Should I Go Back to Rehab after a Relapse?

Posted on November 14, 2014 By

Should I Go Back to Rehab after a Relapse?

Despite what you may think because of what you hear, relapse is not a requirement for recovery. But relapse does happen, and it becomes part of some peoples stories. A lot of people with amazing sobriety have experienced a relapse, it is nothing to be ashamed of.

Those who survive a relapse are luckier than they could even imagine, and going back to rehab after a relapse can help them to get grounded in their recovery again, and give them an opportunity to learn as much as they can from that relapse.

Rehab after a Relapse: Understanding Relapse

A relapse for those in recovery from drugs or alcohol means that a person has been clean and sober, or has stopped using drugs and alcohol, for a period of time and then begins drinking or using again.

Relapses can be pretty scary, especially when someone feels confident in their sobriety and then ends up in a down-ward spiral. A relapse is one of the hardest things to deal with and face in recovery, because people tend to let a relapse cause them a lot of guilt and shame that can prohibit them from learning from the mistake and moving on.

Alot of the times the person who begins using drugs or alcohol after a time of sobriety doesn’t know why it has happened. Even someone who really wanted to stay sober can relapse and at the end up be kicking themselves all day, asking themselves “Why and how did this happen?” and “Should I go back to rehab after a relapse?”

Relapse can become a sad and troubling reality for anyone with the disease of alcoholism or addiction, and anyone in recovery is susceptible to a relapse back into active addiction. So when considering rehab after a relapse, it is important to not let shame hold you back. Relapse doesn’t have to be a part of anyone’s journey getting sober, but it can happen and rehab after a relapse can be one of the best ways to know what to do if it does.

Rehab after a Relapse: Support New Recovery

If you or your loved one starts drinking or using again, it is important to get them straight back into rehab after a relapse. Going back to rehab after a relapse may at first seem counter-productive, or even futile, in the light that they just went to treatment and now have started using or drinking again.

But the reason you or your loved one should go to rehab after a relapse is because when a relapse happens it is unknown when that person will stop, most do not stop immediately even if they want to.

Rehab after a relapses is even more important because the time directly after a relapse can be very dangerous and scary in the sense that it’s during this time overdoses are more likely to happen. With progression of the disease of addiction relapses always get worse, never better. Rehab after a relapse can help prevent the person struggling from going back out and using excessively.

Going back to rehab after a relapse is not only the safest option but it is also the smartest option. Recovery is a journey and just because a relapse happens doesn’t mean a person will never get the gift of a lifetime of sobriety, it only means that they should do everything they can to support their new sobriety.

You should not give up on the option of learning something you may have missed at treatment the first time. Going back to rehab after a relapse is something many addicts and alcoholics do, because they realize that they do not know everything, obviously, and could use that time to heal and start over.

Sometimes these addicts and alcoholics who go back to rehab after a relapse end up getting more out of it that they were missing before, and stay sober for the rest of their life. We never know what the journey of recovery may hold and for some people it holds one or more relapses. However, some more innovative programs offer relapse prevention courses and strategies, to try and help build the strongest foundation and protection from a relapse. IF you or someone you love is struggling with substance abuse or addiction, please call toll-free 1-800-777-9588


5 Choices That Can Change Your Life

Posted on November 13, 2014 By

5 Choices That Can Change Your Life

In life there are always choices, some simple and some so complex or confusing people will put them off for years at a time. Every choice is an opportunity that can change our circumstances, and ultimately our life’s journey, and sometimes we don’t know how things could have been because of the choices we chose not to make. Whatever the case may be, we should appreciate the gift of freedom to make these decisions, and not squander too many chances for change.

People often fall victim to the delusion that they have no choice, and this is especially true for people struggling with drugs or alcohol. Despite any expectation that there is no other way, whether in recovery or not, these are just 5 choices that can change your life.

  1. Allow yourself to love yourself

Love is by far one of the most powerful resources we can have, and it is ingrained in us. Whether we can acknowledge it or not, we have an endless supply of it, and we can use it to inspire others, heal the wounds the world can leave us with, and love can remind us of the limitless worth we have.

By allowing yourself to love yourself, you open up the flood gates of an immense supply of confidence and energy to fuel the things you are most passionate about. Loving yourself also allows you to forgive yourself for the past, for any shortcomings, and lets you believe in yourself and your capacity to change. Loving yourself can ultimately help you to truly be who you are, and who you are not.

  1. Show other people in your life how much you love them

Having just emphasized the importance and the power of love and what it can do for you, it should be pretty obvious why this is important. Of course it is the kind of gift that you can give yourself, but love is also an amazing feeling that you can share and express with those closest to you.

Showing the people in your life how much they mean to you can change your life, because it can alter the course of any relationship that has a real influence of who you are and how the quality of your life evolves. If someone close to you doubts their importance according to you, they may not allow themselves to truly be present in your life. Once someone knows how much you care, it can change everything.

