Category Archives: Sober living

Injection Drug Use: Background, Pathophysiology, Epidemiology

Finally, two IV drug users, particularly if they are sexual partners or have a very close personal relationship, may consider a single needle and syringe set to be theirs together. Both may use the set without thinking of it as sharing, which for them may refer to letting someone other than one of the joint owners use the equipment. The use of nonsterile injection equipment may account for a range of infections in IV drug users, including bacterial endocarditis, hepatitis, malaria, and cellulitis or soft tissue infections (Louria et al., 1967).

  • Although a number of studies have focused on the characteristics of drug users, few have examined the characteristics of the community environment.
  • Among people ages 12 years and older in 2019, 57.2 million people used illicit drugs in the past year, according to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health .
  • Many illegal drug users will inject these substances directly into their veins for an immediate high.
  • HIV and People Who Inject Drugs See the latest data on HIV among people who inject drugs, and learn what CDC is doing to prevent HIV infections among this population.
  • The dynamics of IV drug use—injection behaviors, drugs of choice, and sexual and contraceptive behaviors—vary over time for each drug user.

One anonymous quote described it in this way “It’s hard already to sit down and listen to patients with all the preventive care and new issues/urgent issues that have to be dealt with in one visit. A «good» physician who stays after hours every day, or runs late every clinic is a burnt-out physician.” Others suggested the solution to this issue is using social workers and substance use or addiction counselors. Other frequently-reported barriers for harm reduction delivery for injection drug use include resource and referral limitations, knowledge/training of providers, patients not ready or interested in harm reduction .

Study implementation

Consolidated guidelines on iv drug use, viral hepatitis and STI prevention, diagnosis, treatment and care… Drugs, substances, and certain chemicals used to make drugs are classified into five distinct categories or schedules depending upon the drug’s acceptable medical use and the drug’s abuse or dependency potential. The abuse rate is a determinate factor in the scheduling of the drug; for example, Schedule I drugs have a high potential for abuse and the potential to create severe psychological and/or physical dependence.

substance use disorder

On average, people who inject drugs are over34 times more likelyto develop venous or leg ulcers than those who have never injected before. Other gaps identified in our study include low implementation of MAT and relatively low interest in X-waiver training and obtainment. While prescription of naloxone for eligible patients on chronic opioid medication was high in this study, routine screening and assessment of injection drug use behavior among patients was low. Additionally, there is a significant proportion of providers who do not currently offer at-risk patients Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis , attributed to a perceived lack of knowledge and training. To promote this practice, we suggest a guideline be introduced, which would provide delineated expectations of care that can be distributed through protocols across different providers and clinics.

Risk of HIV

Another option for reducing HCV transmission is encouraging users to use intranasal drugs as an alternative to injection drugs. For related information, see Medscape’s Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C Resource Centers. There are several ways in which IV drug users can use the same injection equipment and not think of themselves as sharing. First, a drug user may purchase or rent equipment that has already been used by another IV drug user. Because the identity of the previous user is not known, because there is money involved, and because considerable time may have elapsed between the first and second use, a drug user may not consider this type of multiple use to be sharing. If the injection equipment is new or sterilized, the first person using it is not at risk for HIV infection because it has not yet been shared; who goes first in the multiple use of injection equipment complicates the definition of sharing.


A collapsed vein can no longer function properly, and blood does not travel through this vein anymore. When a virus, bacteria or other germs are introduced and trapped beneath the skin, an abscess can form. Local infection in the skin results in the body’s immune system trying to defend itself from the infection by sending white blood cells to the infected area.

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Many who do survive are left with life-changing effects, such aspost-traumatic stress disorder, chronic pain and fatigue, organ dysfunction (organs don’t work properly), and/or amputations. After overcoming her own struggles with addiction, she began working in the treatment field in 2012. She graduated from Palm Beach State College in 2016 with additional education in Salesforce University programs. A part of the Banyan team since 2016, Alyssa brings over 5 years of experience in the addiction treatment field. The Clinical Team at BAART Programs is our team of physicians and medical directors within the organization.

What are 3 risk factors of drug abuse?

Risk Factors for High-Risk Substance Use

Family history of substance use. Favorable parental attitudes towards the behavior. Poor parental monitoring. Parental substance use.

Sharing needles or failing to properly sanitize the equipment can lead to the direct transmission of blood-related conditions, including hepatitis and HIV. Although HIV transmission is relatively rare, it remains a significant risk in environments where intravenous drug use is common. Safe injection sites are intended to be locations where people can go to use injectable drugs. These sites are designed to provide access to medical care if someone accidentally overdoses, and they help create a more sanitary environment for IV drug use. Hepatitis C. A blood-borne infection, Hepatitis C can be spread when IV drug users share needles.

If you inject drugs, you are also at risk of getting HIV because you may be more likely to take risks with sex when you are high. An alternative to syringes in the 1970s was to use a glass medicine dropper, supposedly easier to manipulate with one hand. A large hairpin was used to make a hole in the skin and the dropper containing the drug was inserted and the bulb squeezed, releasing it into the tissues. This method was also reported—by William S. Burroughs and other sources—for intravenous administration at least as far back as 1930. Those who inject IV drugs are at a higher risk of developing wound botulism, which can be life-threatening.

