GEHA Insurance: A Comprehensive Overview

What Services Are Available for Outpatient Rehab?

GEHA Insurance: A Comprehensive Overview

If you’re seeking reliable health insurance options, GEHA Insurance might have caught your attention. With a history spanning over eight decades, Government Employees Health Association, commonly known as GEHA, has established itself as a trusted provider of health insurance plans. In this article, we’ll delve into what GEHA Insurance is all about, its offerings, and what makes it a noteworthy choice for many.

1. A Brief Introduction to GEHA:

GEHA is a non-profit organization that primarily serves federal employees and their families. It was founded in 1937 and has since grown to become one of the largest health and dental plan administrators in the United States. GEHA’s mission is to provide quality and affordable healthcare coverage to its members while focusing on their overall well-being.

2. Membership Eligibility:

GEHA primarily caters to federal employees, retirees, and their dependents. This includes members of various federal agencies and departments. The organization offers exclusive plans for federal employees and retirees, leveraging its understanding of their unique needs.

3. Range of Health Plans:

GEHA offers a wide array of health insurance plans, catering to different needs and preferences. These plans include:

  • Elevate: This is GEHA’s flagship plan, known for its comprehensive coverage, nationwide network, and access to a wide range of healthcare providers.
  • High Deductible Health Plan (HDHP): Ideal for those who want to take advantage of Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) for tax benefits and lower premiums.
  • Standard Option: A traditional insurance plan with a network of preferred providers.
  • Value Plan: Designed for cost-conscious individuals or families, offering essential coverage at lower premiums.

4. Dental and Vision Coverage:

GEHA doesn’t limit its offerings to just health insurance. They also provide dental and vision insurance plans, ensuring that members have access to comprehensive healthcare services. These plans cover routine check-ups, eye exams, dental cleanings, and more.

5. Focus on Wellness:

What sets GEHA apart is its emphasis on wellness. They provide resources, tools, and support to help members live healthier lives. This includes access to wellness programs, telehealth services, and preventive care initiatives.

6. National Network:

GEHA has a robust network of healthcare providers, including physicians, specialists, hospitals, and pharmacies. This national network ensures that members can receive care regardless of where they live or travel.

7. Financial Stability:

GEHA’s financial stability is a testament to its commitment to serving its members. As a non-profit organization, it reinvests earnings to improve its services and keep premiums competitive.

8. Member Satisfaction:

Member satisfaction is a top priority for GEHA. They regularly seek feedback from members and use it to improve their services continually. High member satisfaction ratings are a testament to their dedication to quality care.


In conclusion, GEHA Insurance is a respected and established provider of health insurance plans, serving federal employees, retirees, and their families. With a range of health, dental, and vision coverage options, a focus on wellness, and a nationwide network, GEHA strives to offer comprehensive and affordable healthcare solutions. If you are eligible for GEHA membership, it’s worth exploring their offerings to find a plan that suits your specific healthcare needs and preferences. GEHA’s commitment to its members’ well-being and satisfaction makes it a notable choice in the realm of health insurance providers.

Heroin Detox: What To Expect

When grappling with the thorny issue of heroin addiction, many people might feel overwhelmed and alone. But it’s important to remember that there’s help available, and taking the first step toward seeking this help is a commendable milestone in the recovery process.

Here at SOBA New Jersey, we understand the struggle and are dedicated to providing the necessary support and care to guide you or your loved one through this challenging journey. One of the crucial steps in this journey is the detoxification process, a medical procedure aimed at clearing toxins from the body and managing withdrawal symptoms.

What Should You Know About Heroin Addiction?

Understanding heroin addiction is essential on the road to recovery. But what exactly is heroin addiction, and how does it affect those who struggle with it?

Heroin, an opioid drug derived from morphine, is highly addictive. It operates by interacting with opioid receptors in the brain, inducing feelings of intense pleasure and euphoria. Over time, repeated use of heroin can lead to physical dependence and addiction — an intense, compulsive urge to use the drug despite its harmful consequences.

Addiction doesn’t just impact the individual; it can also affect those around them, causing emotional distress and strain in relationships. The disruptive nature of heroin addiction often extends beyond the user, touching every aspect of their life.

Employment, education, social activities, and family bonds can be severely affected, further underscoring the comprehensive care and support required to overcome addiction. That’s where SOBA New Jersey comes in.

As a trusted and dedicated rehabilitation facility, we’re here to provide a safe, warm, and non-judgmental space for recovery. We understand that addiction is not a choice, but recovery is. Our mission is to guide you through every step of your recovery journey, starting with understanding the nature of heroin addiction.

Why Is Detox an Important Part of Heroin Addiction Treatment?

Detox, short for detoxification, is an essential part of heroin addiction treatment. It’s the first step in the recovery process and involves the removal of heroin and other toxins from the body. This helps to manage withdrawal symptoms when one stops using the drug.

The detoxification process is pivotal as it addresses the physical aspects of addiction, helping the body rid itself of the drug’s influence. Moreover, detox is essential because it initiates the physiological healing process, preparing the individual for the next stages of recovery, which address the psychological aspects of addiction.

Attempting to detox from heroin at home, or “self-detox,” can be hazardous due to severe withdrawal symptoms such as restlessness, muscle and bone pain, insomnia, vomiting, and more. These symptoms can become overwhelming without medical support and potentially escalate to life-threatening conditions.

Unsupervised detox can also increase the risk of relapse due to the discomfort and distress associated with withdrawal symptoms. That’s why a professionally supervised detox is crucial.

At SOBA New Jersey, our expert medical team ensures a safe and comfortable detox process. We provide medical supervision and care tailored to each individual’s needs, making the detox process manageable and significantly safer than attempting it alone. Our team is prepared to manage any complications that may arise, providing reassurance and expert care to individuals during this critical first step toward recovery.

What To Expect During a Heroin Detox

If you’re preparing to undergo a heroin detox, feeling a bit apprehensive about the unknown is natural. At SOBA New Jersey, we’re committed to making this process as comfortable and manageable as possible for you. Here’s a brief overview of what to expect during detox with us.

Upon admission, our experienced medical team will assess your health status, history of substance use, and any co-occurring mental health disorders. This comprehensive evaluation is crucial as it provides a holistic view of your current situation.

The information gathered is vital in helping us develop a personalized detox plan that caters to your unique needs. Our approach to care is tailored, ensuring that your treatment plan aligns with your physical, emotional, and psychological needs.

The Detoxification Process

During detox, our primary aim is to manage withdrawal symptoms while your body adjusts to the absence of heroin. This might involve using approved medications to alleviate discomfort and potential cravings under the careful supervision of our medical staff.

While challenging, it’s important to note that this phase is temporary and a significant first step towards recovery.

Part of our detox protocol involves regular check-ins and monitoring, allowing our medical team to adjust your treatment plan as necessary and respond quickly to any medical needs. This level of attentiveness ensures your detox process is as comfortable and safe as possible.

Compassionate Care Throughout the Detox Process

Regarding detox, we understand that your mental and emotional well-being is just as crucial as your physical well-being. With us, you can expect to be treated with the utmost dignity, respect, and compassion throughout your detox process.

Our team at SOBA New Jersey is dedicated to providing a high level of care and attention, offering reassurance and support around the clock. Our small size allows us to focus on you as an individual, ensuring you receive the personalized care you deserve.

We understand the emotional challenges of detox, and our team is committed to providing emotional support, empathy, and understanding throughout the process. This compassionate approach underscores our belief in each individual’s strength and resilience in their recovery journey.

At SOBA New Jersey, we acknowledge you as a distinct individual with your own unique needs and strengths, and we passionately believe in your potential to lead a fulfilling life free from addiction.

Coping With Withdrawal Symptoms

Withdrawal symptoms can be one of the most challenging aspects of the detox process. These symptoms, which can range from mild discomfort to severe physical and psychological distress, are a natural response as the body adapts to the absence of heroin.

Some of these withdrawal symptoms may include:

  • Restlessness and agitation
  • Muscle aches and joint pain
  • Insomnia or sleep disturbances
  • Sweating and fever
  • Increased heart rate
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Intense cravings for heroin
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Irritability and mood swings
  • Flu-like symptoms (chills, runny nose, fever)

At SOBA New Jersey, we utilize evidence-based medications to alleviate symptoms like restlessness, nausea, muscle aches, and anxiety.

It’s essential to remember that withdrawal symptoms can be unpredictable and potentially dangerous if not managed under professional medical supervision. That’s why it’s crucial not to attempt detoxification alone.

Remember, recovery is a journey, and each step, no matter how difficult, brings you closer to reclaiming the life and happiness you deserve. You don’t have to go through it alone.

