Holistic Treatments Are Slowly Replacing Painkillers

Holistic Treatments Are Slowly Replacing Painkillers

The widespread toll of the opioid epidemic has served as a wake up call to doctors to be more attentive to the specific needs of each of their clients and seek alternative therapies for relieving pain before prescribing narcotic opioid painkillers. Opioid painkillers like brand names Hydrocodone and Oxycontin are highly addictive and habit forming drugs. Without abusing a prescription, patients become chemically dependent upon the medications for relieving pain. Slowly, they lose their ability to experience pain relief without the medication, except the medication no longer provides pain relief. Instead, the opioid medications have actually compromised the brain’s ability to create pain relief, thereby enhancing the sensitivity to pain. Desperate for pain relief, patients innocently take more than their prescription, or at their pleas, their doctor increases their dosage. A relentless cycle of addiction begins, leading many to heroin, overdose, and death.

Doctors have undergone a true spiritual experience when it comes to the responsibility they bear in treating their patients. Many have seemed to wake up to the idea that other treatments are more beneficial for relieving pain. Doctors have called for prescribing mindfulness, meditation, yoga, and other holistic treatments. Emergency rooms have massage therapists and energy healing practitioners on site to provide relaxation and pain relief. Though the drastic and euphoric effect of opioid painkillers is not quite the same experience for holistic healing treatments, doctors have found that overtime, holistic practices provide recovery. Releasing tension in the body and the mind, holistic healing practices bring a holistic approach to pain. Opioid painkillers do not target specific pain or any emotional underlying issues which might be contributing to physical pain. The mechanism of opioid drugs is to create overall pain relief, which is why the drugs are so powerful and alluring. Newer medications are pain-specific, meaning they target the site of pain and treat that one area. Holistic treatments like acupuncture, massage, yoga, as well as meditation can target specific pain areas and provide healing.

It may not be possible for holistic therapies to completely overtake the popular trend of prescribing opioid painkillers. However, there is a growing movement of awareness and mindfulness when it comes to treating pain. More lives can and will be saved.

If you or a loved one are struggling with opioid addiction, there is help available. At Enlightened Solutions, we approach addiction recovery holistically, providing compassionate care for healing mind, body, and spirit. Call 844-234-LIVE today for more information on our partial care services and programs.

The 5 Best Holistic And Natural Therapies For The Recovering Body And Mind

The 5 Best Holistic And Natural Therapies For The Recovering Body And Mind

Healing mind, body, and spirit requires a mind, body, and spirit approach. Holistic and natural therapies help heal all three areas at once.

  1. Acupressure Massage: The body is full of pressure points which are connected to the natural flow of energy in the body. When activated through pressure, each point releases energetic blockages and releases tension in the muscles. Acupressure massage can be extreme and sometimes extremely painful. However, the benefits are tremendous for mind, body, and spirit. Releasing toxins and blocked energy helps clear the mind and detoxifies the body. Emotional processing is common with acupressure, helping to heal the spirit.

  2. Acupuncture: Acupuncture is a proven treatment for recovery. Similar to acupressure, acupuncture works with specific channels, meridians, and points of energy throughout the body. Each acupuncture point, activated by the insertion of a small needle, connects to the function of a major organ, which has importance in emotional and energetic regulation. Acupuncture can release muscles and energy, helpful for relieving aches and pains. In addition, acupuncture can help with sleeplessness and stress in addition to detoxifying the body and creating deep relaxation.

  3. Aromatherapy: Essential oils can be used for healing in many different ways, all of which are considered to be part of aromatherapy. Just putting a dab of essential oils on specific pressure points like the wrists or the temples can be therapeutic. Inhaling the scent of essential oils has numerous properties for the mind, body, and spirit. Lavender can be calming in times of stress, while citrus sells can be uplifting. Eucalyptus is helpful in clearing the nose, the chest, and detoxifying the body from illness.

  4. Hydrotherapy: Whether in a hydromassage chamber or standing in a hot shower, spending time being touch by water is healing for the body and the mind. Our natural pH levels align with water. Water helps relax our bodies, our minds, our muscles, and our joints simultaneously. Soaking in a jacuzzi or a tub, washing the face, or taking a plunge in a pool are all healing forms of hydrotherapy.

  5. Massage: Massage has become a common healing modality offered in treatment centers for addicts and alcoholics in recovery. Healing touch is soothing and therapeutic for those who have experienced abuse and trauma. By releasing tension in the muscles, it becomes easier to focus on the mental work of therapy and release the pain of detox.

Holistic healing and natural alternative healing remedies are essential for fully recovering the mind, body, and spirit. At Enlightened Solutions we conjoin the best of holistic care with clinically proven therapy and spiritual healing. Call us today for information on our partial care programs and recovery services. 844-234-LIVE.


 

Depression In The Technological Age

Depression In The Technological Age

Clinical depression has found new technological sources for triggers and catalysts towards worsening conditions as a result.

Social Media Depression

Social media has been consistently linked to higher rates of depression, low self-esteem, and poor body image. Seeking an escape from depression can lead to spending excess amounts of time engaged in social media. Unfortunately, engaging with digital versions of people is not the same as engaging with real people. Isolation can be a complicated part of depression as someone wants to be connected with other people but feels it is impossible to do so. Getting lost in social media might not even include engaging with others. Instead, hours are lost to mindlessly scrolling through other’s profiles, groups, or just a news feed. Detached from reality, detached from the self, and detached from others, social media can worsen depression.

