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Behavioral Rehab

Peer Pressure and Addiction

Peer pressure comes in many forms. It is most widely acknowledged for being a pervasive force during school years; however, peer pressure can affect people of all ages.

 

Peer pressure is any sort of influence that pressures someone to act a certain way. Peer pressure can be direct or indirect, but the result is often the same: it results in someone changing their behavior to match that of their peer group.

 

Unfortunately, many people succumb to addiction as a result of peer pressure. In this article, we’re going to talk about how peer pressure can lead to addiction.

What Is Peer Pressure?

As mentioned above, peer pressure is a type of behavior engaged in – either consciously or unconsciously – by members of a peer group that encourages other members of that peer group to behave a certain way.

 

The two main types of peer pressure are indirect peer pressure and direct peer pressure.

 

  • Indirect peer pressure occurs when an individual becomes aware of the behavior of other members of their peer group. They may feel called to emulate this behavior in hopes that it will help them fit in better.
  • Direct peer pressure occurs when a member (or members) directly encourage or persuade someone to participate in a certain behavior.

 

There are also differences between positive and negative peer pressure.

 

  • Positive peer pressure occurs when someone is pressured into participating in positive, healthy behavior.
  • Negative peer pressure occurs when someone is pressured into doing something that is unhealthy.

How Peer Pressure Leads to Addiction

There are many different instances in which peer pressure can lead to addiction. Both direct and indirect peer pressure can contribute to the problem.

 

Many people have seen anti-drug advertisements, movies, or television shows in which a drug-addled youth encourages a younger, innocent member of their peer group to use drugs.

While this certainly can happen, indirect peer pressure occurs just as often – if not more. Young people are easily influenced by their peers and tend to imitate the behavior of people that they respect and admire.

 

If a youth sees someone using drugs – especially someone that they deem to be a positive influence – then they will become more likely to use drugs themselves. This is especially true if a youth becomes accepted by a group of friends that like to use drugs.

 

It’s also important to note, however, that positive peer pressure can play a role in preventing drug addiction. Encouraging your child to hang out with healthy, positive-minded individuals may provide them with positive peer pressure that steers them away from drug use.

Conclusion

Peer pressure is, unfortunately, an unavoidable part of life. Fortunately, by preparing for it, one can learn to avoid the influence of peer pressure.

 

By encouraging children to hang out with healthy, like-minded individuals, parents can help reduce the risks of peer pressure and addiction. Remember that love, compassion, and open communication are important tools for checking in with your children.

 

If you think that your teen has fallen under peer pressure and begun to use drugs, don’t hesitate to get into contact with a rehab center.

 

Written by Nigel Ford

The Importance of Healthy Relationships for Preventing Addiction

One of the most important things that can help a person avoid addiction is having healthy relationships with the people in their lives. This is particularly true during childhood. Maintaining healthy relationships with family members, friends, and even school teachers can be instrumental in helping to prevent addiction.

In this article, we’ll explain exactly why relationships are so important for helping to prevent addictions. If you are struggling with addiction, or if you’re in the care of a loved one, make sure that healthy relationships are a priority in your life.

What Makes Relationships So Important?

A person learns a tremendous amount through the relationships that they share with others. People often tend to learn about themselves the most through relationships. If one is observant, they can make careful observations about themselves based on the relationships that they hold with other people.

Relationships are even more important for children and youth, though they may not be as aware of the implications of healthy relationships. For the younger generations, relationships are generally important because they can help people develop a healthy sense of self. In the long-term, this can help prevent the development of mental health problems like anxiety.

The importance of healthy relationships becomes more obvious when you consider the negative repercussions of unhealthy relationships. Unhealthy, or toxic, relationships are those which stunt or even reverse the growth of an individual.

Many different types of relationships can influence an individual’s likelihood of developing an addiction.

Family Relationships

Family relationships are among the most crucial. An individual who has healthy relationships with their family members are more likely to develop a healthy relationship with themselves. They will be less likely to experience anxiety, self-doubt, or insecurity – all problems which many people avoid or cover up with addictions.

On the other hand, toxic family relationships could lead people to develop these problems. This can encourage addiction.

