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Friday, July 12, 2019

4 Reasons Recovery Is a Lifelong Process

The word “journey” is one of the best ways to describe recovery. Along the way, you will experience many peaks and valleys. Some days, the path will be clear and straight, while other days will feel as if you are wandering through the wilderness. Though recovering addicts will all share the same goal of lifelong sobriety, no two people will have identical experiences in getting there. It requires patience, perseverance and dedication to reap the ultimate rewards of your recovery.

1. Treatment is only the beginning.

Treatment is valuable because it will equip you with the therapeutic background and coping skills you need to start your life over. There is plenty of evidence to suggest that the longer you spend in treatment, the more successful you will be in recovery, but even a long-term program can’t teach you everything about how to live a fulfilling life as a recovering addict. It will take the rest of your life to absorb valuable lessons about love, patience and self-acceptance.

2. Your mindset matters.

There’s a common misconception that people who enter rehabilitation will be completely healed when they leave the program, but it’s important to consider that the process of becoming addicted changes your brain. That’s why recovery is not a one-and-done task, but a dynamic, fluid process that evolves with time. You need to accept that getting sober isn’t something you can achieve, cross off your list and never look back again. Instead, you need to carve out time every day to dedicate yourself to your recovery, whether it’s attending therapy sessions, going to sober group meetings, meditating, doing yoga or some combination of those activities. You can’t afford to lose sight of your objectives. One lapse in judgment could be all it takes to weaken your resolve.

3. Sobriety requires an ongoing commitment.

Deciding to get clean and sober by entering treatment is just one of many decisions you will have to make in your recovery. Not only will you need to make your health your top priority every day, but you will also have to renew your commitment to the process time and time again. Unfortunately, there is no cure for addiction, but just as with other chronic illnesses, you can learn to manage it with the skills from your recovery program.

4. There will be challenges along the way.

No matter how much your life will improve after you break free of the addiction cycle, life isn’t always fair. You may encounter stressful situations like the death of a loved one, the loss of a job, an illness or an injury. When drinking or drug use has been your go-to coping mechanism for so long, obstacles like these can jeopardize your sobriety, even when you are doing the right thing. At difficult times like these, you will need to take a deep breath and reassess your reasons for getting sober and all the progress you have made. Meditation can be a helpful way to restore your sense of equilibrium.

Healing You Mentally, Physically and Emotionally

Many people who get sober will freely admit that they couldn’t have done it alone. Indeed, some days will be more challenging than others, and there will be times when you need a healthy support system of family, friends and therapists to help pick you up. Recovery will always involve learning, growing and facing your challenges with a positive mindset. At Canyon Crossing, our mission is to help women overcome their battle with substance misuse and forge a new path as the best version of themselves they can be. Contact us today to begin your recovery at our beautiful Prescott, AZ addiction recovery facility.

Friday, July 5, 2019

5 Reasons You Need a Support System in Recovery

When you were in active addiction, you probably spent a lot of your time alone, withdrawing from friends and family who didn’t share your routine of heavy drinking or drug use. The people you spent the most time with were probably those who encouraged your bad habits. When you decided to clean up your act and enter a rehab program, it may have been the first time in years you realized how many people you pushed away with your self-destructive behaviors.

Once you commit to making a fresh start, you might feel like you want to take complete ownership of your recovery and meet your challenges head-on. However, embarking on this journey requires plenty of help and support. Taking it on without a team at your back can be a significant source of stress, which can jeopardize your well-being and put you at a higher risk of relapsing.

Why Seek Support in Your Recovery?

As you embark on this new phase of your life, you will need to find family and friends who understand what you’re going through and are there to pick you up when you’re struggling with self-doubt. Your sober support group will help you in a variety of ways that will change you for the better.

  1. Facing challenges will be easier. When you encounter a hurdle or roadblock on your path, you might feel overwhelmed. Your first impulse in a stressful situation might be to revert to your old habits of drinking or drug use. In this scenario, you need people you can count on to help prevent you from falling back into a cycle of self-sabotage. The insight and advice of supportive family members and friends can help put a difficult or emotional situation in perspective.
  2. Friends help reduce tensions. You might have begun using alcohol or drugs to smooth your anxiety in social situations, only to discover your addiction made your anxiety deepen. Bringing a sober supporter with you to parties or other social scenarios helps reduce the stress and awkwardness associated with these situations.
  3. Family and friends keep you grounded. Sometimes, you might become too confident in your ability to confront triggering situations, which could increase your risk of relapse. Someone who knows what you’re going through and understands how important it is to preserve the progress you’ve made can offer valuable insight about your behavior.
  4. You will always have people to celebrate with you. Being surrounded by people who support your progress is invaluable, especially when you are struggling. They can help you look back and see how much progress you’ve made along the way and will always be there to cheer for you, even when you are feeling dissatisfied with yourself.
  5. You will gain a boost in your self-confidence. Nothing feels better than having a group of positive people who are proud of you and enjoy seeing you succeed. Their role in your recovery can help build up the self-esteem that years of substance misuse wore down.

You Can’t Go It Alone

Recovery is a lifelong journey with many peaks and valleys. Some setbacks and struggles are inevitable, which can create stress that puts you at risk of relapse. However, having a sober support system will make your recovery more manageable and bring more joy into your life.

When you are ready to make a new start, contact the Canyon Crossing team. Our women’s-only treatment facility in Prescott, Arizona, is here to provide the foundation for your sobriety with our range of programs that will heal you physically, mentally and spiritually.

Friday, June 28, 2019

How to Create a Relapse Prevention Plan

The National Institute on Drug Abuse estimates addiction has relapse rates of 40 to 60 percent, which is lower than the relapse rates of other chronic diseases, such as high blood pressure and asthma. If you return to using drugs or alcohol after a period of abstinence, that doesn’t mean you’ve failed in your recovery. You can still resume your sober lifestyle and sharpen your focus on your goals with a relapse prevention plan.

What Is a Relapse Prevention Plan?

The warning signs of relapse often come well before you fall back to old, bad habits, so it’s essential to be able to recognize the red flags. A relapse prevention plan is an evolving document that helps keep you accountable for your life in recovery.

Taking time to craft a plan that encompasses your unique needs is an essential part of helping you remain on a positive path. Though no two plans will be identical, here are some components you can use to get started.

1. Understand yourself.

What made you want to turn to drugs or alcohol in your previous life? Was your substance use a coping mechanism? Did you use alcohol or drugs to numb the pain of depression or trauma? Write down a list of common situations where you were accustomed to using or drinking in the past. Understanding your typical usage patterns when you were in active addiction can help you recognize and avoid circumstances that might cause you to relapse back to substance misuse.

2. Make a list of your triggers.

An addiction trigger is any place, experience, event or even a person that causes you to step off your path of sobriety. Everyone’s triggers are different, but understanding yours can help you be more proactive about how to handle them as they arise. Common examples of triggers are stress, loneliness, visiting with old drinking buddies or being in surroundings where you used to do drugs. Realistically, some of these triggers are impossible to avoid, so it’s smart to ask your therapist to help you develop specific strategies that will help you manage each trigger on your list.

3. Involve others.

Successful recovery cannot happen in isolation. Reach out to a friend you made in rehab, a close family member or your therapist and ask if it’s OK for you to text or call them if you’re struggling. Come up with a set of healthy activities that will distract you from your cravings and help you deepen relationships with positive people who want to support you in your recovery journey.

4. Set specific goals.

Another vital aspect of your relapse prevention plan is setting short- and long-term goals for your sober lifestyle. Examples could be practicing yoga for 30 minutes a day, learning a new life skill or volunteering at your local animal shelter once a week. Making daily efforts to prioritize your overall well-being not only helps you manage stress, but also reinforces your sense of self-worth and accomplishment.

