6 Myths About Alcohol and Alcoholism That Need to Disappear

6 Myths About Alcohol and Alcoholism That Need to Disappear

6 Myths About Alcohol and Alcoholism That Need to Disappear

6 Myths About Alcohol and Alcoholism That Need to Disappear

Whether you have a loved one who is recovering from alcoholism or a recovering addict yourself, the fact remains that myths and stereotypes about alcohol can be very damaging. Here are 6 myths about alcohol and alcoholism that need to be put to rest now.

Alcohol is legal for those above 21 years old in the United States. But its legal status doesn't mean that it isn't abused or addictive. In fact, it's a huge problem in our country: over 15 million people struggle with some sort of alcohol use disorder.

Even though alcohol abuse is quite prevalent in our society, certain myths about alcohol and misconceptions about alcoholics persist. We're going to go over 6 of the most common myths that people still believe about alcohol and alcohol abuse. This will help you understand the truth about drinking and addiction.

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What to Expect in the First Years of Alcohol Addiction Recovery

What to Expect in the First Years of Alcohol Addiction Recovery

What to Expect in the First Years of Alcohol Addiction Recovery

What to Expect in the First Years of Alcohol Addiction Recovery

Getting over your alcohol addiction can be a tough road ahead, but being prepared can help soothe the journey somewhat. Read more to learn what you can expect in the first years of alcohol addiction recovery and become informed today.

According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, it's estimated that there are over 15 million people over the age of 18 with alcohol use disorder.

That number is high, but you're no longer a statistic. You've realized that you have a problem with alcohol, and now you're doing what you can to get sober.

Some people have struggled with alcoholism for months. For others, it may be years or even decades. Sobriety can be intimidating, but when you know what to expect it can be less scary.

Do you want to know what to expect in the first years of your recovery? Read on to learn more.

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What to Do When You Relapse on Alcohol

What to Do When You Relapse on Alcohol

What to Do When You Relapse on Alcohol

Relapse is a difficult part of recovery that many people have to deal with, but you shouldn'tt let it diminish how far you have come. Read more to learn more on what to do when you relapse on alcohol so you can get back on track in no time.

Overcoming alcohol addiction is a challenge which needs commitment and time. Studies show that approximately 40 to 60 percent of people treated for substance abuse are likely to have a relapse. If you have ever had to overcome an addiction, you know how difficult it is to resist the urge to backslide.

A slip is a momentary lapse which causes regret to the victim soon after the action. It can occur when a person experiences something which distracts his/her focus temporarily. Relapse describes a person who manages a sober life for quite some time only to resume to old habits eventually.

Falling back is not equivalent to ultimate failure. Knowing what to do when you relapse is what matters. The bottom line is that the victim has expressed the urge to quit drinking.

Keep on reading to learn more!

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5 Tips to Help Reduce Alcohol Cravings

5 Tips to Help Reduce Alcohol Cravings

5 Tips to Help Reduce Alcohol Cravings

Recovering from alcoholism is a constant uphill battle that takes a lot of strength to overcome. Here are 5 tips you can use to help you on your road of recovery to reduce alcohol cravings in a fast and healthy way.

There are millions of people suffering from alcoholism. Of those millions, only a tiny fraction will choose to go sober and maintain their sobriety.

One of the things that make alcohol so hard to kick is the changes it makes to your brain. If you have been a heavy drinker for years, some of those changes could be permanent.

Here, we give you 5 tips to help reduce alcohol cravings so over time it can become less of a struggle to stay sober. Even better, these are all completely natural and dietary based changes you can make today to lessen your cravings and keep you on the road to recovery.

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8 Tips for Rebuilding Self Esteem in Addiction Recovery

8 Tips for Rebuilding Self Esteem in Addiction Recovery

No matter how far along you are on your path to recovery, it's vital to set aside time to focus on yourself and reclaiming your self-esteem.

Addiction can strip us of our sense of self-worth. When we feel bad about ourselves seeking outside help and trying to better our lives may not feel like a battle worth fighting.

It is for this reason that rebuilding your self-esteem is a vital part of the recovery process.

Unsure of how to take back your sense of self-confidence and respect?

Here are eight tips to help you begin rebuilding self esteem as you continue working toward your recovery from addiction.


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Do Addiction Recovery Apps Work? Here Are 6 That Could Help Your Alcohol Recovery Journey

Do Addiction Recovery Apps Work? Here Are 6 That Could Help Your Alcohol Recovery Journey

Do Addiction Recovery Apps Work? Here Are 6 That Could Help Your Alcohol Recovery Journey

Should You Try Addiction Recovery Apps for Alcohol Recovery?

