Sleep and Addiction: Is Sleeping Too Much Okay?

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Anyone who has ever gone through an addiction to drugs or alcohol, or anyone who has ever watched a loved one struggle with one, knows firsthand just how difficult that journey to sobriety can be. An addiction, or substance use disorder, can wreak havoc on all areas of a person’s life. It can cause financial hardship, deterioration in health, loss of one’s job, homelessness, death, etc. Addiction can also have a devastating effect on a person’s sleep. Some people end up sleeping too much, which can result in other problems for your ultimate recovery from your addiction.

Addiction is often defined as “a brain disease brought on by chronic drug use that interferes with and makes changes to brain circuitry and chemistry, and these changes lead to compulsive drug using behaviors.” These changes in the brain are also what lead to both long-term and short-term sleep difficulties. The connection between drug use and sleep often goes both ways; substance abuse can hinder a person’s ability to sleep, and subsequently, difficulty with one’s sleep can also lead to an addiction or substance abuse problem as people turn to them in order to help them fall asleep.

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Sometimes, withdrawal symptoms from an addiction can cause problems with your sleep schedule, which can result in over-sleeping.

Unfortunately, once someone achieves sobriety, this problem doesn’t just go away. During the first week of sobriety, most people experience some level of withdrawal symptoms, some more severe than others. While the withdrawal symptoms that are experienced can differ depending on things like that type of drugs that were used, the amount of drugs that were used, and how long the person has been using those drugs or alcohol, problems with sleep remain the most common withdrawal symptom regardless of what substances were being used.

Tips for Getting Good Sleep in Sobriety

If you are like millions of other Americans who are new to recovery, then here are a few tips to help you get restful sleep while still maintaining your sobriety.

  • Stick to a Schedule- If you used drugs or alcohol shortly before bed, then it can be even more difficult to fall asleep once you get sober as your brain is no longer sure when it is time to go to bed. Creating a new, and healthy, sleep schedule is essential to getting good sleep while sober. Going to bed at the same time every night will help let your brain know when it is time to go to sleep.
  • Have a Nightly Routine- While this may be difficult for those who work odd hours or those who don’t have a set schedule, doing the same thing each and every night before you go to bed will help ensure you fall asleep faster. Try doing a light exercise 30 minutes before you go to sleep, or read your favorite book for an hour. This will also help train your brain when it is time to go to sleep.
  • Eliminate Screen Time- Research has shown that electronic devices, such as computers, phones, or TVs, can have a negative impact on the quality of one’s sleep. Cutting back on the amount of screen time you have, at least one hour before bed, can greatly reduce the chance of disrupting the quality of sleep.
  • Create a Space for Sleeping- Limit the amount of extracurricular activities you do while in bed, such as checking your phone, watching TV, or stressful conversations with your partner. This will help train your brain that the bed is where you sleep, not for everything else.

These are just a few tips you can implement to help increase the quality of your sleep, especially early on in recovery.

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Getting a good night’s sleep is essential to help you maintain sobriety, early in your recovery from an addiction.

Effects of Oversleeping

While sleep is essential early on recovery, there is still a chance that you could be sleeping too much. There is a difference between getting the right amount of sleep needed to recover and simply just getting too much sleep to begin with. It may sound absurd at first because whoever thought you could get too much sleep, but it is possible. The amount of sleep needed can vary depending on the individual, but most experts agree that anything above 10 hours for an adult is considered to be too much.

Oversleeping can be a sign of many underlying issues, such as depression and heart disease. The effects of oversleeping are much like the effects of not getting enough sleep to begin with. Getting enough sleep especially while undergoing withdrawal from drugs or alcohol is essential as the brain and body need this time to repair itself. However, a person can sleep too much. Here are a few side effects associated with getting too much sleep;

  • Higher risk of obesity
  • Higher risk of diabetes
  • Higher risk of heart disease
  • Depression
  • Increased pain
  • Impaired fertility
  • Cognitive impairment
  • Depression
  • Higher risk of overall mortality (death)
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Sleeping too much can become a problem in addiction recovery.

