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Category: Recreational Drugs

Battling Demons: Alcoholism Among Veterans

Battling Demons: Alcoholism Among Veterans

Alcoholism is a widespread and devastating problem that affects people from all walks of life. However, one group that is particularly vulnerable to this issue is military veterans. The challenges faced during and after military service can lead some veterans down a path of alcohol dependence, creating a complex and pressing issue that deserves attention and understanding.

The Silent Struggle

The life of a military veteran is marked by unique experiences and challenges, including combat deployments, extended periods of separation from loved ones, and the stress of adapting to civilian life. These experiences can take a heavy toll on a veteran’s mental and emotional well-being. As a result, many veterans turn to alcohol as a means of coping with their trauma, anxiety, and depression.

1. Trauma and PTSD: Exposure to traumatic events during active service can lead to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in veterans. The symptoms of PTSD, including intrusive memories, flashbacks, and emotional numbing, often drive individuals to seek solace in alcohol. They may use alcohol to self-medicate and temporarily escape from the haunting memories of their service.

2. Transition to Civilian Life: Reintegrating into civilian life can be challenging for veterans. They may struggle to find employment, establish a sense of purpose, or build a support network. The isolation and lack of structure that sometimes accompany civilian life can increase the risk of alcohol abuse.

3. Comorbid Mental Health Issues: Many veterans face mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, and substance use disorders in addition to PTSD. Alcohol is often used as a way to alleviate these co-occurring conditions, even though it ultimately exacerbates them.

The Consequences

Alcoholism among veterans has far-reaching consequences, not only for the individuals affected but also for their families, communities, and society as a whole. Some of the consequences include:

1. Health Problems: Excessive alcohol consumption can lead to a range of physical health issues, including liver disease, heart problems, and an increased risk of accidents and injuries.

2. Relationship Strain: Alcoholism can strain relationships with loved ones, leading to marital problems, family conflicts, and social isolation.

3. Employment Issues: Veterans struggling with alcoholism may have difficulty maintaining steady employment, which can further exacerbate their financial and mental health challenges.

4. Legal Problems: Drunk driving, public intoxication, and other alcohol-related offenses can lead to legal problems and involvement with the criminal justice system.

5. Suicidal Ideation: Veterans with alcoholism are at a higher risk of suicidal ideation and suicide attempts. The combination of alcohol abuse and untreated mental health issues can be particularly lethal.

Seeking Help and Support

Recognizing the problem and seeking help is the first step towards recovery. Fortunately, there are numerous resources available to veterans struggling with alcoholism:

1. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA): The VA offers a range of mental health and substance abuse services for veterans. These services include counseling, therapy, and inpatient treatment programs. Office for Veterans’ Affairs – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

2. Support Groups: Veterans can benefit from joining support groups like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or groups specifically tailored to veterans dealing with substance abuse issues.

3. Community-Based Programs: Many communities have programs and resources dedicated to helping veterans with substance abuse problems. These may include counseling services, vocational training, and housing assistance.

4. Veteran Service Organizations: Organizations like the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) often have resources and support networks for veterans struggling with alcoholism.

5. Professional Treatment: In some cases, professional treatment at rehabilitation centers may be necessary to address severe alcohol dependence.

Ways To Help Veterans With Mental Health & Alcoholism

Supporting veterans with mental health challenges and alcoholism is a vital and compassionate endeavor. These individuals have sacrificed much for their country, and we must help them on their path to recovery and healing. Here are some ways to assist veterans facing these issues:

  1. Promote Awareness and Reduce Stigma: Foster an environment where open discussions about mental health and addiction are encouraged and stigma is reduced. This encourages veterans to seek help without fear of judgment.
  2. Educate the Community: Conduct community workshops, seminars, and events to educate the public about the challenges veterans face, including mental health issues and alcoholism. Promote understanding and empathy.
  3. Support Veteran Service Organizations: Volunteer with or donate to organizations such as the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), or Disabled American Veterans (DAV). These organizations often provide essential support to veterans.
  4. Offer a Listening Ear: Sometimes, veterans just need someone to talk to. Be available to listen without judgment when they want to share their thoughts and experiences.
  5. Encourage Professional Help: Encourage veterans to seek professional help from mental health providers and addiction specialists. Provide information on available resources and assist with scheduling appointments.
  6. Foster a Supportive Network: Create a network of friends and family who can provide emotional support. Having a strong support system can make a significant difference in a veteran’s recovery journey.
  7. Supportive Housing Programs: Support initiatives that provide stable housing for veterans. Stable housing can be a crucial factor in their recovery from alcoholism and mental health issues.
  8. Employment Assistance: Assist veterans in finding meaningful employment. Stable employment can provide structure and purpose in their lives, reducing the risk of relapse.
  9. Encourage Healthy Activities: Promote physical fitness and healthy lifestyle choices. Regular exercise and a balanced diet, taking up a hobby, can have a positive impact on mental health and addiction recovery.
  10. Veteran Peer Support Groups: Connect veterans with peer support groups where they can share experiences and coping strategies with others who have faced similar challenges.
  11. Access to VA Services: Help veterans navigate the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) system to access mental health services, addiction treatment, and other benefits they may be entitled to.
  12. Awareness of Triggers: Be aware of potential triggers for their alcoholism or mental health issues and help them avoid or cope with these triggers. This might include avoiding certain places or situations.
  13. Family Counseling: Encourage family counseling and therapy to help families understand and support their veteran loved ones effectively.
  14. Emergency Contacts: Make sure veterans have access to emergency contacts, including crisis hotlines and local mental health crisis centers.
  15. Advocate for Policy Changes: Advocate for policies that improve access to mental health and addiction treatment for veterans, as well as policies that address the unique challenges they face in transitioning to civilian life.
  16. Stay Informed: Stay informed about the latest developments in the field of mental health and addiction treatment to provide veterans with the most up-to-date information and resources. Veterans And Substance Abuse: Scope, Risks, And Treatment – Addiction Resource

Remember that each veteran’s journey is unique, and the level of support they need may vary. Being patient, empathetic, and persistent in offering help can make a significant difference in the lives of veterans struggling with mental health and alcoholism.

Further Reading

Alcoholism Symptoms And Warning Signs – Addiction Center


Alcoholism among veterans is a complex and multifaceted issue rooted in the unique challenges they face during and after military service. Society must recognize the struggles of veterans and offer them the support and understanding they need to overcome alcoholism. By providing access to mental health services, addiction treatment, and a strong support system, we can help veterans on their journey to recovery and healing. The road may be difficult, but with the right resources and support, veterans can regain control of their lives and find hope for a brighter future.

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Nitrous Oxide (NO) Balloons & Multiple Sclerosis

Nitrous Oxide Balloons and Canisters.
Image Credit: Compass -uk.org

Nitrous Oxide (NO) Balloons & Multiple Sclerosis – 30 seconds being high to a lifetime of MS.

Laughing Gas (Nitrous Oxide) or Balloons

Laughing gas is being banned in the UK (nitrous oxide otherwise known as balloons, hippy crack, or nos to young people).

The risks of being high for 30 seconds and living a life with MS.

Michael Gove has this morning announced plans for the government to ban Nitrous oxide.

In the United Kingdom, nitrous oxide is the second most prevalent drug among young adults aged 16 to 24 years, after cannabis, according to the European Union drugs monitoring agency EMCDDA. 

About Michael Gove: Michael Gove – Wikipedia

Michael Gove Contact Details: Contact information for Michael Gove – MPs and Lords – UK Parliament

About Sophy Ridge: Sophy Ridge – Wikipedia

Sophy Ridge Contact Details: Sophy Ridge on Sunday & The Take (@RidgeOnSunday) / Twitter

Sophy Ridge asked: ‘Are you really going to give people a criminal record for a 30-second high from laughing gas?’

When asked if the plans were hypocritical given the fact that some MPs have been known to take drugs including himself, he said ‘No…because I’ve learned’.

Nitrous oxide set to be banned in crackdown on laughing gas (msn.com)

Editors Thoughts:

Nitrous Oxide is being used in many industries from catering to hospitals, and dentistry, whilst banning will only heighten the black market it would be better to enlighten people especially in schools and on social media the devasting effects of using nitrous oxide for recreational purposes. Hospitals are already restricting gas and air pain relief in maternity wards.