Your Relapse Prevention Plan Is Not Static

Once you have created your relapse prevention plan, your work isn’t finished. Return to your plan periodically and revise it to reflect new goals or progress you’ve made on your journey. And if you’re new to sobriety and haven’t already created a plan, ask your therapist to help you get started on one today.

Your Best Days Are Still Ahead

If you’re searching for a women’s-only drug and alcohol rehabilitation facility, contact Canyon Crossing today. Long-term treatment and relapse prevention are only two facets of our well-rounded program offerings. Our admissions team is happy to help verify your insurance and walk you through our enrollment process.

Friday, June 21, 2019

When Getting Sober Reveals Another Illness

As you settle into your sobriety, you may initially marvel at how much better you feel. Not only will you experience sharper mental clarity, but your time in an accredited drug and alcohol treatment facility will teach you how to reestablish a healthy sleep schedule, how to exercise and how to eat a balanced diet.

However, despite the initial burst of wellness you feel, you shouldn’t ignore the fact that prolonged drug and alcohol misuse takes a toll on your physical and emotional well-being. For some people, their addiction masks other health issues that only rise to the surface after they achieve sobriety. Here’s what you should be aware of.

Why Haven’t You Noticed This Problem Until Now?

Those in the grip of active addiction prioritize obtaining and using their substance of choice beyond all else. As the addiction worsens, they fail to keep up with other responsibilities. Those with behavioral or mood disorders like substance misuse and depression often ignore fundamental personal hygiene. They also avoid visiting the doctor or dentist because they want to hide the extent of their substance misuse. Because of factors like these, you may begin noticing health problems when you are sober that never appeared on your radar when you were actively drinking or using.

Drug Use Causes Health Issues

Long-term drug and alcohol use affects every major system in the body, weakening your immune system and putting you at a higher risk of developing an illness or infection. With prolonged drug or alcohol use, you may also develop conditions such as:
  • Heart arrhythmia
  • Liver damage
  • Gastrointestinal problems
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Insomnia
  • Impaired decision-making ability
  • Anxiety or depression
The earlier you get your addiction under control, the sooner you will be able to work with health care providers to begin undoing the damage you did to your physical and mental health.

Prioritizing Your Health in Sobriety

Once you have moved out of your initial residential treatment phase, restoring your physical and mental well-being should be a fundamental part of your aftercare plan.
  • Visit your general practitioner. Make sure to be upfront with them about the fact that you have gone through a rehabilitation program. Ask for a full checkup, including screenings for any health problems you are at particular risk of.
  • Get a dental checkup. Your oral health and your overall wellness are more closely linked than you may have realized. Your dentist may be able to spot emerging health issues and alert you to them.
  • Make an appointment with a psychiatrist. Don’t neglect your mental health as part of your self-care strategy. By visiting a mental health professional, you can give yourself an outlet to talk about any emotional imbalances you are experiencing after achieving your sobriety.
  • Eat well. You are what you eat, after all. By cutting processed foods out of your diet in favor of fresh, colorful produce and lean protein sources, you’ll have more energy and will feel better about yourself. If you’re not sure where to get started, reach out to a nutritionist.

The Rest of Your Life Is Waiting for You

At Canyon Crossing, we are here to help you achieve lifelong freedom from drugs and alcohol with our women’s-only treatment program in Prescott, AZ. You deserve to discover your full potential, and our comprehensive programming will teach you how to live a rewarding life outside the cycle of addiction. Contact us to begin the admissions process today.

Friday, June 14, 2019

Ways to Get Ready for Rehab

Deciding to seek treatment for your addiction is never easy, but it can change your life by empowering you to start over, free from the burdens of your past. However, the way you prepare for rehab can make all the difference in setting you up for success. Here are some strategies you can use to get ready for rehab and maximize your time in treatment.

How to Prepare for Rehab

These are some of the top things to keep in mind, both as you’re getting ready to enter an accredited rehab center and while you are receiving treatment.

1. Take Care of Loose Ends Ahead of Time

During your stay in inpatient recovery, your entire focus should be on healing yourself mentally, physically and spiritually. Before entering rehab, you should wrap up any outstanding work, financial or family obligations. If you are preoccupied with your obligations in the “outside world,” it will be challenging to maintain that focus. Additionally, stress is one of the most significant relapse triggers, so returning to a disorganized situation after rehab is setting yourself up for failure.

2. Only Bring the Essentials

In preparation for treatment, consider what you want to bring with you. It’s understandable if you think about bringing mementos from home to your recovery center, but those may distract you from your goals. Bringing only the basic necessities is an extra step to help you maximize your time away.

3. Be Optimistic

Being open to new experiences is a vital component of recovery. It’s never easy to enter unfamiliar territory, but the more you can maintain an open mind, the more benefit you’ll get out of it.

4. Be Patient

It’s easier to talk about than it is to accomplish, but if you can keep an even keel, it will serve you well in both the short and long term. A great way to teach yourself patience is through mindfulness meditation, which has numerous benefits for your mental health. Learning to appreciate the present moment enables you to cultivate patience.

5. Look Forward to New Friendships

One of the benefits of rehab is that you’ll get to meet many people who have been through the same experiences that have challenged you throughout your life. Addiction is inherently isolating, which can make the thought of forming new friendships seem intimidating. It’s natural to have periods of low self-esteem in recovery, but remember everyone in treatment with you is going through many of the same ups and downs together. The relationships you make in rehab will provide you with a support network that can remain with you for years.

Prepare for the Next Chapter in Your Life 

At Canyon Crossing, we believe you deserve to become whole. Discover how fulfilling your life can be when you free yourself from the cycle of addiction. At our women’s-only rehab facility in Prescott, Arizona, we provide long-term treatment, coupled with transitional living and outpatient treatment, to ensure higher rates of success for our clients. Contact us to learn more about our admissions process.

Friday, June 7, 2019

Substance Misuse and Co-Occurring Disorders in the LGBTQ Community

Around the world, the LGBTQ community celebrates Pride Month in June. However, while the LGBTQ community has made great strides toward achieving equality with their heterosexual and cisgender counterparts, there is still much opportunity for progress. One noteworthy area is in addiction and co-occurring mental health disorders, which disproportionately affect LGBTQ people.

How Vulnerable Are LGBTQ People to These Issues?

2015 data from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration shows a clear connection between sexual orientation, gender identity and substance misuse. More than twice as many LGBTQ adults compared to heterosexual adults reported using drugs, smoking cigarettes or binge drinking.

Additionally, LGBTQ adults are much more likely than their heterosexual counterparts to have depression, anxiety or other emotional or behavioral problems and to think about or attempt suicide, all of which increase the risk of substance use. Why?

Factors That Contribute to LGBTQ Mental Health and Addiction Issues

While the U.S. has made promising strides in gay rights over the past 50 years, many LGBTQ individuals still face social prejudice and other daily indignities those who identify as heterosexual and cisgender typically do not encounter, including:
  • Discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity
  • Hate crimes, emotional abuse, threats or public humiliation
  • Estrangement from family or friends after coming out
  • Loss of employment or not receiving promotions
  • Internalized homophobia or self-loathing
Consider, for example, the “bathroom bills” many states have recently tried to pass to prevent transgender people from using the public restroom or locker room that matches their gender identity. The pernicious myth that letting trans people use these facilities would lead to higher rates of sexual predation has been disproven time and time again, but it persists regardless.

LGBTQ people are also subject to discriminatory laws in employment, housing, health care and relationship recognition – including legal hurdles to adopting children. For these and other reasons, many people in this community struggle with their identities because they fear encountering backlash from friends and family members. This intense level of chronic stress can lead to higher levels of anxiety, fear, isolation and anger, which can increase the chances they will turn to alcohol and other drugs to self-medicate.

Co-Occurring Disorders in the LGBTQ Community

One aspect that may be an intense source of conflict for LGBTQ people is their perceived need to lead a double life, hiding their true sexual orientation or gender identity from some while being themselves around others. This dual nature creates a significant psychological rift that may lead them to develop emotional disorders like anxiety, depression, PTSD and suicidal ideation.

