Overcoming an addiction is no easy task. By considering counseling for your addiction, you've taken the right first step. As they say, the first step is admitting you have a problem, and once you have, you can work to fix it.
One of the best ways to combat your addiction is by working with a therapist or a counselor. These professionals can help you overcome your addictions and return you to a sober life that is healthy, productive, and happy. It may be a tough journey, but a counselor is here to help. Keep reading to learn more.
Want To Seek Help And Learn To Control Your Addictions?
Detoxing From Substance Abuse - Information To Know
After recognizing that you have a problem, detoxing yourself from the substances you're addicted to is likely the next thing you'll need to do when it comes to overcoming addiction, and this can be quite challenging. It involves weaning yourself from the drug (or going cold turkey), and withdrawal symptoms can be grueling. Sometimes, they are just a mild annoyance, such as a headache or stomach pain, but other times the symptoms can be much, much worse.
If you plan to detox, it's a good idea to seek the help of a professional. A professional can monitor you and help treat any withdrawal symptoms you may have to increase the chances of a successful detox. An is one of the experts who can help. Addiction psychiatrists focus on evaluating, diagnosing, and treating patients who have an addiction.
After detox, the real challenge begins. Staying off drugs. Our brains are unusual. They will change quickly as they become addicted and become programmed to serve that drug. They won't feel pleasure unless they take the drugs. Even though the drugs are bad for them, they'll still take them.
Once off drugs, the brain can take a long while to recover. It still craves the drug, and it may take weeks, months, or even a year for the brain to revert to its normal function. This is where
drug counseling comes in. Addiction counselors can help you reach your goal of being completely free of the substance you were addicted to—and they can help you to stay that way for as long as possible. An Addiction Counselor Can Help You Understand Your Addiction Behavior And Triggers
relapses happen. You're clean, you have the intention to avoid the substance you were addicted to, and then BAM, the urge comes back, and you give in. Why? Well, one reason may be due to triggers.
Even when you're clean, it takes a while for your brain to recover from the changes the substance made to it. You may relapse thanks to certain triggers that will tell your brain that you need the substance.
You may think, "I'm off the drugs. If I just take it once, I'll feel fine and won't be addicted." But this is usually not the case. Your brain is still craving the drug, and if you take it, it can cause you to lose all the progress you made. This is why it's important to avoid any triggers you may have.
Triggers are different for everyone, but here are a few common types:
Sometimes, a smell can be enough to trigger you. If you're a recovering alcoholic, the scent of booze can make you crave it. This can be hard to avoid in some cases. Every party or even fine dining establishment you go to may have the smell of alcohol, so managing this trigger is hard. You may need to curate your outings to avoid places where there might be alcohol you can smell.
Thinking About The Past Getty/AnnaStills
Sometimes, thinking about your past involvement with drugs can be enough to trigger you. Your mind may romanticize your involvement with drugs. Even if you had a horrible experience that got you on the road to recovery, your mind remembers times when the substances made you feel good, and you may crave the drug again. If your thoughts are what trigger you, counseling can help to turn your thinking around and try to block off any thoughts about those "good times."
If you feel a wave of depression hit you, or feel intense anger or irritation, this can be an incentive to try the drug again. This can be tricky, as some emotions are hard to avoid. We all have our down days and our days where we feel snappy. If you're experiencing these emotions, you must talk to your therapist as soon as possible to repair them. You and your therapist can work on what you can do when these intense emotions hit to bring you back to a calmer state.
A Major Life Change Or Experience
A big change in your life, such as a new job, new living situation, or anything else may trigger a relapse. You must talk to your therapist whenever you are making a transition in life.
Stress is something we all must face, and it can be valuable in helping you solve problems. With that said, stress can be overwhelming, and many may turn back to drugs to kill the pain. If you're feeling stressed, talking to your therapist can help you manage your stress or devise solutions to reduce your stress. Either way, the solution is not to take the drug. You're just going to regret it down the road.
Being Too Confident
Wait, being confident is bad? No, it's a good thing. If you go into drug rehab thinking you can't do it, then you may have less chance of succeeding. Having some confidence goes a long way.
However, there is such a thing as being too confident. This comes in the form of thinking you're clean and you don't need any more professional help. You may have made progress, but you may not be out of the woods—even though you see the exit. Disengaging from your counselor and your plan can cause you to fall back into old habits when you least expect it.
You must have hope and confidence, but also be realistic and realize that having help along the way is important.
Recovering From A Drug Or Alcohol Relapse
If you became addicted, you have probably burned a few bridges along the way. You may have drifted apart from your friends, become estranged with your family, or pushed away people who wanted to help you. To have a good recovery, you need a strong support system, and so a part of recovery is repairing the relationships that went sour.
Sometimes, this means that you have to reach out to your old friends and offer an olive branch. A counselor can help ease your way back into relationships and help you find the right words to prove you're better and want to continue in that direction. If you can't repair your relationships, a therapist can teach you how to make peace with that and find new relationships that will be supportive of your journey.
