Category Archives: addiction treatment

PACE Recovery Celebrates 10 Years of “Changing Everything”

September 17th marks ten years of PACE Recovery Center. For the past decade, our cutting-edge, evidence-based programming has helped over 1,000 young men turn their lives around. We would like to take this opportunity to celebrate our staff, our programs, and the history of PACE Recovery.

A Decade of Life-Changing Care

PACE is actually an acronym—when broken down, it contains our motto: Positive Attitude Changes Everything. That’s exactly what we’ve been doing since our founding in 2012. Helmed by Founder and Executive Director Lenny Segal, MSW, MBA. PACE Recovery Center offers a variety of programs tailored to the needs of young men in Southern California and beyond.  

From the very beginning, PACE’s recovery team strove to become one of the top drug and alcohol treatment centers in the country. Their dedication and clinical expertise began making waves in the community almost immediately. Word spread, and just two weeks after our grand opening, the house had already filled (and so had the waiting list). This rapid expansion catalyzed the opening of another facility. Today, we have five residential properties that are all state licensed and CARF accredited. PACE is licensed to treat both primary mental health and substance use disorder. To offer our clients the complete continuum of care, we also run several outpatient programs.

As the years passed, PACE helped more and more men struggling with addiction and behavioral health issues. This continuous growth inspired the creation of niche programming unrivaled by any other center in the country.

Unique Programs to Treat the Whole Person

As PACE began dealing with more clients, leadership sought to dig deeper, treating the variety of external factors affecting those hoping to overcome addiction. Men were particularly vulnerable to substance use disorder after a significant loss or traumatic event, for example. They also experienced difficulties as children of adoption, overwhelmed students, and young men with undiagnosed mental illnesses.

To overcome these obstacles, PACE Recovery Center expanded its treatment team to include industry-leading specialists like Neuropsychologist Joanna Savarese, PhD; DBT Therapist Lisa Bahar, M.A., LMFT, LPCC; Nutritionist Kim Conrad, CPT; and Adoption Trauma Expert Brett Furst, PsyD, LMFT. Other staff additions include Clinical Director Will Sanchez, LMFT, SEP; Director of Mental Health Samantha Meyer, PhD; Clinical Psychologist Helen O’Mahony, PhD; and a vast network of primary therapists whose work focuses on trauma, grief, and other niche areas.

We now have a team of 65 employees who support our clients and their families. Together, these clinicians and staff members provide the structure and know-how necessary for in-depth, effective treatment.

Unique programs offered at PACE Recovery include:

  • Inpatient mental health care: The highest possible level of care for those struggling with depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, conduct disorder, and other severe mental illnesses.
  • PACE Academy: A path for young men seeking to succeed in their academic pursuits, including preparation for high school, GED testing, community college, four-year university programs, graduate school, and CAADAC certification.
  • Adoption-related treatment: Addresses the unhealthy coping mechanisms and inconsistent attachment styles common to men adopted as children.
  • Trauma-first programming: Helps clients to process unresolved traumatic events (whether recent or in the distant past).
  • Relapse prevention: Both our longer-term programming and clinical interventions are designed to aid those who have recently used drugs or alcohol after a period of sobriety.

PACE Recovery: Southern California’s Top Addiction Treatment Center

After ten years of clinical excellence, PACE’s team looks forward to a bright future.

“The last ten years have been nothing short of amazing. In my wildest dreams, I never could have forecasted the successes we have had. My motto—which I heard when I got sober 23 years ago—is to do the next right thing. I will continue to practice this for our next ten years. I am incredibly humbled by my amazing treatment team, many of whom have been with me since our inception, and by the professionals and families who have entrusted PACE with their clients and loved ones.”

 – Lenny Segal, MSW, MBA
Executive Director and Founder of PACE Recovery Center

PACE Recovery Center offers a truly innovative, highly effective approach to addiction treatment and mental health care. As we celebrate the tenth anniversary of our founding, we hope that this observance will encourage more young men to find recovery within our walls. No matter what challenge your family is facing, we’re here to help, 24/7. Contact us today to learn more.

Can You Get Addicted to Benadryl?

What is Benadryl?

Benadryl, also called diphenhydramine, is an antihistamine commonly taken to relieve symptoms of allergies, hay fever and the common cold. The symptoms it combats include skin rashes, watery or itchy eyes, itchy nose or throat, coughing and sneezing. It is also used to treat symptoms of motion sickness such as nausea, vomiting and dizziness.

