Pinpointing progress can be hard when you are the one actively working toward recovery. If you have a loved one in treatment, you might be surprised by how difficult it is for them to notice their progress when it is so obvious to you. Everyone needs a reminder of how they are changing, both incrementally and systematically.
Addiction affects the mind first and foremost before it starts affecting the body or the spirit. Mind altering substances like drugs and alcohol contain mind altering chemicals which cause the development of addiction to take place. As chemicals, neural pathways, and synapses in the brain are affected by substances, the many functions of the brain are affected as well. One of the earliest ways progress makes an appearance in recovery is by gaining clarity. Men might describe feelings as though their mind were being cleaned out and that they can feel their brain functioning more efficiently. Decision-making is another area where brain function dramatically changes. Small actions like pausing to think, thoroughly weighing pros and cons, or identifying first with feelings before pleasurable desires are tremendous achievements in progress. Many of these functions improve because the cognitive area of the brain is improving. Cognitive impairments caused by addiction are healed through treatment and recovery.
The body and the brain are connected by the nervous system. Every single movement we make, conscious or unconscious, is dictated by this complex system. Most mind altering substances fall under one of two categories: a central nervous system depressant or a central nervous system stimulant. Either way, the central nervous system is being directly impacted by drugs and alcohol. Over time, addiction wears down on the connection between mind and body and starts harming the body itself. Severe weight loss, severe weight gain, sickness, infection, and overall poor health is common for men who have been living with addiction. Progress in the body can take time. First, there is a return of pigment and color to the skin followed by a new level of sparkle in the eye as the body detoxes. For men who come to Tree House Recovery in Portland, the physical changes are evident. Our intense focus on physical strength training through yoga, hiking, ABIT, ESM fitness therapy, cardio, and adventure, rebuilds men’s bodies to be the capable, high-functioning, high-performance machines that they can be.
Spirituality is defined uniquely by each individual. Generally, spirituality can refer to matters which transcend the human form. Addiction affects men’s spirituality differently depending on his faith or belief system. Even without a specific religion or belief, men suffer spiritually at the hand’s of addiction by losing their sense of healthy pride, losing humility, gaining ego, and abandoning hope. Progress in recovery is spiritually demonstrated when men find hope for a better future believing that freedom from addiction is possible.
Tree House Recovery is a men’s addiction treatment facility offering long term partial care options. Our program combines the best of clinically proven therapy, intense fitness regiments, and the adventure of the great outdoors. Call us today for information: (503) 850-2474