Archive for January, 2014

Common Drug Treatment Terms Defined

Friday, Jan. 31st 2014

Truly Understand the Nomenclature of Drug Rehab
When it comes to finding the right type of treatment program, there are so many different options and different terms that get thrown around that it may become confusing to some. Most people only want to find the best possible program for those they care about. Within many of the different options available, there is a huge variation in resources, costs and quality. By looking at some of the most important terms to look for, it may help you get a better understanding of the entire process.

Inpatient Care

This refers to patients living inside of the facility 24 hours a day. They do not go home and will meet with counselors within the facility. The benefit of this is that there is no outside influence, there are little to no distractions and it provides people with a schedule to ensure that they are not bored. This has long been the preferred method of treatment, though also more expensive. Studies have shown that this type of recovery program is more beneficial when it comes to long-term success.

Holistic Treatment

This is one of the newer, but increasingly popular methods of treatment. A holistic treatment method suggests that it is undesirable to look at addiction as a single problem. Instead, a holistic approach means that the program treats the person as a whole. This new approach treats addiction as a long-term problem rather than an acute one. This means getting to the underlying causes as to why someone may have turned to drug use in the first place.

Alternative Drug Rehabilitation

People may also refer to this as ‘non-12 step drug rehab’. The truth is that while the original twelve steps were a noble attempt at trying to help people recover from addiction, they have become hopelessly outdated over the last few decades. We now have such treatment methods as ‘biophysical detoxification’, which helps rid the body of the remaining toxic molecules in our system. We have a far better understanding of what addiction is and what it is not than ever before. While ‘alternative’ may appear New Age or experimental, it means that the treatment methods differ from what has been the norm. Many of these approaches have a far greater success rate than the traditional methods.

Aftercare Services

This is different from an outpatient treatment program. Aftercare services are in place to help patients who are adjusting to being on their own after being in a residential treatment program. Sometimes these patients in recovery may struggle with the added responsibilities and emotions – this can make it challenging to maintain sobriety. These aftercare services not only provide a place where these patients can talk to qualified personnel, but it also provides a crutch to lean on in the event that things become difficult. Research shows that programs that have these aftercare services available have a higher chance of success.

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5 Most Common Excuses for Not Going to Rehab

Tuesday, Jan. 28th 2014

Excuses Used to Avoid Going into Rehab
Going into drug or alcohol rehabilitation may seem intimidating. Especially if someone has been struggling with dependence for such a long time that it has become ‘normal’ for them. Addressing issues that have been unresolved for a long time and changing one’s lifestyle may seem overwhelming. Some people will make excuses to prevent or delay seeking recovery treatment. These are some of the most common excuses provided.

“I do not need it – I could stop if I wanted to

Denial is a major factor in dependence. Many people struggling with long-term addiction use this common defense mechanism. They may even start to believe it themselves. The truth is that for most people struggling with dependence, they are no longer in control. It is not about not wanting to quit, it is about not being able to quit.

“I have done treatment before – it does not work for me

Someone may have tried the traditional 12-steps before, went to five meetings, and relapsed shortly after that. There are many reasons that previous attempts at recovery are unsuccessful. Perhaps the person does not change their overall behavior, perhaps they were not ready to make a change, or perhaps they continue to hang out with the same people as before. If a doctor cannot cure a patient on the first try, it is not as though they would simply give up – they try a second time – perhaps with a different approach. Remember that rehabilitation requires constant effort.

“I cannot go – people would miss me / I’m needed here

It is true that some people may rely on the person for financial support or they would simply miss them if they were gone for three months in a row attending long-term inpatient rehabilitation. However, if given the chance, most people would prefer to have the person back that they knew before the drug use. Many interpersonal relationships are destroyed because of continual dependence.

“Rehab is too expensive

It is true that quality rehabilitation programs are not free – we are not going to insult anyone by suggesting that they are. However, if you look at the days of work lost after recovering from use, the actual cost of the illicit substances purchased, and the years of life lost because of addiction, treatment begins to look like a bargain. Once you are actively looking for different programs, it is also possible to see whether they will work on a sliding scale payment plan or paying by an installment plan.

“If I go to rehab I will lose my friends

Someone struggling with addiction is likely to associate closely with likeminded people. This means people who share the same or similar dependence. It may be a valid argument that people are afraid of not having anyone there for them when they recover. However, when looking at it objectively, it should be clear that those ‘friends of convenience’ are not people who are a healthy or smart choice to hang around with in the long run.

