Sobriety Pays Off During A Coronavirus Outbreak

The world had to go to a standstill when the number of positive COVID-19 cases soared faster than anyone ever imagined. Almost every country in the East and West ordered a nationwide lockdown and allowed no one to go in and out of the borders. Cities or states were under quarantine, and the local authorities mandated the inhabitants to avoid going out for non-essential reasons.

As expected, many people did not like the new situation that we all found ourselves in. Some were blatant enough to put quarantine in comparison with a house arrest. However, they could not see how fortunate they were to be away from places that might have the coronavirus. While dining in, working, or gambling was prohibited, you could still order takeouts and smoke to your heart’s content.

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I said the latter in a matter-of-factly manner, yes, but it was not a nod towards smoking every day. You should not be emptying a pack of Marlboro or Newport—or both—as if you could only get through the quarantine by doing that. In truth, if you could lay off this habit completely, that would raise your chances to dodge or fight coronavirus.

Why Does Sobriety Pay Off During A Virus Outbreak?

My aunt contracted the coronavirus two weeks ago. It started with flu-like symptoms such as coughing, fever, and body pains. After a couple of days, she got tested along with her husband, who also tested positive. 

The thing is, both patients got similar symptoms around the same time. But my aunt’s husband had it a little worse because he experienced dizzying spells and loss of taste. 

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They blamed it on the fact that he was a smoker, whereas my aunt had never puffed a cigarette in her life. Though he had gone from two packs to less than a pack a day, it still caused enough damage on his body, especially his lungs, to be unable to beat the coronavirus quickly. If my aunt’s husband already stopped smoking years ago, he might not be having this problem now.

What Does A Cigarette Do To Your Body?

It Activates Your Immune System At Odd Times

I read a recent study about a group of non-smokers who were told to use e-cigarettes for the first time to see how the smoke would affect their bodies. As it turned out, it only took 20 puffs before the chemicals forced neutrophils to release DNAs that could form a trap for bacteria. It might sound helpful now, but if it would happen a lot, your immune system might malfunction and work against healthy cells. Once a real threat like a coronavirus comes, therefore, your immunity might be a curse to you.

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It Keeps You Prone To Infections

Many smokers claim that they cannot stop puffing because it makes them forget their worries momentarily. They no longer mind if it alters their odor and causes constant coughing and other health problems as long as they can smoke. 

This effect is bothersome as these people become too ‘high’ to realize what is happening around them. Worse, their cells may be in chaos often, so their body cannot detect or prevent infections. That’s the reason why it is challenging for smokers to win against COVID-19.

Final Thoughts

To end this article on a positive note, allow me to announce that my aunt and her husband are already on the mend. They were in a scary phase in the last 14 days, but both eventually survived the worst symptoms of the coronavirus disease. 

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If you do not want to end up in the same situation as my loved ones, you can do two things:

    • Stay at home
    • Stop smoking

Good luck!

The Benefits Of Reading With Your Kids

The future of international education was the topic of discussion in the 2019 Education Conference. Opening boundaries has made it possible for students worldwide to study anywhere they want to, giving them opportunities to explore the globe.

You and your child can also reach these places without leaving your home – by reading books. So, bring that opportunity to your children and reap these benefits.

Reading

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The first benefit of reading with your children is the development of their reading skills. At the start, they will only mimic what you say. But as you continuously engage them with these books, they will eventually start to recognize the words and learn how to read them on their own.

Vocabulary And Comprehension

When you read with your children, even to your babies, you help them develop their vocabulary and comprehension skills. Eventually, as you expose them to more complex stories, they also improve their grammar and spelling abilities.

Writing Skills

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By reading to your child, you open them to a world of vocabulary. Books introduce new words to them, which they adapt to in writing. They also learn proper grammar and punctuation in the stories that they read with you.

Academic Success

Studies show that there is a correlation between reading and success in school. Reading with your children builds their reading, comprehension, and writing skills. These skills are some of the core competencies needed to perform well academically.

