Comfort Eating in Recovery

Comfort Eating in Recovery

Beating an addiction and moving into recovery is no easy feat. In order to build a successful life a recovered addict has to change almost everything in their life. It is a really emotional time for the individual. And to add to the challenge, the individual will no longer be able to use d rugs and alcohol to comfort themselves. Even when the individual is years into their recovery they sometimes will have a hard time contending with their emotions. Life is and always will be filled with ups and downs and emotional highs and lows.  Unfortunately sometimes when people in recovery have difficult emotions, while it is good they won’t use drugs or drink, they eat instead. This is called comfort eating in recovery.

What is comfort eating in recovery?

Comfort eating is sometimes referred to as emotional eating or feeding your feelings. Comfort eating usually is a result of emotions not because of hunger. It is believe the main reason people overeat is due to comfort eating and it is also believed to be one of the main causes of obesity. Comfort eating is believed to originate in childhood when treats such as candy are used to deal with unpleasant or difficult events. People during childhood then learn the association between food and comfort so they continue this behavior long into their adulthood.

Comfort eating in recovery

Individuals who have dealt with addiction are at a particularly high risk of turning to comfort eating in order to deal with their emotions. The first few months and even years of sobriety can be like an emotional rollercoaster so the temptation or want to turn to food for comfort is really high. This individual can justify their comfort eating with the rationalization that they are better turning towards food for comfort rather than food. The problem with comfort eating in recovery is that it is not a harmless activity. Comfort eating in recovery can lead to many problems with their health as well as interfere with their ability to fully enjoy recovery. Comfort eating in recovery also can be a means to deny problems in their life and this is especially dangerous. Denying problems was a big part of why they used drugs and alcohol so this behavior can be especially foreshadowing and dangerous. Occasionally turning towards food for comfort is ok but doing it all the time in recovery can end up in disaster.

What are some other dangers of comfort eating in recovery?

  • Comfort eating in recovery can easily lead people to become overweight. Comfort eating often causes people to eat a lot more than their body needs.
  • Comfort eating in recovery can cause nutritional deficiencies. If a person isn’t eating a balanced diet they can end up with health problems
  • Comfort eating can damage the self-esteem by causing the individual to gain a lot of weight. A person who feels less good about themselves is in danger of comfort eating even more.

How to avoid comfort eating in recovery

  • Staying mindful while eating is important to not comfort eating in recovery. People who pay closer attention to what and why they eat are less likely to comfort eat.
  • Talking to other people instead of comfort eating in recovery can be especially helpful to deal with difficult emotions and pent up feelings.
  • Facing the root or why they eat for comfort. If it is something that is bothering them they will need to get past it to get past comfort eating in recovery.

 

If you need help with your addiction please call us at 800-507-7389.

Success Rate of Sober Living

Success Rate of Sober Living

The success rate of sober living is unknown but it is most definitely better than the success rate of someone who doesn’t attend any kind of sober living after treatment. Lack of a stable, alcohol and drug free place to live can be a serious and almost insurmountable obstacle for addicts and alcoholics. Destructive living arrangements can totally derail recovery for even the most highly motivated addicts and alcoholics.

Sober living is an alcohol and drug free living environment for individuals attempting to abstain from alcohol and drugs. Sober living is not licensed for funded by state or local governments and the residents themselves pay for the cost. The philosophy of recovery in a sober living house emphasizes 12-step group attendance and peer support.

So what are the success rates of sober living?

Research in one California study measured treatment outcomes over an eighteen month period from a sample of patients who were provided sober living as part of their outpatient treatment. Participants were male, with an average age of around 40 years old. A fourth of them were criminal justice referrals. A third of them was either homeless or lived in a shelter. Residents were dependent on cocaine, alcohol, marijuana, heroin and amphetamines. Participants were interviewed at intake and at 6, 12, and 18 months.

The study found that sober living clients experienced significant improvements when it came to stay sober and even days worked. Involvement in 12-step groups was the strongest predictor of reductions in alcohol and drug use. The outcomes did not vary by demographics such as age, race, and education. The study concluded that sober living should be considered as a part of outpatient treatment for clients who have access to limited financial resources or reside in destructive living environments. The reason being, success of the individuals who were in sober living and staying sober.