Moving Forward After Detox: Treatment Programs at SOBA New Jersey

Once the detox process is complete, it’s crucial to understand that the journey to recovery doesn’t end there. At SOBA New Jersey, we’re dedicated to supporting you through the next steps of your recovery journey, providing a variety of treatment programs tailored to your individual needs.

Our treatment programs are designed to address the root causes of addiction, offering you the tools and skills needed to achieve long-term sobriety. We offer a range of services, including Dual Diagnosis treatment for co-occurring mental health disorders, short-term residential and long-term rehab programs, outpatient treatment, family programs, and much more.

Our holistic approach includes therapies like adventure therapy and spiritual care alongside traditional treatment methods to foster overall wellness and ensure a comprehensive recovery journey. You can also benefit from our telehealth services, bringing our dedicated support and care directly to you, wherever you may be.

We work with you to create a robust aftercare plan, ensuring you’re well-equipped to face the world with a renewed sense of purpose and confidence in your sobriety. We believe every individual is unique, and we strive to cater to these unique needs to ensure you have the foundation for sustained recovery.

Start Your Journey Towards Sobriety

Embarking on the journey to recovery is a courageous act, one that is built on healing, self-discovery, and personal growth. In this journey, the first significant step is the detoxification process, an essential part of recovery where the body rids itself of the heroin’s influence.

This process, while challenging, is made safer and more comfortable when supervised by professional medical teams like the one at SOBA New Jersey.

Remember, you are not alone in this journey. At SOBA New Jersey, we are dedicated to supporting you every step of the way, helping you reclaim the life and happiness you deserve. Our team of skilled professionals, including medical staff, wellness coaches, and aftercare planners, stand ready to provide personalized and compassionate care.

Your journey to recovery starts with understanding, compassion, and quality care. Reach out to us at SOBA New Jersey when you’re ready to take the next step toward sobriety. Together, we can pave the way toward a healthier, happier future that is within your reach.


Heroin DrugFacts | National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)

How opioid drugs activate receptors | National Institutes of Health (NIH)

Clinical Guidelines for Withdrawal Management and Treatment of Drug Dependence in Closed Settings | NCBI Bookshelf

6 Months Sober: What To Expect

If you’ve made it to six months of sobriety, congratulations! Not only is six months a major milestone, but we here at Soba Recovery know just how difficult the journey to get there is. In just six months, you have exponentially improved your quality of life through dedication and determination.

If you’re here because you want to start your recovery journey but want to know more about why choosing sobriety is beneficial, we’re here to bring you some peace of mind. Keep reading to learn more about how your body and mind benefit from sobriety, even after just six months.

Physical and Emotional Sobriety

When you are actively using, you might notice that your overall demeanor is depressed and your morale is low. You might become easily irritated and withdrawn around family and friends trying to help you. Jobs and other responsibilities might falter as you choose substances over taking care of yourself.

With sobriety comes a sort of clarity. While this clarity can be difficult to accept, as it might bring feelings of shame and guilt, it allows you to move forward. Seeing how just six months of sobriety affect you, both physically and emotionally, should be enough to motivate you to continue.

Some people like to document their sobriety journey through photos so that they can see the improvements they are making. You will look and feel better every day, no longer spending days feeling unwell or anxious. Relationships improve, and opportunities start coming your way that could benefit your mental health.

Sobriety Benefits You in More Ways Than One

Throughout the first six months of sobriety, you will have to fight your addiction and stay committed to recovery. If you think you will go through withdrawals, consider starting your journey with the detoxification process. This will allow you to start supervised and safely in a controlled environment.

As you continue your sober journey, the changes in your health and emotional well-being will become apparent. You can maintain these improvements through resilience and commitment and get back to living your best life possible.

Healthier Appearance

When you are in an active addiction, your body struggles to keep up with you. You likely cannot maintain your health due to the toxins in your body from every substance you take.

When you use alcohol, for instance, signs of premature aging can present themselves. Drugs and alcohol can also make you feel anxious, fatigued, and sore. You may lose some of your strength.

Six months into sobriety and your skin may appear healthier, with less dry skin and discoloration. Your eyes might not seem bloodshot, and the dark-colored circles under them may disappear. You may gain back some healthy weight and notice less bloating and puffiness. You might feel more like yourself again when you look in the mirror!

Relationships Improve

Addiction doesn’t just impact you. Friends and family are often at the other end of your addiction without even realizing it. Even if you think you’re hiding it, your loved ones can usually tell when something is wrong.

Substance use can strain the most important of relationships, and though being supportive and loving is a necessity, you can’t force someone to stay beside you and help you manage your pain.

With sobriety comes the opportunity to heal the wounds you’ve created with your loved ones. With a clear mind and goals, you can open conversations that may have been impossible to start while using. Trust and communication are key to maintaining sobriety, and opening up to those close to you can help with accountability.

Balanced Emotions

Drugs and alcohol are known to numb the pain you feel daily. You might want to stop feeling your feelings, but that can be incredibly unhealthy. When you become sober, you begin to feel emotions you have been suppressing with substances. It can be difficult to face, but it shows emotional maturity and balance.

This doesn’t just happen naturally for everyone; going through therapy is a great way to help you get there. Therapy is often required when entering inpatient services at a treatment facility. Even if you are in outpatient, treatment centers can help you get what you need.

You may quickly notice improved moods, less irritability, and a more positive outlook on life. Little things will no longer set you off, and if you are triggered, you can use coping skills to prevent becoming overwhelmed.

Reduced Social Anxiety

Social anxiety might be one of the reasons that you felt comfortable using substances, but they don’t go away just because you are under the influence. You might notice that your social anxiety is back when you first become sober.

You may feel worried about telling people you are sober and wonder how people perceive you if you aren’t partaking in substance use.

If the right people surround you, they won’t even think twice and will support your sobriety. Soon, you’ll notice how much more confident and comfortable you are on your own. You won’t need to hide behind substances to feel good about yourself.

Liver and Brain Damage Control

Alcohol and other substances have a really negative impact on your liver and brain. When you cut back on using substances, your body can begin to repair itself. Alcohol specifically increases the amount of fat in the liver, which can cause the liver to react abnormally. After six months, your liver can become healthier and function properly.

Substances have varying impacts on the brain. Substances can give you brain fog, lower your inhibition, and lead you to lose memories or have a false sense of reality.

Throughout the first six months, you may feel the fog lifted. Your reaction time will improve, you may have more coherent thoughts pop into your head, and your ability to communicate may become easier.

The first month of sobriety is always hard. Feelings of depression or genuine sickness might occur due to withdrawals, which might keep you from being motivated. Persevere, and you will get to the point where the withdrawals don’t exist anymore, and you can feel healthy and happy.

Better Sleep

When you cut back on alcohol, you may begin to feel improvements in your sleep. You are more likely to have deep and restorative sleep when you cut out alcohol from your life because you aren’t waking up as frequently.

Though, this doesn’t happen instantaneously. The first month of sobriety may include a lot of restless nights. Many people use alcohol to help them fall asleep, forming an unhealthy pattern. By the six-month mark, you will likely have a restored natural sleep pattern and feel much more rested.

Better sleep leads to many improvements in your life, including improved appearance, higher energy levels, and balanced moods.

Improved Focus

When you use substances, you never truly have a clear mind. By this point, many individuals claim they have a better outlook on life. People are more likely to reach their goals and maintain good habits after six months of sobriety.

Your thoughts will be clearer, and you will likely be able to communicate them better. At this point, it’s important that you focus on the next steps.

Your recovery journey doesn’t end in six months. It is a lifelong commitment that you need to make every day. Use your newfound focusing skills to make new goals so you hit the next milestone in your sobriety — one whole year.

Continued Care Is Important!

Sobriety takes hard work and dedication. No one has a perfect recovery, so don’t let any slip-ups discourage you. Use them as motivation to continue on your journey to sobriety. Individual therapy and group therapy can be great ways to continue your addiction treatment even after you’ve started to hit sobriety milestones.

With Soba Recovery Center in San Antonio, Texas, you get a personalized treatment plan that puts your needs first. We will help you hit all of your milestones and offer multiple solutions to maintain your sobriety. You may not need to stay with us inpatient or undergo detoxification again, but we have resources available to assist you.

Call today to learn more about the treatment services that we offer and how we can help you live your best sober life.