  • The data that are collected include demographic characteristics of patients and selected details on reportable drug-use episodes.
  • In cities with relatively few IV drug users, the equivalent of a shooting gallery may be the dealer’s apartment, a rented room, or a hotel room in which the dealer makes «house works» available to inject drugs at the time of purchase.
  • Because many people report smoking marijuana and relatively few go on to inject heroin or other injectable drugs, the efficiency of attempts to stop marijuana use as a way to prevent IV drug use is questionable.
  • Usually, needle exchange programs operate by exchanging the used needles for an equal number of clean needles and syringes.
  • «Pop scars,» round- or oval-shaped permanent scars, are very common, and can stigmatize abusers for the rest of their lives.

Give Back by Telling Your Story It Could Save a Life

But some of us have entered rehabilitation against our wills due tolegal issuesor family ultimatums, only to reach a point ofacceptanceafter the fact. If this has been the case for you, then you will need to remember it when telling your story. Newcomers may even decide that 12-step programs are nothing more than a bunch of depressing people telling woeful tales, and they may decide not to return to the fold. As such, you don’t want this part of your story to run more than half an hour, assuming that you are telling your story at an hour-long speaker meeting. Since most meetings begin with literature readings and group meditations, you should actually shorten this to about minutes.

Cori’s goal is to ensure all patient’s needs are met in an accurate and timely manner. She is a Certified Recovery Residence Administrator with The Florida Certification Board and licensed Notary Public in the state of Florida. When I tell my story of recovery, I try to stick to this same format. I don’t go too far into “what it was like” but instead cover that a little and then get more in-depth into following the 12 steps and the relief that I’ve received.

Share your experience of personal recovery.

If you have struggled with addiction, sharing your experience with potential clients can be extremely powerful. It allows you to be better at your job and helps you touch the lives of more people. Many individuals in active addiction are simply looking to be seen and understood, and hearing your experience can help them feel less alone at the start of their journey. If sharing your story wasn’t too personal, remain open to discussions afterward. If someone in the room really resonated with your story, they may try to talk to you when the AA or NA meeting wraps up.

  • Whether it’s a diary, a standard journal, or just a one-line-a-day journal, putting a feeling or experience down in words that you can later reflect on is so very beneficial to your overall health.
  • If you’ve relapsed once or several times before, sharing what you learned from these experiences can be extremely valuable, especially for other sober living residents.
  • It’s difficult and it may not always be the sober life you envisioned for yourself.
  • Butch also maintained a private practice, specializing in family of origin work and addiction populations.

This is the crux of your story, the reason that you have chosen to tell it in the first place. If it were not for the improvements to your life that have been discovered in sobriety, there would be little point in telling your story in the first place. This is the light at the end of the tunnel, the part of your story that will leave your listeners feeling as if sobriety may benefit them as well. This will not likely be a lengthy part of your story, but it is a pivotal one. For all, it will provide a transition between what things were like and what things are like now. When telling your story, “what happened” should be considered the turn of events that led you tohitting rock bottom, and in doing so spurred yourwillingnessto enter recovery.

Let Gateway Turn the Page on Your Recovery Story

If you’re caught in a life of drug or alcohol addiction, please know that there is hope. With the right treatment and therapy, you can begin to write your own recovery story. At Gateway in Chicago, Illinois, we’re here to help you break free from a life of addiction.

Embrace tradition and sharing your story in recovery on the connectivity you have to the recovery community. When discussing people you love or care about, focus on emotional stability you get from loved ones and partners, not romantic feelings. Focus on improving your concepts of relationships and how that differs from when you were in active addiction.

Changing More Lives Than Yours: Helping Others by Sharing Your Story

Perhaps how you are embracing relapse prevention can be included here. Your change can help others change, and sharing your story might just be that first drop of rain that eventually becomes a waterfall. There is much talk about stigma as it pertains to mental health issues; whether it is substance abuse or an eating disorder, our culture has long preferred to simply not talk about it. While some substantive efforts aim to break down the stigma, the fact remains that discussing these things aloud can sometimes be rather daunting. If you would like to share your story with us to be shared on our website or social media platforms, please email you story to . If you have any questions about sharing your story, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Should I tell my mental health story?

Benefits of sharing your story

Sharing your story can: show that people can continue to work and manage mental health conditions. encourage others to speak openly about their experience with a mental health condition. help others experiencing a mental health condition to take action.

While no one can tell you exactly how to write your addiction story, honesty and vulnerability are some of the most fundamental keys to recovery that should be included. When you share your story, be honest about your experience with addiction and recovery. Don’t try to hide the difficult parts or make them sound more glamorous than they are. Others need to see that recovery is not easy, but it is possible. This honest insight into your story can be constructive for someone just starting on their journey. It allows them to develop realistic expectations of what they can expect in recovery.

Your Family

After the first date – some people prefer for the first date to be finished before they bring up their history of addiction. Waiting until the date is over might also give the other person a chance to process their feelings and ask questions before agreeing to a second date. While it is important to be honest about the reality of addiction and recovery, it is also essential to focus on the positive. Your story is meant to inspire and motivate others, so focus on the hope, the courage, and the strength it takes to overcome addiction. For example, if you share that you hit rock bottom when you lost your job, be honest about the fact that you were fired for showing up to work high and you didn’t quit your job.


If you have your own story to share, here are some ways you can offer your experience to clients. While you share your recovery story, it’s vital to acknowledge the people who got you to the place you’re at today. Recognizing your support system can help you remember that there are people cheering for your continued recovery. Your recovery story is a personal account of your experience with substance abuse.

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