Recovery Now News
  • How to Best Support Somebody Struggling with Opioid Addiction

    How to Best Support Somebody Struggling with Opioid Addiction

    Being around someone with an addiction to opioid medications can be a painful and intensely draining process. Seeing someone you care deeply about in such suffering and feeling they are wasting their lives poisoning themselves can be a huge struggle, and it may be easy to feel helpless against someone else's addiction.

  • Heroin Addiction Recovery in Zanzibar

    Heroin Addiction Recovery in Zanzibar

    How one man used the 12 step approach to change the way people look at recovery on the island.

    The Muslim island of Zanzibar is located in the Indian Ocean and is part of the nation of Tanzania.

  • What you need to know about Tapering off Suboxone

    What you need to know about Tapering off Suboxone

    Many people who have struggled with opioid painkiller addiction have experienced help from Soboxone, a medication that combines buprenorphine and naloxone to relieve withdrawal from other opioid medication, reduce cravings, and reduce the unapproved, mood altering and addicting effects of those drugs. However, Suboxone is itself a narcotic drug, that can pose great risk if misued.

  • The Dangers of Detox from Alcohol Addiction

    The Dangers of Detox from Alcohol Addiction

    One of the most important steps in recovering from alcohol addiction is successfully making it through the process of detoxifying from alcohol and clearing all chemical dependency from your system. It is crucial for every person to get through detox before entering rehab so that they are not dealing with physical addiction but rather the mental aspects of being sober.

  • Speaking about Struggles with Addiction can Help

    Speaking about Struggles with Addiction can Help

    Addiction thrives on denial and deception, on anything that clouds the truth about your internal tensions and self-destructive habits. As an addict, you are used to lying to others about what you are doing, and hiding your substance use from others.

  • Is it Possible that Poor Sleep Leads to Alcoholism?

    Is it Possible that Poor Sleep Leads to Alcoholism?

    A recent study regarding sleep difficulties discovered a number of issues that could be associated with poor sleeping habits including binge drinking, driving under the influence and risky sexual behavior. The connection between poor sleep and substance abuse is especially prevalent in the younger population.

  • Successful Pain Management in Recovery

    Successful Pain Management in Recovery

    Methods of pain relief have never been easier, more varied, or more effective than they are today. In the past, many people would have been totally unable to function under severe chronic pain, that is now capable of being managed.

  • Binge Drinking’s Direct Impact on the Immune System

    Binge Drinking’s Direct Impact on the Immune System

    Even though young people may not feel the same health effects that adults do after drinking regularly, the binge drinking habits of adults between ages 18-34 can still significantly impact their well-being. A new study has shown that when young adults engage in binge drinking it can disrupt their immune system.

  • Is AA vs. NA Just a Matter of Preference?

    Is AA vs. NA Just a Matter of Preference?

    The Twelve-step program is both the oldest and among the most well-known programs in the modern recovery moment, and has helped thousands and thousands of people from all over the world work through their addiction and successfully journey towards sobriety. Using a model of peer support groups who work through a program together, it helps addicts seeking recovery recognize their need for help, surrender to a "higher power" (which can be either a form of spirituality, or the communal connections within the group itself), and get the strength to pursue continued healing for themselves and reconciliation to others hurt by the addiction.

  • Mending Relationships in Recovery

    Mending Relationships in Recovery

    Battling an addiction takes its toll on a person's mind, body, and spirit. Fortunately those things can be healed during the recovery process.

  • Explaining Alcohol Addiction and Alcoholism

    Explaining Alcohol Addiction and Alcoholism

    If you are struggling with alcohol addiction it can be very easy to feel lost, isolated and misunderstood. Our society has many misconceptions about alcoholism, and it may feel that many people simply consider your addiction a character defect, judging you or confused about why you can't simply "control yourself."

  • The Struggles Of Kicking Heroin Addiction

    The Struggles Of Kicking Heroin Addiction

    With 25 to 30 million people in America today battling a drug or alcohol addiction it's hard to believe that recovery can be possible, but it can be done. There's no doubt that beating an addiction is a hard process, one that requires work, motivation, focus, and strength among other things.

