Obese Teenagers at Increased Risk for Eating Disorders, Study Finds

A report to be published in the October issue of the journal Pediatrics will highlight an alarming new trend among American youth, namely, that teenagers who suffer from obesity are at a higher risk of developing eating disorders. According to the results of the study, physicians are failing to diagnose eating disorders in formerly obese children and adolescents, perhaps because they are happy with the children’s weight loss.

One unpublished study cited in the forthcoming report found that half of all teens with eating disorders were formerly obese. The study also found that these teens’ eating disorders remained undiagnosed much longer than those of adolescents who did not have a history of obesity.

The lead author of the report in Pediatrics, Leslie A. Sim, theorized that the doctors who are failing to diagnose eating disorders in their formerly obese, adolescent patients may be “so distracted by their charge to prevent obesity that they think any kind of weight loss is good.” Dr. Sim is the clinical director of the eating disorders program at Mayo Clinic.

Physicians are too likely to praise formerly obese children and teens for losing weight, without investigating the methods kids are using to shed extra pounds, or what unhealthy attitudes they may be developing about food and eating, Dr. Sim said. She also pointed out that many of the weight control tips doctors give their obese adolescent patients – like cutting out certain types of foods, using extreme portion control, and eating only at certain times of day – lead to disordered eating.

The report clearly underlines the need for health care providers to make a connection between childhood obesity and adolescent eating disorders. The earlier a teen is diagnosed with disordered eating, the better his or her chances of a full recovery. Eating disorders are the deadliest of mental illnesses, killing as many as ten percent within the first ten years and 20 percent within 20 years.

If you suspect that your teen has developed an eating disorder, don’t wait to get help. Call us now at 1-888-415-0708 to find out how we can help restore your child to health.

Why Are Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms Dangerous?

Many people don’t realize that alcohol withdrawal symptoms are dangerous, and can be deadly if left untreated. While mild alcohol withdrawal symptoms may be merely uncomfortable, withdrawal from the later stages of alcoholism can cause seizures, delirium tremens, and death. Here’s why you should never try to detox from alcohol without proper medical support.

Alcohol Abuse Affects the Brain

People who have been drinking heavily for a long time – especially if they drink every day – suffer changes in brain function that causes disruptions in neurotransmitter production. Chronic alcoholism suppresses the effects of GABA, the neurotransmitter that produces feelings of calm, and glutamate, the neurotransmitter that causes feelings of excitement.

When a severely alcoholic person starts drinking, levels of these neurotransmitters return to normal levels, causing alcohol withdrawal symptoms like tremors, irritability, anxiety, agitation, seizures and DTs.

Mortality Rate for Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms

Seizures and DTs are the alcohol withdrawal symptoms most likely to result in death. Not all alcoholics will experience seizures or DTs when they stop drinking. The appearance of these particular alcohol withdrawal symptoms depends on how long, how heavily and how frequently the person drank.

Seizures due to alcohol withdrawal will typically appear 24 to 48 hours after the person’s last drink. DTs will typically begin 48 to 72 hours after the last drink. People who have gone through alcohol withdrawal multiple times, or who have a history of DTs and alcohol withdrawal symptoms, poor liver function, advanced age, or acute illness, are at the highest risk for withdrawal symptoms and DTs. Between one and five percent of people who experience withdrawal seizures or DTs will die from alcohol withdrawal.

If you or someone you love is addicted to alcohol, you need professional help to quit drinking safely. We can help you detox from alcohol and get counseling for your alcoholism. Call us today at 1-888-415-0708.

Synthetic Marijuana a Huge Problem in Florida

Synthetic marijuana, also known as K2 or Spice, remains a huge problem in Florida, despite the statewide ban on the drug enacted in 2011. A recent news article in the Sun Sentinel reported that deputies in Palm Beach County busted four people on charges of manufacturing synthetic marijuana in early September. The four were caught with nearly 300 pounds of the drug, the news article said.

The Sun Sentinel news article reported that deputies with the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office began investigating the synthetic marijuana manufacturers in June. Search warrants allowed them to confiscate 105 pounds of synthetic marijuana from a warehouse in Lake Worth, the news article said. The deputies also found another 187 pounds of synthetic marijuana at a home in Boca Raton.

The news article also reported that deputies shut down two labs for the manufacture of synthetic marijuana, and seized $215,000 cash. The suspects have been charged with manufacturing a Schedule I controlled substance and manufacturing synthetic marijuana, the news article said.

Another news article published on WTSP.com announced one of the biggest synthetic marijuana busts in Florida history. Officials raided four convenience stores selling the drug in the Clearwater, Florida area. One of the stores contained so much evidence that police struggled to fit it into the evidence van for transport, the news article said.

Synthetic marijuana contains THC, the compound in marijuana that causes users to get high, but the THC in synthetic marijuana has been chemically altered. Synthetic marijuana is more dangerous than natural marijuana because it could contain any number of harmful chemical ingredients. The chemical agents used in synthetic marijuana can vary widely from one batch to the next. It’s known for causing paranoia, agitation, psychosis and delusions.

