Are There Support Groups for Parents of Addicts?

Are There Support Groups for Parents of Addicts?

You’ve probably made it here because you have a child that has been battling their own addiction. You’ve tried everything, and at this point, you are desperate because nothing seems to work. Although you are not the one going through the addiction, you are still being affected by its consequences. In addition, you are feeling hopeless and alone because it seems like no one around you truly understands what you’re going through. That can feel very isolating and scary, but the truth is, you are not alone. There are many other families out there that are going through similar situations as you. You may be wondering how you can find them. 

Are There Support Groups for Parents of Addicts? 

Many support groups are available for parents of addicts looking for a safe space to share their concerns, seek support, and ask questions. A quick google search will allow you to find support groups specific to your area as mental health centers often have them available. There are also groups that are run nationally, such as Nar-Anon, Al-Anon, and Families Anonymous. The most important thing about these groups is that they are always anonymous, do not cost anything to the members, and are available on a walk-in basis. 

Nar-Anon Family Groups

Nar-Anon Family Groups is a 12-step program for family members and friends of addicts. It is a place for people to go for support when they are struggling with dealing with the behavior of an addict, whether it’s their brother/sister, mother/father, sister/son, friend, and more. This group allows its members to share their experiences, look for support, and ask questions in a safe space. Just like Narcotics Anonymous, this group is also anonymous. Meetings are available in-person or online. There is no financial cost associated with attending. 

Al-Anon Family Groups

Al-Anon Family Groups, similar to Nar-Anon, is also a 12-step program for family members and friends of addicts. However, it is geared specifically toward those who are affected by a loved one’s alcohol abuse. Al-Anon is also a place to seek support, share experiences, and ask questions anonymously. They have meetings available online and in person. There is no financial cost associated with attending.

Families Anonymous

Families Anonymous is also a 12-step program for family members of addicts. It was originally created in 1971 by a group of parents in California who were concerned about their children battling substance use. Today, this group helps provide support and a safe space for all family members and friends who are struggling with someone in their life who is battling addiction. 

How to Get Your Child Help with Addiction Today

It can be challenging to try to help your child with their addiction. It’s tough when they are not ready for treatment. However, talking with them, going over their options, and letting them know that you will always be there for support can be helpful. Once they are ready for treatment, it’s important to point them in the right direction of trust mental health professionals that are trained in substance use. The Last House can help. 

The Last House has been around for over ten years to help men strive to achieve sobriety in their life. We offer a supportive environment with skilled staff whose passion is to help those with addiction concerns and services that promote building skills to maintain a sober lifestyle. Our program includes groups, therapy, accountability, and exploring sober activities. When you leave The Last House, you will leave with long-lasting connections and the skills you need to continue your sobriety long-term. The Last House is connected with Thrive Treatment to be easily in contact with quality treatment teams to ensure the care you are getting is consistent. Contact us today to learn more about our program and how we can help you.

What Happens if OCD Is Left Untreated?

What Happens if OCD Is Left Untreated?

You may hear people talk about having OCD in a light-hearted manner, but OCD is not a joke. Obsessive-compulsive disorder, or OCD, involves thoughts and behaviors that overtake the individual. Sadly what happens if OCD is left untreated is that the individual becomes paralyzed by obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors. At The Last House, we understand mental health, and we know the complexities of obsessive-compulsive disorder. In addition, we know how untreated OCD can lead to self-medicating to cope with the symptoms. We’re here to help you manage your OCD and any substance use so that you can lead a full life. 

What Is OCD?

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is a chronic mental health disorder in which a person experiences uncontrollable, repeated thoughts and/or behaviors that they feel compelled to repeat over and over. OCD is characterized by obsessions and compulsions. Obsessions are repeated thoughts, urges, or mental images that cause anxiety. Compulsions are repetitive behaviors that a person feels the desire to do in response to obsessive thoughts. For example, everyone may turn back to check that a door is locked or check to make sure that the oven has indeed been turned off. However, obsessive-compulsive disorder is much more than rechecking a detail now and then. While most can overcome thoughts to recheck items, that is not always the case for those suffering from OCD. An inability to function is what happens when OCD is left untreated. 

What Are the Signs of OCD?

Those with OCD will face obsessions, compulsions, or a combination of the two.  Common obsessions include:

  • A fear of germs,
  • Unwanted taboo thoughts, 
  • Aggressive thoughts toward self, and 
  • Having things in a symmetrical or perfect order.