Impact of Smoking and Alcohol Use on Facial Aging in Women: Results of a Large Multinational, Multiracial, Cross-Sectional Survey | NCBI

Social Anxiety Disorder and Alcohol Use Disorder Comorbidity in the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions | NCBI

Brain Structure and Function in Recovery | NCBI

Substance Abuse Statistics You Might Not Have Heard

Substance Abuse Statistics You Might Not Have Heard

Substance abuse affects millions of people in the United States every year, yet many misguided understandings exist. Addiction is a disease, not a choice. The people that struggle with addiction did not choose for their lives to play out this way, but choosing to get better isn’t always easy.

Substance abuse is often misunderstood, meaning that the people seeking help are misunderstood. We need to understand it better to better treat addiction and allow for a more open-minded approach to treating individuals with substance use disorder.

Keep reading to learn more about different statistics connected to substance abuse of different kinds.

What Is Substance Abuse?

Substance abuse is a disease that impacts a person’s brain and behavior and causes intense cravings for substances such as alcohol, cocaine, methamphetamines, and more. People who struggle with substance use disorder use even though they are aware of the consequences. They become reliant on the substance and can experience distress and withdrawals without it.

Causes of Addiction

People can be impacted by addiction as a result of many factors. It is a mental health disorder that has both environmental and genetic influences.

Environmental: Someone who grows up around other people with substance use disorder can be influenced to use substances as they develop. You might have friends that don’t have your best interests in mind and introduce you to substances. You might have grown up with trauma and other mental health issues that were never treated. All of these things in your environment can lead you to addiction, whether or not you want them to.

Genetics: Addiction is a disease that can be passed down through genetics. Some people are more prone to developing substance use disorder, especially if people in their bloodline struggle with it. However, not all people that have the addiction gene become substance abusers.

Addiction and Abuse Statistics

Every substance has different statistics attached to it. Not all substances affect a person in the same way; some are considered more dangerous or damaging than others. It’s important to know the different statistics for each substance to create a more informed environment.

Substance abuse does not just impact the person who is using. Friends and family suffer at the same time as the people using them, and trying to get help for your loved ones is not easy. Staying informed and understanding the intricacies of substance use can help everyone involved seek help.


Alcohol is one of the most commonly used substances in the United States. With it being legal, many people use alcohol once they have turned 21. Additionally, there are many underage users of alcohol, which can be dangerous, especially when being misused.

Even though it’s the most abused substance, people with alcohol use disorder often go untreated. This is partly due to the general acceptance of alcohol use in the United States. Some statistics that you should know about binge drinking are:

  • Alcohol use disorder (AUD), alcoholism, and alcohol abuse account for nearly six percent of global deaths.
  • Around 141,000 people in the United States die every year from the effects of alcohol.
  • One in 10 Americans over the age of 12 suffer from AUD.
  • Men make up about 62 percent of people diagnosed with Alcohol Use Disorder; women make up 36 percent of people diagnosed with AUD; adolescents make up about three percent of people with AUD.
  • As with many substances, excessive alcohol consumption and alcohol-related substance use disorders are often associated with other mental health disorders, like depression and anxiety.


The opioid epidemic is a public health emergency affecting thousands of Americans daily. Anyone can use opioids, and many start when prescribed an opioid to treat pain. There is a high risk of overdose when using a high dosage of opioids. They can slow your breathing which can lead to death.

Opioids are controlled substances that, in the wrong hands, can be detrimental to a person’s livelihood. Statistics about opioid use disorder (OUD) are:

  • Almost four percent of adults in the United States abuse opioids.
  • From 1999 to 2019, the percentage of overdoses on opioids increased by over 519 percent.
  • Opioids are a factor in seven out of 10 overdoses that occur.
  • There is an average of 103,333 opioid users a day.
  • Teens who were prescribed opioids were 33 percent more likely to misuse opioids after high school.
  • Fentanyl is the most dangerous opioid out there, with Fentanyl overdoses surpassing prescription opioid overdoses by over 550 percent.

Heroin falls under opioid misuse disorder and is one of the more dangerous opioids to get your hands on.

Some statistics involving heroin are:

  • Fourteen thousand people die every year from heroin overdoses.
  • Over six million Americans have used heroin in their lifetime.
  • Eighty percent of people who misused heroin first abused prescription opioids.
  • Over ten thousand men die annually from a heroin overdose; 3,500 women die annually from a heroin overdose.


With the legalization of marijuana in parts of the United States, like alcohol, it has become more widespread and accepted. While it’s thought that cannabis is less dangerous than other drugs, such as alcohol and opioids, people can still develop substance abuse issues with it.

Some statistics that are important to know are:

  • There are about 55 million people who use marijuana in the United States.
  • Almost half of Americans have tried marijuana once in their lifetime.
  • The amount of people that use marijuana is about 20 million more than the number of people who currently use tobacco.
  • Seventy-six percent of the population think marijuana use is less dangerous than tobacco use.
  • Chronic users can develop a mental dependency on marijuana, resulting in physical symptoms.
  • Forty percent of high school students have admitted to trying marijuana before.
  • Thirteen percent of young users will develop a dependency on marijuana.


Stimulants include various drugs known for the euphoric and energetic feeling you get when using them. They also increase your heart rate and blood pressure, putting you at risk for heart conditions in the future or overdosing.

There are also prescription stimulants like Adderall and Preludin that treat people for disorders such as ADHD or help someone lose weight. Without proper care, these prescription drugs can be abused as well.

Stimulants include:

  • Methamphetamine
  • Cocaine
  • Nicotine

Some statistics about stimulants are:

  • Almost two million people admitted to having used meth in 2018.
  • Over five million people admitted to having used cocaine in 2018.
  • One in five drug overdose deaths was related to cocaine use.
  • Caffeine is considered a stimulant and can become addicting, just like other stimulants.


Hallucinogens, like marijuana, have started to make their way into the mainstream. Some medical professionals now use ketamine for treatment-resistant depression in some parts of the United States. Additionally, the legalization of mushrooms (psilocybin) in Colorado has sparked interest nationally.

LSD and ecstasy are also hallucinogens, as well as PCP and DMT. Some statistics on hallucinogens are:

  • Around 7.4 million people have used hallucinogens in the last year.
  • Around 493,000 people have a hallucinogen use disorder.
  • LSD is the most powerful hallucinogen and can create the most issues for a person later on in life.

How To Find Help With Substance Abuse

No matter what you or a loved one is struggling with, Soba Recovery Center in San Antonio, Texas, is here to help. If you think that someone you know is in need of a treatment program for alcohol or drug use disorder, it’s never a bad idea to give us a call and discuss our treatment options. Our healthcare providers are ready and able to help.

Substance abuse is a debilitating mental health disorder that can ruin a person’s life. No matter what the substance is that you use, the effects that come from long-term misuse can be deadly. Taking care of yourself is the best thing you can do, and seeking addiction treatment might be a part of your self-care routine.

Call today to learn more about our services and how we can get you on the road to recovery today!


Key Substance Use and Mental Health Indicators in the United States: Results from the 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health | SAMHSA

Substance Use Disorders and Addiction: Mechanisms, Trends, and Treatment Implications | American Journal of Psychiatry

Drug Abuse Statistics | NCDA

What is the scope of hallucinogen use in the United States? | National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)

13 Substance Abuse Group Activities

13 Substance Abuse Group Activities

Recovery from substance abuse can be intimidating and isolating. Deciding to take care of your addiction can mean leaving a lot of your life behind, including friends you have shared your addiction with. Finding a support system that focuses on building community and creating new connections is essential to your recovery.

Joining a substance abuse group can open you up to new experiences different from your own. Not only do you meet people who understand your struggles, but you can open up and speak freely about your addiction with no fear of judgment.

If you are part of a group or considering joining, here are some activities you can share to try at your next meeting.

The Importance of Substance Abuse Group Activities

The goal of support groups for substance abuse is to bring people with similar struggles together and create a safe space for expression. It can be hard to open up to people you do know, but for some reason, opening up to strangers feels less intense.

In group therapy, you can learn about coping strategies that have worked for others, find out about activities or hobbies you may have never thought to try, and build friendships with people you can talk to about your addiction.

Group topics will apply to anyone struggling with addiction, including how to battle cravings and rebuild healthy relationships with loved ones.

Why Does It Work?

There are multiple reasons why substance abuse recovery groups are effective. For one, they bring together a community that can feel comfortable with one another. Accountability and encouragement are offered throughout sessions, showcasing the progress of everyone’s recovery.

Isolation is a real fear among people with substance use disorder. Whether it’s because you have lost friends due to addiction or have strained relationships with family and friends, sometimes seeking community is not an option you feel comfortable with.

Group therapy eliminates the fear of standing out because you are all there for the same reason. You can also find role models in the group who have been on the recovery journey longer and gain their wisdom.

Where Can You Find Group Activities?

