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Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Exercise & Endorphins: The Healthy Fight Against Addiction

benefits of exercise in addiction treatmentAddiction is a cruel, but tricky, mistress. Each time you drink or use, your substance of choice activates the neurological reward system and deceives your brain and body into thinking, “This feels great.” According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, some drugs “release 2 to 10 times the amount of dopamine that natural rewards such as eating and sex do.” In other words, it’s a powerful high you’re trying to overcome. Fortunately, exercise has been found to deliver a similar—but healthy—neurological response.

Benefits of Exercise for Addiction Treatment
While statistics show that people who exercise routinely are less likely to abuse drugs to begin with, we also know that exercise can improve addiction recovery success and help clients develop healthy patterns for their post-rehab life. Benefitting the mind, body, and spirit, appropriate levels of physical exertion have been known to:

• Ward off cravings & withdrawal symptoms
• Boost energy & improve sleep
• Reduce anxiety & depression
• Sharpen mental acuity
• Improve self-esteem & mood
• Promote weight management 
• Strengthen muscles & enhance endurance
• Reduce stress & tension

According to the Mayo Clinic, exercise is “meditation in motion.” When your body is moving, your blood is pumping, and natural levels of endorphins are flowing, you experience mental and psychological benefits, as well. During exercise, you can focus on your body and rediscover what it means to experience a clean-energy boost that doesn’t require harmful chemicals. As a bonus, fitness improves your self-worth and personal outlook and allows you to develop goals and discipline that will serve you well during all phases of addiction recovery.

What type of exercise is beneficial? Choose workouts that pique your interest: cycling, tennis, swimming, running, yoga, Tai Chi, Pilates, weight lifting, group exercise classes; anything goes. 

Avoid a New Addiction 
As healthy as cardiovascular fitness, weight training, and mind-body exercise can be during addiction rehabilitation, it’s important to approach them with moderation. Studies show that, in some cases, those with addictive tendencies may begin to replace drugs with compulsive exercise. The goal is not to substitute one addiction for another, but rather to develop a passion for exercise that renews your body and stimulates your mind.

If you fear you’ve become addicted to exercise as a replacement for drug or alcohol use, we can help. The Coast to Coast Recovery team is experienced in the treatment of addictive behavior, and our services are available to families and individuals struggling with the fallout of drug and alcohol abuse. Dial 800-210-8229 or fill out a confidential online request to learn about treatment options and request payment assistance.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Five Ways to Bi-pass “Revolving Door” Rehab

handle relapse without going back to rehabNo one enters a rehab program with the intention of having a relapse, but statistics show that, for 60% of those in recovery, it will probably occur during the first 90 days after re-entering “real life.” A relapse does not necessarily mean a return to addiction, though. Whether it is just a slip or a full-blown fall from sobriety depends on you and how well you have prepared to meet this challenge. 

Here are five ways to get back to recovery without needing another trip through rehab:

1. Rethink your relapse. The temptation is to look at it as a failure, but it may just be the best learning opportunity you have ever had. Did you make a conscious decision to use again, or was it a momentary lapse in judgment? Did you think a relapse was inevitable? Answering these questions honestly will tell you a lot about your commitment to sobriety.

2. Utilize your support network. Aftercare support is as important as rehab. Before stress and pressure build up, talk to someone about the challenges you are facing. Sharing your feelings with therapists and other sober colleagues will make you feel less alone and helpless.

3. Seek treatment if a sober life is too much to handle. Some rehab programs do not offer adequate treatment for clients who have mental and physical conditions that make life unbearable. If you suspect you need help for a co-occurring condition like depression or bi-polar disorder, seek out additional treatment before turning again to drugs or alcohol.

4. Review your triggers. What were your feelings when you decided to use again? Who were you with? Recognizing your triggers will help you avoid these situations in the future.

5. Empower yourself. Eat well, exercise, and develop new interests to occupy your free time. Practice meditation and gratitude to keep yourself centered. And be ready to develop new coping plans as you encounter new situations at work and in your personal life.

Coast to Coast Recovery Centers Can Help You Avoid Relapse 

Finding the right treatment center the first time is the best way to avoid chronic relapse after rehab. That’s where our approach is different. We empower you by offering treatment options that match your unique needs, and we give you time to ask questions and make an informed decision. There is no cost for treatment matching, and we’ll verify your insurance coverage, too. Call 800-210-8229 or fill out the confidential online request to find your options for the treatment and after-rehab support that will lead to your success in a new and sober life.

Monday, October 19, 2015

EMDR for Addiction Treatment

EMDR addiction treatmentEye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) is an advanced psychotherapy technique that therapists use as part of a cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) program. While EMDR is primarily applied to help patients overcome psychologically traumatic events, it also shows promise as a treatment for some psychosomatic disorders and certain personality disorders.

When an individual experiences psychological trauma, their brain struggles to come to terms with the traumatic event. In most cases, this event imprints itself on the brain, and because it cannot be properly integrated, the victim fixates on it and relives it again and again. This can be severely distressing, and in complex cases, it can disrupt the victim's ability to live a normal and healthy life. 

