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Thursday, December 27, 2018

A Resolution for Addiction Recovery

addiction recovery
Just about everyone sets New Year's resolutions they hope to keep. Some plan to make 2019 the year they start exercising or eating healthier. Others might strive to read more and watch less television. There are those too who intend to give up cigarettes finally.

The goals mentioned above are achievable, and some people will manage to adhere to the changes. However, there exist objectives that are exponentially more difficult to meet, at least on one's own. Addiction recovery falls into that category.

Millions of Americans would like nothing more than to overcome substance use disorder and embrace recovery. While such targets are possible to hit, success often rests on surrendering and asking for assistance. Addiction recovery is a life-changing experience, one that demands a person change just about everything. Such a monumental endeavor proves too much for self-will alone; after all, self-will run riot is what often brings people living in the grips of addiction to their knees. Fighting fire with fire is not an effective means of healing.

No, outside assistance is what's needed for achieving lasting addiction recovery, most typically. Use disorders are debilitating mental health conditions that men and women are unlikely to recover from if they refuse to reach out. Which is why it is vital to seek the aid of an addiction treatment center that provides a full continuum of care.

A Year to Recover

If you are living with addiction or with a co-occurring mental health disorder, The Haven understands how challenging it can be to surrender and accept that you require help. One of the terrible paradoxes of mental illness is that people affected have a way of convincing themselves they can manage on their own. They come to believe that seeking assistance is an admission of failure or evidence of weakness. The truth is something altogether different!

Men and women living with addiction are never stronger than when they come to terms with the fact that their illness will bring nothing but disaster. Those who are willing to open their heart and mind to a new way of living position themselves for realizing their most significant achievements.

Social stigma has a way of encouraging persons living with mental illness to hide their disease. Shame silences those who are most in need of a voice. Such people believe that asking for help will "out" their issues to the world; and, no one will ever look at them the same if the truth comes to the surface.

Fortunately, tens of millions of Americans have faced societal stigmas head on and lived to talk about it. Those very same people commit daily to making the next right move for a healthy mind, body, and spirit. They are living testaments to the potential of recovery and the gifts that come to those who chart a course toward progress.

Addiction Recovery With The Haven

If you are one of the millions of people struggling with addiction, we are hopeful that you will make recovery your resolution. We are confident that making the decision to seek help will be the most important choice you ever make; and, with the right assistance lasting recovery is within reach.

At The Haven, we work closely with each client to create a recovery and treatment experience that meets each person's unique needs. Together, we can help you rebuild your life and restore hope. Please contact us today to learn more about how 2019 can be the year you make lasting changes for the better.

The Haven at Pismo would like to wish everyone a safe and sober New Year's Eve and a productive New Year.

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Boosting Your Recovery in 2019

A new year is always a new opportunity to evaluate your daily habits and find ways to make yourself a little healthier and happier as you work hard to live a full and fulfilling sober life. If you haven’t already, consider adding these recovery boosting activities to your day-to-day in 2019.
  • Exercise: There’s a reason that exercise tops the list when it comes to staying healthy – it makes you feel great physically and mentally. Taking up yoga or going for a daily walk or jog can make sober living more bearable, too. Exercise releases feel-good endorphins in the brain and can boost your self-esteem, which can be a major benefit for people in recovery.
  • Journaling: Writing can be a great therapeutic tool that allows you to check in with your inner dialogue, express your thoughts and feelings, learn from any mistakes and set goals for a sober future. Make it a point this year to make journaling a daily activity – when you wake up or before bedtime.
  • Proper nutrition: Eating healthy can make you feel so much better during recovery. Proper nutrition can help heal any organ damage due to abusing drugs or alcohol. It can also help increase your energy. Since substance abuse alters the “reward system” in your brain, you may find yourself craving foods high in sugar, fat and carbs – but resist. Instead, do your best this year to fill your body with “real food,” including fruits and veggies, low-fat dairy, lean meats, fish and tons of water!
  • Positive thinking: If you’re still feeling guilty for your past or angry at your addiction, this is the year to try to change that. Certainly, this is easier said than done, but keeping your mind from negative thoughts and feelings can be a great boon to your recovery. Your thoughts have the ability to impact your behavior and how you experience the world. Making a habit of seeing the positive side of situations can help reduce your stress levels and make you happier and more at ease during the recovery process.
Wishing you a safe, sober, healthy and happy 2019!

Start Your Sober Life at The Haven
If you are starting the New Year with a resolution to begin life without addiction, we can help you progress along your journey. To learn about our addiction treatment programs and services, call us today: 805-202-3440.

