April 14, 2012

13th and Fee Lane [map]
Indiana University
Bloomington, IN


Promoting the education and awareness of the dangers and issues surrounding addiction and substance abuse, primarily through the use of live music and local resources as a way to connect the Bloomington community in a safe, engaging way!


Be Smart

how to tell if someone is in trouble

Overdose | Addiction Defined | Warning Signs | Addiction Myths

Getting Someone into Treatment | Celebrities Struggle with Addiction, Too


Provided by NOPE Task Force: Narcotics Overdose Prevention and Education

What is a Drug Overdose?

A drug overdose is the accidental or intentional use of a drug in an amount that is higher than is normally used. A drug overdose does not have to be of the same drug, it can also occur when one drug interacts with another.

Signs of Overdose

Don't Think You Can Let Someone "Sleep It Off"

Respiratory depression from a Central Nervous System Depressant and Pain Reliever Overdose can cause brain damage or death if not treated promptly by a medical professional.




(source: Overdose Risk Profile, Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office)

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The Definition of Addiction

Provided by the Alcohol/Drug Information Center (ADIC)

Answer yes or no to the following seven questions. Most questions have more than one part, because everyone behaves slightly differently in addiction. You only need to answer yes to one part for that question to count as a positive response.

If you answered yes to at least 3 of these questions, then you meet the medical definition of addiction. This definition is based on the of American Psychiatric Association (DSM-IV) and the World Health Organization (ICD-10) criteria.(1)

The terms alcohol addiction, alcoholism, and alcohol dependence all mean the same thing. No one term is more serious than the other. Different terms have evolved over the years to overcome the negative stigma of addiction, and to make it easier for people to reach out and ask for help. The same is true for the terms drug addiction and drug dependence.

(source: www.AddictionsAndRecovery.org)

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Warning Signs That a Friend or Family Member is Abusing Drugs

Provided by Alcohol/Drug Information Center (ADIC)

**Drug abusers often try to conceal their symptoms and downplay their problem. If you're worried that a friend or family member might be abusing drugs, look for the following warning signs:

Physical warning signs of drug abuse
Behavioral signs of drug abuse
Psychological warning signs of drug abuse
Signs and symptoms of alcoholism (alcohol dependence)
Alcoholism is the most severe form of problem drinking. Alcoholism involves all the symptoms of alcohol abuse, but it also involves another element: physical dependence on alcohol. If you rely on alcohol to function or feel physically compelled to drink, you're an alcoholic.

Tolerance: The 1st major warning sign of alcoholism
Do you have to drink a lot more than you used to in order to get buzzed or to feel relaxed? Can you drink more than other people without getting drunk? These are signs of tolerance, which can be an early warning sign of alcoholism. Tolerance means that, over time, you need more and more alcohol to feel the same effects.

Withdrawal: The 2nd major warning sign of alcoholism
Do you need a drink to steady the shakes in the morning? Drinking to relieve or avoid withdrawal symptoms is a sign of alcoholism and a huge red flag. When you drink heavily, your body gets used to the alcohol and experiences withdrawal symptoms if it's taken away. These include:

In severe cases, withdrawal from alcohol can also involve hallucinations, confusion, seizures, fever, and agitation. These symptoms can be dangerous, so talk to your doctor if you are a heavy drinker and want to quit.

Other signs and symptoms of alcoholism (alcohol dependence)

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Are you or someone you know in trouble?

What To Do | Getting into Treatment

What To Do

Provided by Amethyst House

There are several important issues to be aware of in dealing with a friend who might have an alcohol and/or drug problem.

Know that interventions are not to be taken lightly. You can call Jackie Daniels at the Office of Alternative Screening and Intervention Services (OASIS) through IU at (812)856-3898 for additional information and support beyond this article.

Do: Plan ahead of time. Check out what resources are available around campus and in the community for drug and alcohol education, treatment, and support services.

