Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Is Lack of Sleep Interfering With Your Recovery?

lack of sleep
A lack of sleep can cause setbacks in your recovery. Without restorative sleep, it will be that much harder to control your emotions, manage stress, fend off cravings and focus on your daily recovery tasks. Here are a few signs that you need to take better care to prioritize sleep and healthy sleep habits. 
  • You look tired. Bleary, tired bloodshot eyes, dark under eye circles and puffiness are all telltale signs of sleep deprivation. 
  • You have a short fuse. Poor sleep can cause little annoyances to set you off. So if you find yourself lashing out toward others, take it as a cue to get more shut-eye.
  • You are always hungry. Lack of sleep can throw off your hunger hormones leptin and ghrelin. The result: You’ll want to eat all day long and you'll likely crave carbs.  
  • You have trouble focusing. When you’re tired, even the simplest task can seem daunting. You may feel like you have a “fuzzy head” and that it’s more difficult to retain information and follow conversations with others. 
  • You feel more emotional. Sleep deprivation can make you feel like you’re on an emotional roller coaster, causing the slightest feeling of stress to overwhelm you. And these unbalanced emotions may cause you to crave drugs or alcohol, which could lead to relapse.
  • You find daily tasks more difficult. Sleep deprivation impairs what’s called your executive function, which is a set of mental skills that helps you get things done. The result: poor planning and prioritization, disorganization, increased risk taking, greater focus on short-term rewards, decreased judgment.
Healthy Habits for a Healthier You
At Rising Roads, our staff is here to help you take your physical and mental health back and make health living part of your recovery. To learn more about our programs and facility, call today: 866-746-1558.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Making the Most of Music for Your Recovery

The idea that music can have therapeutic value is far from new: Aristotle and Plato touted its benefits, writing that it could help people become better human beings and overcome emotional difficulties. 

More and more treatment facilities are incorporating music therapy or music expression into their programs — and for good reason. Study after study shows that music can influence both emotion and behavior, making people happier, more relaxed, less anxious and less overwhelmed. In particular, relaxing music has ben found to decrease levels of the stress hormone cortisol. 

In addition to formalized music therapy sessions, you can work the power of music into your recovery in simple, everyday ways. Here are some ideas:
  • Meditate to music. Listening to music and exploring your relationship to the music can be a path toward self-discovery. And you can listen to any type of music you choose – it doesn’t have to be spiritual. In fact, research shows that music listening is most healing when you enjoy the music you’re listening to.
  • Have an impromptu dance party. Turn up the volume, turn off your mind and let the music take over as you dance around the room. Dancing is a great stress reliever – you’ll work up a sweat and release those feel-good endorphins.
  • Make a playlist. If you’ve ever created a mix for a significant other – and then a break-up mix when things didn’t work out – then you know that music can help you express a wide-range of emotions. Put together a playlist that will help motivate you on those down days when you need a little extra inspiration. Just be sure to avoid any songs that could cause nostalgia for your former days of using. 
Experiential Therapy
Many women who have “been in therapy for years” continue to feel stuck. Experiential activities, like music expression, can help our female clients communicate thoughts and feelings previously covered up. To learn more about our experiential therapy at Rising Roads, call us today: 866-746-1558. 

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.