Saturday, December 28, 2019

Finding Recovery in 2020

New Year’s Eve is an interesting time in the field of addiction medicine. This a time when men and women in recovery have to go above and beyond to protect their program. It’s also a time when many people decide to reach out for assistance with the hope of adopting a program of addiction recovery.

At Hemet Valley Recovery Center & Sage Retreat, we hope that you were able to maintain your sobriety through Christmas. Doing so is no easy feat, but if you stuck to your recovery routine, then you were probably able to stay on track. If so, please acknowledge your achievement, especially if you are in your first year of recovery.

Still, New Year’s Eve is a real test for individuals committed to leading a lifestyle free from drugs and alcohol. Around every corner, one can encounter a person, place, or thing that could trigger a relapse. It’s vitally important to stick close to your support network in the coming days to avoid encountering risky situations.

If you found a formula for abstaining during Christmas, then apply it to the impending holiday. Attend your regular meetings, look for opportunities to be of service, and do not deviate from the course you take from one day to the next.

Hopefully, you have already created a plan for navigating New Year’s Eve without placing your recovery at risk. Just like Christmas, meetings of recovery will be commencing around the clock on December 31st. Attend as many meetings as necessary to ensure that your sobriety is not compromised. Ask your peers how they plan to bring in the new year; one of the members of your support group is probably hosting a gathering, and your presence is welcomed.

Adopting a Program of Recovery for the New Year

The beginning of any year is synonymous with resolutions. Perhaps you are ready to make significant changes in your life, such as starting a journey of recovery? If that is the case, please know that help is available to all who desire to heal from addiction.

At HVRC, we welcome anyone caught in the cycle of addiction, and individuals with co-occurring mental illness to reach out. Not only are we in-network with most insurers, but we are also licensed as a Chemical Dependency Rehabilitation Hospital (CDRH). As such, we stand out from the myriad of addiction treatment centers across the country for a number of reasons. We can provide all the vital services of early recovery, from detox to aftercare, under one roof.

Those who yearn to lead a life free from mind-altering substances and dependency will benefit significantly from having access to over 185 physicians representing most medical disciplines, as Hemet Valley Recovery Center is part of the Hemet Valley Medical Center campus in Hemet, CA.  We can treat and get people on the path to long-term recovery, no matter the conditions a patient presents with when they seek care.

You can visit our website to read about the various programs and services offered at HVRC, or you can call our highly trained admissions staff. Making the decision to enter into treatment is never made lightly; there are questions you will have that you will want to be answered before you take the first step with HVRC.

Let 2020 be the year where you begin the life-changing journey of addiction recovery. We are confident that you will be impressed with our facility after speaking with our team.

Getting Help for a Love One

Many people struggle to see that their alcohol or substance use has become untenable; denial is a common component of addiction. Please contact HVRC if you would like assistance with getting your loved one the help they need. Our team can guide you in several ways, increasing the likelihood that the person you care about will agree to seek treatment.

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Global Disease Burden of Alcohol

With all the discussion in the news about illicit drug use, it can be easy to gloss over the dangers of legal, mind-altering substances. Alcohol, for instance, is embedded into not only the fabric of American culture but much of the western world. Experts estimate that drinking is responsible for 88,000 deaths in the United States each year. However, the actual death toll is likely much higher.

Drinking alcohol can cause systemic problems in the human body. With each passing year, scientists find new links between alcohol consumption and disease. Currently, the American Cancer Association supported research found that alcohol increases the risk of:
  • Mouth cancer
  • Pharyngeal (upper throat) cancer
  • Esophageal (food pipe) cancer
  • Laryngeal (voice box) cancer
  • Breast cancer
  • Colon, Rectum, and Bowel cancer
  • Liver cancer
Aside from cancer, drinking is known to cause many other fatal diseases such as cirrhosis of the liver, pancreatitis, and heart disease. Furthermore, prolonged and heavy alcohol use can lead to alcohol dependence and alcohol use disorder; both can be an impetus for the development of mental illnesses. When mental and behavioral health disorders are left untreated, the risk of suicidal ideation and attempts increases exponentially.

There is not much that can be said about alcohol use – even moderate consumption – that is good. Simply put, alcohol is poisonous to the human mind and body.

