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How to Deal With Addiction Cravings

February 27, 2020

A significant part of navigating your life in recovery is dealing with cravings. While going through treatment is tough, and staying sober can be equally challenging for many people. At South Hills Recovery Project, we’ve put together some tips on how to handle cravings and help keep them from weighing you down.

Factors that Can Contribute to the Urge to Use

Most people who are in recovery have experienced drug cravings or the urge to use. Whether someone is new to being clean and sober or is well-established in their sobriety, the urge to use can present itself. After you stop using drugs or alcohol, your body is out of balance. This is because your brain is still used to the intense highs provided by drugs, and it is still unable to get those types of good feelings from exercising or hugging a friend. Because of this, you may experience the urge to use.

Many people also experience the urge to use when they are in a bad situation. Many people who have a substance abuse disorder used substances as a coping mechanism to deal with issues such as anger or fear. Experiencing these types of emotions when you are sober, can also cause an urge for you to use drugs to overcome these feelings.

Coping with Urges to Use

It is entirely possible to overcome your urges to use. You have already overcome the strong pull of substances to get sober and begin your life of recovery, so when the urge to use arises, draw on that strength. YOu are in control when a craving hits, and each time you overcome your urge to use, you move another step forward in our life of recovery. When a craving hits:

Ask Yourself What is Triggering the Craving

In most cases, there is a reason that you are experiencing the urge to use. By reflecting on what that reason is, you can understand why you feel that way and regain control. Whether you are in a triggering situation or are feeling a strong emotion, understanding the reason behind your craving can provide you with solutions.

Ask for Help

If you are overwhelmed with the urge to use, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Reach out to your sponsor or a close, trusted friend for support. You can also reach out to your treatment center. Having support or someone to talk to can help you beat your craving.

Preventing Your Cravings

Experiencing the urge to use is something many who are in recovery will encounter throughout their life in recovery. Although you are likely to experience cravings, there are ways you can help minimize how often you experience the urge to use.

Keeping yourself both physically and mentally healthy and laying a solid foundation for your recovery can help you remain in the right mindset and can also help you avoid triggers. You may also find an activity that you like doing to keep your mind off of your urge to use. Take up hiking, exercise read a new book, or enjoy a hot cup of tea. Find something that helps you relax or something that gets your endorphins flowing!

If you are seeking drug addiction treatment in South Hills, South Hills Recovery can help. Contact us today to learn more.

Dr. Clark
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