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Our Mental Health Blogs

The Rewards of Addiction Recovery

The Rewards of Addiction Recovery

Last week, I wrote about the costs of drug addiction.  This week, I’d like to focus on the rewards of addiction recovery. For many active addicts, their drug of choice is kind of like their best friend. The drug addict and the drug have this kind of love-hate relationship often seen in the best and worst of partnerships. So it’s no wonder that when the addict tries to let go of the drug there is often a great deal of difficulty.

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Addiction Recovery: A Spiritual Perspective

Addiction Recovery: A Spiritual Perspective

When it comes to recovery from active addiction, there are many approaches and treatments that have been tried over the years (see The Best Way to Quit Using Drugs).  Research has shown that addiction is a physiological disease that manifests itself in abnormal behavior.  Along with this is the idea that the addict’s disease actually began before the individual picked up the first drug.

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Handling Pain Medication Responsibly in Addiction Recovery

Handling Pain Medication Responsibly in Addiction Recovery

Last week I had the distinct (snicker) pleasure of having to visit my dentist due to an abscess. After a brief consultation I decided to have the tooth extracted. It was at this time that the hygienist recommended a narcotic pain killer. I declined and said I would take Extra Strength Tylenol.

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Recovered Addict or Recovering Addict?

Recovered Addict or Recovering Addict?

In recovery there are two different camps, so to speak. There are those individuals who say that they are recovering addicts, while others say they are recovered addicts.  At first glance you might think there is no difference but I disagree.

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Addiction is a Feelings Disease

Addiction is a Feelings Disease

Addiction, as the saying goes, is a feelings disease. Whenever I used to find myself feeling a certain way, say depressed, angry, upset, etc, etc, etc, I would then find a way to use some kind of chemical to alter my emotions. In the end it didn’t matter how I was feeling, I knew that all I had to do was to get high, and voila, that would do the trick.

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Obsession and Compulsion: The Double-Edged Sword

Obsession and Compulsion: The Double-Edged Sword

I am an addict.  Yes, I am in recovery (24 years and counting) but that doesn’t mean that my addictive qualities do not rear their ugly heads from time to time. This is most commonly exhibited in the form of obsession and compulsion. 

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Addiction Stigma and Celebrating Mental Health

Addiction Stigma and Celebrating Mental Health

Early on, I was very aware of addiction stigma and the stigma surrounding mental illness. That’s why, even though May is designated Mental Health Awareness Month, I focus on my mental health and reducing addiction stigma every day of the year. This has not always been the case. When I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and struggling with addiction issues over 30 years ago, I didn’t have much to honor. In fact, I pretty much hated life as I knew it.

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Finding Freedom from Addiction Through 12-Step Recovery

Finding Freedom from Addiction Through 12-Step Recovery

Addiction is cunning, baffling and powerful. Its sole mission is to make our lives a living hell. It brings along with it a number of its companions: denial, rationalization, and blame, to name but a few. Living with addiction is like living in a prison – one in which one feels there is no escape.

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Addiction Recovery Requires Constant Self-Evaluation

Addiction Recovery Requires Constant Self-Evaluation

Addiction is death. I don’t just mean physical death. I mean emotional, mental and spiritual death as well. Addiction has the ability to destroy lives – and I should know. I have seen first-hand how addiction has destroyed relationships, leaving individuals broken and beaten down. I have this experience.

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About Karl Shallowhorn, Author of the Debunking Addiction Blog

About Karl Shallowhorn, Author of the Debunking Addiction Blog

I was born in Buffalo, NY and was adopted at 6 months. I had a pretty “normal” childhood. Once I got into my teens, I began to experiment with alcohol. Upon entering college, I progressed to other drugs. During my freshman year, I experienced a psychotic break. Despite this, I continued to abuse drugs. Somehow, I managed to graduate from college and was able to land my first real job.

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