Alternative Treatments That Promote Recovery from Addiction

 

Alternative therapies tend to offer a more comprehensive approach dedicated to treating the whole person on mental, emotional, spiritual, and physical levels. With several options to address all those needs, you may improve your chances of recovery.

Neurofeedback and Biofeedback

Biofeedback involves connecting yourself to technology that tracks your heart rate, muscle tension, and skin conductance. You can chart your body’s reactions in real-time and learn self-regulation to make adjustments to stressors and triggers. Neurofeedback, meanwhile, uses an EEG that’s hooked to your head to monitor brain waves in real-time.

Meditation

 Mindful meditation, which yoga and other therapies use, teaches you to regulate your emotional balance by increasing your self-awareness. The practice, which is among many that can help you contribute positively to your recovery, encourages you to live in the moment and learn how to respond more positively to life’s stressors.

Exercise

 As more and more research recognizes the critical importance of exercise to addiction recovery, it’s become an integral part of many treatment programs. Just 30 minutes of exercise each day works as a mood booster, improves stability, heals physical damage resulting from addiction, and promotes a feeling of self-control and accomplishment.

Not sure which exercise to try? Join a gym and take a group class like kickboxing or yoga; find a recreational sports team, like basketball or volleyball; or stream exercise videos on YouTube.

Acupuncture

 This ancient practice, which is rooted in traditional Chinese medicine, uses thin needles placed in specific pressure points on you body. It’s effective for minimizing the effects of withdrawal. Auricular acupuncture targets three to five areas near the ear that correspond to the kidneys, lungs, and liver that often suffer the most damage from drug use.

According to some studies, acupuncture reduces cravings, provides stress and anxiety relief, helps treat depression, and helps manage chronic or acute pain with fewer (if any) medication. It can also improve sleep problems, which often arise in people in addiction recovery.

Animal Therapy

 For some, animal therapy is an effective supplemental treatment. Companion animals help reduce stress and blood pressure and give recovering addicts a responsibility outside of themselves. Pets restore some meaning to your life but, even better, provide no-strings-attached love, comfort, and companionship.

Nutritional Therapy

 People who abuse drugs or alcohol often eat poorly, too, which interferes with their body’s functions. Depending on the substance, some people struggle to get their bodies the nutrition they need. Since substance abuse strains bodies, it’s important to work with a nutritionist to increase the odds of getting and staying healthy and sober. When you work with a nutritionist, you’ll learn about the best foods to incorporate into your diet, including complex carbohydrates that provide long-lasting energy and proteins and fibers that help rebuild muscles.

Healthy, balanced diets repair damage to muscles and organs, improve immune systems, increase energy, and boost moods. A nutritionist or doctor may also recommend vitamins like A, C, B-complex, and zinc, which restore deficiencies and amino acid supplements to help repair neurotransmitters.

Massage

 Detox often results in sore, tense muscles for many months — and whether your body experiences mild or severe pain, massage therapy does wonders. It releases serotonin and dopamine and decreases the stress hormone cortisol. Therapeutic massage works the body’s pressure points connected to the vagus nerve and lowers heart rates and blood pressure. Massage stimulates and triggers the body’s parasympathetic nervous system, which increases circulation and helps remove metabolic waste.

Art Therapy

 Creating art is therapeutic and relaxing. A therapist helps you explore the themes that appear in your art and work toward healing emotional wounds associated with your addiction.

Adventure Therapy

 This active therapy may be a good option if you like to be in motion and find that it’s easier to focus on self-reflection when you’re mobile. Adventure therapy includes challenging activities like hiking, rope courses, and camping.

Some experts urge caution when choosing alternative therapies. Anecdotal evidence, pilot and small studies, individual reports, and clinician observations still comprise the bulk of evidence on these therapies’ efficacy. Still, they have proven in many cases to be effective, complementary supplements to the more traditional treatments.

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  • Guest Post by KIMBERLY HAYES
    (Kimberly Hayes enjoys writing about health and wellness and created PublicHealthAlert.info to help keep the public informed about the latest developments in popular health issues and concerns. In addition to studying to become a crisis intervention counselor, Kimberly is hard at work on her new book, which discusses the ins and outs of alternative addiction treatments.