Empathy

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Books expose your young to the lives of a variety of characters, teaching them empathy and sympathy towards those them. Furthermore, it broadens their mind, helping them make a better sense of the world around them.

Imagination

Books are like portals to different worlds – both real and imaginary. So, when you expose your kids to reading, you help them develop their creativity and imagination. These skills help your children be better problem solvers and molds them into more adaptable individuals.

Reading books with your children takes so little of your time but gives you lots of benefits. So, why not start reading to your kids today?

Four Lifestyle Changes You Can Do To Prevent A Relapse

The 2019 Lifestyle Conference emphasized how food can affect not only our physical strength but also our mental health. And it is indeed true that a healthy diet can positively affect even our mood. So, when you are recovering from an addiction, changing your diet can have sound effects on you.

To further help you prevent a relapse, here are four lifestyle changes to adapt on your road to recovery.

Eat Healthily

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Like what I mentioned above, the first change that you must do for yourself is to improve your diet. Eating a nutritious meal three times a day can significantly help you in your recovery.

Learn how to plan your food so you would not encounter the temptation to buy take out fast food. If you need help, seek assistance from a nutritionist or a dietician to know which foods your body needs.

Schedule A Sleep Routine

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Lack of sleep may result in depression and a lack of self-control. So, having enough hours of snoozes can help you a lot on your road to recovery.

Health experts suggest that having at least seven hours of sleep is right for you. It does not only energize you, but it also makes you have a more positive mindset for the rest of your day. Find a sleep routine that you can stick through and follow it strictly every day.

Exercise Regularly

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Exercising has excellent benefits for your physical health. Likewise, it makes your mind and emotions okay too. This phenomenon happens because endorphins, the happy hormones, are released when you break a sweat. Add physical activity to your weekly routine and find happiness in your daily life.

Know Yourself

Lastly, the best lifestyle change is knowing yourself. Know what triggers your addiction. And the best way to avoid relapse is to understand what these are and how to manage them.

Seek professional help to assist you in identifying them and for coping methods that you can practice. And when you already feel the urge, don’t be afraid to seek help from a close friend or a counselor to help you get through it.

The road towards recovery may be rocky, but it is not impossible. These lifestyle changes can help you improve yourself and give you a better chance of recovering from your addiction.

Non-Alcoholic Pastimes While Under Quarantine

I can feel how much newly sober individuals may be struggling to stay away from alcoholic beverages during the quarantine. Your daily schedule is not jam-packed, but you can’t use your free time to go out. You can work from home, but it somehow takes a shorter period to finish than usual. Thus, you may always get tempted to drink your favorite alcohol to pass the time.

In reality, however, you can protect your sobriety by trying other time-consuming yet worthwhile activities.

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Reading

One of the most carefree pastimes to consider is reading. You can do it as soon as you open your eyes, after lunch, before bedtime, and even while taking a dump. It is not restricted to paperbacks or hardbound copies, either. After all, Amazon Kindle, Kobo, and other online stores have a lot of titles in eBook format.

Have you found reading boring in the past? Well, it might be because you are trying to read an uninteresting book. Once you get ahold of a book that’s right up to your alley, you may not be able to step away from it.

Sewing

People have never realized how significant clothing stores are until they have closed to prevent the coronavirus from spreading. The current situation is specifically troublesome for those who love wearing new clothes.

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Well, a quick fix for this problem is learning how to sew. You can order a small sewing machine and some fabrics and watch tutorials online. Start with no-frills clothes like a sundress or tank top. When you get used to it, you may produce a full outfit, complete with a matching face mask.

Baking

Do you love pastries and desserts? Bakeshops can open during a quarantine since they provide food products, so you can go there anytime. However, in case you want to avoid human interaction as much as possible, you can bake your favorite goodies.

Baking should not be too difficult, especially if you already have an oven at home. Considering you have an oven toaster or microwave, that also works. Your creations don’t need to be bakeshop-material—they merely have to quench your cravings while passing the time.