The US Food and Drug Administration has warned about taking high doses of the drug, as heavy use could result in “serious heart problems, seizures, coma, or even death.” Fatal cases have been reported from those taking more than 20mg/kg. Increasingly, young adults are abusing Benadryl, becoming addicted and are faced with these risks along with mental instability and toxic psychosis.

Dangers of High Doses

 At high doses, users report troubling hallucinations and several have warned about the incidences of mental instability and psychosis caused by Benadryl.  In 2020 a “Benadryl Challenge” on TikTok started trending among teens and young adults to induce these hallucinations. What teens and young adults don’t consider is that the dose they’re taking to  are hallucinate could be life-threatening. Several have been hospitalized and a 15 year old Oklahoman teen who died from the challenge made headlines in 2020.

Yes, Benadryl Can Be Addictive

According to this literary article from the National Library of Medicine, abusers of antihistamines, particularly diphenhydramine, have been shown to exhibit withdrawal symptoms from the drug after heavy use.

There are several first-hand accounts of the drug’s addictiveness as well. One Redditor who tried the drug to combat depression and insomnia commented that they had developed a dependency on diphenhydramine, leading to a diagnosis of sedative dependency disorder.

Benadryl is not the only drug with harmful side effects and addictive properties. For this reason, it’s important to know about the medicines you’re taking, and the risks involved in seemingly harmless drugs.

Warning for Parents

For parents, it’s important to know how to properly store medicines to keep children safe. Check out the FDA’s guide “Think it Through: Managing the Benefits and Risks of Medicines” for more information on drug risk assessment and management.

If your young adult loved ones needs help, Contact Us at PACE Recovery Center to learn about our addiction and mental health programs for young adults.

Adoption and Addiction

PACE Recovery Center is proud to work with expert clinicians who specialize in issues that contribute to substance use disorder. Our own Brett Furst, PsyD, LMFT was recently published by the prestigious National Council for Adoption in this June’s Adoption Advocate. His paper, “The Intersection of Adoption and Addiction,” covers the link between adoption, attachment issues, trauma and the eventual development of a substance use disorder. Below is a brief summary of Dr. Furst’s paper; to read the complete publication, please visit the link at the bottom of this article.

Deciding to open your heart and home to a child by becoming an adoptive parent is one of the most selfless things you can do. Parents of adoptive children may encounter many unique parenting challenges, especially when taking in older children like adolescents. One of these could be the intersection of adoption and addiction.

What Is the Link Between Adoption and Addiction?

Research shows that adoptees are almost twice as likely to have substance use disorders as those who were not adopted. Addiction is a complex illness with many interconnected risk factors, including genetics and environment. Parental substance abuse is a primary reason children enter the foster system. Unfortunately, this family history can predispose them to develop chemical dependency issues.

As the founder of PACE Recovery’s Adoption Center and an adoptee, Dr. Brett Furst describes addiction as a disease primarily rooted in two things – escapism and attachment. Even if you do your best to provide a stable, loving home, an adopted child might still struggle to trust and accept you after all the upheavals they have experienced.

While adoptees desire a sense of connection, they have frequently learned to view close relationships as risky. As a result, they may start searching for ways to escape from challenging emotions like fear and guilt. In these cases, drugs and alcohol could become a coping mechanism to compensate for a perceived lack in an adopted young adult’s life.

Adoption and Trauma

Adoptees often carry a significant burden of trauma, usually starting from a young age. Adverse childhood experiences like abuse and neglect can leave their mark on young people who lack the context or emotional maturity to process what has happened to them.

Adoption tends to cause feelings like loneliness, helplessness, anger and abandonment, even though many adoptive parents spare children from the toxicity and dysfunction created by their birth families. Though they may recognize that their biological parents were unreliable, they could still hope for a reunion. A deep-seated fear of abandonment might also make them anxious that their new family might eventually reject them. These feelings can leave adoptees looking for a release in the form of drugs and alcohol.

Adoption-Related Treatment Specialists

It is not inevitable that adopted children will develop substance use disorders later in life. Even if an adoptee goes on to struggle with addiction as an adult, he can still live a healthy and fulfilling life by seeking treatment.

