Is Addiction Genetic?

Is Addiction Genetic?

Fighting addiction is an uphill battle. When determining the best strategies to use, therapists will often start by finding out what caused dependency issues to form. Many of them will ask the question, is addiction genetic?


This article will explore the genetic factors of addiction and answer the question, is drug addiction genetic, so you can better understand what’s behind addictive tendencies. 


What Causes Addiction? 

Addiction is a chronic mental health disorder. When people are dealing with a mental disorder, they may be reluctant to reach out for help. They may be dealing with stigmas; they may not have the time or money to get the care they need, or they may not think their problem is that bad. 

Instead of getting assistance, they do drugs and alcohol to relieve their symptoms. While the drugs may produce temporary feelings of calm or euphoria, they will ultimately take the patient on a downward spiral. 


They can lead to devastating lows that make mental illness worse. And if the drugs become addictive, they can result in financial difficulties, troubled relationships, physical ailments, legal issues, and more. \


Is Addiction Genetic? 

The short answer to the question is whether drug addiction is genetic. At least half of a person’s risk of forming an addiction can be linked to genetic factors.


Nora Volkow, MD, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse points out that a specific type of dopamine receptor called D2 can predict whether someone might become addicted to cocaine, alcohol, or heroin. She points out brain imaging that suggests people with fewer D2 receptors are more likely to form an addiction than those with an abundance of the receptors. 


The amount of D2 a person has is based on genetics. University of Pennsylvania psychologist Caryn Lerman, Ph.D., notes that genetics account for about 75% of a person’s likelihood to start smoking. They also account for about 60% of their tendency to become addicted and 54% of their ability to quit.


There are also certain genes that contribute to addiction, including the following: 

  • Alcohol dehydrogenase 1B (ADH1B) and Aldehyde Dehydrogenase 2 (ALDH2): These play a role in the metabolism of alcohol. Higher or lower activity of the genes can result in uncomfortable symptoms if a person drinks alcohol, making them less likely to become addicted.  
  • GABRA2 and CHRM2: These genes have been associated with alcoholism. 
  • MAOA, SLC6A4, COMT: These genes and others are associated with stress resilience. People that are more resilient to stress will be less likely to turn to drugs and alcohol. 
  • CHRNA2: Low levels of this gene have been linked with cannabis use disorder. 
  • CUL3, PDE4B and PTGER3: Studies have found that these genes contribute to smoking and alcohol use. 
  • HIST2H2BD: This gene has been linked to cocaine addiction. 


Environmental factors can also play a role in addiction. For example, if you grew up in a high-stress environment or one where neglect and abuse were prevalent, you will be more likely to develop dependency issues. 


Children may also be influenced by their parent’s behavior and other role models. So, if the adults did drugs and alcohol in their lives, they may copy their behavior and begin to use themselves. 


How to Find Treatment for Drug and Alcohol Addiction

While discovering the genetic factors of addiction can be helpful, the bottom line is getting the care you need. Online research will reveal several rehab facilities, but it can be difficult to find one that’s right for you. If you check out Refine Recovery, you will find we check off all the boxes. 


Refine Recovery offers the experience of a luxury rehab in Beverly Hills. We provide world-class individualized treatment. We offer multiple paths to recovery, ensuring you get the customized care that’s right for you. 


Our comprehensive addiction treatment program in Beverly Hills includes detox, therapy, and aftercare. We take a dual diagnosis approach that ensures long-term recovery. We believe in treating the mind, body, and spirit in overcoming dependency issues. 

Getting past addiction is not easy but Refine Recovery will give you the assistance you need to make it through. Call us to find out how we can help you on your journey. We will give you the tools you need to achieve a higher quality of life.

Are Depression and Addiction Related?

Are Depression and Addiction Related?

Depression is a serious mental illness that can have a detrimental effect on an individual. It brutally affects a person’s daily life, often leading to severe depression. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 10 percent of adults in America suffer from depression.


Many people with depression battle addiction and may wonder, are depression and addiction related? The truth is, the two conditions are complex, and alone each can feel impossible to manage. When a person deals with the two conditions simultaneously, it can feel overwhelming.


Learning the answers to the question of whether depression and addiction related can help those battling depression and addiction and their loved ones navigate the path to recovery. Depression and substance use disorder are considered dual diagnosis disorders, and Refine Recovery offers comprehensive dual diagnosis treatment in Beverly Hills.


What are the Signs of Depression?

The term depression is often used to loosely describe how a person feels after a tough week of life or after a difficult relationship strain, such as a bad breakup. But clinical depression is much more complicated and is a serious mood disorder. Specific symptoms accompany true depression versus the sadness many people temporarily experience during tough times in life.


Many symptoms of depression exist, including but not limited to the following:

  • Feeling extremely tired, even after sleeping
  • Experiencing difficulty falling or staying asleep
  • Feeling irritable, restless, or easily frustrated
  • A loss of interest in activities once previously enjoyed
  • Waking early in the morning or sleeping too far into the day
  • Feeling tired even after sleeping
  • Feelings of worthlessness, helplessness, or guilt
  • Difficulty concentrating, making decisions, or remembering
  • Thoughts of self-harm or suicide
  • Physical ailments that seem to persist despite treatment


What Causes Addiction?