There's an app for everything including sobriety apps. If you're considering addiction recovery apps for alcohol recovery, here are 6 you might want to try.

Alcoholism grips over 40 million Americans ages 12 and older.

That means 1 in 7 people struggle with alcoholism in the United States. There's no doubt that this is a common battle to face.

And if you're recovering from alcoholism, it can be a difficult task to face on your own. Without the proper help, you may even slip back into your bad habits.

Lucky for you, addiction recovery apps are out there and ready to help you. Using these, you may be able to stay on track to full recovery.

Read on to find yours.

1. Sober Grid

Often, when struggling with alcohol recovery, it can become easy to feel alone. No one should have to do it alone, and that's what Sober Grid tries to do.

Sober Grid connects you with other people that are recovering. And some who have already may be on the app to give support. The app is free on both the Itunes and Android stores.

Users on the app can see in what areas other users are. This gives you the ability to meet with people like you in person.

Sober Grid offers you the community you need to get through recovery. You won't need to feel alone again.

If a situation becomes too tempting, you can contact someone in the community. Like social media, you can also publish your thoughts to a welcoming community.

2. Sobriety Counter

Sobriety Counter, also called EasyQuit, is a free app that makes sobriety fun. While the struggle can be hard, Sobriety Counter gives you some positive encouragement.

Sobriety Counter lets you personalize your recovery. You can choose to go cold turkey or take a slow path. Its flexibility makes this a perfect app for anyone.

A counter on the app keeps track of all the benefits quitting has given you. You can watch as your body's blood circulates better and fat disappears.

The app also counts up how much money you have saved since quitting. If you want, you can set a goal to reach before buying something.

Sobriety Counter also includes a three-minute game to distract you from the urge to drink. It's three minutes because that's how long it takes to lose the urge on average.

Sobriety Counter also has 64 badges that you receive when you meet goals. This positive encouragement will help you recover more than you know.

3. Stop Drinking with Andrew Johnson

Stop Drinking with Andrew Johnson ranks #31 on the Itunes Medical section. Although you can't get this app on Andriod, this app may make all the difference for $2.99.

Stop Drinking with Andrew Johnson focuses on the mental aspect of recovery. This app doesn't stop with helping you avoid drinking. It also shows you why you shouldn't.

When you open the app, it offers you a daily listening session to relax you from drinking. Using hypnotherapy, Andrew Johnson leads you away from your negative habits.

The therapy changes your thought process about alcohol. Soon, even your subconscious wants to turn down a drink.

The app also offers you different resources to use. For example, it also offers visualization tools.

4. 12 Steps AA Companion

The 12 Steps AA companion is a helpful partner to any AA member. It costs $2.99, and you can get it on the Itunes store but not Android.

It respects your privacy from the very start. Even the app icon doesn't look like an AA app. And each time you open it, a calculator tells you how far you've come since being sober.

The app also includes the famous AA big book, which costs more in print than the app does. This means you can even save money by buying this app.

The 12 Steps AA companion also lets you use the book as any book. You can highlight text, bookmark specific passages, and more.

Along with these features, users also have access to a prayers section. The prayers are many of the common AA prayers. It also includes prayers to go along with the book.

A contact and notes section is also part of the app. With this app, you can have all the perks of the AA at your fingertips.

5. SoberTool

SoberTool is a free app on the Itunes store. And because it isn't specific to alcohol, you can use it for any kind of addiction.

A certified alcoholism counselor with 27 years of experience created the app. It focuses on creating habits that keep you sober.

Like many apps, SoberTool lets you know how many days you have been sober. Then, it calculates how much money you have saved too.

You'll see daily motivational messages that SoberTool created. And it will remind you to read them.

Because a professional developed it, the app can help you with almost any situation. You can even use a search bar to look for help.

And, because sobering up isn't a job to do alone, the app includes a community forum to use. With it, you talk to others experiencing similar emotions to yours.

6. Happify

Happify is not an app for alcoholics, but it is worth mentioning. Happify helps you defeat the feelings that make you want to drink in the first place.

It takes account of your habits and helps you decide what new habits to make. Using these new habits, you tell it how happy you feel.

Then the app quantifies how happy you are, and over time, you can see how you improve. Soon, you'll be able to improve your happiness in the way you want.

Happify is free on the Itunes store and not on android. To get full features, you could consider paying for a yearly subscription.

Want More Than Addiction Recovery Apps?

Now that you know about addiction recovery apps, it may be time to get yours. What are you waiting for? Your virtual assistant could help save your life.

If you're looking for more help, check out our blog for more. You can also find more helpful information in our AA literature.

Do you know someone recovering from alcoholism? Buy them an AA gift to celebrate their recovery. And if you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.

