I’m overwhelmed by stress and the only way I can relieve it is to medicate it with alcohol or pills. It is interfering with my relationship and job performance. I’m afraid my partner or boss is going to find out. Would therapy really help? June 2017
The Relationship between Addiction and Therapy
Stress is an inevitable yet normal part of life, especially in the fast-paced life surrounding the area of Marin County. In some way or the other, we all experience emotions or situations that triggers stress.
Nowadays, most jobs require employees to assume responsibilities that are difficult to manage. This juggling of varying responsibilities and multitasking to manage the work load; results in stress that is becoming increasingly difficult to handle. Stress can be comparatively mild, such as running late and being stuck in traffic. At other times, it is prolonged and much severe, like being an abused victim of physical, emotional, or sexual abuse.
While we all experience the strain of stress and the toll it can take on your body, we react and tackle it in different ways. Some handle it better than others; they find effective and sometimes, even constructive outlets, while others get overwhelmed and feel defeated. This inability to cope with constant and unrelenting stress, more often than not, leads to addiction of different substances, like alcohol and drugs.
If you feel that your sustained stress patterns will lead to substance abuse or relapse; you can take positive steps to negate this urge. Perhaps the most effective way to manage stress is by making healthy and positive lifestyle changes, and realizing when you might need the help of a mental health professional.
Look after your body
Most people who suffer from constant stress, depression, and other mental illnesses have one thing in common; lack of caring for one’s body. This is perhaps the most overlooked solution that applies to most, if not all cases. Eating a balanced healthy diet provides the necessary nutrients that your body needs to build a strong foundation for optimal emotional and physical well-being as well as strengthening your body’s inherent ability to cope with stressful situations. The same goes for maintaining an exercise routine, as exercising daily raises the level of endorphins in your body that makes you feel better and helps you in maintain and returning to a positive mind set.
Identify your triggers
You can also learn to identify the specific triggers that your stress stems from. There are many types of stress triggers; for some it can be certain types of situations, for others it can even be another person. Triggers vary greatly from person to person and in most cases, are unique to every individual. The trick is to make lifestyle changes that minimize your contact with these triggers. It will help you in significantly reducing the stress as well as anxiety that cause problems and affect other aspects of your life.
However, if you are struggling from stress and suffering from alcohol or drug addiction, it is critical that you find professional help.
Therapy is a necessary aspect of treating addiction, as it is a process of identifying the negative and irrational thought patterns that influence the behavior of a person that made him an addict. Targeting the origin of the problem is the key here.
There are many types of therapies used to treat addicts, like cognitive behavioral therapy, and family counseling to name a few. There are various types of approaches that a mental health professional can take, unique to each patient, to address the underlying issues and resolve them.
Therapy; a Requisite of Addiction Treatment
Addiction is more than the physical dependence on drugs. When the physical dependence on drugs is cured through the detoxing treatment, addicts remain at high risk for relapse. It’s not as much as the physical need, than it is the psychological one. Lifestyle, the pertaining social factors, and the predicament a person is in; are perhaps the most powerful stimuli for drug abuse and/or relapse.
Such factors in most cases are always going to be there in one form or another. The ability to cope with them however, can be improved upon; given a firm foundation, and after developing resilience towards future stressors. Therapies aid addicts so that they don’t think of drugs as a solution anymore, rather, as another problem.
While no method is ideal for everyone, there are methods that fit each addict in the best way. If you are a resident of Marin County and are suffering from the issues discussed above and looking for a way out, contact us, and we will tailor a treatment plan that is best suited to problems you are facing based on your unique needs.