What is SMART recovery?

What is SMART recovery?

SMART Recovery (Self Management and Recovery Training) is an international non-profit organization which provides assistance to individuals seeking abstinence from addictive behaviors. The approach of smart recovery is secular and science-based using non-confrontational motivational, behavioral and cognitive methods. Meeting participants of smart recovery learn recovery methods derived from evidence-based addiction treatments.

Smart recovery emphasizes four areas which they call the 4-point program in the process of recovery. The 4-point program of smart recovery includes: building motivation, coping with urges, problem solving and lifestyle balance. The smart recovery tools used are various types of therapy including cognitive behavioral therapy. Smart recovery does not use the twelve steps like AA or NA and is actually listed as an alternative to AA and the twelve steps. Even though smart recovery is listed as an alternative it is also suggested as a supplement to a twelve step program.

Smart recovery was incorporated in 1992 as the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Self-Help Network, the organization began operating in 1994. SMART recovery is recognized by the American Academy of Family Physicians, as well as the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA). NIDA and NIAAA are agencies of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Smart recovery meetings are free for all wishing to attend, and are intended to be informational as well as supportive. Over 800 weekly smart recovery group meetings led by volunteer facilitators are held worldwide.

Smart recovery meetings are also held in correctional facilities in many states including: Arizona, California, Florida, Indiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin.

In smart recovery there are stages of change, seven of them and these changes are essentially how the smart recovery program works.

  • Stage one of smart recovery change: pre-contemplation: at this stage of smart recovery the participant may not realize that they have a problem.
  • Stage two of smart recovery change: contemplation: the participant of smart recovery evaluates the advantages and disadvantages of the addiction by performing a cost/benefit analysis.
  • Stage three of smart recovery change: determination and preparation: the participant completes a change plan worksheet.
  • Stage four of smart recovery change: action: The participant in smart recovery begins to seek out new ways of handling their addictive behavior. This can include self-help, the support of addiction help groups or professional guidance from a counselor etc.
  • Stage five of smart recovery change: maintenance: At this stage a few months of smart recovery have gone by and the participant in smart recovery’s behavior has been changed and now seeks to maintain their gains.
  • Stage six of smart recovery: Relapse: although it is not inevitable, relapses even in smart recovery are normal and part of the change cycle and if they are handled well can serve as a learning experience in overcoming addiction.
  • Stage seven of smart recovery change: termination: once the participant in smart recovery has sustained a long period of change they may choose to move on with their lives and graduate from smart recovery.

Non 12 Step Rehabs

Non 12 Step Rehabs

Non 12 Step Rehabs are treatment programs that employ other approaches and techniques to treating substance abuse and addiction, instead of the 12 Step approach.

The 12 Step approach, also called the Disease Model, has long contended the maladaptive patterns of alcohol and substance use displayed by addicted individuals are the result of a lifelong disease that is biological in origin. This perspective renders the alcoholic and/or addict essentially powerless over their problematic behaviors and unable to remain sober without the use of a spiritual program that places their problem in a Higher Power, much like someone with a terminal illness are unable to fight the disease by themselves without medication. Behavioral treatment, therefore, necessarily requires individuals to admit their addiction, renounce their former lifestyle, and seek a supportive social network who can help them remain sober. Such approaches are the features of Twelve-step programs, originally published in the book Alcoholics Anonymous in 1939.

Non 12 Step Rehabs apply different approaches such as:

Non 12 Step Rehabs: Person-Centered Therapy (PCT)

PCT is a form of talk-psychotherapy. The goal of PCT is to provide clients with an opportunity to develop a sense of self wherein they can realize how their attitudes, feelings and behavior are being negatively affected and make an effort to find their true positive potential. In this technique, therapists create a comfortable, non-judgmental environment by demonstrating congruence (genuineness), empathy, and unconditional positive regard toward their clients while using a non-directive approach. This aids clients in finding their own solutions to their problems.

Non 12 Step Rehabs: the Cognitive Models of Addiction Recovery

  • Relapse prevention

Four psychosocial processes relevant to the addiction and relapse processes: self-efficacy, outcome expectancies, attributions of causality, and decision-making processes. Self-efficacy refers to one’s ability to deal competently and effectively with high-risk, relapse-provoking situations. Finally, decision-making processes are implicated in the relapse process as well. Substance use is the result of multiple decisions whose collective effects result in consumption of the intoxicant.