Sleep Depression

Until recently, the main prescription for a healthy amount of sleep was a minimum of 6 hours to healthy 8 hours. Now, doctors are warning that Americans especially are low on sleep. A lack of sleep can become a greater and greater problem over time. 8 hours is the new minimum amount of sleep, with 9-10 hours being the prime amount of time in deep REM sleep open could be able to get. Anything over ten hours could greatly upset the natural circadian rhythm. Oversleeping is a common side effect of depression as energy is low and fatigue is easy to come by. Too much sleep deprives the body of essential nutrients it needs from the sun, energy the body needs from movement, and food the body needs from getting up to et. Though sleep is essential and is good for the body to heal, it can be detrimental when the body is struggling with depression. Trying to cope with daily stress of working with phones, computers, and other technology, in addition to the stress of depression, or other emotional stress can be taxing. Spending off hours or weekend days, any extra time, sleeping is not coping with a problem but avoiding it. The combination of excess sleep and stuffing painful emotions can create or worsen a depression.

Problematically, depression is often co-occurring with substance abuse. Turning to substances to cope with depression can lead to a dual diagnosis issue. If you or a loved one are in need of healing from depression and co-occurring substance abuse issues, call Enlightened Solutions today. Our partial care programs bring together the best of clinical therapy, holistic healing, and 12 step philosophy. For more information, call us today at 844-234-LIVE.

 

MDMA Addiction: 3 Signs

MDMA Addiction: 3 Signs

The popular club drug, commonly known as ecstasy, is highly addictive and can be extremely harmful when abused. If you are concerned you or a loved one are struggling with MDMA addiction, look for these signs.

  1. Change In Mental Health: MDMA is a mix of many different drugs unless it is pure, which is rare. In the brain, MDMA interacts with different chemicals, producing an array of reactions. Primarily, MDMA interacts with serotonin, which is a brain chemical which helps regulate emotion. Creating extremely high states of pleasure and euphoria can create a deficit after using MDMA. Many normal users in addition to addicts describe a “come down” period where they are severely depressed. Thoughts as though they may never feel the pleasure and happiness they felt while under the influence of MDMA are common. Overtime, at addictive and abusive levels of use, this depression can last long term. As the brain becomes increasingly dependent upon MDMA for producing chemical reactions of happiness, pleasure, and joy, it becomes unable to produce these sensations on its own.

  2. Physical Health Problems: MDMA is an amphetamine and a stimulant, similar to cocaine. The reason MDMA is a popular club drug is because of the way it creates high amounts of energy for dancing and partying for days on end. Like other amphetamines and stimulants, MDMA can cause health problems in the heart. A constantly racing heart rate can cause hyperventilation. Problematically, in the club, rave, and music festival environment, there is a high amount of heat. MDMA can raise body temperature, in addition to all of the dancing and the close proximity of many warm bodies. Becoming severely dehydrated is a dangerous side effect of MDMA which can lead to muscle tension, dizziness, and immediate issues in the kidneys. Long term kidney damage can cause serious health complications. Lastly, MDMA can cause a problem with dental health. Clenching and grinding teeth is common under the influence of MDMA. Jaw problems, teeth health, neck, and headache issues can result.

  3. Cravings For MDMA/Experience Of MDMA: A sign of any addiction is experiencing cravings for a drug when not under the influence of that drug. Because the experience of being under the influence of MDMA is so emotionally strong, many people find they don’t just crave the drug itself but the entire experience of being on MDMA in any environment. As a result, life might become second in priority to spending time with people who take with MDMA, going to clubs, raves, parties, festivals, or other environments which support it.

MDMA addiction shouldn’t be overlooked. Many have lost their lives or suffered severe and permanent health damages due to the abuse of MDMA. If you are struggling with club drug addiction, call Enlightened Solutions today. Our continuum of partial care programs bring together the best of scientific and holistic healing. For more information call 844-234-LIVE.

Do Both Men And Women Face Body Image Issues?

Do Both Men And Women Face Body Image Issues?

Body image is widely popularized as a specifically female problem. Citing the high standards of the fashion industry, an entire commodity marketplace focused on beauty, and the objectification of males, the female from falls under a lot of scrutiny. However, the female-identified body is not the only target of scrutinous eyes. The male-identified body also receives high expectations. Pressure to be strong, muscular, lean, sculpted, and more, make up the male body image standard to which many men feel they cannot compare.

Body image issues are not restricted to anyone gender. They also don’t discriminate based on race, age, socioeconomic background, or fashion choice. Body image issues can spring from unseens pressures and obvious ones. For example, receiving commentary in childhood about body, weight, and beauty can create skewed beliefs about the way one looks. Misinformed ideologies about what it means to be a “woman” or be a “man” can cause someone to feel like they aren’t “woman” or “man” enough, forever changing the way that they view themselves.

Social environments and culture during adolescence can contribute to body image issues in both males and females. Being around growing and developing bodies in puberty highlights how different each body can be. As young minds are expanding, they are also being inundated with targeted advertising, telling them how they should look, what defines how they look, and how they should feel if they don’t look that way. Typically in adolescent social settings, social circles are categorized where those who are considered “beautiful” receive more attention. Those who might have body types which differ from the “norm” can be bullied, gossiped about, and ridicules, leading to lifelong insecurities.

Throughout adulthood, the security one feels about their body can be threatened. Ending relationships, sexual rejection, sexual trauma, and other factors can contribute to a sudden insecurity about one’s body and one’s self. Both men and women are vulnerable to hearing the wrong message and developing a harmful belief about how they look.

Too often, body image issues lead to disordered eating and exercise behaviors, causing an unhealthy obsession in the way one regards their image. To cope with the emotional pain of rejection and insecurity, both men and women turn to drugs and alcohol. Co-occurring addiction and body image issues are common in men and women. Thankfully, recovery does not discriminate either. There is a solution. Healing is possible.

If you are struggling with body image issues and have turned to drugs and alcohol to cope, there is hope in recovery. At Enlightened Solutions, we bring together the best of clinical therapy, holistic healing, and 12 step philosophy to help clients heal mind, body, and spirit. For information on our partial care programs, call us today at 844-234-LIVE.

