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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.