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What Is Stepless SMART Recovery

What is Smart Recovery?

Addiction comes in many forms. Addiction recovery also comes in many forms. Finding the right kind of support and therapy for managing your addiction is the best way to remain successful with your recovery.

When a person enters an addiction recovery center, they face the initial challenges of addiction recovery. Working with a substance abuse counselor, the person in rehab must face their physical addiction to the substance before moving forward with their recovery.

Next, health issues that may be connected to the addiction must be addressed. Many people struggling with addiction often have health issues that have contributed to the addiction or are now a result of that addiction.

The final step in drug rehab is learning how to stay in recovery once you have overcome the addiction. Many substance recovery centers will teach “recovery survival skills” to their patients and help them find group therapy or 12-step programs to support them. Some programs are now incorporating SMART Recovery for addiction into their recovery support.

What Is SMART Recovery?

SMART stands for Smart Management and Recovery Training that is a four-part recovery support program. This program has been very successful for many individuals who are recovering from any addiction. This is not a step program but a recovery program that helps people empower people to stay sober.

The four parts to the SMART Recovery system are:

  • Building and Maintaining Motivation – Through self-reliance, self-motivation, and decision-making skills
  • Coping with Urges – Skill sets that will help anyone in any situation
  • Managing Thoughts, Feelings, and Behaviors
  • Living a Balanced Life – All areas of life, not just addiction

SMART Recovery teaches people how to become empowered through their own thoughts and actions to have control over their lives and choices. The program uses scientific-based tools to help promote self-reliance, self-appreciation, and decision-making skills. As new scientific information emerges, the program may add additional parts to the process if it allows people a better way to stay in control and recovery.

The program focuses on becoming self-aware of their choices and recognizing when a bad choice is being made. It also teaches coping mechanisms for urges and techniques for self-directed change.

SMART Recovery has meetings, mostly virtual, where people can talk and grow their knowledge on how to remain in recovery. Many people are even encouraged to use additional resources like 12-step programs to succeed in their recovery.

The SMART Recovery system addresses each person as an individual and tailors their program to fit those specific needs. SMART Recovery also states that their program evolves as the science around addiction evolves to offer the most advanced treatments and techniques to their members.

The SMART Recovery system has been around for over 25 years, and support groups are available worldwide. The program is gaining momentum because more people have begun to see the very positive effects that the participants experience once they become active in the therapy.

SMART Recovery addresses the person as a whole person that has thoughts, feelings, and decision-making capabilities. It does not just address prior addiction. Most of the skills learned as part of the SMART Recovery process can be applied to everyday situations outside of the realm of addiction.

Support Is Key To Success

Whether you gain support from the SMART Recovery program or use a local group therapy session to help you during recovery, the important part is getting support. One of the leading causes of relapse back into addiction is feeling alone and not having a support system to help you through the rough patches.

And there will be rough patches. Everyone, regardless if they have had addiction in their past, will go through tough times or emotionally straining times. How you manage these events is what counts. With the right support in place, you will get through any tough spot. This applies to everyone, not just those with a previous addiction.

When you enter recovery, it is something that you must address every day for the rest of your life. Of course, with time remaining in recovery becomes a habit, and the urges and temptations significantly decrease. Even then, having techniques that allow you to stay in control of yourself and your urges will help you stay in recovery.            

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Effective Cognitive Behavioral Strategies for Addicts

Effective Cognitive Behavioral Strategies for Addicts

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) was developed as a method to prevent relapse when treating problem drinking, and later it was adapted for cocaine-addicted individuals. Cognitive-behavioral strategies are based on the theory that in the development of maladaptive behavioral patterns like substance abuse, learning processes play a critical role. Individuals in CBT learn to identify and correct problematic behaviors by applying a range of different skills that can be used to stop drug abuse and to address a range of other problems that often co-occur with it.

Behavioral Skills

This is a set of behaviors that an individual uses to get accustomed to and manage problematic drug use. Consistent use of these new behavior skill sets eventually develops into a pattern of maladaptive behavior that is repeated over time expecting to fix a problem that will arise in the future.