In response to these compulsive thoughts, many with OCD find themselves cleaning or handwashing exxcessively, arranging items in a precise way, repeatedly rechecking things, and compulsively counting. Most with OCD do not derive any pleasure from these ritualistic behaviors but repeat them to get relief from the obsessive thoughts. Some with OCD will also have motor tics such as facial grimacing, eye blinking, throat clearing, sniffing, grunting sounds, or more. Many, if not all, of these symptoms may increase when the individual is under additional stress. 

What Happens if OCD Is Left Untreated?

Obsessive-compulsive disorder can be treated so that the symptoms can be managed. Often symptoms will ebb and flow over time. Self-medication and isolation are two examples of what happens if OCD is left untreated. Many with OCD will begin to aboid situations or people that trigger their symptoms. Others will turn to drugs and alcohol to quiet the obsessive thoughts. Left untreated, OCD diminishes the individual’s quality of life and reduces the ability to function independently. Through therapy and other approaches, obsessive-compulsive disorder can be managed to allow for a full, independent, happy life. OCD doesn’t have to result in isolation and despair. 

How To Get Help With OCD Today

The Last House is a network of structured sober living homes in the heart of West Los Angeles. We believe in providing our clients with the tools to have a meaningful life and participate in their sobriety.  Activities such as service commitments, sober parties, conventions, dances, and house outings are all a part of helping you learn how to have fun in sobriety.  Comprised of active members of the Los Angeles Sober Living community, our staff is familiar with many recovery support groups in the area.  We understand the relationship between mental health and addiction. We can support you while you learn how to manage your OCD without isolating or turning to drugs and alcohol. If you’re wondering how to create your sober life, The Last House is here to help. 

What Is the Most Common Misconception Surrounding Mental Health?

What Is the Most Common Misconception Surrounding Mental Health?

The number of misconceptions about mental health and mental illness is both staggering and saddening. While the stigma surrounding mental illness is decreasing, there is still a significant amount of misinformation. Perhaps the most common misconception surrounding mental health is that you don’t have to work to nurture your mental health. Mental health, like physical health, requires maintenance. Just like you have to provide nutrition and movement to sustain your physical health, you must also nourish and exercise your mental health.   At The Last House, we love to talk about mental health. We are here to help you learn more about your mental health and provide any support that you might need. 

What Is Mental Illness?

The National Alliance on Mental Illness defined mental illness as a condition that affects an individual’s thinking, feeling, behavior, or mood. Mental illness often impacts a person’s day-to-day life and their ability to relate to others. One of the most common misconceptions surrounding mental health is that mental illness is rare. Researchers have found that one in five adults in the United States experiences mental illness each year. Additionally, one in six youth aged six to seventeen also experiences mental illness each year. Mental illness is rarely the result of one event but results from a combination of genetics, environmental factors, and lifestyle. Mental health disorders and mental illness are not indicators that someone is broken or needs to be fixed. 

What Are Common Mental Illnesses?

There are many different mental health disorders, and most affect your mood, behavior, or thinking. It is not unusual for someone to be diagnosed with more than one mental illness. Common mental illness categories include anxiety disorders, behavioral disorders, eating disorders, substance use disorders, mood disorders, personality disorders, psychotic disorders, trauma disorders, and more.  While anxiety disorders include obsessive-compulsive disorder, panic disorders, and phobias, behavioral disorders include illnesses such as Attention Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD) and Oppositional-Defiant Disorder (ODD). 

Other mental illnesses can be tied to food or substances. This is the case with drug and alcohol use disorders, anorexia, bulimia, and binge eating. Personality disorders include borderline personality disorder and antisocial personality disorder. Mood disorders can involve fluctuations between moods, as is the case with bipolar disorder, or persistent, unchanging mood as is the case with depression. Trauma disorders are tied to the experience of living through a traumatic experience, while psychotic disorders like schizophrenia often include hallucinations and delusions. Sadly, suicidal thoughts and behavior can accompany all of the various mental health disorders. 

What Is the Most Common Misconception Surrounding Mental Illness?

When examining what is the most common misconception surrounding mental illness, there are a lot of misconceptions from which to choose. However, one of the most common and most damaging is that those with mental illness are violent and/or unpredictable. The truth is that those with mental illness are not more likely to engage in violence. Instead, those with mental illness are ten times more likely to be the victim of violent crime. Often, we are surrounded by people who are actively coping with mental illness, and we don’t even know it. 