Personal Relationships and Friendships

People learn a lot about themselves through their personal relationships and friendships. Surrounding yourself with healthy, encouraging people will help provide you with emotional support. This will make you less prone to isolation, social anxiety, or other issues that may lead to addiction.

Unfortunately, the opposite is also true. Surrounding yourself with unhealthy or toxic people – especially those that struggle with addictions themselves – will make you much more likely to develop an addiction yourself.

School and Work Relationships

Sometimes, people who are not from healthy families or who have difficulty with friends may do well by developing good relationships with their teachers at school or their employers. Having a healthy relationship with a teacher or an employer provides an opportunity for people to obtain wisdom that they may not otherwise obtain from their normal relationships.

Conclusion

Relationships are incredibly important for everyone. One of the best things that relationships can do is help to encourage healthy behavior and to prevent the development of addictions.

If you or a loved one are struggling with an addiction, then don’t hesitate to seek help from a rehab center.

 

 

Written by Nigel Ford

Drug Abuse and Trauma

Drug abuse and trauma often go hand-in-hand. Many drug users are the victims of trauma already, and yet the addictions that they are likely to fall into may cause even more trauma. This is part of the vicious cycle of drug addiction, and one of the most difficult barriers on the road to recovery.

 

In this article, we’ll talk about how drug abuse and trauma are linked together and how understanding these issues can make someone more likely to overcome their addictions.

 

How Trauma Can Lead to Addiction

One of the main leading causes of addiction is trauma.

 

Trauma is an emotional issue that arises when a person has to go through an intense experience that they are unable to mentally cope with. Since the mind is incapable of coping with the experience, it is internalized in the body in the form of trauma.

Just because trauma has been internalized, however, does not mean that it is gone. People who suffer from trauma often experience things that can hinder their enjoyment of life, such as:

 

  • ‘Triggers,’ certain situations, people, or things that cause them to behave erratically or experience anxiety
  • Being unable to enjoy certain activities or certain places without knowing why
  • Feeling that certain memories are blocked off or inaccessible
  • Frequent emotional problems like anxiety, depression, irritability, and similar things

 

These symptoms can occur alone or in combination with each other. As you can imagine, living with these issues could pose a problem. This means that people who struggle with trauma are more likely to develop drug addictions.

 

Drugs seem like an easy fix – especially when you consider that most traumatized people don’t actually realize that they’re traumatized. Rather, they feel like they are just ‘born like that,’ or that something is wrong with them. That something, they believe, can be healed – or at least made manageable – by using drugs.

 

Drugs Can Cause Trauma

Not every drug user is traumatized, though – and even those people who begin to use drugs to escape from trauma may find that their addiction leads to even more trauma.

 

Drug addiction can be traumatic by its nature. Using drugs does not actually provide anyone with new coping mechanisms – though the drugs may provide that illusion. The gritty nature of the drug underworld may lead people into even more experiences that they are unable to mentally cope with – situations that must later be dealt with in the form of trauma.

 

The compounding trauma that many drug users acquire can make it increasingly difficult to stop using drugs. These traumas may surface soon after they stop using or take a ‘sobriety break,’ only to lead them back into relapse.

Conclusion

There are many things that can cause trauma, and traumatized people are more likely to develop drug addictions. Understanding how trauma works can help struggling drug users overcome their addiction by working through their trauma. A rehab center or counselor can help you understand your trauma better.

 

Written by Nigel Ford

Triggers that Can Cause Drug Cravings

One of the biggest problems that recovering drug addicts must deal with is a relapse. The rates of relapse are incredibly high, even among people who have successfully gone through rehab. One of the reasons for this is because people may not properly learn how to deal with their drug cravings and the triggers that lead up to them.

 

A trigger can be a person, place, situation, or thing that causes an individual to crave drugs. Drug cravings can be dealt with in a number of ways, but one of the best ways to deal with them is a preventative measure: be aware of your triggers, and learn how to deal with or avoid these triggers so that the cravings don’t come in the first place.

 

This article will outline some of the most common triggers for people who are going through drug cravings.

Most Common Drug Craving Triggers

Understanding these triggers can be a huge help for any recovering addict who wants to avoid risking a relapse. Here are some of the most common triggers for recovering users:

 

  • Being in an area where drugs were frequently used. The environment a recovering user puts themselves in is incredibly important, as going anywhere that they used drugs can be a huge trigger.