When you go through the recovery process, you will work with the recovery center staff to develop your perfect recovery plan. This might include medically-assisted therapy (MAT), individual therapy, or group therapy. Most treatment centers, such as Soba Recovery Center, offer group therapy to people undergoing both inpatient and outpatient services.

Emotional Health Group Activities

Group therapy activities will have a wide range of topics with unique goals. Not every activity will be your favorite, but others might stick, and you’ll find yourself practicing them on your own.

When dealing with addiction recovery, it is important to check in with yourself and see how you are doing mentally and emotionally. Substance abuse group therapy activities can be aimed at helping you to discuss your emotional health and find ways to improve your overall well-being.

Discussing Triggers

Everyone has different triggers. Discussing them in your group can be helpful in learning about the different ways people have learned to cope. Not every method you try will work for you, so it’s good to learn about various coping skills, including anger management skills, communication skills, and stress management.

Through this activity, you can recognize patterns in your addiction treatment. This might help you learn how to take yourself out of situations that might trigger you before anything ever happens. This is one of the first steps in harm reduction and prevention.

Sharing Your Fears

Every group member takes a piece of paper and writes down what they fear. It can be anything from dealing with their addiction to fears they have in their everyday life. What you write down does not have to be shared publicly unless that is something you’re comfortable with.

Take these lists of fears and put them into a box. Have the group leader read off the lists one by one anonymously. What you are sure to find will be that some of you have similar fears. This helps to recognize that you are not alone in these fears; it’s just that everyone deals with things differently.

Talk About Your Journey So Far

One of the biggest struggles with addiction is feeling isolated and alone. Sharing your journey within your group will help others to feel more comfortable. In this exercise, you can all share one bad thing that has come from your journey to sobriety and one good thing that has come from it.

Shame is often associated with addiction recovery, but if you are all sitting in a room dedicated to recovery, you should be proud of how far you’ve come. You are deciding to turn your life around, and others around you are supporting you.

Share Your Favorite Memory

This activity allows people in your group to lighten up and share something that makes them happy. This can be a memory from childhood, about a good day you had at school or work where you felt accomplished, or the moment you met someone that changed your life.

With addiction comes bouts of depression, anxiety, and other mental illness struggles, and staying positive can be difficult. Sharing memories that bring you joy can brighten the mood in group therapy and remind everyone why they are there.

Sharing Positive Affirmations

Until you’ve done them, you might be hesitant about how well positive self affirmations work. By speaking highly of yourself, you can help to motivate yourself through your recovery journey.

In this group activity, you should write down the affirmations you say to yourself when you’re struggling. Share in a circle what these affirmations are and how they’re intended to help. Who knows? You might learn about new ones that could benefit your daily life.

Self-Care Group Activities

Properly taking care of yourself while in addiction recovery is essential. During the worst parts of addiction, hygiene, physical and mental health, and nutrition often decline. It can be difficult to take care of yourself, but it is so important to get back on track during your recovery journey.

Talk About Your Self-Care Routine

Everyone needs a self-care routine, no matter what you think! Self-care is not just about taking yourself out to nice dinners or buying yourself something when you want it. Self-care is all about doing things that are good for you, and that will help you to be more successful in your life.

Share with the group what it is that you do for self-care. Through this, you might find new habits to pick up on that will benefit you. Your self-care routine might include:

  • Waking up at 7 a.m. and going on a brisk 10-minute walk.
  • Coming home and making yourself coffee and breakfast.
  • Reading or journaling while you drink your coffee.
  • Practicing yoga for 10 minutes before heading off to work.

Make a List of Bad Habits You Want to Break

Speaking of new habits… it’s time to get rid of your bad ones. Write down a list of habits that you want to break and partner up with someone in the group. (If the group is small, share with everyone.)

This person(s) will be your accountability partner and will check in with you throughout the week or at each meeting to see how you’re doing. Check off habits that you’ve broken as you go. It’s almost more satisfying and encouraging to break them when checking them off a list!

Share Your Favorite Recipes

For this activity, you can create a cookbook with your substance abuse group members. Nutrition is part of self-care, but finding the time and energy to develop new recipes can be difficult.

Have everyone in your group bring in two of their favorite recipes: one that is savory and one that is sweet. Put them together in a binder or a shared online document, and try them for yourself. Maybe cooking will become your new hobby!

Physical Group Activities

Exercising and moving your body should be a refreshing part of your recovery. Keeping up with your physical health during active addiction is not easy, but starting on your own can be intimidating. That’s why many people have gym buddies to help motivate them and keep them on track.

Practice Meditation

Stress and anxiety are common for those undergoing addiction recovery. You might find that meditating for the first 10 minutes of every group therapy session sets the mood for the rest of the meeting.

Put some soft and peaceful music of white noise in the background. Have everyone close their eyes and focus on their breathing. Let your mind relax and concentrate on how your breath feels coming in and out of your body. When you’re done, allow people to share how the experience made them feel before moving on.

Start a Hiking Group

You may find people in your substance abuse group who want to spend more time outdoors. Start a hiking group within your substance abuse group. Set up times and places to participate in group hikes or even group walks.

If you aren’t interested in solo hikes, this might be the perfect opportunity for you. Spending time outdoors is good for your mental and physical health. Finding a hobby that brings you joy is essential during recovery, and doing it with friends with similar goals can make it all the better.

Artistic Group Activities

Expression and creativity can free a person from the hurt they carry inside. Art therapy is a form that is used for people of all ages. Anyone can be an artist or use art as a way to help them cope and grow. Find a time, maybe even as you discuss other topics, to sit around and create together.

Paint Night

Painting is a great way to express yourself because there are no rules. Everyone can get a piece of paper or canvas and paint together as they tackle other topics. You can even have it so every time you paint; there is a prompt that everyone can follow.

Share with the group your finished product at the end of the meeting. Find a space where you can hang up all of your pieces so that they can remind you of your strength and creativity the next time you go for group therapy.

Vision Boarding

Vision boarding is a fun activity that can be done in group therapy. Everyone brings in a posterboard and some old magazines. Use these tools, along with stickers, markers, paint, colored pencils, or stamps, to map out what you want the next year of your life to look like.

Keep these vision boards on display throughout the next year to remind you of your goals.

Create a Playlist of Shared Music

Creating a shared playlist is an easy and relaxing activity you can all participate in. Everyone in your group is bound to have vastly different tastes in music. Music is its own therapy for people, so sharing your favorite songs can be really cathartic.

Have someone in the group create a playlist of all of the songs loved by your group members. You can share it so everyone can access it and have it playing in the background of your next meeting.

Finding Help With Soba

Group therapy is essential. Finding people you can relate to and building a safe community to grow in can help your recovery journey immensely. Soba Recovery Center of San Antonio, Texas, can help you get started on your journey today.

After going through an intake process with staff from Soba, a personalized treatment program will be created to give your recovery the best chance. Group therapy is likely to be a part of that treatment plan.

Get help today and see just how bright your future can be!


1 Groups and Substance Abuse Treatment | NCBI

Emotional and Social Loneliness in Individuals With and Without Substance Dependence Disorder | NCBI

Mindfulness Meditation In The Treatment Of Substance Use Disorders And Preventing Future Relapse: Neurocognitive Mechanisms And Clinical Implications | NCBI

Drug and Alcohol Addiction: What Is Detox?

Drug and Alcohol Addiction: What Is Detox?

If you or a loved one are addicted to drugs or alcohol, you know just how difficult getting sober can be. The process of getting sober requires a lot of support and effort. It’s not easy to do, let alone on your own.

The first step towards recovery is admitting that you need help. Often, the second step is detoxification. Detoxification is also known as withdrawal treatment, and the goal is to get you off a substance at a safe pace.

To learn more about detoxing from alcohol and drug addiction, keep reading.

What Is Detoxification?

Detoxification is when your body rids itself of drugs or alcohol after stopping your use of substances and starting a treatment program. Many people attempt to enter into detoxification on their own, but it is not an easy process and can be very dangerous. Many people become very ill during the detoxification process, making it easy to relapse into alcohol or drug abuse.

Depending on the substances you are detoxing from, your process might look different than someone else’s. Different drugs, how long you have been using, and other health-related factors, might influence how detoxing goes.

The main goal of monitored detoxification is to ensure that a person is safe and receiving proper treatment as their body goes through withdrawals. Entering into a rehabilitation facility that provides monitored and medically-assisted detoxifications can ensure that you are taken care of properly by healthcare providers specializing in substance abuse recovery.

What Are Withdrawals?

Withdrawals happen after you begin to rid your body of substances it is used to. Drugs and alcohol use can alter the chemistry in your brain and cause you to become dependent on the substance. You will have tricked yourself into thinking that you need the substance to function, and it’s partly true.