PACE Recovery has successfully treated many clients who come from adoptive homes. Over the years, we have created specialized programming that caters to adoptees’ unique circumstances, needs and concerns. We use specialized approaches to treat adopted people for the underlying issues that contributed to their substance use or mental health disorder, including attachment-focused therapy.

If you’re an adoptive parent of a young adult man who grapples with substance misuse and drug dependency, healing is possible. Often, clients who come to PACE Recovery have trouble dealing with the ramifications of the trauma and instability men face starting in early childhood. Contact us to learn more about healing your family.

To read the full text of Dr. Furst’s publication, click here.

Men’s Health Issues

Many men ignore their mental and physical health, which may cause them to develop preventable illnesses that take years off their lives. Having a preventive mindset is one way to be a better steward of your overall well-being. This Men’s Health Month, here are some proactive steps you should take to avoid illness and stay healthy at every stage of your life.

1. Get Screened for Heart Disease

Even if you have no apparent symptoms, you may still be at risk for high blood pressure and other forms of cardiovascular disease. You can take an active role in your heart health by taking your blood pressure, getting routine checkups and being aware of your unique risk factors. Eat a balanced diet, quit smoking, stay active, reduce stress and take other measures as instructed by your health provider.

2. Work to Prevent Cancer

Common cancers diagnosed in men include skin, prostate, colorectal and lung cancers. A combination of a healthy lifestyle and regular screenings can help you stay cancer-free. To reduce your risk of various cancers, wear sunscreen, cut back on meat, quit smoking and talk to your doctor about other preventive measures.

3. Exercise Regularly

The physical and mental health benefits that come with getting in shape are well-documented, but you might still have trouble finding the motivation to work out. If you don’t already have an exercise regimen, use Men’s Health Month as your opportunity to start one.

  • Work out with a friend or partner – that way, you can keep each other accountable.
  • Choose an activity you enjoy. For example, if you’ve tried jogging and couldn’t stick with it, try swimming, biking, rock climbing or hiking instead.
  • Join a recreational sports league. Games like kickball and softball are an excellent way to get active. You’ll elevate your heart rate and burn calories without it feeling like a chore. You could even make some new friends along the way.
  • If it’s hard to carve out time in your schedule, try “exercise snacking.” With this approach, you squeeze in brief periods of activity whenever you have a few free minutes, instead of spending an hour in the gym each day.

4. Know the Signs of Depression

Some men are depressed without realizing it because the symptoms don’t always align with what they expect. Men may experience depression as anger or irritability instead of sadness and hopelessness. You might also prefer to try ignoring your feelings instead of exploring them. If you are having any mood irregularities, take the first step by speaking with a therapist or counselor.

5. Find Healthy Coping Mechanisms

If you regularly use alcohol and drugs to help you relax and feel good about yourself, you are compromising your health in more ways than one. These substances can change your brain to a point where you no longer feel like yourself unless you’re drinking or using. Long-term use will also put you on a path to addiction, cause significant organ damage and compromise your relationships with friends and family members.

Be Proactive About Your Health

You only get one body, so it’s crucial to prioritize your well-being by taking an active role in your health. Form a partnership with a therapist or general provider who can guide you toward recommended tests, answer any questions you may have and put you on a path to improved wellness.

At PACE Recovery Center, we address all facets of addiction and co-occurring mental health disorders. We’ve designed our Orange County gender-specific treatment specifically to empower men to experience the freedom of a substance-free lifestyle. Speak with our admissions team to learn more about how we can help you live life on your terms.

Emotional Impact of Foster Care

Sadly, some children do not have loving homes to grow up in. When their parents and extended family can’t provide for their needs, these children will enter the foster care system. While foster care can have a positive impact, children in the foster system often face tremendous hardships from a very young age. As we observe National Foster Care Month, how can these traumatic experiences adversely affect children’s mental and behavioral health?

The Relationship Between Foster Care and Trauma

When abuse and neglect from their biological families make home life too dangerous, social workers or other authorities can place children into the foster care system. Often, foster children bounce from one placement to the next, unable to find a stable, caring environment. When placed into another home, many children may wonder if they did something wrong or question whether their families still love them. They can also feel confusion, anger, fear and mistrust.

Additionally, while foster programs aim to provide children with a safe place to live until they can reunite with their biological family or find permanent placement through adoption, many foster children age out of the system and end up lacking the support they need to live independently.