  • Coping With The Stress Of Drug Addiction Recovery

    Coping With The Stress Of Drug Addiction Recovery

    Recovery from an addiction is more than just an accomplishment - it's an ongoing process that requires focus and effort in so many ways. Without a continued dedication to doing the work required to stay sober, the risk of a relapse becomes very real.

  • Can being Active Lower your Risk of Alcoholism?

    Can being Active Lower your Risk of Alcoholism?

    Alcoholism has affected and continues to affect countless people, who come to the disease from every background imaginable. No background is immune from the possibility of this deeply debilitating and potentially harmful genetic condition that makes someone especially vulnerable to abusing alcohol seemingly involuntarily, and so it may easy to feel powerless and even hopeless.

  • The Dangers of Self-Medication for Issues of Mental Health

    The Dangers of Self-Medication for Issues of Mental Health

    It's very common for someone to use drugs or alcohol as a way to deal with emotional problems. They may not even be aware that drinking or getting high helps numb or block out the overwhelming feelings they are having until it's too late.

  • What are your Options for Treatment for Alcoholism?

    What are your Options for Treatment for Alcoholism?

    Alcohol addiction is a very intense and all-consuming problem that requires a multi-pronged plan of attack in order to know how to deal with it. A judgmental outsider may think it's easy to simply decide to stop drinking, but the truth is that alcoholism is an all-consuming disease and habit that dramatically affects all areas of your life.

  • Is A Drug Addiction Treatment Ban Responsible for Dying Ukrainians?

    Is A Drug Addiction Treatment Ban Responsible for Dying Ukrainians?

    In January, it was reported that around 100 drug abuse patients in the formerly Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea had died because the substitution treatment they had been undergoing was now illegal under newly placed Russian laws. This is only a small percentage of the estimated 800 drug users in Crimea who were undergoing the treatment.

  • The Mantra of Living One Day at a Time

    The Mantra of Living One Day at a Time

    When you encounter other people struggling with recovery, in a support group, you may often hear the phrase "One Day at a Time." By this they mean, keeping your attention on the present moment.

  • Helping Your Alcoholic Family Members

    Helping Your Alcoholic Family Members

    One of the most painful experiences in life is watching a friend or family member with an alcohol problem. It's not easy to stand by and see someone you love destroy their health, relationships, and career.

  • The Plight of the Late Bloomer in Recovery

    The Plight of the Late Bloomer in Recovery

    Achieving sobriety is all about giving someone a second chance at a healthy, more fulfilling life. That's why it's not uncommon to find many "late bloomers" in recovery.

  • Facing the Fact that You Have a Problem with Alcohol and Drugs

    Facing the Fact that You Have a Problem with Alcohol and Drugs

    The first thing you have to do to address a drug or alcohol problem is admit that you have one. Sounds pretty simple, but it's actually the most difficult part of recovery for many people. If you're quite sure that you have a problem, there are several signs you can look for.

  • What’s the Difference When Identifying as an Addict or Alcoholic?

    What’s the Difference When Identifying as an Addict or Alcoholic?

    People who attend AA meetings may feel that they must identify as both an alcoholic and an addict if they have a problem with drugs as well as alcohol. They could also feel that they have to choose one term or the other since the problems are separated in different meetings through twelve step programs.

  • Staying Connected to the Your Program with Open Communication

    Staying Connected to the Your Program with Open Communication

    One of the foundations and most important aspects of addiction recovery is for addicts to remain honest and open throughout their time in rehab. A program will not be effective for a patient if they are reluctant to engage in open communication with their peers and the therapists and counselors that are there to support them.

  • Acceptance of Addiction and Alcoholism Provides Relief

    Acceptance of Addiction and Alcoholism Provides Relief

    Addiction is a disease that can lead people to experience a powerful sense of denial for many years before they recognize their own problem. People who are alcoholics may think they have their drinking under control or that they can simply cut down or quit at any time.