When you become dependent on a drug or on alcohol, your body believes it needs it to feel “normal.” When you aren’t using, you will begin to feel severe withdrawal symptoms from that substance. Not only are these symptoms painful, but they can be debilitating.

The quickest fix to stop these symptoms is to use again, but it’s not what you actually need if you are looking to recover from substance use disorder. Drug and alcohol withdrawals are dangerous when they aren’t monitored properly at a treatment center.

Some common symptoms of withdrawal are:

  • Nausea
  • High blood pressure
  • Weight loss
  • Tremors
  • Paranoia
  • Elevated heart rate
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Mood swings

The Dangers of Detoxing At-Home

A drug detox or alcohol detox at home instead of within an organized detox program can seem like it’s an easier and less expensive way to get help, but it is not recommended that you try it yourself. Quitting “cold turkey” or trying different home remedies can be potentially fatal, depending on the severity of your addiction and what assistance you require.

If you or a loved one are struggling with dependence on alcohol, opioids, or benzodiazepines or have co-occurring mental health disorders on top of addiction, medically supervised detox is almost required. The side effects of detoxing these substances are potentially life-threatening, and there is a high risk of relapsing or developing additional health problems.

When you are at home, you can’t receive life-saving treatment if you need it. You will find it difficult to stay sober, even if the symptoms aren’t that bad, simply by being unsupervised in your own space. If you can enter a detoxification program at a rehabilitation facility, we highly recommend you do so.

High-Risk Symptoms

While some symptoms of withdrawal and the detoxification process might seem manageable on their own, a few can regularly occur and create issues. For example, if you are a long-term user of methamphetamines or alcohol, the withdrawal symptoms you may experience will likely be more severe than someone trying to stop using cannabis after only a few weeks.

Some high-risk symptoms that you might encounter if you attempt to detoxify at home without medical advice are:

  • Hallucinations
  • Delusions
  • Seizures
  • Fever
  • Severe agitation
  • Delirium

What Is Medically-Assisted Detoxification?

A medically-assisted detoxification, also known as inpatient detox, will provide a patient with around-the-clock care and support during their toughest times. During these treatment services, you will be monitored to stay as safe as possible while experiencing withdrawal from a certain type of substance.

This allows medical professionals to administer proper medication to you on an as-needed basis during the detox process. Some detoxes from certain substances require medication to help subdue some of the withdrawal symptoms.

Depending on how long and severe your addiction is, you may need these medications for longer or shorter than other people. Having medical personnel there to administer the medication, control the dosages, and watch your symptoms should put you at ease.

Going through detoxification alone is scary and intimidating, yet rehab often scares people away. While getting help may not be what you want, you know it’s what you need. We understand that addiction is not a choice and that sometimes you can feel really lost.

It is important to know that while that may be true, it is a choice to get better. And it is one of the best choices you can make for yourself.

The Detoxification Process

Detoxification is scary, but choosing to enter detoxification can be scarier. If you want to go through detox, you have to admit to yourself that you have a problem that needs outside help. The first thing to know is that no one will judge you for your addiction, especially not for seeking help.

After you decide that a detoxification program is right for you, there will be a few steps you go through to complete the process.


Before you proceed with the detoxification process, the rehab center staff will conduct a few tests to better understand your needs. They will determine what substances are in your system, how long you have been using them, any symptoms or health concerns that might be related to your substance use, and if you have co-occurring mental health disorders.

This helps them decide what kind of treatment and medication you will need. From the moment that you enter a rehab facility, you are going to be monitored. This may seem invasive at first, but all the information gathered by the staff will result in a comprehensive treatment plan that is specialized for your needs. The more information you can provide them, the better your detoxification journey will be.


After you have undergone the intake process, you will begin the actual detoxification process. The medical staff monitors this, and you are given the necessary treatment. You might require addiction prevention medications for only a few days or weeks until you can be considered stable.

The journey may change as you undergo the detox, but any choices made by the people in charge of keeping you safe will be essential. This part of the process ensures that the treatment is working, there aren’t any complications, and that you are as comfortable as possible. All these things work together to help you experience detox in the easiest way possible.

Entering Treatment

The entire time you are undergoing detoxification, there is a team behind you crafting a treatment plan specifically for you. Detox deals with your physical dependency on drugs but doesn’t quite yet get to the psychological part. While detox helps control your symptoms and rid your body of substances, that is only the first step toward recovery.

A treatment plan will help you focus on goals for your addiction recovery. Your addiction treatment team will work with you to create a plan that is useful to you and more likely to be sustained. They take into consideration your environment and history and craft a plan that is specifically tailored to you.

Seeking Help With Soba

Getting help can be overwhelming. Especially if you think you are alone and are anxious to ask for help. At Soba Recovery Center in San Antonio, Texas, you never have to feel alone throughout your recovery journey. With a safe and successful detoxification program, we can help start you off strong and follow through with treatment plans specific to you.

With inpatient and outpatient treatment services, you can find an option that is right for you and your addiction recovery with inpatient and outpatient treatment services. You will undergo both individual and group therapy, form a community, and feel seen by your peers. We can offer you sober living situations if you need a safe environment post-treatment that encourages sobriety and happiness.

Reach out to a Soba representative to learn more about how you can get started with the detoxification program today!


The Addicted Human Brain: Insights From Imaging Studies | NCBI

Substance Use and Co-Occurring Mental Disorders | NIMH

Pharmacological Strategies For Detoxification | NCBi

Can You Go to Rehab for Depression?

Can You Go to Rehab for Depression?

Most people think therapy and medication are the only ways to treat depression, along with simply waiting until things start to look up. Though rehab is frequently associated with drug and alcohol abuse, rehab for depression is also available. Plus, if you are already struggling with substance abuse, getting treatment for your depression will intertwine with your treatment plan.

To learn more about rehab for depression and when you should seek it out, keep reading!

What Is Depression?

Depression is one of the most prevalent mental illnesses in the United States. This mental health disorder has various forms, including postpartum depression, seasonal affective disorder, major depressive disorder, and substance-induced depression. Treating depression is different for everyone because everyone experiences it in their own unique way.

Some common symptoms of depression are:

    • Persistent feelings of sadness and emptiness
    • Low self-esteem
    • Irritability and frustration
    • Difficulty sleeping or oversleeping
    • Unplanned weight changes
    • Loss of interest in activities
    • Lack of energy and increased feelings of fatigue
    • Thoughts of suicide

Seeking help in a mental health crisis can be very intimidating because there can be a lot of guilt surrounding the disease. It can feel like you are being dramatic about your issues or that they aren’t as serious as you feel they are, but we are here to tell you that’s not true. Depression is a silent killer that can completely disrupt your life.

What Is Rehab for Depression?

Rehab for depression is the next step after trying individual therapy and group therapy, support groups, and medication as treatment. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is often recommended for those dealing with mental health conditions like depression.

Rehab offers a more in-depth and monitored treatment for mental health issues like major depression. Many rehabilitation centers for depression will offer inpatient treatment programs where you can stay in the center and receive 24/7 care for even the most persistent types of depression.

Many rehabs that treat depression also treat co-occurring disorders, which include substance abuse with depression. Because these two so often go hand-in-hand, simultaneously treating them is essential to see improvements from effective treatment.

When Should You Go to Rehab for Depression?

If you or a loved one are struggling with depression, you should consider entering a rehab center. Getting help from an experienced treatment team can be the thing that changes the trajectory of your life and gets you back to feeling like yourself.

A few signs might help shed light on the fact that you need to seek help.

1. Self-Medicating Frequently

People who struggle with depression often find that medication, therapy sessions, or support groups simply don’t cut it. Many people will turn to self-medication if these methods don’t seem to offer results. Coping by using substances can seem to alleviate symptoms of depression, but they only make them harder to overcome.

When you are depressed, you lack dopamine and serotonin in your brain, making it more difficult to feel any feelings of happiness. Some drugs and alcohol can trick your brain into feeling a rush of happiness.

This itself can become addicting, leading to the overusing of substances. In addition, many young adults and older adults self-medicate by developing eating disorders to gain more control over their lives.

If you’re self-medicating through unhealthy coping methods, an evaluation from a mental health professional can help. In many cases, professional intervention is necessary to help you break free from the spiral of addiction and move toward stability.

2. You’re Struggling in Your Relationships

Personality changes are very common when you struggle with depression. As a result, many stressors can add to your personal relationships as you suffer from the disease, decreasing your overall wellness. You may lose interest in hobbies you once shared with friends, and not be able to maintain romantic relationships, both old or new, which can result in frustration from your friends and family members.

