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Energy Drinks and Addiction

While energy drinks are known to boost as person’s stamina and energy, they can also be highly addictive. These drinks contain high amounts of caffeine, which is just one of the reasons as to why a person can become addicted to drinking them. Drinking too many energy drinks in a short period of time can be very damaging to a person’s health. However, the effects can be far worse since addiction to energy drinks can heighten the risk of using other drugs and eventually suffering from drug abuse. The best way to avoid becoming addicted to energy drinks is by being educated about the dangers of these drinks and the links that they have to addiction.

 

Troublesome Links Between Energy Drinks and Addiction

 

Energy drinks act as a stimulant that affect the reward centers of your brain. People experience more intense feelings of happiness as well as a substantial boost in energy. As is the case with prescription stimulant medications, it’s possible to become addicted to energy drinks. Consuming these beverages on an occasional basis shouldn’t cause any problems. However, regular consumption can start making the body dependent on the drink in order to receive the energy that’s necessary for normal bodily functions. When the body and brain become dependent on energy drinks or a similar drug, it’s possible for side effects and withdrawal symptoms to develop whenever the substance hasn’t been consumed for a long time, which will in turn heighten cravings of the substance.

 

While addiction to energy drinks is harmful, the addicted individual may be prone to taking more serious drugs if their body starts to become tolerant to the effects of the energy drink. For instance, they may need to drink more of the beverage in order to receive the same energy boost that they once did. If so, this individual may start to experiment with other drugs that can provide them with the same boost or “high” that they were once able to achieve. A study that was performed by the National Institute of Drug Abuse found that individuals who regularly consume energy drinks have a much higher chance of taking prescription stimulants and cocaine. This study has found that the risk of alcohol abuse is also greater.

 

While energy drinks have yet to be classified as gateway drugs, there are some dangerous links between these beverage and drug abuse and addiction. Keep in mind that this stimulant affects adolescent brains more severely than it does with adults. Teenagers who consume high amounts of energy drinks during their adolescent years will oftentimes turn to the use and eventual abuse of more serious drugs as they grow older. It’s also much easier for teenagers to build a strong tolerance to the effects of energy drinks than it is with adults.

 

Signs of Energy Drink Addiction

If you suspect that someone close to you may be suffering from an energy drink addiction, there are a wide variety of signs and symptoms that you should look for to help determine if treatment is necessary. When a person has started to become addicted to energy drinks, they will need to consume this caffeine so that their energy can reach normal levels. If these people don’t consume energy drinks for a certain amount of time, they will begin to experience withdrawal symptoms, which primarily include regular headaches and fatigue.

 

Mood changes and issues with concentration are also likely. Individuals who consume too many energy drinks will likely experience increased blood pressure, palpitations, and irregular heart rates. While it can sometimes be difficult to identify these symptoms, it’s important to look for any changes in a person’s behavior that come with drinking a large amount of energy drinks. These behavioral changes could be the first signs that the person is becoming addicted.

 

 

Additional Health Risks to Consider

 

Along with addiction, there are also some additional health risks that everyone should be aware of when regularly consuming energy drinks. Because of the high amount of caffeine found in energy drinks, it’s possible to become intoxicated from the caffeine, which means that withdrawal symptoms are possible. There’s even a chance that the addicted individual could overdose on caffeine, which could be life-threatening if not treated immediately. Some of the other health risks to keep in mind include:

 

  • Cardiovascular issues
  • Obesity
  • Dental Problems
  • Sleep disorders like insomnia and sleep apnea
  • Calcium deficiency

 

What Addiction Recovery Involves

 

Drug addiction is considered to be a chronic disease, which means that it’s essentially impossible to become fully cured from the disease once it has developed. In some ways, the body will always crave whatever drug or drink the addicted individual has become dependent on. However, addiction recovery is possible and can be very effective at lessening dependence on the drug in question. Any individual who has become addicted to another drug like cocaine because of their energy drink usage should seek addiction treatment immediately.

 

This treatment can either be administered in an inpatient or outpatient capacity. Outpatient treatment for addiction takes place several days each week for a couple of hours each day. The treatment will be provided at some sort of outpatient facility, which could be a medical office or a hospital. The addiction treatment provided in outpatient care is very similar to inpatient care but with the added benefit of being able to go home at anytime. Inpatient rehabilitation for a drug addiction or an addiction to energy drinks takes place in a residential facility where the patient will be required to stay 24/7 for a certain period of time, which could be anywhere from a month to more than a year.

 

When enrolling into an inpatient care program, treatment will begin with a detoxification process, which is designed to make sure that the drugs or energy drinks safely leave the body without causing severe withdrawal symptoms. Once the substances are out of the body, further treatment can begin. This treatment typically includes group therapy, individual counseling, and even family therapy if necessary. Group therapy aims to provide attendees with a welcoming and friendly atmosphere among people who are going through the exact same issues, while one-on-one counseling is designed to help the addicted individual identify what has caused their addiction, which should help them manage the addiction in the future.

 

While addiction to the caffeine found in energy drinks is problematic, the high that’s caused by strong doses of caffeine can invariably make an individual yearn for something stronger. Addiction to caffeine can be difficult to overcome. However, this type of addiction is not nearly as severe as becoming addicted to prescription stimulants or cocaine, both of which provide a similar yet more potent boost of energy as energy drinks.

 

Addiction treatment is so important because of how damaging a long-term addiction to stimulants can be to a person’s health. When abusing these drugs for a lengthy period of time, both psychological and physical effects will invariably occur. The psychological effects of long-term abuse include delusions, hallucinations, paranoia, and depression. The physical effects can be even more severe and include:

 

  • Stroke
  • Seizures
  • Muscle deterioration
  • Cardiovascular damage
  • Headaches
  • Breathing issues
  • Extreme weight loss
  • Gastrointestinal problems

 

Dependence on stimulants and energy drinks can be reversed with treatment, which means that the long-term effects of this dependence can be mitigated if treated early enough.

 

If you believe that someone close to you has recently become addicted to energy drinks or has started taking more potent drugs because of this dependence, make sure that you seek addiction recovery as soon as possible.

Executives are Performing Better with “Digital Detox” Programs

If you’re feeling a Pavlovian effect when you get texts, emails, alerts, etc. and/or find yourself picking up your phone constantly anyway? – it’s time for digital detox.

You don’t have to sleep under your desk like Marissa Meyer and Elon Musk in order to need digital detox. Look for signs like being distracted by technology to the point that you can’t focus, your creativity is stifled, and you have trouble making decisions.

Carrying on the old 90’s tradition of always being online, is pase. This sends the message to the rest of the company that if their not online then they’re slacking. The old online all the time mentality is counterproductive. Afterall, the point of technology is to improve our lives not make our lives worse.

Cellphones, tech gadgets, and computers are awesome and most everyone loves them because they offer so many benefits. However, if not handled properly with a digital health mindset, we can get paint ourselves into a corner. We’re constantly force fed information all day everyday. We get worn down to the point where we no longer have the stamina, snap and intellectual horsepower to keep up the tempo.

As an Executive with your cellphone in hand, when speaking to employees do you think they feel you’re paying attention, are appreciated and are being understood? What about strategizing in the boardroom with your team, partners, customers, and/or investors. What would be going through their minds after that meeting, was it productive, goals accomplished, decisions made properly?

Regularly scheduled digital detox programs will benefit your health, your company, and all of those around you.

 

Initially letting go of your smartphone is unnerving for most people. Usually before long we become more creative and productive. Detox clients sometimes step back and strategize on what phone activities have a positive return and which activities have a negative return. Then create a plan and decide how to execute.

Therapy and Activities that Help:

Nature immersion and adventure therapy are just a couple of ways that will help defuse the digital addiction. Some activities may include, snorkeling, hiking, horseback riding, indoor rock climbing, meditation, Yoga, paddle boarding, zip-lining, etc.

We have programs at Maui Recovery and Omega Recovery in Austin, TX.

 

Alcohol Detox in Maui Hawaii

An estimated 17 million Americans suffer from alcohol abuse. Americans that have problems with alcohol qualify them for diagnosis of an alcohol use disorder, and the cost of alcohol abuse and use in the country is estimated to be significantly over $200 million per year. This places the burden on society as a result of alcohol abuse, this does not include the impact on productivity. A large portion of the costs associated with alcohol addiction are due to medical complications associated with moderate to heavy alcohol abuse. For alcoholics in recovery from an alcohol use disorder, a significant portion of their initial success involves being able to deal with the complications associated with physical addiction to alcohol. The physical dependence that occurs as a result of having an alcohol use disorder can result in severe withdrawal symptoms that can even be deadly. Medically assisted detox is often required to help the person maintain their abstinence from alcohol in the early stages of recovery.

 

Alcohol Dependency

Alcohol dependence, aka alcoholism, is the most serious form of drinking problem and describes a strong, uncontrollable, desire to drink. An alcoholic is powerless over the drug. Alcohol is one of the most powerful, underestimated, socially accepted and readily available drug in the world.

Drinking dictates the day to day life of an alcoholic, over time, excessive drinking leads to increased physical tolerance or experiencing withdrawal symptoms if they stop.

There are varying degrees of alcohol dependence and they don’t always involve excessive levels of drinking. If you find that you need to have a bottle of wine most nights of the week, or always go for a few drinks after work, just to unwind, you’re likely to be drinking at a level that could impact your long-term health.

You could also be dependent on alcohol. If you find it very difficult to enjoy yourself or relax without having a drink, you could have become psychologically dependent on alcohol. Physical dependence can follow, that’s when your body shows withdrawal symptoms, such as sweating, shaking and nausea, when your blood alcohol level falls.

Rapid Resolution Therapy (RRT)

Rapid Resolution Therapy is a gentle and effective therapeutic modality, created by Dr. John Connelly, LCSW that resolves trauma and other distress in as little as one session. Because the root causes of problems are pinpointed and cleared, positive changes endure. Negative emotions and destructive behavioral patterns are eliminated.

Unlike other forms of treatment, with Rapid Resolution it is not necessary to relive past events or experience any pain. Rapid Resolution therapy integrates hypnosis, cognitive and playful techniques, to name a few, allowing for optimal healing through multiple levels of the mind. This type of therapy leads to dramatic improvements in thoughts, feelings and behavior. Rapid Resolution Therapy has effectively treated PTSD, other trauma/stress related disorders, anxiety, panic attacks, sleep disturbance, frozen grief, guilt, resentment and even aided in successful recovery from addiction.