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Gardening

Because of the quarantine, most people cannot go to parks and become one with the soil, grass, trees, and flowering plants. If you miss that, you may try gardening.

It should be easy to buy packets of seeds in the supermarket. You may plant them anywhere in the garden and tend to them every day. This process can take up your entire morning, so you won’t feel like pouring yourself a glass of wine in the middle of the day.

Napping

Napping is a pastime that you should never take for granted. Some think that it is only suitable for babies, but even adults can benefit from it. You can nap anytime during the day from five to 30 minutes to recharge your mind and body.

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A little word of advice: schedule your nap several hours before bedtime. Putting a couple of hours between the two can make it challenging for you to sleep at night.

Final Thoughts

Your quarantine days can be similar to a box of chocolates. Say, you can look for a dessert recipe and recreate it today. Tomorrow, you may work on your garden from sunrise until the afternoon. The day after that, you can sew a new dress or pick an inspiring book. Of course, you should try to nap every day to feel more relaxed than ever.

You should be able to do all these pastimes while the community is still under quarantine. This way, you will be full of energy and extremely pumped to prove your skills when you return to work.

Why Sobriety Matters During A Pandemic

It has been almost a month since the last time that the sunlight has touched my skin. When Governor Newsom announced the stay-at-home policy in California, my family took it very seriously. Only one person can go out, and that happens to be my husband. Even so, he has only left the house twice to pick up the groceries that I have ordered online. We also have a covered garage, so I need not go outside to collect them from the back of the car.

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Interestingly enough, it has also been almost a month since the last time that my husband and I have shared a drink. Before the COVID-19 outbreak, we used to pour a glass of wine (or three) for each other practically every night. We did not have an alcohol addiction; we merely liked drinking while talking about how our day went. It has always been a part of our bonding experience as a couple.

Since our family has been quarantined, our stress level is not high anymore, and we do not feel the need to drink at all. I believe this newfound sobriety of ours matters because of the following reasons:

Your Immunity Will Not Suffer

A lot of people drink in hopes of forgetting their worries or calming their nerves, especially when they feel uncertain about the future. Getting hungover does not feel great in whatever circumstance, but it makes folks feel a sense of normalcy. It’s as if they are saying, “A headache is too small of a price to pay for dealing with our situation.”

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The problem with drinking during a pandemic, though, is that it does not help your immune system at all. The more alcohol there is in your body, the more your immunity will suffer. As you turn into an immuno-suppressed individual due to your drinking habits, you become prone to acquiring the coronavirus.

It Lets You Continue Doing Your Job Wonderfully

Many businesses have been forced to allow their employees to work from home during the quarantine. While some people use this opportunity to spend time with family, others assume that it is a fantastic excuse to drink day and night. After all, the manager won’t be there to reprimand them, and they don’t need to wake up for work in the morning.

Although there may not be too much to do right now, switching into chill mode entirely cannot be ideal. Your boss may still expect you to send a high-quality output at the end of your shift, you see. That cannot happen if you’re always nursing a hangover. If you don’t stay sober now, the alcohol may cost you your job.

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Incredible Circumstances Won’t Pass You By

Imagine yourself opening packs of beer or a bottle of liquor and thinking, “I can finish this beverage in one sitting.” You do empty the bottle(s), pass out, wake up with a hangover, and then drink again. You stick to this routine because you believe that the quarantine will become more tolerable when you need not go through it sober.

The upside of not drinking while quarantined is that there is room for your loved ones in your schedule. They can talk to you coherently; you can bond with them in person or via FaceTime. Your relationships at this point might be better than ever, given that you don’t focus on wasting away during your free time.

Final Thoughts

I get it if you feel too afraid to handle the coronavirus news updates without an ounce of alcohol in your system. It seems challenging to receive positive information these days; the patient and death counts are both rising. Despite that, how can you avoid being part of these statistics if you don’t embrace sobriety now?

