Although the holidays are a time for merriment and family, the time after the holidays can be difficult for some. Just as some people are stressed during the holidays, others are stressed after the holidays. The let down from all of the activity can be devastating to a recovering opiate addict. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, stress is a mitigating factor for addiction relapse. This stress is sometimes created by the post holiday season.
Why is After the Holidays Stressful for Addicts?
After the holidays, everyone starts returning to work and life. Unfortunately after the holidays is also the return of a variety of pressures. Some of the reasons behind the post holiday stress are:
- A letdown after the excitement of constant parties and social events.
- Returning to work after a break.
- Returning from vacation or family gatherings.
- Winter is a stressful time for some because in many areas it becomes gloomy and dark.
- Being alone after being around people and merriment constantly.
Although it might not be stressful for many, it is depressing and stressful for those who thrive off being socially active. It is not surprising that some return to replacing the pleasure of the holidays with the pleasure that opiates provide.
How to Avoid the Post Holiday Blues without using Drugs
There are ways that you can avoid the post holiday blues without resorting to illegal or prescription drugs. Fortunately, these ways are relatively simple and easy to do.
- Plan get togethers with family and friends outside of the holidays. There is no reason why people cannot get together at any time of year. Most people find pleasure in going out or hosting parties for their friends and family. If your family lives far away there are always virtual games and parties.
- Find a hobby that you enjoy. Doing something that you find enjoyable without drugs gives you a natural endorphin rush.
- Exercise is a great way to get a natural high. Exercise is also known to release endorphins into the system. Some people report a natural high for hours after a good work out.
- Check your eating habits. Healthy eating is one way to avoid depression and stress. When your body has the correct fuel you need, you feel better.
- Learn a new skill. By stimulating your mind you can get your mind off the depression and the cravings that the depression brings.
Most of these are simple things that you can do to feel better. You can also come up with your own plan to beat the post holiday blues. Reach out to friends and family for help.
What to do if You Start to Slip
If you feel yourself going into relapse or starting to slip, get help. There are many treatment options available and you can choose the treatment type that you want. For more information on relapse treatment, call us at 800-429-5210 (Who Answers?). We can help.