Along with creating Rapid Resolution Therapy, Dr. Connelly has also founded The Institute for Survivors of Sexual Violence, a non-profit (501C3) organization providing mental health professionals with state-of-the-art training in advanced clinical methods of eliminating the negative influence of trauma. You can learn more about Rapid Resolution Therapy and how to find providers in Hawaii and all over the country by contacting me directly for a referral or by visiting the main Rapid Resolution Therapy website: www.rapidresolutiontherapy.org

RESOURCES

Article on Army website discussing RRT:  http://bit.ly/2ZTmQxh

Ted Talks video: “Life Changing power of words.” http://bit.ly/2GZDQuw

The Early Warning Signs of Screen Addiction

As if kids and teenagers don’t have enough problems to deal with in life, there’s a relatively new phenomenon that’s causing substantial problems for them across the world. It’s called screen or digital addiction. Some experts will liken this new affliction to more familiar addictions like slot machine addiction. In other words, the individual gets stimuli from a device (computer, tablet, smartphone) that has a screen, and the stimuli becomes so powerful that it begins interfering with the person’s life.

 

To be fair, screen addiction is creating as many problems for adults as it is for kids and teenagers. The number of adults who can’t seem to put Facebook or Instagram aside for even a moment defies logic unless one would view it as a legitimate addiction. After all, it is a legitimate addiction. With that said, screen addiction is having a profound negative effect on the development of kids, and that’s a significant issue for society as a whole. The following information is going to focus on identifying the early signs of screen addiction and screen addiction treatment.

 

The Importance of Early Detection

As is the case with any addiction, early detection will usually result in the minimization of problems associated with the addiction. As indicated above, early detection of screen addiction among kids and teenagers is extremely important because of developmental issues.

 

The simple truth is kids need time for exposure to all kinds of stimuli for proper brain development. They need time to work on social skills, and they need exercise for proper physical development. If someone spends too much time in front of a digital device, that’s time they are not using to address other facets of life.

 

Kids will never admit they are spending too much time surfing the net or playing video games. It’s incumbent on parents to stay aware of what their kids are doing. If a parent fails to detect a problem before their child starts to show signs of screen addiction, tech addiction therapy becomes a necessary consideration. No one enjoys the prospect of seeing their kids have to spend time in an addiction recovery program.

 

The Early Signs of Screen Addiction Among Kids

Again, the following information is going to focus on the early warning signs of screen addiction among kids and teenagers. At a broader level, many of these same warning signs could be applicable to adults who are showing signs of similar problems.

 

There’s many ways a screen addiction with manifest itself within a child’s personality and behavior. To keep things simple, the following list will focus on eight of the most common signs a child may be falling victim to screen addiction, resulting in the need for screen addiction treatment:

 

  1. Increasing Time Spent With a Device – Parents should be aware of the activities of their children. Along with that should come a sense of when too much is too much. If the amount of time a child is spending with their electronic devices is constantly on the rise, there’s a good chance there could be an addiction forming.

 

  1. Loss of Interest in Other Activities – Beyond not spending time doing other things, kids will begin to show a complete lack of interest in even contemplating doing other things. If a parent sees the child setting aside toys or other previously enjoyed hobbies in favor of digital devices, it’s time to worry.

 

  1. Preoccupies Their Thoughts – Even when a child isn’t actually in front of a screen, they may exhibit a tendency to always be thinking and talking about their interactions with video games or the Internet. This could have a significant impact on the child’s ability to focus on school work.

 

  1. Failure to Socialize – This is a major problem. Video games and the Internet are poor substitutions for interacting with other people. A failure to spend time learning to socialize with other people, particularly other kids, can lead to severe developmental problems. Be particularly leery of a child not having appropriate interactions with other family members. It can have a profound effect on the overall functioning of the family unit.

 

  1. Onset of Behavioral Problems – If a child starts to show signs of agitation or anger when not allowed access to their electronic devices, this is a problem. A child might also show signs of inappropriate behavior towards people of authority (teachers, relatives, babysitters). If that’s the case, there’s trouble brewing.

 

  1. Inability to Focus on Other Things – Kids need a well-rounded scope of experiences. If a child is not able to sit their devices down long enough to do other things, it’s going to interfere with certain aspects of their development. Typically, kids will see other things as distraction as opposed to seeing their screen activities as a distraction.

 

  1. Hiding Electronic Device Use – Sensing they are receiving scrutiny for playing video games or being online too much, some kids will resort to hiding their use. Be weary of kids sneaking their devices to school or hiding them under the sheets until the lights go out at bedtime.

 

  1. Using Device Affects Child’s Mood – Parents should look for mood swings. In some cases, children may act lethargic or uninterested in life when not in front of a screen. Once they regain access, their mood immediately elevates. Devices should not have ability to influence a child’s mood.

 

Tech Addiction Recovery

 

Remember, the above information focuses largely on screen addiction as it pertains to kids and teenagers. However, the effects on adults are quite similar. There is a loss of ambition, a withdrawing from relationships, ignoring of responsibilities and behavioral changes.

 

Once an addiction takes hold, the individual is trapped. Without access to tech addiction therapy from a professional and reputable addiction treatment center, the prognosis is not good. A strong tech addiction recovery depends a great deal on the quality of treatment the individual gets.

 

Much of the focus of screen addiction treatment is placed on psychology and behavior. It’s very important for addiction counselors to get at the root causes of the individual’s addiction. Without doing so, it becomes increasingly more difficult to determine the proper course of treatment.

 

Counselors will also want to focus on how the addiction is creating behavioral problems. They will typically use evidence based treatment modalities like Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Dialectical Behavioral Therapy. The objective of these modalities is to identify behaviors and implement coping mechanisms to help modify them.

 

It’s never too late to get help for a screen addiction. Like other addictions, there is no cure. There’s only the possibility of arresting the illness and setting it aside. For better or for worse, recovery from a screen addiction will likely require the individual to stay away from devices except when absolutely necessary. That could be a real challenge for someone who works on the Internet or needs to run their business through social media. For kids and teenagers, it incumbent on parents to do their job and find ways to control the activities of their children.

5 Addiction Recovery Hacks

Sober living can be a difficult feat for those who are dealing with alcoholism and other drug addiction problems. As much as you’d love to get through the initial stages of anxiety and depression so that you can enjoy sober living, your codependency on drugs can make a relapse feel like an inevitable instance. However, you can fix your codependency on alcoholism and drug addiction through the proper techniques of addiction recovery. We’re going to share with you some great ways to overcome anxiety, depression, and addiction in our five easy addiction recovery
hacks below.

Failure to plan is planing to fail.

1 – Create A Structured Schedule With New Habits

One of the biggest problems that you’re going to face is simply the urge to fall back into old habits. This becomes especially apparent when you don’t have any sort of structured plan. It’s easy to get bored and revert back. You need to think about the things in your life that need to be changed
first. This includes everything that would interfere with a drug-free lifestyle. Some examples include hanging out with people who do drugs or spending time with the same people who you indulged within the past.
Once you have a list of habits that will need to be changed, it’s time to create a structured schedule. We’re not talking about running yourself ragged trying to be someone completely new, but it will help to have a structure to each day to ensure that your mind is somewhat distracted
from your old habits. Take some time at the beginning of each day or week to plan out your schedule. This can help you focus on creating and obtaining long-term goals while protecting yourself from relapsing.

2 – Get Physically Active

While exercise may be the last thing on your mind right now, it’s going to help. You’ll need to be able to fill the void that used to be taken up by partaking in your favorite drug or drink of choice. What better way to fill that time than with some physical movement that will get your body feeling
alive? Exercise and general recreational activities can play a major rule in reducing your stress and restoring your sense of balance in life. You’ll also enjoy the benefits of better nutrition and overall health.
If you’re not overly interested in the traditional workout, then we suggest finding some sort of recreational activity that you enjoy doing. For example, join a local team sport, go hiking, go biking, or just simply get moving some other way. Something as simple as fishing a few times a week can get you outside and moving. The more used to the activity that your body gets, the more strenuous activities you can partake in on a regular basis.

3 – Develop New Relationships

While this may be a scary thought, the current relationships you have in your life can be triggers for relapse. We’re not saying to completely ignore everyone you’ve developed a relationship with up to this point, but realize they’re part of your old lifestyle. You need to introduce some new
relationships into your life in order to bring on a new life for you.
They always say to pick your friends wisely. Your thought process should be along these lines. If you’re a recovering alcoholic, don’t focus on creating relationships with those who spend their weekends at the bar. While they may be great people, they’re just going to enable you to relapse.
We know that it can be easier to make friends with those who you’ve had much in common with, such as hanging out at the bar. However, you must work to craft new relationships with people who have a different lifestyle than your older associates. For example, making friends with
someone from a local sports team can allow you to be influenced to participate in more physical activity.

4 – Wear Something To Symbolize Your Commitment To Sobriety

While there are many wristlets, shirts, hats, and other decors that you can sport showing off your sobriety, we want you to think beyond that. Instead, think about an item that you can wear each day. This may be a special watch or custom band. It doesn’t need to say recovering or sobriety on
it. Rather, you are the only one who has to know what it means to you.
When you wake up each morning and see your wrist band, you know that it means sobriety to you. It can help you take control of your choices and consistently remind you of your commitment to yourself to stay sober. Many recovering addictions find that it’s hard to remember their emotional
commitments in times when stress is high. They tend to make regretful decisions based on a whim. Imagine having something physically there to remind you not to drink or use. This is what your piece of adornment will do for you.

5 – Make Contingency Plans

A big issue with the task of staying sober is falling off the bandwagon. As human beings, we have this urge to think that we completely messed everything up when we do one thing wrong. For example, if you find yourself drinking one beer, suddenly you look at it as a failure on your part.
You say ‘screw it, I might as well have another cause I already messed it up!” This can lead to a drastic fall off the edge of the sobriety cliff. Instead, work on making contingency plans to help when you make that initial wrong mistake. This will save you from completely jumping off of the
edge and going way back into your addiction. Sit down and think up as many viable scenarios as you can. For example, in your old lifestyle, you
may have immediately pulled into the parking lot of a liquor store when you drove past. This is something that you’re going to have to create a contingency plan for. A solution may be if I pull into the liquor store parking lot, I’ll look at the picture of my son in my wallet, remember that I’m stronger than my addiction, and simply drive back out of the parking lot. This may seem like an easy plan, but you may be surprised just how quickly your mind will jump to pulling out that picture when you find yourself in that scenario. By having a game plan of how you’re going to
handle scenarios, it gives you a choice between old habits and new ones.
Overcoming addiction of any kind is a difficult feat for everyone. There’s no magical pill that will change you overnight just like there’s no diet pill that will take you from overweight to thin in a week. Creating a new addiction-free lifestyle for yourself is something that you’re going to have to
work for. The major components of success rely on being consistent and level-headed. Realize that mishaps are going to happen and that you can deal with them. No one is perfect and it takes commitment to live the life that we desire. The above addiction recovery hacks are a great basis to get you started on your new lifestyle. We encourage you to focus on all five areas and work on being as consistent as possible with them. As you endeavor more and more into your addiction-free lifestyle, you’ll be able to create new habits that steer your life in the direction that you want instead of in the direction that you don’t.