The success rates of sober living are much higher in comparison to someone who doesn’t attend sober living. And it seems like the success rates of sober living go up even more if the clients of sober living also attend a 12-step group. The longer amount of time spent at a sober living residence the better too. Someone who stays at a sober living home and attends a 12-step group for a long period of time usually has a much higher chance of success than someone who just goes back to the original living environment and does not attend a 12 step group.

I know this is especially true for myself and most of the people I know who have multiple years sober. Sober living really can get addicts and alcoholics who have been unstable for so long the ability to start off on a stable and sturdy foundation instead of going back into the same unsteadiness once again. The success rates of sober living aren’t exact but they are good. The risks of going back into an old environment or giving yourself a better chance at staying sober with a sober living environment seems like an easy choice to make.

 

If you need help with your addiction please call us at 800-507-7389.

How to Start a Halfway House

How to Start a Halfway House

 

What is a Halfway House?

Halfway Houses are transitional living places for those in recovery from drugs or alcohol. They are also called sober houses. Some people go to halfway houses from a treatment center, prison, or a homeless situation, while others go there to be in a sober and clean environment to begin the recovery process. Some residents are in halfway houses due to court orders.

Aspects of a Halfway House

Many halfway houses are run by people who themselves were at one time a halfway house resident. The houses accommodate either men or women. Most halfway houses require residents to pass breathalyzer and drug screening tests. Some houses have curfews.

Make sure the house is located so that your residents can easily get to AA and NA meetings. In recovery, we are self-supporting. Be certain that you are clear on what is expected from you and what you expect from your residents. Assign cleaning chores, including making their beds and keeping their rooms tidy.

Choose a house near public transportation for those of your residents who do not have their own transportation.

Why You Should Start a Halfway House

You should only open a halfway house if you are passionate about the cause. And, if you are passionate, it can be done with little or no money. There are various grants and loans available to get a house started. Learn from experience and check with someone who already has a house to see how to open one.

How to Start a Halfway House

Step 1: Acquire the licenses and permits needed to operate a halfway house in the community you select.

Step 2: Purchase or lease a property. Your financial circumstances may dictate this choice, but county, city, township and other lawmaking agencies frequently require property ownership before they are willing to sanction a halfway house in a residential neighborhood. Once you find one or more likely properties, have your top choices inspected by a certified building inspector to avoid “buyer’s remorse.”

Step 3: Renovate the property. Unless the home you buy was operated as a halfway house in the past, you’ll likely have to modify it to accommodate zoning laws that sanction the number of people you can house there, or any personal limits you’ve placed on resident capacity. Purchase insurance to cover the house and its contents, and add liability coverage to protect your personal assets from lawsuits. A regular homeowner’s policy isn’t adequate for a group home.

Step 4: Hire staff and create policies, rules and regulations. Having staff in place before the first resident arrives is a huge advantage, because experienced halfway house employees can help you write an operations manual and set rules, regulations and policies that will guide both clients and staff. Make sure you run background checks on everyone, from counselors to housekeeping employees.

Step 5: Set up the accounting aspects of your halfway house so it operates smoothly well into the future. Accurate records are important if you want your sponsors to continue making financial contributions, and it goes without saying that finding additional sponsors will be an ongoing activity.

Step 6: Implement programming. Residents released from rehab programs require an inordinate amount of structure in their lives so they can learn to become responsible members of both the halfway house and the outside world. Establish tight schedules that include mandated housekeeping chores, group counseling sessions, one-on-one therapy time, recreational activities, job searching and life skill building time. Plan social events, meetings and include alone time.

Remember: It is unlawful to discriminate in housing. The Supreme Court has ruled that recovering alcoholics and drug addicts are a protected class under the handicapped provisions of the Federal Fair Housing Act Amendments of 1988. If you seek a house in a good neighborhood, you’ll find it.

 

 

Sources:

http://www.sba.gov

http://halfwayhouse.com

http://smallbusiness.chron.com

http://soberhouse.net

 

 

 

 

If you need help with your addiction please call us at 800-507-7389.

