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Monday, December 6, 2021

Definition of Sobriety | Sober Meaning

definition of sobriety

Definition of Sobriety

The dictionary definition of sobriety is “the state of being sober,” and the dictionary definition of sober is “not drunk or affected by alcohol, free from alcoholism, not a habitual drinker; serious, staid, muted, solemn, and/or sensible.” Which is fine for covering all bases if your interest in sobriety is purely scholarly; but if you have personal investment in finding freedom from alcoholism (or any other addiction), sobriety is better understood as a mindset and a way of life.


Let’s take a closer look at the “sobriety” aspects listed above.


Not Drunk

Even the most alcohol-dependent achieve this particular state of sobriety on a regular basis, so it’s of limited use in determining when alcohol is a problem for any individual. While frequent “drunken” episodes are certainly reasonable cause to suspect addiction, many people who never seem drunk are nonetheless addicted. (See next point.) And even someone who isn’t strictly impaired may have consumed enough alcohol to adversely affect performance.


Not Affected by Alcohol

This form of “sobriety” sounds like a good thing, but often it’s a red flag. People with addiction, or alcohol abuse disorder, have built up physical tolerance for “normal” amounts of alcohol, so they are more able to consume large amounts without obvious effects.


Not a Habitual Drinker

Since “habitual” is a subjective term, this is a poor criterion for judging who is living in an overall state of sobriety and who isn’t. It’s a common myth that everyone with alcoholism drinks daily: in fact, there’s a subcategory of alcohol dependence characterized by drinking primarily on weekends. Almost any drinker who is embarrassed to share details, or can’t imagine skipping a regular drink for anything, has a toxic habit regardless of actual drinking patterns.


Serious, Staid, Muted, Solemn

Sadly, regardless of context, many people hear the same negative implications in all the above words: dull, colorless, no fun, less than happy, even living under a cloud of depression. Which is how too many people with addiction visualize a future of physical sobriety: however miserable their lives may be when centered around the bottle, they fear a bleak, comfortless future should they stop drinking. Even after detoxing and starting down the sobriety path, most people are troubled for months by yearnings to “go back to Egypt” when life gets stressful and memory sees only the comfortable parts of the old slavery. Escaping this temptation requires advance planning, strong accountability—and a positive understanding of how fulfilling life can be without drugs. In reality, sobriety is an amazing chance to find a happier, more vibrant life.



The least negatively viewed of the synonyms for emotional sobriety, this can still seem less than desirable to those who favor excitement and challenge. Common sense doesn’t have to be incompatible with adventure, though. Common sense—or wisdom—is what creates a focused mindset for accomplishment, and keeps a legitimate drive for achievement/challenge/fulfillment from degenerating into pointless striving for instant gratification. By far the best way to approach a healthy challenge is through a purposeful approach that uses your experience and natural gifts to benefit the larger world—a principle alluded to in the last of the classic 12 Steps: “Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to [other] alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.”


Sobriety: Free From Alcoholism

The key word is “free,” which properly has not only positive but proactive connotations. There’s far more to sobriety, and to freedom, than the absence of the undesirable: a long-term lifestyle of true sobriety comprises multiple active elements.

  • It means accepting your circumstances and making the best of them.
  • It means taking responsibility for your actions and your life.
  • It means cultivating and contributing to meaningful relationships with your family, your friends, and your God.
  • It means taking care of yourself physically, emotionally, and spiritually.
  • It means discovering your purpose and working to achieve it through your goals, your vocation, and your relationships.
  • And it means becoming the best possible version of your uniquely created self, and living in faith that a clearheaded (sober) view of life includes confidence that things will work out for the best.


California Faith-Based Drug and Alcohol Addiction Treatment

Please contact Celebrate Hope to learn more about our faith-based addiction treatment program. Our team will help you break the cycle of addiction and discover the blessings of permanent sobriety. We rely on the teachings of Jesus Christ, along with evidence-based therapies to get individuals on the path of recovery.

Thursday, December 2, 2021

What is Wet Brain? Wernicke-Korsakoff Syndrome

wet brain

You’re probably familiar with some of the most common health problems caused by ongoing alcohol misuse. These include cirrhosis of the liver and certain forms of cancer. However, there are other, lesser-known conditions catalyzed by a lifetime of heavy drinking. Learn the symptoms, causes, and treatments of wet brain, or Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome.


Alcoholic Definition

First, it’s important to understand how medical professionals define alcohol use disorder. A person with this condition does not know when they should stop drinking. They also lack the ability to quit long-term, even if their alcohol use causes problems at work or at home.


Symptoms of alcoholism include:

  • Drinking when it is inappropriate or dangerous
  • Becoming unable to regulate the amount of alcohol consumed
  • Stashing alcohol in various places (to be consumed in secret)
  • Feeling irritable, nauseated, or shaky when unable to drink
  • Developing a tolerance

An estimated 15 million American adults have an alcohol problem – that’s over 6% of the population. Each year, the World Health Organization estimates that 3.3 million global deaths occur as a result of alcohol use. A number of these individuals probably suffer from wet brain.


Wet Brain

Wet brain is a shorthand for Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome. Sometimes, it’s referred to as Korsakoff’s psychosis or alcohol-related dementia. It occurs when someone drinks for a long time and develops a vitamin B1 (thiamine) deficiency. As a result, various structures of the brain are damaged, including the hypothalamus and the thalamus. This means that individuals with this condition are at risk of memory problems and lifelong brain damage.


