Tag Archive: stress

  1. How to Know if the Stress is Too Much

    Leave a Comment


    Stress occurs when the individual perceives that demands placed on them — such as work, school or relationships — exceed their ability to cope. Not all stress is a bad thing. A little bit of stress can keep the individual alert, motivated and ready to respond to threat. Whether it’s preparing for a job interview or getting out of the way of a speeding car, it’s stress that gets the job done. However, unregulated stress can take its toll on the body and brain. A lot of repeated stress has been linked to conditions like heart disease, diabetes, stroke, high blood pressure, anxiety, chronic pain and depression, among others. So how can stress be identified?

    Identifying Stress

    It is important to deal with stress, but it can be tricky to identify whether what the individual is feeling is stress or something else. This can be difficult because stress is subjective and reveals itself differently in different people. Some common signs of stress may be:

    • Shallow breathing.
    • Tensed body, like hunched shoulders and stiff neck. Clenching of the fists and jaw.
    • Skin break outs. Stress raises the levels of cortisol in the body which boosts oil production in the skin and can result in acne and blemishes.
    • Fatigue.
    • Difficulty sleeping.
    • Constantly worrying.
    • Physically shaky.
    • Thinning hair. Stress can cause the body to put a halt on hair growth.
    • More than usual use of substances like alcohol, tobacco and drugs.
    • Feeling feverish. Psychological stress can raise body temperature.
    • Grinding teeth while sleeping.
    • Brittle nails.
    • Troubled digestive tract, suffering from constipation, indigestion or diarrhea.
    • Feeling restless and fidgety.
    • Difficulty in decision making.
    • Trouble concentrating and thinking clearly.
    • Very emotional.
    • Feeling unhappy without any real cause.
    • Changes in eating patterns.  

    Tips to Manage Stress

    What is the individual to do when they are stressed? Dealing with stress is an individual pursuit, just like stress itself is subjective. Some techniques to reduce stress are:

    • Take a break – The individual should give themselves permission to step away from whatever it is that’s stressing them out. Doing something else, even for a short amount of time, will allow the individual to feel less overwhelmed.
    • Exercise – There are multiple benefits to exercise for the mind as well as the body. A short walk or run, pool time, yoga class, any form of exercise in the midst of a stressful time can immediately calm the individual down and keep them calm for several hours.
    • Social support – It can often help to call a friend, or send an email to a loved one. Sharing one’s concerns or feelings with another person can help relieve stress.
    • Meditate – One of the most popular ways to relieve stress, mindful meditation can help the mind and body to relax. Meditation can help release emotions that the individual has been holding on to which is causing them stress. Similar to exercising, even brief meditation sessions can reap immediate benefits.

    Stress can’t be eliminated, but it can be identified, and by finding positive and healthy ways to deal with it, can be managed.


    Sustain Recovery offers extended stay treatment programs for adolescents. Learn to deal with stress and other issues in a safe, structured environment. Call us to find out more.

  2. Avoiding Relapse During Crisis

    Leave a Comment

    Avoiding Relapse During CrisisRecovery is a process of gaining the awareness, tools, mindfulness, and skills to maintain sobriety through any of life’s circumstances. Life is not always easy. That is why one of the mantras in recovery mentions learning to “live life on life’s terms.” One of the alcoholic’s and addict’s primary struggles is the marked inability to cope with living life itself. Life is full of difficulties, challenges, responsibility, and pain. On the other hand, life is full of beauty, love, purity, celebration, and joy.

    A relapse will typically occur as a result of two things. First, is neglecting to place recovery first. Minimizing meeting attendance, not participating in therapy, or refusing to attend group results in spiritual deprivation. Recovery is maintained by staying spiritually fit. All the components of a comprehensive recovery program are geared toward developing and sustaining a manner of spiritual living. Correlating to a lack of spiritual centeredness is the adverse response to stresses or crises. Without that spiritual foundation for living developed through recovery, young adult addicts find themselves lacking in resource to handle what comes their way.  They turn to the patterns of behavior and action which comes most naturally to them: get drunk and get high. Using and drinking as a solution to life’s problems is the most innate programming an adolescent in early recovery has. They’ve only just begun to learn how to react differently. When we drop the tools we’ve learned to pick up, it’s easy to forget how to access them. Right when we need them most, we find ourselves in a struggle of choices.

    Every difficult situation presents opportunities for growth, development, and change. In fact, the “serenity prayer” often used in recovery advocates for meeting stress with exactly this philosophy. We ask for the serenity to accept what cannot be changed, the courage to change what can be changed, and the wisdom to know the difference between the two. Most wise, of course, is choosing not to return to drugs and alcohol as a way of responding to crisis in life.


    Recovering adolescents suffering from addiction will learn to develop many other tools  for managing relapse prevention. Sustain Recovery Services in southern California provides extended care services to young adults and adolescents in recovery from drugs and alcohol. We offer a comprehensive and structured program as a foundation for building a life of long term sobriety. Please visit our website or call us at 949-407-9052 for more information.

I first met Sayeh in November of 2013 just after my 15 year old daughter had been admitted to a residential treatment program. As part of the program I was required to attend 2-3 AlAnon meetings a week. Sayeh attended the same AlAnon meetings as well as Alumni events as I. It soon became apparent to me that Sayeh had a heart for recovery, program, and God. When I was encouraged to get a sponsor I didn’t hesitate. Dependable, respectful, kind and generous of spirit, she exudes an inner peace that I hope to achieve with her loving guidance, as I work my own program. She is patient, & full of wisdom that she is always happy to share with her sponsees and fellow parents. I am so grateful our journeys brought us together.

© 2019 OCTLC Inc.