  • Cognitive therapy of substance abuse

This therapy rests upon the assumption addicted individuals possess core beliefs, often not accessible to immediate consciousness. The cognitive therapist’s job is to uncover this underlying system of beliefs, analyze it with the patient, and thereby demonstrate its dysfunctionality.

  • Emotion regulation, mindfulness and substance abuse

Emotion regulation in the treatment of substance abuse; mindfulness based approaches

Non 12 Step Rehabs: Behavioral Models

Behavioral therapy lays much emphasis on the use of problem solving techniques as a means of helping the addict to overcome his addiction.

Non 12 Step Rehabs: Holistic Drug Treatment Approach

The perspective of a holistic drug rehab is similar to that of a 12 step rehab: that alcoholism and addiction are a physical, spiritual, and psychological disease, meaning it pertains to the body and the mind. This approach differs from a 12 Step rehab in that it offers many holistic practices to improve spiritual as well as physical and mental health and may include but does not necessarily include the 12 Steps. A few of the practices that are included in holistic drug treatment are but are not limited to:

  • Aromatherapy
  • Ayurveda medicine
  • Natural diet
  • Exercise
  • Counseling
  • Herbal remedies
  • Homeopathy
  • Acupuncture
  • Bodywork
  • Energy-based therapies
  • Prayerful intention

 

 

 

 

Sources:

https://en.wikipedia.org

http://www.nrepp.samhsa.gov

Holistic Drug Treatment vs. Alternative Drug Treatment

Holistic Drug Treatment vs. Alternative Drug Treatment

 

What is Holistic Drug Treatment?

Holistic drug rehab is centered on the belief that individuals battling addiction are people who need and deserve treatment for their entire being, not just their dependence.

First to know what to look for in a holistic drug rehab center you must know the definition of holistic and what kind of practices are under that definition. Holistic means to treat the whole instead of the parts. Holistic practices are those that treat an entire mind, body and spirit. Knowing this holistic drug rehab centers offer things such as; acupuncture, yoga, meditation, aromatherapy, equine therapy, and tai-chi. All of these are holistic practices because they treat the body’s mental, physical and spiritual functions.

Spirituality plays a role in recovery. Clients often turned to substances in order to fill an empty hole. The temporary effects of being high or drunk can make that feeling go away for a bit, but eventually return. The spiritual component to holistic drug rehabilitation can help manifest in clients a new sense of purpose.

One of the ways that holistic drug treatment facilities attempt to attend to the whole person and to individualize care is by providing such alternative treatments—including acupuncture, energy psychology, equine-assisted therapy, neurofeedback, psychodrama, Reiki, somatic experiencing, and massage therapy.

Often times, holistic drug treatment programs are based on a 12 Step program philosophy, which recognizes the importance of having a spiritual foundation in order to begin recovery from addiction.

Holistic Drug Treatment vs. Alternative Drug Treatment

Although they are used interchangeably, alternative drug treatment typically means drug treatment that is wholly different from other modalities of addiction treatment. Holistic programs may offer “alternative” medicine and techniques such as yoga, meditation, acupuncture, and so on. Alternative drug treatment does not promote the 12 Step program philosophies, which recognizes addiction as a combination of physical allergy, mental obsession, and spiritual malady. Alternative drug treatment takes a different approach and seemingly identifies only one or two of these on which to focus.

For example, Narconon is an alternative drug treatment program that consists of six elements: exercise, sauna, supplements, sufficient liquids, regular diet with fresh vegetables, and adequate sleep. It employs courses or “training routines” (TRs) that supposedly rehabilitate drug abusers.

Another alternative drug treatment facility boasts a program of moderation. The approach is to teach clients how to acquire feelings of joy or satisfaction from the more typical activities of life. The goal is not necessarily to have clients stop their drug(s) of choice and/or addictive behavior 100% as is the approach of the 12 Steps and those who treat addiction only as a brain disease.

 

Its program states that it is unlike 12 Step recovery because it offers a wide range of “goal options” specific to the addictive behavior. Each goal requires a different strategy and results in a different outcome regarding the substance or behavior of your concern, from complete abstinence to solely abstinent from the drug(s) of choice, to moderation of the “problem” drug, to reduction of problem behavior to a “less harmful state.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sources:

http://www.psychologytoday.com

http://addictionalternatives.com

www.wikipedia.org

 

Are you addicted to sugar?

Are you addicted to sugar?