Are These 3 Common Habits Worsening Your Mental Health?

Are These 3 Common Habits Worsening Your Mental Health?

Managing mental health is essential for managing recovery. Relapse is often caused by neglecting our mental health needs through the development of unhealthy habits. Thanks to our practices of mindfulness, we can be aware of when it feels like our mental health is struggling, then notice what habits might be causing the distress. Here are three of the most common habits which might be weighing you down.

  1. Your Phone Is Causing You Stress: There are many ways our phones are causing stress, aside from the fact that we use them too often. We might be getting too many phone calls, which is causing us to be more anxious. On the other hand, we might not be getting any phone calls, which is causing is to be more depressed. You’re either checking social media too often, or you are completely disconnected from others. Technology has provided us with a platform for connecting to others, yet that constant connection, or lack of connection, can be overwhelming. Finding a balance of interaction with the phone is essential. Respond to calls and texts with a short canned response. When you’re lonely, reach out to others. Create fulfilling and enriching habits like reading, exercising, and hobbies which distract you from the distraction of your phone.

  2. You Don’t Have A Routine: In recovery, routine is everything. During treatment, you get used to having a strict routine, dictated by other people. Your routine helps you to know what is coming next, organize your time, and most importantly, schedule time for self-care. Without a proper routine, you’re missing out on some of the most important parts of your day. Most likely, they are the parts which help you meet your needs. Going an extended period of time without getting your needs met can cause serious emotional distress. Until you find a remedy and start putting some of your tools into practice, you run the risk of relapse.

  3. You Consume Too Much Caffeine: Stimulant substances are highly recommended in the beginning of recovery. There’s a reason most AA and NA meetings include coffee and doughnuts or other treats. After the initial detox period has worn off, there is a time for consuming caffeine and time for not consuming caffeine. Being “high” on caffeine can cause you anxiety and make coping with life feel more stressful. Coming down off of caffeine can leave your depressed and deprived of natural energy. Switch up your caffeine habit by drinking first caffeinated teas, then switching to herbal teas. Opt for natural sweeteners instead of sugar.


There is a solution for drug and alcohol addiction. At Enlightened Solutions, we are showing our clients how to live a healthy and holistic lifestyle of recovery. For information on our partial care programs, call us today at 844-234-LIVE.

10 Signs You Need Treatment For An Alcohol Problem

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How big of a problem is your alcohol problem? If you’re concerned your problem with drinking might be big enough to warrant a trip to treatment to teach you how to live sober and help you heal, chances are, it’s a big enough problem. You are not alone. Alcohol use disorder affects millions of people around the world. Unfortunately, not all of them reach out and ask for help. Making the call to go to treatment can save your life. Alcoholism is progressive- it always gets worse, it won’t get better. Problematically, many become convinced that their problem hasn’t reached the worst it can reach. With alcoholism, there’s never any telling how bad bad will have to be. Accidental death, injurious accident, and liver failure can happen at any time due to alcohol abuse. If you aren’t sure, here are 10 signs you need to seek treatment for an alcohol problem.

  1. You’ve tried to make deals with yourself to only drink one or two drinks when you start to drink but you can never uphold your promise. Once you have one drink, it is impossible to stop. You either don’t realize you’ve continued drinking or you find yourself creating justifications for it until you are drunk again.

  2. After the urgent suggestion of friends, family, and even your doctor, you have tried to reduce your drinking to just once or twice a week. Similar to your attempts to control your drinking when you do drink, you are unable to drink controllably.

  3. You’ve found that when you do manage to take a break from drinking you experience strong cravings, urges, and impulses to drink. You notice alcohol everywhere and find it challenging to say no.

  4. Your ability to fulfill life’s responsibilities and be present in your relationship is affected by your drinking.

  5. Your life activities which have had the most meaning to you have taken a backseat to your drinking. You’re either hungover, already drunk, or planning to drink- because if you don’t drink you might experience symptoms of withdrawal.

  6. When you go without drinking you experience cravings in addition to symptoms of withdrawal. The withdrawal might be mild or severe, ranging from shaky hands, to getting the sweats, to experiencing seizures or becoming sick without alcohol.

  7. You have more than one story about getting into trouble, getting hurt, breaking the law, or engaging in other reckless activities when you were drunk.

  8. During a blackout episode, you have engaged in drug use which you weren’t aware of at the time.

  9. You experience blackouts more regularly. Once you start drinking, you are not sure when you will blackout.

  10. Despite negative consequences, you have continued to drink.


Recovery from alcoholism is possible. Make the life changing decision today by calling Enlightened Solutions. Bringing holistic healing, clinical therapy, and 12 step philosophy together, our partial care programs health alcoholism and co-occurring issues in mind, body, and spirit. For more information, call 844-234-LIVE.

Can Benzodiazepine Dependency Be Replaced With Alternative Therapies?

Can Benzodiazepine Dependency Be Replaced With Alternative Therapies?

Can Benzodiazepine Dependency Be Replaced With Alternative Therapies?

Benzodiazepines are strong depressant drugs prescribed primarily for treating anxiety. Sometimes used for sleep, as needed for flying, or as a daily drug for anxiety, these medications create an intense chemical dependency. Unfortunately, few doctors are aware of how severe chemical dependency on benzodiazepines can be. Advertised as non-habit forming and non-dependency forming, most patients taking benzodiazepines are unaware of the fact that they have become dependent upon the drug. It is not until they for some reason miss their daily dose that they are confronted with the reality of chemical dependency by way of symptoms of withdrawal and cravings. Tolerance is also common in benzodiazepine use. Overtime, a patient develops a tolerance to their medication and needs the dosage increased. Problematically, the more a dosage is increased, the higher the tolerance threshold becomes, and the more severe a chemical dependency can be.