The importance of a healthy sleeping schedule in addiction recovery

Just like with anything in life, having a proper sleep schedule requires a good amount of balance. While it is important to get enough sleep to ensure a successful sobriety, it is also important to remember that there is such a thing as too much. We know that this can be a struggle for many Americans, as nearly 70 million people in the United States all suffer from a sleep disorder of some kind. There has long been a connection between sleep problems and substance abuse disorders, that is because many drugs and alcohol disrupt that natural circuit in the brain. Not only that, but there is also a link between poor sleep and the rate of relapse. For those in recovery, and anyone else who might be curious, we hope that this information was useful to you!

If you, or a loved one, are new to recovery and are having a difficult time with getting the right amount of sleep, then please reach out to an addiction specialist today. There is no shame in asking for help, especially when you need it! We know what a huge struggle trying to get enough sleep can be, especially early in the road to recovery, that is why we are here and we are always ready to help! We wish you the best!

 

(877) 228-4679

 

Why Is Stopping Drugs So Hard?

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Addiction is a disease of the brain. Your brain is the control center of your body, affecting your thoughts, feelings, decisions and actions. Addiction to drugs or alcohol is hard because it changes the signals in your brain, which makes it difficult to feel okay without using the drugs. When you first take drugs you feel a high or a rush from the substance. But over time, the high is not as strong and you must take more and more of the drug to keep from feeling bad. This is what happens when you become addicted. Many people who are addicted want to quit and they think they can do it on their own.

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Why Do I Keep Relapsing? 5 Ways To Become Stronger

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If you find yourself asking this question, either for yourself, a family member, loved one, neighbor or coworker just understand that a relapse is a very normal part of recovery. If you have been through a successful addiction treatment program, experienced a period of sobriety and fell into a relapse, please know you are not alone. Relapses are not uncommon and it does not mean you are a failure. Hope is always an option and there are many resources that can help you. How you react to your situation after experiencing a relapse is critical in your overall road to recovery. In this crucial time, forgiveness is an important factor to express to yourself or your loved one. Learn to forgive yourself or your family member for the recent relapse into substance use.  This is a better, more productive attitude to have that in the long run will help you or your loved one keep striving to maintain their sobriety.

 

Treatment of chronic diseases involves changing deeply rooted behaviors, and relapse doesn’t mean treatment has failed.”–National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)

 

It is estimated that 40-60 percent of people who maintain sobriety through rehab, treatment and recovery will relapse into heavy use, while 70-90 percent will relapse and use again at least once. In the medical field, a relapse used to be treated as an uncommon thing but that has largely changed due to the advances in behavioral science and addiction therapy. Sadly, many addicts are stigmatized by society as hopeless drug fiends or treated with the perception that they are a bad person for their substance use. Many of us here in the addiction treatment industry are advocating a different perspective. With addiction being a curable disease, you could compare it to the relapse rates of people with other medical problems such as diabetes, high blood pressure or asthma. The rate of relapse into these common medical diseases is close to the same as for people with a substance abuse disorder. Treating this as a medical condition will help ease the stigma associated with drug and alcohol abuse.

 

As we have seen the overdose epidemic explode in the United States, it is important for us to begin treating this as a serious medical condition, not a criminal activity reserved only for the ‘bad people’ in society. As you are reading this now, most of us know someone dearly who has struggled with some form of substance abuse. While we look to help those closest to us, deep down inside we know there is still a good person underneath the surface of their drug or alcohol addiction.

 


It is estimated that nearly 72,000 people in the United States died from a drug overdose in 2017. That’s close to 200 people each and every day. – Centers for Disease Control (CDC)


 

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Finding the right coping mechanisms and staying the course in recovery is the key to overcoming an addiction.

Warning: Your Drug Tolerance Levels Will Change

It is extremely important to note here that many who relapse will overdose their first time because they think they can do as much of the drug as they had been doing before they went through detox and a period of sobriety. Simply put, your body cannot handle as large an amount of the drug, even though they had built up a tolerance over their period of substance abuse. Your tolerance has changed through recovery and you might not be able to handle the “usual dose” as you have in the past and immediately die. We cannot stress this enough, so please keep this in mind throughout your post-recovery stage as most people do not plan to have a relapse.