Many people begin to feel isolated or lonely, despite whoever is around them during this time. In turn, they push people away and can damage bonds with people that care about them. Treatment is a way to show your loved ones that you are trying to get better, and sometimes being away from them can alleviate the guilt you feel for neglecting those relationships.

3. Having a Hard Time at Work or School

Whether you love or hate your job or school, depression only makes things harder. You might find that you are missing deadlines, not following up with emails, or forgetting tasks you must complete.

It might become apparent if you aren’t performing as well as you used to or can’t keep up with your peers. This could deter your life’s trajectory because you can miss great opportunities.

People who suffer from depression can still maintain jobs, but the quality of work they put in or the effort they can give will show. If you or a loved one has lost their job or is falling behind in school work, rehab for depression might pull them out of the darkness.

4. Feeling Like a Failure in Everyday Activities

When you suffer from depression, taking care of yourself and everyday tasks can feel overwhelming. If you have noticed that you cannot keep up with hygiene or chores, treatment might be a good option for you.

By leaving your normal environment and getting involved in a new daily routine at a depression treatment center, you might begin to feel like yourself again. Sometimes being in one spot with so much negative energy can make it difficult to get better. Leaving that space and starting fresh might be just what you need.

5. Thoughts of Suicide

Depression is a serious mental illness. If you or a loved one are beginning to feel suicidal or like you want to harm yourself, please seek immediate help. You can reach out to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 to talk with them about what you are feeling.

Reaching out to someone you trust and asking for help is never the wrong answer, even though it might be scary. People love you and want to see you getting better, so don’t hesitate to reach out. You are not a burden.

Getting Help With Soba

People who struggle with both depression and substance use disorder might find Soba Recovery Center of San Antonio, Texas, a great place to start. We develop a personalized treatment plan that focuses on both aspects of your mental health. We understand that you can’t treat one disorder without treating the other.

From inpatient to outpatient services, we have treatment options that will be right for you. You don’t have to wait a minute longer before seeking help for your depression. You can reach out to a Soba representative to talk more about how we might be able to help you on your path to recovery.


Depression | NIMH

Self‐medication With Alcohol Or Drugs For Mood And Anxiety Disorders: A Narrative Review Of The Epidemiological Literature | NCBI

Depression and Everyday Social Activity, Belonging, and Well-Being | NCBI

Alcohol Rehab Processes: How To Overcome Alcohol Addiction

Alcohol Rehab Processes: How To Overcome Alcohol Addiction

Entering into rehab for alcohol addiction can be a difficult and time-consuming process. It may not be a quick recovery that you go through, which means that losing motivation and momentum is very possible. Turning your life around from abusing alcohol takes a lot of effort, and recovery can be an isolating process.

Overcoming alcohol dependence may be difficult, but it is completely worth the struggle. Life after alcohol addiction is possible; you just have to put in the work and stay committed to your goals.

Getting help at a treatment facility, surrounding yourself with support, and setting reasonable standards for yourself can propel you into a successful recovery.

What Is Alcohol Addiction?

Alcohol addiction is a chronic relapse disorder that makes it difficult for someone to function while staying sober. It is often referred to as both Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD) and alcoholism, and it can impact anyone.

People may experience alcohol addiction at different levels, with some having more severe addictions than others. At any level, suffering from alcohol addiction is no way to live, and getting treatment is necessary to live your best life.

Those that suffer from AUD aren’t consciously deciding to. Rather, their brains have adjusted to the amounts of alcohol being put into the body and therefore learn to need it in their systems to survive.

It Impacts People Differently

Anyone can suffer from alcohol addiction. Different factors contribute to someone’s path into addiction, like genetics, family history, societal pressure, and various environmental factors.

Sometimes it can be difficult for a person to see that they have issues with alcohol because not all of the tell-tale signs are there. Some people can retain a job or relationship while struggling with alcoholism, and others may not be able to maintain any form of stability.

For many, other people begin to pick up on the changes in their behavior and notice an issue before they can for themselves. There can be a lot of resentment toward treatment at first, but it’s one of the best things you can do for yourself.

How Do I Recover from Addiction?

Overcoming addiction is going to look different for everyone who struggles with it. There is no one right way to overcome your addiction to alcohol. To see success, you have to be prepared to follow a very individual and specialized treatment plan.

You may be able to get advice from others who have gone through the process and are in active recovery, but how you find success for yourself is dependent on your own specific needs. That’s all to say that there is no one process that will help everyone overcome addiction; what works for you might not work for others.

However, you can go through a few steps to put you on the right path and help figure out your needs.

1. Confide in Someone You Trust

You may have heard it said that the first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem. While noticing signs of an alcohol problem, like excessive drinking habits, alcohol cravings, diminished brain function, and co-relating health conditions, is a great first step, confiding your drinking problem to others is truly the beginning of recovery.

Figuring out your support system early on can be instrumental in your recovery process. Recovery can be isolating, but having people behind you showing support is very encouraging. Whether it’s your family members, your closest friends, a neighbor from across the street, or someone you work with, finding someone you trust to talk about your struggles is helpful in the recovery process.

For those that don’t feel comfortable sharing with anyone, there is a major benefit of entering into sober spaces or Alcoholics Anonymoussupport group meetings geared towards addiction. Here, you are both anonymous and understood. Building community in sober spaces can help you to open up and confide in those around you for support.

Going through alcohol-related addiction and drug abuse alone is heartbreaking, but it can be more difficult to uphold your goals without support in recovery.

Along the same lines, consulting your primary healthcare provider for medical advice is an important step. Even short-termalcohol misuse or an evening of binge drinking can lead to negative health effects and risk factors for other health conditions.

If you don’t feel like you have a trusted support group, you can always call the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s helpline. While not a trusted family member, a SAMHSA representative can listen to your confession and guide you toward treatment providers and smart recovery options.

2. Think About the Positives and Negatives of Alcohol

You may be thinking: Positives? What positives?

It’s important to understand why you might associate alcohol addiction with positive things in your life so that you can get to the bottom of your reasoning. For instance, some might feel more confident and less anxious in social settings if they are drinking.

Isn’t it positive to be more outgoing? Yes, but not when you need alcohol to express that side of you!

The positives of drinking might be:

    • It helps to forget any stress.
  • It is a way for you to relax and have fun.

The negatives of drinking are:

  • It can cost a lot of money.
  • You can wake up feeling very mentally and physically unwell.
  • It gets in the way of jobs, school, or relationships.
  • It can contribute to health problems down the road, like heart disease, high blood pressure, liver disease, and cirrhosis.

Then you can reframe the question as, “what positive things could come out of me not drinking?”. You might be able to hold onto your responsibilities better and feel better both physically and mentally.

You can save money and focus your time and energy on new hobbies and experiences. You can meet people who support you and want the best for you. The list goes on and on!

3. Cutting Back vs. Quitting

Not everyone has the goal of quitting using alcohol immediately. Quitting cold turkey can be very difficult and cause adverse reactions like alcohol withdrawal, especially when you try to do it alone and not in a treatment facility.

If your goal is to quit drinking alcohol, your best bet is to undergo the detoxification process inside a treatment center where you can be monitored and cared for properly. This is especially true for heavy drinking and long-term alcohol abuse, where the effects of alcohol withdrawal may be stronger.

It may be easier to start trying to cut back your alcohol consumption and go from there. You can remove alcohol from your house, so you aren’t tempted to have a drink on you at all times and limit the nights you go out to eat or to a bar.

You should record how often you drink to better understand how much you consume in a day, a week, and a month. This will help you come up with more attainable goals for your detox and recovery process.

4. Set Goals and Keep Them

When entering into alcohol rehabilitation, you will want to set goals for yourself that are actually achievable. If you set goals that are too big or premature, you may let yourself down, which can be very discouraging.

Instead, set small, realistic goals — as many as you want! Checking things off can feel really good, but boxes that go unchecked for too long can cause stress and feelings of defeat.

Consider some of the following goals and then create some that are specific and unique to you:

  • I will stop drinking on weekdays.
  • I will be able to hold a job for at least three months.
  • I will spend X hours with my family/friends daily.
  • I will limit my weekday drinking to two drinks a day.
  • I will quit drinking by (date).

Share your goals with trusted people around you so that they can help hold you accountable. Don’t be afraid to ask for more support, and don’t feel discouraged if you don’t reach a goal. Instead, rewrite the goal and set out to try again.

5. Look Into Entering Treatment

You can begin recovery at any point, but it can be more difficult without entering a treatment center. The goal of many addiction treatment centers is to come up with personalized alcohol treatment plans that pinpoint your specific healthcare needs.

