Author Archives: kent

Marijuana or Alcohol, Is Marijuana Really Safer?

February 16, 2014 in Drug Rehab News by kent  |  No Comments

Marijuana or Alcohol, which is more dangerous?

The New Yorker Magazine did an interview with President Barack Obama excerpts of which were published in “Livescience” where the President said, and we share their quote:

“As has been well documented, I smoked pot as a kid, and I view it as a bad habit and a vice, not very different from the cigarettes that I smoked as a young person up through a big chunk of my adult life,”  “I don’t think it is more dangerous than alcohol.”

Both of these drugs are used recreationally and, even though there are major differences in how they are regulated by the laws of the land, it is very difficult to compare the long-term effects of using either drug.  There are many factors that go into this analysis.

The Center on Disease Control (CDC) says that there are 88,000 deaths a years related to alcohol.  However, the research on marijuana’s effects on the body is studied to a much lesser degree than that of alcohol.  It is difficult to find reputable studies on the long term effects of marijuana.  For one thing, it is only legal to smoke in Colorado and Washington states and that makes it difficult to find subjects that are willing to to come forward to volunteer for research projects.

If a person consumes a large amount of alcohol, it can kill them rapidly and this is documented in many cases on a daily basis throughout the world.  It wasn’t long ago that there were news articles about fraternities having games that included the ingesting alcohol quickly and at high volumes and the deaths that occurred because of these practices.

You can literally die within minutes from drinking too much alcohol, but the same isn’t true for marijuana.  However, this shouldn’t be used as an excuse for the fact that smoking marijuana has many detrimental side effects, just as cigarettes cause 440,000 deaths per year, yet no one has ever died from smoking a few cigarettes, if there is such a thing as a “bing smoker”, so you can see that the analogy breaks down in many ways.

Alcohol is also dangerous because of its effects with other drugs and medications, which isn’t the case with marijuana.  You have people who die from drinking a moderate amount of alcohol, but were also taking painkillers or other drugs that notoriously increase the effects of both the alcohol and the drug.

The immediate effects of smoking marijuana cause a lack of awareness and an impairment in judgement, which leads to bad decisions.  Many auto accidents are caused by impaired drivers that are high on marijuana.  We have laws to enforce driving while under the influence of both marijuana or alcohol, but because judgement is impaired, people still smoke marijuana and drive. They also put themselves at risk by making poor judgements related to unprotected sex.

The long terms effects of alcohol are know by most adults. Everyone is aware of the damage that heavy drinking causes to the liver and the cardio vascular system as well as blood sugar level, etc.  None of these are documented with heavy use of marijuana.

It is not the concern of this website about the physiological difference that come from marijuana or alcohol use, but the addiction potential and the effects that it has on one’s personality.

In this area, casual to social drinking is much less dangerous that the use of marijuana.  A person can have a mixed drink, a couple of beers or a glass of wine a day and not have any significant changes to their basic moral codes or “who they really are as human beings”.  But the effects of smoking marijuana are much more detrimental to a persons future and the choices he makes than moderate use of alcohol.

It is a fact that whether marijuana is legal or not, it is a gateway drug to many types of drug addiction.  THC, the chemical in marijuana that causes one to feel the effects, lodges in the fat tissues of the body and causes a person to have the effects of that drug months or even years after it is smoked.

The Use of marijuana is well documented to cause a person to have lower motivation and aspirations to achieve his potential.  Many people experiment with marijuana in their adolescence, which is a time when it is difficult to have enough confront of the challenges of life even when not under the influence of a drug.  Chronic use of marijuana at this age reduces one’s ability to mature and gain the learning that is necessary to socially and educationally be competitive with one’s peers.

When you look at adolescents as they mature though life, you will find that those that smoked marijuana didn’t achieve as many of the needed goals to be successful in the rest of their lives.

This subject is much more subtle and profound that can be discussed in an website article. From the many years that we have been working with addicted individuals that are attempting to confront their problems and rebuild their lives, we can tell you that smoking marijuana is a high-risk activity and shouldn’t be justified that it is much better for a person than heavy drinking.  Neither of these are needed to do well in life and both with hinder one’s ability to succeed and be as happy as they could be if their confronted their lives without these drugs.

Marijuana or Alcohol?  Sorry, but the answer is neither.

