Dr. Cardwell Nuckols, a professional described as “one of the most influential clinical and spiritual trainers in North America,” recently led a presentation on the Rosebud Reservation.

He’s worked in behavioral medicine for over 35 years. He’s viewed as one of the world’s leading experts on addiction and recovery. http://www.cnuckols.com/

Dr. Nuckols believes the only thing that allows us to get through a crisis is spirituality. When you lack something within, you will look outside (i.e. alcohol and drugs) to find it. Thus, people often try to find their higher power in drugs. When someone is lost in alcohol and drug use, they are trying to find something greater than themselves.

Our communities are experiencing an alarming spike in meth and opioid use. Unfortunately, a majority of our Tribal citizens are affected by a drug addicted family member. Our people caught up in these highly addictive drugs face an uphill battle to recovery.

On Rosebud, meth related arrests more than tripled in 2017, compared to 2016. There were over 60 applicants seeking treatment in Rosebud’s 16 bed meth treatment facility in the last half of 2017.

Dr. Nuckols believes that no matter what drug you use (i.e. alcohol, meth, opiates), it will knock the top of your brain offline. Meth will also exaggerate the aging process. People who are addicted to drugs just don’t seem to have any top down control of their own behavior.

When people get high on meth, the crash they experience is pure anguish. People are overwhelmed with negative emotions when they are coming down. Withdrawals can last up to 2 weeks. And it will take 12-18 months for the user’s body/brain system to correct itself.

Many of our relatives are addicted to pain pills. Some have died from an overdose. The regular use of pain killers stops the production of endorphins, which are the hormones that help us feel pleasure rather than pain.