The type of behavior displayed is characterized by frequent change, emotional reactivity, and cognitive difficulties. Changes in an individual’s mood, feelings, and perceptions are very visible and usually affect both conscious and subconscious aspects of an individual.

Behavioral skills impaired by drug use

Recognizing this happening is the key to effective CBT treatment. One must learn to manage his or her cognitive rhythms, an increase in changes in mood, physical symptoms including fluctuations of blood pressure and heart rate, and behavioral indicators including anxiety, insomnia, and brainstorming.

Cognitive and behavioral disorders are associated with cocaine use because patients frequently show impaired ability to involve mental strategy, emotional regulation, and insight, which are the caliber of common CBT treatment programs.

Individuals who do not see the importance of the cognitive and behavioral changes associated with cocaine use and recovery concentrate on addiction problems alone, neglecting the role of psychological disorders in cocaine use problems.

Cocaine use creates psychological disorders

All the systems need maintenance and supervision, allowing for the regular evaluation of cognitive and behavioral changes. One must be sensitive to these imbalances and adjust treatment accordingly. Friendship and support is vital when Language team members attempt to help.

Consistent and interpersonal management of cognitive, behavioral, and interpersonal symptoms of addiction as well as other related problems have the potential to determine the effectiveness of CBT treatment.

Impact of CBT Treatment on an Individual

Cognitive-behavioral therapy may offer keen psychological counseling to view the impaired functioning of an individual and to set goals and plans to change behaviors. This counseling may also play a key role in working through emotional reactions and/or cognitive distortions via psychotherapy. Cognitive-behavioral therapy is unlikely to be of benefit to the individual if the individual is not willing to perform the objectives, and be involved in the plan of action.

It has been found that some individuals show marked deficits in cognitive ability and can develop severe deficits in judgment control during the active period of cocaine and even Adderall use, and a persistent lack of it usually develops in a later period of the plan. This judgment system may make it difficult to sustain continued engagement in drug use.

Adderall creates deficits in cognitive ability

Cognitive or memory dysfunction may be a factor of cognitive behavioral therapy as working through any type of cognitive difficulty is difficult. During active phase of the program, participants may encounter difficulty in meeting both psychological and logical expectations. However, it has been found that cognitive-behavioral therapy is futile at the second phase of active stage of detox, so the team must continue to do outpatient maintenance sessions.

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Blogging General Health

LSU Center Select Cannabis Cultivator

 

medical marijuana
Photo courtesy of The Advocate

LSU Plans for Medical Marijuana

Louisiana State University has selected a company that will supply medical cannabis for the Agricultural Center. Medicines from the first crop are expected to be available to patients around mid-2018. GB Sciences, a Las Vegas based company, was selected to be the first producer of high grade cannabis for the state of Louisiana. This is a big deal as there will be only two producers for the state medical marijuana program. Southern University is the only other institute allowed to participate in the program and has yet to select a company that will produce the product. They are expected to make a selection sometime this week.  

Medical Marijuana in Louisiana

Louisiana lawmakers came together in 2015 for the purpose of constructing a framework to dispense cannabis medicines to patients in the state.  Patients suffering from cancers, seizures, epilepsy, and other severe disorders or diseases will soon have access to high-quality cannabis-based medicines with a low risk of addiction.

Types of Legal Marijuana

LSU Medical Marijuana
Photo courtesy of LSU

Policies in the state restrict medical marijuana products to oils, sprays, topical applications, pills, and other forms. Cannabis products which can be smoked are against policy and will not be provided through the state program. In a statement announcing the contract with GB Sciences, LSU agricultural VP Bill Richardson said “It is extremely important that we can provide patients with safe and consistent options to help improve their quality of life.”

Competition For LSU Cannabis Contract is Fierce

CB Medical Inc., another company in competition with GB Sciences for the contract, suggested that the company did not have the financial resources to start up a production facility and uphold fiscal agreements with LSU.