  1. Don’t be afraid to pursue your passions

Who we are and the way we perceive the world is often inspired by the things that inspire us. Our passions are what give us the fire inside to strive on, to create and to explore, and to discover who we are and what we have to contribute to the beauty of the world. The things we love and the ambitions we have the potential to give our lives such fulfillment if we can take the risks to achieve those goals.

Too many people attest that they have lived to some degree of regret because out of all their years alive they chose the safer route. They chose social and financial security rather than the things that made them happy, and in the end it was not worth the sacrifice.

The choice to not let fear control the things you do and the dreams you chase will open you up to truly seek out the greatest extent of the person you can be. To let go of the idea that money should outweigh the things you love most can completely change your life.

  1. Commit to healthier habits

Sticking to a commitment is always important. Once we make a decision to do something for a better life, we should always be willing to see it through rather than give up on these goals or aspirations, especially when the choice we have initially made is for a healthier life.

No one lives forever, that much is true. But the quality of life that we have can be easily determined by how much we are willing to take care of ourselves. Things like hygiene, personal fitness, and taking care of ourselves mentally and emotionally will only magnify the quality of the results we get for the other choices that we make. So once we have decided to take action towards a healthier mind and body, we should commit to that choice.

  1. Don’t let others dictate who you are

Being trapped inside the expectations and opinions of others is nowhere to live your life. Holding yourself back because of what others might think of you, or because of what others might tell you is the person you should be is a life wasted trying to confine yourself to someone else’s perception of you.

Other people can only see us from a vantage point with limited perspective, they can only see maybe one or two of our dimensions that we let them see, without feeling the intricate emotional attachments, without understanding the layers of what makes us an individual. So they want to judge of from their point of view.

One of the worst things we can do is chose to try and compress all that we are into a fake presentation of what the world wants from us. Making the choice to be who you are, regardless of being misjudged or misunderstood, is real freedom. With that freedom all other choices become more powerful, because those choices are made genuinely, with love and faith.

It’s been said a thousand times a thousand different ways, that sometimes the best choices for us are the most difficult to make. We sometimes find ourselves caught in between trying to do what is right, and trying to do what is right for us. But in reality the two are more often than not the same, but the choice isn’t always easy. Sometimes the hardest choice we make is the choice that saves our lives. If you or someone you love is struggling with substance abuse or addiction, please call toll-free 1-800-777-9588


Peaking Interests in Pot Stocks

Posted on November 12, 2014 By

Peaking Interests in Pot Stocks

As reported on earlier, both here and just about anywhere else, the Election Day wins for marijuana legalization claimed new territories with initiatives in Alaska, Oregon, and Washington, D.C. that apparently are creating a spiked interest from potential financial investors who are wondering how much money to devote in the cannabis industry in order to capitalize on the growing change. But some wonder will the payout be worth the risk?

Stocks for Pot

Over an estimated 200 high net worth investors congregated on Tuesday, November 11th in Las Vegas in order to submit pitches to a forum by the ArcView Investor Network. The ArcView Investor Network brings a forum for legal cannabis-related businesses to meet with investors seeking to profit from this growing sector that many believe will be a huge piece of rejuvenating the economy. But despite all the excitement, is now truly the right time to put funds into marijuana businesses?

Some say yes, others say no, but according to a cross-section of media and investment observers, the answer is… well, a little bit of both. Forbes contributor Mark Fidelman recently helped conduct a survey of investors to BioTech to measure the average collective interest in pumping money into the cannabis industry to turn a profit, and found that nearly 75% of the respondents believe that it’s a financially sound idea.

Fidelman himself is quick to acknowledge what could be the single biggest obstacle facing potential investors, that so far marijuana is only legal for sale by in-state companies, and remains a Schedule I substance, making it a little bit more risky business. However, Fidelman and the investors he surveyed believe that it is only a matter of time before marijuana is made legal at the federal level, eliminating the potential to waste money on a company that will be put out of business before it can clear even.

Market Expert Opinions

Anyone who is willing to get involved at this stage of the game with the cannabis industry is probably trying to step into an older pair of shoes and follow in the footsteps of Joseph Kennedy of the old days when alcohol was the topic of economic speculation. CEO of Mentor Capital, Inc. Chet Billingsley explained,

“He amassed a stock position before the lifting of prohibition and made a fortune from the re-legalization of alcohol. Many public companies are copying this model. They are positioning to have market share and established market presences when marijuana prohibition lifts.”

Matt Egan at CNN’s Money desk takes a little bit of a different perspective on the pot market and how he believes investments may be jumping the gun. Publicly-traded marijuana companies are fueled by penny stocks, which are less regulated and more speculative than large cap stocks maintained by major companies. Egan referred to the example of Medbox, which makes automated dispensing systems for both medication and marijuana. That innovation has seen its share of dramatic changes in market worth.