Top Student Coping Strategies From Academic Stress

The 2019 Academic Bee recognized not only the top spelling bee students in the country but also tackled the importance of coping from academic stress. If you worry too much about mastering your lessons or you’re too overwhelmed because of your upcoming stress, then it’s probably time to let go of all the stress. Listed below are the top student coping strategies from academic stress. 

Keep On Practicing

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Admit it or not, students tend to put too much pressure on themselves whenever they commit mistakes. Keep in mind, however, that every failure is an opportunity to improve and learn more. What you should do is to treat your mistakes as an inspiration to be better. You can do this by practicing continuously and learning from it. 

Consistent practicing will not only enhance your knowledge but will also improve your time management skills. 

Create A Rewards System

Students tend to get bored and procrastinate whenever they have assignments and deadlines. Therefore, the best way to go about this is to create a rewards system. This strategy will inspire you to finish your tasks as soon as possible. 

For instance, you may give yourself sweets for every 15 pages of reading the textbook. Scientifically speaking, the excitement you feel from this will provide you with a little boost of endorphins, making you more encouraged to accomplish your task. 

Undergo Positive Self-talk

How you talk and treat yourself dramatically contributes to how you see and feel about yourself. If you belittle yourself, then there’s a significant possibility that you will start believing that internal critic. However, if you become your cheerleader and support yourself, then you will have more drive to achieve your goals. 

So, how does positive self-talk work? First, you state the things that you are thankful for upon waking up. Then, throughout the day, talk to yourself about what makes you an excellent person. It can be as simple as giving food to a homeless child or as big as helping a colleague with work. Do these exercises as well whenever negative thoughts enter your brain. 

Take Constant Breaks

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Several students tend to study for consecutive hours on the objective of finishing early. However, studies show that this practice will only hamper your studying. The longer you take in a lot of information, the fewer details your brain can retain because of exhaustion. Therefore, constant breaks are vital. 

What do we mean by constant breaks? If you are doing your homework or studying for a test, make sure that you stop for 10 minutes for every hour that you are working. You can do whatever you like in this short time. You may opt to listen to music, nap for a while, or conduct breathing exercises. 

Always Have A Good Night’s Sleep

You won’t be able to concentrate if you weren’t able to have a good night’s sleep. It might be a little challenging to achieve this, especially if you are catching up with school work, but there are some strategies on how you can. 

One of which is to deny yourself from using any technological device before sleeping. Make sure that the last homework you’ll do is the one that does not require screen time. This way, you’ll be able to relax your brain quickly. 

If you are getting stressed with your endless academic papers and exams, make sure to follow the coping strategies above. Refresh your mind, and you’ll reach your educational goals in no time!

The Benefits Of Cooking Your Meal

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The 2018 Lifestyle Workshop features quick and easy healthy food demonstrations and encourages you to create DIY real food. Even in your busy schedule, your health must be your top priority. Eating a healthy diet reduces your risk of illness, improves your memory and mood for the day. 

These days, most people often let the microwave do their cooking because they think the time spent in chopping ingredients is not worth it. However, cooking your meals is easy, cheaper, and can provide you with skills you will not get by depending on quick eating trends. Here are the following benefits of cooking in your life:

  • Cooking Your Meal Makes You Healthier

People who frequently do their cooking consume fewer calories than those who don’t. When you cook, you get to see the ingredients you’re using, making you more aware of the nutrients your body will receive. People who are less likely to cook their food often eat meals that lack proper nutrition. They often would get their food from fast-food restaurants, deliveries, or buy frozen food. Due to the less diversity found in their diet, they are more prone to weight gain, illnesses, and mood disturbance.

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  • Cooking Saves Money

You’ll be surprised at how much you spend daily eating outside or waiting for deliveries to knock on your door. When you cook your meal, you buy your ingredients in the local market, giving you information on how much you are spending. You can save money by becoming more aware of the things you’re buying.