These traumatic events can have severe mental health effects that extend into adulthood.

Mental Health Disorders Associated With Foster Care

Adverse childhood experiences like trauma and abuse are among the strongest predictors of adult mental and behavioral health problems. Since foster care children are so vulnerable, it shouldn’t be surprising that they are at an increased risk of negative long-term outcomes like these.

  • PTSD
  • Substance use disorders
  • Reactive attachment disorder
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Borderline personality disorder
  • Social phobia
  • Oppositional defiant disorder
  • Conduct disorder
  • ADHD
  • Self-harm
  • Separation anxiety
  • Eating disorders

Children and adolescents who have learned from an early age that the world is an uncertain, hostile or dangerous place might start abusing drugs and alcohol because they have grown up without positive role models and examples of healthy coping behavior. As a result, they can develop an addiction that makes their mental health worse, creating a vicious, self-perpetuating cycle.

Treating Adoption-Related Issues

Many children who are fortunate enough to get adopted out of the foster care system still grow up with significant emotional difficulties, such as trust issues and a lack of self-worth. These insecurities and attachment problems can make it harder for them to establish healthy, secure relationships.

At PACE Recovery, we have worked with many adoptees, and we’ve seen firsthand how many issues they struggle with. Our desire to help adoptees heal is at the heart of our specialized adoption programming, which we’ve developed in partnership with nationally recognized adoption expert Brett Furst. This program focuses on addressing the underlying causes of mental health issues and addiction while fostering healthy, secure attachment styles in a safe, supportive environment.

If you’d like to learn more about our treatment approach, how we address co-occurring disorders and the in-depth mental health services we offer for young men, please reach out to speak to one of our knowledgeable admissions counselors.

Signs of Drug Use

Contrary to popular belief, addiction does not signify a flawed moral compass. It’s a brain disease that can affect anyone, whether they use drugs recreationally or with a doctor’s prescription. Knowing these warning signs can help you identify whether your loved one may be abusing drugs and risking harmful consequences.

1. Tolerance

A growing tolerance is one of the earliest warning signs of drug use. This condition occurs when someone becomes accustomed to having drugs in their system, and their brain’s reward circuits have rewired themselves to expect a baseline level of intoxication. At that point, the user will need to take more drugs to achieve their desired results. That’s why even prescription drugs can be addictive, especially when people start taking higher-than-intended doses or using them in off-label ways, like injecting or snorting them.

2. Withdrawal

When someone abuses drugs, they’ll gradually become physically and psychologically dependent on their substance of use. Then, they’ll eventually experience cravings and withdrawal symptoms when they try to quit, which are some of the most telltale signs of drug use. Your loved one’s withdrawal symptoms can be severe, and might include mood swings, body aches, nausea, insomnia and seizures.

3. Financial Issues

Maintaining a drug habit can be expensive. As his addiction worsens, your loved one might spend more than he can afford on drugs, going into debt or neglecting to pay bills, taxes or child support. He might also have problems keeping his job if he chronically shows up late or has multiple unexplained absences from work, further contributing to his financial difficulties.

4. Relationship Problems

The secrecy, deception and isolation required to maintain a worsening substance use disorder can all drive a wedge between a drug user and the people who care about him. Ultimately, someone with the disease of addiction will lose all interest in other hobbies, instead preferring to prioritize their substance of use. His friend group may dwindle until the only close relationships he has left are with his drug buddies, or he might prefer to use drugs alone and in private because he’s trying to hide how severe his habit has become.

5. Worsening Mental Health

People with addiction are more likely to develop mental health problems, and vice versa. If your loved one struggles with illnesses such as anxiety, depression, OCD or PTSD, using drugs could seem like a temporary escape from his symptoms. Sadly, this misguided coping mechanism will eventually make his mental health worse.

Help Is Here for You

If your loved one is showing any of these signs of drug use and you are seeking a solution, PACE Recovery Center can help. We designed our Orange County residential rehab program specifically to help men overcome a dual diagnosis of addiction and mental illness and live healthy, drug-free lives.

We offer a complete continuum of care for substance use and co-occurring mental health disorders, treating the whole client and setting your loved one up for a lifetime of success. Our accredited team is waiting to help someone you care about experience the freedom that comes with lifelong, purpose-focused sobriety. Take the next step by contacting us today.