How to fight emotional triggers in recovery

How to fight emotional triggers in recovery

Triggers are specific memories, behaviors, thoughts, emotions, and situations that jeopardize recovery. Triggers are signals you are entering a stage that brings you closer to a relapse. Triggers are the stimuli, the people, places, situations, emotional states, thoughts, etc. that can “trigger” an ingrained ritualistic response which in most cases is to get high. Learning to identify relapse triggers and especially the emotional intensity that they invoke can be an effective tool in how to fight emotional triggers in recovery.

If you really want to know how to fight emotional triggers in recovery then the best place you can start is by learning what they are. For instance, deep sadness or extreme excitement might be emotional states that trigger you. If you know those are your emotional triggers in recovery then you can begin to fight against them.

Once you know what your emotional triggers in recovery are you can then begin to set in a place a plan of action for yourself. A plan of action for fighting emotional triggers in recovery can consist of multiple different things. For instance say an emotional trigger in recovery for you is excitement. If you begin to feel that excitement and it makes you think about using you can have a plan that first consist of calling a sober support, second doing something to get your mind off of it. No matter what it is that you use to fight emotional triggers in recovery make sure that you are taking action. Change your state.

A good way to fight emotional triggers in recovery is to go for a run when you begin thinking about using. You could also choose to turn on some music and dance your heart out. You can go workout at the gym. You can go for a bike ride. You can meditate. You can read a book. You can really do whatever it is that works for you to fight emotional triggers in recovery as long as it’s something different than what you would normally do. A lot of the times when addicts and alcoholics feel emotionally triggered in recovery they don’t know why they are thinking about using and they have no idea what to do instead of go and get high. This can lead to relapse without the proper identification of what is going on and what to do when it happens.

This is why identifying what triggers you emotionally and then making a plan of action for yourself when emotional triggers pop up is the best way to fight emotional triggers in recovery. It is not easy to fight emotional triggers in recovery in fact addicts and alcoholics are hardwired to use in certain instances that’s why its good to have a plan in place before you are ever get triggered. Once you are able to implement your plan to fight emotional triggers in recovery multiple times it will get easier to ward off. If you make a habit of fighting your emotional triggers in recovery eventually it won’t be so difficult and then you may even find you aren’t triggered by the emotional states at all now.

 

 

If you need help with your addiction please call us at 800-507-7389.

Summer Sober Houses

Summer Sober Houses

Many times summer is filled with drinking, trips to beach houses and parties at night. For the alcoholic and addict in recovery it can be hard to find a summer vacation place that is safe and sober. Luckily, there are ways for addicts and alcoholics to party up during the summer in summer sober houses.

Summer sober houses are just like any other normal house except the people who stay in them don’t drink or do alcohol. Instead of having a cocktail hour in the evening they have a meeting, instead of spending their days sipping on fruity alcoholic beverages they go surfing or hiking and instead of getting sloppy drunk at the bar down the street-they go down to the beach and admire the moon. There is a lot life has to offer people who are in sobriety and summer sober houses are an addition to that.

Summer sober houses can be found all over the coast where any normal person would go on their summer vacation. Summer sober houses are just like rental houses except they are for the person who needs a safe place where there isn’t going to be much drinking around and they can be around people who are of the same state of mind as they are. It is really beneficial for addicts and alcoholics when they want to do things that normally involve drinking, to do those things with other people. And this means renting a beach house or summer home. Summer sober houses usually house the same amount of people as a normal rental summer home would except the residents have to go through kind of an interview process. It is not recommended that anyone with only days sober go and rent a summer sober house with their friends because the areas in beach towns still have a lot of temptation nearby but for those who have a little bit more clean time a summer sober house can be the ideal spot to enjoy the warmer months out of the year.

Of course the activities in a summer sober house are different than a normal one and they include everything from surfing, to hiking, to playing cards, to going out to eat, to paddle boarding, to tanning, to getting ice cream etc. Everything but getting intoxicated. In fact some people who stay in summer sober houses do go to the bar for a little bit of dancing but they always have other sober people around them that they go with-they never go alone.

Summer sober houses are the newest and latest thing for those people in recovery who are still looking to have a little fun in the sun minus the cocktails.

If you need help with your addiction please call us at 800-507-7389.

