Addiction is a widespread and detrimental issue. In 2019, an estimated 20.4 million Americans were diagnosed with a substance use disorder (SUD), and only 10.3% of that number sought and received treatment. The negative consequences of substance use are vast and far-reaching, impacting not just the individual user but also their families, friends, and communities. Addiction is a powerful disease. It takes over your life, controls your thoughts and feelings, and feels impossible to break free from. But recovery is possible. If you are struggling with an addiction, know that there is hope. Here are steps you can take to start your journey to recovery:
Reach Out for Help
The first step toward recovery is to reach out for help. It can be difficult to do this, but it is important to remember that you are not alone. Many people care about you and want to help you overcome your addiction. Many resources are available to help you, including therapists, hotlines, support groups, and treatment centers. Likewise, you could also build a support system you can rely on when it gets too hard to cope. This could involve family, friends, or even a therapist. These people can offer understanding, encouragement, and accountability as you take steps towards recovery.
Stopping and Dealing With Withdrawal
Simply acknowledging that you have a problem is not enough—you must also be willing to make changes in your life if you want to recover. This means giving up any unhealthy behaviors or activities contributing to your addiction. For instance, the use of drugs is often accompanied by paraphernalia. So if you want to turn away from drug addiction, one of the things you can do is toss away any lighters, pipes, or other objects associated with drug use. Once you stop using, you may start experiencing withdrawal symptoms, especially if you’ve been using it for a long time. This is normal and part of the detoxification process. However, it is important to seek professional help if you are struggling with withdrawal. You can avail a drug detox program where you will be guided by medical professionals towards getting rid of all the toxins in your body while reducing your withdrawal symptoms. With their help, you can get through this challenging period and start on the road to recovery.
Focus on Your Physical Health
As you recover from your addiction, focusing on your physical health is important. Drug and alcohol abuse can take a toll on your body, and you must give it time to heal. Eating a balanced diet, getting regular exercise, and getting enough sleep are all important for maintaining physical health. In addition, you can do some specific things to help your body recover from addiction. For example, suppose you smoked cigarettes as part of your addiction. In that case, you may want to consider taking vitamin supplements to help repair the damage to your lungs. If you abuse drugs intravenously, you may be at risk of contracting hepatitis or HIV/AIDS. Getting tested for these diseases and taking precautions to prevent them is important to improving your physical health. Focusing on your physical health gives you the best chance of fully recovering from addiction.
Find A Hobby Or Activity That Makes You Feel Good
An often overlooked step in overcoming addiction is finding an activity or hobby that makes you feel good outside of using drugs or alcohol. This could be anything from hiking to painting to playing an instrument. You can also try new things you’ve always wanted to do but never got the chance to try. Finding an activity that makes you happy will help reduce stress and give you something positive to focus on as you work towards recovery.
Take it One Day at a Time
Recovery is a process, not an event. Relapse is common in addiction recovery, but it does not mean that you have failed—it simply means that you need to readjust your plan and recommit to sobriety. If this happens, you can get back on track by reaching out to your support system, attending therapy, and focusing on your physical and emotional health. The most important thing is to never give up on yourself and always keep moving forward towards recovery.
Overcoming addiction is no easy feat, but it is possible with hard work and dedication. Taking the first initiative towards recovery is often the hardest part, but it is also the most important. Remember to take things one day at a time and give yourself credit for every accomplishment- no matter how small it may seem!