People with drinking problems experience wet brain because alcohol prevents the body from properly absorbing vitamin B1, also called thiamine. Thiamine is a coenzyme that is crucial to the function of the brain’s metabolism. Without it, the body’s levels of acetate, citrate, acetylcholine, and alpha-keto-glutarate are dramatically lowered. That causes metabolic imbalances, which catalyze neurological complications and cell death.


A vitamin B1 deficiency results in two concurrent pathologies that combine as one syndrome: Wernicke encephalopathy and Korsakoff syndrome.


Wernicke Encephalopathy

This degenerative brain disorder is characterized by low blood pressure, hypothermia, vision problems, and even going into a coma. The three hallmark symptoms to look out for include:

  • Ophthalmoplegia – Paralysis of muscles around or within the eye,
  • Ataxia – Losing control of one’s movements, resulting in a stagger or tremors, and
  • Confusion – Delirium and disorientation.

If your loved one begins to complain about feeling mentally muddled, if you notice that they have developed tremors, or if they exhibit abnormal eye movements, they may have entered this first phase of wet brain syndrome. An estimated 90% of individuals with Wernicke encephalopathy will go on to develop Korsakoff syndrome.


Korsakoff Syndrome

The other half of wet brain is Korsakoff syndrome, which can be very upsetting for sufferers and their families. Its symptoms are:

  • Memory problems – Memory loss and inability to remember new things,
  • Hallucinations – Seeing and hearing things that are not there, and
  • Changes in mental acuity – Inventing events when they cannot remember, becoming disoriented and confused, and exhibiting changes in personality.

Family members usually pick up on this stage of wet brain after years of seeing their loved one abuse alcohol. For example, a parent may become easily frustrated and difficult, while also making up stories or lying. However, the alcoholic may not even realize that they have these symptoms.


The psychotic aspect of this condition is called Korsakoff psychosis, which is a type of dementia characterized by amnesia, changed behavior, and hallucinations.


Treating Wet Brain

If caught early enough, it is possible to reverse the effects of wet brain. However, if left untreated, symptoms often persist to the point of disability. This is why doctors refer to Wernicke-Korsakoff as a “potentially reversible” condition. The two steps to recovering from this disorder are:

  • Seeking appropriate medical care for thiamine supplementation (usually high doses provided intravenously), and
  • Addressing the person’s underlying alcohol use disorder.

Abstaining from alcohol is a critical component of stopping the progression of wet brain. For those who have been drinking heavily enough to develop this condition, this is not something that should be attempted without support. Alcohol detox can be painful and potentially life-threatening. This is why it is recommended that people seek rehabilitation in a supervised setting.


Celebrate Hope provides a Biblically rooted, Christ-centered approach to healing. From our homey facility in Orange County, our staff provides a compassionate and restorative environment for those in need of treatment. We offer medical detox, residential and outpatient services, gender-specific programs, and long-term care. To learn more about Celebrate Hope, we invite you to contact our admissions team. They will be happy to answer any questions you may have about treatment for alcohol use disorder, wet brain, and more.

Monday, November 22, 2021

Why Do We Celebrate Thanksgiving?

gratitude in recovery

You may know the usual story of Thanksgiving. In 1621, the Plymouth colonists joined with the Wampanoag Native Americans to share an autumn harvest feast and that was the beginning of our traditional Thanksgiving celebration. The event became a national holiday in 1863, when President Abraham Lincoln declared it so, in the midst of the nation’s Civil War. In recovery, though, why do we celebrate Thanksgiving? Why do we count our blessings as we recover from an addiction?

Counting Blessings

How do you count your blessings at Thanksgiving and throughout the year? Going through treatment for an addiction to drugs or alcohol is not easy. You may have struggled to overcome your addiction, particularly if you had been living in addiction for some time. Knowing that you are now on your journey to recovery, though, is a huge blessing in your life.

One of the best ways to show your gratitude is through prayer. Expressing thanks through prayer reminds you of the blessings you are enjoying in recovery. Prayers of gratitude have also been linked to positive health outcomes. Mostly, prayer shows that you acknowledge your blessings as you live your life in recovery.

How Do You Celebrate Thanksgiving?

Beyond the meal and possible family gathering, there are many ways to practice “thanksgiving” in a real and meaningful sense in recovery. You can express thanks for simply being alive. In addition to prayer, spend some time each day meditating on the positive things that are going on in your life now. Do you have shelter and food? Are you making progress toward moving your life forward in a positive way?

Do you have a supportive network of friends and family members? Do you have the support of your treatment professionals? Express your thanks to these individuals in person or with a written note of gratitude. You can even “pay it forward,” expressing your gratitude to those who have helped you by doing something that will help another individual.

Consider what your life was like in addiction. Then focus on the positive of what your life is like now, in recovery. When you have the opportunity to walk in the fresh air and enjoy the beauty that surrounds you, say a prayer of thanksgiving. When you are able to sleep through the night and feel rested the next morning, express your gratitude on awakening. When you can enjoy a meal, such as a Thanksgiving feast, with supportive family and friends, tell each of them how much you appreciate them.

Gratitude in Recovery

Gratitude is one of the foundational principles of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). One of the Daily Reflections reads, “It is very important to keep in a grateful frame of mind if we want to stay sober.” Stories in the Big Book include one called “Gratitude in Action.” The social support encouraged by AA, which helps you develop important bonds in recovery, is formed by gratitude. Giving thanks can actually help keep you sober.

When you celebrate thanksgiving in its true sense recovery by expressing your gratitude to God and to those individuals who help and support you, you change the negative thinking that used to be a big part of your life in your addiction. Your sense of well-being is improved. You stop comparing yourself to other people and focus on the positives in your life now.