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5 Behaviors that Could Develop into an Addiction

Saturday, Jan. 25th 2014

Actions that Can Quickly Turn into a Drug Addiction

Despite what the 12-step treatment may tell people, there is no such thing as a ‘natural or an eternal addict’. The truth is that there are a few simple behaviors that you can change today that might help you reduce the chances of developing drug or alcohol addiction later in life.

 

Experimenting with Drugs

While this is a simplification of the problem, you cannot become addicted to drugs or alcohol if you do not use them. However, the “just say no” approach does not always work, because people use because they are in physical or emotional pain, are bored, or just curious about the effects. However, you can use your energy to find healthier ways to deal with those particular problems. If someone does not use, they cannot become addicted – simple as that.

Hanging Around People Who Use

Studies have shown that surrounding yourself with people who feel that using illicit substances is acceptable increases the likelihood of dependence. Even if someone has strong decision-making skills and strong personal values, it would be a mistake to assume that this would make them immune to peer pressure. Hanging around people who use regularly also provides easier access to illicit substances.

Isolating Yourself

One of the basic human needs is to feel socially connected. We want others to witness our lives in happier times and support us during challenging times. Being isolated from others not only reduces a person’s overall satisfaction with life, but also puts them at greater risk of addiction. People may lack a sense of purpose in life or simply be bored. When someone isolates themselves, it also means that there is no social control to let them know their dependence is becoming problematic. While it is not necessary to be a social butterfly, pure isolation does increase the risk of dependence.

Looking for a Quick Fix

Sure, you could try to unwind and let stress go – but why? There is a pill to help you unwind and sleep. It would be healthier to eat healthy foods to reduce your cholesterol – but why? There is a pill to help you reduce your cholesterol. We have become accustomed to fixing things quickly. That is the reason behind dependence as well. Instead of considering non-drug alternatives and getting to the underlying cause of their discomfort, it is easier for someone to use drugs, once again, for immediate gratification. While the harder path might not always be easier, it is certainly healthier.

Ignoring Feelings and Emotions

If someone experiences feelings of disappointment, anger or sadness, ignoring them and hoping that those feelings will disappear on their own may lead to them seeking some type of escape from what they are experiencing. For someone it may be illicit substances, for others it will be sex, food, gambling, shopping, whatever helps them self-medicate and not have to deal with their emotions. The problem is that all of these solutions only provide short-term relief. This means that they have to repeat it in order to feel relieved again. The continued repetition of a coping mechanism may lead to the development of dependence.

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Children with Drug Addiction: 4 Truths Parents Must Face

Wednesday, Jan. 22nd 2014

Facts of Drug Addicted Children
Parents want their children to have the best, to have a good future and to live long, successful lives. For parents it can be extremely difficult and disheartening to see children choose their own path and struggle with drug or alcohol addiction. Some parents may ask themselves where they went wrong or what they could have done differently. However, before parents start blaming themselves, it is important to recognize these four truths. Once they do so, it may be easier for them to help their children back on the right track.

Truth #1 – You are Not Able to Fix Everything

Remember that grownups make their own choices and have to find their own ways to deal with problems. While it may be human nature to want to ‘swoop in’ and save the day, perhaps pay off the loan they took out or lie to their boss about their absence, remember that this does nothing for an eventual recovery. In fact, helping every time that he or she struggles with the consequences of his or her drug or alcohol abuse is detrimental. It sends the wrong message; it shows that there are no consequences for their actions, and thus no reason to change.

Truth #2 – This is Not Something You Can Do Alone

While we may expect parents to be good at many things, helping in addiction recovery is not one of the things that parents innately know how to do. If someone is dealing with long-term addiction, it is important to get them enrolled into a long-term addiction treatment program that has a team of addiction specialists. This is not just about ‘hiding’ the drugs or grounding someone until they are sober – it is about changing the long-term approach when it comes to dealing with setbacks in life. It is about making better choices for the future.

Truth #3 – You Cannot Force Someone to Get Help

Once you have a child that is over the age of 18 and not court ordered to attend treatment, your son or daughter can continue to use and abuse illicit substances for as long as they please. You can beg and plead, but it may not be enough to get them to enroll into a recovery program. In those situations, it is important that parents let their children know that there are consequences to refusing drug rehabilitation. While it may seem harsh to kick them out of your home or to stop supporting them financially, remember that it might be the only way to force someone to understand that their substance abuse has consequences.