Many individuals who identify as LGBTQ also have a co-occurring mental or physical health disorder that either led to a substance misuse problem or is perpetuating the cycle of abuse. When members of the LGBTQ community are weighing treatment options, they should focus on finding holistic treatment programs that work on healing them physically, emotionally and spiritually.

Women’s-Only Rehab in Arizona

If you are looking for a drug or alcohol treatment program, you deserve to find one that not only makes you feel comfortable, but also offers you the highest chance of achieving sustained sobriety. Commemorate Pride Month 2019 by making this the month you commit to breaking free of your substance abuse problems and co-occurring disorders. At Canyon Crossing, we are here to help you find happiness and integrity in your life. To learn more or verify your insurance, contact our admissions team today.

Friday, May 31, 2019

Should You Date in Recovery?

When you first begin to explore a new romantic relationship after you clean up your act and get sober, it’s normal to feel confused about where to begin. You may be surprised to learn that you relate to others very differently in sobriety than you did back when you were actively drinking or using. It may take you time to learn how to form healthy, loving relationships with people when drugs or alcohol are out of the picture and no longer clouding your judgment.

Getting back onto the dating scene as a recovering addict can make you more vulnerable to relapse if you are not ready for the road ahead. The emotional upheaval at the beginning or end of a romantic relationship can cause you to lose sight of your recovery priorities and put your sobriety at risk.

How Long Should You Wait to Start Dating?

When you’re in early recovery, you’ll often hear the advice that you should hold off at least one full year before embarking on any new relationship. That’s because the first year of addiction recovery is a crucial time when you need to devote all your time and energy to managing your health and maintaining your newfound sobriety.

During the first year of your recovery, you’ll also be rediscovering yourself, learning who you are without the influence of drugs and alcohol, adapting healthy coping skills and rebuilding your self-confidence. That’s a lot to have on your plate without adding the complexities of a romantic relationship into the equation.

If you do meet someone who sparks your interest within the first year of recovery, it’s essential to take things one step at a time and be honest with your potential partner that your sobriety needs to remain the top priority in your life. After all, you must learn to love yourself before you can love someone else.

Ideas for Great Sober Dates

As you explore the world of dating in your newfound sobriety, you may wonder what activities you can do. If getting drunk or high was how you spent most of your time until fairly recently, it might make it difficult for you to think of fun things you can do with a significant other that don’t revolve around harmful substances. However, with a little creativity, you can overcome this difficulty. Here are 10 ideas to get you started.
  1. Go to an art gallery or museum.
  2. Try to solve an escape room.
  3. Go thrift or antique shopping.
  4. Enjoy an evening at the ballet, symphony or theater.
  5. Explore a local tourist attraction neither of you has visited before.
  6. Go on a hike or bike ride – you’ll get some exercise while taking in the scenery.
  7. Visit a nearby zoo or aquarium.
  8. Tour a factory to learn how they make their products.
  9. Learn a new skill by signing up for a cooking, dancing, drawing or photography class.
  10. Give back to the community by volunteering at an animal shelter, soup kitchen or another deserving nonprofit.
Remember, all your dates will be substance-free. You can avoid boredom – a risky trigger for many in recovery – by finding an activity you love to do together, adding a spark of competition or developing new twists on old date ideas.

Discovering the Rewards of Dating While Putting Your Recovery First

Among all the other ways substance abuse wreaks havoc on your life, it severely impacts your ability to maintain healthy relationships. When you date in recovery, you can discover a more genuine connection than you have experienced before. However, even when you have fallen head over heels for a special someone, you should always keep addiction recovery as your first priority.

At Canyon Crossing, we have helped hundreds of women reconnect with their true selves and learn how to maximize their potential in life by breaking free of substance misuse. We offer traditional 12-step-based therapy, as well as complementary treatment options that provide a foundation for a healthy recovery and put your needs first. If you feel as if your life has gotten out of control, contact us today to start your admissions process.

Friday, May 24, 2019

Developing Healthy Coping Skills in Recovery

Successfully healing your body, mind and spirit from a substance misuse disorder is a lifelong process. According to the American Society of Addiction Medicine, addiction is not a behavioral issue or a matter of choice, but a chronic brain disease.

Like other long-term illnesses, such as cancer, there isn’t a cure, but people with addiction shouldn’t give up hope – it’s something you can learn to manage for the long term. Part of that process includes learning how to identify and cope with triggers so you can focus on avoiding relapse and living a healthy life free of intoxicating substances.

Weaving Coping Skills Into Your Aftercare Plan

Addiction recovery doesn’t end with completing a rehab program. Indeed, rehab is only the first part of the continuous journey of discovering long-term sobriety. Aftercare is an umbrella term that refers to all the steps you will take to remain on the path to your healthy lifestyle.

People with addiction disorders often turn to drinking or drugs to help them manage the stressors of daily life, insead of developing healthy coping mechanisms like exercise and meditation. That means part of your rehab and aftercare process means learning how to fill your time with hobbies other than drug use and drinking, as well as how to deal with stress and process other emotions in a constructive way. Look for a drug rehabilitation program that offers educational workshops on life skills you can use as part of your aftercare process.

Why Healthy Coping Skills Are Fundamental

Unfortunately, we don’t often learn healthy coping mechanisms in school or from our families. Under times of duress, people often turn to the simplest remedy to handle the tension – and alcohol and drugs are readily available in most communities.

A crucial part of addiction recovery is learning how to recognize people, places, emotions, memories and situations that pose a threat to your sobriety – also called addiction triggers. Your rehab program should include both therapy and various workshops designed to provide foundational coping tactics that work for a wide range of different personalities and situations. These can include simple mindfulness exercises, behavioral issues and how to set boundaries in your relationships.

Common coping skills you can learn in your recovery process include:
  • Diet and exercise
  • How to identify and steer clear of triggers
  • Attending therapy
  • Going to support group meetings
  • Maintaining healthy relationships
  • Practicing relaxation and stress management techniques, such as yoga and meditation
  • Keeping a sobriety journal
  • Becoming a recovery sponsor for other addicted individuals

What Else Can You Do to Cope?

People with addiction can use many other coping skills to smooth the pathway for your sober lifestyle. It boils down to what makes you happiest and healthiest, as well as what suits the way you like to do things. It will be entirely up to you to determine what you enjoy doing, and how to exercise your options.

It’s also helpful to prepare yourself when you know you’re going to be in a stressful situation, or an environment with lots of triggers. Make a list of things that are stress-relief outlets for you, and revisit this list periodically to make sure you are engaging in self-care. Treat yourself to things like delicious meals, massages or anything else that soothes you and helps you remain calm.

Welcome to Your New Life

The only way to start fresh is to commit to making a change. At Canyon Crossing, we are here to help you experience long-term freedom from drug and alcohol use. Our women’s-only treatment programs provide gender-specific recovery that recognizes our clients’ unique psychosocial needs and helps them become well-rounded individuals. If you’re ready to learn more, contact us today.

Friday, May 17, 2019

Overcoming Addiction: When Willpower Alone Isn't Enough

You may see yourself as a strong-willed person who has accomplished a lot in life through your dedication and determination. However, even people who have successfully exerted their will to attain educational or career goals find themselves baffled when they can’t will themselves to quit using drugs or alcohol.

Unfortunately, it’s a common misconception that people with a substance abuse disorder can walk away from drugs or alcohol if they just use enough willpower. If you’ve tried and failed to overcome your addiction using willpower alone, it’s not your fault.

When Willpower Isn’t the Answer

The most fundamental thing to realize about addiction is that it isn’t the result of a series of bad decisions or a lack of moral fiber. It’s a chronic and progressive disease. Think about it in these terms: Nobody expects people with diabetes or cancer to cure themselves through sheer willpower, so why would you feel like you are “less than” if you have tried and failed to quit drinking or abusing drugs?