Sobriety Defined

Sobriety

Sobriety is a condition of not having any mind or mood altering substances in your body. In treatment, sobriety is the independence from consuming or craving mind altering substances. The beginning of sobriety is physical abstinence. Abstinence from all mind altering drugs, including alcohol is the bare minimum for recovery. Without being totally abstinent someone who wants to be sober, especially and addict and alcoholic cannot start making a new life for themselves. Trying to just cut back, minimize or control the use of substance and drinking sounds like a good idea but it never works especially for the true addict and alcoholic. The true addict and alcoholic are defined by their inability to control their drinking and drug use once they have started. So just cutting back is never option for real sobriety. The first and most important aspect of sobriety then is of course to be sober and totally abstinent.

Sobriety is more than just the physical abstinence from drugs and alcohol though. There is also emotional sobriety. Emotional sobriety is maintaining balance and harmony in every aspect of your life. There are times in physical sobriety that an addict or alcoholic doesn’t actually pick up the drug or drink but they become so worked up over something in their lives that they have essentially relapse on an emotional level. This may or may not lead to the loss physical sobriety. In recovery the word sobriety usually refers to something a lot more than just not drinking alcohol or abusing drugs. Those who are a part of the 12 step approach view sobriety as a life where the individual is not only free of addiction but also moving towards complete physical, emotional, mental and spiritual health. Abstinence is something that can be forced onto an individual by others, but sobriety requires a lifelong commitment that requires personal effort. Getting sober in this instance is not a once-off event but instead a continuing process.

Sobriety is a journey and all the individual needs for success is to keep on moving forward. This means facing all the challenges that appear along the way, and seeking out the right type of help and support. As the months and years in sobriety accumulate, dealing with life becomes a lot easier. It is important to realize, though, that the end of the path is never quite reached no matter how long people remain sober. This should not be a cause of concern as most of the fun of life is to be found in the journey itself and not at the destination. Really the definition of sobriety is whatever you want it to be for yourself. It can either be the definition of a condition or it can be a way of life. Either way there’s one thing for certain about what sobriety is – it is total and complete abstinence from drugs and alcohol. That part of the definition of sobriety never changes. Sobriety can just mean a lot more if someone wants it to.

If you need help with your addiction please call us at 800-507-7389.

If I relapse should I go back to rehab?

Should I go back to rehab?

If I relapse should I go back to rehab?

Working in addiction treatment, this is a question that I hear all the time. Many people who go back to using drugs and alcohol after treatment don’t think they should go back to rehab if they relapse. They’ll say things like “I’ve been to rehab before and it didn’t work” or “I already know everything they have to tell me.” The thing is, rehab is a lot more than therapy and learning about recovery. Even if you feel like you have learned everything you need to know about the disease of addiction and yourself, there are still reasons you should go back to rehab if you relapse.

If I relapse should I go back to rehab? Environmental

One of the most important things about rehab is that it gives you a safe place to be during those early days of recovery. The first thirty days are often the hardest, and many addicts and alcoholics relapse during this time, especially if they are in the same environment where they were using. If you want different results, you need to do something differently, and changing your environment is one of the first changes you should make. Just because you know how to get sober, it doesn’t mean you actually can or will do it. This is why it is important for you to go back to rehab if you relapse.

If I relapse should I go back to rehab? Support

One of the most important reasons you should go back to rehab if you relapse is because of the support system it provides. The real thing that keeps people clean and sober is not knowledge of recovery, it is their relationships with other people; their support system. There is a reason that 12 step groups have meetings and you are supposed to get a sponsor-we need other people to recover. What most people need in early recovery is support from people who understand what they are going through, not tips on “how to avoid triggers.” They need to see people who were once where they are and who have had success in recovery. They need to build relationships with people who can show them how they can attain lasting recovery.

If I relapse should I go back to rehab? Knowledge

Ok, you may think that you know everything about recovery, but you don’t. Recovery is not about memorizing the 12 steps or reading every page of recovery literature. If you went back to drugs and alcohol, then there were obviously some fundamental things you did not learn in rehab. For example:

  • You did not surrender.
  • You did not take suggestions from people who were trying to help you.
  • You weren’t completely honest.
  • You were not open minded enough to learn everything you needed to know.

Most people who relapse, if they’re being honest with themselves, know that they did not grasp one or more of these fundamental concepts. Going back to rehab if you relapse is the safest and smartest option and it gives you the best chance for recovery in the future.