Addiction is a complex disease that impacts the brain and can occur as a result of many underlying causes. Various risk factors have been identified as to what contributes to the development of addiction, although the causes still remain less understood.

Risk factors that are linked with addiction vary by individual; however, known risk factors for the development of addiction:

  • Neglect from caregivers, including parents and guardians
  • Having drug access from peers or at school
  • Aggressive behavior during adolescence
  • Experimenting with substances during adolescence
  • Peer pressure
  • Poverty within the community


Genetics can also likely play into addiction. Genes play an important role in defining the traits of an individual, and some traits are passed genetically. Furthermore, environmental influences can also impact a trait, such as when a child grows up in an environment that exhibits drug addiction.


Addiction is heritable, meaning that genes can impact whether a child will battle addiction, especially considering how close the genetic relationship between a child and their parents is.


Are Depression and Addiction Related?

Both depression and addiction are common within the United States, with about 16.1 million Americans experiencing at least one depressive episode within the past year, while approximately 7.9 million Americans also have dual diagnoses, which refers to having a mental illness (such as depression) in addition to a substance use disorder at the same time.


Both depression and addiction can affect each other. Some people who battle depression may turn to substance use to ease or “numb” their symptoms. On the other hand, those who have a substance use disorder may go on to battle depression. A person may develop either condition first. Each condition can stem from the other and occur at the same time. Some people strive to battle emotional pain with substances, while others experience depression as a result of the neurological effects of substance abuse.


Often, individuals battling depression opt to drink alcohol to help increase their mood, in an effort to make their depression better. But in reality, this will not make a person’s depression better but might even make it worse.


Some people drink for so long that they become addicted to alcohol, leading to alcoholism. This makes it excruciatingly hard to eliminate a drinking problem, especially when the person battles severe depression.


How to Find Treatment for Depression and Addiction

Whether you feel the need to determine for yourself or a loved one the answer to the question of are depression and addiction related, Refine Recovery is a luxury rehab in Beverly Hills that is equipped with trained professionals to help ease the burden of both depression and addiction, with the hope of lasting recovery. Don’t hesitate to contact us today to find out more about our high-quality, personalized treatment.

What to Look for in an Effective Detox Program?

What to Look for in an Effective Detox Program?

If you are looking to overcome drug addiction, the first step you will go through is detox. This is a process of allowing toxins to leave your system, so you become clean. The detox process is not easy to deal with. Withdrawal symptoms are produced, which makes people likely to return to doing drugs. That’s why an effective detox program is so important. 


This article will talk about what’s involved in comprehensive detox so you can find the program that’s right for you. 


What is Detox?

Detox is a process that involves allowing drugs to leave the body. It is often the first step of recovery. 


Many people have a hard time getting through detox due to withdrawal symptoms. Their bodies are not used to being without the drug, and it reacts by producing symptoms such as:

  • Digestive issues
  • Fever 
  • Insomnia
  • Irritability
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Depression


People know the only way to get rid of these symptoms is to do more of the drug. Therefore, they often end up relapsing.

An effective detox program will provide a staff that oversees a patient throughout the detox process. They keep the patient as comfortable as possible and provide medications to reduce symptoms. This reduces the likelihood of relapse occurring.


Who Needs to Detox Before Rehab? 

Anyone that’s physically addicted to a drug will need to detox before going to rehab. However, some people will have a more difficult time than others going through detox. It depends on how long you were using the drug and how much of it you were taking. 


How to Detox Safely

Depending on the drug you are using, a medical professional may recommend that you quit using the drug completely, all at once, or they may wean you off the drug slowly. This is because some drugs cause a shock to the system, making it dangerous to go cold turkey. In any case, it’s always best to consult with a medical professional during the detox process. 

Here are some other helpful hints:

Detoxing inpatient vs. outpatient: You may be able to detox at home (outpatient), or you may prefer to do it in a rehab facility (inpatient). Inpatient detox is preferable if you do not have a healthy home environment. If you live in an abusive setting, you will be exposed to people that may encourage you to go back to using, making it difficult to get clean during this difficult stage of recovery. 

Engage in Healthy Activities: You can engage in several activities during the rehab process that will soothe and calm you, making detox less unpleasant. These include meditation, acupuncture, and yoga. Detoxing in a relaxed and comfortable environment will also be helpful. 

Take Medications: People have mixed feelings about taking medications, but during the detox process, they are a lot healthier than the drug you are detoxing from. They will assist in alleviating symptoms, making you less likely to relapse. 

It’s also advisable to get rid of the drug you are using, so it is no longer in your home, and follow a healthy diet and exercise routine to ensure comprehensive detox. 


How Refine Recovery Can Help

There are many facilities that offer detox in their programs, but it can be difficult to find the one that’s right for you. You must think of the price, the environment, the services offered and more. When you consider this, you will find that Refine Recovery detox center checks off all the boxes. 