How Video Gaming Addiction Can Harm Your Marriage

It’s no secret that drug addiction, alcoholism, and even social media addiction are among the leading causes of divorces today. However, there’s a relatively new form of addiction that has begun rearing its ugly head and is quickly becoming one of the leading causes of failed marriages; video gaming addiction.

This form of tech addiction has a profound impact on the real lives of the gamers who spend their time immersed in virtual worlds. A good illustration of the consequences of screen addiction is the wildly popular and highly addictive video game known as Fortnite.

Fortnite took the world by storm in late 2017 and currently has 125 million players. If Fortnite was a country, it would be the 11th most populous nation in the world. This just goes to show how enthralling the game is.

Unfortunately, it is causing problems in marriages. In fact, a popular divorce assistance website in the U.K revealed that  over 200 divorce petitions filed recently cited Fortnite specifically as being one of the reasons they wanted the divorce.

Why are Video Games Causing Disruptions in Marriages?

More and more people today turn to the internet when looking for an escape from the stresses of daily living. Much like how some people turn to drugs. The internet is abound with endless amusement, communication, and information. Another thing that the internet is widely utilized for is video gaming.

Since their inception in the 1970s in arcades, video games have influenced social dynamics in the way people communicate and build relationships. Online gaming has taken this a step further as it allows you to play with or against someone thousands of miles away while seated on your couch.

In spite of its good intentions, that convenience is causing problems in marriages since the interactive nature of the game causes the player to be so dedicated to their online character and building virtual relationships with other gamers across the planet that they forget about the person they are sharing a house with.

2016 study done on the sales, usage and demographic data of the video game industry revealed that over 60 percent of American homes have at least one individual that regularly plays video games. Moreover, over 50 percent of the people who are frequent gamers admit to utilizing the social aspect of gaming.

And because the average age of a gamer is 35 and the average age of marriage is 25.8 for women and 28.3 for men, it is safe to presume that a lot of young marriages have some kind of video game in their homes.

Another study found out that 75% of gamers’ spouses said that they wished that their significant other would stop putting so much of their energy into video games and put more effort into the marriage.

Immersive Video Games

There is a specific genre of video games known as online role-playing games. Examples of games in this genre include League Legends, Dungeons and Dragons, Everquest, and World of Warcraft.

This genre is immersive as it requires the gamer to devote copious amounts of time developing their virtual character inside the game. Perhaps, it is because they allow the gamer to develop the ideal character that they wish they were in real life. To the gamer, especially one looking for an escape, doing this is much easier than putting in actual effort to improve themselves in the real world.

Nonetheless, this virtual character development takes so much dedication that the gamers’ outside interests and relationships are often left in ruins.

The other genre of video games that has cultivated a cult-like following is the first person shooter games. A popular example of such a game is Call of Duty which is a battle simulation where online gamers can face off against each other. The game is further intensified because the gamers wear headsets so they can communicate with each other as they do battle. As you can expect, the language used during such situations can be quite colorful, and the game is likely to start using such language in their dialogue in the real world.

What’s more, violent video games have been shown to increase the actual aggression of the gamer. When you combine a lack of time for their loved one(s), curse words, and heightened aggression, the concoction that follows is one that has all the hallmarks of an abusive relationship, even without actual violence being involved.

The Risk of Addiction

As we have noted, the immersive nature of online video games is the reason why gamers are unable to tend to the psychological, and sometimes physical, needs of their significant other.

In fact, a study on the reasons for divorce found that of the spouses who cite unreasonable behavior as being the catalyst behind their need to end the marriage, 15 percent of them believed that their spouses put gaming before them and the relationship.

Their need to constantly be gaming creates an impulse control problem, thereby leading to a video gaming addiction.

Falling under the same category as screen addiction and tech addiction, video game addiction refers to an impulse control disorder that is characterized by the excessive and compulsive overuse of video games. People who suffer from this addiction will utilize the online gaming platform to connect with real people via the internet, as a substitute for real-life human connection.

The following are some of the signs that your partner is addicted to video games:

 They would rather be gaming than attend to you, themselves or their job.

 They will play late into the night and are often sacrificing their sleep. Sex and nighttime conversations are often out of the question.

 They do not want to discuss their mood or feelings.

 They refuse to admit that there is a problem.

 They refuse to reduce their gaming time.

 They often forget about their commitments.

 They consistently break their promise to spend more time with you.

 They lash at you for ‘not understanding’ whenever you bring up the issue of their gaming compulsion.

 They won’t consider therapy for their gaming obsession.

Research done on the topic reveals that, at times, it is not the time spent gaming that causes problems in the marriage, but rather, it is the resulting arguments that accompany when the other spouse complains.

Moreover, compulsive gaming causes issues such as poor marital adjustment that comes from not doing things together or having serious conversations. The result is that the bond that they had starts to weaken and eventually reaches a point where the marriage becomes insufferable. At this point, divorce is usually the only option left.

Mental Health Problem

Recently, the World Health Organization recognized and included video game addiction as a legitimate mental health problem. Fortnite, in particular, is one of the most cited games that have led to the addiction, affecting players of all ages, and even forcing some into rehab. Just as with any other kind of dependency, video game addiction strains a marriage in that one partner does not care about the needs of the other.

Admittedly, one can understand the allure of video games. Today’s video games, in particular, are designed to reel in the player and hook them. That is how some people get addicted. For others, they might already be having an underlying problem leading them to seek out video games and other technological distractions to feel the void inside without having to turn to something that might damage their health such as drugs. Nonetheless, an addiction is an addiction, and it will have a negative impact on your life.

If you feel that your gaming tendencies are straining your relationship, seeking help to overcome the dependency should be your first course of action. At our Recovery Center, we help gaming addicts get control of their dependency, so they are able to get their priorities in order. Our experts will help you or your loved one through a holistic approach that not only treats the addiction but addresses the triggers so that they cannot relapse. Contact us today; we are waiting to help.

The connection between drug use, video games, deadly weapons and school shootings.

In the wake of school shootings by teenagers, everyone is running back and forth trying to find a possible cause to these monstrosities. Why would a ‘normal’ kid suddenly go berserk and try to end the lives of their teachers and peers?

 

While each case is different due to the various variables that could have triggered each shooter, there are things that most of them have in common and which are worth investigating. Is there a link between video games, drug abuse, and the availability of violent weapons such as guns and the shootings? This article will discuss that connection.

 

The Connection between Video Games and School Shootings

Most high school going kids are more than likely active gamers. And while video games have been shown to significantly improve visual-spatial skills, there can be too much of a good thing. Video games, especially modern ones that are mission-centered, are designed to hook the individual for hours on end. Additionally, there are so many levels or layers to a game that it might take weeks or months for one to complete just one game. And with the thousands of games available, the individual is more than likely going to have a lot on their hands. This constant playing is likely to result in a condition known as video gaming addiction.

 

In fact, the World Health Organization recently added ‘gaming disorder’ to its list of mental health conditions.

 

Gaming disorder can be used synonymously with video gaming addiction and refers to the condition where an individual loses control over their gaming habits, and they start prioritizing gaming over other interests.

 

But what does this have to do with shootings?

 

While some people play video games for purely recreational purposes, others use gaming as a coping mechanism for their stress and anxiety. As such, understanding the motivation behind the gaming is key to identifying the cause of their disorder. A study found that using gaming as a coping mechanism for stress resulted in even higher levels of stress.

 

To understand how video games are a contributory factor towards school shootings, let us look at the link between mental illnesses and school shootings.

 

The Connection between Mental Illness and School Shootings

According to the book, Gun Violence and Mental Illness, individuals who commit mass shootings are known to plan well in advance. They usually bottle up extreme feelings of anger and revenge. And because they are typically socially isolated, they tend to act alone most of the time.

 

The book further notes that there are common traits among the shooters in addition to historical factors that contribute to the massacres. In fact, a case study done on five murderers revealed that, during childhood, they began seeing people as uncaring and rejecting.

 

All subjects had been isolated or bullied during their childhoods, and they inevitably became loners who despaired over their social alienation. These led to paranoid tendencies such as grudge holding and suspiciousness.

 

Consequently, they spent a significant amount of time harboring feelings of resentment as they ruminated on past humiliations. This constant rumination eventually evolved into fantasies of violent revenge.

 

All the above are indicators of an underlying mental illness caused by the constant stress and anxiety felt by these individuals.

 

Coping Using Video Games

As a result of their social alienation, school shooters use video games as a means of coping. And they will spend hours on end playing these games. The American Psychological Association conducted a review of research and found out that individuals who play violent video games were more likely to engage in aggressive behavior.

 

If video games can foster violent behavior in mentally stable individuals, think about the impact they have on kids harboring violent revenge fantasies.

 

In addition to increasing an individual’s levels of aggression, violent video games have been found to desensitize gamers to violence. As a result, they have a lower value for human life. Consequently, the gamer’s lost empathy makes them more likely to take human life without the feelings of remorse that would affect a ‘normal’ person.

 

Drug Abuse and School Shootings

One of the more prominent mental health watchdogs, CCHR (the Citizens Commission on Human Rights), has been investigating school shootings since the Columbine High School incidence in 1999. The body’s investigation into school shootings reveals that at least 36 school shootings have been orchestrated by individuals using or withdrawing from the use of psychotropic drugs resulting in 80 fatalities and over 170 wounded.

 

Psychiatric drugs are typically prescribed to individuals with mental health problems to help them cope with stress or anxiety. Individuals might eventually end up developing a dependency on these drugs. Consequently, they start abusing the drugs, and drug addiction follows.

 

When the drug addiction becomes a real problem, withdrawing is usually the next logical step. However, a 2012 study published in Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics revealed that withdrawing from psychotropic drugs can lead to violent and aggressive behavior.

 

Video Games, Mental Illness, and Drug Abuse

Most school shooters usually have an underlying form of mental illness. Even though the specifics may vary among shooters, most of them, however; have been found to have had a troubling childhood. Often bullied or isolated, these individuals become loners who use video games as a coping mechanism. All while fantasizing on violent revenge.

