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Read through our recovery blog posts, articles and inspirational shared stories

Cumberland Heights

In 2017, Live Science – a website that publishes information related to news, technology, health and more, explained that actor Ben Affleck entered rehabilitation for alcoholism for at least his second time; a Facebook post published by him stated, “…Something I’ve dealt with in the past and will continue to confront.” Ben Affleck is just one of many celebrities – and people – across the world, who’ve battled with sobriety. As much as relapse is downplayed, the reality is that it’s quite common – and of all things, it doesn’t mean you (or anyone) have failed. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) notes that relapse is less of a sign of failure, and more of a sign that certain aspects of treatment need to become incorporated, changed or reinforced – and … Continue reading Why Relapse Doesn’t Mean You’ve Failed

Cumberland Heights

It’s easy to believe that addiction recovery is a “quick fix” – that if you simply attend a week-long treatment program, all of those cravings for substances will go away. The reality is that addiction is a deep-rooted disease that developed over time – and just as it took some time to develop, it will take some time to recover from, too. One of the most common misconceptions about treatment is that it will be quick and easy, and this one of the many reasons why a person may drop out of treatment or have to come back, time and time again. If you or a loved one are currently considering seeking treatment for addiction, it’s time to get down the facts: time spent in treatment is crucial, and length of time … Continue reading Research Studies Show That The Length of Time Spent in Treatment Can Influence Your Recovery

No matter how hard we can work towards living a happier, healthier life, there will always be moments of trial and tribulation – because as human beings living in an imperfect world, that’s a constant occurrence. It waxes and wanes, but those moments of despair are what make us stronger in the long-run; unfortunately, many people fail to surround themselves with the proper support system that will help them see their way through these hard times, and that’s when a person can become even more susceptible to mental illness and other hardships. The University of Minnesota explains that social support, “…means having friends and other people, including family, to turn to in times of need or crisis to give you a broader focus and positive self-image. Social support enhances the quality of … Continue reading Navigating the Twists and Turns of Recovery With A Strong Support System

In the movies, we often see and hear of people living in extremely poor conditions – and most portrayals depict individuals having become addicted to a substance and later losing everything they own because of it. The National Council on Drug Abuse states that in many other instances, however, it’s the other way around – and when poverty strikes, it becomes even harder to not abuse substances because people may be trying to find a “way out” – even if it’s not the healthiest way. By gaining a better understanding of the different instances that arise throughout the country, we can hopefully open up a clearer mind – and eye – to the troubling event of addiction. The Prevalence of Poverty in Communities Poverty USA, an organization dedicated to helping educate people … Continue reading Poverty and Addiction: How Each One Affects the Other

Cumberland Heights

It’s not uncommon to feel like your life, experiences and feelings won’t make a difference when it comes to someone else’s life. The reality, however, is that other people could truly benefit from your story – because what you have to offer, the insights that you’ve gained and the way you can connect with other people is unparalleled to anyone else. Researchers from the Veterans Health Association note that sharing your personal story can yield many benefits, such as: Conveying hope for people who may be going through similar struggles Opening an opportunity for a deeper connection with other people, through vulnerability and honesty Demonstrating a person’s capabilities and how far they’ve come in life Modeling effective coping techniques and self-help strategies for those who need it Describing personal wellness practices and … Continue reading Why Your Recovery Story Is Incredibly Important

Liz Stanislawski

If the binge drinking trend continues on college campuses this school year, more than 1,800 students will die from alcohol-related accidents. These deadly incidents include mixing alcohol with other drugs, getting into a car with someone who has been drinking or falling from an apartment balcony. And now there is a new phenomenon experts are growing concerned with called “drunkorexia.” According to Healthline, a health-information media company, drunkorexia is a restriction of food, carbohydrates or calories prior to consuming alcohol. It’s more prevalent among college students who may skip a meal before going to the bar to offset the calories they are likely to consume by drinking. Drunkorexia is not a clinical diagnosis, but it shares traits with recognized eating disordered behaviors such as restriction, eating and purging. Dipali Rinker, an Assistant … Continue reading Drunkorexia, A Real Concern Especially Among College Students

Cumberland Heights

Even if we’ve been following through with our work and family responsibilities for years, addiction can set us back – making it challenging for us to continue doing what we used to know so well. Simple tasks like working, cooking and cleaning might suddenly become incredibly difficult as our brain has now been wired to seek out and use substances. The Brain and Addiction: What You Need to Know The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) notes that as the brain contains three-pounds of mass with grey and white matter, these areas of the brain are required to perform functions like driving a car, creating something artistically and more. Since the brain is made up of so many interconnected parts, addiction satiates the brain over time, which leads a person to think … Continue reading Your Ultimate Guide to Strengthening Life Skills in Recovery