Don't: Talk to your friend if he/she is intoxicated. The best time to talk to someone is when they are sober. Sometimes people are more receptive immediately following a "bad night" of using. Don't try to talk to someone about getting help or addressing a problem when they are high or intoxicated. The person might be open to talking when under the influence however these types of interactions rarely produce any meaningful results as the person is not truly present and may not even remember the talk the next day. The worse thing you can do is get caught up in a pattern where an intoxicated person calls you regularly (maybe waking you up) to talk about their problems and share remorse for their chemical use. This will only serve to wear you out and enable the person not to take legitimate steps to get help.

Do: Assess your motives for reaching out to the person. If you have motives other than caring and concern the person will probably pick up on this and may reject your help. With this in mind if you occasionally abuse alcohol and drugs yourself, the person might want to confront what they perceive to be the hypocrisy of your concern.

Don't: Take the persons inventory. Critiquing or judging the person is a way to immediately create defensiveness in the person and to lose an opportunity to be helpful. As soon as a person feels judged they will tune you out.

Do: Present your concerns with "I" statements. Try to share at a level where you express your feelings about what you have observed. Sharing "I am sad or scared" about something witnessed works much better than "you pissed me off when…".

Don't: Preach at the person. You will lose your audience quickly if you do this.

Do: Realize that people need to have choices. Avoid telling the person that they have to do anything. The truth is that they do not have to do anything at all. Encouragement and suggestions work best.

Don't: Attempt to shame the person into taking responsibility for a problem. This never works and will just serve to add additional emotional distress to what the person is already experiencing. Avoid shaming phrases like telling the person what they "should" do.

***Do: Share with the person how much you appreciate them and validate their own personal strengths. Making statements about their likability when sober might be helpful. Addiction is a progressive disease so you might want to share how much you miss the person they were before their lifestyle was overtaken with partying.

Things to Remember:

Helping someone is sometimes a process and not an event. Often sharing of concern is met with indifference or defensiveness. You can present concern and let the person know you are around if they ever want to talk. It might take a long time for a person to actually reach out for help and to appreciate your support. Again let them know you are available to talk anytime as long as they are sober.

Be aware that typically people with alcohol or drug problems resent and will push away people that may recognize their problem and show concern.

Be aware that denial is a cornerstone of addiction and a student living in a drinking culture can find many ways to reinforce a belief that abnormal chemical use is normal.

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Getting Someone into Treatment

Provided by HBO: Addiction: Understanding Addiction

People with untreated addictions frequently say that there is nothing wrong with them; they falsely believe that they can control their drug or alcohol use. They strongly resist the notion that they need treatment, even when family members or friends believe otherwise. That's why it may be tempting to take a hands-off approach to the problem, hoping that your relative or friend's drug or alcohol problem will just go away - that he or she is just going through a phase and will get better with time. Or you may decide that treatment won't help because your addicted friend or relative doesn't want to make a change. But both of these beliefs are myths that can lead to a more severe addiction and to greater family disruption.

Addiction is a progressive disorder -it gets worse over time. The sooner a person receives treatment for addiction, the greater the chances for long-term recovery. Further, experts know that forced, or mandated, treatment can be successful. I fact, most people receiving treatment for addiction are getting help because they were forced into it by family or friends, employers or the criminal justice system.

Common wisdom taught that confrontation - "intervention" - was necessary to get a loved one into treatment. This confrontational approach is sometimes successful, but may not be the best approach. Intervention methods have been refined in recent years.

And a newer approach, called Community Reinforcement and Family Training or CRAFT, relies on a gentler, more supportive approach. This proven system is being used by 25 clinics in the United States.

However you choose to get your loved one into treatment, if possible, get the advice of an addiction treatment specialist - and try to learn if there is space available in the treatment program of your choice before you begin your effort.

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Myths of Addiction

Provided by HBO: Addiction: Understanding Addiction
* Adapted from Myths of Addiction. Carlton K. Erickson, Ph.D., University of Texas Addiction Science

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Steve-O: Demise and Rise Documentary

Click here to watch the entire documentary.