Video games, on the other hand, have been found to increase the levels of aggression in the gamer while desensitizing them to violence. This results in reduced empathy which makes the person more likely to commit a shooting.

Your Kid’s Brain on Video Games

Over the last ten years, video games have steadily etched their way into one of the most preferred form of entertainment throughout the world as a result of the steady decrease in TV viewing habits. This is because video games are no longer limited to arcades or homes. Portable systems and mobile devices have made gaming a possibility no matter where you are. Nonetheless, consoles and computers remain widely popular gaming systems.

 

This ubiquitous nature of video games is the main cause of video gaming addiction in teens and children as they do not know when they should stop playing. Not surprisingly, parents are becoming increasingly concerned about this screen addiction. It is a major cause of worry when you notice that video games are the top priority in your child’s life. The child may start neglecting their hobbies, friends, sports, and schoolwork. Moreover, they may lash out at anyone who tries to limit their gaming.

 

The American Academy of Pediatrics has it that, on average, kids today spend about seven hours each day on some type of electronic device. Additionally, about 97% of kids aged between 12 and 17 play video games regularly.

 

Understandably, as a parent, you may start wondering whether your child has an actual addiction to video games. And if so, is their brain in danger? This article will take a closer look at video game addiction and how it can affect your child’s brain and life?

What is Video Game Addiction?

 

Gaming addiction refers to the compulsive and uncontrolled use of digital games, in a manner that results in problems in other areas of the gamer’s life. It is, therefore, considered a form of tech addiction or screen addiction. Video gaming addiction is an issue of increasing concern among parents as digital games become more popular and are increasingly being targeted at children. These include console games, computer games, cell phone games, and arcade games. Today, they are even embedded in social networking sites.

 

How Do Video Games Affect the Brain?

 

Most games are designed to trigger the sensory responses that humans use when they are exposed to danger. Whenever the brain feels threatened or senses danger, it kicks in our primitive survival mechanisms that work to protect us from harm. This is an instantaneous response that has been hardwired into our genes to ensure our survival. Nonetheless, a threat does not have to be real for this response to be triggered. It only takes the brain to perceive danger for the body to react.

 

Upon triggering this instinct, the nervous system and hormones work to jolt our state of arousal to enable faster reactions. As such, the body goes into a state of hyperarousal – commonly referred to as the fight-or-flight response. The issue, however, is that the feelings associated with this state are typically difficult to shake off even after the threat (real or perceived) is long gone.

 

The hyperarousal state is also referred to as ‘running from the tiger,’ since our ancestors literally had to protect themselves from predators by either fighting or running. Even though most humans today do not live in fear of predation, we still need this rapid stress response when we are in emergency situations or even the mild day-to-day stress reactions that help us to get things done. However, repeatedly going through this response when survival is not at stake does more harm than good in the long run.

As mentioned earlier, after a fight or flight stress response, the brain usually has a hard time regulating itself to a calm state. As such, when this response occurs regularly or too intensely, it can lead to a state of chronic stress. Stress is usually as a result of the mismatch between the survival response reactions and energy expenditure, as is typical with video games. When your body goes into that response, it builds up energy to help you through that moment. As such, this energy needs to be physically discharged so that the nervous system can re-regulate. When that energy is not discharged, the nervous system does not re-regulate effectively thus leading to chronic stress.

 

Once the body goes into a state of chronic stress, blood flow is directed away from the frontal lobe (the higher thinking part of the brain) and towards the deeper, primitive areas which are designed to help you survive adverse situations. The result is a functioning impairment.

 

Chronic stress sets in faster in children than in adults. This is because their nervous systems are still developing thus making those sequence of events to occur a lot faster in them. And when a child becomes chronically stressed, they soon begin to struggle.

 

And because the primary effect of chronic stress is felt on the frontal lobe, the child becomes mentally depleted. This leads to issues such as having trouble paying attention, suppressed impulses,an inability to manage emotions, difficulty following directions, frustration, and a hard time executing tasks. Moreover, these effects are compounded by the amount of screen-time that is spent playing these games. The body clock of a heavy gamer is usually distorted thus hindering deep sleep. Missing quality sleep regularly will result in mood, cognitive, and behavior issues.

 

How Gaming Addiction Compares to Other Addictions

 

An addiction to video games is similar to other addictions in terms of the amount of time and effort channeled into the activity, the emotional attachment involved, and the patterns of social difficulties displayed by the gamers.

 

As is the case with other addictions, video game addicts are preoccupied with gaming, thus disrupting their relationships, hobbies, and school. The younger a child begins to play video games, the more the likelihood that they will develop a dependence on video games.

Other Harmful Effects Associated With Video Games

 

In addition to addiction, the following are other harmful effects that have been linked to heavy video game use:

 

 An increased vulnerability to light-induced seizures, enhanced metabolic rate, and musculoskeletal disorders of the upper extremities.

 Reduced cooperative behavior during group settings or social interactions.

 An increase in aggressive thoughts and behaviors especially in children under the age of ten.

 

Research done on video game addicts reveals that, in general, they exhibit poorer mental health characterized by a decrease in cognitive abilities such as poor impulse control and ADHD symptoms. Moreover, individuals who are addicted to video games also tend to experience emotional difficulties, as well as being highly susceptible to anxiety and depression. They also report as feeling socially isolated, in addition to being more likely to have issues with internet pornography.

 

Parents need to learn the science behind how the time spent playing video games can overstimulate the nervous system, and how those effects manifest themselves, especially in their own child. By learning this information, parents will be better equipped to make strategic decisions regarding the role of video games in their children’s lives. It puts them in the driver’s seat rather than constantly being swayed by misleading headlines and cultural headlines.

Unfortunately, gaming addiction is a relatively new psychological problem, and as such, it can be difficult for parents to find experts who specialize in video game addiction. Nonetheless, help is available for parents looking to help their kids to overcome their tech addiction. Omega Recovery is a contemporary addiction treatment center run by experts with a breadth of knowledge across all areas of addiction. Are you looking to curb your child’s gaming addiction? Contact us today, and we will be glad to help.

Rehab Tune-Up, Is It Time?

Anyone who has ever been addicted to a substance knows that fighting that addiction is a long-term battle. Fortunately, most choose to get into a rehabilitation center and gain sobriety. However, things do not necessarily get easier. A common misconception is that once someone has gone through their addiction recovery program and completed their treatment, they have recovered. This is not the case as recovery is not a one-time accomplishment. It is an ongoing journey with more than its share of speed bumps. It is a fight that you might have to battle more than once to win it.

 

As such, during the days, months, or even years after your treatment, one is still susceptible to slipping, relapsing, or falling back into their old ways. In fact, estimates show that over 40 percent of recovering addicts relapse. The unfortunate thing about relapsing, however, is that if the individual does not take immediate measures to curb it, they can quickly spiral down back the rabbit hole they had fought so desperately to escape.

 

Therefore, it is imperative that one notices these signs early so they can enroll for a rehab tune-up program to prevent them from falling back to addiction.

This article will discuss what a rehab tune-up is, how it helps curb a relapse, and how to tell when you or a loved one need a tune-up.

 

What is a Rehab Tune-up?

 

During your recovery after battling addiction, life may throw you curveballs or situations which make you reach for the drug or substance that you have worked so hard to fight off. In these moments, you might either slip and use, or feel a very strong urge to use.

 

If you do not take any preventive measures, you will risk relapsing. In a bid to prevent this from happening, drug rehab facilities often have tune-up programs that help you through those trying moments to ensure that your recovery is not compromised.

 

How to Know You Need a Rehab Tune-up

 

  1. You No Longer Go To Meetings, Therapy, Or Aftercare

 

Going to group therapies and meetings are one of the best ways of staying open about your experiences during recovery. It also allows you to be accountable. And like it was mentioned earlier, recovery is an ongoing learning lesson with no end. However, it offers you opportunities for growth. Therefore, if you find yourself or a loved one avoiding these environments that foster growth, it means that you are losing touch with what it means to be active in recovery, and are on the verge of resorting to old ways.

 

  1. Changes in Feelings and Attitudes

 

Relapsing does not always revolve around slipping and using. It can also be about the emotions you feel that might lead you back to the addiction. After completing your rehab program and going back into the world, unhealthy thoughts are bound to cross your mind.

 

For instance, a recovering alcohol addict might start thinking, “One beer for the night cannot be that bad. It is the weekend, after all.”

 

If you catch yourself thinking along those lines, take a step back and evaluate how far you have come. Think about the sacrifices, time, and money that your loved ones spent putting you through the program so you could get better. Think about the disappointment you will cause to yourself and your family if you were to relapse.

 

If the urges are still too strong despite being aware of the implications of relapsing, you need to visit a rehab tune up.

 

  1. Lying

 

Do you find yourself constantly making excuses for your behaviors? Are you avoiding the truth about your negative emotions and feelings? You always know when you are not honest about how you really feel, and this is a red flag. If you feel this way, seeking professional help will help you deal with those emotions.

 

  1. Depression

 

While everyday ups and downs are normal, a prolonged period of sadness is risky towards effective recovery. A lack of interest, motivation, concentration, and sleep are the most common signs of depression. If you notice these signs, do not sit on them as they will likely make you reach for the substance you have been avoiding. Contact the professionals.

 

  1. Overconfidence

 

After completing their rehab program, some addicts might feel that they can be in situations where drugs are present because they have been cured. If you feel this way, it means that you do not completely understand what the recovery process entails as putting yourself in such a situation is likely to trigger a relapse.

 

  1. Tunnel Vision

 

Do you find yourself directing all your attention to one area of your life? Are you neglecting other significant aspects of your life such as family and friends? This is a clear warning sign that you are on the verge of relapse. Taking some time in a rehab tune-up will help you realign your priorities.

 

  1. Irritation

 

Unfortunately, some recovering addicts might feel like abandoning their bad habits is a sacrifice, and that this gives them the right to be angry or demanding all the time. If you find yourself feeling like this constantly, it is imperative that you visit a recovery center.

Benefits of Rehab Tune Ups

 

  1. Breaking the Cycle

 

Someone on the verge of relapse is usually around settings or factors that encourage them to return to their habits. By pulling them away from these situations and allowing them to think objectively about everything that surrounds them, rehab tune-ups set the individual back on track.

 

  1. Dig Into Underlying Issues

 

At times, the individual might not know what is triggering them to attempt the substance again. They might be depressed without even knowing it. A rehab tune-up has resources that can help the individual to dig into those underlying issues while assisting them to build coping skills, so they do not have to use the drug or substance as a coping mechanism.

