Avoiding Relapse with Stress Relief
Stress is a natural response when we face challenging situations. It can motivate us to perform better, but prolonged stress can have negative effects on our mental and physical health. As stated by the American Institute of Stress, stress is a leading cause of many health problems, including heart disease, high blood pressure, depression, and anxiety disorders. This can significantly impact those in recovery and make the risk of relapse that much more prominent.
Stress and addiction are closely linked in various ways. Fortunately, stress relief practices can help you feel more at peace and decrease the temptation of addictive cravings. According to the World Health Organization, around 75% of people with mental health and substance abuse problems receive no treatment, so it's crucial to seek help if the stressful feelings persist, as it can quickly turn into a negative feedback loop of stress and substance use.
For more information on stress awareness month and de-stressing during recovery, our team is here for you. To schedule a consultation, give us a call at (800) 353-4673.
How Can I Live a More Stress-Free Life?
Long-term exposure to stress can alter brain chemistry and increase the likelihood of substance abuse or addiction. Certain stressors (such as traumatic events or even difficult daily tasks and inconveniences) can activate the brain's reward system and lead to a desire for drugs to alleviate negative emotions. However, the relief is only temporary and can lead to a cycle of dependence.
Recognizing and managing stress is crucial for maintaining a healthy lifestyle and staying on track with your sobriety goals. Understanding the connection between chronic stress and drug use can help in developing effective prevention and treatment strategies, such as:
- Identify your stressors: Be mindful of the things that trigger a stress response. Writing down your thoughts and emotions can help you identify patterns and develop strategies to prevent or manage stress.
- Exercise regularly: Physical activity can release endorphins, which can improve your mood and reduce stress levels. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise per day.
- Practice relaxation techniques: Meditation, deep breathing exercises, and yoga can help you calm your mind and relax your body.
- Eat a healthy diet: A balanced and nutritious diet can boost your immune system and reduce the impact of stress on your body.
- Get enough sleep: Lack of sleep can increase stress levels and make it harder for you to manage stress. Aim for 7-9 hours of sleep per night.
Those who implement effective coping mechanisms will be less likely to turn to drugs or alcohol when feeling overwhelmed or stressed. It's important to discover what strategies work best for you so that you have a variety of methods to utilize when stressful situations arise.
Below are some resources that can provide additional support and information:
- National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH): 1-866-615-6464
- National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI): 1-800-950-6264
- Samaritans USA: 1-877-870-4673
Contact Us for Additional Assistance
If you or a loved one is in need of professional care and support, please do not hesitate to reach out to Mount Sinai Wellness Center today. Our dual diagnosis treatment options focus on both mental health and substance abuse, in order to set you up for success during recovery.
For assistance on avoiding relapse with stress relief, consult with one of our team members at (800) 353-4673 today.