  • Dealing with the Emotions that Addiction Recovery Brings

    Dealing with the Emotions that Addiction Recovery Brings

    Although it can be cathartic to finally quit an addiction, for most people in recovery there will be plenty of emotional ups and downs especially in the first few months of entering rehab. Addiction recovery is a very difficult but rewarding path for people who have spent years of their lives coping with alcohol or drug dependency.

  • Identifying with others in Recovery can Save Your Life

    Identifying with others in Recovery can Save Your Life

    Recovery from addiction can easily become an overwhelming process. It involves unlearning a habit you have spent many hours unconsciously developing. It is going without the very thing you thought you could not live without.

  • Understanding Why Addiction Attracts Lower Companions

    Understanding Why Addiction Attracts Lower Companions

    Songs, literature, and movies frequently glamorizes drug and alcohol use, often showing the "highs" and "fun" without drawing attention to the hard realities of an addicted life. This leads many people to view a lifestyle of substance abuse and addiction in unrealistic ways, assuming it's the gateway to a fun lifestyle filled with interesting people and exciting adventures.

  • How to Handle an Aggressive Person under the Influence

    How to Handle an Aggressive Person under the Influence

    Drinking and drug use can radically alter a person's behavior and character. Almost everyone occasionally has moments where they feel angry or frustrated at someone else's behavior, but most people are able to vent their anger in relatively helpful ways, by communicating with the person involved, expressing your hurt or disappointment with a supportive friend, or finding outlets to "let off steam."

  • Josh Gordon Responds to Critics Regarding Addiction

    Josh Gordon Responds to Critics Regarding Addiction

    In January, TNT sports analyst Charles Barkley spoke publicly about his concern for NFL player Josh Gordon. The Cleveland Browns wide receiver had failed yet another mandatory drug test and was moving ever closer to a one year suspension.

  • First Canadian National Addiction Recovery Summit Held

    First Canadian National Addiction Recovery Summit Held

    In an effort to reduce the stigma surrounding addiction and work toward better treatment options, Ottawa held its first Canadian National Recovery Summit. This meeting organized by the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse was a part of a campaign to bring more awareness to people in recovery and give them a chance to feel that they are accepted and understood by society.

  • What Is Going On In The Life Of Kurt Busch?

    What Is Going On In The Life Of Kurt Busch?

    Recent news involving the ongoing drama between NASCAR driver Kurt Busch and ex girlfriend Patricia Driscoll now includes allegations of alcoholism and depression. In December, Driscoll testified in a hearing over an incident of physical abuse by Busch during their 4 year relationship and described him as a man struggling with severe depression who abused alcohol to deal with his problems.

  • Jon Jones Doesn’t Have a Drug Problem

    Jon Jones Doesn’t Have a Drug Problem

    Ultimate Fighting champion Jon Jones recently opened up about his drug use in an interview and discussed his time in rehab and how it impacted his life. Jones has asserted in the past that he never had a drug problem but his recent cocaine use ran him into trouble with the UFC when he was caught through a drug test.

Binge Drinking

Binge drinking = 5 or more drinks in one sitting for a man and 4 or more drinks in one sitting for a woman.

Binge drinking is defined as the consumption of 5 or more alcoholic beverages at one time, for an adult male, and 4 or more for an adult female, at least once during the preceding two-week period. The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) adds that binge drinking includes a person reaching a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) of 0.08 or higher, which usually occurs when four or five drinks are consumed within two hours.

The NIAAA reports that one in every six adults in the United States binge drinks around four times every month, consuming an average of eight drinks per binge.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report the following statistics on binge drinking:

  1. Of all adults in the U.S. who drink excessively, approximately 92% have engaged in binge drinking within the last 30 days.
  2. Over 50% of all alcohol consumption in the U.S. is done in a binge drinking manner.
  3. Men report binge drinking twice as often as women.
  4. Binge drinkers admit to alcohol-impaired or drunk driving 14 times more than those who do not binge drink.
  5. Even though binge drinking is most common in the 18-34 age bracket (binge drinking four times each month), those who are 65 and older actually binge drink more often, estimated at five or six times each month.
  6. Income affects binge drinking rates: In households making at least $75,000, binge drinking is much more prevalent than in households earning a lower income.
  7. While binge drinking is most often associated with college students, 70% of all binge episodes actually occur among people aged 26 years and older.
  8. 67% of male sexual aggressors, and 50% of their victims, had been drinking at the time of the attack and sexual assault.