Success Stories

February 26, 2012 in Success Stories by kent  |  No Comments

December, 2008

Dear Family and Friends,

This past year has been the most life changing experience for me. I have found my purpose in life and I don’t know that I ever really knew what purpose meant – I mean what it really meant. I have taken several steps forward, not looking back unless it was going to help prepare for the huge steps forward that I was fixing to take.

I’m thankful for the purpose in life that God has shown me and the ability to put it into action. I remember praying and asking God why me – why did I choose to use drugs, I hated drugs and saw what it did to people I care a lot about. This is what he showed me – it can take over your life and ruin it in the blink of an eye. You can lose family members and never be able to go back. Through my use I was destroying the person that I was and quickly becoming someone that I didn’t like. I didn’t know how to love myself and therefore I hurt the ones I loved the most. But through using drugs and now being 14+ months clean and sober, I am a person with a PURPOSE. I love who I am, I pray to God without shame, I help others to get off drugs, and I live life to its fullest. You see the first 33 years of my life, before I ever tried a drug, I didn’t feel that I had a purpose. I was doing for others, helping others, hurting others without realizing it, feeling down on myself, low self-esteem, and feeling less than – well NOT ANY MORE. I’m grateful for my past and even more grateful that it has had a lesson to learn to be able to help God to help others with a cruel addiction that is overflowing our country. Never feel down on the people that have such addictions – they are good people with an illness. Just take the steps to help them – especially if they come to you and say they have a problem and they need the help. I used to dream of being a nurse like my grandmother and work at a nursing home. But God had a different plan for me – I’m working at a drug rehab – who would have ever thought – me? God did and my family and my daddy who knew exactly what recovering from addiction and helping others was all about.

I came to treatment to help get off meth. My clean date is Oct. 1, 2004, but I was having the cravings, I new that if I didn’t get help I would be back on meth fast. I had already gotten myself into legal trouble and I knew that if I was going to have any kind of chance at life – I needed help fast. My mother, daughter, aunt and uncle pulled together to get me to Narconon. The cost of legal issues and the cost of rehab didn’t come cheap but my family will tell you that it didn’t matter the cost if it gave me life – and boy did it! I graduated Narconon on Feb. 11, 2005 – my daughters 19th birthday – she said it was the best birthday present she could ever have – her mommy back. I came back full force, intention without reservation. I have repaired the damage with my family and friends and my legal issues by working my conditions. I have made a decision on which side of the fence I am on. I have worked on my fair exchange and abundance exchange with my family. I have my ethics in. I have worked hard to show by my actions that I have changed and I carried that on to the courts. Back on Sept. 2, 2005 – I went open before the judge on 4 felony counts. I had family and lots of friends by my side that day, the judge voted in my favor – no jail time is necessary – I got the minimum of 5 yrs probation, I report by mail and was granted the right to return to Narconon to train to become staff. I came back to Narconon on 9/26/2005 and in 5 weeks – I made staff. I am working in withdrawal – the first step in helping people come off drugs – drug free. WOW – it’s amazing the work I put into it and the results that come from it. I now realize that I had to take the steps I had to take to get where I am today and for that – I AM TRUELY GRATEFUL.

So thank you all for standing by me and praying for me – I promise to be the best me I can be and live the PURPOSE that God intended for me to live.

With Love,

The Best Evaluation

February 26, 2012 in Success Stories by kent  |  No Comments

March, 2013

I have a three-year old daughter and I am a student and working a full time job.  I made a mistake, which I thought wouldn’t be too hard to rectify, but I was wrong.  I got a citation for a DWAI, for driving with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.04, which is less than a DUI’s 0.08, which is why I didn’t think that I would have too much trouble getting this behind me.  Because I had my daughter with me in the car, I was also sited for child-endangerment.  I have always put my daughter first and I didn’t feel that I couldn’t drive well, or I would have never driven.

When I was told that I had to have a alcohol and drug assessment or evaluation, I went to one of the programs that was on the list that the courts gave me.  That should have been the right action, but it turned out to be a intake counselor and not an evaluator.

I called Mac at 888-781-7060 and explained my problem. He told me that he was semi-retired and that his credential were higher than others doing evaluations.  He took time on the weekend to do my evaluation and it proved that I didn’t have an alcohol or drug addiction or abuse problem.  He discounted my fee because he understood how hard it is to make ends meet as a young mother and student.