If you need help with your addiction please call us at 800-507-7389.

Demi Lovato in Sober Living

Demi Lovato in Sober Living

 

Demi Lovato in Sober Living     

Demi Lovato is a beautiful young Disney star who has also struggled with the darkness of bulimia, cutting, and bipolar disorder. And she hasn’t tried to hide it. Demi Lovato is in sober living and she has been very vocal about her struggles. Demi Lovato chose to stay in sober living because she felt it would help resist relapsing. And this is what sober living is all about. Sober living is mean to give the individual a safe place to go when they are struggling. Demi Lovato’s struggles with her eating disorders, cutting and bipolar show us all that diseases such as this can affect everyone and anyone. They also show us that everyone needs a little help sometimes to get through hard times in their life and there is no shame in that. Sober living is available for a purpose.

So what is sober living exactly? Sober living is also known as a halfway house. After completing some form of treatment, it is imperative for individuals to go into sober housing so that they can rebuild the lost link with the real world and with sobriety. It’s important that they have confidence and a positive approach. Sober living helps individuals such as Demi Lovato, to maintain their sobriety once their treatment program is completed.

• Sober living provides a real life environment to the addicts in contrast to a treatment center. By providing homely atmosphere, they help a person to cope up with stress and pressures of outside life while seeking support in a safe environment.

Individuals living at sober living are made to do constructive activities to occupy time and make them live without the use of their eating disorder, addiction etc.

  • Sober living keeps a resident agreement, which has to be signed by each new resident. This warns them from using alcohol or any kind of drug and also in a case such as Demi Lovato’s asks them not to act out on their disorders. They will also conduct frequent medical checkups to see whether the residents are going as per the agreement. If any one goes against the agreement, they will be asked to leave sober living.
  • Sober living holds a resident as the head of the house and another resident as the peer coordinator. These two heads help and keep the house in order to make sure all the necessary things needed for a new resident to recover are available.
  • Most sober living facilities conduct weekly meetings. This helps in evaluating the progress of recovery for each individual.
  • Sober living conducts frequent alcohol tests and drug screening. Sober living also asks each resident in the house to keep an accountability agreement. This means that if one person sees another person acting out on an eating disorder, cutting etc. then they will tell the head of the house or the manager of the sober living facility

Sober living is a great place for addicts, alcoholics, and those struggling with other disease or behavioral issues to find a safe place to get their lives back on track. Demi Lovato used sober living for this exact purpose.

Sources: http://www.nydailynews.com/entertainment/gossip/demi-lovato-residing-sober-living-facility-year-article-1.1238340

If you need help with your addiction please call us at 800-507-7389.

Top 5 Songs about Sobriety

Pink - Sober

Pink - Sober

There are songs about everything now days. Most commonly you will find songs about getting high and drunk but on the rare occasion you will find that one that those of us who are trying to get sober can relate to. Here are the top 5 songs about sobriety.

Pink’s, “Sober”

She is well known for topping charts, being a brassy diva and songs like “U + Ur Hand” or “So What”. Her music is great for the up and coming teen trying to find themselves of the newly heartbroken girl who has to find the worth inside of them. Pink though has managed to tap into a different kind of emotion in her song from the 2008 album, Funhouse and it is now our number one song of top 5 songs about sobriety.

“That’s not the way I want my story to end.” “But how do I feel this good sober.” These two lines scream the entire theme of Pink’s song “Sober”. This song on the list of top 5 songs about sobriety is more dark and vulnerable than most. It really gets down to the emotions and insecurities of being sober.

“Lookin’ for myself sober.”  An addict or alcoholic trying to get clean and stay clean can find meaning in this song and really relate to the personal, sad and kind of dark flow of it.

Tool, “Sober

This second song on the top 5 songs of sobriety came out on Tool’s 1993 album Undertow. The song “Sober” truly shows how deep addiction and alcoholism can take a person. “Why can’t we not be sober, I just want to start this over,” before declaring he’s just a worthless liar and an imbecile. This song is perfect for the junkie musicians who have gotten sober because this song talks about only coming up with artistic genius while being really high.