These are the issues faced just by those who use the drug regularly as prescribed by their psychiatrist. Xanax is a brand name benzodiazepine which wise widely abused. Abused for its depressant properties, Xanax can create euphoric sensations in addition to deep physical relaxation. Called “sticks” or “bars”, Xanax purchased on the street poses a specific threat. Recently, there have been reports that opioids like heroin and fentanyl have been cut into pills being sold as Xanax. Though those who abuse Xanax don’t necessarily have anxiety problems, they can develop them when they withdraw.

 

Replacing the presence of benzodiazepines is necessary for full recovery and developing a lifestyle of sobriety. Anxiety can be managed through numerous alternative treatments and lifestyle changes without the use of heavy depressant drugs like Xanax.

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy: CBT is a proven therapy method which targets problematic behaviors and seeks to uncover the problematic beliefs behind them. Challenging troublesome thought processes helps create lasting changes in behavior, removing the need for dependency on benzodiazepines.

  • Diet: Removing stimulant substances from the body helps better regulate emotion and energy which can reduce anxiety.

  • Exercise: Exercise is a proven way to reduce stress and anxiety. 20-30 minutes of physical activity a day can be extremely effective.

  • Mindfulness and meditation: Both mindfulness and meditation have been proven to reduce the stressful effects of anxiety and other mental health issues. Only 5 minutes a day of meditation can be impactful on reducing the need to turn to benzodiazepines.

Enlightened Recovery Solutions offers dual diagnosis treatment for addiction and co-occurring anxiety through partial care programs after 30 day residential inpatient. Bringing together the best of holistic healing, clinical therapy, and alternative treatment, we strive to create healing in mind, body, and spirit. Call 844-234-LIVE for more information.


 

Summer Is Here! 10 Ways To Bring Your Recovery Into Summer

Summer Is Here! 10 Ways To Bring Your Recovery Into Summer

June 21st marks the summer solstice when the days officially get longer, the sun shines brighter, and all that glorious summer energy is alive. Summertime is a great time to be sober, just like every other time of year. Outdoor activities, recovery bonding, special meetings- it’s time to celebrate being alive and being sober for another summer season.

  1. Make The Most Of Being Outside: Open the windows, draw back the blinds, and get outside. The extended daylight hours of summertime can combat those long winter blues and replenish the body. All the extra Vitamin D and Vitamin C will do wonders for your mental health by boosting positive moods and hormones. Don’t forget your sunscreen.

  2. Attend Summer-Specific Meetings: Summer time means the weather is warmer for longer. In many areas, the summertime means unique meetings which only happen during the summertime. Bonfires on the beach at sunset, hilltop hike meetings, and more only come one season a year.

  3. Attend Summer Recovery Parties: Everyone is enjoying the sunshine and the gift of being alive another summer. However, summertime can be triggering. Many spent summers getting loaded on the beach or staying trapped in doors, imprisoned by an addiction. Many AA groups host summer barbecues, beach days, and events. Spending time with peers cooking food, playing games, and enjoying the day is good for the soul.

  4. Start A New Hobby: Starting a new hobby can be a boost for self-esteem. Summer is the perfect time to pick up outdoor hobbies like swimming, surfing, hiking, running, or gardening. Whatever new activity sounds interesting, give it a shot. You’ll be spontaneous, increase your confidence in yourself, and build neuroplasticity while learning something new.

  5. Cook For The Season: Recovery is mind, body, and spirit. Part of attending to the needs of the holistic self is feeding it healthy food. Experiencing cooking is enhanced by cooking for the season. Walk through a local farmer’s market or grocer to find out what’s in season near you. Look up summer recipes for that crop and create something delicious.

Life has seasons of change. Recovery is constant among them. At Enlightened Solutions, we’re showing clients how to develop a spiritual lifestyle of recovery for a lifetime. For information on our partial care programs, call us today at 844-234-LIVE.

Navigating Difficult People, Not Difficult Situations, In Recovery

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In recovery, we are taught to live life on life’s terms. Yet, we are rarely taught to live life on people’s terms. People are difficult. Life presents us difficult people. A good situation can turn into a difficult situation when we are dealing with difficult people. Recovery in our lives puts us at both an advantage and a disadvantage for dealing with difficult people.

The Recovery Advantage

Compassion and empathy have been shown to us since the beginning of our recovery. We have been shown the way for understanding that difficult people go through or have gone through difficult things. After all, not too long ago, and probably sometime soon, we have been difficult ourselves. Love and tolerance is our code, we are taught through the rooms of Alcoholics Anonymous and other programs. Tolerating others while continuing to love them regardless of who they are is something we learn in recovery. However, it is often easier said than done.

The Recovery Disadvantage

Learning to love and tolerate others has been the result of learning to love and tolerate ourselves. We have a common saying in recovery, if you spot it, you’ve got it. Developing an attitude of gratitude, being kind toward others, and maintaining peace in our lives has taken great work. Our lives were in the worst place they had ever been. Through hard work we pulled ourselves out and made the changes. We can’t know what anyone else is going through. As a result we tend to make judgments. It couldn’t be worse than living with a life-threatening addiction or a mental health disorder! How worse or not worse the cause behind someone’s tendency toward being difficult is doesn’t matter. Cultivating empathy and practicing compassion continues to be key

Here are three suggestions for navigating a difficult person in another wise not difficult situation.

  1. Be Kind: Sometimes all a difficult person needs is the loving-kindness of an understanding stranger. Rather than be averse, show them the same kindness and patience which has been shown to you so many times.

  2. Bring Peace: We cannot resolve every situation by being a peacemaker. What we can be is peaceful, which tends to have a peaceful effect. Bring the peace by not creating conflict out of difficulty.

  3. Surrender Control: being right, proving a point, showing someone how difficult they are- these are all wasted efforts for the sake of trying to be in control. We cannot control every difficult person we encounter. We can’t control any of them. Radical acceptance is the practice of embracing the totality of what is, as it is.


