Altering habits and confronting addiction is a difficult task. For many addicts in recovery, quitting one habit is easier if you have something to replace it with. This phenomenon leads to what is known as cross-addiction. Cross-addiction happens when an addict becomes dependent on another substance after curbing their initial habit. Turning to something else to fill the void left by addiction is a common experience. Coffee, hard liquor, social media, sex, cigarettes, or any other dopamine releases are cross addictions that those in recovery often struggle with. There are several healthier coping mechanisms for addiction that can help you overcome cross-addiction.
Part of the reason that addicts turn to alternative substances after quitting is that they are used to getting a regular supply of dopamine from that substance. Exercising is a great way to get the release of endorphins you are looking for and improve your mental health at the same time. Exercise improves mental health by reducing anxiety, depression, and negative mood while raising self-esteem levels.
Develop a Regular Sleep Schedule
Lack of sleep is one of the biggest problems facing American adults. One-third of the American population reports getting less than 7 hours of sleep a night and half of the population report feeling sleepy during the day. Even if you are used to working off of insufficient sleep, your body is more sensitive to this than you may realize. Studies have shown that going to bed and waking up at a consistent time every day can greatly improve your mental well-being
Try Meet-Up Groups
If your old friend group revolved around smoking or drinking, it might be time to start looking for new people to spend time with. You don’t have to abandon your old friends, but the people we surround ourselves with have a big impact on how we live our lives. Meet-ups can be a good way to find new friends with similar interests. Whether you enjoy pottery, arts, sewing, gaming, or sports, there are groups you can meet to enjoy those activities with.
Make Sure You Are Eating Right
The food we eat affects the way our body produces hormones and our blood sugar levels. Eating highly processed foods and low-nutrient diets has been shown to make recovery more difficult. Fish, eggs, vegetables, high protein items, and whole grains are good foods to incorporate into your diet. Try switching to healthier foods for just a few weeks and your body will be able to tell the difference.
Find Addiction Recovery in Havertown, PA
If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, don’t hesitate to reach out! American Treatment Network offers alcohol and opioid addiction treatment in Newark, DE, Dover, DE, and Havertown, PA. Our clinicians, therapists, and addiction specialists provide the best in alcohol and opioid therapy. To learn more or schedule an appointment, contact us today!