Signs of an Alcoholic

Alcohol is legal, easily accessible and socially acceptable. As a result, some people believe drinking is a safe way to relax, make friends and enhance activities like concerts and sports events. However, alcohol has done more cumulative damage to people’s health, relationships and overall quality of life than any other drug. In addition, its harmful societal effects are wide-ranging and can result in illegal activities, irresponsible decisions, violence and legal and financial problems.

Alcohol Abuse Tendencies

Sometimes, it can be challenging to tell when drinking has crossed the line into problematic behavior because for most men, the progression from tolerance to dependence to full-fledged alcohol addiction happens gradually. Occasionally having a beer or a glass of wine doesn’t mean your loved one has a substance use disorder, but when he starts feeling the urge to drink daily, that’s an early warning sign. Another red flag of a growing addiction is craving alcohol or talking about wanting to drink when sober.

Here are some other issues problem drinkers might experience as alcohol begins to take over their lives.

  • Wanting to stop drinking, but finding the habit is too hard to break
  • Prioritizing drinking over other aspects of life
  • Lying about the amount they drink or trying to hide the evidence to prevent other people from suspecting they are addicted
  • Drinking alone because they are ashamed about how much they drink
  • Frequent blackouts, during which they do things they have no memory of the next day
  • Doing irresponsible things under the influence, like driving drunk
  • Becoming distressed or anxious when they run out of alcohol
  • Trying to change the subject if someone mentions that they might need help

The Dangers of Alcohol Withdrawal

Addiction is a chronic disease that affects brain chemistry by hijacking the built-in reward system. Eventually, it will become increasingly difficult to take pleasure from any other activities, and problem drinkers may only feel like their genuine selves when they’re drinking.

The human brain is a plastic organ, which means it can reconfigure and adjust itself in response to changing circumstances. When your loved one’s brain adapts to alcohol’s effects, it will struggle to achieve the same equilibrium when he tries to cut back or quit entirely. At that point, alcohol withdrawal begins.

Withdrawal symptoms include a range of physical and emotional issues that vary in severity. These include:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Insomnia and chronic fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Sensitivity to light, noise and touch
  • Anxiety or depression
  • Suicidal thoughts

Alcohol is one of the most dangerous substances to try quitting cold turkey because some heavy drinkers are at risk of delirium tremens, a serious condition characterized by hallucinations, uncontrollable sweating and shaking, seizures and heart palpitations. Delirium tremens is sometimes fatal, so it’s a medical emergency that requires immediate attention from experienced health professionals.

Addiction Treatment for Men

One long-lasting stigma about addiction is that it only happens to people who have some inherent weakness or moral flaw. At PACE Recovery, we know that couldn’t be further from the truth because we have worked with clients from all belief systems and ways of life.

If your loved one struggles with an alcohol use disorder and has tried to quit, a men’s-only rehab program tailored to his needs will equip him with the tools he needs to manage his illness for the rest of his life. The first step is medically managed detoxification, during which health care providers will monitor withdrawal symptoms and work to make your loved one as comfortable as possible. Then, he can move into the next phases of treatment. Call us today to learn more about thriving in recovery.

Signs of Infection From Shooting Up

People who use drugs like heroin and meth may inject them to experience more rapid effects as their tolerance builds and they seek a new way of getting high. Aside from a worsening addiction, infections are one of the most significant risks associated with intravenous drug use.

Why Do IV Drugs Cause Infections?

When you get injections in a medical setting, your health care provider will take steps to ensure the process is sterile, including swabbing your skin with a disinfecting wipe and using a clean needle. In contrast, IV drug use usually doesn’t take place in a sanitary environment, which creates an opportunity for germs to enter your body. The drugs themselves may also be contaminated.

Though your body has built-in systems to protect you from illness, injecting any substance into your skin bypasses these barriers. Infections from dirty needles, other drug paraphernalia or even surfaces can travel through your bloodstream into your organs and bones. Some people who inject IV drugs can also develop painful skin abscesses.

Symptoms of Infections From IV Drugs

Since long-term substance abuse weakens the immune system, people who inject IV drugs are more vulnerable to viruses like HIV and hepatitis. Skin infections like cellulitis and necrotizing fasciitis are other potential severe infections that can result from sharing or reusing needles or neglecting to clean your skin before shooting up.

Some warning signs of an infection can mimic those associated with drug withdrawal, including a fever, dizziness, disorientation, body aches or lightheadedness. Your skin may also be red, hot and sensitive to touch.