Treatment centers often provide an individual with around-the-clock care and various treatment options like behavioral health therapy and exercise. Plus, treatment centers are meant to help people who suffer from addiction, so getting help at one can help you on the path to recovery.

Get Help With Soba Recovery

Treatment centers like Soba Recovery in San Antonio, Texas, can help you get the treatment you need to overcome alcohol addiction and other substance use disorders. It may not be easy, but with the support from trained professionals who are there to help, it feels like you can accomplish anything.

Soba Recovery works to develop a plan specific to your needs so that we can help treat all aspects of your addiction. By providing services like detoxification to help with withdrawal symptoms, inpatient or intensive outpatient, and sober living, you can match with the right recovery method.

Everyone responds to treatment differently, so it’s important to look into both your mental health and physical health needs. With individual and group therapy sessions, you can build community and trust within yourself.

Reach out today if you or a loved one could benefit from the treatment services here at Soba Recovery. To find recovery from alcohol addiction, you should begin your journey today!


The Cycle of Alcohol Addiction | NIAAA

Chapter 5—Specialized Substance AbuseTreatment Programs | NCBI

Benefits Of Peer Support Groups In The Treatment Of Addiction | NCBI

SAMHSA’s National Helpline | SAMHSA

What Does a Substance Abuse Counselor Do?

If you’ve ever been interested in helping people with substance abuse issues or have struggled with addiction, you might be wondering what a substance abuse counselor does. Whether you’ve come across one or want to be one, understanding their skillset and job duties can give you a better idea of their purpose.

Substance abuse counselors can wear many hats and be helpful in various settings. They must be prepared to deal with more than just substance abuse issues. Substance abuse is not often an isolated condition and has other co-occurring disorders that need to be treated accordingly.

A substance abuse counselor can bring a lot of good into your life and help you back onto the right track. Keep reading to learn more about what substance abuse counselors do and how they are helpful to society.

What Is a Substance Abuse Counselor?

A substance abuse counselor helps someone experiencing substance abuse disorder with treatment and support. They are trained to work with those suffering from drug and alcohol abuse and help to come up with specialized plans to treat specific patients.

Addiction counselors can work in various settings, like inpatient care, outpatient treatment programs, case management, hospitals, mental hospitals, or private healthcare practices. Wherever they end up, the goal is to treat substance abuse and find ways to get a person back on track, happier and healthier than ever.

Substance abuse counselors never know what they will tackle in a day. Addiction is a very difficult and heartbreaking disease, so a counselor will have to be strong to endure the same pain every day.

It’s not all about coming up with treatment plans. Drug abuse counselors have many tasks, so a unique skill set is essential.

Skills Needed for the Job

To be successful and helpful as a substance abuse counselor, you must be patient and willing. The job is not easy and comes with many ups and downs. Every day could throw something at you that you’ve never experienced before, so being prepared and collected can go a long way.

Some skills that substance abuse counselors should possess are:

  • Patience: Substance abuse counselors must practice patience every day. Addiction recovery is not linear, and plans get skewed frequently. People will relapse, but that only means they need their counselor even more, to show up for them.
  • Empathy: Many people attach shame and guilt to their addiction, so you must learn how to be empathetic towards all people. The patient seeking help is likely embarrassed about needing help, but welcoming people as they are and giving them everything you have will be rewarding.
  • Compassion: An addiction counselor should want to help others in need. This can’t be something that isn’t natural for you; compassion shows people that you really are putting your best foot forward. Someone seeking help for their substance abuse disorder doesn’t want to feel like an obligation or burden. They want someone who believes in them!
  • Activelistening: Substance abuse counselors need to practice active listening skills. If you listen without judgment and focus on being as welcoming and open as possible, it’s easier for those struggling to open up about their issues. You have to listen to what is said to form your own opinions on how to treat them while also understanding what is being asked of an individual.

The History of Substance Abuse Counseling

Substance abuse counseling is a bit newer than other mental health counselors and medical practices. How society treats substance abuse now is much different than how it was treated 50 or 100 years ago.

People used to (and some still do) carry very negative connotations when it comes to substance abuse. Many people used to view it as a moral failure or flaw under control by that individual. It wasn’t until more recently that substance abuse and addiction became seen as mental and physical disorders that could be treated.

The need for substance abuse counselors came about once it became understood that society and those struggling with addiction would benefit. While therapists could be useful, someone specializing in substance use disorders would better understand the disease and how to best combat it.

Education Requirements

When someone wants to become a substance abuse counselor, they must undergo multiple years of schooling. They will need at least a bachelor’s degree in substance abuse counseling or a related mental health field.

Some counselors will go for their master’s degree or doctorate degree because it can help them climb the ladder and get into more professional developmental settings.

Different states have different requirements for this credential, so you will have to look into yours specifically by state. You usually need to be licensed by the state to practice mental health counseling of any kind.

Examples of state requirements for licensure may include:

  • Graduation from an accredited alcohol and drug counselor degree program
  • Coursework in addiction studies, human services, social science, and behavioral health
  • Established work experience
  • A set number of clinical experience hours
  • References from other addiction professionals
  • A certain amount of continuing education per year

Substance Abuse Counselors: What Do They Do?

To best understand what a substance abuse counselor does, you should know what some of the tasks they do. Substance abuse counselors might have a range of job functions, and not everyone does the same work.

Generally, a substance abuse counselor works to provide a patient with a specialized treatment plan, education surrounding substance abuse, and resources and support needed to have a successful recovery journey.

Education on Substance Abuse

There is a lack of education that becomes apparent when you discuss substance abuse in society. There are many negative associations it has, and though many know that it’s not a contagious disease, it is often treated as such.

Very vulnerable populations, like homeless people, people experiencing poverty, people experiencing abuse, and people with mental illness, find themselves struggling with substance abuse. One job a substance abuse counselor has is to educate these people about substance abuse and how it can impact their lives.

Counselors will inform about the effects of substance abuse on a person, sharing with people the risks of addiction. If there is a lack of education about drugs and alcohol and the impacts that they can have, it is more likely that substances end up being abused at some point in that person’s life.

Individual or Group Therapy Sessions

Substance abuse counselors often lead both group and individual therapy sessions. A counselor is likely a part of a multidisciplinary team that aims to cover all of their bases. They often work with psychiatrists, law enforcement, the court system, nurses, and other therapists and counselors to come up with treatment plans that work.

Through these group or individual sessions, a substance abuse counselor can learn more about what each individual needs. Through therapy sessions, patients should be able to open up more and find what works best for them.

Creating Individualized Treatment Plans

One of the main things that a substance abuse counselor will do is create individual and specialized treatment plans for their patients. Individuals must be treated for their specific needs, such as chemical dependency or behavioral addiction. However, after just one meeting, you might not know what that plan looks like.

Being in touch and staying up-to-date with a patient’s progress, difficulties, and history can help a counselor make informed decisions when creating a treatment plan. These plans should include the specific goals of the patient and take into consideration a variety of different factors.

Depending on the kind of treatment the patient is undergoing, what kind of trauma they are working through, and what their home life looks like will impact their progress. A specialized treatment plan will be updated and changed as needed to continue to match the patient’s needs.

Referring Patients to Other Resources

Many people who struggle with substance abuse will find it hard to maintain a proper job or school. A substance abuse counselor can help find new spaces for their patients, whether a job, an activity, or a learning program. Knowing where to start to look can be difficult, but a counselor can help by providing those resources.

You can’t do all of the work for them, but you can provide them with the tools necessary to be more successful. You might be able to find treatment centers in the area for them, point them in the direction of support groups, or even share with them sober-friendly experiences, so they don’t have to seek them out themselves.

Setting Up Aftercare

Addiction recovery is not linear, so you must be prepared for relapses or prolonged needs for assistance. Not everyone will recover on the same timeline, so aftercare is essential. If you are working with someone impatient and nervous about returning to the real world, you can set them up with outpatient services or something like sober living.

Providing your patients with options during their recovery process can help them to transition better into their new lifestyle. Plus, coming up with answers to “What’s next?” is overwhelming, so doing the heavy lifting for your patients really pays off.

Teach Healthy Coping Mechanisms

Not only are you providing resources, offering support, and monitoring a person’s process, but you also have to teach your patients different coping mechanisms. Recovery from substance abuse is filled with many triggers and stressors, so identifying them is the first step. A person may not recognize a trigger as being such until they are experiencing it on their own for the first time.

If you can teach your patients healthy coping skills, they can be more prepared when confronted with reality. Identify the triggers and then help come up with a solution. This way, your patient is better equipped to handle whatever comes at them.

Part of your job may also be helping your patient establish a support system of family members or friends. You may also be responsible for providing them with referrals to mental health professionals or social workers.

