Located on the western tip of Texas, the city of El Paso is just across the Rio Grande River from the northern edge of Mexico. It is a thriving city, home to several large employers that include the headquarters of Western Refining. The city’s population is almost 684,000.
El Paso’s cultural scene is vibrant, boosted by year-round warm temperatures and many annual festivals, including Fiesta de las Flores and the KLAQ Great River Raft Race. Tourism remains a strong economic factor, as people come from around the country to enjoy the city’s festivals, visit its well-known zoo and attend football games at the Sun Bowl, home to the country’s second-oldest college bowl game.
Due to El Paso’s location on the border of Mexico, Mexico’s notorious drug cartels often bring their wares through the city, and those who struggle with addiction can easily access their drug of choice as a result. Thankfully, access to addiction treatment is possible for those who need help with drug or alcohol addiction.
Addiction Treatment In El Paso, TX
The most effective treatment outcomes are often achieved when a patient works through a full continuum of care, focusing first on detox and then moving through drug rehab programs that provide therapy in gradually decreasing levels of intensity.
An addiction treatment plan may include some or all of the following levels of care:
- Professional intervention services
- Medical detox
- Inpatient drug rehab
- Outpatient drug rehab
- Aftercare and alumni services
Professional Intervention Services
Healing can only begin once a person recognizes the toll that substance abuse is taking on their life, and sometimes that realization requires the help of professional intervention services.
El Paso interventions can help families have a productive discussion with an individual about their addiction and encourage them to get help. Intervention professionals understand the psychology of addiction and know how to assist families in getting through to those they love who are struggling.
Medical Detox Programs
The first step in addiction treatment for many people is a detox program. El Paso drug and alcohol detox programs provide medical supervision and often use medications to assist the person through the withdrawal process as safely and comfortably as possible. Only after the substance has left the body can the mental and physical healing truly begin.
Inpatient Drug Rehab Programs
After detox, many patients will begin therapy by entering an inpatient drug and alcohol addiction treatment program. El Paso residential drug rehab programs allow the patient to live on-site in a drug-free environment while receiving counseling and therapy. This sets the foundation for lifelong recovery and helps protect against relapse.
Outpatient Drug Rehab Programs
Sometimes a person is unable to participate in an inpatient treatment program, or a patient may need additional support after completing an inpatient program. The next step for these individuals is outpatient addiction treatment.
Outpatient addiction treatment allows the individual to live at home or in a sober living house while attending therapy sessions during the day at an outpatient treatment center. This level of care can be very beneficial for those who have relapsed, are recovering from a mild addiction or need a transitional step after inpatient treatment before entering independent life in sobriety.
Aftercare And Alumni Services
Recovery is a lifelong process, and patients often benefit from surrounding themselves with a support system to help maintain their sober lifestyle. Aftercare and alumni services in El Paso provide this ongoing support and connection to a sober community. Some aftercare options may include:
- Sober living homes
- Peer support groups in the community
- Online recovery support groups
- Job counseling
How Long Does Addiction Treatment Take?
The length of treatment will vary from one individual to the next. A comprehensive clinical evaluation during admission will help each individual decide what course of treatment and treatment length would work best for their needs. Long-term treatment, statistically speaking, is more effective than short-term treatment.
In El Paso, some common treatment lengths include:
- 30-day short-term programs
- 60, 90 and 120-day long-term programs
- Programs lasting a year or more
Paying For Addiction Treatment
For patients who have realized they need addiction treatment, the cost of that treatment is a common problem. For patients with health insurance, their plan’s behavioral health services coverage will cover at least a portion of addiction treatment.
Common insurance providers offering coverage in El Paso include:
- Aetna insurance
- Affordable Insurance Group
- Blue Cross and Blue Shield of New Mexico
- CHRISTUS Health Plan
- Molina Healthcare
- New Mexico Health Connections
Sometimes even with insurance, patients will be left with some portion of the bill for their treatment. Other options to pay for treatment include:
- Payment plans
- Medical credit cards
- Scholarships and grants
Substance Abuse In El Paso, TX
Marijuana Seizures On The Rise
Because El Paso is located on the Mexican border, drug trafficking is a serious problem in the city. In the 2015 fiscal year, Border Patrol seized 44,000 pounds of marijuana in the El Paso region. While some of this is destined for other locations in the United States, much of it ends up in the local community, and those who are abuse marijuana often find it easy to get their hands on the substance.
El Paso residents struggle with alcohol addiction, and it’s a problem that is often found in the teenage population. In 2011, nearly 24 percent of ninth grade students in El Paso reported that they were binge drinkers. Of those surveyed, 83 percent said they started drinking at age 14 or younger. A full 28 percent indicated they drank alcohol in the last 20 days.
Rates for adults are also high, with 17.9 percent of the metro area admitting to heavy or excessive drinking. As the young people who are struggling with alcohol abuse grow up and become adults, that number will likely increase.
El Paso continues to struggle with methamphetamine addiction. Between 2014 and 2016, Border Patrol increased methamphetamine seizures by 103 percent. Methamphetamine addiction treatment admission rates in the area increased by 500 percent between 1995 and 2014.
Signs Of Addiction
Because addiction is a complex, multi-layered disease, those who are struggling with it may be in denial as to the extent of their problem. Family members and close friends are often left with the responsibility of helping the individual get the professional treatment they need. In order to do so, they must be able to recognize the signs of addiction.
In the early stages of substance abuse, some signs that indicate an addiction is developing might include:
- Distancing from friends and family
- Lack of attention to personal hygiene
- Anger and aggression
- Neglecting responsibilities
- Seeking the addictive substance
- Putting safety at risk in order to use the substance
As the disease progresses, additional signs may include:
- Financial trouble
- Depression and anxiety
- Developing tolerance to the addictive substance
- Intense cravings
- Inability to stop using the drug or drinking alcohol
- Increased risk-taking relating to the drug or alcohol use
- Withdrawal symptoms
Thankfully, addiction treatment is available that will effectively teach the individual how to live free from alcohol or drugs. Finding the right treatment opportunity is critical to successfully breaking the cycle of addiction and embracing sober living.
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Common Addictive Substances Found
The city’s location on the Mexico border makes many illegal drugs easily available to El Paso residents. Some of the most commonly used legal and illegal substances include:
- Cocaine (including crack)
- MDMA (ecstasy)
Regardless of which substance an individual is struggling with, effective addiction treatment is available. By choosing a high-quality treatment facility and fully committing to the program, patients can break free of addiction and enjoy a fulfilling life in sobriety.