Because of the way addiction changes the brain’s chemistry, all the conviction in the world is fruitless if you don’t follow a process for proper recovery. Indeed, surrendering and admitting you can’t go it alone can help give you the motivation you need to recover successfully.

5 Reasons Willpower Alone Will Not Help You Recover

1. Support is essential. If you believe you can get through this with willpower alone, you’re likely being too stubborn to admit when you need help. In addiction recovery, isolation can be a recipe for disaster. A successful recovery doesn’t take place in a vacuum. You cannot expect to regain your mental and physical health completely on your own, nor should you try to.

2. You’ll need daily reinforcement. You’ve likely heard someone say, “There are no days off in recovery” – and as you’ll discover, there’s a good reason for that. When you quit using drugs or alcohol, you’ll need tools and coping mechanisms you can use daily to defeat cravings and triggers and silence the tiny voice that keeps telling you things like, “This time, it’ll be different,” or “Just one drink won’t hurt me.” Permanent recovery is an ongoing process that requires re-committing every day to your physical, mental and spiritual healing, and maintaining the skills necessary to build a fulfilling, sober life. Certainly, willpower can be an asset on this journey – but it’s not the only answer.

3. Merely choosing to quit is not going to cut it. Have you ever decided you were going to stop using drugs or drinking and then found yourself unable to keep that promise? Resolve and commitment are not sufficient to make such a significant change and stick to it for the long term. Restoring physical and psychological balance takes time and professional therapy.

Find Your Solution at Canyon Crossing

Changing habits is not easy, and it can feel intimidating. Your strong will can help you know when it’s time to ask for help, and your determination can help you follow through with the actions that will lead you to discover a new way of life.

If you are tired of the way you are living and are ready to make a fresh start, call our admissions specialists today. We provide women’s-only addiction recovery and transitional living in Arizona that can help you regain your sense of purpose.

Friday, May 10, 2019

What Is Cross-Addiction?

Maintaining an addiction is time-consuming. When you are no longer spending hours of your day obtaining and using drugs or alcohol, it can feel as if you have too much time on your hands. In looking for a way to fill these empty hours, you may turn to an activity such as overeating, online gambling or experimenting with a different substance. When you allow that activity to evolve into a compulsive behavior, you have effectively replaced your original addiction with a new one – a phenomenon called cross-addiction.

Who Is at Risk for Cross-Addiction?

Cross-addiction can occur at the same time as you are actively using drugs or alcohol, or you can become vulnerable to this problem after you successfully complete a rehab program. Cross-addiction is a common issue among people in the early phases of their recovery, but even those who have been sober for many years can develop an addiction to another drug or later engage in a habitual behavior that triggers the same reward pathways within the brain. People who have already developed one addiction are more likely to fall into cross-addiction.

Imagine, for example, you have been successfully managing an addiction to opioids. You enjoy having a glass of wine with dinner every night to help you unwind. Over time, this drinking spirals, and every time you encounter a stressful situation, you turn to alcohol as a coping mechanism. While you have remained opioid-free, you haven’t fully addressed your issues with substance misuse.

Cross-addiction doesn’t always involve substance abuse disorders. Some recovering drug or alcohol addicts develop behavioral problems such as a gambling, sex or eating addiction instead of turning to a different drug.

What Causes Cross-Addiction to Happen?

Cross-addiction occurs for a variety of reasons, but often it is accidental and can appear relatively harmless at first. For example, if you come down with bronchitis, your doctor may write you a prescription for an opioid cough medication like codeine. The calm, relaxed feeling this drug gives you makes you want to use it more, eventually leading to a higher tolerance and increased use until it becomes an addiction.

You can also develop a cross-addiction if you have lingering mental health issues, otherwise known as co-occurring disorders or a dual diagnosis. If you have a history of trauma, depression or anxiety, you may start using alcohol and other drugs, or start practicing compulsive habits such as gaming that help ease your emotional discomfort.

A lack of understanding is another reason cross-addiction can occur. For instance, perhaps you already know you are addicted to alcohol, and then your doctor prescribes you benzodiazepines to help manage anxiety symptoms. If you are not aware of how addictive benzodiazepines can be, you may start using them without realizing they may cause you to develop a cross-addiction. To be on the safe side, if you have struggled with substance misuse in the past, you should always mention that to any doctor who treats you. There are many different alternatives to potentially addictive medications, and your physician should know what those are and how to prescribe them in such a way that you stay safe and sober.

Recommit to Your Life’s Purpose

At Canyon Crossing, our Arizona drug and alcohol treatment facility provides a structured environment and a sense of accountability for women who need help finding a path to sobriety. We offer a variety of holistic treatments that help address the root of addiction and related mental health disorders, allowing women to focus on reclaiming full, healthy lives without relying on harmful substances. Our staff are available to answer any questions you may have about beginning your recovery journey with us.

Friday, May 3, 2019

Addiction and the Cycle of Isolation

Addiction can be an incredibly lonely disease. Though you may have initially started drinking or using drugs in social situations, as the illness takes hold, the impulse to withdraw from the rest of the world gets stronger. Why do addicts isolate themselves, and how can you break the cycle?

What Makes Addiction So Isolating?

It’s common for people who have mental health disorders like anxiety and depression to have problems forming relationships with others. Using drugs or alcohol to self-medicate and drown out the inner voice telling you that you are worthless becomes a compulsion so strong, it eventually causes you to detach from anything that gets in the way of their drive to misuse substances and escape the real world.

The further your mental health deteriorates, and the more your disease progresses, the less you will desire to connect with other people. Addiction-related guilt can make you want to avoid facing others for fear they will tell you the uncomfortable truth about how much you are harming yourself. When you are alone, nobody can object to your behavior. Eventually, you build a wall around yourself that nobody else can pass through.

How to Overcome Isolation in Recovery

One of the first steps in the addiction recovery process is learning how to break down the barriers you have built around yourself so you can start to build the strong sober support network you need to succeed in drug and alcohol rehab.

For many people, the built-in peer group they meet by participating in 12-step programs is their first introduction to what this support network will look like, and how it will benefit them. In these groups, you will meet other people who are experiencing many of the same challenges as you are, and who will hold you accountable for achieving your goals and moving in a positive direction. To fully maximize your participation in these groups, you have to get past your mindset of isolation and learn how to ask for help when you feel frightened or hopeless.

Moving Through Isolation

Once you learn to recognize your desire to isolate yourself is a sign that you are regressing to your old habits, there is hope of turning things around. It’s OK to feel like you don’t belong at times. Just don’t let these negative thoughts take over. Not every recovery group will be exactly the right fit for you, so it may take some trial and error before you find a setting where you feel comfortable expressing yourself and sharing your feelings. Be patient and tell yourself it will come with time.

When you are at meetings, practice active listening skills and try to empathize with what others are saying. Look for ways in which their thoughts, feelings and behavioral patterns are similar to yours, and understand that they may feel just as disconnected as you do at times.

When you can look around and realize you have surrounded yourself with a network of compassionate people who have the desire to help you, it will give you the self-confidence you need to end your cycle of isolation. You truly are not alone on this journey, and there is every reason to feel hopeful about what the future has in store.

Drug and Alcohol Recovery for Women

When you are ready to accept that you need help for your drug or alcohol addiction, Canyon Crossing Recovery is here for you. At our accredited women’s-only treatment facility, we offer a 12-step approach to therapy, in addition to our well-rounded holistic care options. Contact us today to learn about beginning your recovery journey here.

Monday, April 29, 2019

A Client’s Perspective on a Women’s Only Treatment Program

client perspective women treatmentBeing in a woman's only treatment center has really made my connection to my womanhood and girl power stronger. Being alongside women who have conquered death essentially and have also been given a chance to fight for their lives has been such an empowering experience. Women are bad ass! Sometimes it is a challenge, when you put 20 girls into a confined space, but it really gives you a chance to embrace all it means to be a woman and a woman in recovery!