Steve-O: Demise and Rise - MTV Shows

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Celebrities Struggle with Addiction, Too

Provided by Drug Addiction Treatment

Do Celebrities Create Drug Trends? - September 3, 2009

It's a provocative question, but as the public's never-ending quest for gossip and the lurid details of celebrity lives continues to persist, stories of their alcohol-fueled escapades and drug use can make people curious.

In a Time magazine article on Michael Jackson's use of the powerful anesthetic Propofol, Dr. David Sack of Promises Treatment Centers in Malibu, said, "Whenever a drug gets attention like this in the media, people want to try it. It takes a while for things to break out. Sometimes they never do. But there are always people who abuse drugs who are looking for the next big thing."

It seems counter intuitive for someone to try a drug that they know only because it killed a celebrity, but drug abusers often believe they will be different: They won't do it to excess; they're smarter than that; it won't kill them. This self-deception creates a mindset that allows drug abusers to continue to try new drugs in riskier and riskier combinations. Combinations of opiates and alcohol that would scare off the average person sound like thrilling opportunities to the drug abuser seeking a better high.

"Cautionary tales do not necessarily break through the barrier of denial," Dr. Sack says. "Even drug abusers who have had very close calls with death will justify and rationalize continued drug use."

This sense of personal invulnerability puts drug users at extreme risk of overdose. If they don't believe it can happen to them, they will take greater and greater risks to achieve the highs they experienced at the beginning of their drug use.

While celebrity substance abuse may signal to others that this behavior is somehow acceptable, their recoveries can also serve as examples. Stories of Robert Downey, Jr.'s drug use and arrests were gossip-page fodder for many years. Most people had written him off as a hopeless addict. His remarkable recovery and second-life as a critically acclaimed actor show that even the seemingly most intractable drug abusers can overcome addiction.

Because the media are more inclined to print mug shots and compelling stories of drunk driving, bizarre behavior, and arrests than they are inspiring stories of recovery and freedom from addiction, stories such as Downey's are often lost to the noise surrounding the latest celebrity embarrassment. The message needs to be clear that drug addiction is a deadly affair that impacts all strata of society, not something that gives us an opportunity to mock celebrities.

Lady Gaga Admits Cocaine Addiction in Biography - February 8, 2010

Lady Gaga (whose real name is Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta) has spoken out about her former addiction to cocaine in her new biography, LADY GAGA: Just Dance, written by Helia Phoenix. The 23-year-old pop star said, "I wanted to be the artists I loved, like Mick Jagger and Andy Warhol…And I thought the only way to do it was to live the lifestyle."

The singer said that she would use cocaine, LSD, and other drugs to find inspiration for her music. But at the end of the day, she says she was saved by the ghost of her late aunt that lives inside her.

"I realized my father's sister Joanne, who'd died at 19, had instilled her spirit in me. She was a painter and a poet—and I had a spiritual vision I had to finish her business," she says.

Lady Gaga dedicated her Fame Ball tour to her aunt Joanne last year, saying, "I never met her, but she's been one of the most important figures in my life."

In the biography, Gaga says she believes her addiction to cocaine would have killed her.

"My cocaine soundtrack was always The Cure. I would lock myself in my room and listen to 'Never Enough' on repeat while I did bags and bags of cocaine. It was about being an artist. I wasn't a lazy addict. I would make demo tapes and send them around. At the time I didn't think there was anything wrong with me, until my friends said, 'Are you doing this alone?' Um, yes. Me and my mirror."

Eminem's Struggle with an Addiction to Painkillers: Prescription Drug Addiction - September 15, 2010

Fame, money and a recording contract aren't enough to keep a star away from the destructive world of drugs. Surprisingly, some may have believed they have escaped the curse if they never lay a hand on illegal substances. For too many, however, the relief is not sought in something they buy from a dealer on the street, but instead something a well-trusted physician will prescribe.

For rapper Eminem, otherwise known as Marshall Mathers, the reality of his world came crashing down in a spiral of painkiller addiction. At the height of his addiction, the celebrity was taking as many as 20 pills a day that included medications such as Vicodin, Ambien and Valium. In 2005, he left the music scene for his first round at rehabilitation, but it wasn't his only wake up call.