 

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8 Strategies for Staying Sober During Family Reunions

8 Strategies for Staying Sober During Family Reunions

Staying sober can be essentially challenging when in social situations surrounded by family. Do you share that you are sober now? How do handle people offering you alcohol?

We're going to give you 5 great sobriety tips for staying sober at your next family reunion.

1. Make a Plan

Prepare before the reunion what you are going to do when someone offers you a drink. You are at a gathering where people will be drinking and partying, so someone will most likely offer you a drink.

You don't owe anyone an explanation on why you are getting clean. Come up with a response and stick to it so that you aren't tempted.

A great way to prevent the whole situation from happening is to grab a water or soda early on. People are less likely to offer you a drink if they see you already have one in hand.

2. Why Aren't You Drinking?

If someone does offer you a drink a natural question will be why you aren't drinking. Now it's your family, maybe they already know you are sober.

If this is the case you can politely remind them that you are sober now. Or you can say that you realized you had a problem and decided it would be best to stop drinking.

If you aren't comfortable talking about trying to stay sober, there are plenty of other responses you can have at the ready. For example, you could say that you just don't feel like drinking.

You could say that you are the designated driver for others, which is mostly a true statement anyway. You could say that your current diet or medication prevents you from drinking.

3. Set a Time Limit and an Out

Family situations can be stressful. This is especially true when it is a large family reunion where there are more than a normal amount of family members in one place.

Setting a time limit for yourself can help you cope with the situation while you're in it. It will also limit the amount of time you spend in a situation that may cause you stress and trigger you to want to drink.

Preparing your out in advance ensures that when you've hit your limit and you need to leave, you can. If you drive yourself, then you're set.

If you drove to the reunion with others, or the reunion is where you are staying, you need an alternate plan. Maybe this means you arrange with a friend to be available to come get you.

You could have uber at the ready to get a ride. If the reunion is at a destination you can scope the place out before you go.

Look for options that allow you to "take a time out" from the situation. This could be at the destination or a nearby coffee shop.

4. Get a Buddy

Have someone that you trust be with you at the family reunion to help hold you accountable for your sobriety. It is a lot easier to stay sober when there is someone else there.

This is especially true if you are early on in your sobriety when temptations are stronger and easier to fall for. Don't think it has to be a family member, you could bring a significant other or close friend.

5. Avoid People Pleasing

Remember that just because they are your family doesn't mean you should feel obligated. Do not feel like you need to do anything you are not comfortable doing.

It can be tough to stay strong when you are facing a group, but remember that you and your sobriety are more important. Think about what situations make you uncomfortable and prepare yourself to say no to them.

We all know who that "toxic" family member is, we all have one. Limit your time with these family members as they will increase your stress and risk level.

If you can't avoid them, try planning on limiting your time at the reunion. Only go for a day or two instead of the whole week.

6. Have Realistic Expectations

Life and people aren't perfect, so set realistic expectations for your family reunion. Your family members probably haven't made major changes.

The conflicts that popped up in the past will probably pop up again. Accept them, take ownership of your role, and let it go.

Resist the urge to try and control the situation and others. You can't control how other people are.

7. Plan Activities

Don't let yourself end up sitting around for hours with family drinking and talking. There are plenty of other activities you can do with your family that doesn't involve drinking.

Don't let yourself fall into romanticising alcohol. When family members start bringing up the past and romanticising drunken events, remove yourself.

8. Find the Local Meeting

Before you go to the family reunion, locate when and where the local AA meetings are held. This will be the support system you need when the family starts becoming too much.

If you already know when and where the meeting is you remove the excuse of not knowing. You'll most likely need to go to a meeting after being surrounded by all of your family for extended periods of time.

Staying Sober

The smartest thing you can do when staying sober at a family reunion is to make a plan and prepare for your family reunion. Get your responses ready for the tough questions, and remember that you don't owe anyone any explanations.

Know where your out is, and where you can go if you need a break from the situation. Look up where the local meetings are.

Check out these great meditation tips you can take with you and use at your next family reunion.

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7 Ways Your Body Reacts During Alcohol Recovery Timeline

7 Ways Your Body Reacts During Alcohol Recovery Timeline

Have you recently made the decision to stop drinking? Perhaps you've already detoxed from alcohol and are ready for recovery.

In either case, the road to recovery isn't easy. 40% of alcoholics eventually abstain from alcohol completely or become low-risk drinkers.

Relapse is common in the first year of recovery. It also occurs in some individuals after the first year and even after the third or fifth years.

There are, however, ways you can avoid relapse and make long-term recovery a reality. By understanding the alcohol recovery timeline, you can prepare yourself to defy the odds.