How to End the Stigma Around Mental Illness Today

Ending the stigma around mental illness begins with openly discussing mental health. Mental health and mental illness need to be discussed openly rather than in hushed whispers. You would never expect someone to feel shame for a medical diagnosis, and we must approach mental illness in the same way. 

The Last House is a network of structured sober living homes in the heart of West Los Angeles. We believe in providing our clients with the tools to participate in their sobriety and nurture their mental health.  We help you learn how to live through service commitments, sober parties, conventions, dances, and house outings. 

At The Last House, you’ll learn how to have a meaningful life filled with fun in sobriety. Composed of active members of the Los Angeles Sober Living community, our staff is familiar with many recovery support groups in the area. So if you’re wondering how to create your sober life, The Last House is here to help. 

Why Drug or Alcohol Addiction Is a Chronic Relapsing Illness

Why Drug or Alcohol Addiction Is a Chronic Relapsing Illness

It’s hard to find a disease that is more heartbreaking and frustrating than addiction. You may spend years trying to convince yourself or a loved one to stop using drugs and alcohol. Then, one day, you decide to try, and you get some sober days under your belt only to find yourself relapsing. You might see relapse as a failure, but sometimes relapse is a part of recovery. Your brain doesn’t know how to cope without drugs and alcohol, so it’s going to take some practice to do so. Drug or alcohol addiction is a chronic relapsing illness because it’s a disease that affects the mind, body, and spirit. At The Last House, we understand how frustrating addiction can be and why relapse can seem like a failure. However, we also know that there are valuable lessons to be learned from a relapse. 

What Is Addiction?

Most people will not see their first drink or their first drug as the gateway to a life filled with addiction. Not everyone who uses will find themselves addicted. Addiction occurs when there is a perfect storm between biological, social, and psychological factors. Many won’t realize that they’ve crossed over into addiction until it is too late. Addiction is a chronic disease characterized by drug seeking and use that is compulsive and hard to control, despite harmful consequences. Repeatedly using drugs and alcohol changes the brain, with continued use resulting in more changes. The more you use drugs and alcohol, the more you will need to use them to achieve the same effect. Before you even know what happened, all of your decisions are about getting more drugs to use more drugs. You may start each day intending not to use, but drug or alcohol addiction is a chronic relapsing illness. Knowing this can help you to approach your recovery differently. 

Why Drug or Alcohol Addiction Is a Chronic Relapsing Illness

Using drugs or alcohol changes you, and it takes time for you to undo the damage that has been done to your body and your mind.  Detoxing your body takes far less time than rewiring the pathways in your brain. If you’ve been turning to drugs and alcohol for the last ten years, your brain will still see drugs and alcohol as the “go-to” for a long time. Drug or alcohol addiction is a chronic relapsing illness because, for years, you have been telling your brain that drugs and alcohol are the answer – regardless of the question. Post-acute withdrawal syndrome is a collection of symptoms that you may experience for months or even years after you stop using. Symptoms include feeling edgy, having difficulty sleeping, being tired, experiencing memory issues, and having urges to use. Understanding these symptoms can help you be better prepared to face cravings and avoid a relapse. 

How To Maintain Long-Term Recovery From a Drug or Alcohol Addiction

Maintaining long-term sobriety requires vigilance. In the same way that an individual diagnosed with diabetes must manage their healthy daily, so must a person who faces addiction. Staying sober requires daily effort. If you discover that someone you love has been using drugs or alcohol, you’ll find a world of options available to get them on the road to recover. 

The Last House is here to help keep them on that road. We are a network of sober living homes in the heart of West Los Angeles. We believe in providing our clients with the tools to have a meaningful life and participate in their sobriety.  Activities such as service commitments, sober parties, conventions, dances, and house outings are all a part of helping you learn how to have fun in sobriety.  If you’re helping your loved one create a sober life, The Last House is here to help. Contact us today. 

Resources for Adult Children of Addicted Parents

Resources for Adult Children of Addicted Parents

Just like other chronic diseases, addiction is a disease that affects the entire family. Addiction changes the addict and, as a result, impacts how they interact with their family. The entire household is changed by addiction. The effects of having an addicted parent can be felt long after childhood and long after the parent gets sober. Our parents set the tone for the relationships we form throughout the rest of our lives. Dysfunction in these relationships can create dysfunction in our later relationships. 