The evaluation was what I needed.  It was thorough and comprehensive and I am now going on with my life without worrying about more complications.


Paul’s Story

February 26, 2012 in Success Stories by kent  |  No Comments

I was born in 1968 in a small town. By the age of 7 I began to notice drug use in my family and actually began using alcohol and marijuana. When I turned 17 I was using drugs such as marijuana, cocaine and alcohol on a daily basis. I had become desperate and was using whatever drugs I could get my hands on.

In 1990 I moved to Miami, Florida at the height of the South Florida drug scene. I began smuggling drugs of all kinds into the country. Drugs like ecstasy, cocaine, marijuana, anything that I could get into the country and make money on. I had absolutely no concern for others or myself, which landed me in jail for the first time. I was arrested and convicted at age 22 for possession of 28 pounds of marijuana.

By 1993 at 25 years of age I began to use heroin and by the age of 28 I had lost everything that I had worked for. My mother found out about my addiction and tried to help me on her own to no avail. Within a year I was back on heroin and was actually arrested and convicted twice for possession of heroin. I was sent to jail for 9 months and was released in 2000. I actually did well for about a year after prison and did not use any drugs or alcohol. Then my drug use began to resurface. I was drinking regularly and had also begun to use marijuana and speed again.

In 2002 I decided to fully handle my drug addiction. My mother actually knew of a program in Oklahoma that had a very high success rate. I quickly hoped onto a plane and started the Narconon program. Within a couple of weeks I could tell that this program was going to make a huge impact on my life and that I would never have to use drugs or alcohol again. I graduated from the program in 4 months time and have never looked back since.

Sean’s Success Story

February 26, 2012 in Success Stories by kent  |  No Comments

I had been told that I was drinking too much and after a fight with my wife and saying things that I regretted, I had my family drive me to an alcohol and drug rehab center about three hours from my home, with my wife and five children. Everyone in my extended family were supportive my decision. I had plenty of sick-leave from work to stay as long as it takes to handle my problem.

When I arrived at the center I felt that everything that I had been told wasn’t real and that I had been sold a treatment program in the same way you would expect to be sold a used car. I refussed to stay and with my family now worried and a bit angry, I needed something that would make sense to me and not just be sold on a facility.

I called help line and talk to Mac, who said that he was a licensed alcohol and drug counselor and that he had been in the field as a professional for over 30 years. As I told him my situation and the problems that I felt when I drove to the other treatment center. He assured me that my preceptions were real and that many rehab centers believe that they have use whatever tricks they can to break through the denial of the alcoholic or addict.

Mac did a telephone assessment of my alcohol use and recommended that I enroll in the Brief Intensive Therapy program. He felt that at the end of the three days I would either be able to continue gaining control of my problem or I would know, without doubts, that I needed to attend a longterm treatment program. He said that he was inclined to feel that I wasn’t at a level of need requiring residential treatment.

To make a long story short, I attended the BIT and even after the first few hours of training and therapy I was laughing wiht my kids for the first time in two weeks. M. and I spent three long days together and he left me with two workbooks to continue my study and introspection. This has been a wonderful experience and I can say that without the help that I received, I would have continued on a downword spiral that was going to leave me alone and divorced. I can’t guarantee that I will continue to be alcohol and drug free, but I can’t imagine ever getting to a place where I would feel that it is okay to sabotage my best interest and cave myself in. My insight and maturity is so much higher than I have ever had before.

Mac says that all he did was re-awaken the truth in me, but whatever the process was, I am thankful and wanted to share this with others.



