Addiction: How Women Differ From Men

women addiction

Thanks to a growing body of research, we now know that addiction and addiction recovery is different for men and women alike. In fact, women face some unique challenges including having a harder time quitting and a greater chance at relapse. Differences between women and men also include how they develop a substance use disorder, experience consequences of use and what they need in terms of treatment and lasting sobriety. Men and women experience addiction differently and often wrestle with different societal pressures and emotions. Here’s a look at a few key differences: Women become addicted faster with smaller amounts than […]

For Family: Spotting the Signs of Mental Illness

signs of mental illness

Mental illness and substance use disorder often go hand in hand – in fact, there’s even a name for it: co-occurring disorder or dual diagnosis. According to a National Survey on Drug Use and Health, nearly 8 million people in the U.S. experience both a mental disorder and substance use disorder simultaneously. Either disorder — mental illness or a substance use disorder — can develop first. Data from the National Institute on Drug Abuse shows high rates of cooccurring substance use disorders and anxiety disorders (generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder) as well as  mental disorders such as depression and […]

Why You Should Embrace Being Uncomfortable

comfort zone

“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” This is a great quote and it can’t be more spot on – especially as you work through recovery and begin to build a new sober life without the crutch of drugs or alcohol. Think about. A big part of the recovery journey requires going outside of your comfort zone – to talk about your history with a counselor or group of recovery peers, to go through the 12-steps, to try a new food or relaxation technique, to make amends with a family member or friend, to fight through a craving […]

Keeping Your Recovery Strong This Winter

The winter is a wonderful time of year and yet it’s also a time where stress, cold and flu and temptations can put your health and your recovery at risk. Here’s help: Safeguard against stress. Chronic stress can drain your immune system and increase your risk of getting sick. In fact, one study found that people who experienced a major stressful event were two times more likely to catch the common cold. Think of “chilling out” as just another recovery to-do this season. Cuddle up with a good book, soak in a warm bath, sip some warm tea, meditate, color […]

Tips for Surviving Mental Relapse

mental relapse

During recovery, it’s pretty common to think about using again – or mentally relapsing – but it can be a slippery slope if these thoughts aren’t fleeting. If you remain in a mental relapse for too long, you may find yourself battling intense cravings, bargaining, skipping therapy sessions or meetings and/or putting yourself in risky situations. Perhaps worse, you might even begin mentally planning your relapse. Now, here’s the good news: Even if you’re in a mental relapse, you can prevent yourself from using again with some healthy coping skills. If the thought of using becomes too great – even […]

Rural Community Is Treating Opioid Problem Like Natural Disaster

opioid

The opioid epidemic is hitting rural communities across the U.S. hard – and, in fact, a  recent poll found that it’s the most urgent health problem facing rural Americans. A whopping 48 percent of poll respondents said opioid addiction has worsened over the past five years. But what’s the solution? Should the current opioid crisis be treated like a natural disaster? That’s the unique approach a rural community in Washington is taking as they fight against the increasing rates of overdoses. Members of Snohomish County in Western Washington are responding to the drug crisis the same way they did a […]

Doing Your Best on Bad Days

bad days

Addiction recovery is filled with hope and possibility – but you’ll also experience your fair share of down days. We all do. But how do you cope without jeopardizing your hard-won sobriety? Here are a few tips to help you survive those bad bays so you come out shining and even stronger in your recovery. Write it down. Journaling is a great exercise to help you process and put into perspective any negative feelings that are causing a down mood. In fact, studies show that expressing your feelings through words can decrease the power they have over you and your […]

4 Myths About PTSD

PTSD

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is quite common – with roughly 8 million people reported to have PTSD in the United States – and yet the condition remains fairly misunderstood. In honor of Mental Illness Awareness Week, we’re setting the record straight on some of the most common and damaging myths surrounding PTSD. Share this information and help to stop the stigma and encourage people with PTSD to get the help they need and deserve. Only military veterans can get PTSD. While PTSD does impact American soldiers, it can also impact someone who has lived through sexual assault, domestic abuse, a natural […]