Benefits of Gratitude

There are many mental, physical, and emotional benefits of giving thanks. When you celebrate thanksgiving by showing your gratitude daily, you will see measurable positive effects on your life in recovery.

Being thankful can boost your immune system. When you are positive and focus on your overall sense of well-being, you reduce your stress level. That stress has been shown to lower your immune response but increased mental well-being can help you fight off illnesses. Practicing gratitude has even been shown to potentially reduce the risks associated with diseases such as heart failure.

Gratitude can improve your mental health. One study has shown that expressing thanks for the positives in your life can help ease the symptoms of depression and anxiety. Gratitude has been linked to improved mood overall, as giving thanks fosters positive feelings and contributes to a sense of well-being.

California Faith-Based Drug Addiction Treatment

Please contact Celebrate Hope to learn more about our faith-based addiction treatment program. Our team helps men and women break the cycle of addiction and begin anew, moving their life forward in a recovery filled with gratitude for their newfound blessings. We rely on the teachings of Jesus Christ, along with evidence-based therapies to get individuals on the path of recovery.

Wednesday, November 10, 2021

Trauma Definition

trauma types, symptoms, and treatment

The term PTSD is often used to describe the trauma that members of the military experience in battle. PTSD is post-traumatic stress disorder, which is a mental health condition that can affect anyone who has been through a trauma. A trauma definition includes a description of its types, symptoms, and treatment options.

Trauma – Physical and Emotional

Trauma can be used in regard to physical health, meaning the individual has experienced a physical injury. In regard to mental health, the trauma definition refers to an emotional response to a deeply disturbing or distressing event. An individual suffering the effects of trauma could have experienced the sudden loss of a loved one, experienced or witnessed a violent act, or been in an accident or a natural disaster. Many people who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic also feel the effects of that traumatic experience.

Trauma Types and Symptoms

Someone who has experienced trauma may respond with extreme grief, may be in denial, or may be in a state of shock in the immediate and short-term period after the event. Trauma can also result in longer-term reactions, including flashbacks, impulsiveness, unsteady emotions, and strained relationships. Physical symptoms of trauma can include nausea, lethargy, and headaches. The long-term trauma symptoms can lead to a diagnosis of PTSD.

There are three main types of trauma: acute, chronic, and complex.

Acute Trauma

Acute trauma typically results from a single event that is extreme enough to threaten the individual’s physical or emotional security. Acute trauma can result from an accident, a rape, an assault, or a natural disaster. This event will create a lasting impression on the person’s mind to the extent that it could affect the way they behave and think. Acute trauma symptoms generally include:

  • Confusion
  • Irritation
  • Excessive anxiety or panic
  • Sleep difficulties
  • Lack of self-care or grooming
  • Feeling disconnected
  • Inability to focus on work or studies
  • Unreasonable lack of trust
  • Aggressive behavior

Chronic Trauma

When an individual is exposed to multiple, long-term, or prolonged traumatic events over an extended period of time, they can suffer from chronic trauma. Events that can cause chronic trauma include a long-term serious illness, domestic violence, exposure to extreme situations such as a war, sexual abuse, and bullying. When multiple events of acute trauma occur or if acute trauma remains untreated, it can progress to chronic trauma.

Chronic trauma symptoms can appear years after the event or series of events and are deeply distressing to the individual. These symptoms can include anxiety, extreme anger, unpredictable emotional outbursts, fatigue, body aches and headaches, and flashbacks. The person experiencing chronic trauma can have trust issues that can cause problems in their relationships and their job.

Complex Trauma

An individual who feels trapped because of exposure to multiple traumatic events that fall within the context of an interpersonal relationship can experience complex trauma. This type of trauma often results from neglect, domestic violence, abuse, family disputes and repetitive and continuing stressful situations such as civil unrest. Complex trauma can have a severe impact on the individual’s mental health, also affecting overall health as well as relationships and performance at school or work.

Trauma Treatment

Understanding how to cope with trauma can be critical to an individual’s mental and physical health. Seeking professional treatment is the first step. Additional steps to better cope with the effects of traumatic events can include:

  • Understanding that symptoms experienced immediately after the trauma may be normal, depending on the situation and the severity of the symptoms.
  • Keeping to a regular routine.
  • Taking time to resolve conflicts as they occur so they do not add to the stress level experienced from the trauma.
  • Finding healthy, positive ways to practice self-care, to relax, and to reduce stress and anxiety.
  • Turning to a support network of trusted family members and friends as someone to talk to about experiences and feelings resulting from the trauma.

California Faith-Based Mental Health and Addiction Treatment

Celebrate Hope is here for you when you need help with mental health issues such as trauma and PTSD, particularly when they co-occur with addiction. Please contact Celebrate Hope to learn more about our faith-based dual diagnosis treatment program. Our team helps men and women address the vicious cycle of mental illness and addiction so they can begin life anew. We rely on the teachings of Jesus Christ, along with evidence-based therapies to get individuals on the path of recovery.

Thursday, October 28, 2021

How to Pray for Someone in Recovery

praying in recovery

When someone you care about is going through recovery from an addiction to drugs or alcohol, you want to do everything you can to help them. While you can be there for them emotionally and physically, praying for them is a powerful way to support them. There are some key points to remember when you want to know how to pray for someone in recovery.

