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

Cumberland Heights

Relapse can be an incredibly scary component of recovery, yet it’s all too common. The first year of addiction recovery yields the highest relapse rates – and often because individuals are still trying to navigate their path to sobriety. The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) explained that relapse is, “…Triggered by exposure to rewarding substances and behaviors, by exposure to environmental cues to use, and by exposure to emotional stressors that trigger heightened activity in brain stress circuits.” If you’re anxious to pursue a path of sobriety but you’re nervous about relapse, it’s important to become aware of some of the relapse warning signs in addition to developing some useful relapse prevention tools in moments of crisis. Warning Signs of Relapse Relapse is all too often feared because it can occur … Continue reading Warning Signs of Relapse and Preventative Measures You Can Take

Substance abuse is a major concern to people of all ages in the United States; the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) published an article in 2017 explaining the various effects of parental addiction that also impacts children and other family members, such as: Failing to pay the bills Being unable to control substance use Violence in the home Missed responsibilities Parental neglect And more Parental substance abuse significantly affects children of all ages, with adult children also reporting significant effects years later from their parents’ substance use. Several studies have shown that children battle making friends, succeeding in school and maintaining healthy self-esteem when their parent struggles with substance use concerns. Last year, Very Well Mind, a website that publishes information related to a variety of mental health conditions, … Continue reading Parents Are Battling Addiction More Than Ever In the United States

When we’re battling addiction, it can feel as though we’ve lost sight of what truly matters in our lives. We become focused on seeking out substances, thereby missing the opportunity to grow in our personal and spiritual journey to wellness; in this downfall, we may lose aspects of ourselves that once meant so much to us – such as our health, relationships, career path, hobbies and more. Before we know it, we may find ourselves battling unhealthy emotions like guilt, isolation, anger and resentment – and if we continue spiraling down this path, we may go on to experience even more hardship and destruction in our lives. Recovery is incredibly difficult for this exact reason – with so much to overcome, we must push ourselves harder than ever before to find the … Continue reading Gratitude, Acceptance and Faith in Recovery: Becoming Stronger Every Day

Cumberland Heights

Recovery is much more than treating a substance use disorder (SUD) as it is finding one’s balance in mind, body and spirit. Many people attest to leading a happier, more fulfilling life once they’ve dedicated their life to sobriety and purpose – and the 12-Steps also aid in this type of journey as a person finds their way to healing. A few years ago, writer Johnny F. shared his experience with the 12-Step program and rebuilding his mind, body spirit connection. He explained: “…As my alcoholism progressed, my drinking increased and life became more and more unmanageable…Many speak of the spiritual and cognitive shift which is necessary for peace to exist in our world. Due to the good people of AA, the Steps are already known and well respected…where millions of lives … Continue reading Enhancing Mind, Body and Spiritual Connections Through 12-Step Programs

Your personal recovery journey is like a finger print. While many of them look and feel the same, unique experiences make our stories one of a kind. They can inspire, heal, create hope or even push someone to take that first step in their own journey. That’s what Cumberland Heights’ new podcast “Recovery Live” is all about. Liz Stanislawski, Marketing and Public Relations Manager and former WSMV journalist will be interviewing alumni, staff, family members, counselors – really anyone who has been touched by addiction. The podcast is co-produced by Jaime Gibbons, Alumni Relations & Volunteer Coordinator. She is the very first guest, talking about what 16 years of sobriety looks like. Cumberland Heights also welcomed Travis Meadows on the show. The successful singer/songwriter is known for penning hits for several country … Continue reading Cumberland Heights launches new podcast “Recovery Live”

Formalized treatment often provides the structure that a person needs to restore their mental, physical and spiritual wellbeing after the ups and downs of addiction – but another major part of recovery is social support, and this is often found through recovery-related activities. Individual and group therapy serve as safe spaces for learning and growth, but there’s another component of recovery that can provide a person with a number of contacts and an additional structure for healing: 12-Step programs. All About 12-Step Programs 12-Step programs, such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), were founded back in the mid-1930s as a mutual self-help group. Dr. Robert Holbrook Smith and Bill Wilson started the first 12-Step fellowship in Akron, Ohio, and since then, thousands of chapters and people have engaged in it. The 12-Step program is … Continue reading Participation in 12-Step Programs: Building a Support System

Cumberland Heights

PsychAlive, a website that publishes information related to mental health, relationships and more, explains that attachment styles refer to the particular ways that we relate to others. Our attachment style is formed when we’re very little – and as we get older, it develops and becomes the foundation of the relationships we hold over time. In addiction recovery, understanding your attachment style can provide you with a lot of insight for how you tend to navigate your relationships – and it’s something that you can strengthen and address healthily in treatment and beyond once you’re aware of your tendencies. There are 4 main attachment styles: secure, avoidant, anxious and fearful. “Secure” attachment style means that you grew up with a parent who addressed your needs accordingly – and with a healthy foundation … Continue reading What Attachment Style Means and What It Says About Your Mental Health

Cumberland Heights

For many people, addiction isn’t the only occurrence. Mental illness concerns, like depression and anxiety, often enter our lives years before we begin to recognize how they’re affecting us – and while it can feel overwhelming, recovery is often a great place to begin discovering tools to manage concerns like anxiety which can take such a heavy toll on our day to day lives. Even the simple act of entering treatment can be nerve wracking, as we don’t know what to expect; according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), anxiety is highly treatable – but only 36.9% actually seek treatment. Identifying Anxiety Anxiety may seem like a minor issue compared to other challenges you may be going through, but all too often, it serves as the “cherry on top” … Continue reading Managing Anxiety While in Recovery: What You Need to Know

