Category Archives: Addictions

Overcoming Internet Addiction: Addiction Counseling In Michigan

internet addiction

Internet addiction is a real problem, one that is often overlooked in addiction counseling programs. Social media, online video sites, forums, discussion boards, and the like are all a potential source of addiction. If your time online is interfering with your life as a whole, these tips will help you step away from the computer.

Identify The Most Addictive Element Of The Internet

In most cases, the internet itself is not a problem – it’s a specific website or set of websites that are addictive. For instance, you may find yourself going on Facebook or YouTube at work, even though it is against company policy. You may also be addicted to a photo or story sharing site, like Reddit or Imgur. Whatever the case may be, you need to know what is triggering your internet addiction. That is the only way to recover from it.

Block Those Websites On Select Devices

Once you know which websites you are most addicted to, block them on certain devices. For example, you may delete the Facebook app from your phone and block the site on your work computer. Then the only way you can access Facebook is from your home computer. You may need to block them altogether, depending on how significant your addiction is. You can slowly incorporate them back into your life once the addiction subsides.

Schedule Your Internet Time

Instead of going online “whenever,” create a schedule for yourself. Only get on the internet for 30 minutes in the morning and an hour at night, well before your bedtime. If need be, you can set a timer for yourself to remind you when to get off the internet. Once your time is up, find a different task to occupy your mind.

Find New Ways To Socialize

One of the biggest driving factors of internet addiction is the desire to socialize. Believe it or not, you can do that without going online! Find a club or organization to get involved with, and start interacting with people in person. The modern age is filled with addictive electronics that pull our attention away from reality. You may be surprised by how little you crave the internet once you find a suitable substitute for your attention.

Work With An Addiction Counselor

If your internet addiction has affected your personal relationships or your productivity at work, you may need help from a professional addiction counselor. Perspectives Of Troy Counseling Centers in Michigan has several specialists on hand to help you with social media addiction, gambling addiction, internet porn addiction, and much more. Give us a call to set up a consultation, and we will help you achieve a better quality of life.

Is Addiction Therapy Really Necessary? MI Addiction Treatment Center

addiction counseling

Is it really necessary to go through therapy for addiction? Can’t I just quit on my own? We get this question a lot when people ask about addiction therapy in Michigan. The short answer is yes, therapy IS essential to addiction recovery. Here’s why…

Reversing Addictive Behaviors Is A Mental Process

In order to fight addiction, you can’t just stop the physical element. Yes, putting your cigarettes away for good will prevent you from smoking them, but that won’t stop the cravings. Eventually the temptation will become overwhelming, and you may find yourself even more addicted than you ever were before. Therapy prevents that from happening.

With addiction counseling, you will learn how to stop cravings before they start and how to eliminate the root cause of your addiction. Are you drinking because you have severe depression? Do you turn to drugs to reduce stress in your life? Your therapist will help you uncover these answers and more so you don’t fall back into old habits.

You Need To Know What Might Trigger Your Addiction In The Future

No one wants to think about a relapse, but the fact is that it can happen. This is usually the result of an unexpected trigger that brings back old feelings or urges. For instance, you may drive through a neighborhood you used to get drugs from on your way to visit a family member. This doesn’t seem like a big deal until a flood of memories rush into your mind.

Your addiction therapist will help you identify potential triggers before they happen so you can be prepared to face them.

Learn How To Cope Without Addictive Substances

Drugs, alcohol, sex, gambling – nearly all addictions start out as coping mechanisms. Something stressful happens in your life, and you find something to temporarily numb the pain. With addiction therapy, you can learn about more effective coping mechanisms that won’t hurt your body or your social interactions. There are plenty of solutions out there, and your counselor will find the best ones for you specifically.

Counseling Isn’t Just For You

The primary focus of addiction counseling is to help someone overcome addiction. That doesn’t mean you’re the only one that benefits from the process. If your addiction has hurt your relationship with friends or family members, counseling will help you mend those bridges and improve your quality of life. At Perspectives Of Troy Counseling Centers in Michigan, we offer family counseling, couples counseling, and a range of other therapy programs so you can rebuild relationships in every area of your life. Contact us to schedule a confidential addiction counseling session.

How To Control Stress Eating: Food Addiction Counseling In MI

stress eating

Every person has a unique way of relieving his or her stress. Meditation, hiking, playing sports, reading – these are all healthy and relaxing ways to reduce stress levels. Some people seek temporary comfort in food through a process known as “stress eating.” This can lead to food addiction and unwanted weight gain.

The tips below will help you control stress eating cravings so you can avoid its side effects.

Drink Water Instead Of Eating

When you get the urge to eat outside of meal times, drink water instead. This will fill you up and make you feel less hungry. Water is good for your body, and any food that enters your mouth afterward will absorb some of that water in your stomach. In other words, drinking water before you eat will help you eat less when the time comes.

Find Other Ways To Reduce Stress

Instead of turning to food for stress relief, find other ways to cope with the chaos. If you are overwhelmed by your workload, tell your boss that you have too much on your plate. If you aren’t getting the help you need around the house, talk to your spouse about re-adjusting your responsibilities. Go for a walk, take a yoga class, go on vacation – do what you need to do to keep your stress at a manageable level. After all, there is no stress eating if there is no stress.

Only Eat When You’re Hungry

In many cases, a person will stress eat even when they aren’t hungry. If you get overwhelmed at work, you may reach for a bag of chips without actually thinking about your stomach. Listen to your tummy, not your brain, when it comes to scheduling your eating times. If you only eat when you’re hungry, you won’t have to worry about gaining unexpected weight.

