The Mental Tool Box And How It Helps Recovery
When dealing with any sort of mental health issue or neurodivergent diagnosis, developing a set of coping mechanisms and skills to deal with the negative side of these attributes is essential to coping with the resulting problems in a healthy way. When it comes to substance abuse, this is especially true. Creating a set of skills as a mental tool box as a way to help persevere through active addiction is key to recovery.
With this tool box, skills like de-escalation, coping with triggers, mindfulness activities, and general methods of mitigating any negative effects of your diagnosis become accessible to you for your use in your time of need. These skills are a primary component of cognitive behavioral therapy, which relies on the conscious efforts towards behavioral change made by the individual. American Psychological Association. . What is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy? Clinical Practice Guideline for the Treatment of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. APA Div. 12 , you can jump-start your long-term recovery timeline and establish important skills for reaching sobriety.
Stage : Early Abstinence
Once you have made a commitment to continue treatment for your substance abuse problem, you will enter the second stage of rehab, known as early abstinence. Early abstinence from alcohol is significantly associated with positive treatment outcomes.ï»¿ï»¿ This can be the toughest stage to cope with because of many factors, including:
- Psychological dependence
- Triggers that can tempt you into a relapse
Challenges at this stage of treatment include cravings, social pressure to drink, and high-risk situations that can trigger alcohol consumption. It is during this early abstinence stage that your trained addiction counselor will begin to teach you the coping skills that you need to lead a sober lifestyle. The tools that you learn to use now will help you throughout your recovery.
Early abstinence issues that are worked on at this point in treatment including learning about the physical and psychological aspects of withdrawal, learning to identify alcohol use triggers, and learning how to handle alcohol cravings without drinking.
Some strategies that can be helpful include:ï»¿ï»¿
- Encouraging participation in healthy activities
- Finding alternative behaviors to engage in rather than turning to alcohol
- Participating in self-help groups that offer support and information
- Recognizing environmental triggers that lead to cravings, including people, places, and things
Stage : Advanced Recovery
After approximately five years of abstinence, you will reach the fourth and final stage of your rehab: advanced recovery. It is that this point that you take all the tools and skills that you have learned during your rehab counseling and put them to use living a satisfying, fulfilling life.
Strategies that can help at this point include:
- Creating long-term goals
- Establishing a consistent daily schedule
- Forming social relationships with people who do not drinkï»¿ï»¿
- Participating in recreational activities that do not involve alcohol
- Finding ways to reach beyond oneself in order to seek happiness and fulfillment, whether it involves religion, spirituality, community work, or social activism
Learning to implement these strategies not only will help you remain sober, but you will also have the skills to become a healthier person, a better spouse and parent, a productive member of society, and a good neighbor and citizen. Recovery is much more than merely staying sober. It’s learning to live a happier and healthier life.
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Seek Help For Substance Use Disorder
Substance use is notoriously difficult to deal with, but recovery is within your reach. After receiving comprehensive care aimed at helping you begin your recovery timeline, it is essential to begin creating a community to support you in your time of need. Then, with the right set of tools, you can sustain your recovery journey to last you in the long term.
How To Stay Sober
Some say the best advice for newcomers to recovery on how to stay sober is simple: “Don’t drink or use, and go to meetings.” If that formula works for you, then by all means, do it.
But for most people, staying sober isn’t that straightforward. The more strategies you learn to identify triggers, cope with stress, and manage your new sober life, the easier it is to prevent relapse.
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Deal With Past Mistakes
Most people who make their way into recovery have left a lot of pain and suffering in their wake. Feeling guilty or ashamed of past behavior or actions during active addiction is natural and healthy.
Shame is having negative beliefs about yourself and your self-worth. Guilt is having negative feelings about your past behavior. People in recovery can experience a lot of shame simply for having become addicted in the first place.
If these emotions become excessive, they can hold you back from recovery. If you are trying to maintain a sober lifestyle, those feelings can become toxic and contribute to relapse if you don’t deal with them properly.
Most who find recovery also find that they have emotionally damaged friends and loved ones and have many regrets about their past decisions. To avoid relapse and stay sober, it’s important that you take the necessary steps to learn from your past mistakes and begin to live life more responsibly.
Substitute Addictions Can Be Sneaky
If you attended an addiction treatment centre then you are probably aware of the dangers of substituting alcohol for another drug of choice or vice versa which is why complete abstinence from all substances is recommended. As well, it is important to be aware of the less talked about process addictions such as gambling, food, shopping, sex, or love that can also be used to fulfil the void of your previous addiction.
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Addiction Is A Brain Disease
It is helpful to remember that addiction is a disease of the brain, like asthma is a disease of the lungs. Addiction is not a moral failing. You are not a bad or flawed person. However, the reality of most diseases, including addiction, is that they require ongoing care to manage. Being in recovery is a lifelong commitment that will not always come easy.