Ultimately, it is up to the individual in recovery to actively want to change things in their life to help them maintain their newfound sobriety. This is a difficult path to navigate and there are many things you can do to help you avoid the temptation to relapse into substance use.

 

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Tips on how to overcome a relapse and not give up on your addiction recovery

Specific Risks to Avoid During Your Process of Recovery:

 

  1. Avoid drug-related ‘triggers’: Many in recovery can be tempted to relapse if they are around old hangouts where they used to purchase or consume drugs or alcohol. Even the sight of drug paraphernalia or a drink can be too much to handle for some. Also known as drug-related cues, these thoughts can come from a variety of places, depending on your individual situation. Most treatment programs will help you identify your potential triggers and help you formulate a plan to avoid them.
  2. Be extra cautious during the first 90 days: Most relapses occur during this crucial period of recovery. Your addiction doesn’t simply stop once your detox is completed. For many, addiction can shape your thoughts and behaviors for the rest of your life. The good news is the longer you stay sober, the easier it will be for you to avoid a return to your past substance abuse.
  3. Find help in a structured environment: Rates of relapse are much lower for people who participate in some sort of organized support group after their drug or alcohol detox. Relapse prevention or twelve-step programs like Alcoholic’s Anonymous (AA) or Narcotics Anonymous (NA) are great at helping people maintain their sobriety and offer personal help when you feel the urge to use again.
  4. Start creating healthy lifestyle habits: Studies have shown that even a mild amount of exercise can help reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms for recovering addicts. Eating healthy foods and thinking healthy thoughts are important to developing and rebuilding the self-confidence necessary to maintain your sobriety. Controlling your emotions and developing healthy coping mechanisms to deal with difficult situations can greatly increase your success in recovery and sober living.
  5. If you do relapse, don’t be afraid to ask for help (again): When a relapse occurs, know that there are a multitude of resources willing and able to help you break the cycle of your addiction. Sometimes treatment needs to be tried several times before the patient is fully recovered. Remember, relapse is completely normal and nothing to be ashamed about. Your family and loved ones will be happy you were honest and asked for help. Repeated attempts will work eventually and it will help you develop the desire for a healthy, sober lifestyle.

Recovery: Setting Goals for 2018

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With the New Year upon us, many people in recovery are undoubtedly considering what they’d like to accomplish in the upcoming 365 days. While “future tripping” is frowned upon in recovery, that doesn’t mean you can’t set goals. In fact, writing down a few things that you hope to alter, amend, or add to your life is healthy as long as one is realistic about what you wish to bring to fruition.

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Those who work a program of recovery learn right away that they can no longer have illusions of control. They realize that trying to play God did not have the intended outcome. We must keep in mind that letting go, and allowing one’s “higher power” to preside over the course of your life is a vital component of achieving lasting recovery. We only have the power to make choices and hopefully our decisions today are conducive to addiction recovery.

Your life today consists of doing the next right thing, which you accomplish by being open and honest with not only ourselves but with others too. It’s often said that most anything is possible in recovery, and individuals find that things are made possible through living by the principles of recovery. With that in mind, if there are things you would like to see changed or bring into your life, just keep attending meetings and following directions. Good things happen in the lives of people who stay the course.

Realistic Resolutions In Recovery

Just to be clear, working a program doesn’t mean that your higher power will grant everything you want. However, if you set goals for yourself and go about achieving them by honest means, there is an excellent chance you will see your dreams realized. While people who have been around for a while might set more ambitious goals than someone in early recovery, the vehicle used for progress in one’s life is the same.

If you are in early recovery, maybe you’d like to have cravings disappear. Even though everyone’s desire to use drugs or alcohol dissipates at different times, those who continue to do the work eventually find that their sporadic insatiable urges to use wane. Every time you resist the yearning to get high or drunk, it gets easier. At first, it’s a mental battle; down the road, however, you just brush the yen to use off your shoulder. People in their first year of recovery may have had to resist scores of times in 2017; if you keep doing what you’re doing, you might find it occurs less or not at all in the coming year. Please keep in mind that cravings are normal, not acting on them is progress, and that is a remarkable achievement. A realistic resolution in early recovery is endeavoring to not act on cravings and praying that they one day will be nonexistent.