- Client A

Men were a great distraction for me - so when my mom told me in the car that I was on my way to an all women’s treatment center I was not very happy about it. When I first arrived I was not very comfortable with being around so much feminine energy, but now that I've been here for a couple of months - I can honestly say it is the best thing that's ever happened for me. I've been given the opportunity to really heal in an environment that allows it. I have been to other co-ed centers and I didn't get half the amount focus on my inner issues as I am here. I'm becoming an empowering woman who holds herself with grace... and I never knew that person was inside me all along.

- Client B

Canyon Crossing has done miracles in my life. When I first heard that Canyon was only women - I was not a fan. "I don't get along with girls that well," was the first and only thing I said for a little. After getting here and meeting all the girls I was still a little weary about it. As time went on I learned to tolerate it, then like it, then absolutely love and appreciate all the women here. They have been through all the laughs, smiles, tears, breakdowns, and even the snotty cries. I actually trust these women. Being in an all women’s treatment center has been the best choice for me. I have been in co-ed treatment centers before and I just wasn't comfortable letting all my emotions out in front of males and females in a mixed setting. Being here also teaches that we as women don't need men all the time. I love these women and I know they love me too. These women will always have my back and I will always have theirs. Canyon Crossing is full of women with integrity and grace, will help pick you up when you fall, and will love you till the end. Lets just say that I am more than happy with the decision that I made to come to an all women's treatment center.

- Client C

I have enjoyed being in an all women's program because I have learned how much I have in common with every women I meet. I have learned to focus on our similarities and not our differences. I have learned how to have safe and loving relationships with women when in the past I have been afraid to start relationships with women. The benefits of this program are learning that women are kind, safe, and loving.

- Client D

Friday, April 26, 2019

Letting Go of Shame in Recovery

Guilt and shame are normal human emotions – nobody’s perfect, and everyone has regrets in life. How you react and respond to shame is key, however, because if you can’t learn to let go, these feelings will weigh you down, preventing you from realizing your true potential.

We don’t get a chance to go back in time and do things differently. That’s why the best thing you can do to stay healthy is to accept that fact and keep moving forward. Doing so is vital to your growth as a person. With that in mind, here are some ideas for getting past guilt and shame in recovery.

Moving Past the Shame Cycle

Recovering from an addiction often involves feeling guilt for what how you behaved in active addiction, and shame for allowing yourself to make decisions that harmed yourself or others. If you try not to think about these mistakes, it can lead to a shame cycle that traps you in feelings of worthlessness.

The first step to breaking out of this downward spiral is to make a written list of all the mistakes you believe you made. Then, go back over the list, and next to each item, write down at least one lesson you can learn from them. Next, do at least one positive thing each day to cancel out negativity from your past. The antidote to shame is pride. If you do things that make you feel good about who you are today and who you will become in the future, your pride will gradually chip away at your shame.


You can’t heal and rebuild your life if you don’t learn how to forgive yourself. Most of us are our own worst critic, so the process of self-forgiveness isn’t something you can accomplish overnight. However, there are steps you can take to help it go more smoothly.
  • Take ownership of your actions: Your addictive behavior probably hurt some of the people who care most about you. Hold yourself accountable and apologize. You’re not the same person today as you were when you were letting your addiction control your life. There’s still time to make things right with your family members and friends.
  • Seek therapy: A therapist can help you learn to understand and process your emotions. Identifying the root cause of your addiction can help you understand why you behaved the way you did, and unlearn the unhealthy coping mechanisms you developed as someone with an addiction.

How to Get Over Guilt

As hard as it may be for you to accept, guilty feelings represent a step in the right direction. They mean you are aware of the times you did something wrong. Now that you are admitting to yourself where you went astray, learn to embrace those mistakes as learning experiences that are shaping you into a better person. Yes, it can be difficult to learn from your mistakes, but that is not an excuse to stop trying.

Like learning self-forgiveness, getting over guilt takes time. Start by exploring what is making you feel guilty, and whether there is a logical reason for you to feel guilt over it. Maybe the guilt is valid, but it’s also possible for it to be all in your mind, and something you’re beating yourself up over for no reason. Write it down or talk through it with your therapist. Once you scrutinize your guilty feelings, you’ll be able to decide how to put them behind you and take the appropriate steps to heal.

Your New Life Is Ready to Begin

At Canyon Crossing, we believe there are always reasons to be hopeful about what tomorrow will bring. When you choose to start your recovery at our women’s-only drug and alcohol rehab facility, you will discover the benefits of holistic therapy in a serene desert location that gives you time and space to grow as a person. Contact us to learn more about admissions.

Friday, April 19, 2019

Pitfalls to Avoid in Early Recovery

The disease of addiction presents many paradoxes, not the least of which is that recovery becomes easier when you begin to accept how challenging it can be. Managing your illness involves tremendous emotional fortitude as you recommit to the process every day. Because this new path presents so many challenges, you can expect to encounter speed bumps or periods where things aren’t going as well as you’d hoped. Here are four of the most common obstacles to avoid in the early stages of recovery, along with how you can avoid them.

Pitfall 1: You expect too much too soon.

Substance misuse disorders revolve around the idea of immediate gratification. People turn to drugs and alcohol because they believe it will help them solve problems and feel better about themselves right away. However, achieving long-lasting success takes time with any endeavor, and that is especially true of addiction recovery. Sobriety is a process that takes re-committing yourself with the dawning of each new day. You will need to make peace with the fact that it doesn’t happen automatically.

Pitfall 2: You constantly compare yourself to others.

According to social comparison theory, it’s human nature to use other people as a yardstick for your life. You may look at others, assume they’ve figured it all out and get frustrated when you can’t say the same about yourself. However, all you can see about those other people is the superficial details of what they are presenting to the world. You have no way to know what they are going through or what issues they may struggle with in their private lives. The most reliable way to judge your progress is by looking inward.

Pitfall 3: You aren’t living in the moment.

Focusing on the here and now – without dwelling on past mistakes or worrying about what might happen down the road – is an essential part of mental health. Think about what you can accomplish today to hold yourself accountable and make it easier for you to stay on track. It’s OK if the only thing you can do right now is something small. Those baby steps add up.

Pitfall 4: You take on too much, too soon.

You’ve finally started working on your health and happiness, and are starting to see the benefits, both mentally and physically. But just because you feel markedly better, that doesn’t mean you should bite off more than you can chew. Early recovery is a time to look after yourself and put your best interests first. De-prioritize anything that isn’t essential to your recovery. By doing so, you’ll take some of the pressure off your shoulders and have fewer burdens weighing on your mind.

You’re Worth the Effort

Every journey in life requires time and work to succeed. Giving it your best every day, especially in the earliest phases of recovery, will help you achieve significant results. Avoiding these four mistakes and continually committing to the process of recovery and self-improvement will help you reap the rewards.

If you are looking for a qualified, caring treatment facility where you can get your life back on track, contact us at Canyon Crossing. As Prescott, AZ’s leading women’s-only drug and alcohol rehab center, we help our clients rediscover their hope and sense of purpose.

Friday, April 12, 2019

Do You Need a Holistic Treatment Program?

Alternative therapies have become an increasingly popular and mainstream option in the medical community. According to the Mayo Clinic, more than 30 percent of U.S. adults report using complementary therapies to treat illnesses, and the disease of addiction is no exception.

People develop addictions for a variety of reasons. Some people turn to drugs and alcohol to alleviate physical challenges, such as post-surgical pain. Others might use these substances to cope with difficult emotions or to self-medicate when they are feeling anxiety or depression. Many people seeking treatment for a drug or alcohol problem benefit from holistic rehabilitation programs that treat a full spectrum of issues. Holistic rehab differs from traditional therapy because it focuses on addressing the mind-body-spirit connection to heal people from addiction and provide a stronger foundation for long-term sobriety.

