What is an Aftercare Plan in Addiction Recovery?

What Is an Aftercare Plan in Addiction Recovery?

Getting sober is hard work. However, getting sober is just the beginning. You need an aftercare plan that will support your life in long-term recovery. Prior to getting sober your decisions were likely all focused on getting and using drugs and alcohol. After you get sober, you will find that you may have a lot of life decisions to make. It’s essential to know that your choices are votes for or against your recovery and overall health. Having an aftercare plan in place can help you to make those decisions and reduce your stress.  At  The Nook, we understand the importance of an aftercare plan and we would like to be a part of yours.  

What Is an Aftercare Plan in Addiction Recovery?

If you were planning a trip, you would likely figure out where you would go, what sights you would want to see, where you would eat, and where you would sleep. You can think of an aftercare plan as your itinerary for recovery. With the goal of long-term sobriety in mind, you will make decisions about how to structure your life after treatment. Getting and staying sober requires a great many changes.  You may find that you need to change where you work, where you live, and with whom you spend your time. An aftercare plan is something you create while you are in treatment and then refer back to it as you make your way in recovery. Your treatment team can use their expertise to make suggestions and guide you in identifying the resources you need to be successfully sober. An aftercare plan is a blueprint for your sober life. No one should leave rehab or addiction treatment without an aftercare plan.

Why It’s Important to Keep Up With Your Aftercare Plan

While sometimes it is fun to go exploring on a trip without a map, you’ll want to have an aftercare plan to guide you in your sobriety. Many researchers have found that relapse rates after completing treatment can be as high as fifty percent. Most studies have shown that it is the absence of a relapse prevention plan that leads to such a high rate of relapse. It is this high rate of relapse that makes an aftercare plan so vital to your recovery success. Many find it helpful to transition from the higher intensities of treatment to lower intensities of treatment. Your plan might begin with inpatient treatment and then be followed by outpatient counseling and attendance at peer support recovery groups. Likewise, you might find it helpful to reside in a sober living facility and plan other activities that will help support your sobriety. Your aftercare plan will be specific to you and your sobriety. The key is to have a plan and use it.

Why You Should Go to The Nook Sober Living

The early days of sobriety can be challenging, and you may be wondering if you can stay sober. Sober living homes are the bridge between early and long-term sobriety. Depending on your current circumstances, you may want a location close to those you know, or you may want to start over in a new place. Once you’ve selected an area, you’ll want to look for a sober house that will best support you.  Sober living homes located in Los Angeles are located centrally to allow for outings to the beach, the golf course, the mountains, and explore Los Angeles.  At The Nook, we focus on lifelong recovery. We offer our clients support to live a life that allows for maintaining employment, educational, and familial commitments. Contact us today to see how we can help your life in recovery. 

Common Drugs Used by College Students

Common Drugs Used by College Students

College is a time of experimentation. College students take different classes, make new friends, and have new experiences. Many young adults are away from home for the first time and may find themselves with more freedom than ever before. The newfound freedom and a hint of peer pressure can lead to some questionable decisions. Some of those decisions can be riskier than others. Beyond the storied college binge drinking, there are also common drugs used by college students. Understanding the substances that your college student may encounter can help you to prepare them to make more informed and safer choices when you are not there in person to guide them. Arming yourself with more knowledge can also help you recognize the signs of drug use in your college students. Addiction can strike at any age, and The Nook is here to help your college student with the support of a sober living environment. 

Common Drugs Used by College Students

While recent research has shown that some drugs have become less popular with college students, other drugs have become increasingly popular. In fact, in its national study of adult drug use, Monitor the Future found that college students vaping marijuana and nicotine had increased significantly. 

From 2017 to 2019, the prevalence of vaping marijuana had nearly tripled, and vaping nicotine quadrupled. The overall use of marijuana increased considerably, with roughly half of all college students admitting to using marijuana in the previous 30 days. The same survey found that the rates of use for other drugs have not changed substantially. College students continue to engage in binge drinking and use drugs such as cocaine, prescription, illicit opioids, LSD, ecstasy, heroin, and sedatives. However, it is interesting to note that the researchers also found that using marijuana is much more socially accepted than other drugs. Marijuana is a common drug used by college students because it is socially acceptable. 