Sepsis is an extreme, potentially fatal response to infection that can begin anywhere in your body. If you have a recurring illness or your symptoms are getting worse, seek medical attention immediately. Even people who survive sepsis are at risk of developing life-threatening disabilities such as organ damage and chronic fatigue syndrome.

How to Stop Abusing Drugs

Once you start relying on drugs to cope with life’s challenges, you’ll probably go through withdrawal when you try to quit using. These physical and psychological symptoms can range from uncomfortable to dangerous and may cause a relapse, no matter how determined you are to get clean. Professional treatment is the best way to ensure long-term sobriety and break the patterns of substance abuse.

At PACE Recovery, our experienced team of physicians, doctorate-level clinicians and master’s-level therapists have developed a comprehensive continuum of care informed by the knowledge that diverse treatment options are essential for people who are working to recover from substance use disorders and behavioral health issues.

To verify your insurance coverage or learn more about our men’s-only residential rehab programming in beautiful, sunny California, please reach out to us today.

What is Delta-8 THC?

Its popularity is increasing, but so are the potential safety issues involved in a substance known as Delta-8 THC. The product can be dangerous on many levels so it’s important to understand what Delta-8 THC is and how it can affect a person who consumes it.

Delta-8 THC

A psychoactive substance found in the Cannabis sativa plant, Delta-8 tetrahydrocannabinol is more popularly known as Delta-8 THC. It is one of over 100 cannabinoids that are produced naturally by the cannabis plant but are not found in the plant in significant amounts. Concentrated amounts of Delta-8 THC are usually manufactured from hemp-derived cannabidiol or CBD.

Not Evaluated by the FDA

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not evaluated or approved Delta-8 THC products for safety. In fact, the products may be marketed for consumption in ways that actually put individuals’ health at risk.

There are growing concerns around the Delta-8 THC products that are currently being sold, both online and in stores. Some of these concerns include the variability in the way the product is formulated and labeled. These products may contain other cannabinoid and plant oils with variable Delta-8 THC concentrations. Labels may simply say “hemp products,” and that can mislead individuals who typically associate hemp products with non-psychoactive products.

The FDA is further concerned about products containing the substance that are marketed for medical or therapeutic uses. Consumers can be at risk when consuming these products. The organizations that sell the products using these marketing techniques, claiming unsubstantiated therapeutic benefits, are violating federal law. Individuals who use the unproven substance Delta-8 THC to treat serious or even fatal diseases can be at significant risk.

Adverse Event Reports

The danger of consuming Delta-8 THC products has been shown in the number of adverse event reports received by the FDA. Over a twenty month period, from December 2020 through July 2021, the FDA received a number of reports of individuals who experienced hallucinations, vomiting, difficulties standing, and a loss of consciousness. Most of these individuals consumed the substance in edibles such as brownies and gummies.

In addition, national poison control centers received 660 exposure cases of Delta-8 THC products between January 1, 2021, and July 31, 2021. Of the cases received:

  • 41% involved unintentional exposure to Delta-8 THC
  • 77% of these unintentional exposures affected pediatric patients under the age of 18
  • 39% of the total cases involved pediatric patients under the age of 18
  • 18% required hospitalizations, including children who were admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU) following exposure to these products. 

Some of the side effects involved in the use of Delta-8 THC include rapid heart rate, red eyes, trouble with coordination, dry mouth, slowed reaction times, memory loss, and anxiety. Since it is synthetically produced, one of the major dangers of using the substance is not knowing exactly what the product contains.

Production Involves Potentially Harmful Chemicals

Since the natural amount of Delta-8 THC in hemp is low, additional chemicals are necessary to convert the other cannabinoids in hemp, including CBD, into the final product. There are many concerns with this process, including the fact that some manufacturers use potentially unsafe household chemicals to make the substance.

The synthetic process may also involve other chemicals used to change the color of the final product, which can have potentially harmful effects, especially when combined with other chemicals. The biggest danger is that there is significant uncertainty as to exactly which potential contaminants may be present in a product.

The chemicals used to make the Delta-8 THC can be very harmful to an individual. This is especially true when the manufacturing process takes place in an uncontrolled or unsanitary setting. Additional harmful substances and unsafe contaminants can find their way into the final product in these situations, causing even greater danger to the person consuming the substance.