Find Strength in Your Helplessness

You may feel helpless as you watch your loved one go through addiction treatment. You want to do what you can to help them, but you may not be sure what that should be. Your helplessness can actually be one of the keys for how to pray for someone in recovery. People tend to want to tell God what needs to be done and when. Instead, remain silent in your helplessness and put your trust in God as you pray. You can’t fix everything, but you know you can trust in God.

Focus on Trust

Your loved one is learning how to trust a higher power in recovery. As you pray for them, do the same for yourself. Recovery happens with God’s help. You can also pray for the addiction treatment professionals who are guiding your loved one through their recovery. At the same time, trust that those professionals will do what’s right to help your loved one overcome their addiction in a healthy and successful way.

Let Your Loved One Know

Sometimes, just knowing that someone is praying for you can be powerful in itself. Send your loved one a written note letting them know you are praying for them in recovery. By doing so, you’re acknowledging the powerful force of God. You’re also encouraging them to put their trust in God and to continue praying for help themselves as they go through their addiction treatment program. Re-embrace hope through prayer for yourself and for your loved one.

Healing in Prayer

It can be helpful to remember scripture passages as you pray for someone in recovery. In particular, James says:

“Is anyone among you in trouble? Let them pray. Is anyone happy? Let them sing songs of praise. Is anyone among you sick? Let them call the elders of the church to pray over them and anoint them with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have sinned, they will be forgiven” (James 5:13-15).

Praying in faith is reassuring to you and your loved one. You know that when you put your faith and trust in God, you are responding to the promises in his word. You know that your prayers are heard.

It can also be helpful to ask others around you, the “elders of the church” as well as friends and family, members to pray for your loved one in recovery. Encourage them to also send positive notes, letting your loved one know they are in their prayers.

A Prayer of Power

Even though you may feel powerless, you know that God is powerful and capable of providing the help your loved one needs in recovery from their addiction. In prayer, you are bringing your loved one before God and asking for the power of a healing touch. You are also being appreciative for the forgiveness of sin and the promise of eternal healing for yourself as well as for your loved one.

A Prayer of Strength

When you feel helpless, watching your loved one struggle with addiction and the challenges of recovery, remember where your strength lies. As the scripture in Psalms reminds us:

“I lift up my eyes to the mountains—where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth. He will not let your foot slip—he who watches over you will not slumber; indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep” (Psalm 121:1-4).

As you pray for someone in recovery, take comfort in God’s strength, that even though you and your loved one may be overcome by sadness and fear, God does not sleep and is always there with the strength you both need.

California Faith-Based Drug Addiction Treatment

To get help overcoming drug addiction, please contact Celebrate Hope to learn more about our faith-based addiction treatment program. Our team helps men and women break the cycle of addiction and begin anew. We rely on the teachings of Jesus Christ, along with evidence-based therapies to get individuals on the path of recovery.

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Bible Verses About Depression | What Does the Bible Say About Sadness?

what the Bible says about sadness

Sometimes your sadness is something more. October is designated as National Depression and Mental Health Screening Month, a time to learn more about symptoms you may be experiencing. In your sadness as well as in the longer lasting mental health condition of depression, you can find hope to help you through your day. It can be uplifting to know what the Bible says about sadness and to read Bible verses about depression.

Know You Are Not Alone

One of the most important messages you can find in Bible verses about depression is that you are not alone and that you can find the peace you need. There is nothing to fear when you have faith.

“The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” --Deuteronomy 31:8

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” --John 16:33

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” --Joshua 1:9

“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” --Isaiah 41:10

“For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” — Romans 8:38-39

You Have the Strength You Need

The Bible says that you can have strength you need to overcome your challenges, even in your sadness and depression.

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” --Philippians 4:13

“The Lord is a stronghold for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.” --Psalm 9:9

“The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.” --Psalm 34:18

“Casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.” --1 Peter 5:7

“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” -- Matthew 11:28-30

Hope and Healing are Here

Bible verses about depression and sadness reassure you that you always have the healing power of hope, and help is always near.

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.” -- Romans 15:13

“Answer me quickly, O Lord! My spirit fails! Hide not your face from me, lest I be like those who go down to the pit. Let me hear in the morning of your steadfast love, for in you I trust. Make me know the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul.” -- Psalm 143:7-8

“He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” -- Psalm 147:3

“Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.” -- Psalm 42:11

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.” -- Proverbs 3:5-6

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” -- Philippians 4:6-7

California Faith-Based Mental Health and Addiction Treatment

Celebrate Hope is here for you when you need help with mental health issues such as depression, particularly when it co-occurs with addiction. Please contact Celebrate Hope to learn more about our faith-based dual diagnosis treatment program. Our team helps men and women address the vicious cycle of mental illness and addiction so they can begin life anew. We rely on the teachings of Jesus Christ, along with evidence-based therapies to get individuals on the path of recovery.

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

What Does the Bible Say About Fear?

Bible verses about fear

An addiction to drugs or alcohol can be a scary situation for you. The thought of seeking treatment can also be a bit frightening, as you know it will mean a life change. Even when you know something is for the better, it can still be unsettling and make you anxious. Take heart in knowing that help is here for you, in all aspects of your life. You can rely on some comforting words to get you through when you know what the Bible says about fear.

Staying Strong

You can find strength in these words about fear in the Bible. That strength can guide you as you seek addiction treatment and work toward a successful recovery.

“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." -- Isaiah 41:10

“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way, though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble at its swelling.” -- Psalm 46:1–3

“Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” -- Joshua 1:9

A New Happiness

Overcoming fear can give you a new sense of happiness, as can overcoming your addiction to drugs or alcohol.