  • You’ll Learn New Skills And Enhance Your Creativity

You can expand your skills in the kitchen. You can learn essential recipes such as making simple soups, salad, or whole-grain dishes and learn techniques as well, such as cutting veggies, salad dressing, and also master the skill of gathering and preparing healthiest protein alternatives. Through cooking, you might find a hidden culinary interest within you, experiment as you try new ideas, and express yourself through the art of food preparation. 

  • It Can Improve Your Social Skills

Cooking with the people closest to you can improve your relationship as you all get involved in preparing your meal. You can create meaningful conversations and catch-up with your life stories. It can also motivate you to invite other people to cook or share a meal with you. You can find cooking as a liberating and enjoyable experience.       

       

Therapist’s: How To Take Care of Your Body

“As adults, we deny the truth when it might mean we’d have to take action we don’t want to.” Darlene Lancer, JD, MFT

Taking good care of your body must become your top priority. Take note that there are tons of things to take into consideration if you want to live a happy life, one of which is to know what your body needs and respond to it. Whether you like it or not, your physical health can affect a lot of aspects of your life. If you are fit and healthy, then there is a good chance that you can also achieve mental wellness. In this article, we are going to discuss the different ways of how you make this happen. Most of the tips mentioned below came from a therapist who has several years of experience in the study of human behavior. Make sure to remember these:

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Eat A Balanced Diet

 

For sure, this is not the first time that you have heard of this. Many authors and researchers have repeated the significance of eating right over and over again. If you want to be healthy, there is no need to skip meals to accomplish your target weight. The right thing to do is to eat on time and change your daily diet. As much as possible, take away foods that are high in fats and calories in your diet. Instead, focus on having vegetables and fruits in your table. Once you are able to do this, everything will become a lot easier on your part.

 

Be Physically Active

 

Another vital thing that you must never forget is to be active in keeping yourself fit through exercise. You must never have an excuse for not being physically active. Otherwise, you are only exposing yourself to several health risks. As much as possible, take some time off to enjoy running in the park, going to the gym, or performing yoga exercise at home. Take note that you have several choices when it comes to this matter. What is essential is that you can sweat out all the stress and anxiety, regardless of how busy you are.

“The voice process exists along a continuum of intensity, ranging from mild self-criticism to extremely angry, self-abusive thoughts.” — Robert Firestone, Ph.D

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Check Your Skin Products

 

When it comes to valuing or taking good care of yourself, skin must also be one of your considerations. Make sure that you are greatly careful with the products that you are using in your skincare routine. Check the labels or prints of each item that you use to see if there are some harmful ingredients included. If possible, go for anything organic or natural so that you can get a guarantee that it will not do you any harm. At this point, it is also crucial to emphasize that just because one product works for one person does not mean that it will also work for you. Otherwise, you may end up purchasing the wrong item for you. If you are not sure with the products to purchase, it is ideal if you will ask the experts about it before you will buy it. Also, it is essential that you do not go for any counterfeit item for any reason at all.

 

Avoid Sun Exposure

 

Did you know that the sunrays are extremely harmful to your skin? These ultra-violate rays can be dangerous for your body. The more exposed you are under the scorching heat of the sun, the more dangerous it is for your body. As much as possible, be careful with your sun exposure. Make sure to use sun block materials at all times. It is also ideal for bringing an umbrella or hat wherever you go so that you can keep yourself protected from the sun. If you want this to work, you have to exert efforts in making it happen.

 

Get Enough Sleep

 

You must also never forget the significance of getting the right amount of sleep every single night. Always remember that you are not invincible, which means that you will get tired at some point. No matter how energetic you are, you will always look for a way to rest. As such, it is essential for you to sleep early so that you can already recharge for the new days. Aside from this, you must also keep yourself away from anything that can disrupt your sleep. For example, set your phone to night mode wherein you will automatically not receive any calls while you are already sleeping.