Role Models Disappoint Again

February 26, 2012 in Drug Rehab News by kent  |  No Comments

• Former Miami Dolphin and free agent Jason Ferguson has been suspended by the NFL for the first eight games of 2010. The veteran nose tackle was pr suspended in 1999 after a urine test revealed anabolic steroids in his system. (March 2010)

• One of three quarterbacks in the running to become the starter at the University of Georgia next season has been arrested on charges related to underage drinking in a south Georgia bar. Zach Mettenberger, 18, was charged with underage consumption, possession of alcohol, disorderly conduct, obstruction and two counts of having fake identification. (3/2010)

• Mark Newman, a senior vice president of operations for the New York Yankees, has been charged with driving under the influence in Tampa. Police said Newman refused to take a breath test. He was later released on $500 bail. (3/2010)

• Rap artist DMX, whose real name is Earl Simmons, has been arrested in Phoenix for violating his probation by using drugs. The rapper was in the middle of an 18-month supervised probation term when he was busted. (3/2010)

• Minnesota Timberwolves center Al Jefferson was suspended for two games after he was arrested for driving while intoxicated after Minnesota lost to Portland. “I want to apologize to the entire Timberwolves organization, owner Glen Taylor, my teammates, coaches and Wolves fans everywhere for my actions last night,” Jefferson said in a statement. “I made a very poor decision and I am truly sorry for that.” (2/2010)

Find out more at:

Drug Testing With Plenty of Warning Allows NFL Players Ample Time For Tampering

February 26, 2012 in Drug Rehab News by kent  |  No Comments

On Jan. 9, 2011, the trainer of the Green Bay Packers went through the locker room after the playoff game and announced to some of the players, like center Scott Wells, that he was going to have a drug test the next day. Scott argued that he just passed one and was it really necessary.

No to worry Scott, because he has ample time, 15 hours, to do whatever is necessary to tamper with his sample so that it will be a worthless test… it will come out clean, but the protocol of announcing before hand, even an hour, is highly irregular.

The Olympic Committee tests its athletes immediately, which is the accepted method. Travis Tygart, the head of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency said: “The world knows you can’t give advanced notice for testing for it to be effective.”

The Center for Drug Free Sport is the contractor that the NFL uses to implement their drug testing policy. They took input from the Player’s Association and the Packers refused comment when question about this dubious procedure.

The Vice President of the NFL, Adolfo Birch, said that this was only done on game days because the players are many times give the next day off and they wanted to be sure that they showed up for the test. He said that he didn’t agree with the advance notice because it compromises the accuracy of the test. He said that at other times the players are given test without notice and that their labs screen for “masking agents” that could be part of the collected samples. Mr. Birch said that this only happens on game day.

This is part of the problem since a player would take a Performance endurance-boosting EPO the morning of the game and know that he isn’t going to be tested until Monday morning, which is ample time for the drug to have be metabolized. (thanks to the Wall Street Journal for this data) 

Weeding out your significant other? The effect of marijuana on relationships

February 26, 2012 in Drug Rehab News by kent  |  Comments Off on Weeding out your significant other? The effect of marijuana on relationships

Being young involves quite a bit of exciting change. There’s the end of high-school, the start of college and some measure of independence, and a whole slew of new experiences.

A recent study conducted by Judith Brooks at NYU School of Medicine has revealed that one of those experiences, smoking marijuana (weed) may be associated with more relationship conflict later in life. What’s amazing about this study is that the drug use here occurred earlier in life for most of the 534 participants, while the relationship trouble was assessed around their mid- to late-twenties.

Could other factors explain this finding?!
Now you may be thinking to yourself that there are a whole lot of other aspects of a person’s life that can affect their relationship quality and their probability of smoking weed in adolescence. You’d be right, but here’s what the researchers in this study ruled out as possible confounds (the scientific name for variables that obscure findings):

• Relationship with parents
• Aggressive tendencies
• adjustment difficulty
• gender
• education

Even after controlling for all of these things, smoking marijuana as a teen still predicted having less harmonious relationships later on in life.

All humor aside, this research is not saying that if you smoke weed you will definitely have a lower quality relationship later. What it does point out is that, on average, given a person with similar social skills, aggressive personality, and education, the one who smoked marijuana around their mid-teens is likely to have a less satisfying relationship.


Brook, J. S., Pahl, K., and Cohen, P. (2008). Associations between marijuana use during emerging adulthood and aspects of significant other relationship in young adulthood. Journal of Child and Family Studies, Vol 17, pg. 1-12.

Over-the-Counter Drugs Used by Teens

February 26, 2012 in Drug Rehab News by kent  |  No Comments

A report on the troubling trend of prescription and Over-the-counter drugs abuse among the Nation’s Teens:

Drug Rehabs – Are They Drugs or Candy

February 26, 2012 in Drug Rehab News by kent  |  No Comments

It has been found in San Diego that drug pushers are being forced to be more creative in the way they package their products. Investigators found that drugs are being disguised in candy wrappers and inside of chocolate bars and other confections.

