We talk a lot in recovery about taking care of the holistic self- mind, body, and spirit. In order to stay sober and continue living along a path of lifelong recovery, it is important to take care of yourself in each of these areas so you live a balanced life of wellness. There isn’t a lot of emphasis placed on the fact that all of these lifestyle changes, health practices, and wellness tools really go back to the brain. Recovery has to do with the brain, 100%. If you don’t work on changing your brain, you don’t work on changing your life. “Neuroscience” is the blanket scientific term used to describe the way that different things interact with the brain. The brain is the hub of life. When the brain shuts off completely, life ends. When the brain is damaged, life changes significantly. This is why addicts and alcoholics have to work so hard to “retrain” their brains in so many different ways. Drugs and alcohol severely impact the brain when they are abused in high quantities. More than dopamine production and altering the brain’s reward system, the way the brain functions in every sense is chemically altered by drugs and alcohol. Put into perspective, it is pretty severe. The main operating system, the squishy thing between your ears which helps you make decisions, learn how to feel, and even choose to stay sober, gets damaged by drug and alcohol abuse. Relapse prevention tools, stress management, emotional regulation, and physical wellness are all important because they all lead back to the brain. If you aren’t convinced that you need to do these things for your mental health, literally, Mindful has some great information as to why you should.

Mindfulness Meditation Literally Reduces Stress Because Fear

The amygdala is where fear and anxiety is created, according to different brain imaging studies. Mindfulness and meditation (and mindfulness meditation) is proven to reduce activity in the amygdala, even in the face of stress. That means when you practice mindfulness and/or meditation you are literally changing the way the amygdala reacts to stress.

Exercises Literally Makes You Happier

Exercises produces a bunch of happy hormones, which are chemicals in the body. Endorphins are the hormones which create that exercise “high”. Exercise also releases serotonin, which is a major factor in regulating happy feelings. When you exercise you are literally helping your brain produce more happiness.

Fellowshipping Literally Keeps You Sane

All that talk about isolating being bad for you isn’t because it leads you to relapse, though that’s definitely a problem. Social interactions are like lubrication for your brain, which it absolutely needs. Staying socially engaged on a regular basis can prevent the development of dementia and alzheimer’s.

 

Sound Recovery Solutions offers proven partial care programs designed to bring addicts and alcoholics to a practical solution in their lives. Clinical therapy, holistic healing, leadership training, and personal development help our clients grow into a lifetime of recovery. For more information, call (561) 666-7427.

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