Scottsdale Rehab Centers Encourage Connection To A Strong Support System During A Pandemic
It seems we’ve seen a new definition of the word ‘isolation’ with the COVID-19 pandemic. We’re alone, yes. But we’re not, in that we have so much technology and virtual ‘reality’ that we have access to that can keep us connected. Still, maintaining a support system during a pandemic when you’re going through recovery is challenging. Scottsdale rehab centers like Desert Cove Recovery know that keeping connected is key.
Addiction Brings Disconnects And Natural Isolation
The reality is that when you are struggling with substance abuse or addiction, you are already isolated. Your actions and behaviors have likely changed, and that most often means your relationships and interactions with your support system have changed as well. In active addiction, even if you’re not physically alone, you often feel that way. Connection with your support system seems disjointed at best, and you’re always fearful that it may disappear.
But in a pandemic, isolation is taken to a whole new level because you truly are alone more often than not. Social distancing is literally the distancing of yourself from others. For you and many others, this has been an abrupt and blunt disconnect from the strong support systems you’ve been able to create and maintain.
Rehabilitation experts realized from the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic that social distancing and isolation could be particularly difficult for those going through recovery. In March of 2020, Dr. Elinore F. McCance-Katz, MD, PhD announced options for those needing emotional help. She recommended that people contact the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) Disaster Distress Hotline. Noting that isolation could increase anxiety, worry, or insomnia, she recommended the line as a way for people to find recovery and coping strategies. 1
Maintaining a key support system is crucial for a successful recovery from addiction. You may find that many of the resources you turned to for support during recovery (going to the gym, local volunteering, and even in-person recovery meetings are no longer options). Remembering why you want to get sober and stay sober is the first step to maintaining recovery. Maintaining a positive support system is also imperative.
Maintaining A Positive Support System During A Pandemic
So how do you maintain a positive support system when you’re socially distancing and businesses and organizations are limited with their in-person services? Thankfully, Scottsdale rehab centers like Desert Cove recognize this importance and have several ways you can continue to find strength in your support system during a pandemic.
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1. Engage in regular meetings virtually.
Scottsdale rehab centers are aware of the tremendous challenges you face as you try to keep connected. Virtual meetings are not optimal, no, but during a pandemic when it’s important you maintain a support system? They’re vital.
Local and national organizations offer both self-help and community-based meetings now, as we’ve learned that virtual platforms are a must. Even if it’s only virtually, connecting with your recovery groups can help you feel less isolated and more connected during this trying time.
2. Take advantage of outpatient services.
Scottsdale rehab centers like Desert Cove recognize the benefits of intensive outpatient and standard outpatient treatment fully. That’s what they do best, actually, as the truth of addiction is that you need to learn to cope and live in ‘the real world.’ You will not always have access to the protective confines of a traditional inpatient program. These services may include holistic outdoor programs like equine therapy. Desert Cove Recovery offers you a number of one-on-one sponsor interactions to help you feel actively supported.
3. Volunteer to help others.
In a global pandemic, service and volunteerism are needed more than ever. Particularly for the elderly generation, isolation is a serious issue. When you’re in recovery, serving others who may also be isolated and needing services like errands run or basic companionship (safely and socially appropriate) can be a win-win. In a pandemic, you may find your support system branches out differently than it might otherwise, but there’s so much empowerment to overcome when you have a ‘helper’ mindset and serve others.
4. Explore new hobbies.
It may seem unlikely that you’d ever be at this place. Finding a new, unique hobby not only allows you to indulge in an interest, but it also opens up new people for interaction and support.
Do birds fascinate you? Your community bird watchers may be gathering safely at the local park and fellowshipping. Did you love Legos as a kid? Now might be the time to get back to brick-building and share with online (and possibly in-person) community groups. Always wanted to learn to kayak? There’s a whole world of people who find joy in that as well.
Exploring new hobbies doesn’t just distract you from cravings and triggers. It opens new neural pathways as well, and that’s brain beneficial, pandemic or not.
5. Connect spiritually.
Whether it’s your local church or some other spiritual community organization, consider reaching out. Connection is a foundation of spiritual relationships, and these organizations are working hard to ensure participants feel supported and engaged. Now might be the time you look into meditation or where your spiritual journey may want to go.
6. Maintain addiction recovery support.
As we’ve said—it’s essential to continue accessing the available professional help services. Whether it’s a national Disaster Distress hotline or your local Scottsdale rehab center, mental health and addiction recovery are available through telehealth, virtual, text, and phone platforms. Don’t dismiss them because they’re a bit different than a traditional recovery approach.
Get Help from a Trusted Scottsdale Rehab
Maintaining a support system during a pandemic is hard, but not impossible. Nearly every service and organization you can imagine has learned how to live in this ‘virtual’ world. That’s particularly true for Desert Cove Recovery, as we’ve always specialized in standard and intensive outpatient treatment options.
We know recovery is hard, and recovery by yourself is near impossible. We want to work with you to create and maintain a support system to take you into sobriety and keep you there. Contact us today, and let us work together to help you recover from the inside out.