Resolve to Help Newcomers

Individuals who’ve been around a bit longer might consider talking to more newcomers a goal for 2018. In the hustle of everyday life, we can lose sight of the importance of newcomers, and how vital it is to support their recovery. When we reach out to people who are fresh in recovery, we strengthen our recovery.

Everyone in the program was a newcomer at one point. People introduced themselves to you and made you feel less alone. They invited you to be a part of something life-changing and lent their support to you. Now that you have been around a bit, perhaps you might consider asking a newcomer if they need a ride home or to the meeting. In 2018, consider making it a point to introduce yourself to a newcomer at every meeting you attend. Such a selfless resolution will have a positive effect on your program; you never know what will come from relationships you foster in the program.

Whatever you decide via resolutions, please be realistic about them and emphasize the importance of having one’s motives in the right place. If you do, it will have a positive effect on your life. All of us at 10 Acre Ranch would like to wish you and your loved ones a safe and sober New Year’s Eve and a productive 2018 in recovery.

Addiction, Mental Illness and Cigarettes

Addiction, Mental Illness and Cigarettes photo of a man smoking in a dark room

Back in May you might remember an article we wrote about the dangers of smoking cigarettes in addiction recovery. Specifically having to do with the increased risk of relapse among smokers in recovery. In case you didn’t get a chance to read the post, we will give you a brief synopsis.

There is evidence suggesting that cigarette smokers in recovery are more likely to relapse on their “substance of choice.” Given that the goal of people in recovery is long-term abstinence, the findings are problematic, to say the least. If you regularly attend meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or Narcotics Anonymous (NA), you know that smoking is quite common. The last vestige of many people’s addictive past.

Those of you not in recovery, without a history of substance use disorder (SUD), may find that revelation odd. You might be thinking, ‘people are able to give up the heroin, but can’t kick the nicotine?’ Said people fought tooth and nail to be free of deadly substances, but are still holding on to cigarettes. Both addictive and deadly. Well, yes… It’s a common occurrence among people in recovery. Even with those who have undergone residential addiction treatment and are working a program of recovery day-in and day-out.

The Nature of Addiction

Regardless of which mind-altering substance, they are all addictive and extremely difficult stop using. Every case is different, but while every substance is hard to kick, some are more socially acceptable. Cigarettes are legal to use, and the toll they take on the human body is usually slower than “hard drugs.” People tend to have less of a sense of urgency when it comes to abstaining from tobacco. Even though it is killing you.

With that in mind, we would be remiss if we did not point out that smoking cessation is possible. Are you in recovery and still smoke, or started while in recovery (it happens more than you’d think)? If so, quitting can be extremely beneficial to both your physical and mental health. Finding healthier ways to cope with stress is always ideal. Considering that people in recovery are committed to living a healthy life and avoiding things that could lead to relapse.

Perhaps you would like another reason to prime your desire to quit. It turns out that the tobacco industry has long been targeting people with mental health disorders. If you are in recovery from addiction, that means you, too. They have also been targeting people in high stress environments, such as the military.

Praying Upon Addiction and Mental illness

MTV’s Music Awards are being held this coming Sunday. At which time viewers will see a series of advertisements about the tobacco industry’s nefarious ways of turning a profit. As smoking rates have continued to decline in recent decades, research suggests that “Big Tobacco” has targeted the vulnerable, The Washington Post reports. The ads point out that around 40 percent of cigarettes sold in the U.S. are to people with mental health issues. Such as depression, anxiety or substance-abuse problems. What’s more, 38 percent of people who smoke in the armed services started after enlisting. Please take a moment to watch the both informative and disturbing ads below.

“As the number of smokers drops, the industry is finding it harder and harder to find those replacement smokers,” said Robin Koval, chief executive of Truth Initiative. “So the industry is targeting people based on their challenges in life, on who they are. It’s shocking and appalling.”