 

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“Some people grow up with the idea that self-care is selfish. But taking care of yourself first is important, especially if you are dedicated to taking care of others.” — Robyn E. Brickel, M.A., LMFT

Remind yourself that failure to take good care of your body will not only cause some adverse effects to your physical health. At the same time, it can also have an effect your mental health.

 

Psychologists Warn Us Of The Threats of Substance Abuse

“We are constantly giving out signals that other people can pick up. Your family can usually tell when you are stressed out, relaxed, happy, or sad.” — Erika Krull, MSEd, LMHP

People often look for an outlet to relieve themselves from their worries or stress. It may be some hobby or spending time with some friends. Unfortunately for others, this outlet refers to alcohol, drugs, tobacco, and other harmful substances. Those who claim that they have no friends nor hobbies often look to depend on psychoactive substances. For psychologists, this is a severe case that may lead to a dependence disorder.

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Substance abuse is different from addiction since many people with substance problems can quit. They still have the power to change their unhealthy behavior, yet this can even develop into a habit. Addictions are considered diseases that cause you more harm as you continue to use such substances.

Commonly Abused Substances

There are certain types of substances that an individual can abuse. These substances range from those usually found to relieve stress to those not accessible to the public.

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  • Alcohol

Alcohol is available as long as you are of legal age. This substance has a different effect on each person. Also, we all have different tolerance levels. However, if you drink too much, you become more prone to accidents.

  • Cigarettes And Other Tobacco Products

Tobacco is not considered to be a drug but instead a chemical that gives you a rush of pleasure and energy. Nicotine causes the rush you feel. Having too much of this substance can cause addiction.

  • Cocaine

Cocaine is a powerfully, addictive stimulant. This drug speeds up your whole body. You also feel happy and gain a boost in energy. However, it is likely to have your mood suddenly shift into anger and may bring hallucinations.

  • Marijuana (Cannabis)

Marijuana is a drug made from the hemp plant Cannabis sativa. Some states legalized the medical use of marijuana. However, it remains illegal in other countries. Marijuana causes you to feel silly and to laugh for no reason. Heavy users of marijuana are often left “burned out” without a care about anything else anymore.

  • Prescription And Over-The-Counter (OTC) Medicine

The most common OTC drugs abused include opioid pain relievers and anxiety medicine. These drugs can be just as dangerous as illegal drugs. In determining whether you are abusing this drug or not, you need to consider if you are taking the medication for a non-medical reason. Also, taking more than what your prescription orders is another sign of abuse.

  • Heroin

Heroin, an illegal drug made from morphine, gives you a rush of good feelings. Once the drug wears off, everything becomes slow. This drug causes you to move and think slowly, giving you nausea, nervousness, and chills.

“Addiction manifests in a variety of ways, from the most severe heroin junkie to the compulsive spender. It can include drug or alcohol dependence, compulsive pornography use, gambling, obsessive eating, lying, toxic relationships, or even Netflix.” — Jason Whiting Ph.D.

Psychologist’s Warning

Substance abuse is an alarming case that is affecting both teenagers and adults. Once an individual becomes substance-dependent, they become incapable of control and unable to stop from continued use. Several psychologists warn us of its dangers. These include the following:

  • You develop a weak immune system, causing you to become more vulnerable to illnesses and infections.
  • You start to feel nausea and some abdominal pain, thus causing weight loss and low appetite.
  • You decrease your memory, attention, and decision-making skills, making it harder to carry out daily tasks.
  • You become less responsible and start to neglect essential responsibilities or people around you.
  • You become more prone to legal trouble caused by the influence of alcohol or drugs, and you may end up in accidents or situations that may lead to arrest.
  • Your life will start to revolve around the substance you are abusing.
  • You will begin to have relationship problems with your partner, work, school, or any environment.
  • You develop sudden mood swings or irritable outbursts.

These are some of the common signs that show you’re struggling with substance abuse and need immediate care and attention.