The Holistic Treatment Difference

People who struggle with substance abuse often have unique, complex needs. A treatment plan that focuses on improving all three areas of health and helps restore both mental and physical equilibrium has the best chance of helping you attain and preserve your sobriety.

No component of health is isolated from the others. For example, if your emotional health is suffering, it will begin to take a toll on you physically as well, and vice versa. Holistic drug and alcohol rehab will work to heal each of the three components of health and teach you smart strategies for managing stress and anxiety so you can prevent a relapse.

Who Is a Good Candidate for Holistic Treatment?

Almost anyone can benefit from getting help at a holistic or alternative rehab center. The only requirement for attending is a willingness to work on your recovery.

Holistic addiction programs are known for their calming and restorative qualities, which make them an excellent supplement to traditional 12-step recovery and cognitive behavioral therapy. Options in a holistic therapy program include yoga and mindfulness meditation, spiritual retreats, equine therapy and more.

How to Find the Right Holistic Rehab Program

Many drug and alcohol rehab centers offer some form of holistic treatment options. The key to finding the right one for you is to look for one that will tailor your rehab experience to your specific needs and addiction history.

Once you find holistic addiction rehab programs whose offerings and philosophy align with the approach that makes you feel comfortable, try to visit the centers in person if possible. The more comfortable the environment makes you feel, the higher the likelihood you will be motivated to complete your recovery there.

Holistic Recovery in Prescott, AZ

Because effective addiction treatment should address the entire individual and not just the behavioral component of the addiction, finding a program that focuses on the mind-body-spirit connection for addiction rehab can be a life-changing way to begin your path to wellness.

At Canyon Crossing, we believe in helping women with addiction problems rediscover their possibilities in life by treating the root of the issue with programming that addresses each client’s particular needs. You have the potential to heal from your addiction and make the most of your life. Reach out to us today to learn more about starting your recovery here.

Friday, April 5, 2019

When Trauma Leads to Addiction

When someone has an addiction, the most common question their friends and loved ones ask is, “Why did you let this happen?” Many people incorrectly assume addiction is the result of a character flaw or a moral failing. However, the truth is that nobody starts using drugs or alcohol with the goal of developing a substance misuse disorder.

Addiction is a chronic disease, and just like no one would choose to get diabetes or cancer, people who become addicted didn’t consciously decide to develop a drug or drinking problem. A series of circumstances outside their control had to occur, including experiencing traumatic events.

Trauma and Substance Misuse Disorders

Unsurprisingly, trauma is one of the leading causes of substance use disorders. Study after study has shown the vast majority of women who become addicted have suffered violence, abuse and other forms of trauma. The underlying reasons behind the link between trauma and addiction are complex and still in need of more research, but understanding this connection and treating addiction and trauma as co-occurring disorders can help restore normalcy to a life that has become derailed by both.

What Causes Trauma?

Trauma is a psychologically fascinating diagnosis because there are multiple causes, and it affects each person differently. For example, some combat veterans return from the battlefield with sound emotional health, while others struggle with PTSD for years. Or, you and your friend could both be victim to a mugging that deeply affects you, but rolls right off your companion’s back.

That’s why it is crucial to understand the causes of trauma, some of which include:
  • Sexual abuse
  • Participating in, witnessing or being the victim of violence
  • Domestic abuse
  • Near-death experiences
  • Severe weather events
  • Childhood abuse
Just as everyone reacts differently to potentially traumatic events, everyone uses different coping mechanisms – including drug and alcohol abuse – to process complex emotions, which explains some of the varied connections between trauma and addiction.

Addiction and Trauma as Co-Occurring Disorders

If you are struggling with the dual burdens of addiction and trauma, the first priority is to reclaim your life with an accredited treatment program that provides the full continuum of care. Treating the addiction or the trauma as if they are isolated problems will not be productive in the long run. You need to address the roots of both to deal with how trauma affected your mind and body. Substance misuse isn’t an add-on to trauma; the two disorders are intertwined.

People who suffer from both addiction and trauma should come to terms with the fact that healing is not a quick fix. You need to work toward overcoming your addiction and addressing the problems that led you to start misusing drugs and alcohol, which doesn’t happen overnight. It takes a holistic and compassionate approach to understand and treat both challenges simultaneously.

Accredited Women’s-Only Treatment in Prescott, AZ

Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing therapy is a proven approach to trauma recovery that forms an essential foundation of Canyon Crossing’s dual-diagnosis program. To learn more about the benefits of treating women’s trauma and addiction simultaneously, reach out to us to verify your insurance coverage and put your health and happiness first.

Monday, April 1, 2019

Personal Thoughts, Stories & Reflections From People In Early Recovery: Part 15

recovery When I first came into the program, I would have said that being perfect and what others thought about me were the most important things. I was on the “isn’t-it-impressive” path; focused solely on making others proud and ensuring that I had their admiration. As far as appearances went, my life looked great and right on track; I had the corporate job, the boyfriend, the downtown apartment, etc. But in reality, I was miserable; the more I got and achieved, the most lost and alone I felt. I was so focused on becoming who I thought I was supposed to be that I never gave my authentic self a chance to shine. Being in recovery has given me the opportunity to embrace my true self. It has helped me let go of the “impressive” path and embrace my own, curvy, winding, bumpy road. Recovery has showed me that I don’t have to become one thing; that life isn’t a matter of “what do you want to be when you grow up.” I have come to realize that in my life, I want to continue to grow and become many things. I want to be sober, healthy, happy, a mother, a friend, a traveler, an adventurer, a reader, a professional, a student of life, a runner, etc. The beauty of life and of my future is that the list is never-ending.

Client J

Every day I grow stronger in my spirituality and in my sobriety. I grow more grateful each day of where I am now and for all of the small things in my life, which helps me to open my heart to embrace myself, others and life on life’s terms. Walking a path of aligning my morals and values with my behaviors has allowed me to become my best self. I feel a sense of true freedom remembering the true person I am inside without trying to fill myself up with external things and distractions. I am so grateful that I do not have to live the way I was before in order to feel good. I have realized that I have every ounce of strength and comfort that I need right inside of me and I don’t need to run away from anything anymore. I have felt happiness, belonging and love for the first time and it was as simple as working on myself from the inside and taking positive actions. Now I can contribute to life rather than take from it.

Client K

Sobriety has taught me the importance of love. Without love, connection, and community life has no meaning. Love makes sobriety enjoyable. Having people to share your experience strength and hope with helps us to know who we are. I learned that even though it can be really scary to love people, it is scarier to live a life of loneliness and disconnection. It is scarier to live my life behind a wall of sadness then it is to put myself out there and be vulnerable. Vulnerability creates connection. Connection creates community.

Client M

I just started working again and I have really been reflecting on what type of employee I was in my addiction. I would always show up to work loaded or hung over. I would sneak off to the bathroom every shift so I could maintain my high so I would be able to just sit through work. I would call out and lie about what I was doing. I really didn’t show up for my employers and the people that counted on me. I wasn’t taking care of my financial responsibilities and that caused a lot of suffering because addiction is pricey and when I wasn’t able to pay for the goods I would get them other ways. I’ve been reflecting on the struggles I had when I was an employee and I’m really grateful for way I show up for myself and for my responsibilities. Its been stressful and really scary being the new kid at work, but I have constant support and love from everyone here to help me and guide me to success. 

Client P

The best thing I’ve experienced in my time here at Canyon is the community. The girls here are all very caring and supportive which really helped me adjust and feel more at home. The staff truly cares about my recovery and help in ways I never thought possible. I’ve only been here a few weeks and I absolutely love it and I wouldn’t want to work on my recovery anywhere else nor with anyone else.