Truth #4 – Blaming Oneself is Not Going to Help

Parents are often quick to blame themselves. They wonder if different opportunities, more financial assistance, or further sacrifices would have made a difference. The truth is that abusing drugs or alcohol is a personal choice. There may be different reasons that someone begins to use; stress, boredom, peer pressure or any number of other reasons. While it may be a good idea to evaluate your own behavior in relation to drugs and alcohol, blaming yourself will do nothing to help your child now.

Though it may be difficult to deal with a child’s addiction, there is hope. You can help your child and the entire family to heal by no longer enabling the abuse and facing these four truths.

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Doctor Shopping – Big Problem for Police and Doctors

Thursday, Jan. 16th 2014

Doctor Shopping to Feed an Addiction
Many of us look for the best possible deal on clothing, food and shoes – “shopping” may mean going in and out of different stores to see where you can get the best deal. However, many people struggling with prescription drug addiction are doing a different type of “shopping” – doctor shopping. Over the last few years, the number of deaths attributed to prescription drug overdoses has increased dramatically. Many of the 36,000 people who died because of drug overdoses in 2008 across the nation passed away because of the misuse of prescription medications.

Most people know that prescription medication oftentimes comes with a number of side effects and may even be dangerous. So how is it possible that this many people are having issues with medication that is provided by a pharmacy and recommended by a physician? The answer here is once again – doctor shopping.

What is Doctor Shopping?

Doctor shopping means that the same patient is going to a number of different physicians with the same purpose: to procure prescription drugs illicitly or to continue abusing medication for a continuing illness. Depending on the literature, the definition of “doctor shopping” may change somewhat, but the constant is that these patients are seeking out more than the recommended amount of medication, often opioid painkillers.

If people build up a tolerance to a certain substance, they need to ingest more of the same substance in order to get the same desired results that they experienced before. However, a physician is only going to prescribe a specific limit when it comes to medication – especially the type of medication that may lead to dependency. In order to get the substances they want without arousing suspicion, this means that the user may visit several doctors in order to get a new prescription or they will try to fill the same prescription in several different pharmacies.

How Prevalent is Doctor Shopping?

When looking at the different studies that discuss doctor shopping, it is important to understand that dependent on the study methodology (most importantly, the definition of what doctor shopping means) the rates in differing studies can range anywhere from 6.3 percent to 56 percent. It is important to understand that these percentages are moderated, at least partially, by the study setting, the characteristics of the patient sample, and/or the investigators’ definition of doctor shopping. However, even in low estimates, researchers still find that people who actively engage in doctor shopping filled an estimated 4.3 million prescriptions for opioid drugs such as Vicodin and OxyContin in 2008.

Why Do Patients Engage in Doctor Shopping?

While much of the existing literature discusses the problem in different ways, it is possible to divide the patient justifications for this behavior into two general categories: patient-related factors and physician-related factors.

  1. Patient-related factors, psychological dependence – We can attribute a large percentage of this issue to substance misuse/abuse. Visiting several different doctors has long been an illicit method of acquiring opioid painkillers and other medications. A Norwegian study highlighted the relationship between the prescription of addictive drugs and the number of physicians consulted. The study found that those who were prescribed addictive medications were 9.5 times more likely to engage in this behavior than those who received non-addictive medication. The prescription drugs most associated with doctor shopping were benzodiazepines (4.2 percent) and opioids (12.8 percent).
  2. Patient-related factors, illness variables – Dependence is not the sole reason that patients doctor-shop. Studies determined that we might attribute this to the patient seeing no improvement in the illness and/or having a lack of understanding of either the offered diagnosis or the treatment.
  3. Physician-related factors – Despite many of the articles focusing on the patient factors that go into the development of this issue, a number of studies examined specific physician factors. Some of the factors that may contribute to a patient’s likelihood in seeking out other physicians included extended waiting times and physician attitude (if the physician was particularly strict, stern or stringent). Other physician factors included insufficient time for communication between the physician and the patient, undesirable personal qualities of the physician and inconvenient office hours or locations.

 

What Can We Do to Stop this?

Numerous states are using drug-monitoring programs in order to make it harder for patients to visit a number of different physicians. Studies already show that we can decrease the prevalence of doctor shopping by introducing these statewide monitoring programs. However, many regulators are calling for a nation-wide program instead of just having a state-by-state program. Depending on the location, a federal program would be highly beneficial.

For example, someone in California may drive six hours and still be in the same state. Meanwhile, someone in the New England area can hit several different states within the same amount of time. This would render the entire statewide program useless unless clinics decided to fill prescriptions for state residents exclusively.