 

  1. Encouraging Newly Adopted Habits

 

Addicts are typically people with poor discipline and self-care habits. During the rehabilitation process, they are taught new constructive habits that will help them become better individuals. However, maintaining these habits or practices can be hard once they are out of the rehab center.

 

This makes them vulnerable to falling back to old habits. The benefit of going to a rehab tune-up, therefore, is that it reminds the individual of the importance of maintaining healthy habits in helping combat the compulsive nature of addictions.

 

A rehab tune up is not a one-off thing. Rather, it is something that a recovering addict might need more than once. Tune-ups are not the same as rehabilitation programs. This is because instead of treating the individual, a tune-up helps the person to stay on top of their recovery program. And because one cannot always be strong enough to resist temptations, a tune-up offers you solace and support when you are at your most vulnerable.

Are you a recovering addict and need some help staying on course? Serving the residents of Maui and its environs, Maui Recovery is the premier addiction recovery center in Hawaii. While our primary goal is to set addicts back on the right path, we also have programs geared towards helping recovering addicts to stay on top of their recovery. For people who do not have a full 30 days for rehab, we have customized 1 week rehab and 2 week rehab programs to address your addiction and its underlying issues. The 1 week rehab and 2 week rehab programs also take care of individuals looking to take a time-out so they can connect with their true self. Do you feel this would be beneficial for you? Feel free to contact us for further information.

Gaming disorder is an addiction

Okaz newspaper

The World Health Organization recently classified “gaming disorder” as addictive behavior. Indeed, the dangerous addiction to games on the Internet is similar to the addiction to alcohol and drugs. This is a serious matter because there are adults and children who are addicted to these computer and video games on a daily basis.

The addicted person is isolated socially and suffers from mood swings, limited imagination and an extreme focus on achievement in these games, which is measured by passing from one game level to another. Addicts totally isolate themselves from real-life events.

Gaming disorder was not classified as a disease in 2013 because of incomplete evidence. This year it was classified as a disease because the evidence is now completed. There is evidence of people in South Korea and the United States who bring their lives to a temporary halt because of these games.

The overwhelming majority of those suffering from gaming disorder are students at the middle and high school level. While these addicts are teenagers, it has been reported that there is an increase of people in their 30s and 40s who are addicted to Internet games.

It is not necessary for a person to suffer from gaming disorder for a long time to be classified as a sick person.

People are classified as suffering from gaming disorder when they are facing problems with relationships and at work because of their excessive involvement with games. For example, such people cannot control the amount of time that they play and to them, gaming is a priority in their daily life.

Such people will neglect their work and study.

If these symptoms continue for more than a year, then they can be classified as suffering from gaming disorder and they need help.

 

Video Gaming Addiction

Addiction is a term that most people associate with drugs, alcohol, and junk foods. Getting addicted to something, especially if it is unhealthy can be detrimental to your mental and physical development. People not only get addicted to substances and drugs but also video games. Let us discuss in detail what video game addiction is, its causes, effects and how to help anybody trapped in their world of video game addiction.

What is Video Gaming Addiction?

Video gaming addiction is the inability to control oneself from playing video games. According to a study , 1.4 percent of gamers are addicted to playing video games.

In recent times, many video game companies release games on a yearly basis. Each version of an upgraded game promises players better graphics and increased in-game control among a host of other upgrades. Gamers, especially on the online platform, feel immersed into the virtual world and forget what is happening in the real world. The more you play, the more intriguing the gameplay becomes. Meeting fellow players online and making friends with them from the comfort of a seat in your bedroom accelerates the process of addiction. This makes it difficult to withdraw from gaming.

According to Game Quitters, a website that helps parents fight their children’s video game addiction, some of the most addictive video games include first-person player games such as Fortnite, Strike Team, Bullet Force, etc. A study done by a group of researchers from the Oxford university states that 2-3 percent of gamers are heavily addicted and display diagnosable symptoms associated with gaming.

The Proof of the Danger?

In some cases, they can be debilitating addictions and clinical disorders that have ruined peoples lives. A whole generation of “Failure to Launch” Millenials have seen their schooling, job prospects and/or interpersonal relationships suffer–or even destroyed–as a result of their screen or technology addiction.Now there is a dedicated specialized program at Omega Recovery to effectively treat this issue.

Dr. Kardaras, our Co-CEO and Chief Clinical Officer, is considered one of the world’s leading experts on digital addiction (social media, video games, smart phones, etc.) and its treatment. He is the author of “Glow Kids” (St. Martin’s Press, 2016), the seminal book on the clinical, neurological and sociological aspects of digital/technology addiction and, over the past 10 years, he has clinically worked with hundreds of young people struggling with this issue. And now he has bought his years of expertise and developed the best evidence-based treatment protocols at Maui Recovery to address and treat the addiction of this millenium: technology addiction.

What causes video game addictions?

One factor stands out when it comes to video game addiction: video games are designed to be addictive. What other way is better than to keep players coming back for more? Video game addiction is also caused by the need to clear a mission and move to the next level. For example, some video game designers have their games structured in such a way that the gamer misses to proceed to the next level by a slim chance. As such, gamers have to repeat the mission until they are successful. Missions are usually harder as you proceed with the game, consequently resulting in addiction.

Video games become addictive by satisfying a gamer’s need to make social connections. Online video games offer gamers an opportunity to network and make friends with other players on the same platform. Players who lack social skills in the real world will be quick to jump into the virtual world and make friends with whom they share the same interests.

Other video games offer in-game rewards, which are seductive pursuits for some gamers. More rewards translate to more power, respect and ultimately ranking in the overall standing of the games table.

Symptoms of video game addiction

Research is still underway to disclose real symptoms of video games addiction. However,

studies published in the American Online Journal of Psychiatry indicates that there are more than five symptoms that can be used to identify an addicted video gamer.

  1. Isolation

Many video game addicts will be quick to isolate themselves from social gatherings or events in order to play their favorite video game. They will come up with excuses to help them isolate themselves and play their favorite game.

  1. Dysregulated gaming

Dysregulated gaming leads to significant distress, which is the first symptom of video gaming disorder. Online video game players will concentrate more on their gaming and procrastinate other duties. They are always preoccupied with the game they are playing or a new game that has just been released.

  1. Observable shifts in interests.

Another way to tell if somebody is addicted to video games is by observing a shift in their interests. For example, if someone who would be happy to attend family functions prefers to play video games during such occasions, it is a clear indicator that they are getting addicted.

  1. Lying

Most addicted gamers have been caught playing their favorite game after giving an excuse that they were preoccupied with some other different activity. Moreover, if all somebody can talk about is gaming and how good they are at a given game, it might point out to some significant extent that they are addicted.

     5. Treatment and cure from video game addiction        

Video game addiction always causes anhedonia, which is the loss of interest in things that excited or made someone pursue rewards. For an addicted gamer to find cure and treatment, they should:

Understand why they are playing a game.

Experts advise that to get out of video game addiction, a gamer should understand why they are playing the game in the first place. Most people play games to escape reality. As a result, gamers should set aside a limited amount of time to play video games. For instance, say, three to four hours of video games during weekends will go a long way in curbing addiction problems.

Find alternative hobbies

A gamer can find alternative hobbies and focus more of their energies indulging in them. Different hobbies take away the focus on video games and can allow someone to concentrate more on other things.

Cognitive behavior approach

Cognitive behavior approach is another way to treat video game addiction. Experts advise that you can overcome addiction by staying away from your playing station. Delve into the real world by driving a real car or attending social events that will cover up most of the time you use for playing video games.

Finding Help

The World Health Organization recognizes addiction as a condition in its international classification of diseases. And with numbers increasing, it is imperative that we address this societal problem. It is important for gaming addicts to speak to a professional if they are unable to overcome it by themselves. However, getting out of video game addiction narrows down to the addict and the amount of effort they are willing to put in recovery.

At Maui Recovery we’ve had success with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) in helping the addicted gamer find more adaptive ways of managing moods, feelings and thoughts that may trigger impulses to game. Counseling supplemented with a good 12 Step program in a structured sober living environment is ideal to help overcome the addiction and return to society.

Animal Assisted Therapy

Recovery from drug or alcohol addiction is a big step towards reclaiming your life. However, given that addiction is a highly individualized disease, treatment may take several forms depending on your case. During the recovery process, support systems are vital in helping the addict not to relapse into the addiction. One of the popular support approaches is dog-assisted therapy. This therapy involves giving those healing from addiction a dog to aid them during the recovery process. The dog offers the patients a connection to another living being. This is something that most patients lack.  Maui Humane Society is a great place to find a new best friend.

 

Animal-assisted therapy comes with the following benefits:

 

Animals are compassionate and love you.

Dogs are very good at showing compassion to their owners especially when the owners are low in spirits. A recovering addict will have their moments of low spirits and may lack someone that can give you that touch of assurance. A pet can play this role perfectly. It can curl, perch on your shoulder or lie beside you. It reassures you that everything is okay and will be fine. Dogs are great partners who never get bored with you and can be with you wherever you go or are doing. Given that you may regularly suffer from these moments of loneliness especially if you lack family support, getting a pet to be on your side is a noble idea.

Helps return your mind to the normal routine

Drug addiction alters your normal habits and makes you forget your responsibility. A significant step towards recovery is getting back to your normal routine. For you to form new habits, you need responsibilities that need to be fulfilled on a daily basis.

 

One of these activities is to take care of a dog. If you have a dog that needs to be fed, a dog that needs to be walked and you are most likely going to push yourself to wake up and get going. This daily commitment eventually turns into a routine. With the basic routine in place, you can add in other routines such as cooking, bathing and so forth. With time, you are able to get your normal life back.

Unlike other activities that you may postpone, a task around a pet cannot be postponed. When struggling to complete the task, you will end up completing other tasks in the process.

 

Gives you a sense of purpose

Most people are engulfed into a sense of hopelessness when they cannot control their drug or alcohol habit. Over time the hopelessness leads to frustration and more drug use. Unfortunately, you may feel the same when trying to get out of addiction. You may be struggling so much to keep within the recovery boundaries especially if are on extended care at home or rehab center.

 

Pets can give you a sense of hope, self-worth, and direction. You may be having a hard time getting on with the family members or connecting with friends who may affect your social life as you feel unwanted. However, your pet depends on you for grooming, food, and shelter. It gives you a reason to wake up each morning and do something for it. This reason is what helps you to rebuild your self-worth and a sense of purpose. In the long run, it enables you to regain the confidence of the people around you that you can take care of more than just yourself.