Signs of Addiction in College Students

You expect your child to grow, mature, and evolve while they are away at college. These expected changes can make it more challenging to identify the signs of addiction. However, you know your child better than anyone else. Trust your gut. You know the difference between your child sharing less information and completing withdrawing. You will likely know the difference between their struggling academically because college is challenging and their completing bombing out. If you can create and maintain an open line of communication with your college student, you’re more likely to be able to see the signs earlier than later. The specific symptoms will be related to the drugs that they are using. Some drugs, such as opioids, have telltale signs such as pinpoint pupils, drowsiness, constipation, nausea, and more. Others such as marijuana may be less obvious as the signs may only show when the person is actively using. In general, you will want to look for changes in demeanor and physical appearance, including:

  • Mood swings
  • Gaining or losing weight
  • Paying less attention to their appearance
  • Changes in self-care habits
  • Increased or decreased sleeping
  • Dishonesty or secrecy
  • Appearing or reporting to be sick repeatedly

The challenging part of this equation is that many of these changes may occur even if your college student is not using drugs. However, you know them better than anyone, and you’ll likely see the difference. 

Live Sober at The Nook

At The Nook, we focus on lifelong recovery. We offer our clients support to live a life that allows for the maintenance of employment, educational and familial commitments. If your college student struggles with drugs and alcohol, we can provide a living environment that can support them while they pursue their college education.  Contact us today to see how we can help their life in recovery. 

How to Tell if Your Teen Is on Drugs

How to tell if your teen Is on drugs

Parenting, on its best day, is still a demanding job, and that’s even more true during the teenage years. Your child who has always wanted you near them suddenly wants very little to do with you. You have likely become one of the least cool people on the planet without changing a thing about yourself. While all of this may feel awful, the good news is that most of it is entirely normal and developmentally appropriate. It gets more complicated when you start to wonder if typical teenage angst has crossed over into drug use. You may wonder how to tell if your teen is on drugs, and it’s beneficial to arm yourself with information before you start asking questions. You know your child better than anyone else, so if you think something is wrong, start doing the research. At The Nook, we understand the challenges of parenting a teen, whether they are using drugs or not. If your teen is abusing drugs, we are here to support your teen in a drug-free life. 

Common Signs and Symptoms of Drug Use in Teens

Always remember that you know your teen better than anyone. If your gut is telling you that something is wrong, you’re probably correct. Still, if you want to know how to tell if your teen is on drugs, you can look for the common signs and symptoms of drug use. Some signs will be specific to the drug being used. For example, those abusing opioids will have pinpoint pupils. Those using alcohol, marijuana, alcohol, and other depressants may have slurred speech. The cycle of using and withdrawing from drugs may result in your child complaining of flu-like symptoms. You may notice a change in their weight, appetite, or sleeping habits. Additionally, you may note that they have changed their friend circle, have lost interest in activities that they previously enjoyed, or have increased mood swings. Approach the situation like you are putting together a puzzle. Examine all of the pieces objectively and see what comes together. 

How to Get Your Teen Help With Their Drug Addiction

The first step in anyone getting help with drug addiction is acknowledging that there is a problem. As you examine the changes in your teen, you might consider writing down a list of the changes so that you have a starting point to talk to your teen about their drug use. While it is so hard to remain calm, try to talk to your teen in a way that provides them the opportunity to speak openly about their drug use. They may be looking for a way to stop using and not know where to turn. Once you’ve agreed that it’s time to get help, you can explore the different options, including a treatment facility, peer support recovery groups, and sober living. The most appropriate treatment will depend on your teen’s specific drug use, overall health, and other circumstances. 