Nine Inch Nails, “Hurt”

On the album Downward Spiral, it received a Grammy Award and even a cover by Johnny Cash. With a tempo that’s enough to bring tears to your eyes the lyrics just push it over the edge. “If I could start again, A million miles away, I would keep myself, I would find a way”. Hurt could be about self-mutilation and suicide too but it definitely applies to sobriety and the “hurt” using and drinking causes.

Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Under the Bridge”

As we all who listen to RHCP know, their lead singer, Anthony Kledis suffered from addiction and Under the Bridge is his story. Under the Bridge came out on the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ 5th studio album Blood Sugar Sex Magik. Kiedis wrote much of the song’s lyrics during a period when he felt distraught and emotionally drained from sobriety. He had maintained sobriety for roughly three years and felt that this had distanced him from his band mates. One of the most notable verses in the song discuss the harsh effects of drugs, their role in destroying many of Kiedis’ past relationships, and impact on his happiness. “I don’t ever want to feel like I did that day. Take me to the place I love;” the place he loves being his band mates, friends and family

Staind, “It’s Been a While”

“It’s been a while since I could say that I wasn’t addicted” The song with the lyrics that would resonate with every recovering person came out in April 2001 on their album Break the Cycle. In “It’s Been Awhile”, singer Aaron Lewis sings of someone who takes stock of his life. He makes references to his previous drug addiction problem and failed relationships. “It’s been awhile since I could say I loved myself as well” “It’s been awhile since I couldn’t look at myself straight”.

There is tons of music out there that references a drug addiction or problems with alcoholism and there is tons of music out there that talks about sobriety. This is just our top 5 songs about sobriety. Put them on your playlist and you will find yourself relating we guarantee it.

If you need help with your addiction please call us at 800-507-7389.

Sober House Curfew

 

Sober House Curfew

Sober House Curfew

 

Sober houses can be an integral step in recovery after receiving treatment at a residential drug and alcohol recovery center. Sober houses provide an interim step between a highly structured treatment environment and a person in recovery living on his or her own. Better outcomes are shown for those individuals who participate in this gradual phasing process: more remain sober, and those that remain sober do so for a longer period in time.

A sober house provides structure for the recovering alcoholic or drug addict. Most sober houses have a set of rules that must be followed in order for individuals to remain in residence. For instance, a sober house promotes recovery by requiring residents to attend 12-step meetings, submit to random drug and alcohol screening, and become an active participant in his or her recovery from addiction. In addition, sober house curfews are enforced. Residents are expected to be home at a certain time and the sober house manager will perform bed checks to ensure that all residents are home at the expected time.

The sober house curfew is usually dependent on the amount of time you have been in a sober house, and if you are fulfilling your obligations as a resident of a sober house. The sober house curfew for someone who has just moved in is generally earlier than for those who have been in residence longer. In addition, the sober house curfew is usually later for those who have a job or are going to school. Oftentimes, house managers will use the sober house curfew as a punishment when someone violates another sober house rule. For example, if you fail to do your chores or don’t come home on time, you will be put on early curfew for a period of time.

Besides the sober house curfew, there are usually other certain house rules you must follow in a sober house. Often, sober houses prohibit certain items (i.e. drugs, alcohol, weapons) or behaviors (i.e. residents are not allowed to spend time in bars or hookah lounges); require a resident to be involved in school, work, or outpatient treatment; and do not allow overnight guests. The punishment for breaking rules can range from early curfew or financial penalty to expulsion from the sober house, depending on the offense. This structure can be essential for long term sobriety.

The benefits of living in a sober house in early recovery can be invaluable. Sober houses provide a safe, drug-free environment for those new in recovery. Living in a sober house with other people in recovery allows you to make friends with people who have the same goals and issues as yourself. Your housemates provide you with support and understanding, which is crucial to success in recovery.

Sober houses also provide accountability. Residents are less likely to end up in situations that may lead to relapse because of the strict enforcement of rules. Many people find that returning home or to living on their own after inpatient treatment can be very dangerous. It is easy to slip back into behaviors and habits that they practiced while using or drinking. This can be a step down the road to relapse for many addicts and alcoholics. Sober houses provide an easier transition between inpatient treatment and independent living.

Liked this article? Then check out : Sober House Rules

If you need help with your addiction please call us at 800-507-7389.