    This trigger is especially important to consider when you recognize that many users abuse drugs in their hometown. People who have recovered and are hoping to make their way to school or work may want to plan a travel route that allows them to avoid any houses or parks that they used to use drugs at.

    In some serious cases, people have found it necessary to move to a different town because their hometown (or the town that they were addicted to) causes them to crave drugs.

  • Being around other drug users, especially ones that you used with. Being around any sort of drug users can be a trigger for a recovering addict, but cravings can become particularly intense if they spend time with someone that they frequently used drugs with. This can bring back fond memories and become a serious trigger.
  • Seeing or hearing media related to drugs. A news story about drugs, a rap song with lyrics related to drug use, or movies that show drug use can all be huge triggers for anyone recovering from an addiction. These triggers can be difficult to avoid, as they can often arise without warning.
  • Boredom can be a trigger in itself. Many recovering addicts are aware that if they get high, they will suddenly feel motivated and enthusiastic. Unfortunately, this is likely to lead back down the road to addiction. Boredom should be avoided by developing a lifestyle filled with activities and hobbies.

 

Conclusion

As you can see, there are many different triggers for recovering addicts. We’ve listed just a few in this article, but there are many more to be aware of. If you or a loved one are working through recovery, don’t hesitate to get in touch with a rehab center or a drug counselor to help you along the path.

 

Written by Nigel Ford

Risk Factors for Drug Addiction

Drug addiction is not selective. There are no specific types of people who will develop an addiction – the problem can strike people from all walks of life.

However, some risk factors may make people more likely to use drugs or become susceptible to addiction than others. Things like environment, heredity, diseases, and mental health problems can all make someone more likely to develop an addiction.

In this article, we’re going to talk about some of the most common risk factors that could contribute to the development of drug addiction.

What Are Risk Factors?

A risk factor is something that can put you at risk of developing a condition, trait, or behavior. In regards to addiction, risk factors are issues that would make you more likely to develop a drug addiction at some point in life.

Understanding risk factors is useful for helping to prevent and manage addictions. While living with one or more of these risk factors by no means guarantees that you will develop an addiction, accepting and understanding these risk factors can help you avoid the possibility entirely.

Risk Factors for Drug Addiction

These are some of the most common risk factors that can increase the likelihood of someone developing an addiction.

Environment
A person’s environment – especially during childhood – can have a huge impact on the likelihood of them developing an addiction. Children raised by parents who struggle with addictions, or who grow up in neighborhoods or cities where drug addiction is prevalent are more likely to develop drug addictions later in life.

It’s not just children who are susceptible to their environments, though. An individual who has spent their whole life sober may suddenly be at risk for addiction if they move to a new town where drugs run rampant.

Heredity
While the link is not exactly clear, there is some evidence that heredity can affect someone’s likelihood to use drugs. People who are born to parents who have had addictions are more likely to use drugs themselves – even if their parents never used drugs around them.

Mental Disorders
People who struggle with mental disorders, such as anxiety, depression, and chronic stress, are much more likely to use drugs than other people. These drugs may be illicit, or they may be prescribed by a doctor – whatever the case, drug abuse, and addiction are much more common among people who have mental health problems – a problem that leads to a dual diagnosis.

People who seek medical assistance often assume that they are less likely to develop an addiction because their medication will be regulated. Unfortunately, statistically, huge numbers of Americans have gotten addicted to prescription drugs even when taking them according to their doctor’s orders.

Physical Health Problems
People with physical health problems also become more likely to abuse drugs. This is particularly true for people who are prescribed strong prescription painkillers without being properly informed about the risks and dangers involved with using these drugs.

Lack of Education
People who are uneducated about drugs and addiction may simply not see addiction as a threat. This can make them much more likely to use drugs to self-medicate or to have fun, without being aware of any of the repercussions.

Conclusion

Nobody is exempt from the dangers of drug addiction, but some people are more likely to experience problems with drugs than others. Risk factors for drug addiction include mental health problems, education, and environmental issues.

If you or a loved one are at risk of developing an addiction, don’t hesitate to seek help from a rehab facility.

Written By Nigel Ford

Is group therapy helpful for treating drug addiction?

