Since addiction is a chronic disease, there is not a cure. However, treatment can help you fully recover. Substance abuse treatment utilizes evidence-based treatments, like stress management techniques, and holistic therapies, like meditation, to provide you with the support, guidance, and understanding you need to recover.
If you are battling alcoholism, addiction, or a substance abuse disorder, you’re far from alone. In 2017 alone, 20.7 million Americans met the criteria for a substance abuse disorder, while another 8.5 million had a co-occurring disorder. Addiction is also a deadly disease that doesn’t discriminate. That means regardless of your age, race, gender, or education, you can develop a substance abuse disorder.
What is Addiction?
Addiction isn’t an indication of a lack of willpower. Instead, addiction is a devastating disease that causes you to compulsively abuse drugs and alcohol despite wanting to stop and experiencing harmful consequences as a result of your use. Addiction also impairs your judgment, alters your brain chemistry, and causes personality changes. Abusing drugs and alcohol also places you at a higher risk of developing serious medical problems, like infections and organ damage.
When drugs and alcohol become the most important part of your life, you can neglect your responsibilities and obligations. Addiction can also cause serious financial problems, especially if your substance of choice is expensive. If you’re addicted to an illicit substance, like heroin or cocaine, you could also experience major legal problems.
Drugs and alcohol also change your brain chemistry and create significant neurotransmitter imbalances. Many substances, including benzodiazepines and opiates, can create powerful physical dependencies, which means you deal with severe withdrawal symptoms if you try to stop using.
Addiction can also cause:
- Damaged relationships
- Divorce and marital problems
- Employment instability and joblessness
- Housing problems
- Increased conflict with others
Since it takes time for your brain and body to heal from addiction, as your brain has to re-learn how to properly release neurotransmitters, it’s important to understand that recovery takes a lifetime commitment to sustain.
What are Stress Management Techniques?
During recovery, one of the most common triggers you’ll face is stress. Stress management techniques are important because they can help provide a healthy way to cope during recovery. Triggers are what cause you to experience cravings during recovery. Negative and overwhelming emotions, including stress, can undermine your sobriety.
Substance abuse treatment almost always includes education about how to utilize healthy stress management techniques. Since you likely relied on drugs and alcohol to cope with negative emotions during addiction, you likely have to learn how to practice stress management techniques.
Applying stress management techniques isn’t limited to cravings or triggers, either. Because stress is unavoidable, stress management techniques can improve your ability to cope with stress at work or handle conflict with other people.
The best thing about stress management techniques is that you can use them nearly anywhere. Many helpful stress management techniques are also great ways to improve your health and mood. Substance abuse treatment centers commonly use holistic therapies, like deep breathing, that can also serve as effective stress management techniques.
Working out and exercising are two other popular stress management techniques. Mindfulness is a skill that can also promote healthy stress management. Understanding your emotions and how they connect with your thoughts and behaviors, something that treatment centers utilize cognitive behavioral therapy and dialectical behavioral therapy for, can also improve your ability to handle stress.
Finding Treatment Today
Recovery is a lifelong journey, which is why treatment is essential to healing from a substance abuse disorder. Treatment centers can teach you how to cope with triggers and provide you with effective stress management techniques that make it easier to manage your sobriety. To find out more about our substance abuse treatment programs, call us today at 1.844.675.1628.