Thursday, December 20, 2018

Addiction Recovery Tips for Christmas

addiction recovery
With Christmas less than one week away, now is the perfect time to fine-tune a plan for keeping your addiction recovery strong. Holidays can bring a host of unwelcome emotions that must be dealt with in healthy ways to avoid unfortunate events. Those who discount prioritizing sobriety during the holidays are at significant risk of relapse.

The good news is that there are plenty of examples at one’s disposal for managing holiday difficulties. Each person in your support network has various lengths of recovery time, which means some people have made it to the other side of many holidays without drugs and alcohol. Such individuals can help by giving you tips for maintaining sobriety during Christmas. Relying on the wisdom of your peers can be of immeasurable help on the 25th.

Below you will find some guidance for keeping yourself on the right path during any major holiday. If something doesn’t apply to you, then just focus on what refers to your program.


Sobriety Tips for The Holidays

Expectations: We all have expectations of ourselves and others, but we must be sure that they are realistic. It is easy to expect that Christmas will be a certain way, but it is vital that each of us goes with the flow. Holidays in sobriety are likely to be vastly different than previous iterations. Lowering your expectations will help prevent upset.

Personal Limitations: All happens during the holiday season. Christmas work parties and family gatherings should always be approached with caution. In early recovery, being around alcohol can be especially risky; if you are planning to attend an event, please discuss it first with someone in your support network, i.e., sponsor, recovery coach, or a friend in sobriety. If it’s decided that attending a gathering is not in your best interest, there is no shame in not showing up. If your presence is required, then see if one of your peers can accompany you.

Meetings, Meetings, and More Meetings: On every notable day of the year, e.g., Thanksgiving, Christmas, or New Year's Eve, meetings are held at the beginning of every hour. There are ample chances for attending meetings this Christmas; and, it is advisable to participate in several meetings on major holidays. If you have plans that may be stressful, going to a group before and after is an excellent practice. Men and women who have no scheduled engagements with family should make a point of spending time around your peers in recovery.

Being in the company of like-minded individuals will help you stay grounded and accountable.


A Safe and Sober Christmas

The Haven at Pismo would like to wish everyone in recovery a safe and sober holiday. We are confident that if you follow the direction of people with more time in the program, you will not jeopardize all your hard work. Utilize your tools for coping with difficult situations and your sobriety will remain intact.

Please contact us if you run into a problem over the holiday and require assistance getting back on track.

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Cannabis Use Carries Significant Risk

cannabis use disorder
Many individuals perceive marijuana or cannabis as benign. Most people have never heard of a person overdosing or dying from smoking "weed." Unlike alcohol, nobody associates cannabis with life-threatening health conditions like liver disease. The fact that medical marijuana and recreational use laws are in place in many states helps a significant number of people justify their "pot" use.

A nationwide survey shows that 22.2 million people aged 12 and older said that they had used cannabis in the past month, according to Medical News Today. While many who partake in marijuana use, do so intermittently, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) reports that as many as 30% of marijuana users may have some degree of cannabis use disorder.

It is fair to say that society does not deem chronic marijuana use as particularly harmful. While hearing of a friend seeking addiction treatment for cannabis is rare, it happens all the time. Marijuana use disorder is a real mental health condition that often demands outside help to overcome. Like the heavy use of any mind-altering substance, cannabis users build up tolerance and encounter problems when trying to quit. Hardly the markers of a healthy pastime.

The Risks of Cannabis Use

Experts believe that adolescents are highly susceptible to experiencing negative consequences from use and they are at a heightened risk of developing a use disorder down the road. New studies presented at the annual Society for Neuroscience meeting, sheds some more light on marijuana's effect on developing brains. While the findings presented last month involved animal models, the results are important nonetheless. At the meeting in San Diego, researchers showed:
  • Exposure to cannabis at a young age led to faulty development of brain circuits for memory and learning;
  • enhanced activity in brain circuits that regulate the formation of habits; and,
  • physical alterations in the development of brain regions involved in self-control, making decisions, and planning.
Parents living in states like California should be wary of co-signing their teenager's cannabis use. The evidence is clear, marijuana disrupts and alters cognitive functions; those who start using early in life are at high risk of developing a use disorder.

Marijuana use can cause health and social problems. Those who are addicted to marijuana find that stopping is an impossible task without assistance. Withdrawal symptoms are also common for such people when they attempt to quit, including:
  • Anxiety
  • Decreased Appetite
  • Cravings
  • Insomnia
  • Restlessness


Cannabis Use Disorder Treatment

If you or a loved one is unable to stop using marijuana on their own, it is possible that cannabis use disorder is presenting. The Haven at Pismo can help you break the cycle of addiction and develop a plan for achieving long-term recovery. Please contact us today to learn more about our services. The Haven is the perfect place to renew to your best today.