In this article, we'll explore 7 things that happen to your body during alcohol recovery. That way, you know what to expect in the days, months, and years ahead!

1. Acute Withdrawal

The time it takes for your body to flush away the last of the alcohol generally takes about a week to 10 days. The first 72 hours after your last drink, however, are crucial.

The first 72 hours is often the most difficult period. As the alcohol leaves your system, you may develop adverse physical side effects caused by acute alcohol withdrawal. Acute alcohol withdrawal is often the first thing that happens along the alcohol recovery timeline.

The symptoms of acute alcohol withdrawal include:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Headache
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety
  • Shakiness/tremors
  • Sweating
  • Appetite loss
  • Irritability
  • Fatigue

These symptoms are most prevalent in the first 72 hours. They can last anywhere from a week to a month depending on the severity of a person's alcoholism. Those who drank heavily for months and years are more likely to develop acute alcohol withdrawal.

How to Cope with Withdrawal

It's important to stay hydrated during this time. Drinking lots of water and electrolyte beverages, such as Pedialyte, will prevent dehydration. They can also soothe some of the symptoms of withdrawal, like nausea and sweating.

Reaching out for support also helps. You need a support system of positive people who will encourage you to keep going. These should be people who will help you cope with withdrawal, not enable you.

In serious acute alcohol withdrawal, rapid heart rate, seizures, and hallucinations can occur. If you experience any of these symptoms, seek medical care immediately.

2. Post-Acute Withdrawal

For some people, detox starts the first hour since their last drink. Acute alcohol withdrawal can last up to two weeks. It's often this amount of time it takes for your body to detox from alcohol completely.

If you've made it through detox, you've overcome the hardest part. Next in the alcohol recovery timeline are the psychological effects of post-acute withdrawal.

During post-acute withdrawal, you may experience some (or all) of the following symptoms:

  • Lower energy
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Nightmares
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Aggression
  • Decreased libido
  • Memory problems

You may also experience alcohol cravings as your brain and the central nervous system adjusts to the changes.

How to Cope with Post-Acute Alcohol Withdrawal

During this time, it's imperative that you seek counseling and medical attention. Not only so you cope better with the symptoms of post-acute alcohol withdrawal. Therapy can also help you develop coping mechanisms to deal with alcohol cravings.

In the first month after quitting drinking, your liver function starts to improve as the liver fat decreases. You'll start to feel better physically and will likely start to lose belly fat.

Don't disrupt the progress you've already made once you get through acute withdrawal. Reach out to help so you can conquer post-acute withdrawal, as well.

3. Anhedonia

You may also experience something known as anhedonia. Anhedonia is a loss of interest and pleasure. It often develops during the first weeks and months of the alcohol recovery timeline.

Anhedonia often develops during the transition from frequent alcohol usage to abstinence. They'll often withdraw socially or experience general malice and difficulty socializing.

Someone is likely to develop anhedonia if they have depression or anxiety. They're also more prone to anhedonia if they've recently experienced trauma or have a history of abuse or neglect.

How to Cope with Anhedonia

Here are some ideas on how to deal with anhedonia:

  • Joining a gym or a sports team
  • Practicing yoga or meditation
  • Cooking new and healthier meals
  • Taking up a new hobby, like knitting or painting

Some doctors may prescribe antidepressants to recovering alcoholics who are experiencing anhedonia.

It's important that you stay busy and find new activities you can enjoy that don't revolve around drinking. Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) is not only helpful for staying sober. It can give you an opportunity to socialize and connect with others who know what you're going through.

4. Sobriety

The first weeks and months of recovery are physically the hardest.

After about a month or so, your body will no longer go through withdrawal. However, the road to recovery doesn't end there. The coming months and years are often the most difficult - emotionally and mentally.

Social events or certain people or places can trigger cravings. Stressful events or trauma can also trigger one's desire to start drinking again. Often times, these kinds of cravings can feel more physical than they do mental.

For as long as you stay sober, it's important that you keep working on your coping mechanisms. That way, should you experience triggering events, you'll be able to abstain from alcohol rather than giving in.

It's also good to keep reminding yourself of why you wanted to get sober. You can write reminders down in the form of inspiring quotes or as a list of goals or reasons.

Understanding the Alcohol Recovery Timeline

Recovering from alcohol addiction is a big accomplishment. It's physically and emotionally challenging, and you've made the decision to recover, you should feel proud of yourself.

You'll need reminders along the road of recovery to keep you moving forward. AA coins can mark each milestone you accomplish in recovery and can keep track of your progress.

Keep reminding yourself of why you wanted to get sober. For ideas, contact us at The Token Shop today!

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