Coping Habits to Avoid while in Treatment

Someone with substance use disorder taking the proper steps to seek treatment for their addiction takes on a monumental feat. The road to recovery is not always an easy one; it’s often filled with ups and downs that can test patients’ strength and will to achieve their goals. Through the treatment process, patients will be challenged to make adjustments. With substance use counseling and medication-assisted treatment, they will need to practice mindfulness and healthy coping mechanisms to avoid roadblocks on their path towards healing.


Patients enrolled in MAT will often quickly begin to improve other aspects of their lives, especially regaining financial independence and responsibility. This will usually involve a new job that can be an excellent distraction from triggering thoughts and feelings that manifest when spending too much time alone. With the current pandemic situation, people may not be able to attain jobs as quickly, but those who do may become essential workers, which can involve very stressful work hours. Patients should be realistic about their ability to handle the extra responsibility of working full time and take things slowly as not to overload themselves with work stress.


During substance use disorder treatment, many patients can think lucidly for the first time in a while, thanks to the stabilizing benefits of MAT. They soon realize how much they’ve deprived themselves of simple luxuries because they spent almost all their time and money feeding their addiction. This can spur an urge to splurge on shopping, which isn’t always harmful and can be a simple means of self-care. However, it becomes unhealthy when it turns into a distraction or coping mechanism to mask depression and anxiety. Creating a budget for all monthly expenses can help curb this issue or prevent it altogether.


While nearly everyone will use avoidance tactics to procrastinate on dealing with specific issues, this habit can be particularly detrimental to people in treatment. Repairing the damage caused by addiction can be a long journey, but getting started sooner than later can be part of the healing process. Dealing with debts, legal issues, and other critical impending matters while in treatment can be stressful, but once they are squared away, or at least on the course to be settled, the sense of accomplishment and relief from the burden of guilt and pressure can be encouraging.


Life during treatment can bring much clarity to patients, often opening their eyes to the toxic people and surroundings that may have contributed to their addiction. For many, this can be an alienating feeling, causing people to avoid social gatherings or places for fear of potential triggers or simply because they feel distrustful of new things not to harm their progress. While being cautious is generally a good thing during this time, patients should avoid isolating themselves too much due to the risk of loneliness and boredom and developing other mental health issues from spending too much time alone.

Substance use counseling is a wonderful asset for patients in treatment. When speaking with counselors, they can learn to develop healthy coping habits to help them with their journey towards long-lasting recovery and freedom from addiction.

If bad coping habits have lead to an addiction to opioids, it’s not too late to get the help you need. Middlesex Recovery offers highly effective medication-assisted treatment combined with counseling services to address addiction’s physical and emotional ramifications. Opioid addiction is not the end of your story. With our compassionate professionals walking beside you, you can break free so that you can be the best version of yourself for your family.

Learn how you can get started today.

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