Helps the Whole Family Recover

 

Dogs help families take time out for play, it’s fun to chase your dog around the yard, go for walks, play fetch, learn new tricks, etc. Dogs provide loyalty, companionship and love. Studies show that owning a dor reduce stress and lowers cholesterol, and can add years to your life. See this article at WebMD for a list of benefits. Dogs greatly enrich the lives and help with recovery for both individuals and families.

 

Helps in socialization

One of the things that drug abuse kills off is the connection between you and the people around you. Drugs may have ruined relationships through withdrawal, risky behavior or unpredictable temperament. It is always a tough task to learn to socialize again when you get sober again. In fact, one of the aftercare objectives is to get you to become integrated into society and enable you to create friendships with people around you.

Dogs can act as middle persons in your journey to socializing again. You can walk the dog to a pet park and engage in some talk with other dog owners. Friendship with other pets helps you to regain the ability to trust others and learn new ways to handle relationships.

Pets are also known to ease social pressures that your friends and companions feel when they visit you. Friends may not have a lot to share. However, on meeting a pet at home he or she can start a small chat around the dog. Soon, the ice is broken, and other topics come into the foreground.

 

Keeps you active

As you recover, you need to keep your energy levels up by keeping yourself busy. Unfortunately, you are likely to end up feeling worn-out. A dog can come in to keep you motivated. Animals are exercise ready and awesome exercise companions. You may put off your next activity if you feel like not doing it. However, you cannot keep postponing your dog care activities such a dog walking, playing with the pet, and grooming. You will be forced to compose yourself and do what you are required to do. This motivation slowly turns seemingly tough or boring activities into routine activities. In addition, remaining active improves the rate of recovery and lowers the risk of relapse.

Conclusion

If you are in Maui, sober living is possible. Adopt a pet at the Maui Humane Society, having a pet near you is one of the most effective ways of speeding up recovery. Visit the pets center today and let your new friend walk with you to a drug-free life.

 

Tech Addiction

Are You a Tech Addict? Here are Signs You Must Look Out For

Just this year, online divorce website Divorce Online cited addiction to the video game ‘Fortnite: Battle Royale’ as responsible for at least 200 divorce petitions since January that were filed through their site – a whopping 5% of the petitions the company received. This is startling evidence of the adverse impacts of this new form of addiction.

 

If you feel that your impulse to grab the phone when you do not really need to, or can no longer resist spending nights gaming, you may be suffering from tech addiction. Simply put, you may have a disorder that makes you lose impulse control when it comes to technology. This disorder may also be referred to as digital addiction.

 

How technology addiction works

 

Smartphones have been integrated so deeply in people’s everyday lives that the thought of living without a device is, for many, unimaginable. These days the addiction can start at a very young age. According to Dr Nicholas Kardaras, “Current clinical research correlates screen tech with disorders like ADHD, addiction, anxiety, depression, increased aggression, and even psychosis. Most shocking of all, recent brain imaging studies conclusively show that excessive screen exposure can neurologically damage a young person’s developing brain in the same way that drug addiction can.”

Tech addictions have crept up on society, and the effects are so damaging that it will take a lot of effort to reverse these impacts. The potential to abuse tech devices is high. The internet offers a new dimension to access content, game non-stop, network with people, and a host of other things. Social media has become the nursery on which new addicts are born. The compulsion to like, comment, share, and tag selfies can drive people to develop attentional disorders.

 

Whenever the device vibrates because of a new notification or when your tweet gets more likes than you expected, dopamine, the brain’s neurochemical reward, is released. An itch is scratched. This can happen when merely thinking about what you really look forward to. The anticipation grows stronger over time until you can no longer stop playing, chatting, swiping, or doing whatever you do with your device, no matter how much you want to.

 

Symptoms of technology addiction

 

There are different types of technology addictions such as gaming addiction, gambling, texting, sexting, porn, and others. However, they all have similar symptoms because it is basically the same problem brought on by different pleasure preferences. Here are the most critical symptoms to look out for if you use technology on a daily basis.

  • If you cannot stop yourself from watching one more episode or playing one more game, then you may be suffering from video gaming addiction or screen addiction.

 

  • You feel depressed. This is particularly common among smartphone addicts. If you get to a point where you sleep with your phone next to you it is a symptom you may be addicted.

 

  • Like any other addiction, tech addiction causes the sufferers to lie to everyone including themselves. Dishonesty, often accompanied by guilt and anxiety, is a clear giveaway.

 

  • You feel euphoric when you use the device you are addicted to. Addicts to the Fortnite game, in particular, have attributed their problems to the satisfying feeling of euphoria when playing the 100-player multiplayer ‘Battle Royale’.

 

  • You cannot keep schedules or prioritize. You lose the sense of time but can always make up defensive explanations.

 

  • Procrastination and boredom with routine tasks.

 

  • Insomnia and dry eyes for video gaming addiction.

 

  • Lack of focus.

 

The people who are most susceptible to addiction are online shoppers and gamblers, gamers, texters, social media users, and video streamers.

 

Effects of addiction to technology

 

People suffering from addiction to technology could lose a lot in life. This is because the condition affects their work lives, personal and professional relationships, finances, and health. They often spend a lot of time in solitude and distrust stands out in the way they interact with people. As a result, the addicts may end up living alternate personas online to mask their online behaviors and minimize the guilt they feel.

 

The virtual relationships that most sufferers form online are often the primary cause of life dissatisfaction and emotional problems disrupting young children’s lives. The emotional impact of exposure to too much information has been documented to be noticeably destructive to their behavioral and empathy development.

 

Health problems including nervous system, dysregulated sleep and brain development delays among children. In addition, attentional problems can be traced to early exposure and addiction to technology. Screen addiction and exposure to blue light is also known to cause serious eye problems.

 

Overcoming technology addiction

 

The first step in freeing yourself from addiction to tech is acknowledging that it is a problem and resolving to fight it. An addiction is difficult to diagnose because most people do not even know they suffer from it. Health experts agree that addiction to technology and entertainment is today’s equivalent of a heroin addiction. If you have trouble saying no to a game, device, or online interaction, admitting it is the biggest step you will have taken towards freeing yourself from dependence on it.

 

The next step is to set goals to work towards the recovery journey. Write down when you can use the smartphone or when to sit in front of the computer and try to stick to it. You have the option to wean yourself off as you modify your behavior and regain impulse control or you can stop cold turkey. The former is effective in managing internet addiction while the latter works best for gaming addiction.

 

Replace your bad tech habits with healthier ones. Used to streaming shows every night after dinner? How about eating out and getting a drink with friends instead? Craving likes on Instagram? Uninstall the app instead and never have to worry about which filter to use when posting a picture on social media to get likes.

 

Perhaps the most rewarding change you can make in your life to solve problems caused by addiction to gadgets is mending fences with the people around you. Make a commitment to curb the addiction and spend more quality time with the people who care about you. This will speed up the recovery process while restoring your relationships with real value.

 

If you feel the degree of your addiction is beyond your capacity to overcome, consider talking to a professional for help. There is help available at Omega Recovery in downtown Austin, TX and Maui Recovery. Technology is supposed to work for you; if you have gotten to a point where it is ruining your chances of a good life, it’s time to take action.

 

Conclusion

 

Our culture demands that we rely on technology in our everyday life. However, you must take steps to ensure that you are not trapped in a spiral of addiction. If you find that you have no control over your use of gadgets, it’s time to seek help.

The Dual Diagnosis Challenge

Dual diagnosis is a condition where a person is diagnosed with both substance addiction and a serious mental health problem such as an anxiety disorder, depression, or a bipolar disorder. It also goes by the names co-morbid disorders, co-occurring disorders, and co-existing disorders. They all refer to the same issue. When an individual has a co-occurring disorder, they have to simultaneously deal with both problems which makes their road to sober living and mental health much more difficult.

 

However, having a co-occurring disorder does not mean making a full recovery is impossible. The right help can help make a sober, steady life a reality. Many recovery programs have trained personnel who deal with both types of issues regularly. As such, it is imperative that you ask the treatment center you are seeking for your loved one whether they have expertise and experience in treating both addiction and mental health issues. They must provide assurance that they understand mental health concerns and how to help an individual recover from those as they treat the addiction problem. Not all treatment centers have the expertise and equipment to handle such situations. Failure to treat both issues concurrently almost always leads in one or both of the issues worsening.

 

Why Dual-Diagnosis is Difficult to Treat

 

When the individual increases their substance abuse, managing their mental problem becomes a lot more difficult. The reverse is also true. Moreover, having both mental health and addiction issues makes both problems more difficult to diagnose, as the behaviors and symptoms associated with each disorder will often complicate or mask the symptoms of the other.

 

As such it takes trained and dedicated specialists to untangle the disorders. Determining which condition came first is not as important as ensuring that both are resolved using appropriate treatment and care.

 

Nevertheless, denial is a common factor in both mental health and addiction problems. An addict often has a hard time accepting that their alcoholism or drug addiction is having negative effects on them and their loved ones. The stress of trying to mask the effects of their substance use causes them to feel ashamed and anxious. Moreover, the effects of the substances they are abusing can cause them to be depressed, have mood swings, panic attacks, and other symptoms that will only exacerbate the mental problem.

 

The same also holds true for individuals who have mental health problems. A lot of people find their symptoms to be shameful or as weakness. As such, they may either choose to ignore them and hope that they will go away, or turn to drugs and alcohol in an attempt to find relief. After depending on these substances to cure their frustrations, it eventually results in alcoholism and drug addiction, thus creating the co-occurring disorder.

 

Thus, even though it is hard to admit that they have these problems, it is the most critical step towards resolving their conditions.

 

Often, individuals suffering from either mental health issues or addiction problems find that other people within their families suffered or suffer from the same issue. It, therefore, seems to be a link between these issues and family ties. However, the exact role that genetics play in the development of these conditions has not been figured out yet. Nonetheless, patients of co-occurring disorders need professional help if they are ever going to overcome these problems and lead a healthy life.

 

Common Mental Health Disorders Linked to Dual Diagnoses

 

Substance addiction does not always lead to mental health issues, nor do mental conditions lead to addiction. However, they often become co-current because people turn to drugs and alcohol to alleviate their symptoms. Thus, substance abuse does increase an individual’s susceptibility to mental health problems.

 

Nevertheless, the following are the most common mental health disorders in Dual-Diagnoses:

 

 Depression.

 Anxiety.

 Bipolar Disorder.

 Schizophrenia.

 Attention Deficit Disorders.

 Personality Disorders.

 Post-traumatic Stress Disorder.

 

It is important to note that even the prescription medication for mental illnesses such as antidepressants can also cause more problems.

