Tips for Staying Sober After Drug Rehab

Drug and alcohol rehabilitation is a challenging process that involves many ups and downs. After you complete your initial stay in a rehab program, the hard work is only beginning. Returning to “normal” life comes with its fair share of struggles, and you'll want to do everything you can to avoid a relapse.

Lifestyle Changes

Life after your formal discharge from drug or alcohol rehab generally involves some long-term lifestyle changes that promote health, wellness and sobriety, while preventing a return to substance abuse. Specific changes can benefit people who have recently completed a treatment program.

Do you want to know how to become fully sober? These lifestyle tips can keep you on track with addiction recovery.

  • Eat a balanced diet: Healthy eating will keep your energy levels up and help you feel your best. Be sure to include lean proteins and lots of fresh fruits and vegetables. The detoxification process can be tough on your body, and addiction often causes malnutrition, so fuel yourself with unprocessed, whole foods to provide all the nutrients you need.
  • Find an exercise program: Exercising is always beneficial for your mental and physical health, keeping your body in shape while you recover. Not only that, but exercise is an excellent stress-relief outlet and can help distract you from cravings and negative thoughts. It also releases endorphins — the feel-good hormones — to help you feel refreshed and energized. Find an enjoyable activity that gets you moving, like walking, biking, swimming, dancing or yoga. That way, you'll want to keep exercising and it won't feel like a chore.
  • Choose social outings carefully: If it is too triggering to be around people you used to drink or use drugs with, you may want to keep your distance for a while. Likewise, you should avoid events and locations where drinking will be a central part of all the activities. You may want to seek new friends and activities that better promote and support your sobriety, especially at first.
  • Do what you love: Sometimes, addiction and any co-occurring mental health issues can cause you to lose sight of responsibilities, hobbies and activities. Now is an excellent time to rediscover the things you once loved doing and spend time exploring new passions. These can keep you happier and help you stay busy to avoid cravings and temptations.

Support Systems

One of the most critical factors in long-term success with sobriety is having a robust support system of people who care about you and understand your goals. Your circle can consist of family members, friends, co-workers and anyone else you regularly interact with. It can even include online connections or fellow support group members who are also in recovery. These are the people who can uplift you when you're struggling and celebrate your milestones and successes with you.

Having a solid support network is crucial for anyone, especially those who are newly out of drug or alcohol rehab. When you have people you know you can count on for help, it can enhance your ability to cope with challenges, relieve stress and boost your mental health. Those with healthy support systems have reduced levels of anxiety and depression, and relapses are less common too. That's why we encourage participation in long-term group therapy and working with a sponsor or mentor. These systems ensure everyone has someone to contact when they need help.

If you want to know how to stay sober after rehab, start by thinking about who is in your support network. Don't be afraid to reach out to loved ones to let them know how to encourage you better. Seek out new friends, in person or online, who share your experiences and interests.

Self-Control and Resilience

If you want to know how to achieve lifelong sobriety, self-control and resilience are critical. Even after detox and rehab, cravings and withdrawal symptoms are typical and may continue for some time. Giving in to your impulse to drink or use drugs doesn't mean you've failed or lack willpower. However, self-control and resilience are skills you can practice, strengthen and improve with time.

One of the best things you can do to help with self-control is remove all temptations. Dispose of any previous substances of use and any items that might be triggers for you. If you live with family or roommates, you can politely ask them not to drink or use around you and keep any alcohol or drugs away from the home. Maintaining healthy habits and having a practical plan for long-term recovery are also crucial for strengthening your self-control over time.

Remember, there is no shame in succumbing to cravings or having a relapse is normal. Strengthening your sense of resilience means picking yourself up and trying again. Don't beat yourself up over a slip-up — know that you are human and can still achieve long-term health and sobriety.

Coping Strategies

Recovery is a long-term process that requires daily work. And while the journey is different for everyone, you'll be more likely to succeed if you have some coping strategies like these in your arsenal.

  • Accept that you may not have full control: It's OK to surrender the idea that you can control everything.
  • Set personal goals: Even small, attainable goals give you something to work toward and celebrate your successes every day.
  • Practice self-care: Prioritize doing what you need to recharge and protect yourself.
  • Embrace spirituality: Whether this includes following a specific religious tradition, meditating or even yoga, these practices help give you hope and deal with your negative thoughts and emotions.
  • Develop connections: Make new sober friends and attend meetings and events where you can connect with people who have similar experiences and will support you.
  • Believe in yourself: Though overcoming addiction is challenging, nurture the idea that you can achieve sobriety. Trust yourself and have confidence.

