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Cross Addictions

Is Complete Abstinence the Only Way?

Addiction has the ability to take over the life of anyone who has been affected. This includes the lives of friends, family members, and other loved ones involved. In order to stay sober and begin healing yourself as well as your relationships, you need to understand cross addictions. Many people have the misconception that they can quit one substance but continue using others. This virtually never works and leads to relapse, and it’s important to understand why that happens.

What are Cross Addictions?

There are many people who struggle with addiction, and they have a primary substance of choice. While there are some who only use one substance, most people use a variety of substances. The categories of substances can be divided into depressants (alcohol, opioids, benzodiazepines, and marijuana) and stimulants (amphetamines, methamphetamines, and cocaine). Some people combine the same types of drugs, but others may use depressants with stimulants to have “balance”. Some of the common substance combinations include:

  • Alcohol and cocaine

  • Heroin and benzodiazepines

  • Heroin and methamphetamines

  • Amphetamines and alcohol

Using multiple substances puts you at a much higher risk of overdose due to how these substances interact, and it also puts more strain on your body and internal organs. Combining substances like alcohol and cocaine can be extremely dangerous as well because people use stimulants to lessen the effects of alcohol. Without having the full effect of alcohol, you’re at a higher risk of alcohol poisoning.

Pursuing Complete Abstinence

Many people make the mistake of thinking they have one primary substance that’s their problem while the other is under control. For example, someone may drink and think that cocaine is the problem, so they just decide to quit using cocaine when they drink. Unfortunately, this isn’t how the brain works. Our brain wires neuropathways together for various behaviors to be more efficient. For instance, when someone gets in the habit of using cocaine every time they drink, it's going to become a craving to the point where every time they drink, they use cocaine. This is how many people relapse on a substance they swore off as they continue to drink or use.

Starting on the Path of Recovery

If you’re struggling with substance abuse, Enlightened Solutions Detox can help. We specialize in helping people who have cross addictions, and we can help you safely come off of the drugs or alcohol. Through medical as well as holistic methods, we provide detox services to people throughout New Jersey in areas like Ocean County, Atlantic County, and Camden County. We also have therapists who can help you learn why you’re turning to these substances in the first place so you can learn a better way of living. Enlightened Solutions is also passionate about helping people stay connected after they complete treatment. We have an alumni program that keeps people connected to the program to help strengthen their long-term recovery. For more information about how we can help you or a loved one, call us today at 833-233-7336.

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