A law firm hired by CB Medical sent a five page letter to the chairman of the LSU Board of Supervisors outlining what they called “red flags” in GB Sciences’ financial documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Dismissing those concerns and expressing high confidence in his company, GB Sciences CEO John Poss is sure the company can keep their end of the deal. A deal that will pay LSU either $3.4M over five years or 10% of gross receipts. GB Sciences has also agreed to contribute towards research with multiple facilities including university medical schools. Although, the production facility will not be on campus nor will any students be involved in the growing process.

Growing Facility Gets Good Grades from LSU

In a recent trip to GB Sciences Las Vegas, Nevada medical marijuana growing facility, LSU Agricultural Center representatives found the location to be a first-class production and research facility. This was in no doubt a large deciding factor in sealing the deal.

The contract between LSU and GB Sciences has everyone excited about research possibilities coming available in the near future. State tax dollars will not be used in the production of medicinal cannabis. This is certainly a big step in helping to remove the stigma around cannabis and providing much needed natural medicines to people suffering in Louisiana.

Opposition

There have been those who oppose the entire idea of legalized marijuana and in Louisiana.  Claiming that Arjuna is an entry-level drug and people that use marijuana are more likely to show signs of a further addition to other drugs such as Adderall.

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Help For Adderall Addiction

snortingdrugswide

Adderall Abuse

Adderall is an addictive prescription medication that has become a highly abused “street drug” in recent years. What used to be referred to as the “Highschool Crystal Meth” has become increasing popular among housewives, CEO’s, and college students.  Adderall works by increasing dopamine levels in the brain. Dopamine, is the brain chemical that makes one “feel good”.  Although dopamine occurs naturally in the brain, Adderall will produce unnaturally high levels of it. This is what causes users to come back for more.

Adderall mimics the stimulant effects similar to cocaine. Those who begin taking Adderall on a regular basis, at unprescribed doses, most often become addicted.  What may begin as a worried parent’s attempt to “help” their child make better grades, or be less active in class, can lead that child down a dangerous road of addiction into their early adult life.

The Real Housewives Of Adderall

Many women claim to be using abusing Adderall as a way to keep up with the many tasks at home, raising children and often holding down a full time job all at the same time.  One of the side effects these housewives found appealing was the weight loss that takes place with regular Adderall use.

Housewives are being arrested daily for illegally buying Adderall on the street, when their children have moved on and the prescription is no longer available.  Women are being admitted to skinnywomanemergency rooms for overdosing on this stimulant at an all time high, and it is especially dangerous when mixed with alcohol and other prescription medications.  Even vitamins and supplements can have adverse effects when taken with Adderall, something that when obtaining the drug illegally is not shared with these women.  The house is clean, the laundry is done and they are maintaining those slender figures, but it comes at a cost, an addiction.

Staying On Top

CEO’s, college students and other adults just trying to “keep up” are also using this highly addictive stimulant to keep their “edge” and their grades competitive.  Imagine, the amount of college age students who are prescribed Adderall and other stimulants can change the way a professor would use a curve in their grading system.  collegkidtakingadderallOverall, students taking stimulants, such as Adderall will have the ability to pull all-nighters to cram for an exam, and remain highly focused when in class, doing research and writing papers.  To stay above the curve in work and school, young adults are abusing this dangerous stimulant at alarming rates.  They take it to come “up”, then have to take something else to “come down”.  This type of self medicating is very dangerous.  Also, the amount of CEO’s and college kids that combine alcohol with the drug Adderall are playing with their lives, just to be the life of the party.

Addiction  Symptoms Of Adderall

When the availability of the drug has dried up, one will begin to experience withdrawal effects as soon as the next day.  They begin to feel foggy headed, or tired.  This is a sign of Adderall withdrawal, and an a sign of addiction.

Most Common Signs Of Adderall Addiction:

  • Taking the drug other than how prescribed
  • Not being able to focus on work and/or school without Adderall
  • Spending money getting the drug
  • Being arrested for illegally obtaining Adderall
  • Unable to feel alert without Adderall
  • Needing larger doses
  • Crushing and snorting Adderall

The symptoms of withdrawal caused by Adderall addiction is hard to manage on your own.  Many users are unable to quit without the help of a rehabilitation center.  Seeking a drug counselor, and getting to a treatment facility as soon as an addiction is discovered will increase the chance of successfully quitting.