Why has this bill taken so long to come to light? The powers that be should educate young people with media amplification about the dangers of using recreational drugs and the consequences. Obviously, there will be people that will take risks and worry about the aftermath later.

If more was done about teaching the masses the repercussions of taking drugs, more people will be inclined to think twice”.

If social media was flooded with dangers, more lives would be saved.

What is Nitrous Oxide

Nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas, is a colorless and odorless gas with the chemical formula N2O. It is a non-flammable gas that is commonly used as a mild anesthetic in medicine and dentistry. Nitrous oxide is also used as a propellant in aerosol cans and whipped cream dispensers, as well as in the food industry for its preservative properties.

Nitrous oxide was first discovered in 1772 by the English chemist and natural philosopher Joseph Priestley. He observed that the gas had the ability to extinguish flames and wrote about its properties in his book, “Experiments and Observations on Different Kinds of Air.” It was not until the early 1800s that nitrous oxide began to be used for medical purposes.

Nitrous oxide works by suppressing the nervous system and reducing the sensation of pain. When inhaled, it enters the bloodstream and travels to the brain, where it acts on certain receptors to produce a sense of euphoria and relaxation. This is why it has been dubbed “laughing gas” – some people report feeling giddy or giggly after inhaling it.

In medicine, nitrous oxide is often used in combination with other anesthetics to produce a state of sedation for patients undergoing minor surgical procedures, such as dental work or endoscopy. It is also sometimes used during childbirth to help manage pain and reduce anxiety.

Outside of the medical setting, nitrous oxide is sometimes used recreationally as a “party drug.” In these situations, it is often inhaled from a balloon or canister and can produce feelings of euphoria, relaxation, and altered consciousness. However, it is important to note that nitrous oxide can be dangerous when used improperly, and can cause serious health problems or even death in high doses.

One of the potential dangers of nitrous oxide is oxygen deprivation. When inhaled in large quantities, nitrous oxide can displace oxygen in the bloodstream, which can lead to oxygen deprivation and cause damage to the brain and other organs. This is why it is important to only use nitrous oxide in a controlled medical or recreational setting, and to never inhale it directly from a canister or balloon.

In conclusion, nitrous oxide is a gas with a long history of use in medicine and industry. It has both therapeutic and recreational applications but can be dangerous when used improperly. If you are considering using nitrous oxide for any reason, it is important to do so under the guidance of a medical professional or in a controlled, safe setting.

What Is Nitrous Oxide Used For

Nitrous oxide is used for various purposes, both in medical and non-medical settings. Here are some of the most common uses of nitrous oxide:

  1. Anesthesia: Nitrous oxide is widely used as a mild anesthetic agent in dentistry and surgery. It is often used in combination with other anesthetics to produce sedation and pain relief for minor surgical procedures.
  2. Pain management during labor: Nitrous oxide can be used to manage pain and reduce anxiety during labor and delivery.
  3. Whipped cream dispensers: Nitrous oxide is used as a propellant in whipped cream dispensers, where it helps to create a creamy, fluffy texture.
  4. Aerosol cans: Nitrous oxide is used as a propellant in some aerosol cans, such as cooking sprays and hair sprays.
  5. Food preservation: Nitrous oxide is used in the food industry as a preservative, as it can inhibit the growth of bacteria and other microorganisms.
  6. Automotive industry: Nitrous oxide is used as a performance-enhancing substance in the automotive industry, where it is often used to boost the power output of high-performance engines.
  7. Recreational use: Nitrous oxide can be used recreationally to produce a sense of euphoria and altered consciousness. However, this use is illegal in many countries and can be dangerous when used improperly.

Nitrous oxide has a wide range of applications, from medical and industrial.

Can the use of nitrous oxide can multiple sclerosis

Nitrous oxide, commonly known as laughing gas, is a colorless and odorless gas that has been used for its anesthetic properties in medical and dental procedures for over a century. While it is generally considered safe when used as directed, there is growing concern that the use of nitrous oxide may exacerbate or even trigger autoimmune disorders such as multiple sclerosis.

