What is Dopamine?

Dopamine is a chemical messenger in the brain known as a neurotransmitter. It has been referred to as the “pleasure chemical” in the brain because when we do things that create a feeling of reward, dopamine levels are increased. Usually, dopamine increases occur from naturally pleasurable activities, like sex or eating food, but drugs create…

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The Dangers of Insufflation

Some people choose to insufflate, or snort, psychoactive substances because it causes them to affect the person faster. When a drug is snorted, the drugs are absorbed through mucous membranes in the nose and enter into the bloodstream without being broken down by the stomach. The result is a stronger and faster high, albeit a…

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What is Codependency?

Merriam-Webster defines codependency as a “psychological condition or a relationship in which a person is controlled or manipulated by another who is affected with a pathological condition (such as an addiction to alcohol or heroin,” or, more broadly, it is the “dependence on the needs of or control by another.” Codependency was originally thought to…

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Overcoming Your Environment After Treatment

Leaving treatment and entering back into our previous environment can be difficult. We are reintroduced to certain stressors and problems that may have previously exacerbated our addiction. Our home and community life may have been a factor in our drug and alcohol use, and it is necessary to overcome these environmental stressors if we are…

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How Dangerous is Fentanyl?

The recent increases in overdose deaths all across the United States are caused, in part, by fentanyl. Fentanyl is an extremely dangerous synthetic opioid that is 100 times more powerful than morphine and 25 to 50 times more potent than heroin. The drug rapidly crosses the blood-brain barrier, providing a short but intense effect. Even…

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Get On Your Feet and Meditate!

Many people say, “Meditation is too boring.” They are under the impression that mediation means they have to sit in the lotus position and close their eyes and try to clear their minds. Fortunately, this isn’t the case. A great way to meditate is by getting outside and walking. Many experienced meditation teachers, from Jack…

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Are Steroids Dangerous?

A person who first achieves sobriety is in danger of falling into the trap of behavioral addictions. Food, sex, and gambling are examples of behavioral addictions that a person may find themselves engaging in as an attempt to replace the fleeting feelings of pleasure provided by drugs. Another common behavioral addiction is working out. Unfortunately,…

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Paint Over Anxiety

Anxiety can be difficult to deal with in a healthy way, and it often feels more prominent during the first few crucial weeks or months of sobriety. Our minds and bodies are still healing from the damages of drugs and alcohol, and as a result we may feel more susceptible to feelings of stress, anxiety,…

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How Does Opioid Addiction Affect Women?

Treating opioid addiction requires that treatment staff take into account gender differences when it comes to drug use. Opioid addiction, in particular, affects women different than it affects men. According to the Center for Disease Control, about 18 women die every day from prescription painkiller overdose and in 2010 there were more than 6,600 deaths.…

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Happy, Joyous, and Free in Sobriety

The words “happy, joyous, and free” are said quite frequently in the rooms of recovery meetings. However, what are they referring to? It seems simple enough– we find happiness in sobriety, our lives become filled with joy, and we are free from the chains of addiction. However, the happiness, joyousness, and freedom that we experience…

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