Statistics report approximately 2.77 billion social media users around the world – and with the ease and accessibility of technology today, it’s not hard to become entrenched in applications like Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. The Pew Research Center explains that about 88% of young adults ages use social media – but even other age groups, such as those in the 30 to 49-year-old age range, report a total of 64% in use. It’s hard to get away from technology, even though it’s helped us in some instances. Certain apps can help those in addiction recovery track their substance use or keep notes of their mental health state throughout the week – but unfortunately, social media can perpetuate negative thoughts for those who aren’t careful. The National Eating Disorders Association covered several comments … Continue reading How Social Media Can Perpetuate Negative Body Image in Addiction Recovery

Cumberland Heights

Focusing on nutrition is an absolute necessity in order to ensure our bodies are functioning properly. When we eat right, we’re less likely to struggle with symptoms of mental illness, and we tend to have enough energy to work through whatever challenges come our way. There are so many nutritious foods that we tend to neglect when addiction is active – and stress, depression, anxiety and more can cause us to crave everything we don’t need. A few years ago, Alyssa Salz, MD, RD, LD, told Today’s Dietitian that both nutrition and hydration are necessary for the healing process of addiction recovery; she stated: “Just as patients with diabetes or heart disease receive nutrition education to manage their diseases, patients dealing with substance abuse should have nutrition education that addresses their specific … Continue reading 5 Types of Food That Will Nourish Your Mind, Body and Spirit

Liz Stanislawski

Let’s face it. Sometimes a club soda with lime just doesn’t cut it in the summer months when you crave something refreshing and fun. Here are 5 sober summer sippers you won’t be able to get enough of. Strawberry Orange Mango Kombucha Summer Sipper Ingredients: • 2 16- ounce bottles Original Kombucha unflavored • 2 cups 100% orange-mango juice • 1 ripe mango peeled, pitted, and chopped • 2 cups fresh strawberries chopped Instructions: 1. Add all ingredients to a large pitcher and stir. Serve over ice and enjoy! Blueberry Mint Summer Sipper Ingredients: For the blueberry simple syrup: • 1 cup blueberries • 1 cup sugar • 1 cup water For each drink: • 3 Tablespoons simple syrup • 8-10 mint leaves + sprig for garnish • 1/2 lime + slices … Continue reading Sober Summer Sippers

Cumberland Heights

Many people who’ve battled addiction feel as though they’re the only ones who’ve had the challenges they’ve gone through – and sometimes it can feel lonely. In fact, most of us tend to have this perspective because we already feel so left out from all the happiness and glamour that’s portrayed in music videos and on social media – we think to ourselves, “How can anyone else possibly know what I’m going through?” Even when we don’t realize it, it’s this type of thinking that perpetuates further isolation, when truly we all go through pain. 12-Step programs are an excellent part of recovery, a way to bring people together and remind everyone that they’re not alone – and if you get a moment to hear someone else’s stories, you may realize just … Continue reading The Importance of Sharing Your Recovery Story: 12-Step Program Motivation

With all of the societal pressures placed on men to be strong and unphased, it’s become increasingly difficult for men to work through challenging inner experiences that truly need to be dealt with in healthy ways. In addition to this, men often feel they need to “stiff their upper lip” in an effort to keep up strong male appearances – even if this means hiding some of that inner pain and pushing through in unhealthy, dangerous ways. A publication by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) noted that men experience behavioral, social and situational issues within treatment; in many instances, men with particular characteristics (such as anger) will have a challenging time admitting mistakes or working through weaknesses in front of others or even with a therapist one-on-one. Other … Continue reading Common Struggles That Men Have in Addiction Recovery

Last year, a public announcement was made at the Milken Institute Future of Health Summit; it was emphasized that while the opioid addiction epidemic took so many lives and harmed so many people, the United States is making a comeback – but it will take some time to get back on track. Numbers are decreasing in opioid abuse, and thankfully those in recovery are beginning to pursue more holistic modes of treatment, such as yoga, meditation, exercise, nutrition management and other safe alternatives. The reality is that the opioid epidemic isn’t quite over – but with government officials, organizations and communities working together, we’re bringing down some of the painful effects this epidemic caused. Last year, Tonic – a division of Vice Magazine, which publishes information related to sobriety, recovery, disorders and … Continue reading The Opioid Epidemic Isn’t Over, But We’re Making Progress

Books have inspired action for so many years – the art of storytelling is a creative pursuit that can give us the opportunity to live in another person’s shoes yet learn valuable lessons along the way. Last year, writer Shaima Khan shared their personal view on reading via Thrive Global, a website that publishes information related to well-being, wisdom, wonder, purpose and more. They stated: “Every book has an intention when being written, whether it carries an intent to simply amuse a person through a heart-touching story including characters or just guidelines to a perfect life, some depict an excellent biography of the person or scientific facts of…diseases.” While in recovery, books can have a valuable stance in helping a person feel inspired, hopeful, grounded or simply educated. The Benefits of Reading: … Continue reading Reading in Recovery: Positive Influences and Inspirational Stories

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