Movin' on with Nellie: Drugs, alcohol injure grey matter

Patt Morgan-Lloyd called to see how I was doing. So, did my friend Karli north of Colorado Springs.  Then a friend of my son’s called and another of his friends messaged me. It’s been a hard week dealing with choices gone bad. So, I posted a Facebook note:  Alcohol Destroys. That’s English for booze spews.

It’s all about alcohol and what the lubricant liquid does to a human’s brain and how it can compound signals work and don’t work in the frontal lobe and where impulses are controlled. Ultimately, I’m looking for a fix.  A fix to correct the world of imbibing and injecting or cooking on a spoon.  All of us are falling victim to this drug and alcohol and the exploding opioid epidemic.  For generations, we have seen the abuse of alcohol and street drugs.

Like diabetes means sugar is a danger to the internal combustion engine known as the human body, so does alcohol reach in and snatch suitable conduct and replace with fumbling thoughts and uncontrolled ravings.

In the 70s, I remember that we would talk about characters gone tripping on LSD, but there was nothing like we are experiencing with the 90s, and first and second decades of this century.  One of my former students was tall, handsome and so technically smart. He was working on a computer degree at the community college and his future was bright.  But he was also struggling with alcohol and drug addictions.  He succumbed and hooked up with others on drugs when the trio decided to rob a drug dealer.  Only the plan went violent and this student stood by while the leader attacked and bludgeoned the dealer to death.  The perpetrators were not caught right away; but their days in court came.  Though the former whiz in my class was only a bystander and did not engage in the violence at the killer’s level, he is now serving a long, long sentence in prison where there’s no help to heal the brain.

If we look, there are signs everywhere that as a society we need to take action to save our sons, daughters, fathers, mothers, other relatives and friends.  The opioid epidemic and the increased alcohol abuse is interrupting brains and removing consciences.

These people stressed out on drugs and alcohol are in the throes of a disease that can be treated but is not being treated.  Like traumatic brain injury may rewire the brain; so too, does mind altering drugs and substances like alcohol.  Sometimes even the neurologist or psych-neurologist doesn’t catch what Dr. Phil McGraw and his board have found.

For instance, Dr. Phil has treated persons accused of domestic violence who have multiple circumstances like head trauma, alcohol abuse, drug abuse, anger, moodiness and paranoia. He works with the courts to get alternative to jail time as a long stint in treatment.  First, to really see what the head injuries are, tests that delve into MRI and other diagnostics are need. On Dr. Phil McGraw’s web site ( “The Lawlis Peavey PsychoNeuroPlasticity (PNP) Center (located 12.5 miles from DFW Airport) has been founded with the primary mission of providing objective diagnoses and treatment programs for individuals dealing with problems involving neurological issues and related symptoms. Because multiple sources can impinge on functioning, a broad integrative assessment approach is used to develop an individualized treatment plan. Through a multifaceted diagnostic and treatment program, a multidisciplinary team of health care professionals will find solutions to the variety of challenges in neurological and psychological development…”

A brain-trauma expert also performed exams on a man with long-term rage. He explains.

There’s help like this out there. Please reach out.

—Nelda Curtiss is a former substance-prevention media specialist, journalist, and retired college professor who enjoys writing and fine arts. Contact her at [email protected]