“Fear not, O land; be glad and rejoice, for the LORD has done great things!" -- Joel 2:21

“I sought the Lord, and he answered me and delivered me from all my fears. Those who look to him are radiant, and their faces shall never be ashamed.” -- Psalm 34:4–5

Moving Forward Without Fear

The Bible reassures you that with faith, you no longer need to fear anything or anyone. You can take the steps necessary to overcome your addiction without fear.  

“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” -- Psalm 27:1

“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” -- Psalm 23:4

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” -- Philippians 4:6-7

"You came near when I called on you; you said, ‘Do not fear!’" -- Lamentations 3:57

A Sense of Comfort

The Bible tells you that not only do you no longer have to be afraid, but you can take comfort in knowing you have an ever-present help in your life.

"But now thus says the LORD, he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel: 'Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.' " -- Isaiah 43:1

"For I, the LORD your God, hold your right hand; it is I who say to you, “Fear not, I am the one who helps you.” -- Isaiah 41:13

“When I am afraid, I put my trust in you."  -- Psalm 56:3

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” -- Luke 14:27

“Be strong and courageous.  Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.” -- Deuteronomy 31:6

“Then you will walk on your way securely, and your foot will not stumble. If you lie down, you will not be afraid; when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.” -- Proverbs 3:23–24

California Faith-Based Drug Addiction Treatment

There is no need to fear the positive change that will come in your life when you seek help for your addiction. Please contact Celebrate Hope to learn more about our faith-based addiction treatment program. Our team helps men and women break the cycle of addiction and begin anew. We rely on the teachings of Jesus Christ, along with evidence-based therapies to get individuals on the path of recovery.

Tuesday, September 7, 2021

Is Anxiety Hereditary? | Genetic Anxiety

genetic anxiety

When in a new situation or facing a particularly challenging time in your life, it is natural to be a little anxious about it. You may be worried about making a favorable impression at an interview or concerned about getting to know neighbors in a new town. However, if those feelings of worry or fear do not go away or become worse, you could have an anxiety disorder. Is anxiety hereditary?

Types of Anxiety Disorders

There are several different types of anxiety disorders. Excessive worry about everyday things such as health, work, routine life events, and social interactions are part of generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). The intense fear can cause serious issues in the individual’s daily activities at work, school, and in personal relationships.

Panic disorder is another type of anxiety disorder. Individuals who have sudden periods of intense fear that come on quickly may have panic disorder. Recurrent unexpected panic attacks occur unexpectedly. They can also be brought on a particular situation or object that is feared by the individual.

When someone has a phobia, they have an intense fear of situations or objects that typically do not present any real danger to them. A phobia can be a fear of closed spaces, large gatherings of people, heights, or something else that the individual feels is a threat to their health and safety.

Anxiety Symptoms

Symptoms will vary, depending on the type of anxiety and the person experiencing it. Some people have nightmares or painful thoughts they can’t control. Some have a general feeling of worry or fear. Symptoms of general anxiety include restlessness, trouble concentrating, rapid breathing, increased heart rate, and difficulty falling asleep.

Is Anxiety Hereditary?

Anxiety disorders are among the most common mental health disorders. The specific cause of anxiety, like many other such disorders, is unknown. Research on families and twins have determined that both genetics and environment are factors in whether an individual develops anxiety. The studies found that the heritability of the disorder to be at 30% to 50%.

Anxiety is considered to be partially genetic, meaning it can be hereditary, but family can influence the onset of an anxiety disorder in many different ways. If a family member had an anxiety disorder, it increases the possibility that you will also have the condition. However, it doesn’t mean you are destined to inherit it.

Nature and Nurture

Your life experiences, including your family environment, can also play a role in whether you will develop an anxiety disorder. The heritability rate cited by researchers means that if a member of your family, including parents, aunts, uncles, and grandparents, have the condition, your chances of inheriting genetic anxiety increase. Scientists have found that genes located on chromosome 9 are associated with anxiety.

Researchers also recognize the importance of nurture, the environment in which you grew up, in determining certain types of illness that affect both physical and mental health. Other factors in your life, including traumatic experiences as a child or a young adult, also have an impact on your potential for developing an anxiety disorder.

You may have had a particularly frightening experience involving being trapped in a tight space, for example, and that could very well contribute to a phobia known as claustrophobia. With this fear of tight spaces becoming more significant as you age, you will find that you try to avoid such situations completely.

Your family can also influence your mental health in other ways. Parents model certain behaviors for their children, intentionally or not. If a parent does not enjoy social interactions, they may avoid engaging with others in a social setting. A child growing up in this environment may find that they start to also avoid social events and that behavior could develop into social anxiety as they grow up.

California Faith-Based Mental Health and Addiction Treatment

Celebrate Hope is here for you when you need help with mental health issues, such as an anxiety disorder, particularly when it co-occurs with addiction. Please contact Celebrate Hope to learn more about our faith-based dual diagnosis treatment program. Our team helps men and women address the vicious cycle of mental illness and addiction so they can begin life anew. We rely on the teachings of Jesus Christ, along with evidence-based therapies to get individuals on the path of recovery.

Tuesday, August 24, 2021

Bible Verses About Hope | Addiction Recovery

addiction recovery

Faith and hope are integral to your recovery from an addiction to drugs or alcohol. It is easy to get discouraged when you are battling a substance use issue, but you know that you are not alone in your struggles. There are many Bible verses about hope that can reassure you and give you renewed focus on your addiction recovery.

Renew Your Strength

Lean on your faith as you move forward with your addiction recovery, finding strength and hope in these messages.