Adult children of addicted parents may find that they struggle more in their relationships than those who grew up without addiction in their homes. At The Last House, we understand the devastating effects of addiction on the family and we know how those effects can linger. We know the value of working through these effects and are happy to help you explore the available resources. 

What Does It Mean To Be Adult Children of Addicted Parents?

Whether your parent has found their way to recovery or not, you may still be feeling the effects of their addiction. Adult children of addicted parents grow up with at least some level of dysfunction and it affects how they interact with the rest of the world. Many who are adult children of addicted parents find themselves struggling with addiction and others will find themselves in relationships with addicts.

The children of addicts often engage in many unhealthy behaviors in relationships. They often are unable to set healthy boundaries with others, put the needs of others before their own, and engage in people-pleasing.  Adult Children of Alcoholics/Dysfunctional Families (ACA) is a twelve-step program that offers children of addicts a place to heal from growing up with an addict and the associated dysfunction. ACA describes itself as “a safe, nonjudgmental environment that allows us to grieve our childhoods and conduct an honest inventory of ourselves and our family—so we may (i) identify and heal core trauma, (ii) experience freedom from shame and abandonment, and (iii) become our own loving parents”.  Through participation in peer support groups such as ACA and working with a therapist, many adult children of addicted parents can heal. 

Examples of How Addiction Affects Family Members

As children, we learn about attachment, nurturing, and socialization from our families. If one or both of our parents struggle with addiction, the way that we interact with other individuals will be impacted. Growing up with an addicted parent can lead to unmet developmental needs. The chaos of an addicted parent often leads to the disruption of attachment, roles, routines, communication, finances, and socialization. Because addiction requires so many secrets and lies, it can be hard for a child to understand what is and is not real. Additionally, many adult children of addicted parents report having to grow up much faster to take on the responsibilities that their parent was not fulfilling or to deal with the abuse that occurred. The effects of being the child of an addicted parent are long-lasting and often require a great deal of therapeutic work to overcome. 

Why You Should Live In a Sober Living House

Located throughout West Los Angeles, The Last House is a network of structured sober living homes. We believe in enabling our clients to have a meaningful life. The Last House will provide you with the tools to participate in your recovery.  Activities such as service commitments, sober parties, conventions, dances, and house outings are all a part of helping you learn how to have fun in sobriety. As active members of the Los Angeles Sober Living community, our staff understands what it takes to stay sober and can support you in your journey. So, if you’re wondering how to create your sober life, The Last House is here to help. 

How to Learn Relapse Prevention Coping Skills

How to Learn Relapse Prevention Coping Skills

Originally, relapse prevention was a separate aspect of addiction treatment, not combined with the standard treatment, but something reserved for after… later. This practice was in place for many years, before relapse prevention was integrated into addiction treatment, giving addicts the opportunity to practice these prevention measures in a controlled environment like rehab.

Relapse prevention coping skills are the skills necessary for individuals to learn to maintain sobriety after leaving addiction treatment. Through this process individuals are able to learn and practice these relapse prevention coping skills to make them habits prior to their return or next real world trigger. 

The Last House integrates relapse prevention coping skills into their addiction treatment programs by providing real world experiences for practice and supportive community. To see how we utilize these coping skills and to see how we can support your sustainable recovery, contact us today at The Last House.

What Are Relapse Prevention Coping Skills?

Relapse prevention skills are a combination of mental and physically habitual practices you can put into place to monitor your personal mental health. This can be done by addressing the following things: fear, redefining fun, learning from setbacks, and becoming comfortable with being uncomfortable. These mental tasks can help prevent individuals from falling into one of these three forms of relapse- emotional, mental, or physical.

Physically, there are several relapse prevention techniques that you can put into place in your daily life that will help you maintain long-term sobriety and mental strength. Being aware of your surroundings, maintaining a healthy diet and rest habits, participating in self-care activities, and accessing your support system are physical things you can do to keep your mind and body strong. 

How Do You Learn Relapse Prevention Coping Skills?

In addiction treatment you will be taught many helpful relapse prevention tools and develop a relapse prevention plan. For example, one of the tools you may be taught in treatment is “HALT: Ask yourself if you are Hungry? Angry? Lonely? Or Tired? Oftentimes being hungry, angry, lonely, or tired can trigger a desire to use, and therefore it is important to identify [and] address the underlying need instead of using a substance.” Or even “SOBER: Use the SOBER brief meditation when feeling a desire to use: Stop, Observe, Breathe, Expand, Respond.” 

