As the only state capital in the contiguous United States that borders an ocean shoreline, Boston, Massachusetts is a beautiful destination for visitors and residents alike. With a population of 680,000 people, Boston is able to boast being host to Harvard University, Boston Scientific, Fenway Park, and a list of popular historic sites related to the American Revolution.
Along with these popular attractions, however, lies a darker side to the famous city. The opioid epidemic has swept Boston, taking over 600 lives in its wake due to overdose deaths. Massachusetts Avenue, nicknamed “Methadone Mile”, is notorious for hosting open drug deals and trades once the sun goes down. The city is no stranger to alcoholism and other drug addiction as well.
There is hope, however, for individuals suffering from drug abuse and addiction who want to seek help.
With over 30 facilities specializing in residential drug rehabilitation, medical detox, and stabilization, you don’t need to travel far to find professional help. Researching what type of rehab is right for you and which facility fits your needs best is the key to a successful recovery.
Drug Detox Near Boston
Recommended for certain types of addiction, medical detox is a safe and controlled way to detox your body from drug dependency. Only certain types of substance abuse are recommended for medical detox, including opioid addiction, alcohol dependence, and benzodiazepine addiction. For these types of addictions, detox will be the first step in recovery and will safely rid your system of the drugs.
This process is prescribed for patients with a prolonged dependence on drugs with life-threatening withdrawal symptoms. These programs utilize primarily medical approaches, such as administering drugs like naloxone for example. This is to ensure the drug is flushed from your system with minimal negative side effects. These side effects, or symptoms withdrawal, can include:
- Hand and muscle shakes
- Night sweats and night terrors
- Quick to anger or agitation
- Auditory and visual hallucinations
- Nausea and vomiting
- Weight loss due to malnutrition
- Phantom pains in extremities
- Seizures leading to coma or possibly death
This type of detox is not for all addictions, and typically won’t be covered by insurance for addictions that do not have life-threatening withdrawal symptoms.
Boston Area Inpatient Programs
A vital step in the rehabilitation process, inpatient addiction rehab allows patients to reside in the actual facility which provides them with support and physician supervision in a controlled environment. The ability to remove a patient entirely from the stressors and triggers they experienced in their previous environment. This aspect contributes significantly to the success of an inpatient client.
Different programs and types of addiction will cause stay length to vary, but generally patients will complete a program ranging from 30-90 days in length. The ability to remove a patient from many of the temptations that surrounded their addiction is one of the reasons this step is considered to be such an essential part of recovery. While you making be looking for a rehab center in Boston, a facility outside of the area may be a better option to
Outpatient Programs Near Boston
Intensive outpatient programs are meant to offer extended support to individuals who are transitioning from rehab back into their normal lives. This kind of program can be an essential part of the rehabilitation process, as it can be a crutch to lean on when day-to-day life brings back some of the old triggers and stressors of your addiction.
Transitioning from rehab to an outpatient program in Boston allows you to go back to work and live at home. You can also take behaviors and techniques learned during treatment and apply them to your life back at home. You will also be able to care for your children and spend time with family and friends, which can help to provide a full network of support for your recovery.
Outpatient is often covered by insurance, and any meetings or events that are sponsored by your program tend to be held on weeknights or weekends so you are able to continue living a normal life.
The intent of these programs is to offer support on your toughest days, and encouragement and congratulations for your milestones. Often times the network of support you build through an outpatient program will remain with you for life.
Commonly Abused Drugs In Boston
Heroin Addiction in Boston
As a powerful opioid and narcotic, heroin holds a very high potential for addiction. Overdose deaths resulting from heroin and other opioids took nearly 200 lives in the city alone last year. Boston has been hit heavily by the opioid epidemic, consequently leading more and more lives into the grasp of heroin once prescription opioids are either unattainable or unaffordable.
Heroin is generally a last step on the road of opioid addiction, as an easily accessible replacement for the prescriptions they once took.
New restrictions on opioid prescriptions have been put in place to help fight against the opioid epidemic in Massachusetts, along with additional rehab centers and halfway houses.
