Increased Precautions We're Taking in Response to COVID-19
As updates on the impact of the coronavirus continue to be released, we want to take a moment to inform you of the heightened preventative measures we have put in place at Life Center of Galax to keep our patients, their families, and our employees safe. All efforts are guided by and in adherence to the recommendations distributed by the CDC.

Please note that for the safety of our patients, their families, and our staff, on-site visitation is no longer allowed at Life Center of Galax.

  • This restriction has been implemented in compliance with updated corporate and state regulations to further reduce the risks associated with COVID-19.
  • We are offering visitation through telehealth services so that our patients can remain connected to their loved ones.
  • Alternate methods of communication for other services are being vetted and may be offered when deemed clinically appropriate.

For specific information regarding these changes and limitations, please contact us directly.

CDC updates are consistently monitored to ensure that all guidance followed is based on the latest information released.

  • All staff has received infection prevention and control training.
  • Thorough disinfection and hygiene guidance has been provided.
  • Patient care supplies such as masks and hand sanitizer are being monitored and utilized.
  • Temperature and symptom screening protocols are in place for all patients and staff.
  • Social distancing strategies have been implemented to ensure that patients and staff maintain proper distance from one another at all times.
  • Cleaning service contracts have been reviewed for additional support.
  • Personal protective equipment items are routinely checked to ensure proper and secure storage.
  • CDC informational posters are on display to provide important reminders on proper infection prevention procedures.
  • We are in communication with our local health department to receive important community-specific updates.

The safety of our patients, their families, and our employees is our top priority, and we will remain steadfast in our efforts to reduce any risk associated with COVID-19.

The CDC has provided a list of easy tips that can help prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and then immediately dispose of the tissue.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces that are frequently touched.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care.

For detailed information on COVID-19, please visit https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

Meth Addiction Signs & Symptoms

Understanding Meth Addiction

Learn about meth addiction & abuse

Methamphetamine is a hazardous drug that is known to cause a great deal of devastation in the lives of those who abuse it.  Also referred to as meth, this highly addictive substance triggers the release of large quantities of dopamine in the user’s brain. When this type of chemical reaction occurs, a person under the influence of meth will experience a high that elicits feelings of relaxation and euphoria. These feelings, along with the painful withdrawal that is known to occur when a person is no longer high, are what can keep a person trapped in the vicious cycle of addiction.

As time presses on and a person’s tolerance for meth increases, there exists a constant risk for overdose. Additionally, prolonged abuse of this drug can negatively impact a person’s social, familial, and occupational life, leading to demise of relationships, isolation, and loss of employment. Furthermore, the mental and physical health of methamphetamine abusers decline over time, of which can make overcoming this addiction alone even more cumbersome. However, for those who wish to regain control over their lives and no longer wish to have their days dictated by an addiction to meth, there are effective treatment options in existence that can help lay the foundation for a bright future without the constraints of a meth abuse problem.

Statistics

Meth abuse statistics

After researching prevalence rates of methamphetamine abuse in the United States, researchers estimate that almost one million Americans have used meth at some point during their lifetime. Despite raised awareness pertaining to the dangers associated with meth abuse, these same researchers speculate that this number will rise. With regards to weekly usage of this highly-addictive substance, it was also found that 500,000 people in the United States abuse this substance on a weekly basis. Lastly, it is widely agreed by addiction experts that in order to overcome such an addiction, treatment must be sought from professionals in order to safely recovery from a meth abuse problem.

Causes & Risks

Causes and risk factors for meth abuse

There are several contributing factors that can influence whether or not a person will abuse substances, such as meth. The following explanations and risk factors for why and how an individual comes to abuse methamphetamine are widely accepted by addiction experts and mental health professionals who are highly-trained in treating individuals battling addiction concerns:

Genetic: Researchers have concluded that a person can possess a genetic predisposition to addiction if there exists a family history of substance abuse or addiction. This discovery was made when it was realized that individuals who share similar genes share the commonality of abusing substances, such as meth. Therefore, it can be said that one’s genetics can play an integral role in the development of a methamphetamine addiction.

Environmental: The environment in which a person is primarily exposed to can influence whether or not the abuse of meth will occur. If a person is exposed to drug abuse of this kind on an ongoing basis and, thus, has easy access to methamphetamine, there is an increased risk for abusing meth. Furthermore, if an individual has a personal history of exposure to trauma, abuse, neglect, violence, or crime and lacks the skills needed to cope with such experiences, a person has an elevated risk for abusing methamphetamine if the previously mentioned environmental exposures are present.

Risk Factors:

  • Having easy access to methamphetamine
  • Exposure to crime
  • Family history of substance abuse / addiction / dependence
  • Personal history of abusing other drugs or alcohol
  • Presence of mental health condition(s)
  • Exposure to violence
  • Peer pressure
  • Being surrounded by people who use meth
Signs & Symptoms

Signs and symptoms of meth abuse

There are number indications that can serve was warnings that a person is abusing methamphetamine. The obviousness of such indications is dependent on the severity and longevity of an individual’s addiction to this perilous drug. The following behavioral, physical, cognitive, and psycho-social symptoms are those that could be present when a person is battling an addiction to methamphetamine:

Behavioral symptoms:

  • Lethargy
  • Erratic behavior
  • Missing work
  • Unwarranted aggression
  • Rapid speech
  • Incessant talking
  • Hyperactivity
  • Lying
  • Engaging in criminal activity
  • Social withdrawal or isolation

Physical symptoms:

  • Increased blood pressure
  • Profuse sweating
  • Insomnia
  • Hypersomnia
  • Facial tics
  • Muscle spasms
  • Poor hygiene
  • Accelerated heart rate
  • Uncontrollable twitching
  • Foul body odor
  • Increase in body temperature
  • Appetite changes
  • Weight loss

Cognitive symptoms:

  • Paranoia
  • Confusion
  • Loss of sound judgment and reasoning
  • Memory loss
  • Learning difficulties
  • Hallucinations
  • Delusions

Psycho-social symptoms:

  • Irritability
  • Psychosis
  • Decreased interest in things once enjoyed
  • Extreme shifts in mood
  • Intense anxiety
  • Depression
  • Prolonged manic episodes
  • Agitation
Effects

Effects of meth abuse

Chronic and prolonged abuse of methamphetamine can wreak havoc on every area of a person’s life if treatment is not sought and implemented. Below are some examples of the adversities that are known to ensue when a person does not seek and receive treatment for a meth addiction:

  • Financial strife
  • Damaged relationships
  • Divorce
  • Homelessness
  • Irreparable cognitive impairment
  • Contracting viruses such as HIV/AIDS or Hepatitis C
  • Permanent damage to one’s immune system
  • Job loss
  • Sudden death
  • Changes to one physical appearance
Co-Occurring Disorders

Meth abuse & co-occurring disorders

A variety of mental health concerns are known to occur alongside addiction. With specific regards to a methamphetamine addiction, there are certain mental illnesses that are diagnosed in people with this type of substance use disorder. The following mental health disorders are those that are often found in those who abuse meth:

  • Bipolar disorder
  • Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder
  • Schizophrenia
  • Depressive disorders
  • Anxiety disorders

I came to Galax addicted to meth, but I left Galax as a brand new person.

– Kristin
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