Quite a few over-zealous investors interested in Medbox sent stocks up from $8 in December 2013 to $93.50 less than a month later. Then before you knew it, within two days to be exact, the stock plunged back to $33, and currently remains around $11, not much further from where it began a year ago. Medbox is still one of the biggest marijuana stocks to look at, with a market value of around $350 million, but still it remains a serious risk because the industry itself is still so limited.

Egan quotes Nicholas Colas, chief market strategist at ConvergeEx in an attempt to inspire all the potential investors who are putting all their money on the legalization of marijuana to bring them great riches:

“If you begin to get a feeling that marijuana will become legal in our lives at a federal level, you should probably look at tobacco companies, because they already have the manufacturing and distribution facilities.”

In reality this is probably one of the smartest move that can be made, especially for bigger investors. With the tobacco industry having all the resources to really start making some changes in the way marijuana is grown, harvested, packaged and distributed there is a serious likelihood that if legalized on a national level, they will be creating more jobs for a whole new take on their own industry. Either way planning to put your money where the marijuana is might need a little more strategy than previously expected, but with this kind of change in pot politics, there is sure to be a profit to be made.

Marijuana continues to become more of a topic of discussion as legislation and regulations shift toward legalization. Some are concerned with what impact this will have on those already struggling with drugs or alcohol. How it will effect those who have yet to use drugs or alcohol, and will it create more addicts? Time will tell, but for those already struggling there is help. If you or someone you love is struggling with substance abuse or addiction, please call toll-free 1-800-951-6135


Not a Night Owl or a Morning Lark? Study Suggests There are Two Other Types

Posted on November 11, 2014 By

 Not a Night Owl or a Morning Lark? Study Suggests There are Two Other Types

We’ve all heard the term ‘night owl;’ in fact, many of us would probably describe ourselves as such: people who prefer to sleep in and are more alert and active in the evenings. Well, scientifically speaking, “owls” are a recognized chronotype, a term that refers to a human trait, specifically in reference to what time of the day their physical functions – eating and sleeping, hormone level, body temperature, cognitive abilities – are active, change or reach a certain level.

Furthermore, just as there “owls,” there is another basic preferred sleep schedule: that of the “larks,” those who are generally referred to as “morning people” (or “crazy people”).

However, Russian scientists are now proposing that there are actually four chronotypes, rather than the two basic, common ones we know. In addition to early- and late-risers, there’s a group who feel energetic in both the mornings and evenings, as well as a group who feel sluggish all day long.

Not a Night Owl or a Morning Lark? Study Suggests There are Two Other Types

In a forthcoming study for the journal, Personality and Individual Differences, biologist Arcady Putilov and his colleagues at the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences asked 130 participants to remain awake for 24 hours. The participants then filled out questionnaires rating how awake they felt, describing their overall sleep patterns, as well as rating how well they had functioned during the previous week.

The study results revealed that there were 29 larks, who showed higher energy levels at 9 a.m. than at 9 p.m., and 44 owls, whose energy levels were flip-flopped. On average, the owls also went to bed about two hours later than the larks. That leaves about half of the remaining participants without a group with which they identified; they were neither owls nor larks.

As BPS Research Digest puts it:

There was a “high energetic” group of 25 people who reported feeling relatively sprightly in both the morning and evening; and a “lethargic” group of 32 others, who described feeling relatively dozy in both the morning and evening.

In both of these other groups, energetic and lethargic participants went to bed and woke up somewhere between the hours kept by the owl and lark groups. Despite what you might think, the energetic group got about 30 minutes less sleep overall than the other three groups, with an average of 7.5 hours of sleep each night.

Scientists believe that the many aspects of personality and intellectual domains, such as creative thinking, have much to do with chronotypes.

Chronotypes may not be etched in stone, though. There’s a lot to consider when it comes to ascribing yourself to one of these four recognized groups. For one, there is the quality of sleep that you are receiving. Some people experience sleep disorders, such as apnea, that can interrupt their sleep patterns and therefore leave them feeling sluggish throughout their waking hours.

Another aspect to consider is that biologic processes, such as circadian rhythm, have everything to do with sleep. Science has already found that going to bed at a certain time, say when you are actually feeling sleepy, and waking at the end of a circadian period (each lasting about 90 minutes), you are more likely to feel well-rested; by the same token, someone who wakes in the middle of a circadian period will feel as if they hardly slept, even if they got several hours of sleep that night.

Insomnia is a medical condition, but it is often something experienced by people who have become physically dependent on alcohol and other drugs. If you are struggling with substance abuse or addiction, please call toll-free 1-800-777-9588 to speak directly with an Addiction Specialist who can answer your questions day or night.


