If you or a loved one is struggling with a drug or alcohol addiction, you’re already aware of how difficult it is to detox and remain sober. Although quitting can be hard, there are several steps you can take to successfully beat an addiction.
First, you’ll need to recognize and acknowledge that you have a problem. Many people who struggle with substance abuse (or their loved ones for that matter) can be in denial about the addiction. In order to get sober, you have to stop letting denial feed your addictions. Second, you’ll need a strong desire to quit. It takes a lot of willpower to overcome addiction. In the beginning, knowing where to begin can be uncertain. Luckily, there are some standard steps to follow that will help you detox and quit drugs or alcohol for good.
How To Get Sober
If you’re wondering how to sober up after finding the motivation to quit, seeking outside help is a great place to begin. A treatment center or detox program provides the support and structure you need to overcome your addiction. If your substance abuse is severe, your recovery plan most likely needs to begin with a medically assisted detox. This will ensure that you’re physically safe while cleaning out your system.
Withdrawal symptoms can be powerful and intense. Having the assistance of a detox nurse can drastically improve this stage. An added advantage of combating your addiction with the aid of medical assistance is that you’ll be forced to stop using all substances during treatment. This is a fast and effective way to stop an addiction. Lastly, medical supervision can be a more effective way of preventing relapses than willpower alone. MD Home Detox offers expert Outpatient Detox at home. This option is more affordable than a residential treatment center. It also has the added benefit of allowing you to sober up in the privacy and comfort of your own home.
Goal setting is another helpful step to take when getting sober. Recovery goals help to maintain motivation, which is an effective way to stay on a path to recovery – and prevent the likelihood of a future relapse. If you are new to the recovery process, setting short-term goals is helpful. It breaks recovery progress into bite-sized pieces, making the problem more approachable.
As you advance in your recovery journey you will gain confidence in your ability to stay sober. At this point, you will be able to set more long-term goals for your recovery plan. Remember, it can take weeks, months, or even years to confidently say you’re sober. So it’s a good idea to begin with baby steps to avoid becoming overwhelmed.
If you are unsure where to begin with the goal-setting process, here are some examples of things to think about:
- Think about the negative emotions you associate with using drugs or alcohol. Come up with healthy, positive alternatives that make you feel good instead.
- If your substance abuse is triggered by underlying emotional issues, such as anger or depression, make it a goal to address those problems.
- Another good short-term goal is learning to manage your negative feelings and emotions by expressing them in positive ways.
As they start to sober up, many people realize the devastating impact their addiction had on loved ones. This includes children, spouses, other family members, and friends. Repairing the damage that addiction caused in these relationships will take time and effort. Another good short-term goal would be reaching out to people who have watched you struggle. Letting them know that you are getting help and that you appreciate their support can go a long way towards healing.
How To Stay Sober
As many recovering addicts will attest, figuring out how to stay sober is a big challenge. One very helpful way to stay sober is finding new hobbies and activities to replace substance abuse. When you abuse drugs and alcohol, you look forward to that feeling of euphoria that substances provided. But what you might not realize is that consuming alcohol also produces cortisol, which is a stress hormone that puts you in a bad mood and makes it harder to sleep. Fortunately, there are some great alternatives to drugs that produce endorphins and boost your mood without also creating stress.
One commonly used activity in an alcohol or drug detox program is exercise. When you engage in regular walking, running, yoga, cycling, or other physical activity that gets your heart pumping, your body naturally releases endorphins. This produces the same feel-good emotions that substances provided, but it’s a much healthier option! The added advantage of exercise is that it makes you look and feel better, which in turn gives you more confidence and reinforces the motivation that you need to conquer your addiction for good. Exercise also naturally leads to healthier living. If you find an activity that you love, such as cycling or tennis, you can also join a local group or club. This is a wonderful way to meet people with similar interests.
Dealing With Cravings for Drugs and Alcohol
Even after detox, and well into recovery, cravings and urges will creep up from time to time. This is especially true during the first several months of starting a recovery program. It’s important to know that cravings will emerge. It’s a natural part of your recovery journey. While you won’t be able to prevent cravings from arising, you can come up with an action plan for what to do when they hit.
Fortunately, there are many possible ways to deal with a craving during drug detox. Any distraction will work, provided it’s a positive one. When a craving arises, one of the simplest ways to distract yourself is by getting out and going for a walk. Taking time to run errands, clean the house, or call a friend to talk are other good outlets.
As you progress in your recovery, remember the words “out of sight, out of mind.” This means being honest with yourself, and with people you know, about your struggles. It also means staying away from temptations. If you know that drugs or alcohol will be offered at a party you’re going to, it’s best to decline the invitation. Similarly, you might want to avoid spending time with friends who still use substances. Participating in AA or a similar recovery program is a great way to learn coping skills and beat an addiction. Don’t hesitate to reach out if you or a loved one needs help!
MD Home Detox Can Help You Sober Up
MD Home Detox provides several services that can help get you sober and keep you sober. In addition to providing private nursing and home detox services, we also offer interventions, family counseling, behavioral health consulting, recovery companions, at home drug testing, and more. Please contact us today to learn more about our services and our experienced staff will point you in the right direction – whether you’re at the beginning of your recovery journey or well into it.