Man Thinking About Alternatives for Alcohol and Drugs While Stressed

Alternatives to Drugs and Alcohol for Stressful Times

Experiencing stress can be a trigger for the consumption of alcohol and drugs. For former addicts, stress can contribute to a relapse of alcohol or drug abuse. Since many substances can give you temporary relief of the negative effects of stress, it may be tempting for former addicts to return to using these substances again. In order to be able to maintain your sobriety during stressful times in your life, it is crucial to learn to cope with stress without using alcohol or drugs.

Identify What You Can and Cannot Control

One of the first steps to coping with stress is to identify the source of your stress. From there, you can begin to identify what aspects of it you can and cannot control. For example, during this nationwide pandemic due to COVID-19, you may not be able to control whether or not you contract the virus—but you can control the steps that you take to protect yourself.

Make Time in Your Day to Do Something You Enjoy

Distraction can be a powerful tool in managing stress. During stressful times in your life, make sure to take time for yourself and engage in an activity that you enjoy. Having a happy experience may help alleviate some of the stress you are experiencing. At worst, it may provide a welcome distraction.

Participate in Physical Activity

Another way to cope with stress is to do a physical activity. One example would be to go for a run, as physical activities can release endorphins, which make you feel better. Staying physically active also has many health benefits—not only for your physical health but also for your emotional and mental health.

Sober living homes can provide structure for former addicts who are working hard to maintain their sobriety. These facilities can also help their residents by providing the tools to cope with stress in other ways. Contact the Tharros House today to learn more about how sober living homes may benefit you.

Addiction Hereditary in Boston Massachusetts

Is Addiction Hereditary?

When it comes to addiction, a question many people have is whether or not addiction is hereditary. Substantial research has been done on this topic, and there does seem to evidence that addiction may be hereditary. Specifically, there appears to be a connection between genetics and addiction to drugs or alcohol. If one or both of your parents has suffered from addiction, it does not necessarily mean that you will also have an addiction—it would just make you more susceptible to it and more likely to have one than the average person.

Genetic Links Associated with Addiction

Presently, scientists believe that heredity accounts for approximately half of the risk that a person has of developing an addiction. This understanding is based on the analysis of patterns of inheritance. It is important to remember that addiction is a medical illness, so it develops in the same way as many other illnesses. It is not simply a “choice,” as some people believe it to be.

How Does Someone Develop an Addiction?

In many cases, addiction occurs when a person with an underlying genetic vulnerability becomes exposed to an environment that triggers the addiction. When it comes to drug and alcohol addiction, stress is one of the common environmental factors that contribute to the development of the addiction.

Another environmental factor includes the availability of the addictive substance. Often, the surroundings in which people grow up in dictate what they crave and contribute to how they act—but ultimately, a person has the choice whether or not to consume alcohol or try a drug in the first place.

For individuals who have gotten sober and want to maintain their sobriety by living with other sober people, a sober living home is a great option. Contact the Tharros House today to learn more about the benefits of sober living homes.

addiction to pills Boston Massachusetts

Common Misconceptions About Addiction

There are many misconceptions out there about addiction. One of the most common misconceptions is that people who appear to have their life completely together cannot be suffering from an addiction. For some people, addiction is easier to hide than for others.

Misconception #1: Addictions Are Always Obvious

Some people are able to hide their addictions and live their lives normally without most people suspecting that they are actually battling an addiction. These people often are able to maintain their day-to-day responsibilities, like working at their job and spending time with their families. The term often used to describe those able to mask their addictions from others is called a “functional addict.”

Misconception #2: Addiction is a Choice

While a person often takes the first initial step in trying a substance, such as alcohol, having an ongoing addiction is not by choice. It is important to understand that brain chemistry plays a significant role in addiction.

Misconception #3: An Addict Can Quit Anytime They Want

It is a common belief that addicts can simply quit using the substance to which they are addicted and be free from addiction. Unfortunately, this is not typically the case. It often takes more than just willpower and the desire to quit using the addictive substance.

Misconception #4: If A Person Has Not Yet Hit “Rock Bottom,” Then There is No Need to Quit

Another common misconception out there regarding addiction is that an addict must hit “rock-bottom” (meaning the lowest of low points in their life) before they finally take the steps to overcome their addiction. This is simply not the case. While some people dealing with addiction may need a big wakeup call before they seek treatment, others may come to understand the severity of their addiction and seek help before a major incident occurs.

living with addiction wall in Boston Massachusetts

Living with Addiction

Living with addiction is not easy, as anyone in this position already knows. The hardest part about dealing with an addiction is admitting to yourself that you have an addiction, and you are ready to seek help. The good news is that once you have accomplished that, then the hardest part is already behind you.

Exploring Addiction Treatment Options

Once you have decided to get sober, the next step is to decide what type of addiction treatment is right for you. There are many different addiction treatment options, including behavioral counseling, medication, and sober living homes. One or more of these options may be helpful to your recovery.

Behavioral Counseling

Behavioral counseling can be beneficial for those trying to recover from addiction. You can choose from individual, family, or group counseling. This type of counseling can help you to identify the root causes of your addiction. You can also learn healthier coping skills and how to repair broken relationships that were impacted by your addiction.

Medication

Your doctor may recommend certain medications to help you with recovery. Medication may be used to help you manage your withdrawal symptoms and to help prevent relapse. You may also be prescribed medication to help treat any underlying mental health conditions you may have, such as anxiety or depression.

Sober Living Homes

Another treatment option is to move into a sober living home. Sober living homes are generally for those who are further along in their recovery and are seeking a safe place to continue with their sobriety among others who are in a similar place in life. Sober living homes can offer group meetings and activities that can help take your mind off of the difficulties of living with your addiction. You can also meet and make close friends at these sober living home events, which will also benefit your recovery.

Contact us today at The Tharros House for more information regarding our sober living home.

Addiction Boston Massachusetts

Addiction Can Change Forms

When most people think of the word addiction, they think of alcohol or drugs. However, there are many other addictions out there. One example is an addiction to food. It is important to realize that if a person has an addiction to one substance, as it is possible for their addiction to change forms.

For example, while cutting back on drinking alcohol, a person who was suffering from an alcohol addiction may find that they have now become addicted to food. Someone with an addiction to food may develop an addiction to smoking cigarettes when they attempt to work on healthy eating habits. There are many ways that addiction can change forms, so it is something that is important to keep in mind during the recovery process.

How Is It Possible for Addiction to Change Forms?

When you consume or use a substance that you are addicted to, it results in a release of dopamine in your brain. The release of dopamine gives you a pleasant feeling, which further fuels the addiction since you consciously or subconsciously will seek to replicate that feeling.

When you stop consuming or using the substance that you had been addicted to, you may still seek out that familiar dopamine release. Unfortunately, the addiction cycle may begin again, this time with something else. However, the good news is that you can use the skills and knowledge you learned while working past your first addiction to stop another one from forming. When you start to notice the signs of addiction, you can use what you have learned to end the addiction before it begins.

The Tharros House is a sober living home for men located in Massachusetts. While living in a sober home, you can learn skills and coping methods that can help you successfully face relapses of any kind in the future.