Relapsing can feel like the tragic end of your recovery journey. You were doing so well, and then you fell. It's okay. Many people slip up a few times before they can get off a substance for good. Whenever you relapse, talk to your counselor. Your addiction therapist is there to tell you why you relapsed, how you can prevent it in the future, and tell you why you shouldn't feel bad about yourself when you slip up. We all make mistakes.
A Therapist Can Help Improve Thoughts And Behaviors
One way you can recover from your addiction is by changing how you think. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), for example, can make you eliminate negative thoughts. If you keep thinking that you can't make a recovery, CBT can help you turn negative thoughts into more positive ones—ones that will help you to continue improving.
There are other forms of therapy as well that can make you change how you think. Aversion therapy, for example, can make you associate the substance you're addicted to with something negative, such as a food you hate or a bad memory you've experienced.
Sometimes, a therapist can help with more than just recovering from an addiction. There may be a reason you became addicted that you didn't even realize. An event in your childhood may have made you more prone to addiction, or a life situation made you crave the drugs you became addicted to. A therapist can help you track down the reasons and make a plan for you to relieve yourself of any past event you may be experiencing.
Online Therapy Makes It Even Easier
Whenever you're struggling with addiction, you sometimes need to speak to someone immediately. Thoughts of relapsing, stress, your current life situation may be plaguing you…if you don't have someone to talk to, you may fall off the wagon. That's where online therapy comes in. Online therapy allows you to talk to a therapist when you need it, and it's great for the awkward hours of the night. For example, if you're struggling at midnight, you can have a chat with a therapist and feel better. If you're in a place where you can't speak, you can always chat with them through text.
The point is that online therapy is there for you no matter when you need it, making it great for addiction counseling. Some situations need immediate help, especially if the risk of relapse is high. A therapist can de-escalate the situation and keep you happy and healthy.
Want To Seek Help And Learn To Control Your Addictions?
These are just a few services an addiction counselor provides. Know that if you are suffering from addiction, there is no shame in seeking help and recovering. You'll come out of it being a stronger person, and you'll feel much better about yourself in the end.
As stated at the beginning of this article, overcoming an addiction isn't easy—and it can be difficult to do all alone. Fortunately, there are therapists trained to work with people as they recover from addiction. They can help you at every stage, going through all the steps with you. They'll even be around once you've kicked your addiction to help you stay on course.
Addiction counselors are available both in person and online. If you choose to seek an online therapist, consider
BetterHelp. BetterHelp is a completely online therapy platform that can connect you with a licensed therapist trained to work with people in your exact situation. Online counseling through BetterHelp is both affordable and convenient. A BetterHelp therapist is ready and waiting to help you get past your addiction and on to brighter days. Therapy Is A Personal Experience
Therapy is a personal experience, and not everyone will go into it seeking the same things. Keeping these things in mind can ensure that you will get the most out of online therapy, regardless of what your specific goals are. If you’re still wondering if
is right for you, and how much therapy costs, please contact us at
. BetterHelp specializes in online therapy to help address all types of mental health concerns. If you’re interested in individual therapy, please reach out to
. For more information about BetterHelp as a company, please find us on:
If you need a crisis hotline or want to learn more about therapy, please see below: For more information on addiction and mental health, please see: SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) SAMHSA Facebook, SAMHSA Twitter, SAMHSA LinkedIn Mental Health America, MHA Twitter, MHA Facebook, MHA Instagram, MHA Pinterest, MHA LinkedIn WebMD, WebMD Facebook, WebMD Twitter, WebMD Pinterest, WebMD LinkedIn NIMH (National Institute of Mental Health), NIMH Facebook, NIMH Twitter, NIMH YouTube, NIMH LinkedIn APA (American Psychiatric Association), APA Twitter, APA Facebook, APA LinkedIn, APA Instagram Get help now: Emergency: 911 National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1- 800-799-7233 National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255) National Hopeline Network: 1-800-SUICIDE (784-2433) Crisis Text Line: Text “DESERVE” TO 741-741 Lifeline Crisis Chat (Online live messaging): https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/chat/ Family Violence Helpline: 1-800-996-6228 Planned Parenthood Hotline: 1-800-230-PLAN (7526) American Association of Poison Control Centers: 1-800-222-1222 National Council on Alcoholism & Drug Dependency Hope Line: 1-800-622-2255 National Crisis Line - Anorexia and Bulimia: 1-800-233-4357 LGBTQ+ Hotline: 1-888-843-4564 TREVOR Crisis Hotline: 1-866-488-7386 AIDS Crisis Line: 1-800-221-7044 Veterans Crisis Line: https://www.veteranscrisisline.net TransLifeline: https://www.translifeline.org - 877-565-8860 APA Youtube Suicide Prevention Wiki: http://suicideprevention.wikia.com