“When it comes to codependency, denial has been called the hallmark of addiction. It’s true not only for drug (including alcohol) addicts, but also for their partners and family members.” — Darlene Lancer, JD, MFT

Immediate Care

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If professional help is unavailable, some of the things, you can do to help yourself recover include the following:

  1. Always look back at the root of your problems. Ask yourself why you’ve been taking these substances in the first place. Question yourself whether these substances are still helping you or just making you suffer even more.
  2. Look for someone you’re close with. Share your problems and worries with them rather than taking these substances. Sometimes, all you need is an outlet, and ranting is one of the most effective ways.
  3. Be open to the possibility of seeking professional help. Let people know of your condition so that there can be someone to help guide you to recovery.
  4. Develop other forms of outlets such as getting a new hobby, start exercising, or create a healthy diet.

These are some things you can consider before seeking professional help.

 

8 Causes of Substance Abuse

Being a substance abuser is not a label that anyone secretly wants to have. No one wakes up one day and decides to drink bottles of liquor, smoke packets of cigarettes, or inhale cocaine or meth religiously just for kicks. No, it is usually a coping mechanism for things that may have happened as far back as the person’s childhood years.

“For most people, the addiction process starts off rather innocently, i.e., a strong desire to overcome challenges related to socially engaging with others, numb negative feelings, manage psychological or physical pain.” — Tarra Bates-Duford, Ph.D., MFT

Check out the possible causes of substance abuse below.

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Trauma

Drugs and alcohol have a strong pull for people who went through or are still going through an ordeal. Whether it’s emotional or sexual violence, such substances offer them a leeway to forget traumatic experiences momentarily. Furthermore, studies reveal that the female victims show a higher probability of becoming addicted compared to their male counterparts. 

Lack of Confidence

The society has a lot of predefined social and beauty standards that make it difficult for some to accept even themselves. If they try to remedy the issue and it doesn’t work, they may opt for drinking or using drugs to uplift the spirits.

Peer Pressure

The influence of friends who do not mean well can affect not only a teen but also an adult who can’t find inner peace. These folks can persuade you to think that pot or alcohol is the answer to your worries until you become addicted to it.

Mental Disorder

Mental disorders like depression and anxiety bring pain to the patient goes beyond the physical level. They suck joy and motivation out of an individual, and that’s enough to ruin their lives and careers. To feel cheerful again, some resort to taking antidepressants more often than what the physician prescribed and eventually commit substance abuse.

“It’s not adaptive when we deny warning signs of a treatable illness or problem out of fear.” — Darlene Lancer, JD, MFT

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Stress 

Professionals and homemakers alike are prone to acquiring stress on a daily basis. Instead of meditating or distracting themselves with inoffensive activities, however, many choose to smoke or drink to relieve stress. This can quickly develop into an addiction if you don’t watch yourself.

Life Pressures

For a person who often receives a lot of pressure to do their best in their respective industry, drugs are a much-needed form of distraction. It allows them to tune everything and everyone out and just be in their world for a bit.

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“A lot of our stress is about what we can’t control, yet we all indulge in some degree of magical thinking that tells us that somehow worrying or considering every potential negative outcome will solve the problem or at least protect us. Rather than repeatedly setting off warnings in our heads that tell us to panic, why not give ourselves permission to stay in the moment and deal with what is rather than what might be?” — Lisa Firestone, Ph.D.

Rebellion

Some teenagers with busy or nagging parents turn to harmful substances as a way of getting their attention. They feel like the adults won’t hear them out unless they get in trouble as dangerous as addiction. Others use substances as an act of defiance the parents’ strict rules or to deal with family issues they’re too ashamed to speak of in front of friends or teachers.

Acquired Behavior

Substance abuse is also not far from reality for someone who grew up with drugs, cigarettes, and alcohol immediately available around the house. It won’t seem strange for a child, especially if that’s all they saw and knew from the beginning. They may even carry the notion that using those substances are OK until adulthood.