Sugar addiction is something most people laugh about. They may joke that they are addicted to sugar in order to rationalize having another slice of cake or piece of candy. And most wouldn’t consider sugar addiction to be as serious as alcohol or cigarette addiction. However, new research suggests that sugar addiction could be a very real thing, and it may be just as strong as an alcohol or drug addiction.

Studies show that humans are programmed from a very young age to crave sugar. And once your body experiences pleasure in response to the sugar, it does not take long to become addicted to sugar. Some common long term effects of being addicted to sugar include weakened immune system, chronic fatigue, hormonal problems, and gastrointestinal issues. Psychological issues, like anxiety and depression, can be made worse by being addicted to sugar.

A study in the 80’s found that eating sugar can release the same “feel good” chemicals that are released when you use drugs of abuse like cocaine and heroin. This “reward system” is the basis for all addiction. Your body releases chemicals in response to something you did, and you instantly want to replicate the feelings of pleasure.

When we eat, the pancreas secretes insulin, which takes the sugar into the body’s cells so it can be utilized. But high carb foods like bread, pasta, cereals, soda, and candy make insulin levels soar and then drop off again quickly. This causes your body to crave even more sugar a couple of hours later. Repeating this high-low cycle of sugar can make your body numb to insulin’s effects, so you need more and more of the hormone to get even sugar levels. Eventually, the cells may become unable to process insulin altogether, which leads to type-2 diabetes.

There are different types of people addicted to sugar. The first type are people who are chronically fatigued from lack of sleep, overworking, and poor nutrition. They tend to reach for caffeine and sugar to combat exhaustion. These are Type 1 sugar addicts.

Type 2 sugar addicts turn to sugar to fuel a fast-paced, high stress life. Those that are addicted to sugar in this category get anxious and irritable when they are hungry due to low blood sugar. They are constantly in a state of fight-or-flight and it causes stress and overtaxes the adrenal system.

The last type of people who get addicted to sugar are women experiencing hormonal fluctuation entering menopause which can cause anxiety, depression, and insulin resistance. This can lead to sugar addiction in some women.

The cure for people who are addicted to sugar is simple: Stop the cycle by cutting out foods that are high in sugars and carbohydrates. It also involves cutting out excessive caffeine intake, and eating more whole, unprocessed foods. Getting adequate sleep is also crucial for those who find themselves addicted to sugar.

At first, withdrawals from sugar and refined carbs can include cravings, headaches, low energy, irritability, and jitters. But experts agree that it usually takes just four to seven days for these feelings to wane.

Sources:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/you/article-2182575/YOU-special-report-Are-addicted-sugar.html

http://abcnews.go.com/Health/Diabetes/addicted-sugar/story?id=10869006

http://www.foxnews.com/health/2011/06/05/addicted-to-sugar-how-to-kick-habit/

Holistic Drug Treatment

Holistic Drug Treatment

Holistic drug treatment offers an alternative to the traditional and standard drug treatment methods used today. Is holistic drug treatment right for everyone? Not necessarily but for some people it can work wonders. At holistic drug treatment an addict or alcoholic gets the benefit of not only having their mind and body healed but also their spirit. Holistic drug treatment also has the added benefit of helping with some issues outside of drug addiction and alcoholism. Holistic drug treatment helps many addicts and alcoholics find a stronger sense of self and well-being in comparison to a program to that only focuses on the physical aspect of their drug addiction.

So what is the difference between holistic drug treatment and standard drug treatment?

Standard drug treatment usually follows the philosophy that drug addiction is primarily and in some instances only a physical or neurological problem. Standard drug treatment that focuses only on treating the physical symptoms and suppressing the urge to use drugs with medications are not set up for long term success and well-being for the addict and alcoholic. A program that uses standard drug treatment protocol doesn’t always address an addict’s or alcoholic’s feelings, desires or any psychological issues that may be going on. Standard drug treatment takes a therapeutic and psychological approach towards treating addiction with things like group counseling and talk therapy (one on one). These drug treatment programs go with the idea that addiction is physical but that the addiction started with something like codependency, depression, feelings of not being good enough and other problems.