“But those who hope in the Lord
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint.” -- Isaiah 40:31

“The Lord will keep you from all harm—
he will watch over your life;
the Lord will watch over your coming and going
both now and forevermore.” -- Psalm 121:7-8

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” -- Matthew 11:28

“You are my refuge and my shield; I have put my hope in your word.” -- Psalm 119:114

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in faith so that you overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” -- Romans 15:13

Find Comfort and Patience

Addiction treatment is not easy, but you have what you need to overcome your doubts when you have faith and hope.

“For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope.” -- Romans 15:4

“And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.” -- Romans 5:2-5

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” -- Jeremiah 29:11

“Why, I ask myself, are you so depressed? Why are you so upset inside? Hope in God! Because I will again give him thanks, my saving presence and my God.” -- Psalm 42:11

Move Forward in an Authentic Life

Your faith and hope can help you move forward in your addiction recovery, as you lean on the comforting words found in the many Bible verses about hope.

“Indeed there is hope for a tree. If it’s cut down and still sprouting and its shoots don’t fail, if its roots age in the ground and its stump dies in the dust, at the scent of water, it will bud and produce sprouts like a plant.” -- Job 14:7-9

“And all who have this hope in him purify themselves even as he is pure.” -- 1 John 3:3

“I pray that the eyes of your heart will have enough light to see what is the hope of God’s call, what is the richness of God’s glorious inheritance among believers, and what is the overwhelming greatness of God’s power that is working among us believers. This power is conferred by the energy of God’s powerful strength.” -- Ephesians 1:18-19

“Let’s hold on to the confession of our hope without wavering, because the one who made the promises is reliable.” -- Hebrews 10:23

“Oh, I must find rest in God only, because my hope comes from him! Only God is my rock and my salvation — my stronghold! — I will not be shaken.” -- Psalm 62:5–6

“Our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father loved us and through grace gave us eternal comfort and a good hope. May he encourage your hearts and give you strength in every good thing you do or say.” -- 2 Thessalonians 2:16–17

California Faith-Based Drug Addiction Treatment

To get help overcoming drug addiction, please contact Celebrate Hope to learn more about our faith-based addiction treatment program. Our team helps men and women break the cycle of addiction and begin anew. We rely on the teachings of Jesus Christ, along with evidence-based therapies to get individuals on the path of recovery.

Tuesday, August 10, 2021

Depression Test

depression screening

You may have been feeling a little down lately and are now wondering if it’s something more than just being sad. A depression test, or screening, can help determine whether your symptoms indicate a more serious mental health issue.

A Serious Mood Disorder

Depression can affect every aspect of your daily life. A serious mood disorder, it can impact how you think and feel as well as how you sleep, eat, or work. When you are suffering from depression, you can struggle with daily activities and have other symptoms, depending on the type of depression you have.

The different types of depression include:

  • Persistent depressive disorder – a depressed mood that lasts for more than two years. If you are diagnosed with this form of depression, you typically have episodes of major depression that may be interspersed by periods of less severe symptoms.
  • Psychotic depression – severe depression that is accompanied by some form of psychosis. You may experience delusions or hallucinations, for example. Your symptoms will usually have a depressive theme, such as having delusions of poverty, illness, or guilt.
  • Seasonal affective disorder – depression that usually occurs during the winter months. Typically, if you are diagnosed with this type of depression, your mood will lift somewhat during the spring and summer months when there is more natural sunlight. However, the depression will then return when the amount of daylight is reduced in the late fall and winter.
  • Postpartum depression – a depression that women experience after giving birth. More serious than “baby blues,” postpartum depression can occur during pregnancy and after delivery. A woman can experience extreme exhaustion, anxiety, and sadness, making it difficult for her to take care of herself and her baby.

Symptoms of Depression

A depression test will help you understand the symptoms you’ve been experiencing. If you have experienced any of these signs or symptoms for most of each day, almost every day, for the past two weeks or more, you may be suffering from depression:

  • Persistent sad, anxious, or “empty” mood
  • Feelings of hopelessness or pessimism
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in hobbies and activities
  • Irritability
  • Moving or talking more slowly
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering, or making decisions
  • Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, or helplessness
  • Decreased energy or fatigue
  • Feeling restless or having trouble sitting still
  • Difficulty sleeping, early-morning awakening, or oversleeping
  • Aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems without a clear physical cause and/or that do not ease even with treatment
  • Appetite and/or weight changes
  • Thoughts of death or suicide, or suicide attempts

If you are thinking about or have attempted suicide, or if you are thinking about hurting yourself, regardless of the reason, it is very important that you reach out for help immediately. You can call 911 or go to your local emergency room, or call your healthcare provider or mental health provider. You can also call the suicide hotline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255).

Depression Test

When you recognize these symptoms, it may be time for a screening for depression. A depression test can mean the difference in your mental health going forward. Knowing the cause behind your mood disorder is important so you can get the treatment you need. You can contact your healthcare professional or mental health provider to discuss the screening and to participate in the test.

As part of the depression test, your healthcare provider may also give you a complete physical exam, including a blood test, to rule out any medical reasons for your depression. For example, if you have anemia or a thyroid disease, you might experience depression as a symptom of that condition.

The depression test itself will consist of a serious of detailed questions about your feelings and behaviors. It is critical for you to answer these questions honestly. Your mental health provider will use this test to ensure you are receiving the appropriate level of care for your mood disorder.