“Dealers are targeting kids with things like chocolate bars and gumballs filled with marijuana. A so-called strawberry quick is really crystal methamphetamine disguised as a pink, strawberry-flavored powder” According to Channel 10 News in San Diego.

“They take these dangerous drugs and they mask them, they hide them, in something that does not seem dangerous,” said Steve Robertson with the Drug Enforcement Administration.

“It’s more palatable it seems. When it looks like a Snickers bar, a kid’s more likely to eat it because they’re used to eating Snickers bars,” said Tony Bylsma with Narconon.

“They need to find new customers, and they’re trying to drum up business,” said Bylsma. And dealers know they’ve got to hook customers while they’re young.

“If they reach the age of 21 and they haven’t begun to use, then their chances of them using are very, very small,” said Bylsma.

“The fact that they’re targeting younger kids really makes me sick to my stomach,” said recovering drug user Gina Attaguile.

Attaguile said she knows about the dangers all too well. She got hooked on meth when she was just 16, including popcorn-flavored meth. “You actually had like a sensation of melting butter in your mouth,” said Attaguile.


Also in Southern California, young students are taking over-the-counter cold remedies to alter their consciousness. reported the following:

The Coricidin HBP Cough and Cold pills look harmless – a pack of 16 could fit in a teenager’s palm – but when abused, they can be deadly.

Students call them “Triple Cs” and say they are offered for sale in local schools. In California, calls to the Poison Control hotline for help with teen overdoses increased 15-fold. And a bill has been introduced in the U.S. Congress to help curtail abuse.

“Because it slowly dissolves – it’s a longer effectiveness for cold symptoms – what kids do is they either take several of them or smash them, and all of it is released at one time,” said Cathy Dunn, California regional manager for the Partnership for a Drug-Free America.

“That could make it deadly.”

The La Quinta High student and two others who were taken to the hospital Tuesday afternoon are serving five days suspension for the incident, said Principal Donna Salazar.

The others took more than 10 pills but less than 25, she said.

“The kids were quite sick,” Salazar said, but added Wednesday that they are “recovering well.”

Salazar said she and other administrators will visit every class this week to educate students about the dangers of abusing over-the-counter medications and the school policies that ban them without a doctor’s note.

Jane Mills, director of child welfare and attendance in Palm Springs Unified School District, said she’s seen more of these incidents in the past five years.

“We’d be foolish to say we don’t know about it. We can’t put our heads in the sand,” Mills said.

Palm Springs Unified students found with over-the-counter medications get on-site counseling and resources, just as students who are caught with illicit drugs, Mills said.

Officials at Coachella Valley Unified School District did not return phone calls seeking comment.

Each Coricidin HBP Cough and Cold pill contains 30 milligrams of dextromethorpan, a cough suppressant found in many household cold medications such as Robitussin and NyQuil.

The Robitussin brand has given rise to the term “robotripping” for its use to a point of altered consciousness.


Even though this site is dedicated to drug rehab and treatment, the only way that this country is going to get close to handling the drug and alcohol problem is to invest in prevention efforts. These efforts should not be the school’s responsibility, but all efforts should be directed and helping parents to talk to their children comfortably and intelligently, without fear tactics. The truth helps all of us by giving us the data we need to make decisions on how we can survive at the highest levels. Children today need to feel comfortable in confronting the reality of what they are being exposed to outside the home and they need to feel that if they make a mistake by buying some pot-infested chocolate bars, that their parents will see their behaviors in light of the age and the pressures to take risk and not to over-react.

We get calls from parents that are becoming hysterical because they drug-tested their teenager and found traces of marijuana use and they are wanting to commit them to long-term treatment immediately.

If you find that your teenager has been using drugs and is lying to you about his/her use, call 1-888-781-7060 and talk to one of our counselors who can help you see how this behavior fits into the bigger picture of his/her life. Sometime, a person as described would need treatment, but more often, it is an opportunity to become an ally of your child and work though the truth about these drugs and their consequences. Our counselors will be able to help you discern whether or not professional intervention is necessary.

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