If you’re in substance abuse recovery, keeping yourself sober during the Covid-19 pandemic can prove to be challenging. There are many different factors that can push you over the edge. Being forced to stay at home means you’re socially isolated and you are also unable to attend support group meetings and activities.
Having too much time in your hands while staying alone at home is also the perfect excuse to drink or use drugs. Of course, there’s always the worry of not being able to survive this pandemic. These feelings of anxiety are dangerous because they can trigger a relapse.
So, how can you keep yourself sober during a pandemic? Is there a way to redirect your thoughts of drinking or using drugs? There are different ways that you can try out in case you are tempted to do so. While these recommendations may not work for everyone, these might be useful for some people who are struggling.
Eat good food
A lot of times, food cravings are being mistaken for the need to drink alcohol or use drugs. When you’re hungry, it is easy to feel empty and irritable. Eating irregularly or consuming unhealthy junk food can also make you feel lethargic and weak. It is then very critical to eat nutritious and delicious food.
When you eat good food, you are satisfying different senses of your body. Not only are you providing your body with fuel, but you’re also satisfying your senses of taste, smell, and sight. At the same time, you can also strengthen your body’s defenses against viruses and diseases.
Eat foods that can boost your immune system like fresh produce, proteins, and healthy fats. Stay away from empty calories like sugar-filled snacks and junk food.
Exercising can increase your endorphins. Having a natural increase in your happy hormones could help you avoid going on a downward spiral and prevent you from using substances. But how can you do that if you can’t go to the gym, you can’t attend your spinning class, and you can’t even go out to get your sweat on?
While the pandemic can make it difficult for you to maintain your fitness routine, this doesn’t mean that you should just give up and plant yourself on the couch permanently. You can do exercises at home even without equipment. Focus on simple bodyweight exercises or aerobic classes you can follow online. Exercising can give you something to do and also give your body more energy.
Start a new passion project
Having extra time in your hands also gives you more time to think about drinking or using substances. For many people, boredom is often a major reason why they start drinking or using drugs in the first place. To combat boredom and or break the monotony of being at home with nothing to do, find a project that you can devote your time in.
It can be knitting, carpentry, makeup, vlogging, techie skills or cooking – the choice is yours. You can even start reading or maybe start organizing your entire house. Keeping yourself busy will help you keep your mind off having alcohol or drugs.
Find a support group
Being physically away from people can take a toll on your mental health, especially if you’re used to being surrounded by friends, coworkers, and family. If you find yourself spending time alone most of the day, try to reach out to people even virtually. Staying connected with supportive people will help remind you that you’re not alone in your struggle.
If you are regularly going to AA or support group meetings before the pandemic, you can still do so by joining virtual meetings. There are several AA Zoom meetings you can join into even if you’re in the comforts of your own home.
Being anxious all the time can push you to just get a bottle of beer and drown your worries. Some may resort to prescription meds like Xanax to calm down, but doing so could also have adverse effects and you could be addicted.
If you’re looking for ways on how to cure anxiety during a pandemic, try natural methods instead of using alcohol or drugs. Simple activities like meditation, aromatherapy, listening to music, and getting enough sleep could help.
Get professional help
If you feel that you cannot stay sober on your own and you need help, it is always recommended to seek out professional treatment. While many businesses have halted their operations, the Lighthouse Group continues to accept in-patient clients during the pandemic.
We at the Lighthouse are enforcing strict Covid-19 protocols to ensure that our current residents, staff, and potential clients will remain safe and healthy during these uncertain times.
If you or a loved one is struggling with substance abuse, help is available.
Contact Anaheim Lighthouse today.