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  • Take the First Step in Las Vegas

    Desert Hope is a beautiful oasis with modern charm located in Las Vegas, Nevada. We provide all levels of care from detox, in-patient, outpatient and sober living.

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  • A New Life Awaits

    Start your recovery at our spa-like facility in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area. Holistic therapies, chef-prepared meals, and LGBTQ+ support are among the many features of our premier drug and alcohol treatment program.

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  • The Best Place to Recover in Orange County

    Laguna Treatment Hospital is located in Orange County, CA. The first Chemical Dependency Recovery Hospital in the OC, we offer safe medical detox, mental health support, and wellness programs.

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  • Start Recovery at Our Southern Resort

    Take a step back from your life and get the help you need at our premier drug and alcohol addiction center. Nestled in the countryside 1.5 hours from Memphis, Oxford gives you the support you need in a calm and beautiful setting.

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  • Recovery Forecast includes Tropical Weather

    Your recovery can start at either of two premier drug and alcohol treatment facilities in the Greater Miami area - Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood, FL. Our specialties include treatment for veterans and first responders.

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  • Sunny Florida Welcomes You

    Retreat to the sunny climate of Tampa, Florida for a stay at the gold standard of treatment facilities. We offer customized care plans to help you on your recovery journey.

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  • Helping New Englanders Find Recovery for Over 30 years

    Escape to the countryside to recovery in New Jersey’s premier drug rehab & treatment center. Located only an hour from New York City.

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We are pleased to announce that we are now in-network with Anthem Blue Cross. Now in-network with Anthem Blue Cross.

What Are the Dangers of Anabolic Steroids and the Side Effects of Use?

Illicit steroids may be smuggled into the U.S. illegally and are sold online or obtained in gyms, typically in an effort for people to boost athletic performance or improve physical appearance by increasing muscle mass and strength. Anabolic steroids are synthetic substances that relate to testosterone, the male sex hormone.

Anabolic steroids are a Schedule III controlled substance regulated by the United States DEA. Anabolic steroids can be legally obtained when prescribed by doctors to treat hormone problems in men, including delayed puberty, and muscle loss from cancer and AIDS.

Illicit steroids may be smuggled into the U.S. illegally and are sold online or obtained in gyms, typically in an effort for people to boost athletic performance or improve physical appearance by increasing muscle mass and strength. The National Institute of Drug Abuse indicates that the majority of people who misuse anabolic steroids are male weightlifters in their 20s and 30s.

Anabolic steroids are sometimes referred to as Arnolds, juice, pumpers, roids, stackers, and weight gainers. They’re available in creams, gels, capsules, tablets, and via an injectable solution.

Adverse Effects of Steroid Abuse

Use of anabolic steroids may have a wide range of adverse health effects depending on the age and sex of the user, the type, amount and dose of anabolic steroid used, as well as the length of time used.

Men may experience:

  • Shrinking testicles.
  • Lower sperm count/infertility.
  • Enlargement of breast tissue.

Women may experience:

  • Deepening of the voice.
  • Decrease in breast size.
  • Male-pattern baldness.
  • Enlarged clitoris.
  • Increased facial and body hair.

In teens:

  • Stunted growth.
  • Acne.
  • Early onset of puberty and sexual development (males only).

Mental health effects of steroid use in both men and women may include dramatic mood swings, impaired judgement, and increased levels of aggression and hostility (commonly referred to as “roid rage”).

Longer-term adverse health effects of anabolic steroid use include liver abnormalities and disease, kidney damage, and an increased risk of heart disease. In 2017, the American Heart Association published a study comparing male weightlifters age 34-54 who used anabolic steroids with non-users. The steroid users had higher coronary plaque volume vs. non-users and 71% had impairment of their heart’s ability to pump blood efficiently.

Steroid Addiction and Treatment

Support is often necessary to keep individuals from relapsing and using steroids again.

Use of steroids often starts with someone’s desire to obtain a physical image that’s fairly unattainable through diet and exercise alone. In other instances, it’s about performance and athletic achievement rather than how one looks.

Steroids aren’t like typical illicit drugs that most people abuse. They don’t produce an immediate reward or “high.” Users don’t experience a rush or a sense of euphoria. Anabolic steroids also don’t physiologically inhibit the user from experiencing pain or instill a sense of calm or peacefulness.

Despite this—as well as considering the immediate and long-term adverse health effects and the significant expense and effort taken to obtain them—users of anabolic steroids continue to use and report feeling good about themselves and their appearance. When they stop, users report experiencing withdrawal symptoms, such as mood swings, fatigue, restlessness, loss of appetite, insomnia, reduced sex drive, and they still feel the need to compulsively use them.

Treatment of anabolic steroid abuse as a result of body dysmorphic disorder will typically include the prescription of antidepressants. Antidepressant medication can also be helpful in eliminating the experience of withdrawal symptoms. In some cases, hormone therapy may be needed to restore hormonal balance.

Ongoing support is often necessary to keep individuals from relapsing and using steroids again. Therapy is vital, and support groups can be a terrific way for individuals to forge friendships with others who have struggled with the same issues, while also helping themselves heal from addiction. With comprehensive treatment and solid support, full recovery is possible.

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