California Faith-Based Mental Health and Addiction Treatment

Celebrate Hope is here for you when you need help with mental health issues, particularly when they co-occur with addiction. Please contact Celebrate Hope to learn more about our faith-based dual diagnosis treatment program. Our team helps men and women address the vicious cycle of mental illness and addiction so they can begin life anew. We rely on the teachings of Jesus Christ, along with evidence-based therapies to get individuals on the path of recovery.

Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Christian Intervention | How to Stage an Intervention

how to stage an intervention

You see your loved one struggling with an addiction and you want to help them. How do you start? What do you do? One of the best ways to guide your loved one to get the help they need is to stage an intervention. A Christian intervention can reassure your family member that you care about them and want them to move forward in a healthier life without drugs or alcohol.

Importance of an Intervention

You are concerned about your loved one’s lifestyle and how it affects their work, their relationships, and their finances. Addiction to drugs or alcohol can also have extremely serious consequences. In fact, over 70,000 people in the US died from a drug-involved overdose in 2019. Their overdoses resulted from abusing both illegal drugs and prescription opioids. In addition, approximately 88,000 individuals die each year from alcohol-related causes. Holding a Christian intervention could help save someone’s life.

Faith as a Positive Factor

Approaching your loved one from a Christian perspective and involving them in a faith-based intervention can help improve their success rate in recovery. Recent research has found that people who engage in spiritual activities improved their chance of completing an addition treatment program successfully.

The study showed that faith-based beliefs and practices provide aid and comfort to those in need, as well as tangible and valuable resources that can help prevent and address their substance use issues. It also pointed out that over 84% of scientific studies have demonstrated that faith is a positive factor in the prevention of addiction and in the recovery process.

These researchers concluded that religion and spirituality are “exceptionally powerful, integral, and indispensable resources in substance abuse prevention and recovery.” They added that “faith plays a key role in treating the mind, body, and spirit.”

How to Stage an Intervention

The first step in planning and staging an intervention is to educate yourself about addiction, including how someone can become addicted and how you and your family can help the individual. Understand that addiction is a disease, not a choice. This is a key point to remember to avoid placing blame on your loved one or on any other family members or friends during the intervention.

Then develop a plan that includes the details of what you are going to say as well as what you should not say. An intervention or addiction treatment expert can help guide you through planning the Christian intervention. It’s helpful to have a third party involved, such as a counselor or a pastor, to moderate the discussion as emotions can run high during these sessions.

During the intervention itself, you should be open and honest. Point out the aspects of your loved one’s behavior that are concerning, without attacking the individual. State facts such as “we’ve observed that you’re missing work more frequently” or “we’re concerned that your health has deteriorated.” You can also point out how your loved one’s behavior is affecting other members of the family. Offer details and stick to the facts, without judgement.

Be prepared with a set of consequences and stay firm about following through with them. Your loved one needs to get help and if they refuse, make it clear that you and your family will no longer support their addictive behaviors. This could mean that you no longer provide a free room for them to live in while they are using drugs or alcohol. They will have to pay rent or move out, unless they agree to seek treatment for their addiction.

Be ready to take your loved one to a treatment center. Do the research before the intervention to find the right one for the individual and for your family. The decision to go to supervised detox and treatment needs to be made during the Christian intervention, so your loved one does not have the opportunity to change their mind. You also don’t want them to try to detox on their own as that can also be very dangerous.

Be Ready for Recovery

Understand that a successful Christian intervention is not the end of the journey for you, your loved one, or your other family members. Recovery is a long-term, ongoing process involving the whole family. Now that you know how to stage an intervention, be prepared to support your loved one throughout the treatment and recovery. They will need you and your positive encouragement as they work toward a healthier life without drugs or alcohol.

California Faith-Based Drug Addiction Treatment

To get help for your loved one in a Christian setting, please contact Celebrate Hope to learn more about our faith-based addiction treatment program. Our team helps men and women break the cycle of addiction and begin anew. We rely on the teachings of Jesus Christ, along with evidence-based therapies to get individuals on the path of recovery.

Wednesday, July 14, 2021

What is the Biblical Meaning of Forgiveness?

Biblical meaning of forgiveness

Forgiving yourself and forgiving others can be challenging, particularly if you have been addicted to drugs and alcohol and are embarrassed or ashamed by some of the things you’ve done. That’s the beauty of forgiveness, though. It allows you to move past the mistakes and wrongdoings and move forward toward a healthier future. For Christians in addiction treatment and recovery, it’s important to understand the Biblical meaning of forgiveness as well.

Forgiveness is Important in Recovery

The 12-Step program refers to making amends to others in Steps 8 and 9. According to the publication, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, these two steps are “concerned with personal relationships.” In part, the goal is to “consider how, with our newfound knowledge of ourselves, we may develop the best possible relations with every human being we know.”

The 8th step, in particular, demands a new kind of honesty about your relationships with others. It begins with the procedure of forgiving others as well as forgiving yourself as you learn how to live in the world without the substances to which you were once addicted. You can be assured that you are ready and willing for this step when you can apologize to others and decide to replace your judgment of others, particularly if they have hurt you at some point, with attitudes of mercy and forgiveness.

During these steps, you are not just forgiving and making amends with friends or family members, but also with those whom you consider to be “enemies.” Humility is a critical part of forgiveness. It is now your responsibility to forgive others, including your enemies, and apologize for your own wrongdoing.

The Power of Forgiveness

Forgiveness serves to release your feelings of resentment or vengeance toward someone who has harmed you. It is a conscious, deliberate decision that you make as you progress through your recovery from addiction. You are not deciding whether anyone deserves your forgiveness. You are also not excusing any real offenses against you.

