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Thursday, February 25, 2021

How People in Recovery Can Help Current Addicts

help current addicts

When you have successfully completed treatment for your addiction and are progressing in your recovery, you have a lot to offer others. You have experiences to share and, more importantly, an understanding of what others are going through as they struggle with their own addiction. People in recovery can help current addicts in a number of ways, which can be beneficial to everyone involved.

Why Help Others?

Helping others can make you feel better and can actually help in your own recovery efforts. There have been many research studies that have shown the effects of helping others when you are working through your own addiction to drugs or alcohol. In particular, Case Western University’s Maria Pagano has done quite a bit of research on social connections and their benefits for addicts.

Pagano and her team have concluded that you can increase your chances of staying sober by up to 50 percent when you have a supportive network, your sense of isolation is reduced, your social anxiety is decreased, and you reach out to help others. Having a network of people who support you can significantly impact your ability to stay sober. You can be part of that network in recovery as you help current addicts.

When you help others, it appears to decrease some of the psychological markers of addiction that made you prone to your addictive behaviors. You will probably find that helping others leads to better interpersonal interactions and will certainly prove beneficial to current addicts that you are able to assist through your words and actions.


Just being in someone else’s life to listen to them can be a tremendous help for current addicts. In recovery, you participate in support groups where other people who have experienced the challenges of addiction and the rewards of recovery are there to listen to you. As someone in recovery yourself, you can help current addicts by being empathetic, understanding their situation and relating to their struggles. While the addict may have friends or family members who want to support them, as an addict yourself you can offer the listening ear they truly need.

Conduct Well-Being Checks

Isolation is a serious issue in addiction. Now, especially, people are feeling even more isolated as the pandemic has limited face-to-face interactions. One of the most important ways people in recovery can help current addicts is to check on them frequently to ensure they are doing well, mentally and physically.

Make a phone call, suggest a video chat, or communicate via text or email regularly. Social isolation has been linked to negative mental and physical health consequences such as poor sleep quality, depression, cognitive decline, and even impaired immunity. The longer the isolation continues, the more serious its impact on an individual’s well-being. Reach out and let the individual know you care about them and want to be sure that they are taking care of themselves.

Participate in Online Support Groups

During “normal” times, one of the most effective ways to help current addicts is to help out at support group meetings. You might give a ride to someone who needs to attend, help set up the meeting itself, serve coffee, and stay behind to chat one-on-one. As most support group meetings have moved online, you can still participate actively, being there as a supportive, encouraging person in recovery.

Connect on a Spiritual Level

When you are active in your faith-based recovery, connecting with current addicts on a spiritual level can provide the support and encouragement they need to get through some very tough days. Two verses that define our mission at Celebrate Hope can be very helpful for others who are struggling with overcoming their addiction to drugs or alcohol.

Share with others that it is possible to “be transformed by the renewing of your mind,” as described in Romans 12:2. In recovery and in life, “the old life is gone; a new life has begun,” as we find in 2 Corinthians 5:17. This is an important message that can help current addicts, as well as yourself, as a reminder that addiction treatment and your faith give you a new life in recovery.

Help Them Find Help

Of course, the most important ways people in recovery can help current addicts is by guiding them toward the resources they need to get help for their mental and physical health. If you know someone who struggles with a substance use disorder, reach out and let them know they can get that help with Celebrate Hope’s faith-based addiction treatment program.

Encourage them to contact us to learn more about we help 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.

Thursday, February 11, 2021

The Healing Power of Faith | Addiction and Faith-Based Recovery

healing power of faith

As the challenges of drug and alcohol addiction continue in the US, there is hope. Individuals who recognize they need help and seek treatment can enjoy a successful recovery from their addictive behaviors. The healing power of faith has been shown to be a significant factor in recovery from addiction. Faith-based recovery can mean the difference for your health and your life.

The Substance Abuse Crisis

In the US, more than 20 million people over the age of 12 have a substance use disorder. Of those, at least 2 million have an opioid use disorder, including those who use or abuse prescription pain relievers. The CDC estimates that 88,000 people die each year from alcohol-related causes, making alcohol the third leading preventable cause of death in the country. in addition, suicide contributes to the death rates of those struggling with a substance use disorder.

Impact of Faith on Healing

Multiple evidence-based research studies confirm the positive impact of an individual’s faith on their health and well-being. Among individuals who are suffering from substance abuse issues, their addiction and faith-based recovery clearly demonstrate the healing power of faith.

The research has found that spiritual support and religious involvement can be integral to an individual’s ability to deal with substance abuse. In one study, 84% of clients in addiction counseling expressed a desire for a greater emphasis on spirituality in their treatment program. Faith not only helps in treatment, but people who are addicted to drugs or alcohol have shown a lower risk of relapse in recovery when they are involved in spiritual programs that encourage fellowship.

A person’s effective use of the spiritual resources from their faith tradition, known as positive religious coping, has been determined to contribute to more positive substance abuse recovery outcomes. One study followed addiction treatment participants who had been addicted to alcohol. During a period ranging from two weeks to six months after enrolling in the program, the participants who relied on their faith to help them cope were less likely to be tempted to drink than those who had no such beliefs.

In addition, positive religious coping has been found to be effective when an individual is dealing with opioid dependence, which is an addiction with high rates of relapse. A research study found that increased positive religious coping was associated with less frequent opioid use and more frequent 12-step participation, which further reinforced the desire to stay in recovery and to stay sober.

Faith-Based Social Support

The Department of Health and Human Services for Mental Health and Substance Use has outlined the steps necessary to combat and treat substance use disorders, including clinical care, social intervention, and social support. Faith-based communities and organizations play a large and impactful role in the necessary social intervention and support for individuals recovering from an addiction to drugs and alcohol. Part of their effectiveness lies in their ability to reach beyond the individual and engage the family and the community in the recovery process.

Sustained Abstinence in Recovery

Yet another study points to the fact that religious and spiritual beliefs and practices lead to lower levels of substance abuse in individuals. In fact, almost 82% of the clients who experienced a spiritual awakening during their substance abuse treatment and recovery were completely abstinent one year after completing treatment, as compared with 55% of those clients who were not spiritually awakened.

Substance Abuse Prevention Impact

In addition to the healing power of faith, it has been determined that faith can actually protect individuals against developing a substance abuse issue. In a study of over 11,000 adult women, significant reductions in alcohol and drug use by more religiously active women were found.

A separate research project showed that both men and women who use prescription opioids and who are rooted in their faith are less likely to engage in use of multiple medications or to use medications in combination with alcohol. Of those who participate actively in their faith, such as attending religious services regularly, a reduced rate of alcoholism and an increase in subjective well-being has been discovered.

California Faith-Based Addiction Treatment

If you or a loved one struggles with a substance use disorder, 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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