Group therapies of all sorts are available for helping people who are struggling with drug addiction. The most popular group therapy for drug addiction is known as Narcotics Anonymous, and many people have reported that the group was instrumental in helping them stay clean and sober.

 

In this article, we’ll discuss what group therapy is and how it can be useful for helping encourage people to stay sober.

 

What is group therapy?

Group therapy is a form of therapy that allows a number of people to engage in some form of therapy.

 

In its most common form, group therapy for recovering drug users provides a format in which a number of different recovering users can share their experiences with each other.

Depending on the particular group and its facilitator, there may or may not be a ‘theme’ to the therapy session. In many cases, there is no theme, and instead, just an open discussion. However, some forms of group therapy – particularly those that are provided during a rehab program – are facilitated by a counselor or psychiatrist, who will guide the group through some therapeutic practice.

 

In most group therapy sessions, individuals will meet in a room where a number of chairs are arranged in a circle. This allows all the members of the group to engage with each other. In open-ended discussions, there is no ‘head’ of the group, and discussion will be organic.

 

Benefits of Group Therapy

Group therapy provides a number of benefits that one might not be able to experience if they were participating in one-on-one therapy.

 

  • During group therapy, a recovering drug user will be able to communicate with other drug users who have had similar experiences. Any drug user who has gone to therapy can attest to the difficulty of trying to explain addiction to someone who has never been addicted to drugs themselves.
  • Members of the group can share their own experiences, advice, tips, and tricks that they’ve used for managing their own addiction.
  • Group therapy provides recovering users an open, non-judgmental space where they can be open and honest about their addictions. Many users have a hard time finding a safe space where they can openly express themselves without being stigmatized.
  • Struggling group members will be able to model their behavior by figures in the group who have tackled their problems. Group sessions can provide recovering users with positive influences.
  • Group members can work together to overcome feelings of shame, guilt, pain, or stress, which they may otherwise have a difficult time confronting on their own or with friends and family who have never used.
  • Recovering drug users will be able to practice new social skills to help themselves reintegrate into society after sobering up.

 

These are just a few of the benefits that group therapy can provide.

 

Conclusion

Group therapy has been instrumental in helping many recovering drug users to stay sober. The group dynamic allows for a greater exchange of information and learning. If you or a loved one are struggling with recovery, perhaps group therapy could help propel you further down the road to recovery.

What kind of treatment is available for drug addiction?

Drug addiction is a challenging condition that a lot of people struggle through. One of the reasons that many people have trouble managing their addiction is because they are unaware of the types of treatment available, or because they think that certain types of treatment are unavailable to them.

 

In this article, we’re going to describe some of the common forms of treatment available for drug addicts.

 

Rehabilitation for Drug and Alcohol Users

 

The most common form of treatment for drug and alcohol users is total rehabilitation. Rehabilitation can comprise several different things, all of which are important for the treatment of drug and alcohol addictions.

 

It’s important to note that most of these things can be utilized on their own to help people work through their drug addictions. However, rehab is generally believed to be more effective than any of its individual parts because together, they provide a struggling drug user with a framework to help build a new life.

Therapy

 

One of the most important aspects of rehab is therapy. Therapy will help struggling addicts identify the issues that led to them using drugs in the first place, and will help provide them with the tools that they need to have a happy life when they complete their program.

Group Meetings

 

Group meetings are available during many rehab programs, and they are also a viable tool to help recovering addicts maintain their sobriety after they have completed treatment. Group meetings allow people to share experiences and knowledge about their addictions.

Detox

 

Depending on the severity of your addiction and the drugs that you’re addicted to, you may be required to go through a medically supervised detox before attending treatment. These will help to ensure that you can work through all the physical withdrawal symptoms before attending treatment.

 

Alternative and Holistic Treatments

 

Many studies and research papers have recognized the importance of holistic treatment for drug addiction. Holistic treatments help to treat both the mind and body of the patient. Instead of simply pushing through withdrawal and teaching an individual how to abstain from drugs, holistic treatments aim to restore health and balance throughout the whole person.