How The Nook Can Help Your Teen

Navigating the road to sobriety with a teenager can be complex, and a sober living facility may be just what is needed. Depending on the current circumstances, you may want a location closer to your home, or your teen may require a bit of distance. Once you’ve selected a location, you’ll want to look for a sober house that will best support your teen. So, as you explore the options, be sure to look at the requirements for continuous sobriety and the house’s offerings.  Sober living homes located in Los Angeles are located centrally to allow for outings to the beach, to the golf course, to the mountains, and to exploring Los Angeles.  At The Nook, we focus on lifelong recovery. We offer our clients support to live a life that allows for the maintenance of employment, educational, and familial commitments. Contact us today to see how we can support your teen in recovery. 

The Signs of Relapse to Look Out for in Your Loved One

The signs of relapse to look out for in your loved one

Addiction is a heartbreaking disease, and it’s heartbreak is increased by relapse. Sadly, the research has shown that the higher the dependence on drugs, the higher the chance that relapse will occur. If your loved one has relied on drugs and alcohol as their only coping mechanism, the early days of sobriety can be tricky. Using drugs and alcohol as the escape hatch from stress and difficulty is a hard habit to break. Still, those in early recovery may seem just as emotional and moody as someone who has relapsed, so it’s good to know the signs of relapse. If you were there for your loved one’s active addiction, think about the symptoms you saw during their active use and use those as your barometer for what’s happening now. At  The Nook, we know that relapse happens, and we’re here to help. We can be part of the plan to help prevent a relapse or to return from a relapse. 

What Is a Relapse in Addiction Recovery? 

While relapse is simply a return to using drugs and/or alcohol, most who relapse admit that it began long before they used again. Learning how to live without drugs and alcohol isn’t easy. It requires a lot of new skills and practice using those new skills. Whether someone goes to treatment, attends peer support groups, goes to therapy, or completes some combination of therapies, relapse can still happen. Relapse is not a sign of weakness or failure. Sometimes relapse is simply a part of recovery. When someone is learning how to ride a bicycle and falls down, we don’t tell them that they are a failure. We ask them to get back up and try again. Relapse can be thought of as falling off of the bike of sobriety. It may be a sign that different interventions or treatments may need to be investigated, or it just may be a lesson of a life to which someone does not want to return. 

The Signs of Relapse to Look Out For

You know your loved one better than anyone else. You’ve seen them during their active addiction, and you’ve seen them sober. You know the difference, but you still may question what are and are not signs of relapse. As a person on the sidelines of someone else’s recovery, you’re walking a bit of a tightrope as you balance wanting to trust them and wanting to identify relapse. The physical signs of relapse will often depend on the drug being used. For example, a person who uses opioids, such as heroin or fentanyl, exhibits pinpoint pupils and drowsiness. However, a person using stimulants such as cocaine might seem to be moving at a faster speed. Regardless of the drug being used, you’ll likely also see changes in behavior. If your loved one suddenly seems more secretive or has more mood swings, there might be cause for concern. 

Why You Should Go to the Nook for Sober Living

The early days of sobriety can be challenging, and sober living facilities can offer additional support. Sober living homes are the bridge between earlier and more extended sobriety. You’ll want to look for a sober house that will best support your loved ones as they learn to create a sober life.  Sober living homes located in Los Angeles are located centrally to allow for outings to the beach, to the golf course, to the mountains, and to explore Los Angeles.  At The Nook, we focus on lifelong recovery. We offer our clients support to live a life that allows for the maintenance of employment, educational, and familial commitments. Contact us today to see how we can help you or your loved ones create a life in recovery. 

How to Tell If Someone Is an Alcoholic

Perhaps you’ve noticed that your loved one is drinking a bit more often than they used to or drinking more when they do drink. Maybe you’ve seen changes in their personality or their health. Whatever the running list is, you may be asking yourself how to tell if someone is an alcoholic. The truth is that the only one who can determine if someone is an alcoholic is that person. However, you know when something has changed in your loved one’s behavior, and there may be enough signs to warrant a conversation. Here at  The Nook, we understand the difficulty in loving someone who is an alcoholic or addict. We are here to support you and your loved ones as they recover. 

