Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Common Stumbling Blocks of Recovery

stumbling blocksWe don’t have to tell you that recovery is a long journey with ups and downs and lots of stumbling blocks along the way. Knowing what to expect can help you stay the sober path and better handle any challenges that come your way. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) outlined some common stumbling blocks for people in recovery – along with some tips to overcome them. Take a look: 

Your appearance. During recovery, your outward appearance tends to improve quicker than your ability to stay sober. SAMHSA calls this the “looking good” trap and says, if you’re not careful, it can cause you to begin to doubt that you have a substance use disorder. Don't let the mirror fool you, warns SAMHSA.

Your thinking patterns. A big part of staying sober is using healthy thinking to prevent yourself from romanticizing your past life and controlling cravings, which don’t go away quickly. If you find yourself spiraling into unhealthy thought patterns, stop and remind yourself of the pain that addiction caused you and review the positive things in your life that have occurred since you decided to get sober. A few more tips from SAMHSA:
  • Don’t talk about the fun of substance use. Ask your friends to interrupt you when this happens. 
  • Don’t listen when others talk about the fun of use. Change the subject or walk away for a moment.
  • Attend a support group and listen to other’s stories to be reminded how sneaky addiction is.
Your triggers and cravings. It’s not unusual for a craving to suddenly come back after three or six months and then quickly fade to a low level again, notes SAMHSA. Even without cravings, triggers abound so you need to be prepared by knowing the people, places and things that could cause you to relapse. 

Your emotions. Depression, anxiety, anger and loneliness – these emotions can interfere with your recovery if you don’t get help. Take care of your mental health by practicing relaxation techniques and seeking support from friends and loved ones as well as a trained professional. 

Your paycheck. Money can be a trigger, so it’s important to make a plan so you pay your bills and avoid buying drugs and/or alcohol. A few tips: 
  • Arrange for direct deposit of your paycheck, if possible.
  • Take a friend or family member with you when you go shopping.
  • Plan ways to avoid dealers and other users who might come looking for you after payday. 
Ask About Our Post-Relapse Care
Rising Roads Recovery wants to help you educate yourself on your very own patterns. Addiction is a chronic disease and a previous relapse does not mean failure – nor is relapse necessary for long-term recovery. Just like everyone’s recovery plan looks different, so does everyone’s relapse avoidance plan. You have a unique history that needs to be accounted for in your plan. And we’re here to help; we’re here to plan, support, and love. To learn more, call today: 866-746-1558.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Women and PTSD

In honor of National PTSD Awareness Month this June, we’re taking a look at how PTSD can impact women. According to the National Center for PTSD, women are more than twice as likely to develop PTSD than men; women have a 10 percent risk while men have a 4 percent risk. And women with past mental health issues (like depression or anxiety) and lack of social support may be even more at risk for PTSD.

This perhaps isn’t too surprising considering that findings from a large national mental health study show that a little more than half of all women will experience at least one traumatic event in their life. And this includes sexual assault, which is more likely to cause PTSD than many other events, according to the National Center for PTSD. What’s more, women may be more likely to blame themselves for trauma experiences than men. 

The symptoms of PTSD are also often different for women versus men. Women, for example, are more likely to feel jumpy or depressed and anxious while men may feel angry and have trouble controlling their anger.

Untreated PTSD symptoms can have a negative impact on mental health and also lead to physical symptoms like headaches, gastrointestinal problems and sexual dysfunction. Many women with PTSD also turn to drugs or alcohol as a way to self-medicate. In fact, addiction and PTSD often overlap, with nearly 50 percent of people with PTSD also meeting the criteria for substance use disorder.

Trauma Resolution at Rising Roads
If you’re looking for a safe, non-judgmental place to address your addiction in relation to your trauma, look no further. By using proven techniques like Psychodrama, Art and Somatic Therapy, we help clients stop running from their emotions and feelings and start healing. To learn more about our Trauma Treatment for women, call today: 866-746-1558. 






Thursday, June 7, 2018

Why Are More Women Than Ever Addicted to Alcohol

women and alcohol use disorderIt’s not news that alcohol use disorder is on the rise among women, with the rate of female alcohol abuse and dependence in the United States increasing 83.7 percent between 2002 and 2013, according to a major study by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA). But what’s causing this increase? Why are women drinking more? And why should we be so worried?

“Some of the data we’re seeing indicates historic increases in consumption and alcohol problems,” Katherine Keyes, an associate professor of epidemiology at Columbia University, told Prevention.com. “The trajectory for female alcohol abuse now outpaces that of men. When we see these steep increases, you wonder if we are going to see a larger burden of disease for women.”