Alcohol is a Leading Cause of Death

Without any doubt, alcohol can cause a myriad of problems for those who imbibe; yet, the substance is legal, and companies generate billions of dollars from the substance each year. Public health organizations work tirelessly to educate people around the globe about the dangers of alcohol. Still, billions of people continue to imbibe despite the risks.

A new study – funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation – published recently in the medical journal The Lancet shows that beer, wine, and liquor are killing more people than previously thought, USA Today reports. Researchers found that alcohol use is associated with 2.8 million deaths each year. The research indicates that alcohol was the seventh-leading risk factor for premature death and disability globally in 2016. Nearly 1 in 10 deaths of people ages 15 to 49 years-old could be tied to alcohol use.

"If everyone cut their consumption in half, we could save a million lives globally," said lead author Max Griswold of the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington. 

The findings come from a systematic analysis of alcohol use for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2016. Researchers analyzed 694 studies to estimate worldwide drinking patterns, according to the article. They also looked at 592 studies plus 28 million people in 195 countries to better understand alcohol's health risks. The data is from the years 1990 to 2016. The authors write:

"Alcohol use is a leading risk factor for global disease burden and causes substantial health loss. We found that the risk of all-cause mortality, and of cancers specifically, rises with increasing levels of consumption, and the level of consumption that minimises health loss is zero. These results suggest that alcohol control policies might need to be revised worldwide, refocusing on efforts to lower overall population-level consumption."

Alcohol Use Disorder Treatment

Please contact Hemet Valley Recovery Center & Sage Retreat if alcohol use is causing significant problems in your life. We offer several programs and create custom treatment plans to meet each client's unique needs.

As a Chemical Dependency Rehabilitation Hospital (CDRH), we can provide programs and specialty services all in one facility. Take the first step toward a life in recovery by calling us for a confidential assessment: 866-273-0868.

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Addiction Treatment: Achieving Long-Term Recovery

addiction treatment
People who use drugs and alcohol for extended periods and in hazardous ways put themselves at significant risk of developing an addiction and co-occurring mental health disorders. Around half of the people living with alcohol and substance use disorders also meet the criteria for a dual diagnosis. Note: co-occurring disorders and dual diagnosis are used interchangeably in the field of addiction medicine.

If you have been struggling with drugs and alcohol for months, years, or decades, then you probably require professional assistance. However, making the courageous decision to seek treatment is anything but easy. The hooks of the disease are deep, and the addictive mind will do anything to convince its host that the problem is not that severe.

Addicts and alcoholics live in denial, sometimes for decades, before they finally decide to seek assistance. They seek help in one of two ways, typically; either checking into an addiction treatment center or looking up a 12 Step meeting in their area. While both options are beneficial, severe cases usually require more than AA or NA can offer, at first.

The cycle of addiction is notoriously difficult to break. What’s more, those who are dependent on drugs and alcohol experience withdrawal symptoms when attempting to abstain. Such symptoms can be so uncomfortable that relapse is almost inevitable without professional supervision. Moreover, withdrawing from certain substances can cause severe health complications; without medical supervision, detox can have deadly outcomes.

Seeking Addiction Treatment with a Full Continuum of Care

If you feel that it’s time to turn your life around and break the disease cycle, then it’s imperative you speak to addiction medicine specialists first. Doing so will help you determine the severity of your condition and what course you should take for achieving the desired result of long-term recovery.

We would be remiss if we failed to share that not everyone in long-term recovery went to treatment. However, given the public health crisis regarding opioids, benzodiazepines, and methamphetamine, seeking professional assistance is strongly advisable. This is especially true when regarding the detoxification process.

Benzodiazepine and heavy alcohol use withdrawal can cause seizures that can prove deadly. The symptoms of opioid withdrawal are often so painful and uncomfortable that relapse occurs before a program of recovery even begins. Medications and environment closed off from the outside world are invaluable; they protect against health complications, ease discomfort, and mitigate the risk of being exposed to recovery-derailing influences.

Each person has a pretty good understanding of how long they have struggled with drug, alcohol, or co-occurring mental illness. Still, it’s always beneficial to reach out to treatment professionals before taking the first step toward recovery.