A reality that nobody really talks about is the identity change that occurs when a person undergoes recovery from addiction. It’s a gradual process, but it happens – and for the better. As a person adopts a new social network and lifestyle, they begin to view themselves differently in comparison to who they used to spend their time with and what activities they used to engage in. Life begins to shift more towards a recovery/sobriety perspective, and this does change everything – but even if it’s a major change, it’s something that you should embrace, not fear. A Change in Identity Earlier this year, writer Seamus Kirst explained the agony that came with a shift in his identity from addiction to sober; he explained that several years ago, he knew that his … Continue reading Creating a New Identity Through Sobriety: A Process of Transformation

Liz Stanislawski

It’s getting to be that time of year. Parents are gearing up for their kids to head back to college, or maybe you’re even dropping them off at their freshman dorm for the first time. Cue the tears. You worry about them, of course. Will they get enough sleep? Will they be homesick? Will they be eating well? Have you also considered how they will spend their down time? We would be naive to think our kids won’t at least experiment with drugs and alcohol at some point during their college years. Have you talked with them about the dangers? Have they rolled their eyes and dismissed you as an old person who is out of touch and just doesn’t understand? Talking about substance abuse isn’t always pleasant, but it needs to … Continue reading Before They Head Off To College, Talk To Your Kids About Binge Drinking

From the outside looking in, it seems simple: If our loved ones are battling with substance abuse, why don’t they just seek help? It’s a clear line of cause and effect, and it appears to be a simple, linear path towards a solution for our friend or family member. What we often don’t realize, however, is that there is much more going on beneath the surface – and with so many factors at play, there are often odds that go against our loved ones seeking the help they need. The Frustration of Addiction One of the most devastating, frustrating experiences we may have with our loved ones is hearing that they’re going to seek help, only to discover several days (or weeks) later that they haven’t taken any steps towards positive change. … Continue reading Common Barriers to Seeking Treatment: What’s Holding Our Loved Ones Back

Cumberland Heights

When everything is going well – for example, when we’ve been participating in our 12-Step program, we’ve maintained our therapy appointments and we’re feeling like we’re making significant progress in recovery – it’s easy to look towards a Higher Power. Pair spirituality with bad days – in other words, moments when we’ve been feeling depressed, anxious, let down, infuriated, etc. – and it becomes a bit more difficult. Many people can affirm that recovery has its ups and downs, and we can’t always predict how we’re going to feel or what situations are going to arise from one day to the next. What we can rely on, however, is a Higher Power to get us through those bad days. A 2016 study published in the Journal of Religion and Health, found that … Continue reading Connecting With a Higher Power When You Feel Everything Has Failed

Everyone may have their own definition of what spirituality means to them, but there’s one thing that most people have in common: Spirituality brings about feelings of hope, love, connectedness and strength. Dr. Elizabeth Hartney, a psychologist, and professor, told Very Well Mind – a website that publishes information related to disorders, self-improvement and more – that spirituality can incorporate a lot of different things, depending on the person: Getting in touch with a person’s “moral compass” Learning to apply a person’s values to live the life they’ve always wanted Respecting oneself and others Gaining perspective on a variety of problems Recognizing that as human beings, we all have weaknesses Receiving and providing support to other people And more While some may question spirituality’s role in addiction recovery, the evidence is clear. … Continue reading The Role of Spirituality in Addiction Recovery: What You Need to Know

Cumberland Heights

When life seems to be going the way we planned for it to, it’s easier to smile, to laugh and to be grateful for what we have. When things go awry, however – that’s another story. We find it easier to curse at the wind – to get mad at all of the people, places and things that have brought us down and to focus on outside circumstances and hold them accountable for how we feel inside. Earlier this year, A Conscious Rethink, a website that publishes information related to mind, body, spirit, relationships and more, described 5 main reasons why we tend to blame things on others when life goes “wrong”: We’re trying to explain why something happened because we feel a need to know a “cause” for a particular situation. … Continue reading Trusting In a Higher Power When Everything Seems to Be Going Wrong

You’ve gone through the most challenging aspect of recovery – your formal treatment program – but now what? You may be packing up your bags, ready to go home, but if there’s one thing you should know, it’s that recovery doesn’t stop when you leave your treatment program. In fact, your journey towards greater healing and restoration has only begun – and now is the time to use everything you’ve learned in treatment towards real-life situations you will encounter from day-to-day. It was once stated, “As we lose ourselves in the service of others, we discover our own lives and our own happiness.” In many cases, connecting with other people can bring us a bountiful amount of joy and hope for the future – and even if it’s not always in person, … Continue reading Using Online Support to Boost Your Post-Treatment Recovery Journey

The opioid epidemic has sparked numerous discussions on how, why, and what consequences are deriving from substance abuse – whether it’s originally intended or not. Many people find that while they’re taking opioid medication for a health concern – chronic pain, for example – that it becomes more and more difficult to manage the medication as their body develops a dependency. In other circumstances, however, friends and family members are finding ways to obtain opioids as a “quick fix” without having to seek out a primary care physician for their concerns. Wilson Compton, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) explained for Kaiser Health News a few years ago that leftover medications are becoming an issue – and he wasn’t incorrect. The National Safety Council notes that every day, more … Continue reading Prescription Opioid Abuse and Sharing Between Relatives: A Crisis In Our Nation

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