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Ideas for Sober Holiday Fun

sober holiday fun
Tis the season for sober holiday fun! Here’s a little reminder of all of the festive, wholesome and sober ways you can enjoy the holiday season:
  • Have a cookie baking and decorating night. Ask some friends over for a night of baking. Have everyone bring their favorite cookie recipe and decorating supplies. You can even make it a friendly competition and offer a small gift for the winning chef.
  • Go see a show. Whether it’s a local production of “A Christmas Carol” or “The Nutcracker” or a holiday music concert, this is the perfect time of year to unwind and enjoy a holiday-inspired performance. Get in the spirit and lose yourself in the storyline for a few hours.
  • Make a date at the movies. Grab a sober friend and head to the movie theater. There are so many new movies released this time of year! Another option is to stay home, make some popcorn and rent some holiday classics like “It’s a Wonderful Life” or “White Christmas.”
  • Take a leisurely drive. Turn on some holiday music and drive around your neighbor to check out all of the fun and festive lights and decorations.
  • Get moving together. Bundle up and gather some friends for a game of flag football or a scenic hike. Or scout out some places (indoor or outdoor) to go ice skating.
  • Give back. The concept of giving back is an important part of recovery – and what better time of year to help out at local shelter or organize a food drive.
  • Plan a sober party. If attending parties where alcohol will be plentiful is too risky, why not plan your own party with sober friends and family? Keep costs down by making it a potluck. Put on some music, play games and have a white elephant gift exchange.
Sobriety Support Year-round
Aftercare plans are invaluable additions to your recovery toolbox. At The Haven at Pismo, our team of addiction specialists will help you to develop relapse strategies to help you maintain sobriety once returning home. Call today: 805-202-3440.

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Opioid Addiction Epidemic Fight Receives Funding

Opioid overdose deaths are on the rise and the average life expectancy in America is dropping. The dark findings, courtesy of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), are a troubling cause for concern. While many factors play a part in the life expectancy decline, overdose deaths and so-called “deaths of despair” in the form of suicide stand out most notably.

Over the last few years, public health agencies have brought stark data to the attention of Americans. Campaigns are underway to get people talking about what happens when mental illness lives in the dark and individuals do not acquire the assistance they desperately require. The consensus among agencies like the National Institutes of Health and the CDC is that stigma continues to prevent millions of men and women from seeking help. Experts believe that having honest discussions about mental diseases like addiction and depression can save lives.

While talking amongst each other is beneficial for stigma-busting, we cannot forget that even when people desire assistance, it is often a struggle to obtain. Several congressional bills have sought to increase access to addiction treatment, expand the availability of the life-saving drug naloxone, and make more significant investments into prescription drug monitoring systems. The above actions have had some promising results; but, we still have a long way to go, and funding shortfalls continue to impede efforts to end the American opioid addiction epidemic plaguing millions.


Funding the Fight to End the Nation’s Opioid Epidemic

“We are experiencing a national crisis: For the first time since World War I, life expectancy in the U.S. has declined over the past three years—and opioids are a big reason why,” said Michael R. Bloomberg, Bloomberg Philanthropies Founder and WHO Global Ambassador for Noncommunicable Diseases. “We cannot sit by and allow this alarming trend to continue—not when so many Americans are being killed in what should be the prime of their lives.”

Michael Bloomberg made the above statement just before his charity announced a $50 million donation to look into the catalysts of opioid addiction and support substance use prevention and treatment programs, PBS NewsHour reports. The funds will be directed to the ten states hardest hit by the scourge of opioid use over the next three years.

A Bloomberg Philanthropies press release reveals that Pennsylvania is at the top of the list of states to receive financial aid. The organization has pledged at least $10 million to curb opioid deaths across The Keystone State. The findings of the three-year initiative will hopefully serve as a guide for others states to follow. Bloomberg’s charity is partnering with the CDC, The Pew Charitable Trusts, Johns Hopkins University, and Vital Strategies to find, “novel approaches and gaps in current treatment and prevention programs.”

“Communities across the country are taking innovative steps to address the opioid epidemic. Evaluating the efficacy of these approaches will help us determine which ones should be scaled up and implemented across the board,” said Ellen J. MacKenzie, Ph.D., MSc, Bloomberg Distinguished Professor and Dean of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.


Opioid Addiction Treatment

Opioid use disorder is a mental health condition devastating the lives of millions of Americans. Substance use disorder, left untreated, can result in premature death; it is vital that Americans living with addiction seek treatment immediately. Recovery is possible, and The Haven can aid you in breaking the cycle of self-defeating and self-destructive behaviors, and help you renew to your best today. Please contact us to learn more about our residential treatment center on the Central Coast of California.