And for good reason: High-risk drinking—more than three drinks on a given day or more than seven per week, according to NIAAA—is linked to some 200 diseases, including cancers and psychiatric disorders. And, in general, women are hit harder than men when it comes to these adverse health effects. 

As far as why women are drinking more, the article on Prevention.com had some interesting findings. Here’s a quick recap: 


  • More alcohol companies are marketing to women. From Skinnygirl to Mommy Juice, more and more brands are targeting their spirits to women buyers.
  • Women feel pressure to fit in and crave camaraderie: Bar hopping or “Martini nights” with the girls have become more and more socially accepted. These nights “built-around a bottle” are also how many women are connecting to one another today.
  • Women are more stressed over work-life balance: More women hit the bottle in an effort to quell anxiety over the increasingly difficult work-life balance, according to Prevention.com. And this isn’t too surprising considering that women of working age work longer hours and are unhappier today than their mothers were 40 years ago. 
  • Women are trying to cope with mental illness. Whether depression or anxiety or empty nest syndrome, many women are struggling with emotional issues and using alcohol as a means to self-medicate or escape negative feelings. 


  • Help for Women With Alcohol Use Disorder 
    While there’s a growing pressure to drink, problem drinking is still stigmatized. But greater awareness and efforts to seek treatment can help remedy this. If you’re concerned about your drinking and want help, or want to learn more about our rehab services for women, call today: 866-746-1558. 







    Wednesday, May 23, 2018

    What Does Anxiety Have to Do With Bones?

    anxiety and bone healthIf you suffer from a substance use disorder and anxiety disorder, you may want to pay extra attention to your bone health. 

    New research found that highly anxious women had higher risks for low bone density, breaks and fractures – and lower levels of vitamin D, which is associated with an increased fracture risk. 

    Based on an analysis of nearly 200 postmenopausal Italian women, the findings build upon previous research that links anxiety to an increased risk for heart disease and gastrointestinal problems.

    "Our findings are quite surprising because an association between anxiety levels and bone health was not reported before," said study author Dr. Antonino Catalano.

    So how does anxiety impact bone health? Researchers noted the negative effects of stress hormones on bone status and the fact that anxious women are more likely to engage in unhealthy behaviors like smoking cigarettes or eating a poor diet, which weaken bones. 

    The researchers also noted that an estimated 33 percent of women will suffer from an osteoporosis-related fracture at some point in their lives and 7 percent of the world's population suffers from anxiety disorders.

    More About Women and Anxiety Disorders 
    Did you know that from the time a girl reaches puberty until about age 50, she is twice as likely to have an anxiety disorder than a man, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA). To blame: brain chemistry, hormonal fluctuations, and in general how women cope with stress, say researchers. There’s also evidence that early life adversity, including childhood sexual or physical abuse, predisposes women to anxiety disorders later in life. 

    Help for Addiction and Anxiety
    Are you or someone you love self-medicating to alleviate the symptoms of an anxiety disorder? Rising Roads Recovery is dedicated to helping women who are struggling with alcohol use disorder and/or a co-occurring mental disorder. Our treatment center was created to inspire women to thrive in recovery. To learn more, call today: 866-746-1558.


    Wednesday, May 16, 2018

    Must-Have Health Screenings For Women

    Not to put something else on your long list of recovery to-dos, but part of living a sober life is living a healthy life – and that means taking care to schedule a few exams that are essential to a woman’s health. Take a look at the list below and make it a short-term goal to get these screenings: 
    • Cholesterol: If you're 20 or older, the National Institutes of Health recommends having your cholesterol measured at least once every five years. If you're at risk for heart disease or stroke, you may need to be tested more frequently. Ask your healthcare provider.
    • Pap smears: The U.S. Preventative Services Task Force ( USPSTF) recommends screening for cervical cancer in women age 21 to 65 years with Pap smear every 3 years or, for women age 30 to 65 years who want to lengthen the screening interval, screening with a combination of cytology and human papillomavirus (HPV) testing every 5 years. 
    • Mammograms: There is much discussion about when and how often women should have a mammogram, which screens for breast cancer. The USPSTF recommends that women age 50 to 74 have a mammogram every two years. The American Cancer Society, however, suggests that women get annual screenings at age 45, and a biannual mammogram at age 55. If you have a family history of breast cancer, or other risk factors, talk to your healthcare professional.
    • Bone density screening: Women should start getting screened for osteoporosis with a bone density test at age 65. Those with risk factors for osteoporosis should be screened earlier. Again, talk to your doctor about what’s right for you since certain abused substances, including alcohol and opioids, are study-proven to reduce bone density. 
    • Blood glucose tests: Starting around age 45, women should get a blood glucose test every three years to check for diabetes or prediabetes. Alcohol abuse can lower the body’s sensitivity to insulin, which can up your chances of developing type 2 diabetes, however, so talk to your doctor about the best plan for you. 
    • Dental checkup: Addiction can wreak havoc on your oral health so it’s a good habit to make good dental health part of your recovery. All adult women need twice-yearly dental checkups, which include cleaning and examining the teeth, along with X-rays to spot early signs of decay and any other problems.
    Take Back Your Health
    At Rising Roads, our staff is here to help women put their physical and mental health first. To learn more about our psychiatric consultations and addiction treatment services, call us today: 866-746-1558.