Addiction and Mental Health Support for Men

We want you to be safe and healthy. When you are addicted to a dangerous and unregulated drug such as Delta-8 THC, we can help. At PACE Recovery, we optimize your recovery success with integrated treatment that will address both your addiction to drugs or alcohol and your mental health issues. We address your whole person, including your spiritual, medical, psychosocial, and relational facets.

The professionals at PACE understand the challenges you are facing during this period of isolation and uncertainty. We’re here to help. Our men’s-only programming has transformed hundreds of lives over the years, and we believe that you can recover. To learn more about our mental health and addiction services, contact our Admissions team.

The Myth of Adopted Child Syndrome

Adoption can be a happy and positive event. The child who is adopted finds a new home and a supportive family. However, the very need for a child to be adopted means that they have experienced a loss of some sort and that can cause some issues, often well into adulthood. There is a myth of Adopted Child Syndrome that is controversial and does not tell the true story of issues faced by adopted individuals.

Adoption Awareness Month

November is National Adoption Awareness Month, a time to focus on the continuing need for the adoption of children in the US, especially teenagers. The theme for 2021 is “Conversations Matter,” as it’s important to talk about adoption, particularly with the young people who are in the foster system or who have been adopted. This month and throughout the year, having that conversation will create an environment where the adopted individual knows they can be honest and ask questions that are important to them.

A Controversial Term

The term Adopted Child Syndrome was first used in 1978 by Dr. David Kirschner. The term has become controversial, is not included in the latest edition of the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM), and is not considered a valid diagnosis. It has been used to describe the behavioral and emotional challenges that adopted children may experience, including problematic behaviors such as violence or defiance. However, Dr. Kirschner said that he used it to describe a very small clinical subgroup of individuals at the time of his study.

Adoption Challenges

There are legitimate issues facing adopted children and, in fact, some individuals have challenges throughout their adult lives because of the trauma they faced through their loss earlier in life. While adoption can give the child the loving, permanent home they need, the fact they need a new home can have negative effects on their mental and emotional health.

A young person who is adopted can struggle with low self-esteem, identity issues, difficulty forming emotional attachments, and a sense of loss or grief over the loss of their birth family. These negative effects can be short-lived and resolved once the adoptee feels an increased sense of security, but they can also arise in the individual during times of emotional stress throughout their lives.

Mental Health Issues

Several research studies indicate that there is an increased risk of mental health issues for adults who are adoptees. Studies found higher levels of anxiety, including panic disorder and generalized anxiety disorder, as well as depression among participants who had been adopted. The studies also found higher levels of behavioral disorders, certain personality disorders, and neuroticism.

Substance Abuse

In addition to the trauma of loss experienced by individuals who are adopted, there may have been issues with drug or alcohol addiction in the adoptee’s birth family that were at least partially responsible for that loss. The issues faced by the adopted child, coupled with certain genetic factors, could also lead to an increased rate of substance abuse that lasts into adulthood without appropriate treatment.

Research has found that the prevalence of a lifetime substance use disorder was 43% higher in individuals who had been adopted, compared with non-adoptees. The lifetime prevalence rates of alcohol use disorders was 41% and the rate of nicotine addiction was 25.4% for adoptees. The rates of illegal drug abuse in individuals who were adopted ranged from 2.9% for opioids to 13.2% for cannabis.

Adoption Competence in Treatment Options

One survey that was identified by the research studies revealed that about half of the participants were seeking therapy for a variety of reasons, including self-esteem, anxiety, depression, and family issues. Almost a fourth of the survey respondents noted that adoption competence was the highest factor in their choice of a therapist for their mental health issues. Having a mental health professional who specialized in their particular situation made a difference in terms of having someone who truly understands their stresses and challenges as adoptees.

Specialists in Adoption-Related Treatment

The professionals at PACE Recovery Center understand the struggles you may encounter as an adoptee, particularly in regard to adoption trauma and abandonment and attachment issues. Please contact PACE Recovery Center if you have been adopted or are an adoptive parent and struggle with alcohol, drugs, and mental illness. Our gender-specific, evidence-based addiction recovery center for men will help you begin the healing process and begin a remarkable journey. During these challenging times, our highly skilled team is adhering to COVID-19 guidelines to ensure you remain safe and healthy. You can reach us today at 800-526-1851.