Many physicians also readily admit that while in medical school, they receive no real education about addiction. While it is true that physicians need to keep a watchful eye and not simply give patients anything they want, we also have to understand that these are not trained DEA agents.

These physicians have to straddle the fine line between wanting to help someone who comes into their office and actively helping them foster dependence. They also do not want to alienate current patients or stigmatize people who use commonly abused medications for genuine medical problems.

Tackling the Issue at the Root

Because doctor shopping is a relatively complex phenomenon and we are still a long way off from a federal database, treating the problem at the core may be the only way to treat the issue at this point. Whereas someone doctor shopping for monetary gain may continue to do so until they are prevented from doing so, patients struggling with addiction can get help to live a sober lifestyle. If you know someone or you yourself are struggling with dependence on prescription medication, make sure that you seek out professional drug recovery treatment as soon as possible.

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The Prescription Pain Reliever Epidemic – Who’s to Blame?

Friday, Jan. 10th 2014

photodune-1162451-white-bottle-and-pills-xs
According to Steven Tyler, singer of Aerosmith, doctors are to blame and equivalent to drug dealers when it comes to overcoming struggles with dependence. While Mr. Tyler does make some claims that make his statement a bit dubious (he readily admits that he did not stick to the recommended daily dosage), it does offer up interesting conversation – who is to blame for the recent increase in prescription painkiller abuse and the associated fatal overdoses?

A Problem on the Rise

It is obvious that prescription pain medication has grown beyond a simple problem. In fact, we can now officially label it as a crisis. Over the last two decades, the number of fatal unintentional drug overdoses in the United States has increased by more than 500 percent. The majority of these fatal overdoses are attributed to prescription painkillers. According to the statistics, the number of deaths because of prescription pain medication is now higher than the number of deaths related to cocaine and heroin abuse combined.

Perhaps even more problematic is the fact that we cannot trace most of these pills back to the ‘pill mills’ or to Mexico, but rather to doctors who prescribe them to patients struggling with pain. Well-trained doctors and conscientious physicians are (partly) to blame for the increased number of deaths attributed to these pain relievers.

How We Ended Up Where We are Now

The backstory is relatively straightforward, the medical community recognized as early as the 1980s and 1990s that patients who struggled with pain often did not receive the type of treatment they needed. The scientific term for the undertreatment of pain is oligoanalgesia – and this issue (rightly) concerned many people who were involved in day-to-day patient treatments. Studies suggested that if doctors did identify pain properly, they often did not treat it properly or even ask about it again. Perhaps even worse was the fact that affluent white patients traditionally received better pain treatment than patients who were minorities or a lower socio-economic class.

Understandably, medical professionals made a major effort in order to redress this oversight. Doctors were told to consider patients’ pain severity, to treat it almost as though it was a “fifth vital sign” that was previously overlooked, on the same page as body temperature and blood pressure. The next step was that both medical trainees and medical students were informed that when prescribed for legitimate pain, there was no possible way that a patient would ever become dependent on their medication. Finally, opioid pain medications such as hydrocodone (the active ingredient in Lortabs and Vicodin) and oxycodone (the active ingredient in Percocet) were framed as far safer alternative to NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) such as Vioxx, naproxen, and ibuprofen. These could trigger cardiac conditions and peptic ulcer.

Interestingly enough, the drug companies that were actively producing these opioid medications were the same forces behind the push toward opioids. Even though there were some patient-advocacy groups that clamored for this type of medication, studies found that these groups were often related to the drug company in some way or another.

A Shift that Went Too Far

Unfortunately, because of mainstream acceptance of opioid pain medication and a continued push from the pharmaceutical companies, the shift went entirely too far. The number of opioid narcotics that American physicians prescribed between 1999 to 2010 tripled in number. Unfortunately, children were not immune to this problem either, since the 1990s the number of opioid medications for children has doubled. While this seems excessive by itself, if we consider that across the nation, physicians in 2011 prescribed enough hydrocodone to keep the entire population sedated 24/7 for well over a month, that should put the shift in perspective.

An Increase in Diagnosis

Even though doctors now feel more comfortable than ever when it comes to prescribing these opioid painkillers, they are also more likely than ever before to diagnose patients with chronic-pain syndromes. If we exclude children, the Institute of Medicine estimates that almost one out of every two Americans suffers from chronic pain. Are we suddenly incapable of dealing with physical discomfort, is there something that causes everyone to experience pain, or is there something else going on?