Keeping Records and Providing Progress Reports

It’s not all fun and games. A large part of being a substance abuse counselor is keeping records, taking notes, providing progress reports, and entering data into a computer or filing system. Keeping track of your patient’s needs and progress will help you maintain their treatment plans more easily.

This part of the job is more tedious and less creative than when using problem-solving skills to come up with solutions. But at the end of the day, keeping track of your patients progress and recording any of their new struggles will help you down the line.

Where To Find Substance Abuse Counselors

Substance abuse counselors can be found in various settings. They are often found in treatment facilities and mental health practices. They have to specialize in substance abuse to understand their job duties fully, but they provide a lot of value in their workplace.

Substance abuse is a tricky and particular disease that isn’t treated like other mental health or physical diseases. It takes much more individualization to treat substance abuse and addiction successfully.

Besides rehabilitation centers and mental health practices, you might find substance abuse counselors in prisons, parole and probation agencies, detoxification centers, halfway houses, government agencies, and private practices.

How To Get Help With Soba Recovery

If you are struggling with substance abuse or have a loved one who is, seeking treatment from a substance abuse recovery center like Soba Recovery Center of San Antonio, Texas, it can bring you great success. Here, substance abuse counselors work with a team of other addiction specialists and medical professionals to create a treatment plan that is right for you.

Getting help can be difficult, but it’s almost always worth it in the end. With the help of trained professionals, you can get around-the-clock care to work with your specific needs. Whether you want to enter into a more intensive outpatient program, stay with us 24/7 inpatient, or need to undergo the detoxification process, your substance abuse counselor will be there with you every step of the way.

To reach your goals, you need to seek help from people who can help create a plan and then assist you in maintaining those goals. For substance abuse, accountability can go a long way! We here at Soba aim to supply you with all the equipment you may need to succeed in your recovery journey.


TAP 21 Addiction Counseling Competencies: The Knowledge, Skills, and Attitudes of Professional Practice | SAMHSA

Substance Use, Academic Performance, and Academic Engagement Among High School Seniors | NCBI

The Key to Individualized Addiction Treatment is Comprehensive Assessment and Monitoring of Symptoms and Behavioral Change | NCBI

Support Groups: A Complete Guide To Getting Help

Support Groups: A Complete Guide To Getting Help

Addiction is a very isolating disease. Many people who struggle with addiction find that going through recovery alone is a very difficult task to complete. Building community and finding support from people around you can help you to overcome your addiction.

Asking for help is not easy for everyone, but it’s necessary for recovery. You can take advantage of many resources during your recovery process, including entering treatment centers or becoming a part of support groups. You may feel alone, but there are plenty of avenues to lead you to others struggling with similar issues.

If you’ve wondered how support groups work or can help, keep reading to find out more.

What Is a Support Group?

A support group doesn’t always have to be geared toward addiction or substance use. When a group of people comes together to offer emotional support and care to others struggling with a similar challenge, that is considered a support group.

You may have support groups for grief, mental health disorders, disabilities, or caregiving on top of groups dedicated to addiction. A support group offers a safe space for people who may be struggling with the same issues.

It can be hard for outsiders to fully understand the struggles you face with addiction, but others who have gone through or are going through addiction are more likely to relate. Here you can be offered support services, tips, anecdotes, and information about how addiction can manifest and how to treat it.

You may learn coping skills or methods from group members who have practiced them. It’s also a way to feel justified and comforted if one pathway doesn’t work out for you. You’d be surprised at how many support groups there are for issues you didn’t think anyone else struggled with!

Types of Support Groups

There are various support groups, and you might find some more helpful than others. The main three that you can enter into are a 12-step program, often geared towards drugs or alcohol, mutual support groups led by peers, or therapy groups led by mental health professionals.

Additionally, there is the ability to enter online support groups where you can find support from all over the world and build connections without leaving your house. Whatever works best for you and will help you on your path to recovery!

12-step Programs

Twelve-step programs are often associated with drug and alcohol rehab because there is an emphasis on the 12-step program created by Alcoholics Anonymous. These groups will sometimes be led by peers or sponsors who once struggled with addiction.

In these groups, you can work together to enter into recovery with the support of individuals searching for the same outcomes. This approach can be more structured, which might be helpful to those looking to get back on track. It allows you to follow a path and take your time getting to the destination.

Mutual Support Groups

In mutual support groups, you may not get professional advice from someone, but that doesn’t mean it’s any less invaluable. Mutual support groups are run by peers trained in how to facilitate and lead these groups but aren’t medical or mental health professionals. Instead, they are facilitators who are or have dealt with similar issues.

In these peer-led support group settings, members will share their stories, what their goals are, what has and has not been working for them, and work to inspire and uplift everyone else in attendance. Here you can form great connections with people struggling with the same issues and not feel pressured or judged by anyone in the circle.

Therapy Groups

If you attend a treatment facility, you might be entered into a therapy group led by mental health professionals and therapists specializing in mental health care. These groups are more geared towards specific issues, such as mental health conditions and mental illness, and are put together by a specific provider.

You may not be in treatment but still want to attend a group therapy session. This might be covered under your insurance, and you can talk to your primary care physician about finding a therapy group for your specific needs.

Online Support Groups

Not everyone can dedicate hours of their week to traveling and attending a group meeting, but they still want the benefits and social support that come with it. We have access to the wonderful world wide web in today’s society. Online support groups are gaining more popularity due to their flexibility.

This might not be the most preferred method of support groups because there can sometimes feel like a lack of connection due to being online, but do what’s best for you. Whether on chat functions or zoom, online groups are out there! If you cannot attend in-person meetings, doing the next best thing can still allow you to gain that sense of support in these online communities.

Benefits of Support Groups

Getting help for your addiction can be scary; the last thing you want to feel is isolation. Being vulnerable about your issues and opening up to others can help you to relieve stress and gain confidence. Addiction can lower your self-esteem but finding community is a great way to build it back up.

You can learn a lot from joining support groups that will help you on your path to recovery.

Building Community

An ideal part of joining a support group for your addiction is the community that you build from it. If you are the only person struggling with addiction in your friend group or among your family members, you might not always feel like they understand your struggles and where you are coming from. In a support group for addiction, you meet individuals with similar experiences who know exactly what you’re going through.

Community and support are key in the recovery process. People can confide in strangers who have undergone similar struggles and learn how to lessen their emotional burdens. You might have many unanswered questions, but you are encouraged to ask them in support groups. This is where you can learn a lot from other people struggling with substance abuse.

Learning Coping Strategies

You will likely try several coping mechanisms throughout your recovery to get through your addiction. Not everyone responds the same to each mechanism, so it’s about finding what works for you.

What’s great about support groups is that you are thrown into a space where other people have tried out things you’ve never even thought of to help you cope. You learn a lot about what works and what doesn’t work for others going through a similar issue. This allows you to try out methods that have worked for others.

Having this open dialogue and discussing what others have done to help their recovery process can open up a path you may never have tried to take.

Maintaining Momentum

Support groups are there for one thing: to support you. Many people think they have to go through addiction and addiction recovery alone. If you’re thinking this way, isn’t it likely that someone else out there is too? You can find these people and then work towards encouraging them and providing unwavering support. When you act this way for others, it begins to reflect back on your own journey.

Keeping up with momentum is really tricky when it comes to recovery. Relapsing is very real and happens to many people throughout their recovery process. Support groups help to maintain this momentum and encourage people to keep pushing forward.

Promoting self-care and advocacy

Support groups also promote self-care practices so that you can recover and live your life! These groups help to teach you about preserving yourself with self-care tips, organization and management tools, resources in case of emergencies, and other care services.

It can be difficult to advocate for yourself and your own happiness, but support groups teach you to be kinder to yourself. The outcome of a support group is to enter into the world confidently, knowing that other people have your back just as much as you have your own.

Getting Help at Soba Recovery Center

If this sounds like something you could benefit from, consider entering an addiction recovery treatment center like Soba Recovery in San Antonio, Texas. Along with other services like detoxification, inpatient, and outpatient, Soba Recovery offers therapy group sessions with other individuals struggling with similar addictions.

Here you can connect with people in your area who are looking to enter into recovery but just need more support to succeed. Building each other up and helping along the way is what Soba Recovery’s support groups aim for.

Reach out to a representative if you are interested in learning more about the recovery services offered here at Soba.


The Effectiveness Of Support Groups: A Literature Review | University of Wollongong

12-Step Interventions and Mutual Support Programs for Substance Use Disorders: An Overview | NCBI

Benefits Of Peer Support Groups In The Treatment Of Addiction | NCBI