A holistic drug treatment plan on the other hand takes the time to address the physical needs but it doesn’t just stop with the physical. Holistic drug treatment takes a look at person’s mental state. For instance, holistic drug treatment looks at the emotions, urges, feelings and treats them as just as much, if not more, of a component to the physical part of the addiction. Most holistic treatments, whether they are for drug treatment or any other kind of treatment, focus on a person’s spiritual side or energy without having any type of religious affiliations. Each person’s individual spirituality is addressed in a way that they are comfortable with. Holistic drug treatment realizes that addiction and alcoholism don’t just affect the mind and body but also the spirit. Holistic drug treatment also treatts the physical addiction and uses things such as group counseling and talk therapy to help the addict and alcoholic deal with why they started using. But holistic drug treatment goes one step further, it treats the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual aspects of people and their addiction, with the thought that they all have equal importance in getting well. Holistic drug treatment will use alternative methods of treatment such as yoga, meditation, sweat lodge, massage therapy, acupuncture, hypnosis and nutrition to focus on treating the entire person instead of just the addiction. Spiritual counseling may even be a part of holistic drug treatment. The purpose of holistic drug treatment is to give someone not only freedom from their addiction and alcoholism but give them freedom as a human being a spiritual being.

Bikram Yoga: Is it a form of natural detox?

Bikram Yoga: Is it a form of natural detox?

Yoga is a mental, physical, and spiritual practice that originated in India. It employs controlled breathing and different physical postures to lengthen and strengthen the spine, increase flexibility, calm the mind, improve concentration, and promote patience.

Yoga in addiction recovery treats the physical aspect of the disease by getting the body back in shape, decreasing heart rate, and increasing levels of certain important neurotransmitters.  Exercise, such as yoga, is an important part of regaining a healthy body and reversing some of the damage that was done during active addiction. It can also improve body image, serve as a positive activity to replace drug use, and set the stage for a healthy lifestyle.

Bikram yoga is a form of “hot” yoga. It consists of traditional poses in a room heated to 105 degrees with a humidity of 40%. An active yoga session at high temperature promotes lots of sweating and makes the body very warm. The theory is that bikram yoga allows a deeper stretching and prevents injury because the muscles are very loose and warmed up. It also claims to increase circulation throughout the body.

Because of the extreme sweating and increase in circulation, Bikram yoga is said to be a form of natural detox, quickly ridding the body of toxins. For drug treatment in particular, this is very helpful. After years of using drugs and drinking, our bodies build up a lot of unwanted toxins. The drugs and drug metabolites that stay in the system can cause the withdrawal stage to last a long time. Natural detox methods like Bikram yoga can speed up the process of getting these metabolites out of your system and helping you to feel better more quickly.

Your skin is one of the best waste disposal systems you have. While it is different from your waste-extraction organs like kidneys or livers, your skin is an equally effective organ for removing waste, especially toxic wastes. When your body heats up and starts to sweat, you shed toxins through your skin.

Although it is a great form of natural detox, there are some risks involved with practicing Bikram yoga. The extreme heat and intense sweating can cause you to dehydrate very quickly, and the risk for dehydration is compounded when you are coming off drugs and alcohol. It is very important to stay hydrated during Bikram yoga, and it is probably not wise to engage in any type of exercise the first week you are off drugs and alcohol. At this point, your body tends to be very unstable and going through the most intense phase of withdrawal. You may be dizzy, nauseous, and tired. Doing Bikram yoga while you are still in a heavy withdrawal state is not recommended. You also may not be sweating like you would in a healthy state, so your body will not be able to effectively regulate temperature. If your body can’t cool itself, Bikram yoga can cause extreme overheating and even heat stroke.

DISCLAIMER/WARNING: Before you practice Bikram yoga, get consent from your doctor.

 

Sources:

http://www.3fatchicks.com/using-bikram-yoga-to-detox/

http://ezinearticles.com/?Hot-Yoga-For-Detoxification-Benefits&id=677421

 

 

Things to Consider in Holistic Drug Treatment

Holistic drug treatment has become increasingly popular in recent years as people have become aware of the benefits of natural medicine. Holistic drug treatment is also very effective because it recognizes that addiction is a whole body disease. It affects your mind, body, and spirit. People who attend drug rehabs that use even one holistic drug treatment are three times more likely to achieve long-term sobriety. Here are some things to consider in holistic drug treatment:

Principles

First you should consider how the holistic drug treatment center defines holistic. Holistic drug treatment is the practice of treating the human body as a whole. It is the idea that all parts of a person- physical, mental, emotional and spiritual- must be healthy and in balance in order for a person to recover from the disease of addiction. Therefore, those who practice holistic drug treatment not only address the physical symptoms of an addiction, they address the mental and spiritual aspects of the disease as well.