 

How Many People are affected by Dual-Diagnoses

 

The Journal of the American Medical Association  reports that around 50 percent of all people diagnosed with serious mental health issues also struggle with substance abuse. Moreover, about 37% of alcoholics and 53% of drug addicts have at least one severe mental illness. Additionally, the Journal of Addiction Medicine reveals that nearly 60 percent of individuals with bipolar disorder also suffer from some form of addiction. About 44 million Americans have been diagnosed with some type of mental condition.

 

However, the number of people suffering from mental illnesses but have not sought help remains unknown. Nevertheless, estimates indicate that about 7 million US adults are coping with both mental health conditions and addiction, or have a dual-diagnoses. Sadly, however, it is estimated that only about 16% of individuals with dual-diagnoses ever seek treatment.

 

Treating Dual Diagnosis

 

The past three decades have witnessed a great deal of change on how co-occurring disorders are treated. Up until the mid-90s, people who were suffering from both addictions and mental illnesses were often denied access to treatment for their mental health issues until they were sober. This approach was heavily flawed as substance abuse is one of the major contributors towards mental disorders. As such, a lot of individuals with dual diagnoses were denied the treatment they required.

 

Today, however, treatment is focused on addressing addiction and mental health problems concurrently. It is a growing field of therapy that is more comprehensive and effective at ensuring that individuals suffering from both conditions make a successful recovery. Dual diagnoses treatment utilizes evidence-based programs such as cognitive-behavioral therapy, counseling, motivation enhancement therapy, in addition to 12-step programs.

Counseling, in particular, is essential during this treatment as it helps patients learn how to cope with their mental health issues without relying on alcohol or drugs to manage their symptoms. They are taught that these substances actually aggravate their problems. As such, these patients need to be seen regularly by a psychiatrist.

 

Moreover, these individuals are also taught about medication compliance, and the importance of taking their medication as prescribed. Individualized treatment plans and cognitive therapy programs are essential towards addressing the needs of each patient to further enhance the success of the program.

 

Co-occurring disorders require a minimum of a 30-day inpatient program in addition to an outpatient aftercare treatment to realize success. However, the best outcome is usually realized when the patient stays in the inpatient treatment for an extended period. Recovering from dual-diagnoses is not easy, it needs courage and commitment from the patient. This is because it can take months or years to change their maladaptive habits and behaviors. Treatment is essential in helping teach them that basics of sober living, decision making, and coping skills. However, they need to make long-term commitments so that the treatment can be successful.

 

Dual diagnosis is a condition where substance addiction and a mental health condition manifest themselves at the same time on an individual. For a long time, this condition was not handled appropriately, and patients rarely made a successful recovery. However, advancements in healthcare have seen to newer and more efficient techniques of dealing with the disorder. No one promises that recovering will be easy, but in the right hands, your loved one should get their life back on track.

 

Maui Recovery Hawaii

Learn About Our Programs

Drug and Alcohol Rehab Recovery Steps

Drug Rehab Recovery Steps

Drug rehab is a vital part of the recovery process an addiction patient endures before he or she can permanently wave goodbye to the life-damaging habit. It is a component that cannot be omitted because it is basically responsible for salvaging a patient’s dire health situation and reconfiguring the individual’s thought process in order to brew self-confidence.

While drug rehab is definitely key to improving the wellbeing of an addict, the first true step to Hawaii recovery from addiction is the admission of an addiction problem and the willingness to seek help. A patient that is admitted to a rehab center must be willing and committed to receiving treatment; failure to exhibit such positive resolve is bound to waste the precious time of all parties involved in the procedure.

The recovery process in rehab centers can indeed be very thorough and overwhelming; however, the steps taken by the experienced professionals running these facilities are tried, tested, and endorsed. While these steps are often modified to fit the peculiarity of each addiction patient, they are the general guidelines that are adhered to during the execution of therapeutic procedures within the confines of a rehab facility.

drug rehab recovery

hawaii drug and alcohol treatment

Steps Used in Drug Rehab

 

Assessment

This is an important step that must be taken by any reputable rehab facility in Hawaii because of the role it plays in creating a treatment plan. It is basically obscene to commence drug addiction therapy without assessing the patient to determine the severity of the addiction or the possible existence of an underlying health issue.

Proper assessment of the addiction patient helps guide the rehab personnel through the process of generating a treatment plan and schedule, which ensures that the therapeutic process is both effortless and effective.

An assessment helps determine the concentration of the illicit drug in the patient’s bloodstream, which is a must-have information for the rehab personnel. It also determines the treatment option that will be suitable for the patient with rehab programs like inpatient therapy and outpatient therapy available for implementation.

hawaii sober living

Hawaii Sober Living

Detoxification

This is the clinical aspect of rehab treatment that involves the administering of therapeutic drugs for the purpose of removing the harmful addictive compounds from the patient’s bloodstream. Detoxification is not just an integral component of a rehab program, it is the procedure that kick-starts a patient’s recovery.

The removal of these harmful compounds from the patient’s body isn’t only carried out to restore the individual’s body to an healthy state, it is also performed to ensure that all intrinsic addiction triggers lodged in the system of the patient are promptly eliminated. It is well known that most patients almost immediately experience remarkable improvement of their health after completing the detoxification process and many describe the feeling as remarkably exhilarating.

The detoxification process may, however, at times trigger certain unpleasant side effects that can be excruciating for the patient. While these side effects are most often times temporary, they can easily be suppressed by the administering of medication.

 

Mental and Psychological Therapy

This procedure usually takes place all through the duration of a rehab program in Hawaii and its efficacy as a viable addiction treatment procedure has been comprehensively proven. This vital step of drug rehab recovery is used to perform diagnostic, therapeutic, and preventive actions on the addiction patient, hence, making it a key component of all rehab programs.

It entails the mental and psychological assessment of a patient in order to highlight the factors responsible for the addiction.  Discovering the psychological source of an addiction problem goes a long way in aiding its resolution, and it also leads to a long-term or permanent fix of the problem.

hawaii drug rehab and recovery

Counseling and Group Therapy

This is usually carried out after the completion of the detoxification process and can be run side by side with mental and psychological therapy. It involves the two highly effective social strategies that are applied in order to strengthen the character and emotional resilience of the patient.

When patients share their thoughts with qualified counselors or with recovering addicts, it builds up their emotional strength and improves their communication skills, which are both tools that will definitely come in handy after the rehab process. By undertaking this vital step, a recovering drug addict is strengthened with all the emotional artillery he or she needs to survive in the society once the rehab program ends.

Post-Rehab Recovery Steps

After completing the rigorous rehab program, the patient can seek respite away from the pressure in the outside world by temporarily residing in an extended living sober home until he or she has the mental and emotional strength to withstand life’s day to day challenges.

But perhaps the most important step that must be taken by the patient to truly defeat the terrible vice of drug addiction is the enjoyment of life without indulgence in any illicit substance.

Maui Recovery is here to help you with your drug and alcohol addiction treatment and recovery steps. 

 

 

 

 

Drug Addiction Treatment and Recovery in Hawaii

Drug Addiction Treatment in Hawaii

Known for its beautiful, lush setting and rejuvenating, laid-back atmosphere, Hawaii has long since been one of the most coveted vacation destinations in the world. What many fail to realize, however, is the serious threat that drug addiction and alcoholism is posing to hundreds of native inhabitants.

Over the course of the past several decades, the state has been ravaged by innumerable cases of methamphetamine dependency. While meth poses the greatest drug-related threat to Hawaii residents by far, numerous other illicit substances have been wreaking havoc as well. Cocaine abuse continues to claim the lives of Hawaiian men and women, and the national opiate epidemic that the continental US has been battling for several years is beginning to make its way to the major islands. Take a look at the history of drug addiction in Hawaii as well as the current state of affairs, and know that if you or someone you love is battling a substance dependency of any kind, help is available – and you are not alone.

drug addiction

Hawaii and Drug Addiction

The Hawaiian Islands are inhabited by somewhere around 1.2 million people, and accommodate the largest ethnic variety of any of the United States. More than 7 million tourists visit the Islands on an annual basis, most flying into the Honolulu National Airport in Oahu from the mainland, Asia, and Canada. Though this is the largest airport in the state, there are airfields and airports on 6 of the 8 major islands. Why is the number of Hawaiian airports so significant? The majority of illicit substances currently in circulation throughout the state were either brought into territory by aircraft passengers, or shipped via the US Postal Service or other air-oriented shipping companies.

The state itself is made up of eight major islands as well as a 1,500-mile chain of small inlets. In total, the state covers upwards of 6,420 miles in the North Pacific Central Ocean. The Honolulu District Office is a part of the Los Angeles Field Division, though it is located roughly 2,500 miles from the remainder of the country. The Area of Responsibility (or AOR) that the Honolulu District Office covers includes Hawaii, Guam, American Samoa, Saipan, and The Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.  

Methamphetamine in Hawaii

Hawaii has been the capital of methamphetamine use throughout the country since the mid 1980s, and has been responsible for more cases of addiction throughout the state than any other drugs combined. Most of the meth throughout the region was initially transported from Mexico or California, and the NDIC has since labeled Hawaii as a High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area. It was recently estimated that somewhere over 120,000 inhabitants currently use methamphetamine, and residents of all social standings and demographics have been majorly impacted.

Cocaine and Other Drugs

Methamphetamine is widely used – but far from socially acceptable. As in many other regions of the United States, snorting a line or two of high-quality cocaine at a classy get-together is exceedingly less taboo than lighting up the old meth pipe. Unfortunately, casual cocaine use may rapidly turn to dependency. Cocaine is currently ranked as Hawaii’s third most significant drug threat, closely following marijuana. Powdered cocaine is easily accessible throughout most of the major Hawaiian Islands, and it remains relatively inexpensive. In Maui specifically, cocaine distribution is predominantly controlled by Mexican organizations. These organizations also distribute black tar heroin throughout the west side of the island. While heroin is not nearly as popular as meth, the national heroin epidemic has influenced the rates of use throughout the state to a certain degree, and opiate abuse is on the rise.

addiction treatment

Addiction Treatment is Available


Despite the steadily increasing demand for adequate treatment in Hawaii, the amount of professional and affordable drug rehab centers still remains somewhat low. We at Maui Recovery believe that inpatient drug treatment in Hawaii should be accessible to all those who seek it. Our specific program of recovery is available to all men and women who are suffering from substance dependency issues and actively seeking a better way of life. We incorporate Hawaiian cultural principles with proven therapeutic and holistic techniques, providing each of our clients with a comprehensive and personalized treatment experience. For more information, call 800-919-2066 today.