Because it’s impossible to know what chemicals a synthetic marijuana addict may have been ingesting, researchers do not yet understand the effects of long-term abuse. Treatment of synthetic marijuana addiction is can be more difficult than treatment for addiction to better-understood drugs.

At the Delray Therapeutic Model, we treat anxiety and depression, eating disorders, and addiction. Call us today at 1-888-415-0708 to learn more about synthetic marijuana addiction and how we can treat it.

Does Your Teen Need to Detox from Alcohol?

Teens in the U.S. use alcohol more than any other drug. Many teens experiment with alcohol with no long-term ill effects. Others become addicted to alcohol, and maybe even other drugs as well. Does your teen need to detox from alcohol and undergo addiction treatment? Here’s how you can tell.

Signs of Alcoholism in Teenagers

If your teen needs to detox from alcohol, you’ll notice signs of alcoholism in your teen. Your teenager’s breath, clothes or body may smell of alcohol. Your teenager may develop a new group of friends suddenly, may begin having mood swings, may begin stealing, and may acquire alcohol-using paraphernalia.
Your teen may begin lying and making excuses for poor behavior, possibly related to alcohol abuse. She may withdraw from the family and from previous activities she enjoyed. She may become physically or verbally abusive or violent towards others. All of these are signs that your teen is abusing alcohol and has perhaps become dependent. If your teen suffers physical withdrawal symptoms when she stops drinking, it’s a sure sign that a detox from alcohol and addiction treatment are in order.

Risk Factors for Teen Alcoholism

Some teens are at a higher risk than others of developing alcoholism. Teens who have problems in the home, lack appropriate parental supervision, or have a family history of addiction or substance abuse are more likely than others to wind up needing to detox from alcohol. Teens who are emotionally unstable, who have poor impulse control, or who engage in thrill-seeking behaviors are more likely than others to wind up needing to detox from alcohol.

Solving Your Teen’s Drinking Problem

If you think your teen has a drinking problem, it’s important that you get them help as soon as possible. The sooner you intervene and get your teen help, the better her chances of a successful long-term recovery. An inpatient rehab facility will help your teen detox from alcohol. Once your teen’s detox from alcohol is completed, she will need addiction therapy to help her develop coping skills and resist the urge to go back to drinking in the future.

Does your teen need to detox from alcohol? We can help. Call us today at 1-888-415-0708 to learn more.

What Can I Expect from Fast Opiate Detox?

Fast opiate detox is a treatment for opiate addiction developed about 15 years ago to help alleviate the withdrawal symptoms associated with opiate detox. The fear of a painful withdrawal is often enough to keep many opiate addicts using heroin, prescription painkillers, methadone or morphine much longer than they would if quitting painlessly were an option. That’s where fast opiate detox comes in.

What Is Fast Opiate Detox?

Fast opiate detox, also known as “rapid opiate detox,” is a method of opiate detox in which the patient is placed under general anesthesia, then given drugs to stimulate withdrawal and speed the progression of withdrawal symptoms. When the patient wakes up, the worst withdrawal symptoms are, ideally, over. The patient may be given maintenance medication, like buprenorphine, to ease any withdrawal symptoms that remain after the fast opiate detox is complete and the patient is awakened.

How Long Does Fast Opiate Detox Take?

Fast opiate detox generally takes between four and six hours. After the patient is awakened, any lingering withdrawal symptoms are assessed. Most fast opiate detox clinics require a stay of two to three days.

What Comes After Fast Opiate Detox?

After you have gone through opiate detox, you’ll still need treatment for addiction. Detox breaks your body’s dependency on drugs, but it doesn’t address the reasons why you used drugs in the first place. You may need months, or even years, of addiction counseling after detox ends.

If you still have residual withdrawal symptoms, you may also need maintenance medication. Buprenorphine, or Suboxone, is usually prescribed for opiate addiction maintenance. The drugs will ease any lingering withdrawal symptoms you may be feeling. Your dose will be gradually lowered over time until it’s low enough to allow you to stop taking the drugs altogether with minimal or no withdrawal symptoms.

At the Delray Model, we specialize in the treatment of opiate and other addictions, eating disorders, and anxiety issues. Call us today at 1-888-415-0708 to find out how we can help you break free from opiate addiction.

Group Therapy Under the Delray Model: How Is It Different?

Many people think of the 12-step program, or other recovery self-help programs, when they think of group therapy for addiction. But group therapy for addiction under the Delray Model is different. At the Delray Model, our group therapy sessions are led and directed by a professional addiction counselor who can help group members address their issues properly and process difficult emotions and traumatic events.

Self-help recovery support groups like AA typically do not benefit from the guidance of a trained professional addiction counselor. That doesn’t mean those groups aren’t beneficial. They help recovering addicts share their experience, get advice from others who’ve been through similar situations, and build a sense of community. But they are not the place to go for an evidence-based psychotherapeutic approach to addiction treatment.