It is difficult to determine exactly what may account for those massive numbers, whether it is attributable to the treatment side or diagnosis side. One thing we do know for sure, chronic pain traditionally starts as acute pain, whether it be because of surgery or injury. In order to combat the acute pain, many patients receive opioid pain relievers, but still experience pain.

Hyperalgesia: One Possible Reason

The reason behind this could be hypersensitivity to new pain caused by those very opioid prescriptions – also known as hyperalgesia. Between hyperalgesia and the body developing a tolerance, many patients often feel that they need more and more of the same narcotic in order to go about their day without pain. If we consider that the higher doses may disturb breathing patterns as the patients sleep and the combination of alcohol or sleeping medications, in addition to the higher doses possibly becoming fatal, we may have a reason that we are seeing an increase in fatal painkiller overdoses.

Adhere to the Medical Guidelines

According to medical guidelines, physicians must not opt for opioid medication for the majority of patients who struggle with chronic pain. However, it is also vitally important that physicians throughout the country no longer give out opioids for acute pain. Especially because acute pain may eventually develop into chronic pain.

Some people suggest that a solution is impossible, but this is untrue. A high dose of acetaminophen (like Tylenol) or ibuprofen (like Motrin or Advil) is proven to work as well as these prescription opioids, even for serious pain conditions such as gallstone attacks. In the event that these opioids are “necessary” for patients, it is important that they come with a massive warning that clearly states that even in short-term use, these drugs are highly addictive. It is important that doctors get away from the pressure from pharmaceutical companies and patient-satisfaction surveys and discuss patient pain honestly without pressure. Even though it may take a little longer per doctor visit, it is the only way that we are going to see a shift that will end up saving lives.

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Who’s Responsible for Prescription Painkiller Addiction?

Tuesday, Jan. 7th 2014

Bottle of Medicine

Prescription opioid pain relievers kill more Americans every year than cocaine and heroin combined. Is there something or someone responsible for these deaths? The truth is that while personal responsibility does play a role in most people who struggle with addiction, that does not mean these people only have themselves to blame.

What happens when the people that we trust most with our health are the same people who are actively satiating the market with these substances? When it comes to prescription painkillers, it can be argued that healthcare professionals play an important role in this epidemic.

Why the ‘War on Pain’ had Horrible Consequences

When you look at the aforementioned statistics, it is obvious that there is a spike in the number of fatal overdoses. The reason behind that is simple, between the late 1990s and early 2000s, doctors took a different approach to treating pain.

In fact, some research studies (later found to be sponsored by the very same pharmaceutical companies they claimed to be investigating), suggested that methadone, morphine, hydrocodone and all other opioids had virtually no maximum dosages and a minimal risk for dependence  under doctor supervision. According to the research conclusion, patients could simply use these opioids forever and never reach a point where they became satiated.

Those Conclusions were Dead Wrong

Countless patients decided to use prescription opioids to treat legitimate medical conditions. These patients found themselves becoming dependent on the substance rather quickly, and this was without injecting or snorting them. This is not to suggest that the abuse of prescription drugs only fall on one particular group, but they are in fact, partly responsible.

Negligence is at the Heart of Malpractice

In fact, doctors quickly became pill dispensaries for their patients. Many patients had no idea that the substance they were taking was, in fact, not as harmless as previously suggested. Once the patient did realize these substances were habit forming, it was often too late to stop cold turkey. Simply put, doctors had a role to play in the development of this epidemic. There was enough pain medication being distributed to sedate the entire population of the country for upwards of three months.

Change Must Start in the Medical Community

If we hope to curb the loose and excessively prescribed opioids, it is important to hold physicians accountable if they do not exercise due diligence to prevent drug-seeking behavior and if they do not actively monitor patients. These opioids are dangerous and because the medical community is distributing them, it is at the very least, partly their responsibility to curb their use.

This is not to suggest that we should let people suffer from pain or that we should try to ban these substances altogether. However, it is important that doctors play an active role in treating the patient rather than prescribe medication to manage the pain. By exploring alternative pain relief treatments, whether these range from non-euphoric pain relief to physical therapy, it is possible to create an interactive process between the doctor and the patient. This allows them to stay up-to-date with patient progress and will not have the same risk of crippling dependence.

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Why Relapse Occurs after Drug Recovery

Saturday, Jan. 4th 2014

Stress

Despite their best intentions, many patients in recovery do end up struggling with a relapse during their recovery period. While patients enrolled into long-term drug recovery programs often have a better chance of avoiding relapse, it is important to understand what it is and why it occurs. Why is it that despite their best intentions, many users end up using the very same substance they told themselves they would never touch again?

