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Friday, January 27, 2017

Mary Tyler Moore's Alcoholism

Mary Tyler Moore passed away Wednesday, January 25, 2017, at the age of 80. Often referred to as “America’s Sweetheart,” Tyler Moore's life was nothing short of extraordinary; she starred in both hot movies and television shows, and championed a number of causes. Her life was also extraordinary in a tragic way as well, and is a perfect example of addiction being family disease—affecting multiple generations.

Mary Tyler Moore was born on Dec. 29, 1936, the daughter of two alcoholics, according to The New York Times. Her sister, Elizabeth Moore, died of a drug and alcohol overdose in 1978. Mary Tyler Moore would struggle with addiction as well over the years, and was treated for alcoholism at the Betty Ford Center in 1984. She would open up about her addiction in her memoir and during interviews.

In 2005, Larry King asked her how she beat alcoholism, to which she responded, “I just made up my mind to stop:”


MOORE: Well, I went to the Betty Ford Center and got a lot of education there and a lot of spirit and determination. Somebody said something -- it's a
--> cliché, you've heard it a 100 times, but they say if you want to get all the air out of a glass, what do you do? There's no way to do it but fill it with something else. And that something else is joy of living, reading, being creative, know you're doing the right thing. And that got me to thinking.
KING: Why didn't the joy of success work?

MOORE: I don't know.

KING: One doesn't know, does he?

MOORE: No. And, you know, with alcoholism, you tend to drink because you're angry, or you drink because you're sad now, or you drink because you are just so happy you want to celebrate.

There is not just one way to recover from the debilitating disease of addiction. Tyler Moore’s may not be the course another takes, but her story is inspirational to say the least. She came from a line of alcoholics and found a way to not let the disease be her end. The champion of women’s rights and the treatment of diabetes, she died at Greenwich Hospital in Connecticut of cardiopulmonary arrest.

If you or a loved one is struggling with an alcohol use disorder, please contact Celebrate Hope at Hope by The Sea. Our skilled team can show you how to live life without alcohol or any other mind-altering substances.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Cocaine, Heroin and Overdose

For an addict, there is such a thing as “more high.” Even if tolerance says otherwise. With some drugs, such as marijuana, a continued effort to increase one’s euphoria may not be that dangerous. But for drugs like prescription opioids or heroin, riding the line between intoxication and overdose is never in one's best interest—but highly sought after. What is considered to be a good high, can quickly turn into a deadly overdose.

The death toll related to drug abuse is almost always focused on opioid narcotics these days. While such drugs do not need any help with regard to being dangerous, addicts will commonly mix opioids with other narcotics, sometimes “uppers” and sometimes with more “downers.” It is quite common for people who mix opioids with benzodiazepines to experience a fatal overdose. However, there is another trend that has the power to take one’s life, commonly referred to as “speedballing.” That is mixing opioids and cocaine together, to be injected simultaneously. You may be aware that a number of celebrities have lost their life to the admixture, including:
  • John Belushi
  • Chris Farley
  • Philip Seymour Hoffman
The general public almost never hears about cocaine anymore, being overshadowed by drugs like heroin and fentanyl. If you did hear about cocaine, it is likely that it was because somebody famous died using the drug recently. But make no mistake, cocaine abuse is still a very real problem affecting many Americans. And for those with an opioid use disorder, who are finding that their tolerance is making it difficult to experience euphoria, cocaine might be the solution they consider. Anyone who has ever done a speedball will tell you that there is no other high quite like it, or as dangerous.

While cocaine use rates have been down in recent years, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency's (DEA) 2016 National Drug Threat Assessment has shown a significant increase in cocaine-related overdose deaths in recent years, according to the U.S. News & World Report. Cocaine can be deadly on its own; but when mixed with opioids the drug becomes exponentially more fatal.

“When there are no opioids involved in cocaine-overdose deaths you see an overall decline in recent years,” says Christopher M. Jones, an acting associate deputy assistant secretary with the Department of Health and Human Services. “But when you look at cocaine and opioids together, we see a more than doubling in the number of overdoses since 2010, with heroin and synthetic opioids increasingly involved in these deaths."
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