Relationships can become seriously damaged when you are addicted to drugs or alcohol. Through forgiveness, you are taking a step toward repairing that damage. It will also bring you peace of mind as it frees you from your pent-up anger toward the other person. You cannot truly forgive someone if you are still harboring negative feelings toward them. Forgiveness gives you the power to recognize the pain someone else has caused you without letting that pain define you, enabling you to heal emotionally and mentally.

An Important Part of Christianity

Forgiving yourself, asking for forgiveness from others, and showing forgiveness to others are important aspects of your Christianity. The Bible says that you are to follow the example of Jesus, who taught you that you should forgive. Part of what this means is that you are to let go of the negative feelings that come with bearing a grudge against someone else.

Your feelings of hatred and anger can cause harm to you as well as to the other person. Jesus has taught you to basically let those feelings go. In fact, as you reach out to others with compassion, you release those feelings of resentment in an act of Christian love.

This is, in essence, what the Biblical meaning of forgiveness is, that you should let go of those feelings of hatred and anger toward someone whom you feel has wronged you. Just as you ask God for forgiveness when you have done something wrong, so you should be willing to forgive others when they have done something against you. Jesus taught that you should love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you. You cannot do this while holding onto harmful feelings of anger and revenge.

Bible Verses About Forgiveness

As you work on forgiveness in your addiction recovery, keep in mind these helpful and inspirational words from the Bible:

"Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven." — Luke 6:37

"And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses." — Mark 11:25

"Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you." — Ephesians 4:32

"The Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive." — Colossians 3:13

California Faith-Based Drug Addiction Treatment

To get help overcoming drug addiction, please contact Celebrate Hope to learn more about our faith-based addiction treatment program. Our team helps men and women break the cycle of addiction and begin anew. We rely on the teachings of Jesus Christ, along with evidence-based therapies to get individuals on the path of recovery.

Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Showing Unconditional Love in Recovery

unconditional love in recovery

Whether you are going through recovery yourself or you are supporting a loved one who is recovering from an addiction, you may find that you are discovering some new feelings and emotions. You’ve been understandably stressed and worried and now it’s time to start showing unconditional love in recovery.

What is Unconditional Love?
Very simply, unconditional love is shared with no strings attached. You offer it freely, expecting nothing in return and placing no restrictions or requirements on the other person. Often referred to as agape love, unconditional love is selfless. The word agape comes from the Greek and means brotherly love or charity. In Ecclesiastical use, it refers to the love of God for man and of man for God.

Reaching Out to Others
When you are the one in addiction treatment, showing unconditional love in recovery can mean reaching out to others that you may have hurt or that you want to reconnect with in a more meaningful and positive way. In addiction, you probably damaged a lot of important relationships in your life.  The effort of reaching out to others can benefit you in recovery as you develop a sense of selfless concern for those around you and work to rebuild those relationships.

If you have a loved one who has been addicted and is now in recovery, showing them unconditional love can help them tremendously as they work on their treatment program. Let the person know you love and care about them, regardless of what they may have done when they were addicted. Unconditional does not mean, of course, that you should let them get away with things they should no longer be doing. What it does mean is that you are reassuring them that you will continue to love and forgive them for what they have done in the past and that you support them as they move forward with their life.

The Connection to Addiction
If your family member or friend is struggling to overcome their addiction, know that your unconditional love for them is the only thing that is more powerful in their life. An individual who is addicted to drugs or alcohol may have low self-esteem, most likely because they are often seen simply as someone who has made wrong choices. In truth, though, their addiction is a disease and they need your unconditional love to help them deal with the symptoms of that disease as they progress through recovery.

Selfless, loving kindness can be instrumental in helping people suffering from substance use issues. Empathy and compassion are important elements of unconditional love and can help individuals undergoing treatment as they work to understand their own feelings and to become more self-aware.

Mental and Emotional Benefits
Research has actually determined that when someone is a recipient of unconditional love, it can produce positive feelings for them. One study explored how the regions of the brain were affected when someone reached out and showed unconditional love. The result was that many areas of the brain’s reward system were activated.

Other studies showed that receiving unconditional love can make a difference in an individual’s emotional well-being. Participants exhibited greater resilience and fewer mental health symptoms. A study of children supported the idea that giving them unconditional love improved their lifelong health and well-being.

Christ’s Unconditional Love
The highest example we have of unconditional love comes from God himself. In a Christian-based addiction treatment setting, it is important to remember the love of Christ as He guides you through your recovery. For the person going through addiction treatment and for their family and friends, there are several helpful verses to help remind you of God’s unconditional love.

“Your faithful love is priceless, God! Humanity finds refuge in the shadow of your wings.” — Psalm 36:7

“Let them thank the Lord for his faithful love and his wondrous works for all people, because God satisfied the one who was parched with thirst, and he filled up the hungry with good things!” — Psalm 107:8-9

“Give thanks to the Lord because he is good, because his faithful love endures forever.” — 1 Chronicles 16:34

“I ask that you’ll have the power to grasp love’s width and length, height and depth, together with all believers. I ask that you’ll know the love of Christ that is beyond knowledge so that you will be filled entirely with the fullness of God.” — Ephesians 3:18-19

California Faith-Based Drug Addiction Treatment
To get help overcoming drug addiction, please contact Celebrate Hope to learn more about our faith-based addiction treatment program. Our team helps men and women break the cycle of addiction and begin anew. We rely on the teachings of Jesus Christ, along with evidence-based therapies to get individuals on the path of recovery.

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