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“The real truth is quitting actually helps their mental condition,” said Koval. “Those who are addicted and quit smoking when in recovery are less likely to relapse. Depression, anxiety, all those issues are helped when people try to quit.”

Addiction Treatment

At 10 Acre Ranch, we encourage all our clients to give up cigarettes while in treatment. We know how difficult it can be. Quitting all mind-altering substances at once can be a lot to handle. But, in the long run, it will be worth it for both health and recovery reasons. If you are struggling with drug and alcohol addiction, including nicotine, please contact us today. We can provide a number of tools to help you be free of tobacco, while learning how to live a life in recovery.

Addiction Recovery, Hope and Purpose

Friends funny dance on the beach under sunset sunlight

It’s nearly July already, and hopefully your summer is going smoothly. Perhaps you are finding yourself with some extra free time that will allow you to get outside a bit more than usual. One of the greatest parts about summers in Recovery is that you are afforded an opportunity to spend time with your higher power outdoors. Free from the constant noise of our technologically wired homes and apartments. Going to the beach or taking hikes with your addiction recovery peers is a wonderful opportunity to be grateful. I had one peer who was addicted to pornography from websites similar to https://www.nu-bay.com/ and he tells me getting away from technology has helped him in developing a healthier relationship between the two.

Even if you have not accrued years of clean and sober time, you are still able to appreciate the few gifts that recovery has afforded you. Just a couple months in the program can give you a new sense of purpose. Accompanied by the calm that comes from not having to worry about your next fix or drink. As you surely know, figuring out how you will afford your drug of choice or get away with it one more day is a great comfort.

In active addiction, we all spent an exorbitant amount of time and energy manipulating people and our surroundings. Robbing Peter to pay Paul, day in and day out. It could drive anyone to the brink of despair. An uphill battle that required all your attention and energy, just to wake up the next day and start the process all over. Perhaps over the course of your travels you came across Albert Camus’ “The Myth of Sysiphus?” Even if you haven’t, one need only read the first paragraph to spot the lot of the addict and alcoholic in Sysiphus:

“The gods had condemned Sisyphus to ceaselessly rolling a rock to the top of a mountain, whence the stone would fall back of its own weight. They had thought with some reason that there is no more dreadful punishment than futile and hopeless labor.”

Addiction Recovery is Hope and Purpose

While Camus’ short essay veers off into the theatre of philosophical absurdity, in the end Sisyphus finds himself happy with the task that the gods gave him. “The struggle itself toward the heights is enough to fill a man’s heart.”

The illustration of pushing the boulder is apt. In many ways, active addiction is a futile endeavor towards self-destruction. There aren’t any merits to slow suicide. A repetitive series of actions that strips you of your identity and casts you down to a living underworld. At some point, you no longer have the strength to push the boulder of addiction. One must either pivot towards recovery, or else. Conversely, addiction recovery is a series of repetitive movements that allows one to move, slowly, into the sunshine of the spirit. At times, you may feel like daily meetings and coffee sessions with your sponsor are both tedious and mundane. But, like the addiction boulder, the recovery boulder must be elevated each day. The difference is that your recovery is not futile, and your actions have purpose—saving your life.

The point, albeit in a somewhat roundabout way (no pun intended), is that there are ways to break up the monotony, and actually strengthen your relationship with your higher power. After you get to your daily meetings, take some time to embrace nature and all that is the natural world. Each day, try making a point to elevate your program to new heights, through prayer and meditation, perhaps. By doing so, the days where you find yourself struggling, may be fewer and farther between.

Independence Day Recovery

Next Tuesday is the 4th of July. A day that can be difficult for those who are working a program of recovery. Especially those of you who are new. Please make a point of having a plan in place. Avoid risky situations that might precipitate relapse. There will be meetings every hour of the day, and there isn’t a reason why you can’t go to several. There is a good chance that recovery BBQs will be going on, too. Try to attend, it is possible to have a lot fun in recovery. We are not a glum lot. Whether you have 24 hours or 24 years, we at 10 Acre Ranch wish everyone in recovery, a safe and sober Independence Day.