Alcohol is a dangerous drug, the effects of which are greatly overlooked. Drinking to the point of intoxication, binge drinking, and reaching the 0.08 BAC limit are exposing a person to great physical damage, disturbances in mental health, financial despair, strained relationships, loss of work, failure in school or other professional attempts, and legal ramifications.

Binge drinking as a pattern of alcohol consumption will progress to these dangerous levels when changes are not made.

Race is a factor in how often someone binge drinks. Whether the influence is based on genetics or on cultural norms, race does play a part in binge drinking habits.  

Members of the Caucasian (white, non-Hispanic) race have the most incidences of binge drinking at 43.8%, followed by members of the Native American race at 40.6%, those who are any part Hispanic at 31.3%, people who are any part Asian at 22.7%, and members of the African-American, or black, race at 22.5%.

Another factor is age. People under the age of 21 report a higher amount of binge drinking than those older than 21. Young people who consume large quantities of alcohol often face serious consequences related to their binge drinking behaviors. Increased involvement in property damage, problems with law enforcement, poor performance in or absence from school or at work, incidents of physical injury, cases of sexual assault, engaging in risky sexual activity, and contracting a sexually transmitted disease are all likely when binge drinking. 

Additional factors associated with binge drinking include: heredity, perception of peer alcohol consumption, personal perception of drinking, history of binge drinking, social affiliations, and peer alcohol usage. These factors contribute to the likelihood of heavy alcohol abuse.

For more information on binge drinking, or to find help for yourself or for someone you love, contact Recovery Now TV at 800-281-4731. Information, resources, and referrals are available for every level of alcohol use.

College Binge Drinking

90% of all underage drinking is done in binge drinking patterns.

On several college campuses, 70% of all students engage in binge drinking behaviors. Nationwide, 40% of male college students, and 31% of female college students, report binge drinking within the 2 weeks prior to being surveyed. Additionally, about 90% of all alcohol consumption by anyone under the legal drinking age of 21 is done so in a binge drinking fashion.

Binge drinking contributes to 1,400 deaths, 500,000 injuries, and 70,000 incidents of unwilling sexual assault annually on college campuses throughout the United States.

Binge drinking is disconcerting, not only for the potential harm to the drinker, but also for the potential harm to other people. Deadly car crashes, late night interruptions, physical and sexual assaults, and emotional abuse are just some of the ways a person who has been consuming large amounts of alcohol can affect others.

Binge drinking is even more prevalent among members of the Greek system and among student athletes than any other group of college students.

The College Alcohol Survey (CSA) of the School of Public Health studied college binge drinking and used a few different criteria to determine abuse of alcohol among college students and the formation of dependence upon alcohol while enrolled in college.

Examples of criteria used to determine alcohol abuse:

  1. Experiencing hazardous situations (physical, emotional, mental)
  2. Alcohol related school problems
  3. Interpersonal problems
  4. Legal problems
  5. Continuing to binge drink after a consequence has occurred

Examples of criteria used to determine dependence on alcohol:

  1. Spending excessive time engaged in drinking related activities
  2. Uncontrollable drinking (consuming more than planned or desired)
  3. Symptoms of high tolerance (needing more alcohol to feel the same effects)
  4. Symptoms of withdrawal when drinking stops

Because the college age bracket often think of themselves as too young to have a problem with alcohol, college students who binge drink rarely seek treatment for their dependence on or abuse of alcohol. This erroneous mentality contributes to the high rates of death, assault, and injury directly related to binge drinking on college campuses each year.

Treatment, counseling, and support groups, including involvement in a 12 Step Program, are extremely beneficial to a drinker who regularly binge drinks. In some cases, a college student need an intervention, at which point his or her family steps in to encourage abstinence and formal treatment for alcohol abuse. 