Learning to live is the reason we get sober. At Enlightened Solutions, we are showing clients how to live a peaceful, holistic lifestyle. Our programs seek to heal mind, body, and spirit by bringing together the best of alternative healing, holistic therapy, and clinical treatment. For more information, call 844-234-LIVE.

Need Something New For Self-Care? Take An Adult Bath

Need Something New For Self-Care? Take An Adult Bath

Bath time is dreaded by many children- until they get in. Submerged in the warm water, surrounded by beloved bathtime toys, and receiving the loving touch of a doting parent helps children relax before bedtime. Science has proven that being submerged in water changes body chemistry and balances pH levels, causing relaxation. As adults, bathtime becomes a luxury for which there is rarely time, unless at a spa. Reader’s Digest suggests that taking an adult bath is exactly what is needed for total restoration.

Stress is a chronic problem, particularly when you’re living with an addiction or mental health disorder. Managing stress is essential for emotional regulation, keeping the body healthy, and maintaining focus on recovery. During a bath, focusing on relaxation is all that can happen. Otherwise, you’re just simmering in stress- literally. Instead, bath time can be a private time for self-care.

Self-care is a critical concept in recovery from addiction and co-occurring disorders. Taking time for self-care is the way you show yourself the same tender, loving care a parent shows a toddler in the bath. Instead of rubber duckies and Johnson’s baby shampoo, though there may be a time, there are other ways to enhance a bath time to rejuvenate mind, body, and spirit. Incorporating an adult bath into a self-care regime is healing for mind, body, and spirit.

How to bring together recovery and bath time? Here are some suggestions:

  • Practicing alone time and practicing self-care aren’t always synonymous. Make bath time one of the ways you practice being alone with yourself. Turn off your phone, shut the door, and mark your calendar as busy.

  • Since you aren’t bringing a glass of wine or champagne into a bath, bring another delicious beverage. Try making a tea which blends together relaxing herbs like chamomile and lavender with vanilla. Add a squeeze of lemon to help the body detoxify as it sweats in the warm water and a drizzle of honey for luxurious sweetness.

  • Use aromatherapy to enhance the senses and promote relaxation. Put a few drops of essential oils into the bath. Light scented candles or an incense. Turn on an aromatherapy diffuser in the room so you can breathe it in with every inhale.

  • If you feel like meditating, practice a mindfulness body scanning technique in which you become aware of the way the water is surrounding your body and offering you relaxation.

  • If you don't’ feel like meditating, bring an inspiring book with you. Doing recovery “homework” in the bath might not be relaxing. Reading inspirational books about spirituality, personal stories of recovery, and healing from mental health disorders will energize you as your bath relaxes you.


Enlightened Solutions brings together the best of holistic healing, alternative therapy, 12 step philosophy, and clinical treatment. Our partial care programs for dual diagnosis addiction and mental health disorders help clients grow along spiritual lines. Start your recovery with us by calling 844-234-LIVE.

The Real Effect Of Seasonal Affective Disorder On Mental Health

The Real Effect Of Seasonal Affective Disorder On Mental Health

Spring should be sprung all over the country, yet persistent climate changes have kept the weather glum. April showers bring May flowers, but May has been gray and June gloom awaits in many areas. Long lasting winter and dark weather can have an affect on mental health with the very real seasonal affective disorder, a form of depression.

The Reach Of SAD

According to The Independent which wrote extensively on the way sunlight deprivation is experienced around the world, “Seasonality is reported by approximately 10 to 20 per cent of people with depression and 15 to 22 percent of those with bipolar disorder.” Those with preexisting mental health disorders prone to periods of sadness and depression are not the only ones to experience SAD. “Even healthy people who have no seasonal problems seem to experience this low-amplitude change over the year, with worse mood and energy during autumn and winter and an improvement in spring and summer,” the article explains.

What Causes SAD

Winter time, or a prolonged season of winter-like days can be draining in physical and mental health. Most fingers point to the way a lack of sunlight messes with the body’s natural circadian clock. Our circadian rhythm is what helps us wake up in the morning and be tired by nightfall. In a normal 24 hour cycle, we have a natural programming for when to be asleep. Constant lack of sunlight mimics the nighttime and causes the circadian cycle to become confused. Should we be awake or asleep? During winter months specifically, daylight hours are shorter. Instead of being overcast and cloudy, the days are filled with dark. The effect can be the same for extended seasons full of gloom and rain covering the skies. The Independent explains that this theory is called the “phase-shift hypothesis” which points to melatonin. Melatonin is a naturally occurring hormone which helps the body feel that circadian-scheduled sleepiness. Too much darkness, or, too little sunshine, can produce too much melatonin, causing more drowsiness, and sleepiness, which can lead to feelings of depression and lethargy.

Remedies For SAD

  • Take a high dose of Vitamin D for sunshine nutrients

  • Go to a tanning salon to get doses of UVA and UVB rays

  • Get lots of exercise to keep the body’s energy running

  • Use the down time for reflection, reading, and growth


Coping with long periods of the blues often leads people to fill their time with drugs and alcohol. If you experience difficulty coping with the phases of life and turn to substances to cope, there is help available. Call Enlightened Solutions today for information on our partial care programs for dual diagnosis addiction and mental health disorders. 844-234-LIVE.

Taking Time For Spiritual Healing Changes Your Brain, Changes Your Life

Taking Time For Spiritual Healing Changes Your Brain, Changes Your Life

Treatment for drug and alcohol addiction as well as co-occurring mental health issues are often criticized for being too much like a spa or a treat. Alternative treatment methods like acupuncture, massage, and reiki, with yoga classes, meditation, organic meals, and more, sound like a vacation more than work. Treatment programs offer all these healing therapies as supplement to the intense and often exhausting clinical therapy taking place. Recovering from drug and alcohol addiction takes time on a spiritual journey. Full service treatment programs which offer multiple forms of spiritual healing are successful because they provide a retreat for the spirit. After years of abuse, running from the past, and neglecting needs, each client is in need of a deep healing and spiritual transformation. What brings an addict or alcoholic to treatment is considerable compared to what might inspire people to attend a spiritual retreat or spa vacation. Restoration of the mind, body, and spirit, feels life changing. According to Bustle, it truly is life-changing because it can change the brain.

