Q – Why is it so hard for people to stop drinking or using drugs?

A – Addiction is a disease.  Those who become addicted to a drug or alcohol develop a physical dependence on the drug of choice.  To simply stop using drugs, without medical supervision, can be difficult and sometimes even dangerous.

Q – Who can be affected by addiction?

A – Anyone.  Like many other diseases, from the common cold to cancer, addiction does not discriminate by race, age, gender, religion or financial wealth.  Addiction is known as the equal-opportunity disease.

Q – How can you tell when someone has a problem?

A – Take an alcohol screening test by clicking here.

Q – Can I have a family member involuntarily admitted for treatment?

A – The Detox Unit accepts both voluntary and involuntary admissions.  Involuntary admissions are initiated through the Florida Marchman Act.  If you have a friend or loved one who has lost the power of self-control with respect to substance abuse and is considered a danger to themselves or others, and you’d like to learn how to have them admitted to First Step under the Marchman Act, click here.

Q – How significant is the prescription drug abuse problem?

A – Dependency on prescription drugs has become an issue of epidemic proportions.  Designed to provide comfort and quality of life for those with painful and/or terminal life conditions, prescription pain killers have changed the landscape of substance abuse and substance abuse treatment programs.

Q – If I know someone who has developed a dependency on prescription drugs, where can they get help?

A – Regardless of the situation, First Step counselors have a professional approach in treating those suffering from a prescription drug dependency.  To learn more about detoxification, residential or outpatient treatment for you or your loved one struggling with a dependency to prescription drugs, call 941-366-5333 to speak to an admissions counselor.

Q – What are the dangers of prescription drug abuse?

A – Mixing prescription drugs together, or with alcohol, can be fatal.  Alcohol can intensify the effect of the medication and could lead to cardiac arrest, internal bleeding and difficulty breathing.

Q – What are some of the side effects one might notice if they have developed a dependency to prescription drugs?

A – Painkillers can cause drowsiness, inability to concentrate, apathy, lack of energy, constriction of pupils, constipation, nausea, vomiting and respiratory depression.

Q – What are signs of a prescription drug overdose?

A – Signs of an overdose include pinpoint pupils, cold and clammy skin, confusion, convulsions, severe drowsiness and labored breathing.

Q – What should you do if you suspect someone is overdosing from prescription drugs?

A – If you suspect that someone could be overdosing from prescription drugs, DO NOT LET THEM SLEEP IT OFF, as this could be fatal.  Seek immediate medical attention.

Q – Does substance abuse counseling work?

A – First Step provides clients with the educational resources, support networks and tools to be successful in their recovery once they leave the safety net of our programs.  Given this, many individuals are successful in maintaining their sobriety.  Others may have episodic success, meaning they will do fine for a period of time, and then relapse into old habits.

Q – What is the process of getting my family member into a program?

A – Contact our Admissions Office by calling 941-366-5333.  An Admissions counselor will meet with you and your family member to discuss treatment options, if Detox will be necessary, and financial considerations.

Q – Is substance abuse counseling at First Step expensive?

A – Counseling services at First Step, whether residential or outpatient, are relatively inexpensive compared to private, for-profit organizations.  Also, compared to the cost of using illegal drugs, loss of jobs and the emotional burden placed on family members, the cost is not high.  First Step charges fees based on a sliding scale for many programs and accepts most insurance.

Q – Can people in a residential recovery program receive visitors?

A – Yes.  Each program varies, but time is designated for visits with family and friends each week.

Q – What is your privacy policy?

A – Download our privacy policy

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