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic autoimmune disorder that affects the central nervous system, causing a range of symptoms such as numbness, tingling, weakness, and difficulty with balance and coordination. The exact cause of MS is not fully understood, but it is believed to involve a combination of genetic and environmental factors.

One potential environmental factor that has been implicated in the development and progression of MS is nitrous oxide. Nitrous oxide is known to inhibit the activity of an enzyme called methionine synthase, which is essential for the production of myelin, the protective coating that surrounds nerve fibers in the brain and spinal cord.

In individuals with MS, the immune system mistakenly attacks and damages the myelin, leading to the characteristic symptoms of the disease. By inhibiting methionine synthase, nitrous oxide may further disrupt myelin production and exacerbate the underlying autoimmune process.

Several studies have suggested a link between nitrous oxide use and the development or progression of MS. One study published in the journal Anesthesiology found that patients with MS who received nitrous oxide during surgery were more likely to experience a relapse of their symptoms within six months compared to those who did not receive nitrous oxide.

Another study published in the journal Neurology found that exposure to nitrous oxide was associated with an increased risk of developing MS among individuals with a genetic predisposition to the disease. The authors of the study concluded that nitrous oxide may act as a trigger for the autoimmune process in susceptible individuals.

Nitrous oxide, commonly known as laughing gas, is a colorless, odorless gas with several medical uses. It is used as an anesthetic agent during dental procedures, as an analgesic agent during labor, and as a recreational drug due to its euphoric effects. However, there is some concern about the use of nitrous oxide in individuals with multiple sclerosis (MS) and other autoimmune disorders.

Multiple sclerosis is a chronic autoimmune disorder that affects the central nervous system (CNS). It is characterized by inflammation and damage to the myelin sheath, which is a protective covering around nerve fibers. The symptoms of MS vary depending on the location and extent of the damage to the CNS. Common symptoms include muscle weakness, fatigue, difficulty with coordination and balance, and vision problems.

There is some evidence to suggest that the use of nitrous oxide may exacerbate the symptoms of MS. Nitrous oxide can increase the levels of homocysteine in the body, which is a non-protein amino acid that has been linked to increased inflammation and damage to the CNS. Studies have shown that individuals with MS have higher levels of homocysteine than individuals without MS and that elevated homocysteine levels may be a risk factor for disease progression.

In addition to MS, there is also concern about the use of nitrous oxide in individuals with other autoimmune disorders, such as rheumatoid arthritis and lupus. These disorders are characterized by inflammation throughout the body, and nitrous oxide may exacerbate this inflammation.

Despite these concerns, the use of nitrous oxide in individuals with MS and other autoimmune disorders is still considered safe in most cases under medical supervision such as anesthesia. However, it is important for individuals with these conditions to discuss the use of nitrous oxide with their healthcare provider before undergoing any procedures that require its use.

In some cases, alternative anesthesia options may be considered for individuals with MS and other autoimmune disorders. For example, regional anesthesia, such as an epidural or spinal block, may be used instead of general anesthesia. These types of anesthesia do not involve the use of nitrous oxide and may be a safer option for individuals with autoimmune disorders.


While the use of nitrous oxide is generally considered safe for industries that use it, there is some concern about its use in individuals with MS and other autoimmune disorders. Therefore the risks of using nitrous oxide for recreational purposes should be avoided at all costs.

It is important for individuals with autoimmune conditions to discuss the use of nitrous oxide with their healthcare provider before undergoing any procedures that require its use. Alternative anesthesia options may be considered in some cases to minimize the potential risks associated with nitrous oxide.

With the dangers of nitrous oxide causing multiple sclerosis the powers that be should do more to promote the pitfalls through television and social media advertising.

Nitric oxide modulation for autoimmune disease | Dr. K. News (drknews.com)

The role of nitric oxide in multiple sclerosis – The Lancet Neurology

Nitrous Oxide Side Effects: Long Term, Short Term, Overdose, and More (healthline.com)

Further Reading:



Nitrous Oxide | Facts about Nitrous Oxide::DAN 24/7 (dan247.org.uk)





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