Alcohol Addiction in Boston
Alcohol accounted for 31% of drug rehab admissions in 2015, making up more than a third of the population’s substance abuse issues. As a drug that is legal and easily accessible to those who are of age, alcohol abuse is a common addiction in the city. According to Massachusetts law, drivers with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08% or higher are considered to be driving drunk.
Last year Boston police made 241 arrests for drunk driving within the city’s limits, which is a commonality with individuals who suffer from alcohol abuse and alcoholism. Numerous arrests were also made for having an open container of alcohol in the vehicle while driving as well as driving under the influence of alcohol in combination with other drugs. While these arrests have been declining over the past few years, Massachusetts still maintains a strict stance on alcohol control and continues with an aggressive campaign about the dangers of alcohol and addiction.
Benzodiazepine Addiction in Boston
Commonly prescribed to treat anxiety and insomnia, benzodiazepines prescriptions have been on the rise over the past decade. Commonly sold brands include Xanax, Valium, Klonopin, and Restoril appear everywhere in ads and on TV. Like many large cities, Boston has seen an increase in the number of rehab admissions for benzodiazepine addiction in correlation with the increase in benzodiazepine prescriptions.
But a group of Boston residents are fighting back through a bill known as Bill H4062: Informed Consent for Benzodiazepines and Non-benzodiazepine Hypnotics. This bill was drafted in an attempt to protect patients against misinformation or a lack of information regarding the potential risks of benzodiazepines. The bill argues that dependency and other permanent effects on the body can occur even if a patient takes the drug exactly as prescribed. Supporters of the bill are demanding full transparency and informed consent regarding the potential dangers of the drug so that patients are able to make an informed decision on how to treat their anxiety or insomnia.
Those opposing this bill have lobbied academic and practicing psychiatrists to speak out against the bill, stating it ‘singled’ benzodiazepines out against other drugs and also increased the stigma that patients suffering from anxiety already struggle with.
Although the bill has not yet passed, supporters hope that it will eventually help educate patients to advocate for their own health and fight back against benzodiazepine addiction in Boston.
Cocaine and Crack Cocaine in Boston
Cocaine trade runs rampant among Boston’s nightlife and the party habits of its wealthier residents. Often referred to as ‘a rich man’s drug’, cocaine is known for being a common presence at parties in upscale bars and nightclubs and the homes of Boston’s A-listers. Cocaine is often snorted, but can be melted and injected for a more intense and immediate high as well. Crack is a very similar drug to cocaine chemically, and can produce similar results. Crack is considered a ‘free base’ cocaine, meaning it is mixed with a base such as baking soda to remove the HCL that is in the cocaine.
Socially speaking, however, crack and cocaine are two very different drugs. Where cocaine will appeal to the wealthier crowd, crack is a drug of choice for low-income or minority groups. Cost is a major factor in this, and crack is a much more cost effective choice over cocaine. Drug criminalization in Boston has had a big effect on this as well, which has imprisoned thousands of offenders only to release them back into the addiction years later.
Decriminalizing schedule I and II drugs like heroin, crack, and cocaine has become a big focus for the fight against drugs in Boston.
Social justice groups in support of racial equality, such as Black Lives Matter, have openly opposed the criminalization of drugs in the United States stating that criminalization of drugs racially profiles black Americans and continues the cycle of systematic oppression. Some medical professionals have even spoken out against the criminalization of drugs, such as clinical pharmacist Jenni Stein, hoping to fight against drugs like crack and cocaine through education and rehabilitation, not jail time.
Vertava Health Massachusetts
As a leader in drug and alcohol rehabilitation, Vertava Health Massachusetts has provided customizable rehabilitation programs to citizens of Massachusetts and the surrounding region.
Vertava Health Massachusetts is dedicated to your sobriety, and for that reason many of their programs are customizable to fit your needs and expectations. There are a variety of clinical approaches used across the programs, which gives you more power when it comes to tailoring a program specifically to you. Upon completion of an inpatient program, Vertava Health Massachusetts can get you set up with an aftercare program and help you find housing that will continue your recovery, not inhibit it.
If you or a loved one suffers from addiction, the first step is professional help. If you would like to learn more about the programs and services offered at Vertava Health Massachusetts call us today. Your call is always confidential, and our addiction treatment specialists are available to talk around the clock. Start your journey to recovery today.