Client S

My first rehab I didn’t plan on getting sober. For the past 3 years it had been me and my brother against the world. I didn’t know who I was without him and my all my validation came from him. My addiction started to branch off from his and I dug my hole a little a deeper as time went on. I was in the middle of my senior year in high school. I either didn’t show up to school or I was late. I was spending all my time and money on my addiction and my brother. For a long time they filled that void that I could not do myself. But one day it just stopped working. My depression got severe, I couldn’t get out of bed, I fantasized about suicide everyday, I couldn’t stop hurting myself. I just couldn’t live my life. Not many people knew about my using. My therapist suggested treatment for my depression and I agreed. I thought “this is gonna be great, I get to work on myself and all the crazy thoughts will go away.” I didn’t know it was treatment for substance abuse until my roommate told me she was an addict. AA meetings were mandatory and I found myself relating to a lot of what people said but I still didn’t want give up the life I had. I didn’t realize that my depression was made worse by my using but when I figured that out I was more than willing to stop. I left treatment happy and full of life. I was so eager to change. I started going to IOP and participating, I felt good. But then my depression came back. I was still stuffing my feelings and my cravings to use. Even though I wasn’t active in my addiction I was still riding along drug deals, acting out in my process addictions, hanging around my brother and our friends while they were using and drinking. I wasn’t working a program and I didn’t have any kind of spirituality. I couldn’t understand that these were the causes of my depression. I thought I was at the choice of getting high or killing myself. I knew I wasn’t okay and that I had to get help but I didn’t know how to ask. I went back to my pretending that I could handle everything on my own. The excuses of this is my recovery and my parents should let me do it on my own, only I know what’s best for me. But soon I couldn’t fake it anymore. Asking for help saved my life.

Client S

Friday, March 29, 2019

A Web of Deceit: Why Addicts Lie

If you love someone who is struggling with a substance misuse disorder, you may be shocked when you catch them lying to you. Even family members you thought could feel comfortable being honest with you about anything will lie and manipulate to hide their drug or alcohol misuse and the resulting cascade of problems it creates. Why do addicts lie, and how does the dishonesty help the addiction thrive?

Addiction Changes the Brain

Nobody starts drinking or using drugs with the intention of ruining their lives. But the potential for addiction lies within us all, and for many, it becomes a trap they cannot escape on their own. But why do so many addicts refuse help? Why would your loving sister, wife or best friend engage in such self-destructive behavior that allows their addiction to deepen?

Think of it like this: Her need for drugs has become an all-consuming factor in their life. If she tries to go cold turkey, the intense cravings or uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms can be overwhelming enough to blot out all rational thought. When someone is physically and psychologically dependent on drugs, they lose sight of other things they once enjoyed doing.

Drugs also lead to poor decision-making ability and a lack of critical thinking skills. Someone who uses opioids every day can become so focused on achieving the euphoric feelings that she eventually forgets about her goals to get a new job or finish a college degree. Likewise, a sober alcoholic may have committed to spend her money more wisely, but after giving in and having one drink, it may feel acceptable to buy a round for the whole bar.

Guilt and Denial Play a Role, Too

If you ask your loved one about her behavior while she is sober, she will probably say she feels ashamed or regretful about the things she has done when drinking or using drugs, and she may even admit she is embarrassed about the addiction itself. These negative feelings will often cause addicts to spiral further into their addiction by turning to their substance of choice to dull the pain, escape from their feelings and help them cover up any regrets in a haze of intoxication.

Recovery Means Peeling Away the Lies

For an addicted person to seek recovery, she must first stop lying to herself and to others about the extent of her disease and the damage it has been causing. This process may take time, and learning to be honest and owning up to the pain and guilt can be one of the most challenging components of healing. At Canyon Crossing, our women’s-only treatment plan includes teaching clients how to take full responsibility for all their actions, as well as how to develop healthy coping mechanisms that will enable them to avoid relapse and live a life of sustained recovery.

When you choose Canyon Crossing for a woman in your life who needs help, she will have the full support of our compassionate team in working through the harm her deceitful behavior has done to herself and others she loves. However, she will eventually feel this burden lifting from her spirit as she recovers her self-respect and integrity.

Friday, March 22, 2019

Gender Differences in Addiction and Recovery

The disease of addiction is a great equalizer. It makes no distinction between race, age, background or gender identity. While the consequences of drug and alcohol misuse are equally devastating to both women and men, studies show there are various factors at play in determining how women and men become addicted, as well as how they respond to treatment.

Drug Abuse in Women vs. Men

The idea that gender could play a role in addiction and recovery is a fairly recent one. As Dr. Tammy Anderson pointed out in her landmark study, Drug Use and Gender, the field of addiction medicine viewed the disease through the lens of male abuse patterns until the 1980s, when researchers began to look into the specific ways drug abuse affected women.

Though men tend to have their first experience with drug and alcohol use at an earlier age than women, after their introduction to these substances, women tend to become addicted more quickly — a phenomenon called “telescoping.” Women also respond to substances differently: their drug cravings can be more intense, which can also make them more prone to relapse, even after they have sought treatment.

What Causes Gender Differences?

While it will require more research to determine the exact root of why women experience addiction differently, one hypothesis is that sex hormones like estrogen can make some women more susceptible to the effects of drugs. The way an addiction affects brain chemistry can also vary between women and men. Finally, the incidence of mood disorders like depression and anxiety is higher in women than in men, which may make women more predisposed to develop addiction.

Specialized Approaches to Treatment

According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, women are less likely to seek adequate treatment for substance abuse than men, and they also face more barriers to treatment, such as social stigma, the need for childcare or losing custody of their children.

Many women who enter addiction recovery find gender-specific treatment programs are more comfortable and less stressful because these programs allow them to focus exclusively on their healing. Within the setting of group therapy, women may feel more open about sharing their feelings regarding delicate issues like mood disorders, sexuality and trauma in a single-gender setting.

In treating drug addiction, women can benefit from comprehensive options that include transitional living, outpatient treatment, family therapy and long-term care. At Canyon Crossing, we also offer a full spectrum of holistic care with features such as:
If you need to seek help in managing drug or alcohol misuse for yourself or someone you care about, contact our admissions team today. As an accredited rehab facility in Prescott, AZ, Canyon Crossing accepts most insurance plans and is dedicated to addressing the specific treatment needs of women.

Friday, March 15, 2019

It’s Time to Spring-Clean Your Recovery Routine

The first day of spring is just around the corner, and you’ve probably already started spring-cleaning your home by clearing the clutter and making a fresh start to the new season. Spring represents a time of rebirth and awakening, which makes it the perfect opportunity to reevaluate your recovery as well.

Spring is the best time of year to take inventory of your recovery routine and assess progress on your goals. It’s also your chance to address any challenges or weaknesses that have come to your attention so you can avoid relapse triggers and stay committed to your sobriety.

Identify Problems

Whether you’re dealing with a loss of motivation, increased stress or a lapse in focus, your first task is realizing where you’ve started to get off-track. Once you’ve done that, you can devote your attention and dedication to fixing it. Here are some examples of the most common areas that tend to trip us up.
  • Mental messes: Failing to set or keep up with personal recovery goals can cause you to lose sight of why you wanted to get and stay sober in the first place.
  • Lack of effort: Not paying attention to your nutrition, fitness plan or sleep schedule can affect your mood and cause you to lapse back into unhealthy habits.
  • Overlooking the essentials: People in recovery need a lot of extra help and support. You’re not alone in your challenges. Ask for help from your friends, therapist or sponsor when you feel yourself slipping.
Many of us are dealing with one or several of these small struggles at any given point. Fortunately, as with most spring-cleaning tasks, you can make incredible progress in a short period by taking them on one at a time.

Assess Your Behavior Over Time

Keeping a recovery journal is one of the most useful things you can do. Not only does journaling have a therapeutic benefit, but it also enables you to look back at past entries and see if you can spot patterns in your behavior or thought processes.