While these tools may be specifically taught in addiction treatment, it is also important to remember that through your relapse prevention plan, you may have a recovery wallet card, a support network, or self-help groups that you can attend to support you through this time.

How Can the Last House Help Me With Relapse Prevention?

Our addiction treatment program can support you at any point in the addiction treatment process. Our clients learn to manage their addiction in a safe, fun, and program-oriented setting where they can learn to focus on their purpose, progress, and building the foundation for their future.

At The Last House we offer addiction treatment through sober living communities and our clinical campus where men are building a sober community through shared experiences and connections. And we don’t just focus on addiction. We work with our clients to help them manage all their mental health needs through a holistic approach to developing a stable base of development and lifelong achievement.

Through our sober programs, clients are taught relapse prevention skills and are given the opportunity to use them in real-life situations and group sober outings. Through this process clients can experience the triggers and struggles of addiction while surrounded by a support system of men working together towards sustainable recovery.

Contact The Last House today to see how we can support your recovery.

Mental Health Resources for Men | The Last House

Different Mental Health Resources for Men

Your mental health can be impacted by a great number of things within and outside of your control. Asking for help is something within your control.

The Last House provides mental health treatment and sober living in Los Angeles, California. Our mission is focused on providing a safe, fun, and program-oriented setting that helps our clients achieve their mental health and life foals. Contact us if you are ready to make a change for the betterment of your future, today.

What Is Mental Health?

Mental health encompasses our emotional, psychological, and social well-being and just like physical health, many illnesses and physical situations can impact our mental health.

For a long time, there has been a stigma about mental illness and getting therapeutic treatment or counseling has been judged or mocked. But now, mental health initiatives are working to combat the stigma around mental health. 

Mental Health America released a 5-minute Guide to Men’s Mental Health, citing 6 million men struggling with depression in the United States. It also indicates that 1 in 5 men will struggle alcohol dependency in their lifetime and that the suicide rates for men are far higher than those of women. These mental illnesses are just that, illnesses that require medical treatment. 

If you are unsure if you or a loved one are struggling with a mental health disorder, the National Institute of Mental Health indicates the following warning signs: 

  • Anger, irritability, or aggressiveness
  • Noticeable changes in mood, energy level, or appetite
  • Difficulty sleeping or sleeping too much
  • Difficulty concentrating, feeling restless, or on edge
  • Increased worry or feeling stressed
  • Misuse of alcohol and/or drugs
  • Sadness or hopelessness
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Feeling flat or having trouble feeling positive emotions
  • Engaging in high-risk activities
  • Aches, headaches, digestive problems without a clear cause
  • Obsessive thinking or compulsive behavior
  • Thoughts or behaviors that interfere with work, family, or social life
  • Unusual thinking or behaviors that concern other people

If you are experiencing these behavior changes or have noticed these warning signs in a loved one, contact The Last House today for an evaluation. Our experienced and compassionate team are ready to support individuals on a safe path of recovery.

What Are the Different Mental Health Resources for Men?

Men are less likely to get mental health support than women due to social norms, a reluctance to talk, and because of downplaying symptoms. Knowing this, rehabilitation and mental health facilities have worked to develop interactive opportunities for men to access mental health resources.

In TIP56, a treatment improvement protocol from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, a 200+ page document on improving mental health practices for men, multiple mental health professionals pooled their knowledge to create and improve mental health treatment for men. Mental health resources like therapy, according to TIP56, are best provided in group therapy, single-gender groups for men, group activities that promote community building, individual therapy, and family and couples therapy are recommended.

How Can The Last House Help?

The Last House provides a continuum of support through multiple male mental-health focused programs. Through sober living, activity based therapeutic outings, and our clinical campus, our clients have the opportunity to develop a positive mental health structure focused on achieving their goals and sobriety.

Our 2020 Outcomes Study showed that of the respondents we supported over the last several years, 87% had maintained sobriety and 80% of those individuals had been sober for over a year at the time of survey. Our former clients indicated greatly improved family relationships, employment statuses, satisfaction with life, educational goals, and emotional wellbeing. 

Contact us today to see how The Last House can be your first step on the journey of recovery.

What Are the Benefits of Alcoholics Anonymous?

What Are the Benefits of Alcoholics Anonymous?