If it’s suggested that residential treatment will give you the best shot at achieving long-term recovering, then please heed the advice. Inpatient treatment separates people from their usual environs and all the stressors that contribute to addiction. In rehab, clients can safely withdraw from their substance of choice and then go on to learn valuable tools for sustained recovery; a full continuum of care also includes aftercare and alumni services.

Relapse most often occurs in the first one to three months of recovery. So, spending 30, 60, or 90 days in treatment will shield you from triggers that lead to cravings to use. What’s more, counselors teach effective relapse prevention techniques that clients can utilize after discharge. Such individuals can then pass on the information they learned in treatment with their support group peers at meetings.

California Chemical Dependency Rehabilitation Hospital

Please contact Hemet Valley Recovery Center & Sage Retreat to speak with our Admissions and Assessment department. You can talk with nurses and chemical dependency counselors who can answer questions and address any concerns that you may have about residential treatment. Please call for a confidential assessment today to learn if HVRC is right for you or a loved one: 866-273-0868.

Friday, December 6, 2019

Paying Your Recovery Forward

At Hemet Valley Recovery Center & Sage Retreat, we would like to commend everyone in recovery who navigated Thanksgiving clean and sober. As we mentioned last week, major holidays can be taxing for people working a program, especially for those in early recovery.

Making it through the holiday is no small achievement because of the many triggers that can come about during the emotional days of the year. If you managed to stay sober, then you probably utilized your recovery toolbox. Hopefully, you took the time to think about gratitude and about all the people who are helping you on this journey of healing.

Gratitude and paying it forward are two vital components necessary for achieving lasting recovery. There are times when it’s challenging to be thankful for both your recovery and the people in your support network. If ever you find yourself slipping back into a selfish mindset, it’s crucial to pause and remember how far you have come since first getting sober. Chances are your life today is a complete 180 from just a short time ago.

Still, it’s prudent always to be looking for methods of paying forward what has been freely given to you. We recover together, not alone. This means that a significant number of people are instrumental to your continued progress. Be sure to share with such people how grateful you are for their support. What’s more, ask if you can be of service in anyone of them or your home-group.

It’s often said in the rooms of recovery: you cannot keep it, if you do not give it away. So, always be on the lookout for opportunities to be useful to your peers, and especially to those who have less time than you in the program.

Paying it Forward in Recovery

In every meeting across the country and beyond, there are service opportunities available. Examples include making coffee for the group, bringing cookies or healthy snacks, stacking chairs before and after the meetings, and offering to lead a meeting.

Service positions also exist at every recovery meeting. Most meetinghouses have a few stipulations for applying for a rotating service job, i.e., having worked all the steps, regular attendance at your home group, and some require that you have a minimum length of time in sobriety. Such restrictions vary from one group to the next but talk to your sponsor to see if you might be eligible.

Having a service role at your home group is beneficial for several reasons. First, it is one way to pay it forward to the group. Second, it’s an excellent way to stay accountable; accountability is a pillar of addiction recovery. The more layers of accountability, the better protected you are from relapse.

Even if you are not yet ready to take on a service position, there are other ways you can aid the group. Showing up early to introduce yourself to newcomers and staying after the meeting to talk with them at greater length is exceptionally beneficial. Showing interest in newcomers, inviting them to grab a coffee to chat, not only helps the newcomer, it benefits you. Remember, addiction recovery is about carrying the message to the next generation.

If you have worked all the 12 Steps, then your sponsor may feel that you are ready to begin taking others through the Steps. If that is the case, talking to newcomers on a regular basis is a jumping-off point for sponsorship. Again, you cannot keep your recovery and the progress you have made without trying to help others in the same way you were assisted when newly sober.

California Addiction Program for Adults

If your life is unmanageable due to the use of drugs and alcohol or a co-occurring mental illness, then we invite you to reach out at your earliest convenience. HVRC is unique in several ways, including being licensed as a Chemical Dependency Rehabilitation Hospital (CDRH). The classification allows us to offer addiction recovery programs and specialty services all in one facility.

Please contact our admissions team today to learn more about the HVRC difference. 866-273-0868