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Dulaney discusses female addiction at Female Factor

Dr. Paul Dulaney is a board-certified OB/GYN at Troy Regional Medical Center. But that does not tell the whole story of the 1997 graduate of the University of South Alabama College of Medicine.

Dulaney is also board-certified in medical detoxification, which is the first part of the rehabilitation process for recovery from addiction. It’s the process of clearing toxins from the body of a patient who is dependent on substances of abuse. Medical detox is designed to manage the symptoms of withdrawal that follow cessation and help patients overcome physical dependency.

So, what’s the connection between OB/GYN and Medical Detox? Dulaney told the participants at Female Factor Wednesday that the two are not strangers. And it was that relationship that fostered his passion for caring for those who suffer from addictions and fueled his desire to walk them back into society and to lead productive lives.

Working with women, Dulaney became increasingly aware of the growing number of women who are dealing with addictions, of which smoking is number one.

Dulaney said addictions in women often began with a male and are accelerated through a relationship with a male.

Addictions superficially fill needs.

However, once a need is established, the pleasures of the rewards become increasingly more important, more addictive.

In order for a person with an addiction to avoid the misery of what they are feeling and to feel  ‘normal,’ their dependency on their addiction increases and heightens. To break from the addiction, the pathways set by the drugs have to be rewired, Dulaney said.

“The goal of addictive medicine is to put the brakes on addictions and save lives,” he said. “Those with addictions get to a point where they can no longer put on the brakes. Addictive medicine gives them back the brakes.”

Dulaney asked the women at Female Factor to close their eyes. He asked them to envision a closed box and then to open that box to see what was inside.

Inside the box was a carrot, he told the women.

He asked the women what feelings the carrot invoked. There was laughter.

He then asked how they would have felt if the box had contained a warm, apple pie.

There were smiles and mumblings of great anticipation.

Dulaney said that’s how it is with those who are dealing with addictions.

“Except for them, everything is a carrot,” he said. “And, for just one time, they would like to have an apple pie.”

Troy Regional Medical Center’s Medical Detox Unit offers that opportunity for those who are dealing with addiction. TRMC’s Medical Detox Unit provides care for those who are dealing with addictions and are seeking a place where they can put the brakes on their addictions. And a place where the box contains a warm, apple pie.