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Breaking the Addiction Cycle: 4 Tips to Get Started

Breaking the Addiction Cycle: 4 Tips to Get Started

If you're struggling to break free from the grip of addiction, you have lots of company. More than 20 million Americans struggle with substance use disorder, but unfortunately, the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion estimates that not all of them get the care they need. 

That’s just the statistic for substance use disorder. Behavioral addictions 一 including addictions to gaming, gambling, shopping, etc. 一 have increased over 130% from 1995-2019.

Regardless of what type of addiction you have, it’s no secret that breaking the cycle is hard (if not impossible) on your own.

Thankfully, you’re not alone. Dr. Hadi Estakhri and our team at Allied Psychiatry & Mental Health in Newport Beach, California, are here to help you overcome addiction and reclaim your life.

Here are four tips to get started.

1. Reach out for help

Asking for help is always a sign of strength and never one of weakness. Your first step in breaking the cycle is to acknowledge that tackling addiction alone can be challenging. Reach out to professionals who specialize in addiction treatment. 

Dr. Estakhri holds formal training in addiction psychiatry and is double board-certified in general and addiction psychiatry, so he’s well-prepared to help you overcome both behavioral and substance addictions. 

Dr. Estakhri provides personalized guidance and support tailored to your needs. Whether it's therapy, counseling, or medication-assisted treatment such as Suboxone® and Vivitrol® treatment, don't hesitate to explore all options available to you.

In addition to medications like Suboxone and Vivitrol, Dr. Estakhri also offers ketamine therapy. While ketamine is often discussed in regard to depression treatment, ketamine therapy plays a role in addiction treatment too. 

Two clinical trials examined how ketamine impacted addiction to cocaine and alcohol. Both trials revealed that ketamine plus therapy yielded better outcomes than therapy alone. 

The study that examined ketamine for alcohol use disorder also found that ketamine helped reduce heavy drinking days, reduce the overall probability of alcohol usage, and increase the number of abstinent days after the ketamine infusion.

Dr. Estakhri can also treat any comorbid conditions, such as depression, that may be contributing to or exacerbating your addiction. 

Reaching out for help is your first step in overcoming your addiction.

2. Build a solid support system

Surround yourself with a network of people 一 friends, family members, support groups (online or in-person), or mentors 一 who genuinely want to see you succeed in your recovery journey. 

Not only does a support system provide accountability, but sharing your experiences with others can also alleviate the sense of isolation (especially in the years since COVID-19 emerged) often associated with addiction.

3. Develop healthy coping mechanisms

In many cases, stress and anxiety disorders like post-traumatic stress disorder can trigger relapses. If you’re actively trying to break the cycle of addiction, you need to take into account the stressors that may trigger you. 

Identify alternative ways to cope with stress, eat nourishing meals, and practice good sleep hygiene. Participate in activities that bring you joy and reduce your stress levels. Examples include exercise (on your own or in class settings), meditation, hobbies, or creative outlets like music and art. 

Learning to manage your emotions in healthy ways will empower you to navigate life's ups and downs without resorting to addictive behaviors or substances. Fueling your body with healthy foods can also nourish your mental wellness.

4. Celebrate each milestone

Recovery is a gradual process, and you may encounter setbacks along the way. Instead of becoming overwhelmed by the prospect of long-term sobriety or abstinence, focus on making positive choices each day. Celebrate each milestone, no matter how big or small.

Tip: Write your wins in a notebook. When you’re feeling low, read through your list.

Take a stand against addiction

This May 一 in honor of Mental Health Awareness Month 一 speak up and reach out for help to overcome your addiction. Whether you need therapy, ketamine for an underlying mental health condition, or outpatient detox, Dr. Estakhri and our Allied Psychiatry and Mental Health team have what you need under one roof.

To learn more or to schedule a consultation, call us today at 949-945-0927. You can also book an appointment online anytime.

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