Maintain Regular Routine Schedules
Creating and establishing healthy routines for recovery is a big part of creating a stable, productive schedule that can help decrease substance cravings and triggers. Incorporate a steady routine into your daily life that includes different parts of your mental tool box like self-care and coping mechanisms. In this way, you can start to actively combat and fight old habits concerning your substance use and developing your life beyond dependency.
For example, if you like to use physical activity to aid in suppressing your substance cravings, try including a brief workout or run into your morning routine. Similarly, if you frame cooking yourself a wholesome meal as a form of self-care, choosing a night in your weekly routine for a big or fancy dinner could be a helpful part of establishing a positive routine aimed at keeping you on your long-term recovery timeline. Jarvis, M., Williams, J., Hurford, M., Lindsay, D., Lincoln, P., Giles, L., & Safarian, T. . Appropriate use of drug testing in clinical addiction medicine. Journal of addiction Continue reading
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How Long Can I Stay In Rehab
The amount of time you can stay in a rehab program may depend on your individual needs, such as the severity of your drug use or alcohol abuse, the form of treatment you need, and more.
The length of stay for a long-term residential treatment program may be affected by the rehab facility, including its ability to accommodate patients long-term and program availability.
Tips For Overcoming An Addiction
Quitting is a different experience for everyone. Some people find it empowering. Others find it painful, difficult, and frustrating, sometimes needing many attempts before achieving their goal. Still, others discover new sides to themselves during the quitting process .
There is no “right” way to feel while you are quitting. However, if you are feeling depressed or find yourself constantly wanting to return to the addictive behavior, you should seek support and treatment.
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What Is Samhsa’s National Helpline
SAMHSAs National Helpline, , or TTY: is a confidential, free, 24-hour-a-day, 365-day-a-year, information service, in English and Spanish, for individuals and family members facing mental and/or substance use disorders. This service provides referrals to local treatment facilities, support groups, and community-based organizations.
What Are The Benefits Of Long
In general, long-term treatment lends to achieving addiction recovery.
Research from the National Institute on Drug Abuse shows that those who get into and remain in treatment for at least 90 days show more effective results.
These results can include lessened or stopped drug or alcohol use, lessened or stopped criminal activity, and more.
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The Importance of Aftercare
Even when someone has reached maintenance, it doesnt mean theyre cured of addiction. Like diabetes or heart disease, its a chronic condition that requires major lifestyle changes to keep under control. As such, its crucial that people in addiction recovery make continuous active efforts to maintain sobriety. Complacency or a sense that the work is done once you reach maintenance is often a one-way ticket to recovery relapse.
Aftercare helps you stay on track and keep practicing what you learned while in rehab. Whether its individual therapy, support groups, 12-step meetings or an outpatient treatment program, we recommend staying in some form of aftercare for at least one or two years after you complete a course of rehab program.
How Long Does Detox Take
Many people starting professional addiction treatment will begin the path to recovery with a period of detoxification. Detox is a general term used to describe the bodys process of removing alcohol and other drugs from the system.
When people talk about how long it takes to detox, they are referring to the amount of time it takes for withdrawal symptoms to present themselves and subside. Withdrawal symptoms are uncomfortable physical and mental health effects that arise when drugs disrupt the balance of neurotransmitters in the brain. On average, medical detox treatment tends to last for four days, as this is how long most acute symptoms of withdrawal last.
However, its important to keep in mind that the length of detox can vary depending on the substances used by the individual. For example, the number of days it takes to work through acute alcohol withdrawal symptoms will be different from the days needed to detox from other drugs. With some short-acting drugs, like methamphetamine, detox begins within a few hours after last use and acute withdrawal symptoms resolve in as little as three days. However, it may take ten days to detox from alcohol.
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Celebrate Milestones And Dont Be Afraid To Ask For Help
Self-sabotage is one of the most common reasons why recovering addicts relapse, so being open and honest with both yourself, and the people around you about your current feelings is an important step towards long-term recovery.
At ANA Treatment Centres, we offer detoxification programmes and addiction treatment programmes that aim to support long term recovery. Our aim is to help our clients rebuild their lives, gain confidence and self-worth, and believe they can live a healthy, responsible and productive life, free from addictive substances.
If you are affected by addiction, or you have concerns about a friend or family member, please dont hesitate to contact us.
Does Relapse To Drug Use Mean Treatment Has Failed
No. The chronic nature of addiction means that for some people relapse, or a return to drug use after an attempt to stop, can be part of the process, but newer treatments are designed to help with relapse prevention. Relapse rates for drug use are similar to rates for other chronic medical illnesses. If people stop following their medical treatment plan, they are likely to relapse.
