Taking Small Steps Towards Recovery

Taking Small Steps Towards Recovery

The recovery process can feel overwhelming, daunting, even terrifying at times. We’re being asked to push ourselves to confront painful emotions that have been blocked for years. We’re dealing with issues that have been buried within us, that take incredible strength to face. When we feel too overwhelmed and burdened by our recovery program, we’re less likely to be able to keep up with it. The stress can overtake us, and we can find ourselves relapsing or giving up on our goals altogether. One helpful solution for this very common problem is to break down our recovery program into small steps and take things one small step at a time, one day at a time.

When something about our program feels too daunting, let’s see how we can break it down into smaller steps that are easier to handle and navigate. For example, the idea of starting treatment can be so scary that we continuously put it off. Our procrastination is just a byproduct of our fear. To help ease our fears and break the treatment process down into smaller steps, we can start by researching treatment centers, getting tours of their facilities, speaking with their staff and alumnae, and reading testimonials about people’s personal experiences being in treatment. Chances are, when we look at things this way, they start to feel less scary and impossible to manage.

Small steps we can start to take are asking a family member or friend for help finding a therapist and making a list of support groups to attend. We can develop a gratitude practice where we list the things we feel grateful for every day, to help us with our feelings of sadness, hopelessness and anxiety. We can start to get regular exercise to help us naturally lift our mood and combat depression. We can commit to seeing our therapist or going to a support group once a week. We can ask for help in connecting with a sponsor and then plan to communicate with our sponsor on a regular basis.

Taking small steps helps us to feel like a very large and complicated process is actually more approachable and manageable. We can start to feel like we’re capable of doing the work, and this self-belief can make all the difference in our recovery. When we feel defeated, like we’re climbing an uphill battle we can’t win, we’re more likely to give up altogether. Breaking larger things down into smaller steps can give us back our hopefulness and ambition, which can give us the motivation we need to keep going.

We’re here to give you the support and understanding you need for a successful recovery. Call Enlightened Solutions today: (833) 801-LIVE.

Understanding Sex Addiction

Understanding Sex Addiction

One of the many conditions that can both accompany other addictions and function as an addiction on its own is sex addiction. Whereas we usually associate addiction with substances such as drugs and alcohol, there are many behaviors that can become similarly addictive and destructive in a person’s life. Gambling, gaming, spending, shoplifting and overeating are all examples. Sex addiction, often referred to as love and sex addiction, is when a person’s relationship with sex and romance has become unhealthy, obsessive, impulsive and compulsive. When we struggle with sex addiction, our natural impulses for love and sex are overtaken by a neediness, a desperation, a compulsive need to return to a feeling of being high. Our thoughts are dominated by our sexual relationships, and we find it hard to focus on anything else. Our lives can become totally consumed by our reckless and dangerous behaviors. Our health can be derailed by our sexual patterns.

Very often our addictions stem from the trauma we haven’t resolved within ourselves. Sex addiction is no different. Sometimes our traumatic experiences were sexual in nature, causing us to have a dysfunctional relationship with sex based on fear, mistrust, shame and sadness. Sometimes our trauma can be totally unrelated, but our unresolved pain manifests in a sexual way. For example, the abandonment we felt at the loss of a loved one can cause us to compulsively try to relieve that pain through having sex.

With sex addiction, we often confuse sex for love and vice versa. In a healthy relationship, sex can be a mutual expression of our love and a reflection of it. In unhealthy relationships based on addiction, we have a hard time processing or clarifying our thoughts and feelings, including our definitions of love, respect and trust. We don’t know how to define, let alone embody, a healthy partnership. Often what results is a lot of confusion and turmoil. We’re filled with neediness and longing. Our relationships are based on codependence. We form attachments rather than unions. We feel as though there is a void within us that we try to fill through being loved, needed and wanted by another person. We can become just as addicted to the euphoric feelings of love as we are to the physical act of sex, and both can become the driving forces behind our behavior.

Sex addiction is one of the many co-occurring conditions we treat at Enlightened Solutions. You’re not alone. There is help available to you. Call us today: (833) 801-LIVE.