Among the many resources, you will find in trying to get sober, Alcoholics Anonymous is one that you will likely hear mentioned repeatedly. Founded more than eighty years ago, Alcoholics Anonymous has been instrumental for millions getting sober. A quick look at the program helps us to understand the benefits of Alcoholics Anonymous. In addition to it being a free and accessible program, Alcoholics Anonymous has meetings worldwide multiple times per day. In fact, meetings may be found every hour of the day in some major metropolitan areas. Finding the right Alcoholics Anonymous group for yourself is a little bit like trying on clothes. You will want to try out multiple groups until you find one that suits you. Each group has its own personality.  At The Last House, we know the importance that twelve-step groups can play in long-term recovery. We are happy to help you explore the Alcoholics Anonymous meetings in the area and help you find the right one for you. 

What Are the Benefits of Alcoholics Anonymous?

One of the reasons you will hear so much about Alcoholics Anonymous and other twelve-step recovery programs is their availability and accessibility.  In 2012, Alcoholics Anonymous estimated nearly 64,000 groups with almost 1.5 million members in the United States and Canada. But it’s not just about the numbers; it’s about the program. Alcoholics Anonymous has its foundation in service. One of the basic tenets of Alcoholics Anonymous is that you have to “give it away to keep it.” This means that to keep your own sobriety, you have to help someone else get or keep theirs.  By attending meetings regularly, you will build a support network and become a part of the recovery community. In a survey of its members, Alcoholics Anonymous found that roughly one-third of its members have one to five years of continuous sobriety and attend two to four meetings per week. It is this regular attendance at meetings that seems to unlock the benefits of Alcoholics Anonymous. 

What Are Other Ways to Ensure Long-Term Recovery?

Ensuring long-term recovery involves more than just applying the benefits of Alcoholics Anonymous teachings. Long-term recovery requires change at all levels. Many who find their way to recovery see that they must change the people they interact with, the job at which they work, and/or the home they live in. While not all must change everything, the point is to change those things that may trigger you into a relapse. If you associate your friends with using drugs and alcohol, you may need to stop spending time with those friends. Likewise, if you’re living in a home where drug and alcohol use is the norm, you may need to find a place to live that better supports your sobriety. And if your place of employment also happens to employ your dealer, you’ll want to move onto a new job opportunity. The goal is to structure your life and your surroundings in a way that supports long-term recovery. While you can go to several Alcoholics Anonymous meetings each day, you also have to learn how to live outside of the meetings. 

Why You Should Live in a Sober Living House

The Last House is a network of structured sober living homes in the heart of West Los Angeles. We believe in providing our clients with the tools to have a meaningful life and participate in their sobriety.  Activities such as service commitments, sober parties, conventions, dances, and house outings are all a part of helping you learn how to have fun in sobriety.  Composed of active members of the Los Angeles Sober Living community, our staff is familiar with many recovery support groups in the area. So if you’re wondering how to create your sober life, The Last House is here to help. 

What’s Pink Clouding in Addiction Recovery?

What’s Pink Clouding in Addiction Recovery?

Getting sober results in a significant number of changes physically and mentally. After years of numbing yourself with drugs and alcohol, you will begin to view yourself and the world around you differently. Often in the early stages of recovery, you can feel particularly energetic and confident about your ability to stay sober. It’s a bit like how you might feel anytime you begin a new habit or make a significant change in your life. It’s what pink clouding is; the time in early recovery where you are in the honeymoon phase of your sobriety. It’s a great time and you can use the increased energy to propel yourself into long-term recovery. It’s also a time when you need to be aware of the dangers of relapse. At The Last House, we understand the various stages of recovery and we know how to support you as you pass through them on the road to long-term recovery. 

What’s Pink Clouding in Addiction Recovery?

You may hear others in peer support recovery meetings refer to it and wonder what pink clouding is. The early stages of recovery are often referred to as the early abstinence stage, but you may also hear it called the honeymoon or pink cloud stage. Most often, you will hear it come with a warning attached because it’s a stage that won’t last. 

During pink clouding, you have increased energy, intense feelings, increased optimism, and mood swings. However, you may also experience memory problems, difficulty concentrating, and mild paranoia. Sometimes the pink cloud can make you feel overconfident in your recovery, putting you at risk for a relapse. This is especially true if you also have a hard time prioritizing activities in your life or continue to resist the changes needed to stay sober. The pink cloud can be a very happy time in your recovery, but it is crucial to know the risks of relapse during this time. 