Cigarettes Affect Addiction Recovery

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In the world of addiction recovery, cigarettes are in many cases the last bastion of one’s disease. When people seek help for drugs and alcohol and successfully complete a substance use disorder treatment program—cigarettes often hold strong. While most treatment centers encourage clients to quit smoking while under their care and some don’t allow tobacco use of any kind, cigarettes are typically where clients put their foot down. Maybe using a vape, like the kind found at MagicVaporizers, would prove to be a valuable help.

Already anxious and depressed about saying bon voyage to drugs and alcohol, the thought of quitting smoking, too, is often more than one is willing to consider in early recovery. One says to themselves that tobacco did not make my life unmanageable, my wife didn’t leave me because of my addiction to Camels; so why do I need to give them up, and why should I do it at the same time I’m attempting to kick opioids or withdraw from alcohol?

The best counter to such musings is: for the sake of your health and your recovery. But, let’s start with the effect tobacco has on one’s health.

Cigarettes, In the End, Will Kill You

There is hardly a single adult in the United States who would find it surprising to learn that tobacco is deadly. Smokers are reminded of that fact on the side of every pack of cigarettes they purchase. Even though everyone is made aware of the risks, people still continue to smoke. No wonder why companies like Money Expert exist. Even “big tobacco” has admitted that they knew there was a correlation between premature death and their products, and chose to mislead the general public for profit. That being said, most smokers if asked the risks would likely respond by saying, “lung cancer.”

While it is true that years of smoking often results in the development of lung cancer, the reality is that the lists of cancers now associated with tobacco use is ever growing. There are about 36.5 million smokers in the United States, and just under half (16 million) of those individuals are living with some form of smoking related illness, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Cigarettes are currently the number one cause of preventable disease and death in America, and according to the National Cancer Institute smoking causes coronary heart disease, as well as cancer of the:

  • Esophagus
  • Larynx
  • Mouth
  • Throat
  • Kidney
  • Bladder
  • Liver
  • Pancreas
  • Stomach
  • Cervix
  • Colon
  • Rectum

What Are The Risks to My Recovery?

After seeing the lengthy list above, there is a chance that people in recovery will continue smoking regardless. The reasons for which are going to be subjective, but one of the major reasons is the fact that many addicts and alcoholics think that just because something is likely to happen—doesn’t mean that it will. When you have recovering heroin addicts who have survived an overdose, and alcoholics who have survived nearly fatal car wrecks, then it can give individuals a sense of invincibility, and thus they forget that they are eligible, too.

However, why someone does not heed the warnings about tobacco is not the focus of this article. We would like to discuss research which has shown that recovering addicts and alcoholics who continue to smoke whilst working a program of recovery are at a greater risk of relapse than their peers who have quit or didn’t smoke in the first place. If you are in recovery and still smoke, we implore you consider the study conducted at Boston University: School of Public Health which found that continuing or initiating cigarette use in recovery is associated with an increased likelihood of substance use relapse. The findings were published in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry.

People working a program of recovery often say that their program is the most important thing in their life. Saying things like, “to drink is to die” or “I’m sure I have another drink or drug in me, but I’m not sure I have another recovery.” A testament to the deadly nature of addiction, and thinking that your next relapse could be your last is reinforced by the fact that the likelihood of a deadly overdose in today’s world is high. So, if your recovery is, in fact, paramount to your continued existence. Rethinking your relationship with cigarettes is not just healthy, your future depends upon it.

You are probably aware, there are a number of smoking cessation aids; patches, gums and lozenges to name a few. There are some medications that have been proven to be effective for some smokers, such as Chantix and Wellbutrin. Using any one of those aids in conjunction with step-work and talking with your peers in the program, could allow you to break free from the chains of tobacco use. And possibly prevent a relapse.

Your Addiction Recovery On Memorial Day

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This is Memorial Day weekend, a time to remember all the brave American men and women who gave their lives for our great nation. And like most American holidays, it also a time when friends and family gather to celebrate during the three-day weekend. If you are working a program of recovery and plan on attending such gatherings, it is important that you talk about it with your sponsor beforehand and have plan in place if things get shaky.