Adventure Therapy at Maui Recovery

Drug Rehab in Hawaii

Group therapy has long since been employed by innumerable rehab facilities throughout the country as an effective form of psychotherapy. Group therapy helps to facilitate healthy communication skills, while allowing patients to relate to one another on a deep and emotionally intimate level. In the realm of addiction treatment, group therapy sessions help addicts to understand that they are not alone, and that developing a healthy and encouraging support system is crucial to the maintenance of long-term recovery.

Adventure therapy first became prominent in the early 1960s. The method of therapeutic healing draws influence from many psychological theories, though the predominant underlying philosophy is directly related to experiential education. Since its early development, adventure therapy has proven to increase self-esteem, self-helping behavior, trust in others, self-awareness, and improve a variety of other areas of emotional, social, and cognitive functioning.

The History of Adventure Therapy

Adventure and exploration has been a part of the healing process in many cultures for hundreds (if not thousands) of years. An archaic form of adventure therapy was utilized by Native Americans, and has proven to be quite prominent in the healing process present in both Jewish and Christian traditions. A form of therapy called “Tent Therapy” first emerged in the 1900s, and was studied closely for upwards of 20 years until it fell to the wayside. In this early form of adventure therapy, psychiatric patients were moved into tents on the hospital lawns. Many patients showed improvement during their stay in the tents, which prompted great interest amongst psychologists, psychiatrists, and other professionals in the medical field. Similar studies arose over the course of the next several decades, but the one that stuck was a camping program designed to help troubled adolescents and young adults. Currently known as “wilderness programs”, these adventure-based therapeutic retreats still help addicts, alcoholics, former convicts, and victims of abuse overcome self-imposed hurdles and build both self-esteem and self-confidence.

Our Program of Adventure Therapy

At Maui Recovery, we look to some of these therapeutic methods for inspiration, incorporating beneficial elements of adventure therapy into our own program of addiction recovery. A combination of Hawaiian culture, proven therapeutic practices, and the beautiful, lush scenery of the island make for a comprehensive and fulfilling journey of healing quite unlike any other. One of Maui’s greatest assets is the constant availability of outdoor resources. We take our clients on numerous excursions, exposing them to the medicinal properties of nature while instilling in them the self-assurance and belief of capability that years of substance abuse inevitably ripped away.

From hiking the many waterfall-lined mountains to swimming with sea turtles, we incorporate adventure therapy in a way that benefits our clients long-term, setting a solid foundation for lasting and meaningful sobriety. For more information on our program of adventure therapy, please give is a call toll-free at 800-919-2066. We look forward to speaking with you soon!

8 Ways to Have Sober Fun in Maui

Sober Living and Activities in Hawaii

Outdoor activities are a major cornerstone of our overall program at Maui Recovery – we believe that one of the main reasons we get sober is so that we can enjoy and appreciate life to the fullest! From hiking and kayaking to whale watching and stand-up paddle boarding, we incorporate as many fun and fulfilling sober activities as we can into our daily schedule. One of the blessings of beginning your personal journey of addiction recovery in such a gorgeous environment is the integrated accessibility of countless adventures and explorations. For your convenience, we have compiled a list of 8 ways to have good, clean, sober fun on this striking island. Take a look, and feel free to add your own to the list!

Hawaii drug rehab therapy

Sober Fun in Maui

  • Go snorkeling.

Believe it or not, snorkeling is one of the cheapest outdoor activities Maui has to offer – you can rent gear for only a couple of dollars! And the offshore snorkeling is truly unparalleled, no matter where you are on the island. We recommend checking out the snorkeling at Molokini Crater, seeing as the area is home to an abundance of sea life and its waters are protected.

  • Hike in Hana.

The drive to Hana is absolutely breathtaking, though 5 hours spent navigating winding roads may not be the most viable excursion for the weak-of-stomach. Fortunately, the road is lined with numerous hiking trails, which will lead you to waterfalls, ocean cliffs, and a wide array of additional scenery. Take a day-long hike and spend ample time appreciating the beauty of Hawaii, while taking in views that will rejuvenate your spirit and instill a deeper sense of gratitude for the world around you.

  • Explore some waterfalls.

Grab a few friends, pack a picnic, and go for a day trip to one of the hundreds of beautiful natural waterfalls scattered across the island. The falls at Wailele Farm (also known as Twin Falls), are easily accessible and open to the public. As part of our treatment program at Maui Recovery, we take our clients on many day excursions to experience the waterfalls for themselves – though investigating this natural phenomenon is an ideal activity for those at any point in their recovery.

sober fun

  • Check out the lava tubes.

Ancient lava flow throughout Maui left behind some of the most interesting and unique caves and tubes on the planet, all easily accessible through guided tours or self-guided exploration. If you are looking to explore the lava tubes on our own, take a trip to Wai’anapanapa State Park. Here you can safely inspect one of the largest tubes on the island, which is nestled in the side of a cliff on one of Maui’s magical black sand beaches. This cliff overlooks the expansive ocean, making it a beautiful place to meditate and appreciate all of the imitable natural marvels Hawaii has to offer.

  • Go camping in Lanai.

There is no shortage of things to do in Lanai – and the area is known for having some of the best camping in Hawaii. Lanai is also home to some of the best scuba diving locations in the state – so pack your gear or come prepared to rent! Like snorkeling, scuba diving is a relatively inexpensive way to have authentic, sober fun.

  • Watch the sunrise.

While catching the sunrise in any part of Maui is likely to be breathtaking and unforgettable, climbing to the top of Haleakala Crater before the sun peeks above the sea is an experience unlike any other. Waking up before the sunrise is probably a pretty unfamiliar event, especially for those in early recovery. Take advantage of the joys of waking up without a pounding headache, and breathe the fresh morning air deep into your lungs as you express gratitude for finally being able to appreciate the beauty of the world around you.

  • Check out some historic churches.

Churches? Yes, as it turns out, Maui is absolutely brimming with beautiful, ornate churches – some dating back to the early 1800s. Not only is church a great place to develop a further grasp on your personal spirituality, but attending a new church is a great way to make friends. And if sitting through a sermon isn’t your thing, checking out the architecture and exploring the rich history can be just as fulfilling.

  • Go kayaking.

We at Maui Recovery strongly encourage our clients to participate in kayaking as part of our adventure therapy program. Those in recovery tend to find this outdoor activity provides an ideal time for meditation and self-reflection, helping to bolster spirituality and interconnectedness. There are hundreds of ideal kayaking spots all throughout the island, where you can further observe the ornate sea life or merely drift and enjoy feeling the warm sunshine on your face.

At Maui Recovery, one of our main goals is to teach recovering addicts how to have fun and thoroughly enjoy their newfound lives. We incorporate the beautiful natural surroundings into our specialized recovery program, teaching healing and recuperation through interconnectedness with the world around us. For more information on our specific program of recovery, please give us a call today at 800-919-2066.

Drug Rehab – What to Look For

Choosing a Drug Rehab Center

When deciding which drug rehab is best for you or your loved one, you are liable to consider obvious factors such as geographical location, commitment length, and out-of-pocket cost. While these are all important components to consider, you will want to be sure you are not overlooking other crucial features – such as provided services, specialty therapeutic practices, and potential treatment of dual diagnosis disorders. Take a look at the list of questions we have compiled in order to make your selection process all that much easier!

choosing drug rehab

Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is attending a gender-specific rehab important to me?

Perhaps you have suffered trauma at the hands of a member of the opposite sex, or you have a history of seeking personal validation through sexual interactions. Maybe you simply find it difficult to form healthy relationships with members of your own sex, and would like to learn to do so in a healthy and supportive environment. Whatever the reason may be, many find gender-specific rehab to be especially beneficial. Many programs, such as ours, cater to both men and women – but keep group therapy sessions and living quarters entirely separate. This variation of gender-specific treatment allows men and women to develop heathy relationships with members of the same sex while learning to interact in a healthy and positive way with members of the opposite sex.

  • Do I have any dual diagnosis psychological disorders that need to be addressed?

The vast majority of addicts and alcoholics simultaneously suffer from some variation of mental disorder – depression, anxiety, or a combination of the two are the most common dual diagnosis disorders amongst those with substance abuse issues. If you suffer from a diagnosed mental disorder, or if you believe that you may be suffering from a previously undiagnosed disorder, looking into a drug rehab with an on-site psychiatrist may be especially beneficial.

  • Would I prefer to attend an inpatient rehab that focuses on holistic methods of treatment?

Nowadays, most reputable inpatient treatment facilities offer some form of holistically-based treatment. This could range from acupuncture and aromatherapy to yoga and adventure therapy. When looking for a drug rehab, take into consideration whether or not they advertise themselves as “holistically based”. This essentially means that a spiritual approach is taken, alongside a traditional emotional and mental approach (therapeutic and psychological healing). Our program of recovery puts a heavy emphasis on holistically-based treatment approaches!

drug rehab center in hawaii

  • Do I have any past trauma that needs to be addressed?

Many addicts and alcoholics will initially turn to drugs and alcohol as a means of coping with overwhelming emotional pain associated with significant past trauma. If you have suffered any degree of traumatic experience in the past and have not yet had the opportunity to sufficiently work through it alongside a professional, look for an inpatient treatment center that specializes in working with clients who have undergone unresolved trauma.

  • Does the rehab I am looking into offer family services?

Many addiction specialists and medical professionals alike avidly refer to addiction as a ‘family disease’. This is not only because the emotional, mental, and physical consequences of substance dependency affect all those involved, but also because the dynamics of the familial unit often exacerbate the disease. Issues such as codependency and enmeshment typically run deep in families that involve an addicted member, and family programs help to resolve these issues by treating every member simultaneously. Our program of recovery incorporates regular family therapy sessions, which work to reverse familial behavioral patterns that may prove detrimental to long-term sobriety.

  • How willing am I to undergo an extended-stay treatment process?

It is often said that without willingness, little else is possible. When it comes to addiction recovery, this statement is exceptionally true. When deciding on which drug rehab facility is right for you, make sure that you are completely willing to undergo an extended stay – perhaps more extended than you initially anticipate. While 30 days in inpatient rehab is great, it is said to take 90 days to completely break a habit. Put in the time now so you will never have to repeat the process!

Choosing an inpatient treatment facility does not need to be an overwhelming, stress-inducing experience! Simply take these important factors into consideration when looking for a Hawaii drug rehab that best suits your personal needs and requirements and caters to your unique preferences. For more information on the Maui Recovery program of addiction treatment, please feel free to contact one of our trained representatives today. We are standing by to help answer any questions or address any additional concerns you may have. We look forward to speaking with you soon!