Seeking Smartphone Addiction Solutions

Posted on November 10, 2014 By

Seeking Smartphone Addiction Solutions

Most people would be reluctant to compare their smartphone with a narcotic, but several studies including one on texting while driving have done exactly that, by weighing the symptoms of drug addiction to the use of smartphones. The idea of smartphone addiction has become so real that these studies have even inspired products based off of combating the psychological turmoil associated with excessive cellphone use.

Last year a poll determined 84% of the globe is “addicted to cellphones,” and one tech expert named Mary Meeker even claimed through her research that the average smartphone owner looks at their device 150 times a day! So how has smartphone addiction truly become a trending topic?

Texting While Driving

Recent research was commissioned by AT&T and conducted by the University of Connecticut School of Medicine, in cooperation with the well-known “Texting & Driving…It Can Wait” campaign. The findings showed:

  • 90% of those surveyed knew they shouldn’t text and drive
  • 75% admitted to at least glancing at their phone while behind the wheel

Lead researcher Dr. David Greenfield suggested that receiving a message on your phone create a rush of dopamine and positive emotions, but “if that desire for a dopamine fix leads us to check our phones while we’re driving, a simple text can turn deadly.”

AT&T has addressed this issue by creating a free app for the iPhone entitled DriveMode, which silences text messages alerts and lets senders know the user is driving whenever speeds of 15 miles per hour are reached. Parents can also be notified if the app has been shut off. AT&T also made a statement about their efforts and the task at hand:

“Those who are most likely to text and drive are also the most likely to take steps to stop, and 82% of people who take action to stop texting and driving feel good about themselves.”

In May of 2013 another study found that texting while driving surpassed drunk driving as the leading cause of traffic deaths among teens. Researchers at Cohen Children’s Medical Center in New Hyde Park determined:

  • 3,000 teens die annually from texting while driving
  • 2,700 from drunk driving
  • People texting while driving are 23 times more likely to find themselves in a car accident

NoPhone Not Exactly Nonsense

The infamous advertisement for the noPhone seems like a gag at first, but it is all too real. As a method of addressing smartphone addiction, the noPhone is a non-device designed to subside the escalating unease and separation anxiety issues too often caused by mobile device and smartphone addiction.

The artificial smartphone simulator is essentially a plastic brick that works like a stress ball. This is a new way for smartphone addicts to deal with their fear of being without their mobile devices, or ‘nomophobia’. Just when you start to wonder, yes this is an actual thing. It cannot be ignored that smartphone addiction is a reality on the rise, while millions of smartphone users are unable to cope with any time away from their mobile devices.

According to recent studies reported on in Psychology Today, 40% of smartphone users sleep with their phone by their bedside. It has become more and more evident that people simply cannot cope without having their calling, tweeting, texting or tagging taken too far out of reach. In surveys done in regards to smartphone addiction, when people misplace their phones:

  • 73% say they feel panicked
  • 14% say they feel desperate
  • 7% even say they feel sick

The noPhone appears to be waterproof and wireless. No Wi-Fi? No Problem! This things only purpose it to be gripped in place of an actual phone to avoid being anti-social and to help stay focused on face-to-face communication, without the terror of impending doom caused by not having a piece of technology to settle your shaky hands when forced to interact with other physical beings.

Pause App for iPhone Addicts  

Strangely enough, one company claims that the smartphone itself may hold the key to salvation from smartphone addiction! Dependence on a cellphone can easily make life unmanageable, and any addict can understand how serious un-manageability is to addiction.

Pause is a new app that is currently only available for iPhones which operates on the assumption that forcing mobile-dependents to turn off their Wi-Fi signals can help them let go of their obsession for a few moments at a time. The app’s description states,

Pause helps us to reduce our dependency on digital media and in turn free us up to do something more.”

Pause is free, and works by encouraging users to set their phones on “airplane mode,” ceasing all Wi-Fi, 3G and cell connectivity to reconnect with the real world. To boost motivation, Pause makes a game out of it by keeping track of how long you stay offline so you can try to beat your own “high score,” or even compete with your friends over who is able to go the longest without caving to the lure of connection.

While many may not feel too overwhelmed by this kind of motivation, there is something to be admired in the idea. Setting up a scoring system and challenging each-other to spend more time away from our phones may actually be another helpful initiative. The Pause system literally uses the power of the smartphone against itself, and no matter how long you log off, you always win.

Smartphone addiction may not seem like an issue at the forefront, but what we should be taking from this is that addiction is not as simple and black and white as people think. No matter what the cause- narcotics, food, gambling, technology- addiction is unmanageable and far more than a question of self-control. Real recovery means far more than just not doing something and suffering anyway. If you or someone you love is struggling with substance abuse or addiction, please call toll-free 1-800-777-9588