 

Photo Credit: Pixabay.Com

Of addicts, addiction ….and recovery !

We addicts, are a tortured, oddball cast of characters. As we go through life, living clean a day at a time; It is our constant anxiety about the horrors of a relapse, our memory of its past labours and our dread of its future manifestations, that lays down the rules of how we work towards our recovery and cherish each day clean.

Deep down in our hearts fear stalks us like a predator in a dense forest at night. Fear is omnipresent, like an invisible fume that you do not see but know that it surrounds you. And know, too, that it can ignite in your face. And that fear of a possible relapse eggs us on to do that little bit extra, stretch that extra mile to stay ahead of the predator. We read literature, talk to other recovering addicts, attend recovery meetings, help others stay clean; inter alia.

Those of us who are clean today (and there aren’t that many) have learned to value our recovery and jealously guard ourselves navigating the minefields spread in the path of day to day living. We keep our antennae up all day long, our awareness levels high. We tread gingerly through trouble spots – avoid some altogether. And accept each day that passes as God’s gift to us; a day won. Because all of us, my friend, are living on bonus time. Left to our own devices, we’d have been dead a long time ago.

Don’t hate the addict, hate the disease. Don’t hate the person, hate the behaviour. If it’s hard to watch it, imagine how hard it is to live it.

Herebelow’s a link to Sinead O’Connor’s soulful rendition of a junkie’s journey titled aptly – “Reason with me” from her album “How about I be me (and you be you)?”

 Let’s reason together!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I_zpqpxXoqA

– Ronald D’Silva

Addiction – Deaddiction & Rehabilitation

As addicts, we are people whose use of any kind of mind-altering, mood-changing substance causes a negative impact in every area of our life. Addiction is a disease that involves more than the use of drugs. It is a progressive disease – and an insidious, powerful and overwhelming one at that.

To make matters worse is the “denial” that is an inherent part of the disease.

Most of us did not consider ourselves addicted – as long as we could stop using for a while, we thought we were all right. As our addiction progressed and as things within and around us started getting worser and worser – in desperation we started asking ourselves, “Could it be the drugs?”

As our disease progresses; higher mental and emotional functions, such as conscience and the ability to care and love are sharply affected. Living skills steadily get reduced to the animal level. Our spirit is broken and the capacity to feel human is lost. This may seem extreme, but many of us have been in this state of mind.

We believe that there is nothing shameful about being an addict, provided we accept our dilemma honestly and become willing to take positive action. It sinks in slowly that the drugs have become a problem and some remedial action needs to be taken. The internal conflict we experience as we look behind to see the trail of destruction that has scarred our body, mind and soul – leaves us numb. In some of us the fear, frustration, loneliness, despair and sense of hopelessness drives us into further acts of deprivation. The air around us seems to be seeded with failure and insanity. Cowed down, in sheer hopelessness – we start reaching out for help.

Although the odds are stacked against us, our experience shows that spending time at a rehabilitaion center, learning about the disease of addiction and its debilitating effects on us; working a daily program greatly increases the odds for recovery.

We believe, that it is perfectly “normal” for an addict to think about using or to use drugs. Abstaining from all mood-changing and mind-altering substances is an abnormal state for an addict. But over a period of time of staying clean and enjoying the fruits of recovery, staying clean becomes the “new normal” as life becomes meaningful all over again.

Take that first step – seek help now. Take your body and the mind will eventually follow.

In closing, can’t resist the temptation to cannibalize on Paulo Coelho’s quote – When you desire something with your whole heart, and work whole-heartedly towards achieving it – the entire universe conspires to make it happen !

Don’t waste another day on your addiction

“Our reaction to drugs is what makes us addicts, not how much we use. Our inability to control our usage of drugs is a symptom of the disease of addiction. We are powerless not only over drugs, but over our addiction as well. We need to admit this fact in order to recover. Addiction is a physical, mental and spiritual disease that affects every area of our lives.” – Basic Text, Narcotics Anonymous

Most experts, working in the field of addiction; agree that residential addiction treatment offers the best chances of staying clean. This involves staying in a specialized facility and participating in daily treatment programs. This eliminates the problem of succumbing to the overwhelming mental cravings & allows for round the clock care for the inevitable withdrawal symptoms and any psychological issues that may arise.