Published in Religion, Brain & Behavior the study is possible the first of its kind to examine the effects of taking a spiritual retreat on the structure of the brain. Studying the neurophysiological effects of spirituality is becoming a more popular field in science as people increasing lean toward the spiritual rather than the scientific.

Participants, aged 24 to 76, attended a 7 day spiritual retreat which had Christian ties. Using clinical scales and questionnaires, the participants were interviewed before the retreat as well as a week after. A brain scan was also conducted before and after.

The retreat included hours of meditation, personal reflection, prayer, mass, and working with a personal spiritual mentor. After the retreat, participants felt less tension and fatigue in their lives, while expressing feeling more spiritual beliefs than they did before. As for the neuroimaging, there was “a drop of between 5 to 8 percent in dopamine and serotonin binding, meaning that even more of these feel-good chemicals could be accessed by the brain.” Both serotonin and dopamine are associated with happiness, emotion, mood, and even spirituality.

Creating spiritual meaning in life is essential for addiction recovery. The twelve steps of Alcoholics Anonymous are called a spiritual program of living, where one can grow along spiritual lines. Finding a spiritual healing in recovery creates purpose and meaning, while reducing the painful effects of addiction. Research has proven that physical pain is registered as more intense depending on the negative mood someone is in. Spirituality changes the way the brain regulates positive emotions, helping clients become more resilient to emotional pain, physical pain, and the pain life can sometimes cause. Spirituality in treatment isn’t about retreat, it’s about stepping fully into life, clean and sober.

 

Enlightened Solutions brings together traditional clinical treatment with holistic alternative therapy and 12 step philosophy. Healing mind, body, and spirit, we strive to show clients how to start their recovery as a new way of life. For more information, call us today at 844-234-LIVE.

Treatment For Addiction And Mental Health Should Be A Blend Of Eastern And Western Medicine

Treatment For Addiction And Mental Health Should Be A Blend Of Eastern And Western Medicine

People are turning toward naturopathic, alternative, homeopathic medicines and treatments for a reason: Western medicine isn’t working. Finding a balance between eastern practices and western practices is bringing people to a holistic state of healing in which they find they are healing mind, body, and spirit. Western medicine largely focuses on the symptoms, rather than the core of the problem. Eastern medicine is more preventative, focusing on the core of the issue. Much of eastern medicine is spiritually connected, working under the philosophy that emotions are energy and emotional energy has the capacity to make us sick. Living a healthy and balanced lifestyle has to include balance for emotions and the spirit. Medications, tests, and examinations in western medicine tend to lead to an answer of “stress” and needing to get rid of whatever is causing stress. Eastern practices have the ability to pinpoint the cause of stress.

Acupuncture, for example, can identify emotional energy blockages by working with the body’s acupressure points. Massage can find tension in the muscles and release them, often releasing emotional energy. Essential oils can be calming, invigorating, grounding, and releasing. Crystals tend to only have effect when their specific energy and attributes are necessary, highlighting what the problem might be. Not reacting to rose quartz? Your heart is probably doing fine. Feeling a tingle or some kind of draw to obsidian? You might have some issues from the past to work out.

A blend of both kinds of medicine is necessary because Eastern medicine can sometimes fall short in the western body. Treatment for addiction and alcoholism as well as other mental health issues has to be taken seriously in its holistic approach. How many oils would it take to balance depression and anxiety which are becoming a clinical issue? Should cravings be considered an emotional issue or warrant a prescription for drugs like Naltrexone? The goal in treatment is to make clients comfortable, help them relax, heal them, and show them how to live a fully sober life in recovery. Balancing east and west is a primary example of doing so.


At Enlightened Recovery Solutions, we’re bringing together the best of clinical therapy, holistic healing, and 12 step philosophy. Recovery starts with you. Start your recovery with us. For information on our integrative programs for partial care, call us today at 844-234-LIVE.

Why Is Sound Therapy Effective For Addiction Treatment?

Why Is Sound Therapy Effective For Addiction Treatment?

Sound therapy is one of many alternative treatment methods which can be used during treatment for addiction, alcoholism, and co-occurring mental health disorders.

How Does Sound Therapy Work?

Sound therapy can be conducted through different mediums of producing sound. Traditional sound therapy uses a variety of instruments like chimes, drums, gongs, and tuning forks. Modern sound therapy utilizes electronic sound and computer technology to create specific rhythms, patterns and frequencies. The primary function of sound healing is using vibrations to create change and healing in the mind and the body, thereby helping the spirit heal. For example, some electronic sound therapy mimics the primordial sounds we experience in the womb as we are carried by our mothers during pregnancy. Such ambient sounds can be relaxing and conjure a sense of calm, safety, and protection.

Why Does Sound Therapy Work?

Specifics of sound therapy have not been deeply researched on a scientific level. According to

The News Minute, there are different theories. Physical vibrations from instruments or a “sound bed” cause vibrations in the physical body which encourages relaxation and pain relief or release of tension. Sound waves interact with brain waves, which is how we hear and create meaning out of what we hear. Sounds have different frequencies, which can cause different frequencies in the brain. A more simple theory suggests that ambient sounds are simply relaxing and being immersed in sound for an extended period of time causes deep relaxation. More complicated theories include Pythagorean formulae and complicated tonal systems which are complex and specific to the need of healing.

What Is The Connection Between Sound Therapy And Addiction Treatment?