    Thursday, May 10, 2018

    Unexpected Perks of Post-Rehab for Moms 

    mom
    Being a mom is hard and being a mom while trying to stay sober is even harder. Yet even your most challenging day parenting while sober is likely a hundred times better than parenting while abusing alcohol or drugs. For one, being sober means being present in your child’s life – so you can pat yourself on the back for that. What’ s more, what you’ve learned in rehab – lessons like self-care, anger management, time management, stress management, communication – will help you to be a better you and a better mom. 

    Read on for some more unexpected perks of post-rehab for moms:
    • More quality time. Whether in the form of a family dinner or potluck get-together, spending time with loved ones will take on a whole new importance once you’re sober. 
    • New hobbies and interests. Now that you’re in recovery and no longer spend hours using or thinking about using, you’ll have extra time to reignite your passions and participate in activities you loved prior to your addiction. Or, you may choose to use your newly found time to test your hand at new interests and/or hobbies. 
    • Increased energy. Especially if diet and exercise is a part of your overall recovery plan, you’ll likely notice that you have a lot more energy now – energy well spent playing and spending time with your kids.
    • Greater appreciation. Many moms find greater meaning in everyday simple activities post-rehab – whether reading a bedtime story to your child or doing homework together. After all, another valuable rehab lesson is learning to live in the moment and find joy in your day to day.
    • Setting a good example. By working to get sober you’ve already taken a giant step toward being a positive role model. And you can take this further by staying sober and using your own experience to teach your child about the dangers of drugs and alcohol.  
    Rehab for Women
    Making the decision to seek help for your own addiction is the best gift you can give to your family. Let us lead the way. To learn more about our rehab services for women, call today: 866-746-1558. 



    Wednesday, May 2, 2018

    May is Mental Health Month

    mental health month
    May is Mental Health Month and it’s the perfect time to check in with yourself to make sure you’re taking good care of your own mental and emotional well-being. 

    This year’s theme, Fitness #4Mind4Body, is designed to educate individuals how eating healthy foods, gut health, managing stress, exercising and getting enough sleep can go a long way in preventing the onset or worsening of mental health conditions.

    As part of the month-long celebration, Mental Health America (MHA) is challenging individuals to make small changes to create big gains for their health and wellbeing. Here are a few to consider:
    • Skip or limit processed, fried and sugary foods. A diet that regularly includes these kinds of foods can increase the risk of developing depression by as much as 60 percent, according to MHA. And, in fact, yet another study showed that 1/3 of participants with depression experienced full relief of their symptoms after improving their diet. 
    • Fit in fitness. Just one hour of exercise a week is related to lower levels of mood, anxiety, and substance use disorders, according to MHA. Try 10 minutes of moderate or vigorous activity at a time, 15 times a week, to reach the recommended amount. 
    • Add prebiotics to your diet. There’s a strong link between mental health problems and gastrointestinal symptoms like heartburn, indigestion, acid reflux, bloating, pain, constipation, and/or diarrhea. This is because anxiety and depression can cause changes in the gut microbiome. Prebiotics are great for the gut and include asparagus, bananas (especially if they aren’t quite ripe), garlic, onions, or jicama, tomatoes, apples, berries and mangos.
    • Make shut-eye a priority. Sleep is fundamental to a healthy mind and body – and, in fact, sleep problems affect 50% to 80% of people under the care of a psychiatrist, compared with 10% to 18% of adults in the general U.S. population, according to MHA. A must-do sleep tip: Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day (including weekends) to keep your body’s natural rhythms running on schedule.
    • Control stress. Learning to manage stress can be a small change with big results on your physical and mental health. Try meditating. Just 10-20 minutes of quiet reflection may ease chronic stress and/or increase your tolerance to it. Listen to music, relax or just think of pleasant things (or nothing at all).

    Take Back Your Mental Health
    Perhaps the best way you can celebrate Mental Health Month is to seek help if you or someone you love is struggling with a co-occurring mental illness and substance use disorder. At Rising Roads, our staff is here to help you take your physical and mental health back. To learn more about our psychiatric consultations, call us today: 866-746-1558.