Get Help From Transformations By The Gulf

If you or a loved one are struggling with alcohol or drug addiction, the professionals at Transformations By The Gulf are here to help. Our unique treatment centers can give you the coping strategies you need to achieve long-term sobriety. If you want to know how to stay sober, our holistic therapies provide everything you need. Contact us today to get started on the path to recovery.

 


Signs You Need Addiction Treatment and Rehab

Addiction affects millions of Americans, but only a tiny fraction ever
seek treatment. They may not realize they have a problem or don’t believe their substance use adversely affects their
lives.

If you routinely drink or use drugs to excess, you may be wondering, “Do I need rehab?” Consider the signs below to
figure out how to know if you need rehab.

You’re Dependent on the Substance

You can become physically and psychologically dependent on any mind-altering substance. That's because alcohol and
drugs change your brain's reward pathways until you feel you need them to be happy. However, alcohol and drug
addiction drastically affect your physical and mental health, including side effects such as:

  • A weakened immune system
  • Organ damage
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Mood changes
  • Weight loss or gain
  • Irritability or aggression
  • Poor cognitive functioning
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Potential coma or overdose

Some people also start using substances to cope with uncomfortable feelings or symptoms from various mental health
conditions, such as stress, depression, anxiety or loneliness. You might rely on substance use to manage stress
instead of dealing with your problems head-on.

Maybe you depend on drugs or alcohol to have fun, especially if you start drinking or using in social situations.
Eventually, you may think these substances are the only way to relax and have a good time if you don't have any
healthy outlets.

Are you wondering how to tell if you need rehab? A worsening substance dependency is one of the most severe signs you
need alcohol rehab from a qualified inpatient or outpatient facility. Addiction specialists can help you safely detox
from harmful substances and equip you with the tools to cope with stressful situations. Your physical and mental
health will also improve throughout your recovery journey.

Your Abuse Is Affecting Your Personal Life

As an addiction takes over, you will eventually lose sight of your other priorities, including the people you care
about most. One of the primary problems with substance abuse is lowered inhibitions, putting you at risk for severe
injury from falls or accidents. You might also engage in risky behaviors, such as driving under the influence, having
unsafe sex or sharing needles. Some substances can also cause blackouts, leading to irresponsible activities during
periods of memory loss.

Drinking or using drugs can also affect your personal life in various ways. People addicted to substances may
experience:

  • Strained relationships
  • Social isolation from loved ones and the community
  • Irritation and anger causing you to say or do things you don’t mean or that are out of character
  • Lack of interest in social outings or activities
  • Reduced productivity at work
  • Inability to keep up with responsibilities, such as child care or professional tasks
  • Failure to take care of yourself or your home

If you notice your life has become adversely affected by substance use, it’s time to seek professional help. Addiction
specialists can help you repair your relationships and life through treatment, allowing you to enjoy sober living.

Your Loved Ones Have Tried to Get You to Go

Your loved ones have your best interests at heart and only want you to be healthy and happy. If they’ve noticed your
substance use and its effect on your life, they have likely tried to convince you to seek treatment to improve your
well-being and get you back on track toward sobriety. They may have staged an intervention or talked with you one-on-one in hopes of persuading you to enroll in a rehabilitation facility. Sadly, since denial,
anger and irritability are hallmarks of active addiction, you may have responded to these attempts with
hostility.

You might believe you are doing a good job hiding your illness, but your loved ones know you best. If people close to
your heart have pleaded with you to seek help, your substance use is likely taking a more significant toll on your
life than you realize.

You Need to Take Excessive Amounts of the Substance to Feel Any Effects

People seek different substances for various reasons, including:

  • Self-medicating for physical and mental health conditions
  • Reducing stress from work, relationship problems and family conflict
  • Dealing with traumatic experiences
  • Alleviating uncomfortable feelings, such as boredom or loneliness

The first few times you drink or use drugs, you won’t need much to feel the effects. While alcohol and drugs can
provide short-term relief, your body will start to build a tolerance over time, so you'll need more and more to
experience the desired effect. Increasing your dose and frequency of use puts you at risk for coma, overdose and
death.

If you’ve noticed you're drinking and using excessive amounts, it’s an obvious indication that you’ve built a
tolerance and should seek professional help to break free from your addiction, improve your health and prevent a
potentially fatal overdose.

You’ve Unsuccessfully Tried to Quit

Addiction is a lifelong condition, and it has a
similar relapse rate as other chronic conditions such as high blood pressure and asthma. A return to substance use isn't a failure, but it
means you haven’t learned appropriate coping mechanisms to deal with stressful situations or addressed the root cause
of your addiction.