Treatment of chronic diseases involves changing deeply rooted behaviors, and relapse doesnt mean treatment has failed. When a person recovering from an addiction relapses, it indicates that the person needs to speak with their doctor to resume treatment, modify it, or try another treatment.52
While relapse is a normal part of recovery, for some drugs, it can be very dangerouseven deadly. If a person uses as much of the drug as they did before quitting, they can easily overdose because their bodies are no longer adapted to their previous level of drug exposure. An overdose happens when the person uses enough of a drug to produce uncomfortable feelings, life-threatening symptoms, or death.
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Mile High Recoverya Long
At Mile High Recovery, we focus on your best recovery outcomes. If you decide to engage in long-term rehab, you will have access to numerous therapies, group support, and 12-step programs, as well as family therapy, equine therapy, and the opportunity to focus wholly on your own wellbeing.
Let us help you sort through the options out there for addiction treatment. Contact us via online form or phone . Our staff is ready to answer your questions and support you on your journey.
A Life More Ordinary: Surrendering To Mainstream Social Responsibilities
In order to make sober life meaningful, drug-related elements of identity had to be replaced. Most participants initially felt hesitant to take on ordinary prosocial roles due to a conviction that regular life was boring and limited. However, alongside the integration of new roles, such as that of being an employee or drug-free friend, this conviction was gradually replaced with an appreciation of being accepted and needed. Throughout recovery, such personal affiliations gave rise to a wider sense of being a fully included member of society.
The feeling that I am needed by others, I think thats important. Because if I feel useless, I act useless. Working with my colleagues has made me take a role at work which makes it easier for me to stay away from drugs. My closest colleagues have meant a lot to me.
Before I got the new position I felt that something has to happen now. I dont know what it will be, but I sort of need new things to learn, new challenges, to develop.Colleagues at work, and learning something at work, right, it was awesome to be able to tile a fat bathroom, right, or to build a chimney. I mean, I could drive around XX and point out: I worked there, I did that, a mall, you know, I tiled that sh*t. I did that, thats quite cool.
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There Is No One Way In Addiction Recovery
While there are many suggestions as to what will help, the fact is there is no one way to achieve recovery. At first it will be beneficial take advice from those in long-term recovery, but use it then to find what works best for you. For example, some people find meditation is a crucial aspect of their recovery, while others find that it does not help at all.
Form Friendships That Include People In And Out Of Recovery
Of course making friends who are also in recovery is important but some of these friends will relapse. Forming friendships with stable people outside of recovery will help to create a balanced life. Make time for family and long-term friends who understand what you have been through and are supportive of your new lifestyle.
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Develop A Structured Schedule
Having a chaotic or disorganized lifestyle can also hinder your recovery. It’s important to develop a structured daily and weekly schedule and stick to it.
A structured routine will help you achieve other goals in your life, whether they are short-term or long-term .
Staying sober is a high priority, but developing and pursuing other goals can help you maintain that sobriety.
Drug Addiction And Alcoholism: Long
Principles of Drug Addiction Treatment: A Research-Based Guide states that, Remaining in treatment for an adequate period of time is critical. The appropriate duration for an individual depends on the type and degree of the patients problems and needs. Research indicates that most addicted individuals need at least 3 months in treatment to significantly reduce or stop their drug use and that the best outcomes occur with longer durations of treatment. Recovery from drug addiction is a long-term process and frequently requires multiple episodes of treatment. As with other chronic illnesses, relapses to drug abuse can occur and should signal a need for treatment to be reinstated or adjusted. Because individuals often leave treatment prematurely, programs should include strategies to engage and keep patients in treatment.
My experience with treatment programs followed a similar pattern. I had been to treatment twice, each time for 30 days, and returned home upon graduation. I associated with the same people. I visited the same places. And I always relapsed.
I was blessed to have parents who refused to enable my addictive behavior anymore. Mom and Dad resolved to say no to my pleas to return home. I faced two options: go out on my own or enroll in a long-term recovery program. After carefully weighing my options, I made the decision to go to a long-term recovery program.
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Accepting Personal Responsibility And Autonomy: It Has To Be Me It Cannot Be You
For most participants, later-stage recovery was described as living life flexibly yet in line with personal values and preferences. They described a feeling of personal wholeness, based on autonomy, resilience, and integration. These self-perceptions provided support for consistent self-agency and flexibility in the face of life challenges. Relapse was, at this point, mostly perceived as a minor issue.
Its myself. I am the captain of my ship. It would hurt as much the next time, if a life crisis like that were to come, that someone dies or But my experience indicates that I most likely will do the right thing then. Because I have done so earlier.
For most participants, long-term recovery required self-acceptance and overcoming self-stigma. They had to accept themselves as reformed, drug-free persons with weaknesses and peculiarities and to internalize a feeling of being good enough. Combating self-stigma required letting go of negative prejudicial beliefs, such as, Once a drug addict, always a drug addict or I have less value than other people.
I dunno . I dont think about it much anymore, I just kind of get up and start the day. I dont have many fixed routines. I am very down to earth, I just get up and drink coffee, and then Im off really.