 

These include:

 

  • Biofeedback and neurofeedback programs, which identify neural imbalances that contribute to addiction.
  • Acupuncture, Somato-Emotional repatterning, or other techniques that repattern or redirect an individual’s energy and remove blockages
  • Ibogaine therapy, a form of psychedelic-assisted therapy that has a shockingly high success rate for treating serious addictions
  • Yoga, massage, and meditation, all of which contribute to mental and physical stability and can reduce the rates of relapse

 

Ideally, the best way to treat an addiction would be to tackle it from all possible angles. This would mean that including holistic treatments with traditional rehab would be most likely to lead a recovering addict to success.

 

In Conclusion

 

Drug addiction is a serious issue, and unfortunately, it can be difficult to treat. Fortunately, there are a vast number of different treatments available for helping people work through drug addictions.

What are the Most Effective Forms of Addiction Treatment?

There are a lot of different treatments that one can undergo if they’re struggling through addiction. There are various forms of rehabilitation, many holistic treatments and alternative approaches, and many different types of aftercare that can be employed.

 

The main concern that many people experience after they have completed a rehab program is whether or not they are going to relapse. Unfortunately, relapse rates with traditional rehab programs are relatively high. For this reason, it’s important to understand what forms of treatment will be the most effective for you.

 

Different Types of Addiction Treatment

 

These are some of the basic types of treatment programs available for struggling drug addicts.

 

  • Comprehensive rehab. Be it inpatient or outpatient rehab; a full rehab program often provides users with a number of the treatments described below – particularly therapy and group sessions. Rehab targets addiction from several angles, providing users with the tools and skills to avoid relapsing.
  • Many methods of therapy are employed in addiction treatment, ranging from cognitive behavioral therapy, group therapy, family therapy, and counseling. Therapy can help identify issues leading to addiction and uproot the problems at their core.
  • Group meetings. Group meetings, like Alcoholics Anonymous, can help drug addicts and alcoholics share stories, feelings, and knowledge about their recovery with other recovering users. Group meetings are often cited as being highly effective for preventing relapse.
  • Iboga is a very powerful hallucinogenic substance that thousands of people have used to treat their addictions. Iboga is a very intense experience that is not for everyone – however, those who are willing to work with iboga find a shockingly high rate of success when treating their drug addictions.
  • Alternative treatments. Many different alternative treatments can help drug addicts recover, including acupuncture, yoga, massage, biofeedback, and Somato-Emotional Release therapy.

What Types of Treatment Are Most Effective?

 

Ultimately, the type of treatment that would be effective for you depends a lot upon your personal psychology and physiology. One treatment that is effective for someone else may not work for you.

 

This is why it’s important to seek a treatment center that can help you develop a routine tailored to your own needs. Some factors to consider when ensuring effective treatment include:

 

  • Family therapy. Will you be given a chance to share with your family in a counseling setting?
  • Legal services. If necessary, will you have legal services available to help you?
  • Mental health services. Therapy and other services are necessary for recovering addicts.
  • Medical services. Things like detox, HIV/AIDS treatment, and other medical services are important.
    Educational services. It’s important to learn about addiction and psychology during recovery.
  • Continued care. Once you complete the program, will you be taken care of afterward with group meetings and checkups?

 

All of these things can make or break a recovering addict’s chances for success, so it’s important to look out for what you need to ensure that treatment will be effective.

Conclusion

 

The efficacy of addiction treatment is largely dependent on the individual and the type of treatment involved. If you are able to secure a treatment plan that meets your needs and is offered by qualified professionals using evidence-based techniques, then you will be most likely to succeed in your treatment.

 

Written by Nigel Ford

Can Alcohol Cause Depression?

Written by Nigel Ford

Alcohol is most commonly used in our society to help promote sociability, but many people also use it to numb undesirable feelings. Lots of people use anxiety to help them manage anxiety, depression, and stress.

What’s ironic about this is that alcohol abuse is actually known to cause depression. In the long-term, it certainly won’t help these problems – instead, it would make them worse. In this article, I’ll explain why.

How alcohol affects the body

The first thing that clues many people into alcohol’s ability to influence depressant is its drug classification: alcohol is considered a depressant drug.

Alcohol is a highly addictive substance, and it is known to cause both physical and mental addictions

For many people, however, the term depressant can be a bit of a misnomer. Depressants don’t just cause people to become depressed – if they did, nobody would use them. Rather, depressants are known to help slow (or depress) the effects of the central nervous system (CNS).