Signs of Alcoholism

Alcoholism is a disease that encompasses more than drinking; it is a disease of mind, body, and spirit. As an outsider looking in, you may notice that your loved one is not happy without being able to have a drink or may need to drink earlier in the day to function. You may also notice that the drinking continues no matter the consequences. Is your loved one facing problems at home, at work, or even in the courts but continuing to drink? These are all ways to tell if someone is an alcoholic. Additionally, if you have tried to talk to them about their drinking and the response has been heated, they may have a problem. 

Beyond the emotional and personality signs, there will be physical signs as well. Are you noticing tremors or shaking hands in the mornings? Is your loved one complaining of not feeling well in the mornings? Are you finding liquor stashed in different spots throughout your home? Alcoholics who discover that they need the alcohol just to get through the day will find places to hide alcohol in an attempt to hide their drinking. Sometimes the first step for you is to observe what is happening objectively. Start a list so that you’ll be able to present the facts when it is time to talk. 

How to Get Someone Help With an Alcohol Addiction

One of the saddest things about addiction and alcoholism is that help usually only works when the person with the problem wants help. You cannot make someone want to get sober. However, you can talk to them about how their addiction or alcoholism affects you and your family. You can set clear boundaries about what behavior you will or will not accept. Finally, you can ask them to get help. If they are interested in getting help, there are many options. As you explore treatment options such as partial hospitalization or intensive outpatient, your loved one might explore peer support recovery groups as a first step. If you are unsure of what treatment facilities are in your area or how to choose one, you can reach out to your family physician for assistance in making decisions. 

How the Nook Helps With Addiction and Recovery

Early recovery often requires additional support, and sober living homes are a great way to get that support. Choosing a sober living facility can be difficult, and there are lots of options. Depending on your current circumstances, you may want a location close to those you know, or you may want to start over in a new place. Once you’ve selected a site, you’ll want to look for a sober house that will best support you. So, as you explore your options, be sure to look at the requirements for continuous sobriety and the house’s offerings.  

Sober living homes located in Los Angeles are located centrally to allow for outings to the beach, to the golf course, to the mountains, and to explore Los Angeles.  At The Nook, we focus on lifelong recovery. We offer our clients support to live a life that allows for the maintenance of employment, educational, and familial commitments. Contact us today to see how we can support your life in recovery. 

How Al-Anon Works

How Al-Anon Works

Being the parent of an addict can be a very lonely place. While a friend brags about their child’s latest academic or athletic achievement, you’re in your head trying to solve your child’s drug addiction. While other parents are planning their children’s summer college tour, you’re looking at drug rehabs. And all the while, you are keeping it all to yourself because of the stigma surrounding addiction. The good news is that there are places you can share what is happening and hear from others in similar situations. That is how Al-Anon works; people who care about others suffering from addiction share their experiences.  At The Nook, we understand how isolating addiction can be, and we’re here to support you and your loved ones. 

What Is Al-Anon?

Al-Anon was founded in 1951 by Lois W., the wife of the founder of Alcoholics Anonymous. The primary purpose of Al‑Anon is to provide support to the friends and families of alcoholics. However, those with a loved one dealing with a loved one’s drug addiction are welcome. Patterned after Alcoholics Anonymous, Al-Anon also has twelve steps, and members can get a sponsor to work the steps if they desire. Al-Anon functions as a peer support group; everyone in attendance has found themselves with a family member facing active alcoholism or active addiction. Meetings are held all over the world, in person and online. Also available is Alateen, founded in 1957 to provide support to teens affected by a loved one’s drinking.

Can Al-Anon Help My Family Deal With Our Child’s Addiction? 

Al-Anon members share their experience, strength, and hope as families who love people active in their alcoholism or addiction. That’s how Al-Anon works. It is a peer support group; all in attendance face similar situations, and no one is an expert. Al-Anon’s purpose is to help members refrain from being consumed by a loved one’s alcoholism or drug addiction. 