For most, it’s never easy to send a loved one to a rehabilitation facility. Staging an intervention and asking a loved one to enter treatment is typically stressful and emotional. However, it must be realised that an addicted person is very unlikely to be able to quit on his own.

We did not choose to become addicts. We suffer from a disease that expresses itself in ways that are anti-social and that makes detection, diagnosis and treatment difficult.

Initially, after going through a gruelling (and in some cases, horrifying) detoxification program – imagining life without using any mood changing mind altering substance sounds like a death sentence. But working a recovery program on a daily basis reworks things around in our heads and we start seeing hope and start gaining confidence.

Recovery is scary, confusing and lonely but recovery is created by you. Recovery, amongst other things, can also be defined as a return to a normal state of health, mind and strength. The amazing thing about recovery is it is personal, individualised and created by the one recovering.

Don’t waste another day on your addiction – let us help you get on the path of recovery today. Get help now !!

Addiction – Sad Poems

Kelly Roper, in her blog writes these sad poems. She believes reading poems about drug abuse and the havoc it wreaks can actually help addicts process your feelings if they’re caught in the middle of a bad situation. She recommends suffering addicts try writing some poems for themselves to help release any feelings of frustration, fear or hopelessness they might have. Bringing these feelings out into the daylight can lighten the burden, and this is often a first step to finding whichever kind of help they need.

A Slow Death

As I hold the spoon to the flame,
I’ve got no one but myself to blame.

As I stick the needle in my skin,
I don’t feel like I can ever win.

There’s a moment of elation,
That follows the penetration.

But it’s gone again too soon,
So I try to find my spoon.

And I’ll do it all again,
Until I reach the very end.

Giving Up

I can’t watch one more day,
As you throw your life away,
Push a needle in your vein,
and slowly go insane.

Seems there’s nothing I can do
To get through to you.
If you’re ever going to quit,
Find your own strength to do it.

I just can’t take it anymore,
So I’m walking out the door.
Don’t know if I’ll see you alive again,
But remember I tried to be your friend.

Escape From Reality …

A recent article by Fedaa al-Qedra, on AlJazeera reveals shocking details in the rise of addicts in Gaza. An extract of the article published on AlJazeera.

For a decade, Belal, 45, has been receiving a monthly salary from the Palestinian Authority on one condition: that he stay home and not work under the administration of the rival Hamas movement.

With enough money, plenty of time and few options for entertainment in Gaza under the crippling Israeli-Egyptian blockade, Belal began using Tramadol, an opioid painkiller that is illegal unless prescribed by a doctor. Tens of thousands of Palestinians in Gaza have been taking the drug as a way to escape the pressures of daily life in the besieged coastal enclave, doctors estimate.

“It starts just for fun, but then you cannot do without [the drug] until you ruin your life,” Belal told Al Jazeera from a room in Gaza’s only drug rehabilitation centre, where he has been seeking treatment.

Narcotics, including cannabis, have flooded Gaza in unprecedented quantities in recent months, according to Ahmed Kidra, the head of the local police anti-drug unit. The amounts seized in January alone equalled the total seized in all of 2016, he said, citing nearly $2m in seized hashish bars, Tramadol and ecstasy pills.

….read more

 

 

Welcome to Zorba

As addicts, we have experienced the pain, lonelines and despair of addiction. Having stayed clean all these years, and having worked with scores of recovering addicts, we can claim with some confidence today that we are better equipped to assist addicts struggling with the disease of addiction.

We deal with every aspect of addiction, not just its most obvious symptom: our uncontrollable drug use. The aspects of the disease are numerous. It is an insidious disease that affects every area of our lives – leaving destruction and shattered dreams in its wake. Your family dynamics may be greatly impacted, causing damage that can not be easily repaired. This is because, addiction is a disease that does not only affect the addicts themselves, it affects nearly everyone you are in contact with, especially your family and friends.

If you, or someone close to you is struggling with the disease of addiction, we can help. An addict, any addict, can stop using drugs, lose the desire to use, and find a new way to live. You are welcome here. We will work together with you in a labour of love, compassion and understanding. And as someone once wisely said – “The full fruits of a labour of love lies in its harvest, and that always comes in the right season

– Ronald D’Silva