Addiction lives in the mind, the body, and the spirit. During treatment, the body is in the earliest stages of recovering from addiction. Toxic energy lives inside of the joints and muscles which inhibit full recovery. Additionally, there is a lot of stress in early recovery due to withdrawal, coping with emotions, and working through cravings. Sound therapy helps neutralize the brain, stimulate healing in the body, and create a much needed sense of relaxation.

Enlightened Solutions has witnessed the transformative and healing effect of holistic healing and spiritual wellness in addiction treatment. Our partial care programs for dual diagnosis integrate healing, clinical therapy, and 12 step philosophy. For more information on how we are helping clients find lifelong recovery, call us today at 844-234-LIVE.

How Do You Regulate Your Emotions?

How Do You Regulate Your Emotions?

Emotional regulation can often be the difference between staying sober and relapsing. Learning to live with your emotions is key to long term recovery.

You turn to others

When you feel your emotions come up, you turn to others for support, comfort, and clarity. You get by with a little help from your friends when your song just isn’t quite in tune. Turning to others for help and support is a healthy emotional regulation technique. Look out for warning signs of dependency. If you always turn to others and can’t emotionally think for yourself that can lead to problems in moments when you’re alone and nobody can be reached. Recovery is about developing independence.

You self-medicate

Almost every addict and alcoholic is guilty of self-medicating. You turn to external substances, of any kind, to “deal” with your emotions. Unfortunately, self-medication isn’t a healthy coping technique. It means you avoid your feelings, or, believe that your feelings are only supported through outside substances. In treatment, many people are surprised when they realize just how much they depended on outside substance to deal with almost everything in their lives, good and bad.

You’re all about acceptance

Life happens, right? There’s no need to worry about it! It was what it was, it is what it is, and it will be what it will be. Maintaining this kind of attitude to regulate emotions is healthy to an extent. Too much acceptance can be a form of avoidance. We can both accept things and have feelings about them at the same time. Acceptance doesn’t mean not feeling. It means accepting your feelings as well.

You don’t really feel much

You’re well known for “shutting down” and even using statements like “I just shut down.” When emotions come flaring up your mind goes into code red lockdown. Windows are shut. Steel doors are drawn. You go incognito. Unbeknownst to you, your stealth mode is not so stealthy. Emotional shutdown is noticeable and affects everyone.

You overthink everything, all the time

Ruminating thoughts, chronic analysis, and loop thinking are ways to try and make sense of emotion rather than feel emotion. You’re trying to find the right thing to feel which makes the most sense instead of authentically being present with what you’re really feeling.


You can learn to live with your emotions in a healthy and authentic way. Recovery is a promise beyond just quitting drugs and alcohol. Enlightened Solutions wants to take you on your journey to transformative healing. Call us today for information on our integrative partial care programs for dual diagnosis substance use and secondary mental health disorders. 844-234-LIVE.

Are You Codependent?

Are You Codependent?

Recovering from codependency and codependent tendencies can feel as difficult as recovering from drug addiction and alcoholism. Letting go of lifetime behaviors and survival techniques is hard, but it is not impossible. You can have loving and healthy relationships. Are you codependent? See if you resonate with any of these descriptions:

  • You feel that if you don’t meet the needs of others you will be abandoned, rejected, abused, or neglected

  • As a result, you value the needs and wants of others over your own

  • Sometimes, the way you prioritize other people over yourself can lead to problems in your relationships and responsibilities

  • You feel like you cannot escape the cycle of trying to control, manipulate, care-take, and be overbearing in relationships. Once it starts causing problems, you feel as though it gets worse.

  • You either have poor boundaries or don’t set any boundaries when it comes to other people. You’re willing to let someone completely into your life and insert yourself completely into someone else’s. You’re often tired and feel like you have lost your sense of self.

  • You constantly dismiss your own thoughts, opinions, desires, wants, and needs as though they are unimportant and bothersome to other people. It’s possible you believe they are unimportant because you believe that you are unimportant.

  • Your life is full of obligations and responsibilities which drain you of your time, energy, and spirit. You are constantly in a state of giving, care taking, and managing. Frequently, you find yourself burned out and feeling resentful towards others. Eventually, you take on responsibilities from others just to be mad at them because you don’t feel there is any other way.

  • There is a good chance you’re in a relationship with an addict, an alcoholic, someone with narcissistic personality disorder, another codependent, or in some other kind of dysfunctional relationship.

  • You likely grew up in a home with someone who was abusive, neglectful, or who abandoned you and also suffered with an untreated mental health disorder.

  • You likely have a mental health disorder of your own, outside of your codependency.

  • Deep down, you feel that if you can just do enough, be enough, and please other people they won’t leave or hurt you.


Enlightened Recovery Solutions knows that there is freedom and serenity in recovery. It starts with you. Start your recovery with us. We integrate the best of holistic healing, spiritual wellness, clinically proven therapy, and 12 step philosophy. For more information, call us today at 844-234-LIVE.

Does Mindfulness Work For Reducing Anxiety?

Does Mindfulness Work For Reducing Anxiety?

Anxiety has little to do with being in the present moment other than spending that present moment worrying about the future. Getting caught up in anxious thoughts feels like getting lost in an uncontrollable stream of worry, concern, and fear over things which might not even be real. Millions of people live with anxiety and co-occurring disorders like addiction or alcoholism but do not receive treatment. Each day, they live under the rule of their anxiety, which takes a toll physically, mentally, and spiritually.

Recently, Brigham Young University conducted a study on anxiety and the effect of mindfulness in reducing anxiety. Mindfulness helps those with anxiety accomplish three important states. First, it helps them focus on the present moment. Second, it returns them to their breath. Third, it helps them get in touch with their true emotions. “People who are not aware of ‘moment-to-moment experience’ many times void difficult emotions,” the article explains, “This behavior leads to negative thoughts.” It can also lead to a heightened heart rate, rapid thinking mind, and muscle tension.

