Thursday, July 12, 2018

One Less Excuse to Quit Smoking

weight gain after smokingIf a fear of weight gain is keeping your from kicking your nicotine habit, you may no longer have an excuse. A new study of 4,700 postmenopausal female smokers found that even a little bit of exercise can help keep pounds at bay.

Being active after quitting smoking was found to reduce weight gain, regardless of the amount of physical activity before quitting," Dr. JoAnn Pinkerton, executive director of the North American Menopause Society, said in a society news release.

Participants who exercised more (150 minutes of moderate intensity per week) and watched their diet had the best results, yet even low-intensity exercise (walking 90 minutes per week at 3 miles an hour) did the trick. The study shows that there’s real "hope for those deciding to quit smoking — exercise more and watch food intake to limit weight gain," Pinkerton said. 

Need some motivation for sticking to your exercise routine? Here are some tips adapted from the American Heart Association to help make physical activity part of your daily recovery plan. 
  • Be consistent. Do your best to exercise at the same time of the day. This way, it will become a regular part of your routine and lifestyle. For example, you might begin by walking every Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 7:00 am to 7:30 am.
  • Add variety. Develop a repertoire of several activities that you can enjoy, so you don’t get bored.
  • Recruit an exercise buddy. Asking a family member or friend to join you will help keep you more accountable.  
  • Track and celebrate your successes. Keep a record of your progress and reward yourself at special milestones. Note: Keep the rewards healthy like a new workout top or tickets to a movie. 
Exercise to Support Your Sobriety 
At Rising Roads Recovery, we understand that fighting addiction is more than simply giving up drugs and alcohol. It’s also about creating a new sober lifestyle that supports your health holistically. That’s why we offer a wide variety of fitness classes, including boot camps, yoga and more to help with stress relief and strengthen your body during addiction recovery. To discover more about our addiction treatment for women, call today: 866-746-1558.

Thursday, July 5, 2018

Why You Should Add Summer Reading to Your Recovery To-dos

With summer often comes more time on your hands, and so filling that time with healthy and sober activities becomes key. Reading is a great activity to add to your summer recovery routine – and it certainly can’t hurt your overall mental health to curl up on the beach or under a shady tree with a good book! 

We’ve talked about the health benefits of reading in the past. To recap, reading can empower you to stay sober. It strengthens your brain, provides a healthy escape and stress release and reinforces the fact that you’re not alone in your struggle. Reading prior to bed can also help you fall asleep and stay asleep. What’s more, reading can help you learn more about yourself and your addiction and give you hope for the future. 

So what should you read? Summer is high season for gripping non-fiction, self-help books and juicy fictions. Just consider your stage of recovery and emotional state prior to choosing a tome. For example, you might be too fragile in your recovery to read real-life stories about addiction; the details could even elicit cravings. And it’s also wise to talk with your addiction counselor prior to choosing a book about addiction treatment. You’ll want someone to vet the information to ensure it meshes with your recovery goals. Talk to your peers, counselors and family members for some good book recommendations. 

You may even consider starting a book club with five to 10 of your recovery friends. Figure out the best time to meet and how often (once a month, for example) and then pick a convenient location. Together, you can make it your mission to tear through your list of summer reads by Labor Day! 

Growing Stronger Together This Summer 
At Rising Roads, we believe that lasting sobriety requires you to have a life you're not willing to give up. We want our clients’ surroundings and peers to be her warm sun so the process is more pleasant. To learn more about our gender-specific treatment, call today: 866-746-1558.

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Sober Fun in the Sun

Summer is here and it’s time to make some sober memories! Here are a few fun activities that can help you do just that – and they’ll also double-duty to help strengthen your recovery. 
  • Try something new. With its longer days, summer is the ideal season to gain a new skill – either by taking a class or teaching yourself. Take a yoga class, experiment with some new healthy recipes or test your hand at drawing or painting. The sky’s the limit!  
  • Make time to read. Not only is reading a great relaxation strategy (especially reading on the beach!), but it can also help with sleep, focus and even motivation if you pick a story about an inspirational character that met a challenging goal or overcame adversity. You can even turn it into a social experience. Join or start a book club with some friends in recovery and discuss your favorite summertime reads. 
  • Sweat it out. Exercise is a must-do activity for all seasons. It will help release “feel good” chemicals to the brain and body and it’s also a great way to stay social. Recruit an exercise buddy or join an informal biking or running club. Or, just spend some alone time exploring the summer scenery by hiking or taking a walk on the beach. 
  • Get crafty. Taking some time to explore your artistic side this summer. Some ideas: scrapbooking, journaling, painting, photography, sewing or check out Pinterest for a fun DIY summer craft. 
  • Enjoy the outdoors. Summer is the perfect time for outdoor movies, concerts and festivals. Just be sure to make sure that you choose wisely. Some events can be dangerous for those in recovery because of the presence of alcohol or drugs. Ask a trusted friend or family member to go with you or organize an outing with a group of sober folks so you can hold each other accountable. 
  • Explore local recovery groups. If you have a little extra leisure time this summer season, use it to meet others in the recovery community. Making new friends and hearing similar stories will help you feel less isolated and more motivated to stick with your sobriety this summer and beyond! 
Wishing you a season of sober fun in the sun! 

Summertime at Rising Roads Recovery
Make summer the season you decide to embark on a path toward lasting sobriety. At Rising Roads, we offer our female clients a variety of addiction treatment programs that support their recovery and nurture their mind, body and soul. To learn more about how we can help you or someone you love – call us toll-free today: 866-746-1558.

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 “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 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 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.