Because of alcohol’s ability to slow down the CNS, it has a remarkable ability to reduce anxiety – which is primarily caused by an over-excited nervous system. However, just because it can help people avoid their anxiety or depression in the short-term doesn’t mean that it can do so in the long-term.

How can alcohol cause depression?

There are several ways that alcohol can cause depression in both short- and long-term.

One of the most dangerous and life-threatening ways that alcohol can contribute to depression is by leading someone down the path of addiction. Alcohol is a highly addictive substance, and it is known to cause both physical and mental addictions.

● Physical addiction occurs when someone’s body becomes dependant on a substance – such as alcohol. If they aren’t able to get the drug in their system, they will experience withdrawal symptoms, like shaking, sweating, diarrhea, and anxiety.

● A mental addiction occurs when someone believes that they are unable to function without a drug or a substance.

Being addicted on its own can cause someone to be depressed. Recognizing that your life is controlled by a substance causes many people to feel powerless and unhappy. This, in turn, leads them to become more depressed.

This isn’t to mention the biological effects that alcohol can have on the brain. Alcohol affects the brain’s GABA system – a neurological system involved in helping to regulate feelings of anxiety, and to allow us to feel comfortable and at ease.

Constantly bombarding this system with alcohol eventually diminishes it, leading to imbalances in the system that may or may not be permanent. This can lead someone to develop serious problems with anxiety, stress, and yes – depression.

Furthermore, alcohol is known to cause people to blackout and behave in a manner that doesn’t suit them. This can lead to the loss of friends, jobs, or can cause irreparable damage in relationships that can cause someone to become depressed.

In Conclusion

As you can see, several reasons can lead someone to become depressed after consuming alcohol. If you are worried about developing depression or exacerbating an existing depressive condition, your best bet is to avoid it altogether. If you or a loved one is struggling with alcoholism, seek treatment as soon as possible.

What Happens When An Addict Fails Treatment Recovery?

Ideally, all addiction patients who go through the recovery process will recover from their disease and never relapse. Unfortunately, the world is not perfect, and many times, patients relapse. After a relapse, many addiction patients may find it very difficult to return to the recovery process. However, it is important to remember than many people experience relapse, and it is never too late, nor is a patient ever too far gone to begin the recovery process again.

One of the most challenging things for a patient to do is face their family and mend broken relationships. Restoring broken relationships with the family is an important step in ensuring the addict has a strong support system to help with rehabilitation. Often, it is helpful for the addict and family to have an unbiased person facilitating the initial conversations. Many families do not fully understand addiction, and in some cases, may actually be enabling the addict in their disease.

Another step to successful recovery includes creating healthy boundaries within the family. This can be everything from financial boundaries, boundaries in what is discussed about treatment and the addict’s disease, and understanding sensitive topics. Every family is different, so these boundaries may differ. However, all addicts need boundaries to help them in their recovery. If things go back to exactly the way they were, they may run the risk of relapse again. This is also why it is also important for addicts to seek out support groups aside from their families who may better understand their situation such as Alcoholics Anonymous or similar groups.

It is important for addicts who have failed treatment to remember that as long as they are willing to try again, it is a misstep, not a failure. Many people in the world have relapsed multiple times. The beauty of addiction treatment programs is they always offer a place for addicts to start when they are ready to deal with their disease.

Typically, people who follow the rehabilitation program steps will have success in remaining sober. However, relapse usually occurs when one or more of the steps is not followed. If treatment recovery fails, the addict, the family, and the rehabilitation center need to figure out where the breakdown was, so relapse does not occur again. In some cases, it may be that the addict was skipping appoints, or reverted to an old friend group, and in other cases, it may be that the addict’s family was enabling them.

There is a multitude of reasons why treatment recover fails. But, the important thing to remember is there is always time to start again. When an addict and their family are committed to fighting addiction, there is hope. Many rehabilitation centers encompass treatment for the patient, along with education for the family. Addiction is a terrifying disease and can do a lot of harm to a person’s life. It may take several tries before successful treatment occurs. The most important thing is to remember never to give up hope. There is always help right around the corner.