20 minutes of mindfulness a day can effectively reduce the symptoms of anxiety before, during, and after an anxiety attack or an episode of anxious thinking. Mindfulness practices tend to include focus on the breath. Practicing breathing exercises for anxiety helps increase mindfulness and reduce activity in the brain. Deep and controlled breaths are like a reset button for the brain, especially during anxiety. When we think of being anxious, worried, or afraid, we might notice our heart rate increasing. Anxiety typically does not come with long, deep breaths, but short rapid ones. The cross-signals of the rapid heart rate and short breathing actually trigger the brain’s anxiety further and vice versa.

Breathing For Anxiety

Start by identifying five things in each of your senses while trying to slow down your breath. After you have slowed your mind down with focus, turn your focus to your breath. Try breathing in through your nose for five full seconds, holding it for five full seconds, then letting it out for five full seconds. Repeat this breathing process. You will find that your body is systematically relaxing and your brain is starting to slow down. Soon, your anxious moment will be over and you will be in a clam state of mind.

Anxiety can be a trigger for relapse on drugs and alcohol. Recovery starts with holistic treatment of dual diagnosis issues, targeting mind, body, and spirit for transformative change. Our integrative programs at Enlightened Solutions bring together the best of both worlds, helping our clients find freedom in recovery. For more information, call us today at 844-234-LIVE.

Mania, Not Depression, Is The Hardest To Deal With In Bipolar

Mania, Not Depression, Is The Hardest To Deal With In Bipolar

Bipolar disorder can feel like living two different lives. Defined by episodes of mania and depression, bipolar is defined by experiencing shifting mood swings in the extreme of each category for extended periods of time. There are two different kinds of bipolar. Bipolar 1 includes more manic episodes than depressive episodes. The episodes can last for weeks or even months at a time. Bipolar 2 includes more depression and can change much more rapidly. Depression in bipolar is similar to other kinds of depression. What someone with bipolar experiences in mania, however, is unlike any other condition. Sometimes it is possible to feel a manic episode coming on. Thoughts might start to change, energy increases, and ideas become bigger over a short period of time. Most of the time, someone with bipolar wakes up at 1,000% instead of 25% and the energy doesn’t stop.

Symptoms Of Bipolar Mania

Bipolar mania will look different for every individual. Generally, there are shared symptoms which include:

  • Feeling “up” or elated

  • Having an abundant amount of energy

  • Feeling overly optimistic and positive

  • Coming up with high standard plans and ideas

  • Feeling invincible, often accompanied by a heightened sense of ego

  • Acting without consequence or consideration

  • “Jammed speech” or talking so fast as though there hasn’t been conversation for weeks

  • Insomnia or restlessness

Shopping beyond budget, participating in reckless behaviors, substance abuse, sexual promiscuity, and other thrill seeking behaviors are common during mania.

What Makes Mania Difficult

After spending a period of time in a depressive state, mania can feel like a welcome relief, if not an escape from the doldrums. Unfortunately, mania can quickly get out of control. The brain can become so rapid fire that it turns all the positive energy in a different direction. People in manic episodes might experience psychosis and paranoia because their mind is moving so quickly.

Mania is not an upside to depression in bipolar. It can mean feeling out of control, unable to trust oneself, and not knowing when the madness will end. It can mean not knowing mania is even happening until money is spent, arguments are started, and reckless behaviors take a toll.


Bipolar and addiction often go hand in hand. To treat dual diagnosis problems, there is a solution. At Enlightened Solutions, we see the holistic approach to treatment work successfully in bringing peace and serenity to our client’s lives. Our integrative partial care programs fuse together spiritual wellness, clinical therapy, and 12 step philosophy. For more information, call us today at 844-234-LIVE.

The H.O.W. Of Recovery: Honest, Open Chakras, Willingness

The H.O.W. Of Recovery: Honest, Open Chakras, Willingness

We are repeatedly told that recovery from drug and alcohol addiction, as well as most co-occurring mental health disorders has to be holistic. Holistic healing, holistic wellness, and a holistic approach all mean the same thing. The word holistic means comprehending that everything is made of many parts and all of those parts are intimately interconnected. Addiction and alcoholism are not isolated to the mind or the body or even the spirit. When someone is overcome by addiction and alcoholism they have to recover in mind, body, and spirit. Trying to define mental illness by just one part of the equation does an injustice to the complexity of mental health disorders and often does an injustice to someone getting the treatment they need. A key to understanding the holistic approach is understanding that the only way to explain mental illness is by referring to the whole person- mind, body, and spirit.

Spiritual wellness, spirituality, and spiritual healing are an important part of the recovery process. Most treatment centers take the holistic approach and include some therapeutic components in their programs which reflect spiritual wellness. Massage, acupuncture, yoga, meditation, reiki, are common examples. One area many treatment centers don’t focus on is healing the chakras and opening them up. Opening the chakras allows the energy in the body to effortlessly flow from head to toe. Chakras which are closed and have been closed for many years stop the flow of energy which can cause emotional as well as physical health problems.

Chakras are seven energy centers in the body starting from our sacral region in our low back and center all the way to the top of our head. We work with our chakras through yoga, meditation, and reiki to release the energy. Breathing exercises focused on opening the chakras can help release the blockages there. Most often, our difficulties in treatment are reflected in which chakras are closed. There are correlations between what each chakra represents and regulates to what we go through on a daily basis. Keeping the chakras open helps us to be more open to live, recovery, and the freedom recovery promises.

At Enlightened Solutions we provide an integrative program of holistic healing, clinical therapy, and 12 step philosophy for total transformation. Our partial care programs are designed for dual diagnosis patients needing healing for substance use and mental health disorders. Recovery starts with you. Start your recovery with us. Call us today for more information at 844-234-LIVE.