Tag Archives: Addiction Triggers

Tag Archives: Addiction Triggers


Suppressing emotions can lead to unhealthy coping mechanisms that trigger addiction.

Unfortunately, our society tends to favor denial and suppression over expression and healing. It’s painful to talk about the past, the trauma, the hurt – and so for many Americans, the outcome results in pushing down the pain in an attempt to “move on” with our lives. Brian G. Lengfelder, an expert in psychology, stated in a presentation titled, “Clinical Education and Interventions for Defense Structures..” explained that defense mechanisms – such as denial and suppression – are a way for us to protect ourselves from feeling emotionally unstable. While this may help us in brief periods when we could act out or hurt someone, however, they’re not healthy coping mechanisms for long-term healing.

A previous study conducted by researchers from the University of California, San Francisco explained that some people are better at coping in healthier ways than others – and this could be due to a variety of factors, such as:

  • Genetics (such as if a person is pre-dispositioned to depression, anger, anxiety, etc.)
  • The way a person was raised and what they grew up seeing in their environment
  • Patterns developed from being friends with people who promote specific coping mechanisms
  • Major life events that have shaped the way a person deals with stressful events (such as trauma, an accident, the loss of a loved one, etc.)
  • And more

Denial and suppression are avoidance tactics that prevent a person from working through the pain they’re feeling; if those painful issues are never addressed, the underlying emotions will seep out in other ways – such as through substance abuse, aggression towards others, self-harm, depression, etc. If you’ve been drinking or using drugs to avoid facing the pain you’ve been feeling, it’s time to seek help.

Cumberland Heights has a team of healthcare professionals who are ready to help you work through what’s been holding you back – so that you can lead a happier, healthier life.

Cumberland Heights is a nonprofit alcohol and drug addiction treatment center located on the banks of the Cumberland River in Nashville, Tennessee. On a sprawling 177-acre campus, we are made up of two 12-Step immersion campuses, 12 outpatient recovery centers and 4 sober living homes. We believe that each person has a unique story to tell – and that’s why we always put the patient first. For more information, call 1-800-646-9998 today.

Will Valentine’s Day Trigger those in recovery?With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, it’s common to start hearing talk about love, relationships, romance and more. American society has coined Valentine’s Day as the official “romance” holiday, and it’s often the day where couples are celebrated; those in recovery aren’t always going to have a significant other, however, and this can be triggering especially if they begin to feel lonely. If this sounds like you this holiday season, don’t be worried. You’re not alone – and to be completely frank, Valentine’s Day is just another day.

The expectations that we hold for ourselves and others around Valentine’s Day truly set us up to pity ourselves. The depictions of a passionate, happy couple on commercials, movies and mentioned in songs often give us the illusion that if we have anything less than this, we’re not living life “right”. According to the United States Census Bureau, however, in 2017, 110.6 million Americans were single; and even those who were dating someone likely didn’t celebrate, because Valentine’s Day is being viewed more and more as a commercialized holiday.

If you’re looking for love this holiday season, start searching within yourself. As cliché as it sounds, we find ourselves happiest and most grounded when we’re at peace with ourselves – and that means getting to know who you are and forming a loving, respectful relationship with yourself. In 2014, Elite Daily talked about some truly inspirational ways to practice self-love:

  • Stop comparing yourself to others
  • Exercise regularly, get good sleep and practice healthy eating habits
  • Develop passions and hobbies
  • Spend time in nature
  • Read a book or make some artwork to express yourself
  • Forgive yourself for the people you’ve hurt

Valentine’s Day could be triggering, but it doesn’t have to be if you don’t let it. Choose to view the day as any other day – because it is. Wake up in the morning, make yourself a healthy breakfast, go for a walk if you’d like and fill your day with activities that enrich your life. Embrace your recovery by strengthening your relationship with yourself, because that’s truly what matters.

Cumberland Heights is a nonprofit alcohol and drug-addiction treatment center located on the banks of the Cumberland river in Nashville, Tennessee. On a sprawling 177-acre campus, we are made up of 2 12-Step immersion campuses, 12 outpatient recovery centers and 4 sober living homes. We believe that each person has a unique story to tell – and that’s why we always put the patient first.


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