Tips to Ensure Long-Term Sobriety

Getting sober and staying sober are two different things and require different skills. If you think of getting sober as the process of physically breaking free of your addiction, then staying sober is all about what goes on in your head. But what’s the pink clouding effect on long-term sobriety? Well, that pink cloud can sometimes take you from confident to overconfident in your sobriety, which can have negative consequences. If you become overconfident, you might start to believe that you don’t need to work at staying sober. You might also begin to think that you can safely be around others who are using. However, long-term sobriety takes work and maintenance. It’s important to know that you will likely encounter something that makes you want to drink or use drugs. Your job is to maintain your recovery so that you can face those triggers without using them. It’s vital to remember that recovery is a marathon, not a sprint. 

How The Last House Can Help You or a Loved One Today 

If you or a loved one have been using drugs, you’ll find many options available for the road to recovery. The Last House is here to help keep you or them on that road. We are a network of sober living homes in the heart of West Los Angeles. We believe in providing our clients with the tools to have a meaningful life and participate in their sobriety.  We understand all about the pink cloud and the other stages of recovery. Activities such as service commitments, sober parties, conventions, dances, and house outings are all a part of helping you learn how to have fun in sobriety. So if you’re creating a sober life or supporting someone who is, The Last House is here to help. Contact us today. 

The Negative Effects of Long-Term Alcohol Use

The Negative Effects of Long-Term Alcohol Use

Whether you’re actively drinking or are sober, you may wonder about the effects of alcohol on your body. The ads for alcohol suggest that those drinking alcohol are in the best shape of their lives. However, those who have consumed alcohol for an extended time know that the effects of long-term alcohol use are anything but healthy. Alcohol affects every part of your body. 

Long-term alcohol use leads to chronic diseases, injuries, and even death. It impacts more than your physical health too and can lead to anxiety, depression, and other mental health disorders. The Last House is here to help you learn more about how to help your mind and your body heal from the effects of long-term alcohol use. 

Is Alcohol Addictive?

While many debate whether alcohol is addictive, the facts are that the body does become dependent on it with regular use. Your body strives to keep itself in balance. When you drink alcohol regularly, the balance is shifted, and your body changes things to adapt. You don’t realize it as it’s happening, but if you stop drinking alcohol, your body will let you know. If you drink alcohol daily and stop, you will feel like your body is punishing you for stopping. Your symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, headache, sweating, anxiety, and even seizures. Your body is not punishing you, but it is trying to learn how to function without alcohol. In addition to the physical effects of long-term alcohol use, the pathways in your brain are also impacted. It can take months for your brain to return to its pre-alcohol functioning. Knowing this can help you understand why the first several months of sobriety can feel like an emotional roller coaster. 

What Are the Effects of Long-Term Alcohol Use on the Body?

Alcohol is the bad party gift that just keeps on giving. Short-term alcohol use increases the risk for motor vehicle accidents, violence, risky sexual behaviors, and more.  Excessive alcohol use led to about ninety-five thousand deaths and nearly three million years of potential life lost from 2011-2015. Almost everyone knows that regular alcohol use can damage your liver, leading to cirrhosis or other chronic illness. But it doesn’t stop at your liver; the effects of long-term alcohol use may be seen in nearly every part of your body. Your pancreas and alcohol are not friends. 

Regular alcohol use impacts how your pancreas functions and can lead to chronic pancreatitis and diabetes. It can also damage your stomach leading to ulcers, colitis, and other gastrointestinal chronic diseases. Alcohol can damage your heart and increases your risk for chronic heart disease, heart failure, and heart attack. It can also lead to cancer, especially cancer of the mouth, throat, esophagus, and breast. When you drink alcohol regularly, your immune system cannot work correctly, and you are at a greater risk for infection and general fatigue. The frightening fact is that these are just a few of the effects of long-term alcohol use. Your body and alcohol are not friends. 

Sober Living at The Last House

The Last House Sober Living is a network of structured sober living homes in southern California. We believe in providing our clients with the tools to have a meaningful life and participate in their own sobriety.  We’ll help you learn how to live and have fun in sobriety through service commitments, sober parties, conventions, dances, and house outings.  Our experienced staff is composed of active members of the Los Angeles Sober Living community. If you’re wondering where to start to create your sober life, The Last House is here to help you build a life in recovery.