If you’ve tried to quit independently without professional help, it may indicate that intervention is necessary to
help you get your life back on track.

An accredited treatment facility can help you understand your disease and why you may rely on drugs or alcohol. The
professional staff will also equip you with the tools to successfully prevent relapse in triggering situations where
you may feel cravings to start using substances again, sustaining your recovery and improving your quality of life.

These treatment facilities offer multiple levels of care to address the unique nature of your addiction. Additionally,
if you’ve tried professional treatment before but have still found it challenging to quit drinking or using, that
could be a sign that you need a higher level of care, such as residential inpatient rehabilitation or frequent attendance in an
intensive outpatient program.

How to Know When You Need Rehab – Take Our Quiz!

The first step in the recovery process is realizing you have a disease that's harming every aspect of your life. Using
the signs above, you can determine whether you need professional addiction treatment to help you get back on track.
Can you just walk into rehab? At Transformations By The Gulf, our experienced providers can assess your condition and
create a treatment plan for you as soon as possible.

If you’re struggling with a substance use disorder, you’re not alone. Transformations By The Gulf offers holistic
addiction treatment programs with a personalized approach to help you achieve sobriety and improve your quality of
life. Our dedicated staff will start you on your recovery journey and provide you with the tools you need to succeed
after treatment. If you’re not sure you need help, you can
take our “Do I Need Rehab” quiz or contact us to learn more about our programs.


Can a Rehab Center Report My Addiction as a Crime?

In short, a rehab center can't report your substance use to the police in most cases. Simply admitting to drug use isn't enough for the rehab to call the police, even if you have an existing criminal record. Whether your substance use disorder is current or in the past, a drug treatment center can't call the police if you're simply seeking drug abuse treatment.

Ultimately, jail shouldn't be a concern if you're seeking treatment for a substance use disorder. Rehabilitation facilities are focused on helping you recover from your substance use and taking you through the drug rehabilitation process — they aren't going to call the police to send you to jail for illicit substance use. Their goal is to help you recover and provide you with healthy coping skills to live an enriching, sober life.

While most cases can't be reported to law enforcement, there are a few instances where a rehab center can call the police. Continue reading to learn more about your rights as a patient, why a rehabilitation center might contact law enforcement and more.

 

Patient Confidentiality: Knowing Your Rights

As a patient at a rehab center, you have rights that protect your private information. You should familiarize yourself with the laws that protect your medical information to ensure you know what's being done with it. When you start treatment, a rehab center employee will give you the center's privacy and confidentiality guidelines to sign. This paperwork outlines your rights as a patient. The staff at the rehab facility must also sign these documents.

Most of the information and protections in these guidelines come from laws established to give patients more rights than they once had. The following are a few of the laws that health care providers must follow.

The Health Insurance and Portability and Accountability Act of 1996

The Health Insurance and Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPPA) was first introduced in 1996 to prevent health care providers from sharing patient information without explicit consent from the patient. The information you share with your physician or any other health care provider must remain private, which is known as doctor-patient confidentiality.

Drug treatment centers fall under "covered entities," which means they're subject to the HIPPA Privacy Rule. Medical staff at the rehab facility can't divulge your medical information to anyone, including law enforcement. The Privacy Rule also allows patients to control how their medical information is used.

Your medical information can only be shared without your consent in specific instances, including:

  • Medical emergencies
  • Suspicion of neglect or abuse
  • Legal warrants or subpoenas
  • Specific research situations

If a medical facility has to disclose your information for any reason, it can only be enough to fulfill the needs of the situation, such as disclosing medications you're taking in the event of a medical emergency. Breaking HIPPA guidelines can result in considerable legal repercussions for the treatment center. If someone in the facility divulges your information with malicious intent, they can face up to 10 years in prison.

 

The Confidentiality of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Patient Records

This regulation was initially instated in 1975 and revised in 1987. It states that rehab facilities can't directly or indirectly divulge information that would identify you as a current or past patient at said facility. If the facility has your explicit written consent, they would be able to share your information with certain parties — but otherwise, they must keep your information private.

If a police officer enters the facility trying to seek information about your substance use and they don't have a warrant or a subpoena, the rehab facility is not allowed to give them your information. Like HIPPA laws, if a staff member shares your medical information with your consent, the facility will face legal repercussions.

There are a few exceptions to this regulation. If there are court-ordered criminal investigations, warrants or subpoenas, your information can be shared with law enforcement. Your information can also be shared if there is suspected child abuse or neglect, a medical emergency or a program evaluation.