Group therapy for addiction under the Delray Model incorporates cognitive behavioral therapy and dialectical behavioral therapy. Cognitive behavioral therapy involves identifying the patterns of thought behind your addictive behaviors, then changing those thoughts and, by extension, your behaviors. Dialectical behavioral therapy is a similar therapeutic model that helps people identify counterproductive or harmful thoughts or beliefs, develop emotional regulation skills, build interpersonal skills, and identify and celebrate strengths and achievements.

At the Delray Model, we believe that our clients receive the maximum benefit from group therapy by staying with the same group over the long term. Unlike some inpatient programs where group therapy with the same group lasts only a few weeks, we at the Delray Model like to keep our clients with the same therapy group for several months or even years. This allows clients to form real bonds with the other members of their therapy group, and to delve as deeply as possible into the emotional and psychological issues behind their addictive behaviors.

At the Delray Model, we believe there’s no substitute for a trained addiction counselor when it comes to tackling the causes of addiction. While uncovering and resolving the issues behind addiction takes time, it is work that’s well worth doing. Call us today at 1-888-415-0708 to learn what the Delray Model of addiction treatment can do for you.

How Can I Tell If I Need Anxiety Treatment?

Anxiety disorders are very common – about 40 million Americans suffer from an anxiety disorder of some type, with most exhibiting their first symptoms by age 21. Anxiety disorders include obsessive-compulsive disorder, panic disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, social phobia as well as other phobias, and generalized anxiety disorder. It can be hard to tell if you need anxiety treatment, because these disorders manifest themselves in very different ways in different people. Here’s how you can tell if you need anxiety treatment.

Do You Feel Persistent Worry or Fear?

Though different anxiety disorders manifest themselves in different ways, they all share the common characteristic of causing unshakeable, often severe worry and fear, even in situations where other people wouldn’t be afraid or worried. If you’re afraid of things that don’t concern others and you can’t shake off your fear, you may need anxiety treatment.

Does Your Worry Interfere With Your Life?

Is your fear or worry troubling enough to keep you from fulfilling your responsibilities at home, work or school? Do you avoid situations that scare you, no matter how ordinary they may be? Do you refuse to do things that scare you? If so, you may need anxiety treatment.

Are Your Fears or Worries Irrational?

Irrational fears and worries, especially ones you can’t ignore or shake off, are often signs that you need anxiety treatment.

Do You Fear Something Terrible Might Happen If You Don’t Do Certain Things?

This is a symptom of obsessive-compulsive disorder known as magical thinking. If you are performing certain actions in an effort to prevent the things you fear from happening, you need anxiety treatment.

Do You Experience Sudden Episodes of Extreme Panic?

Panic attacks, which are usually accompanied by feelings of breathlessness and rapid heartbeat, are a symptom of panic disorder. Anxiety treatment can relieve these symptoms.

If you answered yes to any of these questions, we can help. Call us today at 1-888-415-0708 to learn about our anxiety treatment programs.


How to Support a Loved One Going Through Anorexia Treatment

Anorexia is a serious eating disorder that affects 8 million women and men in America. Without treatment, anorexia can be deadly. Anorexia treatment usually requires medical, nutritional and psychological care to nourish and heal the body while working through the emotional and psychological issues present in the mind. If someone you love is going through anorexia treatment, you may be wondering what you can do to help.

Understand the True Cause of Anorexia

Anorexia isn’t just about body image, dieting, or food. It’s usually tied to deeper issues like depression, family pressures, emotional trauma or stress. People often develop eating disorders like anorexia because they feel like they lack control over their lives. Controlling their calorie intake and weight it is a way to feel in control again.

Sometimes people develop anorexia because in order to avoid facing and resolving difficult feelings or memories. Obsessing about food, weight, and dieting helps distract people from their problems. These problems must be addressed and resolved as part of the person’s anorexia treatment.

Don’t Try to Fix the Anorexic Person

When someone needs or is going through anorexia treatment, it can be tempting to offer your advice or perspective on the situation. Remember, you don’t understand what he or she is going through. Leave the fixing to the professionals. It’s up to your loved one to do the work they need to do to make anorexia treatment a success.

Be a Healthy Eating Role Model

Instead of acting like it’s your job to force-feed the person in anorexia treatment every calorie that they need, model healthy eating and appropriate exercising yourself. Promote the development of healthy body image by refraining from saying nasty things about your own body, their body or anyone’s body.

Be Nice

Don’t try to manipulate or strong-arm the person in anorexia treatment with threats, put-downs, angry outbursts or scare tactics. A person suffering from anorexia has already been through extreme emotional pain and being negative will only increase the person’s suffering.

At the Delray Model, we specialize in compassionate, effective anorexia treatment. Call us now at 1-888-415-0708 to learn more.