Treating Co-Occurring Conditions

Treating Co-Occurring Conditions

Addiction is all-encompassing and touches every area of our lives, from our work and our interests to the health of our relationships and our ability to feel at peace. Addiction doesn’t function in a vacuum; it impacts and is affected by all of the other issues in our lives. Very often when we’re living with addiction, we’re also struggling with other deeply rooted mental, emotional and physical issues. When our conditions occur at the same time, they’re referred to as co-occurring conditions. To heal from one, we must work to heal from all of them. The underlying issues behind our addictions are often contributing factors to our other illnesses, and vice versa.

Healing ourselves from addiction is not as simple and straightforward as abstaining from our addictive substance or behavior. When we don’t work to heal from all of the issues causing our addiction, our recovery isn’t as profound or as thorough as it needs to be in order to really prevent us from relapsing. Many of us living with addiction are also coping with depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues. Just as many of us haven’t sought out help for our addictions, we also haven’t gotten help for these very pervasive and destructive mental illnesses. Our ability to cope with daily life is often impaired. We struggle to function in our regular lives. Our health declines. Our relationships suffer. Our ability to care for ourselves falters. When we are deeply depressed, we often retreat inwards and isolate ourselves, making us even less likely to reach out for the help we so desperately need. Many of us struggle with some form of social anxiety, where our fears of people and social situations keep us from interacting with other people or asking for help when we need it. Our depression can cause us to feel so hopeless that we give up on ourselves. We don’t see any point in getting help. We’ve lost faith that we can recover. We’ve lost all belief in ourselves.

Successfully recovering from our addictions means treating our co-occurring conditions with as much care and attention as we place on our sobriety. What trauma do we have yet to heal from? What fears are still unaddressed that are driving our behaviors? Asking ourselves these important questions is part of the healing process. Many of us are afraid to venture this deep into our emotional problems, because it’s very scary terrain. Our recovery depends on our courage and our willingness to face these very difficult issues. We can’t grow to heal and love ourselves without doing so.

The programs at Enlightened Solutions treat co-occurring conditions along with addiction, to help you achieve true recovery. Call us today: (833) 801-LIVE.

substance abuse addiction treatment new jersey

Types of Detox Treatment Methods

Medically Assisted Detox

Medically assisted detox receives a lot of attention and controversy. Most medically assisted detox treatments involve the use of drug replacement therapy or drug substitution therapy. Famous name drugs like methadone or suboxone are prescribed to help someone slowly ween off of drugs like heroin, meth, and cocaine. Methadone and suboxone contain small traces of opioid, or morphine. Instead of enduring the unrelenting symptoms of withdrawal, someone can taper down through the process. Detox is the highest risk period of relapse. Medically assisted detox helps ensure against relapse.

However, that trace of morphine can be abused and become depended upon. Some people stay on substitution drug therapy treatments for years on end. While some practitioners see that as a success if the person does not turn back to illicit substances, others see that as not being true abstinence from being dependent upon a mind altering substance.

Naturally Assisted Detox

Naturally assisted detox is a relatively new treatment method for detox. With great sucess, NAD also reduces the symptoms of withdrawal, similar to the way medically assisted detox does. However, NAD relies on the intravenous administration of naturally occurring amino acids, vitamins, and minerals to replenish the body’s natural immune system, rather than morphine. Not only does NAD reduce symptoms of withdrawal, but it reduces the detox time period.

Cold Turkey

Putting an abrupt halt to the abuse of addictive substances can cause a range of health complications, which can include death. Detox, though it depends on how long drugs were abused and how severely they were abused, can be dangerous. When the body is detoxing, the brain is going through all the desperate measures it can think of to make the experience as awful as possible. One the one hand, the brain is in chaos- it doesn’t know how to function without the presence of drugs and alcohol anymore. Simultaneously, it wants to cause as much discomfort as possible through intense cravings and withdrawal symptoms so that it might make using sound convincing.

Quitting cold turkey and doing an at home detox is possible with some preparation. Having plenty of fluids, regularly taking temperature, and being monitored is important. Detox can cause seizure, heart attack, stroke, and passing out.

Enlightened Solutions proudly works with nearby detox treatment centers for patients looking to start treatment, but are in need of detox first. We offer treatment programs for men and women seeking recovery from their relationship with addiction. For more information call 833-801-5483.