However, in most cases, a rehab facility can't share your information since it's legally part of their job to protect your medical records.

 

Can I Be Charged in Rehab?

Upon admittance to a drug treatment center for substance use disorder, you won't be charged for using drugs, whether you're seeking treatment for a past or current substance use. However, there are some reasons that a rehab facility might call the police.

If you were arrested in the past for a nonviolent drug offense, you might be able to go to drug court rather than jail. Drug court specifically handles drug cases for adults and juveniles. A drug court can sentence you to court-ordered rehab to reduce relapse and the chances of you committing another crime.

If you fail to show up to court-ordered rehab, the facility can call the police, and it'll be seen as a violation of your sentencing, resulting in harsher punishments.

A rehab facility can also contact law enforcement, or law enforcement can get involved, if:

  • You exhibit destructive or violent behavior.
  • You admit yourself into rehab to avoid an arrest for a criminal act.
  • You have a warrant out for your arrest.

You can also be arrested in rehab if a staff member catches you using or possessing drugs within the facility. The facility staff keeps a careful eye out for substance use. If you're caught with drugs, you can be charged with drug possession. If you're caught with a significant amount of illicit or prescription drugs, you can be charged with possession with intent to sell, which comes with more severe legal repercussions.

If you committed a minor crime before admitting yourself into a treatment facility, law enforcement may wait until you've completed treatment to make an arrest.

If you're looking into treatment for substance use, you can rest assured that you won't be arrested in rehab simply for having a substance use disorder. The priority of treatment facilities is to treat your substance use disorder and any underlying conditions contributing to it, not to have you arrested for illicit drug use.

 


Transformations By The Gulf Response to the Coronavirus

A Message to Our Customers on Coronavirus

At Transformations by the Gulf, we remain committed to our community throughout the COVID-10 outbreak. Keeping you informed with available news and information about the coronavirus (COVID-19) is a top priority.

PREVENTATIVE PRE-CAUTIONS WE ARE TAKING

  • Daily sanitization of all hard surfaces
  • Admissions department screening potential clients prior to entering facility
  • Proper gloves and masks are worn in the facility
  • Increased sanitization throughout common areas

The safety and health of our patients, staff, and community are of the utmost importance.


depression and substance abuse

Suicide, Depression and Substance Abuse: How to Get Help

Do you know that there is a close association between mental illness and substance abuse? In the short run, drugs affect our moods and may cause anxiety due to hallucinations. Long term effects include depression due to the depletion of serotonin hormone and in severe cases, schizophrenia.

Depression caused by rampant drug use may lead to suicide since the individual does not find the motive to live. If you are in such a place, read the article below to understand how you can seek help for depression and substance abuse.

Be Ready For Change

The first step to seeking help for your drug abuse problem is self-acceptance. You must admit to yourself that you have a problem and that you need your life to get back on track.

Be prepared for the new changes. For example, you may need to cut off friends that encourage you to use drugs. You may also have to avoid places such as bars that trigger you to use drugs.

Seek the Support of Close Friends and Family

Your close friends and family comprise a strong support network that will help you overcome depression and substance abuse. Besides, they will motivate you to abide by the new lifestyle changes.

Friends and family will ensure that you attend rehabilitation classes and doctor’s appointments. Being around caring people can reduce the impacts of depression as you no longer feel alone.

Join Support Groups

Support groups comprising former drug addicts can help you overcome your drug addiction and manage your depression. In the support group, you engage with people who have had similar life experiences.

At first, you may be afraid to tell your story to strangers. However, you realize that telling the story is part of the healing process. During support group sessions, you will learn how to lead a drug-free lifestyle.

Attending support group sessions may prompt you to help people in similar situations. They may be members of the support group or former friends who would like to change their lifestyle. As you help someone out, you realize that you must do better for that person to look up to you.

Seek Medical Help for Depression and Drug Abuse

Seek medical attention if you think that your addiction is not manageable. For severe addiction, the best option would be admitted into an inpatient program where you will be under 24-hour medical supervision. You may also opt for an out-patient program where you do not have to spend time at the facility.

Your doctors will have to establish if your mental illness and substance addiction are separate problems. For instance, some people abuse drugs to cope with trauma due to sexual abuse or loss of a close family member.

You will receive medical treatment to prevent relapse and manage your depression. Further, you will receive counseling to help you come to terms with your reality.

Need Help? Do it Today!

We procrastinate because we think our futures are assured. However, with depression and substance abuse, you need to take action immediately. Confide in close friends and family, join a support group or seek medical treatment for your condition.

Visit us today for high-quality drug rehabilitation services.