Staying Sober During the COVID-19 Lockdown

For many people who are in recovery you may be wondering if you can handle all of this self-quarantining due to the COVID-19 outbreak. In fact, much of the lockdown may remind you of your using days – isolated from the rest of the world and trapped in your own thoughts. 

Confusion, frustration and fear of future is affecting the whole world and you are inundated with news and opinions on social media… you’re fighting much more than just the battle with the coronavirus itself. All of this may lead you to question, “how can I stay sober at a time like this?”

Fortunately, the recovery tools look strangely familiar to what sober people have used and it’s prepared most of us to face such difficult situations. Maintaining sobriety under the coronavirus lockdown is certainly within the realm of possibility and even when under the pressure of isolation, you can still end up triumphant and live sober for another day. Here’s how.

  1. Use your experiences with withdrawal as motivation

Change and scarcity are the two key ingredients of withdrawal. People in recovery looked at withdrawal right in the eye and managed to press forward. Imagine if you could do it then, with a substance that you were more than physically addicted to, you can most certainly do it now. Withholding from things you think you needed, especially in isolation, can prove hugely advantageous during these trying times.

  1. Reaching out to other people

One aspect of recovery is about creating genuine connections with other people. This meant ditching the mask that says “I’m fine! I’m totally alright”, and opening up to individuals who share the same experiences (Alcoholics Anonymous comes to mind). Sharing your struggles, fears, and needs with like-minded people can teach you that being vulnerable is okay. At a time like this, the simple conversation of staying sober can help you steer clear from familiar triggers like stress, emotions, HALT (hungry, angry, lonely, tired) and the like.

  1. Replacing bad habits with healthy ones

A lot of our time right can be spend scrolling through social media, laying in bed all day, and just generally being unproductive. This can contribute to unhealthy thoughts and influence your approach towards your recovery. Rather than just letting time pass, think about how you can make better use of your time like joining online meetings or working out. Such activities can drastically reduce your stress levels and restore a sense of balance in your daily schedule which is something we all need when we’re quarantined all day long.

  1. Treat your home as a safe harbour

Being under quarantine can seem like both a blessing and a curse, but only if you see it as such. Think about your home as a safe harbour where you can recoup and recover. You’re far away from toxic friends, acquaintances, and other people that might cause you to suffer from relapse. Sure, being isolated does have its own challenges, but it’s certainly much easier to deal with than having to go through risky situations.

  1. Take control of what you can control

With all of the attention-grabbing headlines, it’s easy to get distracted and lose focus on your recovery. While we can’t control the pandemic itself, we can control how we react to the situation and how we can take ownership of our decisions. For example, you can choose not to use social media when all you see are images of beer bottles or, you can stop reminiscing about your previous alcohol experiences when you’re lying in bed. Take control of what you can control and never let the circumstances dictate your choices. It will help you progress greatly in your journey towards long-term sobriety.

  1. Stay fixated on your goals

Recovery is more about shaping your future than fixing your past. And while the global pandemic might have thrown a wrench in achieving your goals, it’s important that you never lose sight of them. What are your reasons for maintaining sobriety? What do you plan on doing after all this quarantine is over? These are some important questions worth pondering and ones that will help clear your mind off of any unwanted distractions.

At the end of the day, it’s about approaching your sobriety the same way you do with the coronavirus pandemic; take it one day at a time. There are far too many unknowns for you to overthink about and if you let the current headlines distract you, you may lose sight of your true perspective. Going into bed knowing that you made it without a drink is a small victory worth celebrating as you prepare for the next day. If you at any stage feel uncomfortable or feel like you need to speak with someone, get in touch with Calm Rehab Bali who is a leading drug and alcohol rehab centre.

 

What You Need to Know About Non-Substance Addiction

When people hear the word addiction, they often associate it with substances like illicit drugs and alcohol. In broader terms, addiction can develop into anything that isn’t substance-related like food, gambling, gaming, shopping, and more. This type of addiction is known as non-substance addiction. When a person engages in these activities, they find it difficult to stop despite their negative effects. It can interfere with a person’s daily life and even put them in unsafe situations.

Non-substance addictions can cause physical, emotional, psychological, and even financial distress. Knowing the symptoms of a non-substance addiction is crucial to preventing serious harm and helping the person regain control of their life. In this article, as a leading rehab centre in Bali we’ll be discussing what non-substance addiction is all about and how you or your loved one can overcome this behaviour.

Symptoms of non-substance addiction

A person with non-substance addiction is someone who frequently engages in activities without fear of the consequences. For example, a person who’s addicted to gambling may continue to spend all their savings or a person who’s addicted to gaming may sit for hours on end without thinking about their physical health. Symptoms of non-substance addiction may include: 

  • Continuous engagement in risky or troublesome behaviour
  • Impaired decision-making skills
  • Strong cravings to engage in activities
  • Strained relationships (both work and personal)
  • Conflicting emotional response

Causes of non-substance addiction

Most health experts around the world describe addiction as a disease that affects a person’s brain activity. The person’s reward, motivation, and memory systems have been altered in a way that brings physical and emotional satisfaction whenever they participate in addictive behaviour. This feeling of excitement or “rush” is what keeps a person from continuing their bad habits despite the negative outcomes. Prolonged engagement in such activities unlocks a series of euphoric feelings and strange behavioural characteristics that make them even more addicted.

Diagnosing a non-substance requires the help of a medical or mental health professional. The person undergoes a thorough assessment conducted by a team of psychiatrists, psychologists, and general practitioners. Observe the person for symptoms of non-substance addiction and if they continue to exhibit the symptoms on a regular basis, contact a medical professional immediately for assistance.

Treatment options for non-substance addiction

While most rehabilitation centres are aimed at treating people with substance abuse disorders, there are plenty of treatment facilities out there that offer treatment programs for non-substance addiction. These facilities approach the treatment a bit differently compared to treating substance abuse as they focus on addressing the underlying causes of non-substance addiction. If you know a loved one who suffers from non-substance addiction or you find yourself dealing with this kind of disease, it’s best to reach out to a dedicated treatment specialist as soon as possible.

Each person’s needs are quite different and it requires a thorough assessment from a qualified therapist to determine the right treatment program. Some therapists may recommend treatment that’s similar to substance abuse if the patient exhibits similar symptoms. An effective addiction treatment program for non-substance addiction may include a combination of the following.

  • DiagnosisJust like with substance abuse, there are co-occurring disorders that play a role in affecting the patient’s decision-making. A thorough diagnosis will help identify any co-occurring mental health disorders that contribute to their behavioural addiction.
  • Detoxification Some patients report feelings of insomnia, depression, anger, and panic when they stop participating in addictive behaviour. Therapeutic support by means of detoxification can help ease the patient’s transitional period and improve their capacity to stick to the treatment program.
  • Treatment plan The treatment plan is specific to the individual and this can involve many therapies like cognitive behavioural therapy, group therapy, contingency management, and more. The treatment plan will be based on the patient’s current circumstances, comfort level, and goals for when the recovery is completed.
  • Family supportThe support of families and loved ones can act as a strong catalyst in encouraging a person to undergo treatment. The patient will need every bit of support they can get as dealing with behavioural addiction can be just as difficult when dealing with substance abuse. Family members are encouraged to take part in the treatment program and provide a positive environment where the patient can continue to progress after their treatment has finished.

Non-substance addiction is a serious disease that requires immediate intervention. If left untreated, it can send the person into a downward spiral that’s even more difficult to recover from. If you or your loved one is exhibiting any symptoms of non-substance addiction, don’t hesitate to reach out to a dedicated specialist to help regain control of your life.