You do not have to be in early recovery to experience cravings when you are around alcohol. Individuals with significant lengths of time, people who thought their program was strong, have convinced themselves that having just one or two beers at a barbeque was OK. And while such a slip may not lead to a full blown relapse that goes on for an extended period of time, such is often the case. Relapsing is easy, plugging oneself back into the program, having to identify as a newcomer once again is no small feat. But your life depends upon it.

With that in mind, let’s discuss a few things you can do to protect your recovery over the weekend.

Holidays Can Be Hard In Recovery

Whether it is Christmas, New Year’s Eve or Memorial Day—navigating any major holiday can be a real challenge and test in recovery. Even though we all want to believe that our program is secure enough to go anywhere and not pick up a drink or drug, such a belief can be a slippery slope. There is a reason why we talk about the various obstacles in our life on weekly basis with our peers in recovery. In many ways, it serves as a barometer, showing you if you are doing enough for your program. If you are not, your sponsors or others in your homegroup will enlighten you about what else you could be doing. They may ask you if you are volunteering? Are you extending your hand to newcomers? Are you spending enough time around people who have common goals? If not, some changes are likely in order.

If you answered “no” to any of those questions, it is a safe bet that you may not want to be in place or events typified by alcohol use. If you have committed yourself to attending a Memorial Day barbeque, you would be wise to ask another person in the program to go along with you. What’s more, your addiction does not take holidays. Make sure you get to at least one meeting, either before or after attending an event that involves alcohol. There is never any harm in going to two meetings in one day.

Have your phone charged and always by your side. Finding yourself on uncertain ground without a lifeline is precarious to say the least.

Relapse Back to Recovery

Sadly, there will be people in the program who do not take certain steps to protect their recovery this weekend. If that ends up being your story, please do not make the problem worse due to guilt or shame. That is the beauty of the program, your peers will welcome you back with open arms. Your seat at the table will always be there.

On another note, you may need to consider checking back into to treatment. Some relapses go on for a long time. If that is the case, please contact 10 Acre Ranch to for help.

Avoiding Common Relapse Triggers: Protecting Your Sobriety Post-Rehab

a man following the road to recovery by avoiding relapse triggers

Choosing a life of sobriety is a bold step towards a brand new life. It’s a chance to rediscover yourself, make a fresh start and recharge mentally, physically and spiritually. The courageous choice to end the cycle of unhealthy behaviors isn’t always easy, but the long-lasting rewards are certainly worth the effort.

That’s why it’s important for individuals who have made the courageous choice to seek help for an addiction to alcohol or drugs to understand the underlying environmental and social triggers that may increase the risk of relapse. If you’ve invested the time and energy to make profound strides in your recovery, it’s important to protect your newfound and well-earned sobriety.

By working with licensed addiction recovery specialists, you can identify the potential hazards that might derail your efforts and arm yourself with proven strategies for protecting your health.

3 Common Relapse Triggers

Your emotions. Feeling depressed, anxious or stressed can trigger unhealthy coping mechanisms. If you turned to drugs or alcohol in the past as a way of dealing with uncomfortable emotions, take the time to make a list of healthy strategies you can use instead.

Social situations. It’s common for individuals with addiction issues to associate certain social situations with substance abuse. Take the time to reflect on your past to identify where and when drugs and alcohol were within easy reach. If necessary, consider avoiding places like bars and instead choose to socialize with your friends in drug-free zones.

Happy occasions. You might not realize that attending a celebratory event like a birthday party, wedding or even a baseball game can make relapse more likely. If you’re having fun catching up with friends and family, it’s easy to become distracted from your goals and become tempted to revert to old habits.

By knowing the warning signs and triggers for a potential relapse, you can protect your sobriety and continue your journey to better health.

Getting the Addiction Treatment You Need

If you’re struggling with alcohol addiction or drug abuse, 10 Acre Ranch can help you break free. Our Southern California rehab for men offers personalized treatment, as well as extensive aftercare support to help you maintain your hard-won sobriety. By emphasizing exercise, nutritional balance, and recreational activities, we encourage clients to develop a healing lifestyle that sticks—during and after recovery.

Call (877) 228-4679 for program details or to discuss your customized recovery program with an addiction counselor.