If you or someone you love is binge drinking in college, intervening before alcohol abuse progresses to addiction can be the difference between a life-long battle with alcohol and steps taken now to stop that progression.

To find out more, call Recovery Now TV today at 800-281-4731. Stop binge drinking from ruining your life, or the life of someone you love. Call today!

Alcohol & The Human Body

Approximately 30% of all hospital admissions are for the direct or indirect result of alcohol consumption.

A 23-year-old college peer counselor offers his perspective on binge drinking:

It’s no mystery why guys in college fraternities, many of whom don’t have all that much money, still come up with plenty of money to have outrageous amounts of alcohol and let any woman in for free. The whole point is they’re setting up an environment whereby people are going to get more drunk. Women’s inhibitions and a guy’s inhibitions are going to get lowered.

The desire to get drunk and to lower inhibitions does not seem like a problem: “it’s what all college kids do.” The truth is, college students do not understand what alcohol is actually doing to their bodies and brains when consumed in excess.

Alcohol is essentially a poison to the human body and brain. When alcohol enters the body, an enzyme called alcohol dehydrogenase is produced to counteract the harmful substance. The body starts working immediately to break down alcohol before it can reach the bloodstream.

The alcohol dehydrogenase enzyme is used to turn alcohol into acetaldehyde, which is toxic to the digestive system, and most importantly, to the the liver. From there, the use of the acetaldehyde dehydrogenase enzyme breaks acetaldehyde down into acetic acid, which can then be oxidized into carbon dioxide and into water.

When alcohol is consumed in a binge drinking manner, the body does not have time to break down enough of the alcohol to prevent dangerous intoxication. A binge drinker’s Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) can reach such high levels that blackouts (periods where nothing is remembered even though the person is conscious), alcohol poisoning, and overdose death have no choice but to occur. The body and the brain do not know another way to handle this much alcohol in its system.

The CDC reports that binge drinking creates the following physical risks:

  1. Unintentional injuries (e.g., car crashes, falls, burns, drowning)
  2. Intentional injuries (e.g., firearm injuries, sexual assault, domestic violence)
  3. Alcohol poisoning
  4. Sexually transmitted diseases
  5. Unintended pregnancy
  6. Children born with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders
  7. High blood pressure, stroke, and other cardiovascular diseases
  8. Liver disease
  9. Neurological damage
  10. Sexual dysfunction
  11. Poor control of diabetes
When binge drinking is causing any physical or life-altering consequences, a problem exists. For more information on how you can intervene in the progression to alcoholism, call Recovery Now TV today at 800-281-4731.

Alcohol Use, Abuse, & Addiction

80% of all alcohol is consumed by 20% of people who drink.
With alcohol I was out of control because I would drink to the point where I didn’t know what I was doing, which made it easier for the man to do whatever he wanted and my not realizing it until the next day or the next morning when I woke up and didn’t have any recollection of what happened.

Sadly, this girl’s story is all too common among college students who engage in binge drinking. Thousands of college girls end up in unwanted sexual situations that lead to emotional damage, unplanned pregnancies, and unknown sexually transmitted diseases (STD).

For men, what seems like consensual sex may not actually be a fully-conscious partner. Contracting an STD, getting a girl pregnant, or being accused of rape serve as very real consequences, equally as detrimental to his future as those of a female binge drinker.

When binge drinking continues, even after an adverse life consequence has occurred because of the person’s drinking, alcohol use has reached the point of abuse.

A 15-year-old high school dropout, engaged in alcohol abuse, continued to drink after a life consequence:

I always got Bs and then my grades dropped down to Ds, and then I started failing my classes, and I skipped school, and I got suspended all the time for that when I got caught. I’d skip school and I’d go get drunk, or we’d just skip it because we were always drunk.

When alcohol abuse continues, despite even greater life consequences, plus a loss of control over drinking, an obsession with drinking, a denial of any problem with alcohol, and any effort to stop drinking ending in a binge occurs, abuse has progressed to addiction.