Services

Secondly, you should consider holistic drug treatment services that are offered at the treatment center. Holistic drug treatment centers offer treatments such as; acupuncture, yoga, meditation, aromatherapy, equine therapy, and Tai-Chi. All of these are holistic practices because they treat the body’s mental, physical, and spiritual functions.

When looking for a holistic drug treatment center, you should also consider whether the environment outside of the individual treatment sessions conforms to holistic practices. Holistic drug treatment should incorporate a calm, relaxing, and visually pleasing environment.  Holistic drug treatments will not be of maximum value to you are in a stressful, unorganized environment. Addicts and alcoholics are usually coming into treatment to escape their chaotic lifestyle. The goal of holistic drug treatment is to provide a relaxing, calming environment free of negative thinking and negative influences. This peaceful environment aids the recovery of an addicted person by allowing them the space and quietness they need to focus on treatment.

Traditional

Holistic drug treatment should also incorporate elements of traditional treatment. Just because holistic drug treatment utilizes progressive holistic treatments, it does not mean that conventional, proven methods should be abandoned. Holistic drug treatment should combine non-traditional treatment modalities with proven, traditional treatments like counseling and 12-step programs. This combination has been shown to have the highest rate of success in setting a person on the right course for long-term sobriety.

Nutrition

When considering holistic drug treatment, you should also research the nutritional focus of the treatment center. True holistic drug treatment emphasizes a healthy diet, specifically on improving diet as a means to achieving a healthy mind and spirit. Holistic diets incorporate healthy, vitamin rich food and a minimum of artificial additives. A proper diet can return the body and brain to the highest level of functioning.

Every drug addict and alcoholic is different, and holistic drug treatment is not for everyone. Holistic drug treatment requires having an open mind to alternative treatments and recognizing that addiction is not just a physical disease. It calls for recognition of the mind, body, spirit connection and acceptance of holistic concepts and principles.

Naturopathy

 

Naturopathy is an alternative medicine or holistic approach to healing based on the belief of vitalism. Vitalism is the belief that a special energy called ‘vital energy’ guides bodily processes such as our metabolism, reproduction, growth, and adaptation. This naturopathic medicine is defined by principles rather than by methods or modalities. Therefore the main focus of naturopathy is to honor the body’s innate wisdom to heal itself.

 

Naturopathic medicine uses a wide variety of treatments focusing on self-healing. The naturopathy type of holistic healing looks at lifestyle, medical history, emotional tone, and physical features of a person. It could begin with a physical exam if it is found necessary. Through this, naturopathy will create lifestyle changes and approaches that support the body’s innate healing potential. In order to do this naturopathy will use multiple different holistic approaches for healing. One of the main treatments naturopathic medicine uses is a nature cure. Nature cures is based on exposure to the natural elements such as fresh air, sunshine, and water. Spending time out in nature.

 

Now that we know a little bit about naturopathic medicine its good to ask how this can apply for the addict and the alcoholic. From what its known about the disease of alcoholism and addiction it is spiritual along with mental and physical. The disease consists of a mental obsession, and physical allergy and a spiritual malady. Looking at this model of the disease of alcoholism and addiction, naturopathy is a perfect medicine for the treatment of drinking and drug abuse. Many times addicts and alcoholics want an instant fix that includes some kind of pill. They want the instant pills for happiness, calmness, sleepiness, aches, pains and more. Naturopathic medicine treats all this by using the power of one’s own body and mind through what is already available to us naturally.

 

Through eating differently, exercise and spending time outdoors; naturopathy includes that which has been essential to staying healthy since the beginning of time. Going back to this for a form of innate healing due to the body itself is kind of incredible. It’s seen that this form of healing is mentioned as far back as the days of Hippocrates that is the time period of ancient Greece. These basic fundamentals that naturopathy have taken hold of have been a part of our daily lives for many years now, it’s just a matter of utilizing them.

 

For the addict and alcoholic this may give relief to many who haven’t been able to find relief through any other type of medicine. It is also a perfect alternative for those who cannot take narcotic drugs to try and fix their physical or mental issues. This type of holistic approach also focuses on the spiritual aspect with the alignments of ‘energy’ in the sense of life force. This is something that addicts and alcoholics were most definitely missing. Naturopathy is something that everyone can practice at any time its just a matter of trying to live a more healthy and holistic lifestyle instead of looking to modern medicine to fix all our problems for us.