dependence on alcohol or other drugs and need assistance getting rid of all these chemicals from the body. Not all detoxes are the same and can differ from person-to-person.

What is a Medical Detox?

According to research, a medically supervised detoxification treatment has always been seen as the “gold standard” and as a reasonable position to begin treatment. Read more

How Do You Know If Someone Is Addicted to Drugs or Alcohol?

“I drank too much the other night, that won’t happen again!” “I just need one more hit. I’m fine!”  You may have often heard people you care about say these phrases and not think twice about them- until recently. Perhaps, there have been changes in their behaviour that have you concerned.

Changes in behaviour can be a sign of mental illness or addiction. Unfortunately, many people don’t understand what addiction is or how it develops. Addiction is not something that happens overnight. It’s not something you decide to try as you would decide to try Starbuck’s latest Frappuccino.

The World Health Organization (WHO) states that addiction and mental illness affects approximately 10% of the population at any point in time. WHO also reveals that one in four families has at least one member currently struggling with addiction or mental illness. Addiction has no boundaries. Read more

Mental Health Week Ends, But the Conversation Continues

With the increase in awareness about mental health, people are starting to understand that addiction is a problem that affects many Canadians. According to the Centre of Addiction and Mental Health, one in five people will experience mental illness or addiction at some point in their lives. It’s important we continue to address mental health at home, with our family doctors, at our workplaces, and with loved ones.

More companies and healthcare professionals are discovering the benefits of learning how to help and support employees or patients with addiction and substance abuse problems. Corporate and healthcare professionals need to have proper information and resources to make sound decisions regarding support or treatment options. Gone are the days where addiction or substance abuse issues were swept under the rug. With the introduction of Bill C-45, employers have a responsibility to address substance abuse in the workplace. Read more

Six Steps to Effectively Approach an Employee with a Substance Abuse Problem

Are you concerned about an employee’s substance abuse problem, but aren’t sure how to approach him or her about it? This is a situation that many HR professionals face. According to a survey conducted by the Hazelden Foundation, “54% of HR professionals believe that getting employees to acknowledge or talk about substance abuse is their toughest challenge.”

The truth is that this is a delicate situation and it can either be a successful intervention or a terrible one if not conducted properly. Our research indicates that the earlier a workplace intervenes when an employee is struggling with an addiction, the sooner their recovery begins. Bellwood’s research also indicates that an employee has a better chance at recovery when an employer is involved.

According to Bellwood’s Outcomes Studies, employees experience an 82% success rate when they are referred by an employer. Read more

What to Do When Your Loved One Isn’t Ready For Addiction Treatment

What can you do when you have a family member who won’t stop using? Do you feel as if you’ve tried several approaches but nothing seems to change? You are not alone. Many Canadian families struggle with substance abuse more often than you think. Approximately 1.3 million Canadians still need help with substance abuse. [1]

Unfortunately, addiction is a disease that affects not only the person with the addiction but all those around them. Family members often take on roles and responsibilities that were never theirs to begin with, but feel they have no choice but to act in those roles. Whether you are a mother, father, spouse or sibling, there is a way that you can provide support for your family member, and it starts with your own healing process.

Lana Robson is an Addiction Counsellor who leads the Family Program at Bellwood Health Services and she believes family members can be catalysts for someone struggling with substance abuse. Read more

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