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Drug Recovery Struggles and Issues

For almost anyone in drug or alcohol recovery, it often feels like a struggle to stay sober. There are countless issues related with being in recovery that can make it almost unbearable to deal with. Not only are there a variety of related issues including withdrawal symptoms, difficulty expressing emotions and relationship problems, but there can be social adjustment issues as well. Many find their transition back into society extremely stressful and have major anxiety doing otherwise normal everyday activities. After struggling with addiction, one must learn new coping skills that aid them in continuing to address ongoing recovery issues that arise in their lives. A person usually experiences sensations and emotions one has never felt before because they were so used to being under the influence and have had no real feelings at all. In dealing with the reality of their recovery, one may find themselves lost or hopeless and may be burdened with feeling of restlessness, irritability and discontent.


Withdrawal occurs because of how the brain reacts when you become addicted to drugs and alcohol. Simply put drugs and alcohol are brain depressants. They suppress your brain's production of the "happy" neurotransmitters. They deplete your brain of all the good neurotransmitters and replace them with the harmful chemicals contained in drugs and alcohol. At the time that one is induced by the drug, they will fell abundantly happy, however, as soon as the body is off the drugs, it becomes depleted of all its natural happy neurotransmitters. Thus, creating the commonly know "coming down" period.

When you stop using drugs or alcohol, your body can go into some type of a toxic shock. This is what creates the withdrawal symptoms, which in some cases can create permanent damage to one's heart or brain and in many severe cases, even sudden death. Withdrawal symptoms can be classified into three categories: physical, emotional and the worst of them all, dangerous.

Some examples of emotional withdrawal symptoms include: mood swings, heightened anxiety, insomnia or restlessness, irritability, migraines, inability to concentrate, social isolation and even depression. Some physical withdrawal symptoms include (and are not limited to) difficult breathing, nausea or vomiting, increased heart beat or tightness in the chest, sweating, heart palpitations, tremors and diarrhea. The most dangerous symptoms are seizures, hallucinations, strokes or heart attacks.

However, there is a bright beautiful light at the end of this torturous period in your recovery that is called withdrawal. After you overcome the symptoms of the damage that drugs and alcohol did to your brains and body, you can move forth to happy and healthy living.

Simple Rules of Recovery

First of all, you cannot recover from an an addiction solely by stopping drug and alcohol abuse. You recover by creating a new way of life for yourself. This is where you need to implement a series of changes within certain areas of your life that may trigger further substance abuse. When making these changes, remind yourself of certain people places and things that are triggers. Know that if you can stay away from these things, you will be less likely to relapse.
You don't have to change everything in your life. However, it's obvious that a few things and behaviors have been getting you into trouble, and if you continue with these behaviors, trouble is exactly where you will wind up once again. The more you try to hold onto your old life in recovery, the less recovery you will actually do for yourself.

During the time of recovery, one may find it necessary to seek therapy or counseling. There are many types of therapeutic sources available to those suffering from drug or alcohol addiction in the recovery period. One of the most common and least expensive ways to help deal with this stress is by joining your local 12 step recovery program. These programs are most commonly known as AA (Alcoholics Anonymous), CA (Cocaine Anonymous) and NA (Narcotics Anonymous).

In these programs, people share their personal stories about how drugs and alcohol came to control their lives. Learning about others stories can help someone looking for relief from their own addiction. This can help give you examples of how to stay sober and develop friendships with other people looking to live a sober lifestyle too. The people you meet in these groups are oftentimes going through the same situation or very similar situations and you will meet people who have in fact been successful with their recovery. You will learn that recovery is indeed possible and this will help to ease your anxieties. In these groups, you will also learn different recovery techniques and you will never be judged about your addiction. Because of the people sharing their experiences every day, you will constantly be reminded of the consequences and repercussions of your actions when you use drugs or alcohol.

One of the most difficult recovery issues is dealing with that constant wanting to drink or use again. Although many people can help control these cravings by attending meetings, however there are some medical treatments that can be used to halt your ability to drink or use at all. For example, one may find that in therapy they are suggested to be put on a prescription called Antabuse. This medication induces sickness when alcohol is administered into the body. Taking medications such as this one can help you to steer clear of any thought to provoke yourself to drink again as the body will become physically unable to handle it. Use of these medications administered by doctors and therapists have proved to be extremely effective.

Ultimately, because recovery is a personal and unique process, everyone has a different experience. By definition, recovery is a return to a normal state of health, mind, or strength. By following these steps listed in this article, you are on your way to a proud, healthy and productive recovery.