Why Does it Happen?

It is important to remember that despite the fact that someone might be sober for a prolonged period of time, it does not mean that he or she is no longer tempted. Oftentimes many people struggling with dependence may have lost their job, they might have risked their finances, they might have destroyed friendships – in short, it is a challenging time after they leave a recovery facility.

However, there is a reason that people who enroll into long-term programs have a far better chance of avoiding a possible relapse in the future. The reason behind this is the fact that they have more time to understand why they turned to illicit substances in the first place. Oftentimes a person does not become dependent overnight; there is a reason people are medicating themselves. An individual needs to understand what poor choices they have made in the past and how they can make better choices in the immediate and distant future. This is one of the many reasons more and more addiction professionals are calling for longer treatment in order to help patients make these changes.

What Might Increase the Likelihood of Relapse?

Many factors could increase the risk of the patients reverting to old behavior. Some of the common factors include:

  1. Stressful situations – If the person recovering has not learned how to handle negative moods or stressful situations in a new, positive way, they might cover up their emotions by turning to their drug of choice. This is one of the many reasons that long-term professional help or guidance also leads to long-term success.
  2. Celebration – Contrary to what people think, a relapse does not have to occur because the user is depressed, angry, or sad. They might have celebrated birthdays, holidays, or special events (such as a sports team winning a game) with celebratory drug or alcohol use. These events may trigger cravings in the future.
  3. Related cues – The life of someone struggling with dependence is often systematic: try to find money to buy the drug of choice, procure it, use it, recover from it and repeat the cycle all over again. Because of that, certain smells, sounds, sights or places might remind them of previous use. These can possibly lead to extremely strong cravings.
  4. Failing to stick to recommendations – It is important to understand that dependence does not have a clearly defined ‘end’. Just because the patient completed a three-month inpatient drug treatment does not mean that he or she can suddenly do whatever they want. This also includes attending follow-up counseling and making healthy changes in his or her life. Without that, they risk falling back onto old patterns.
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How Food Choices Can Make a Difference in Drug Recovery

Wednesday, Jan. 1st 2014

Healthy food

Oftentimes people focus on healing the mind when treating drug or alcohol addiction. However, while mental health is one very important aspect, we also need to consider the physical. This goes beyond recovering from the negative side effects of drug or alcohol abuse, but includes a holistic (encompassing) treatment method.

Food Choices Do Matter a Great Deal

Food can play an important role in how someone feels. Healthy alternatives may give someone more energy and help them feel healthier. Meanwhile, poor dietary choices may even reduce the production of dopamine and have a negative impact on our mood. What are some of the most important foods to avoid during recovery?

  1. Caffeine – It does not matter if you consume caffeine in packaged goods, chocolate, tea, coffee, energy drinks or soda. When ingested in high doses, caffeine can trigger our stress response. This dumps insulin into the bloodstream and ensures that our body wants to ingest sugar. This leads to people binging and suffering cravings all day. Because caffeine can affect our mood throughout the day, it may lead to a less balanced and less calm mood. Emotional rollercoasters are not positive for patients in recovery.
  2. Sugar – In any form, sugar may lead to digestive issues, mood swings, cravings and blood sugar swings.
  3. Packaged foods – it is important to note that these are full of MSG, chemicals and other additives. Someone in recovery wants to try to ingest as few additional chemicals as possible to allow the body to rebalance itself. This allows the body to expel all the toxic particles that remain after long-term drug and alcohol use.
  4. Fast food – Similar to packaged foods, these are full of sodium, chemicals, sugar, and other ingredients that do not do our body any good. While it is understandable that people do not always want to cook for themselves, it is important to keep the fast food intake to a minimum.

You Can Do Your Own Experiment

It is possible for anyone to try his or her own experiment, even those who are not actively recovering from substance abuse. Replace processed foods, packaged foods and caffeine with fresh water, home-cooked meals and whole grains for a few days and see how it makes a difference. The healthier we eat, the less taxed our body becomes. This means that are blood sugar is stable, which means fewer mood swings and less energy fluctuations.

This is one of the factors behind the rise in popularity of holistic treatment facilities. We have to understand that our body goes through a lot when people are struggling with dependence. In essence, the substances that people struggling with addiction ingest are poison; which means that the body is continuously working hard to filter these out of the body as best it can. Focusing on healthier food options is not going to help someone overcome addiction overnight, but it is important to take an all-inclusive approach when trying to treat someone.

 

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