Members of Al-Anon support each other to develop ways to cope with a loved one’s alcoholism or addiction. Al-Anon members strive to examine their behaviors concerning their loved one’s alcoholism or addiction. While it’s not anyone’s fault that someone uses drugs and alcohol to cope, your attendance at Al-Anon might help you to find ways to cope with their use. It can be challenging to separate yourself from the drama of their addiction and Al-Anon can help you to do just that. In the same way that an alcoholic or addict is powerless over their drug of choice, you are powerless over their addiction. Accepting this powerlessness is the first step. 

Living Sober at The Nook

Being the parent of a child struggling with drug addiction is heartbreaking and it can be a very lonely experience. When your child is ready to get help with their addiction, sober living may be the most appropriate living situation after rehab until you’re prepared for them to return home. 

Choosing a sober living facility can be overwhelming as there are lots of options available to choose from. Once you’ve selected a location, you’ll want to look for a sober house that will best support your loved one. So, as you explore the options, be sure to look at the requirements for continuous sobriety and the house’s offerings.  

Sober living homes located in Los Angeles are located centrally to allow for outings to the beach, to the golf course, to the mountains, and to explore Los Angeles.  At The Nook, we focus on lifelong recovery. We offer our clients support to live a life that allows for the maintenance of employment, educational, and familial commitments. Contact us today to see how we can support a life in recovery. 

Relapse After Leaving Rehab: The Statistics

One of the saddest aspects of addiction is relapse. It can also be difficult to come to terms with. Addiction is a disease of mind, body, and spirit. Many who suffer from addiction have a history of trauma, co-occurring mental health disorders, or both. So, it’s not surprising that many people relapse after leaving rehab. More than two-thirds of individuals relapse within weeks or months of treatment for substance use disorders. With numbers that high, it is essential to have a relapse prevention plan.  At The Nook, we’d like to be a part of your plan. 

 

General Relapse After Rehab Statistics

The statistics about relapse can be quite frankly, depressing. While many people do recover from addiction, there is a high risk for relapse. Long-term relapse rates are predicted to range from twenty to eighty percent depending on the study. While many past studies have focused on if people relapse after 1 year of sobriety, but more recent research has focused on relapse within the first ninety days. One of the key findings in multiple research studies is a lack of personal and social resources contributes significantly to relapse. Other contributing factors include failing to see your addiction as a genuine problem that must be treated consistently.  In one study, seventy-five percent of patients in an outpatient program had returned to using before even being discharged from the program. 

 

What Are Good Relapse Prevention Strategies?

Knowing that relapse is so common, it is essential as a rehab, sober living, or any other addiction treatment resource, to have a strong relapse prevention program. Perhaps one of the most common sayings in recovery circles is that you don’t have to change anything; you have to change everything – people, places, and things. Most of the changes will be focused on yourself and your coping strategies. In a perfect world, you will leave rehab with a sobriety toolkit that includes meditation, journaling, grounding techniques and more. Sobriety is an inside job, but having peer support is crucial. 

Often when you get sober, you lose the friends that were your ‘using buddies’. Starting over can be difficult. Whether you created a strong support network in rehab or not, you’ll need to build one after rehab. One way to build better support is to regularly attend recovery meetings and build a network of others in recovery.  Rather than just attending meetings because you have to do so, embrace recovery as a part of your life. Residing in a sober living house is another way to shore up the foundation of your recovery.  Depending on your circumstances before rehab, you may not have a home or job to which to return. Sober living can be more than a roof over your head or a place to sleep at night. Sober living facilities also can provide structure, responsibility, and an introduction to life in sobriety. 

 

Why You Should Go to The Nook

The early days of sobriety can be hard, and you may be wondering if you can stay sober. Sober living homes are the bridge between early and longer sobriety. Depending on your current circumstances, you may want a location close to those you know, or you may want to start over in a new place. Once you’ve selected an area, you’ll want to look for a sober house that will best support you.  

Sober living homes located in Los Angeles are located centrally to allow for outings to the beach, to the golf course, to the mountains, and to explore Los Angeles.  At The Nook, we focus on lifelong recovery. We offer our clients support to live a life that allows for the maintenance of employment, educational, and familial commitments. Contact us today to see how we can help your life in recovery!