EMDR is believed to act on the brain centers involved with information processing, enabling trauma victims to face, process, and integrate the damaging event or events. The technique is believed to activate the same types of brain activity seen during REM sleep and dreaming, unlocking the innate ability to view events from an alternate point of view.

The prevailing clinical model positions EMDR as an eight-phase therapy program:

Phase 1—History and treatment planning: The therapist gathers information about the patient and the traumatic episode, and devises a treatment plan.
Phase 2—Preparation: The therapist introduces the patient to specific techniques that will be used during the therapy program.
Phase 3—Assessment: The therapist makes evidence-based decisions about which traumatic event(s) to address, and in what order.
Phase 4—Desensitization: The patient's responses to the traumatic event are catalogued and gradually diminished through targeted visualizations and eye movements.
Phase 5—Installation: The patient's traumatic memories are replaced by new, healthy alternative thought patterns.
Phase 6—Body scan: The patient is tested to see if he or she can to recall the traumatic event without adverse physiological reactions.
Phase 7—Closure: The therapist guides the patient through a final resolution and reintegration stage.
Phase 8—Reevaluation: The patient is tested to ensure he or she is experiencing lasting symptom relief.

Scientific research supports the effectiveness of EMDR therapies. The American Psychiatric Association officially endorses the technique, and three recent randomized studies found that between 84 and 100 percent of PTSD clients afflicted with a single psychological trauma were relieved of symptoms after an average of three sessions. Within a matter of weeks, these clients were able to achieve levels of progress that typically require months or even years of treatment using other techniques.

The therapy teams at our partner facilities have extensive experience with EMDR treatments, deploying the latest scientific practices supported by current literature to boost the rate of recovery after psychological trauma. While the path to healing takes time and effort, EMDR provides clients in recovery with a highly effective and proven approach that can help them achieve inner peace and harmony sooner than they may have expected. To learn more about our addiction recovery practices and options, please contact us at 1-800-210-8229.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Bipolar Disorder and Addiction: The Importance of Clinical Assessments

bipolar disorder and addictionCurrent medical research has uncovered such strong links between bipolar disorder and substance abuse that clinicians are advised to assess patients with bipolar symptoms for behavioral patterns that display evidence of comorbid drug or alcohol abuse. According to clinical literature, many people with bipolar disorder experience dramatic discomfort from the recurrent cycle of mania and depression, and they frequently turn to drugs or alcohol to self-medicate their condition. Sadly, self-medication often leads to substance abuse, a problem that further endangers the client’s mental and physical health.

Substance Abuse and the Bipolar Cycle

Some people with mental health challenges like bipolar disorder turn to drugs with sedating effects, such as alcohol, depressants, marijuana, and opiates. These substances seem to provide a temporary relief outlet, taking the proverbial edge off the mood swings associated with bipolar disorder. Alternatively, others with bipolar disorder use substances that create a sense of euphoric intensity, like cocaine, amphetamines, and other uppers. These drugs can hasten the reemergence of mania symptoms, making it virtually impossible for the patient to stabilize the underlying condition.

Addiction itself can mimic the cycle of mania and depression that defines bipolar disorder. Many times it may appear that the patient is suffering from BPD when, in fact, it is substance abuse habits that are creating the symptoms. To stop this pattern in its tracks, it is essential that those with these types of addiction symptoms be screened for bipolar disorder once they have entered an extended period of sobriety. An accurate clinical assessment is an essential first step towards recovery, and our team excels at delivering reliable, comprehensive diagnoses that allow Coast to Coast Recovery to create individually tailored recovery programs.

How We Help Clients Recover from Addiction & Bi-Polar Disorder 

Our partner facilities use an approach that combine scientifically proven best practices to help clients empower themselves to make a steady journey down the road to recovery. Using an integrated combination of clinical intervention and spiritual self-exploration, we help recovering individuals build the inner strength and self-confidence they need to face, defeat, and heal from substance abuse and bi-polar disorder.

If you or someone you care about is suffering from drug or alcohol addiction and bi-polar disorder, we can help guide you to physical and spiritual healing through helping you find the right treatment option and a sound clinical assessment. To learn more, please call 800-210-8229 or use our confidential contact form to connect with a recovery advisor. Peace, mercy, and forgiveness await you. Don’t struggle through another day alone.
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Our goal is to help you get it right the first time, so you or your loved one can achieve lasting sobriety. This is largely dependent on selecting the best match for you and your circumstances.

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While we specialize matching you with the right program, it is critical that you own your decision to get help. To ensure that this happens, we (1) present our recommendations, (2) give you the opportunity to ask questions and address concerns, and (3) give you time to weigh the options. Why? Because choosing a program that suits your lifestyle and personal values increases the chances that you’ll achieve sustained sobriety.

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Admissions into our centers can happen quickly - even on the same day. Many clients and families are concerned about navigating this process. Don’t worry, we will handle that for you.

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As your program comes to an end, Coast to Coast addiction professionals help you take the next step into aftercare and beyond. Stressful lifestyles, co-occurring conditions, and dysfunctional family situations act as relapse triggers, so it’s critical that you develop a detailed plan for life after rehab.

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