Refine Recovery is in the upscale neighborhood of Beverly Hills, CA. We offer world-class, customized addiction treatment in Beverly Hills, high-quality care, and multiple paths to recovery. We provide a three-part detox, inpatient rehab, and aftercare planning program. 


While all the treatments we offer are important, detox is a core part of our recovery process. We provide 24/7 supervision and withdrawal management. We ensure that patients get through this difficult phase as comfortably as possible. 

Getting over an addiction isn’t easy, but an effective detox program can help. Refine Recovery offers a comprehensive process that ensures you are successful in getting past your dependency issues. Contact us for the care you need to move on to happier, healthier living.

What Are Benzo Withdrawal Symptoms?

What Are Benzo Withdrawal Symptoms?

Every year, approximately 40 million American adults are diagnosed with anxiety disorder. A commonly prescribed drug for the treatment of anxiety is benzodiazepines. This medication is used for other conditions as well. Unfortunately, an alarming number of people abuse and become addicted to benzos.


People who use benzodiazepines often develop a tolerance after taking high doses of the drug for an extended period of time. This tolerance can become more substantial, leading the user to feel the need to have higher doses in order to feel the effects. When a person stops using the drug, benzo withdrawal symptoms appear. These symptoms may affect people who have been prescribed the drug or those who abuse benzos without prescription.


What are Benzos?

Benzos, another name of benzodiazepines, are prescription depressant drugs used to treat several conditions. This type of drug works by enhancing the effect of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), a type of neurotransmitter. Neurotransmitters are chemicals within the brain that work to communicate messages between brain cells. The messages sent can initiate a calming or stimulating effect. GABA sends messages to the body that are calming. When a person experiences feelings of anxiety, overstimulation occurs in the brain. Benzos counter this by sending messages that reduce overstimulation, thus reducing symptoms of anxiety.


Many different types of benzos exist. They differ in terms of their uses, their potency, and how quickly they are absorbed by the body. The most common benzodiazepines are prescription medications, including Xanax, Valium, Klonopin, Ativan and Halcion.


Like many drugs, benzos come with potential side effects. The most common side effects of benzos include:

  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Depression
  • Confusion
  • Impaired coordination
  • Increased anxiety
  • Behavioral changes, including risk-taking
  • Memory problems
  • Delirium
  • Potential increased risk of dementia
  • Risk of dependence
  • Withdrawal symptoms


What are Benzos Used For?

Medically, benzos are typically prescribed to treat stress-related conditions, including anxiety disorders, epilepsy, insomnia, and even alcohol withdrawal. They are touted for their sedation and hypnosis effects in addition to their ability to reduce seizures, reduce anxiety and relieve muscle spasms. Benzos may also be used in preparation for some medical procedures.


Are Benzos Addictive?

According to research, benzos cause addiction in a way that is similar to other drugs, including opioids and cannabinoids. These drugs cause changes to the brain that increases levels of dopamine, which is a hormone that makes one feel happy. Repeated use of benzos is rewarding because it puts one in a happy mood.

Benzodiazepine abuse or addiction is described in the mental health community with the term hypnotic, sedative, or anxiolytic use disorder, which comes from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Health Disorders, 5th edition. A person must exhibit two of a possible 11 symptoms in a 12 month period in order to be diagnosed.

Signs of benzodiazepine addiction may include:

  • Continued use of benzos, despite risk to self or others
  • Denial of addiction
  • Complete loss of control over use of benzos
  • Exhibiting sudden changes in behavior


What are Benzo Withdrawal Symptoms?

A wide range of withdrawal symptoms can occur for people who stop using benzodiazepines. Cause benzos impact both the mind and body, benzo withdrawal symptoms do too. Benzo withdrawal symptoms may vary in severity, depending on the duration of a person’s use of the drug, the amount of dosage, and their method of ingestion. The level of physical dependency and addiction can play a part in the severity of symptoms, which may include:

  • Tremors
  • Dizziness
  • Panic and anxiety
  • Fatigue
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Impaired vision
  • Restlessness and agitation
  • Flushing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sweating
  • Muscle cramps
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Hallucinations
  • Seizures
  • Gastrointestinal problems
  • Muscle pain
  • Headaches
  • Feelings of unreality
  • Irritability and psychosis


How to Find Benzo Detox Programs in Beverly Hills, CA

It is best to detox from benzodiazepines under medical supervision. Addiction professionals at Refine Recovery employ established safety protocols, ensuring that all patients have the necessary resources for effective detoxification.

If you are struggling with benzo misuse yourself or believe your loved one is abusing benzodiazepines, learning about the different treatment options may be beneficial. At Refine Recovery, we offer individualized treatment programs in Beverly Hills for those who struggle with benzodiazepine addiction and are equipped to help with the throes of benzo withdrawal symptoms. Medically supervised detox, counseling with various behavioral therapies, and medication-assisted treatment are all important components of a well-rounded treatment program for the best results for benzo addiction. Reach out today to get the best chance at a successful recovery.