10% to 12% of the total 140 million drinkers in the United States have reached the point of alcoholism. This means that 14 to 17 million people are currently addicted to alcohol.

Alcoholism is an addiction to alcohol. Although legal, alcohol is no less addicting or damaging than illicit drugs like cocaine, heroin, and prescription painkillers. Life consequences are just as likely, and long-term damage is equally inevitable.

An indication of addiction is the presence of withdrawal symptoms when drinking stops.

A 32-year-old recovering female alcoholic shares her experience with alcohol withdrawal:

Your body is going through so many changes, you can hardly breathe; you’re shaking. A hangover, yeah, you might be sick for a couple of hours. That’s different than withdrawals; but with withdrawals, it will kill you.

Generally, within 24 hours of cessation from alcohol, the following symptoms occur:

  1. Rapid pulse
  2. Sweating
  3. Increased body temperature
  4. Hand tremors
  5. Anxiety
  6. Depression
  7. Insomnia
  8. Nausea or vomiting
  9. Tachycardia (irregular heartbeat)
  10. Transient visual, tactile, or auditory hallucinations and illusions
  11. Psychomotor agitation
  12. Grand mal seizures
  13. Delirium tremens

When a binge drinker experiences any of these symptoms, withdrawal cannot be done safely without medical attention. Alcohol withdrawal can be fatal and must take place in a formal detoxification treatment center where professional staff continuously monitor each client’s progress.

Binge drinking will progress to abuse and addiction when not properly stopped and treated. For referrals to alcohol detox and formal treatment facilities, call Recovery Now TV at 800-281-4731. The team is ready to help!

How Alcoholism Can Begin

Up to 86% of all college binge drinkers started these patterns in high school.
I was a city kid and was pretty much a standard rite of passage when you’re 12, 13, or 14 to, you know, one way or another get your hands on a six-pack for a Saturday night - and that’s how drinking started for all of us in my neighborhood.

- The story of a 22-year-old recovering alcoholic.

The Monitoring the Future Study, conducted by the University of Michigan, with funding with the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), a division of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), found that 6.2% of all eighth graders, in the United States, had been drunk within the last 30 days. 18.8% of high school tenth graders, and 30% of all twelfth graders, also reported being drunk at least once in the last month. The percentages for daily alcohol use were much lower (0.5% of 8th graders, 1.3% of 10th graders, and 3.1% of 12th graders), revealing that high school students engage in binge drinking behaviors.

During the adolescent and early teenage years, the most emotional growth is occurring. When alcohol is used or abused during these formative years, emotional growth is then stunted, and various aspects of body and brain chemistry are impaired.

Since 44% of all college students admit to binge drinking at least once in a two-week time period, and drinking is starting in high school, the need for education and true prevention is vital to keep the youngest members of our society from destroying their lives and their health.

Binge drinking in college seems to have reached a place of social acceptance. “It’s what college students do,” but why?

One college junior shares the aspect of peer pressure contributing to binge drinking:

We drank quite a bit in my dorm, and, generally, when someone came into my dorm room on a weekend night, you had to take a bong - a beer bong. And we’d have the funnel that held like two and a half beers, and it was just the rule. We kinda pressured people to keep up, like you had to stay with the crowd.

Shauna Quinn, a drug and alcohol counselor at California State University, shares her take on college binge drinking:

Often it’s the style of drinking, not experimentation, that gets college students in trouble. Many think the name of the game is to get drunk. They drink too fast, they drink without eating, they play drinking games or contests; they binge drink. But because they drink heavily only once or twice a week, they think that there is no problem. But there usually is a problem: lower grades, disciplinary action, or behavior they regret, which usually means sexual behavior.

Binge drinking among college students is a major problem and needs to be addressed on a macro level. Several college campuses have taken the “dry” approach, where zero alcohol is permitted on campus grounds. The problem, though, is that bars and clubs are available just a block away from campus lines.

If you, or someone you love, is engaged in binge drinking, call Recovery Now TV at 800-281-4731 to find out what approach is best to stop the progression of binge drinking to life-threatening alcoholism.