Eminem was not yet skilled at handling his addiction when he left rehab for the first time. His detox complete, he nearly overdosed on methadone when he took some pills from a friend. Later, he suffered a knee injury that required surgery. As a result of his addictions to painkillers, however, he could not be prescribed anything for the pain. He searched his house for a left over stash of anything that could cut through the pain and found some extra strength Vicodin and a few Valium. It would take this relapse to make him accept the fact that he had an addiction to drugs.

To hear the musician describe his addiction, he first relied on his art of rapping to achieve the high he sought. When that method stopped producing the high he wanted, he turned to painkillers. Like other drug addicts, he fights against the messages in his brain that push him to turn back to the painkillers, once again trying to achieve the high. Eminem claims he can once again get that high from his rapping, yet he will have to continue to fight to stay sober.

One of the biggest challenges for Eminem moving forward is the fact that he is back working in the same business that led to his drug use in the first place. While he has been clean for the past year, he is now immersed in the environment that holds temptation, and abstinence is bound to be an ongoing challenge.

As part of his new role as a recovered addict, Eminem is taking his message to his fans. His latest album talks of addiction and the struggles that accompany it. Much of his fame was built on an early career and songs focused on the lifestyle by which his mother lived and raised him. She was often the point of haughty criticism in his lyrics, yet today he says he finally understands her struggle. While this realization is poignant for mother and son, it is the lesson learned that can be used to try and help others.

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Who to Call


Signs of Overdose
Information provided by NOPE Task Force: Narcotics Overdose Prevention and Education

Bloomington Hospital:

Bloomington Alcoholics Anonymous:

Bloomington Narcotics Anonymous:

Treatment Options:
U. S. Dept. of Health and Human Services Center for Substance Abuse Treatment

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Addicted to Music Documentary Trailer (2011)

Addicted to Music Documentary Trailer from Mike Walker on Vimeo.

Confronting Addiction: The Short Documentary (2009)

Presented by Addicted To Music...this is the documentary about three people and the stories of their family members who battled addiction. Featuring Justin Schreiber, Ben Hopkins, and Amy McCormick.

Together we can kick the addiction, and become "Addicted to Music"

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The Jennifer Act

Jennifer Reynolds, 1979-2009

Sign Now to help substance abusers into recovery.

Sharon Blair

Sharon Blair's daughter, Jennifer Reynolds, died on January 15, 2009 at the age of 29 after overdosing on prescription drugs. Since then, Blair has moved to Bloomington and teamed up with Senators Vi Simpson and Sue Errington. The lawmakers drafted the Jennifer Act (IN Senate Bill 380) and introduced it in January of 2010.

Jennifer had battled a drug addiction since she was 16 years old, and Blair says there was no help beyond the traditional 72-hour hold in place in most states.

According to Blair, "I didn't drop the ball. As a matter of fact, I was screaming at the rooftop of my house for help for my daughter, because I knew she wasn't going to make it if I couldn't get an intervention."

The help never came.

So now, a Bloomington mother is bringing her grassroots effort from Florida to Indiana.

It's called The Jennifer Act, and it's all about intervention, even if the person needing the help refuses to get treated for drug addiction.

(Reference: Lewis, Tisha. Bloomington Mother Pushes for New Law to Help Drug Addicts". Fox 59. July 13, 2010. )

The Jennifer Act Synopsis

The Jennifer Act bill will provide Drug and alcohol abuse commitments. Provides procedures for the involuntary commitment of a person due to alcohol or drug abuse. Requires the division of mental health and addiction to maintain and operate or contract for alcohol and drug rehabilitation facilities, including faith based facilities. The Jennifer Act bill requires the law enforcement academy to provide training regarding persons with alcohol or drug addictions, including training for involuntary commitments for alcohol or drug use. The Jennifer Act bill requires the department of correction and county jails to provide alcohol and drug rehabilitation to all offenders with alcohol or drug addictions.

(Reference: Committee on Corrections, Criminal, and Civil Matters. Indiana)

Click here to read the bill.