It’s normal to have a difficult day every once in a while, but if you can tell from your journal that the low points far outweigh the high ones, it’s time for a reset. For example, could you meet with your sponsor more often, or begin practicing mindfulness meditation?

As you assess your behavior, your goal shouldn’t be to focus exclusively on weaknesses. Celebrate the areas where you’re doing well, and use them as an opportunity to treat yourself to something like a relaxing massage or a visit to a local art museum or botanical garden.

Choose Healthy New Ways to Reinvigorate Your Recovery

Whether you’ve been sober for two months or two decades, spring has a wonderful way of bringing increased verve and motivation. If it’s time for a breath of fresh air, don’t be afraid to take inventory of your recovery and do a little spring-cleaning. You’ll discover the rewards that come with a renewed commitment to your sobriety.

If you are seeking help for drug or alcohol misuse or co-occurring disorders, reach out to us at Canyon Crossing Recovery. We specialize in helping women in all stages of life rediscover their passion and joy with our variety of therapeutic programs.

Friday, March 8, 2019

Personal Thoughts, Stories & Reflections From People In Early Recovery: Part 14

recovery reflections Since 2018 hit - my life was a mess. Now I can say my life actually feels in balance and on track. Maybe not the track I pictured a few years ago, but still on track and heading up. Two to three years ago I pictured a loving marriage and promising career with a few positive additions on the side, such as pets, traveling, etc… but now learning to love my self and accept my past seems like the right track. Maybe there’s no traveling or loving marriage, but I do have loving friends while I go through my complicated divorce. As for traveling, I have been lucky to go to many places I never even dreamed of such as the destinations we hike and I have been able to go to places I only hoped to visit like Fear Farm for Halloween. Now pets can be tricky - I get to play with dogs who are brought by families and work with horses during equine therapy - and there always is the chance to pet a dog being walked around town. I cant wait to see how 2019 feels balanced and on track.

- Client A

Early in recovery, I was immediately drawn to the program because of the hope shared from others. The laughter and happiness was contagious. Being able to come out of such a dark place and share with other people who had gone through similar struggles was comforting. It has taken me months to realize that I don’t trust anyone, but slowly I am healing from things that I haven’t wanted to address in treatment before.

- Client B

For the last 4 years or so, I’ve either been in early recovery, or I’ve been drinking and using. I’ve learned that I haven’t lost anything that I’ve learned from each experience in recovery. If I had a business card, it would state: Collector of Experiences, Student of Earth. Every time I return to recovery, I am faced with skepticism and questioned about “what will be different?” In the past, I have been so focused on answering these questions perfectly, on convincing everyone that I have it all together, that I lost myself in this process. I became those answers. I created walls and boundaries for myself, I constructed a cage of perfection to live in. I have always kept myself safe inside these artificial bounds; the addict, the victim, the tortured artist, the rescuer, the free thinker, the rebel. What would life be like if I were to step outside the walls I’ve built for myself and drop these labels? I could be free. I would be free. Instead of living a life based on fear of all the ways the world and all of it’s people could hurt me, I could move through it as I please. I have enough experiences of drinking, using, and avoiding pain and hurt to understand that they only bring more pain. I’m a slow learner and it’s taken me a while, but it’s a pretty solid foundation of understanding. Just as I chose to avoid pain for so many years, I know now that there is another choice. I can choose to bust down the walls. It’s time for some new experiences. The only way out is through.

- Client C

I was in a very broken state of mind while knee deep in my alcoholism. I didn’t know there was any other sort of happiness to be experienced in life. I was living in a ghost of a human shell. I had family that didn’t want to be around me, I was living homeless, not eating, and the list goes on. What pains me the most is that I lost a career that I loved dearly and I was in my last year of finishing my bachelors degree. All of this thrown down the drain and I was drowning. When I was afforded the opportunity to be shown a better life, a life a sobriety and the rooms of AA. I couldn’t be more grateful. I live a life now that I smile when I wake up in the morning and the first thing on my mind is the simple pleasures like where is my coffee and and excitement for what the day brings. I get to rebuild my life with 10x the motivation to succeed then ever before because I know what its like to survive.

—A Bad Ass Woman In Recovery
- Client D

When I first got into the rooms I thought happiness was made up
because I hadn’t been in so long.
but when I looked around,
I saw that it was all around.
 in the smiles on the faces, in the laughter in the air, in the serenity
I could see and feel everywhere.
the life in their eyes
transformed the life in mine.
I saw that it was possible
to get to the other side.
since being here, I have realized
that happiness is not the destination;
it’s the attitude you choose to take along for the ride.
if I’m not going to be happy here,
I’m no more likely to be happy anywhere.
I’ve found this to be true.
it’s a mindset I’ve gained. of trust, of gratitude.
in every moment we choose between
accepting life with love or with fear
either way, come what may.
I’m trying this thing where I choose to choose love,
every time.
and with that, with my Higher Power here,
happiness is near.

-Client E

I read somewhere, “To the degree that we seek to control, we feel out of control.”
-The Breslov Haggadah

“Understand that life can only be lived,”
(-The Breslov Haggadah) is another.
Acceptance is the answer to all of my problems today.
All I can do is be.
All I wish to be is me.
Today - I have the power to do so.

Getting sober this time around has given me more than I could’ve ever imagined. With each day that passes I can see all different promises coming true in my life. I’m also able to be grateful for even the little things in my life today. I just got 9 months sober which is the longest time I’ve had & it feels so much better & different this time. I have a whole change of mindset around everything including that I actually have the drive & motivation to want to be sober & stay sober too. I’m definitely looking forward to all there is to come.

- Client F

Early recovery is an exciting place to be. The dark cloud that consumed me in my active addiction is lifting. I’m able to see more clearly and experience the world differently than I have in years. It’s also scary to be so new to recovery. I’m working on building up strength in my sobriety but am vulnerable to temptations caused by my addiction. I’m using my fear of relapse to motivate myself to stay sober. 

Being newly sober, I’ve struggled to find a healthy balance of fear and acknowledging the severity of my disease while also being self-confident and empowered to move forward in my recovery. I believe that I have a lot to look forward to if I keep doing the ‘next right thing’ and putting my recovery first.

- Client G

I used to always think I was different than most people. I never thought of even calling myself an alcoholic or addict, I thought I just found a way to deal with life. I have accepted the reality of being addicted and having to push through the darkness to get to the light. I have learned that I cant control people, places, or things - I know how to surrender truly, to have forgiveness, and to see my part in all situations. I was recently told people around me can see the light on, inside of me and they can see a strong woman full of wisdom. Which is definitely one of the biggest compliments I have ever gotten. When I first came into Recovery I was dead on the inside, I was done with life. I have always believed in God and now he is fully back in my life and he never left me to begin with. I am so strong inside now I continue to fight for my life so I can be the woman and mother I always knew I was inside. I can differentiate my mental illness and addiction from the real me. It is such a blessing to have the fire back to live and to help others. I look at my addiction as a blessing and my mental illness as a way to make me stronger. When it felt like it was over for me it was only the beginning to this beautiful thing I call life.

- Client H

I used to hate calling myself an alcoholic or an addict. I didn’t want a “long term label,” and alcoholic seemed like too much of a commitment. I used that excuse as a way to not look at myself and my actions for a long time, but my actions kept repeating and the consequences of my actions weren’t going away. I couldn’t continue to hide myself from everyone and wait for things to “turn out ok.” Early recovery has been the hardest and most rewarding experience that I’ve been through. It truly is about changing and being willing to push myself out of my comfort zone. I’ve dealt with trauma that I didn’t think I had, I’ve bonded with people in a way I never imagined, and I’ve been truly looking at myself. It can be tedious and hard, but the freedom that I’m gaining in return is unlike anything I’ve ever experienced. After all, nothing changes if nothings changes.

- Client I