The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in many ways, but if you’re struggling with substance abuse or addiction, you may feel the odds of getting sober in quarantine are even more stacked against you.
We understand that isolation and social distancing during your struggle bring on a set of challenges that none of us could have ever predicted. There are things you can do to work on getting sober in quarantine or to continue to recover, and we want to help.
Getting Sober In Quarantine: Pay Attention To Your Mental Health
The struggle to beat addiction can be difficult in the best of situations, but in the middle of a world pandemic, there is even more stress on you. The mental tolls of the COVID-19-related social distancing and isolation are immeasurable. This stress not only taxes your physical body but can increase your susceptibility to misuse substances and/or relapse.
Substance abuse can also lead to the physical impact that puts you at increased susceptibility to COVID-19. It’s no wonder you may be feeling even more confused, depressed, and hopeless.
When you want to get or stay sober in quarantine, it’s important to remember that the outbreak of COVID-19 has brought about additional anxieties and stress. These can worsen your mental health and physical health. But they also increase the odds of your use of tobacco, alcohol, or other drugs. This means it’s also important that you’re gentle with yourself and don’t put too much undue pressure on an already stressful time in your life.
The good news is that there are things you can do to get and stay sober in quarantine. You can take control of this time and use it to your benefit.
How You Can Take Control And Get Sober In Quarantine
First, remember that everyone is living on a higher stress level. This means your propensity to deal with the stress with drugs or alcohol is most likely increased. This does not mean you’re failing, or that you’re weak. It means that you’re human, and you’re looking at how to cope with this weird world in which you live.
When nothing makes sense, it’s not uncommon for those who don’t struggle with substance abuse to turn to alcohol or recreational drugs.
That’s why getting sober in quarantine can be just right for you. It’s okay for you to feel what you feel about the world and your anxiety. Doing so without having to worry about being judged by friends or family means you can say, “No,” to drugs or alcohol, and just, “Yes,” to be real with yourself. Even if that means going through emotional outbursts or intense feelings. You’re in your own safe space, and it’s healthy to feel what you feel. Much healthier than turning to a substance to numb them.
And the thing about getting sober in quarantine is that you are not alone in living a very non-interactive, non-triggering life. Many workplaces are closed or tele-work situations. Restaurants and bars are limited, if even open at all, and even social gatherings in numbers over 10 or so are limited. This is the perfect time for you to start abstaining from substances and not have to worry about triggers or bad influences or even bad situations that might turn you toward using.
Your Health in Quarantine
This is also an incredible time for you to work on getting your best health. Doing so makes you stronger in the battle against substance abuse, both physically and mentally. You can take this time to get into that workout routine you’d been thinking about. Even if it’s just a daily walk around your block. You can work on eating better, healthier foods to build your immune system back up. This might be the time you find you really enjoy putting good things in your body and watching the outcome.
Mostly, social distancing and isolation have left the ‘social scene’ looking very different. As we said, though, that can be to your complete and total advantage. There are limited expectations for you to engage socially. So you can purpose and choose with whom you engage and with whom you don’t. During this time, you can immerse yourself in groups that will support you and encourage you and your recovery.
Ocean Hills Recovery: Trusted Help At Your Fingertips
At Ocean Hills Recovery, we know this is a difficult time and we’re here to help. We’re experienced in helping meet the challenges that come with battling addiction and getting sober, and we want to help you even get sober in quarantine. This period of time can be one of great personal growth and strength, and we can help it be the time where you start on the road to living the life you want to live. Contact us today if you want to take those first steps.
Sources: https://medicine.umich.edu/dept/psychiatry/michigan-psychiatry-resources-covid-19/specific-mental-health-conditions/addiction-substance-use-recovery-during-covid-19-pandemic  https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/managing-stress-anxiety.html  https://healthcare.utah.edu/the-scope/shows.php?shows=0_p0xim6x3  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4590612/
About the author:
Nicole earned her doctoral degree in Psychology with an emphasis on marriage and family therapy at California School of Professional Psychology. Her doctoral thesis was a grounded theory study exploring the role of alienation and connectedness in the life course of addiction. She specializes in treating addiction and trauma. She is certified in DBT and EMDR, two of the most highly regarded evidence-based methods in psychotherapy. Dr. Doss is a strong LGBT advocate and provides open and affirming support to her LGBT clients.
Dr. Doss’s earlier education included graduating cum laude from the University of California, Irvine in June of 2007 with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. While there, she received honors recognition by Psi Chi and Golden Key honor societies.
Nicole has been working with alcoholics and addicts in our California drug and alcohol rehab center as an advisor and counselor for many years. She is passionate about providing quality counseling and care to her clients. Her main focus is on integrating the 12 Step and disease models of addiction with experiential therapeutic theory. She is married to Greg; they have two adorable sons together and an energetic yellow Labrador Retriever.