Limit Your Temptations

If you don’t want to munch on cookies all afternoon, don’t keep them in your office. If you spend most of your time at home, rid your shelves of tempting snacks. You can still keep fruit and vegetables on hand, but limit the junk food as much as possible. That way, whatever you end up stress eating won’t go straight to your waist.

Work with a food addiction counselor to learn other ways to control your eating habits, and your self-esteem is sure to skyrocket.

Signs Your Addiction Recovery Is Working: MI Addiction Therapy

addiction recovery

Getting into an addiction recovery program is a solid step in the right direction. This shows that you are committed to your treatment and you want a better life for yourself. The changes won’t happen overnight though. There may come a time when you question just how effective the program really is.

Here are some signs your addiction recovery is working to encourage you to continue your progress.

You Get More Done In The Day

As you progress through your addiction treatment, your productivity levels will naturally increase. The time you used to spend smoking, doing drugs, or drinking can be filled with work around the house, your hobbies, tasks at your job, etc. It may take a little time to notice this at first because your mind will still be focused on the addiction. Continue with the program, and you will get much more accomplished during the day.

You Become More Social

Addictive behaviors can be social experiences, but the quality of your social interactions will be low. For instance, you may be drinking in a room full of people, but your addiction keeps you isolated from group activities. That’s assuming you are coherent enough to know what’s going on. Through addiction recovery, you will become more social and have a better quality of personal experiences. You may develop a new set of friends or get in touch with people you drifted away from during your addiction. The more you surround yourself with positive influences, the faster you can conquer your addiction.

You Feel Less Anxious

People with addictions tend to have high anxiety levels. This could result from a number of circumstances – being worried about people judging you, being afraid that you’ll be caught in possession of illegal substances, feeling a constant need to smoke or drink, and the list goes on. Without the weight of addiction on your shoulders, you will start to feel less stressed. What you once thought was helping you deal with stress is actually holding you back from a stress-free life. Continue to strive toward your goals, and your anxiety symptoms will decrease simultaneously.

You Sleep Better At Night

Some addictive substances may make you drowsy, but that doesn’t mean they help you sleep. If you feel constantly fatigued, it’s probably because your addiction is keeping you from a good night’s rest. With addiction recovery, you will sleep better and wake up feeling more energized. This will further reduce your anxiety and keep your spirits high throughout the day.

You Have Extra Money

If you spend just a little bit of money each time you buy drugs, go to the bar, visit the casino, or the like, you may not realize just how much you’re spending each month. For instance, a person who smokes a pack of cigarettes a day spends an average of $8,500 a year on his or her addiction. Whether you’re tapering off your addiction or completely free from it, you will start to notice more money in your bank account or wallet. This is money that could go toward bills, food, clothing, savings, or future vacations. The longer you remain addiction-free, the more extra money you’ll have on hand.

You Feel Healthier And Happier

Can you remember the last day that you truly felt good, healthy, and happy? One of the biggest side effects of any addiction is the negative mindset after the high. You do whatever it takes to feel that rush of dopamine, only to find yourself disappointed in your own decisions. On top of that, you will feel physically drained from the addiction taking control over your body. That all changes as you complete your treatment program. Depending on what you’re addicted to, you may go through withdrawals for a brief period of time at the beginning of your recovery program. After that though, you’ll feel much healthier and full of life.

Embrace this new chapter in your life – the one you’ve wanted to start for so long. The addiction therapists at Perspectives Of Troy Counseling Centers in Michigan are here to guide you every step of the way.

Budgeting Tips For Shopping Addictions: MI Shopping Addiction Treatment

budgeting tips

Shopping addiction and overspending is a common problem for men and women alike. This condition can be tied to low self-esteem, hoarding, relationship struggles, and other addictions. Whether you have recently fallen into shopping addiction or it is something you have struggled with for a long time, there are ways you can control your spending money and subsequently control your addiction. Here are some budgeting tips for shopping addicts, courtesy of our addiction treatment center in Michigan.

Set Up Automatic Withdrawals For Bills

One problem that shopping addicts run into is spending money that should be set aside for bills. Their addiction is so strong that they would rather go to a store than pay for rent, electricity, and other essentials. You can forcefully prevent yourself from doing this by setting your bills up on autopay. Schedule the bill payment dates directly after your pay days so the money doesn’t sit in your account for too long. If you get the impulse to shop, the only money left will be what you can logically spend.

Do NOT Allow Overdrafting On Your Bank Account

When you set up a checking account at a bank, you should be able to opt-in for overdraft. This gives you the chance to pull out more money than you have in the account. Overdrafts can be helpful in an emergency, but they are not ideal for people with shopping addiction. You will have to pay a fee every time your account goes over its limit, and that can quickly send you into debt. It would be better for your card to be declined at a store than for you to rack up excessive fees at your bank.

Only Spend Money From A Certain Card, Account, Or Envelope

The envelope method was a popular budgeting solution decades ago, but most people do not pay their bills in cash anymore. Nevertheless, you could use this to control your shopping addiction. Limit your spending to the money you have set aside in a special envelope in your home. If you do not want to have the money in cash, you could set up a checking account or prepaid card to hold the money on. You don’t want to use a credit card for your shopping money because then you may be tempted to spend more than you have available. Put yourself on a strict budget each month, and you will eventually learn your personal limitations.

For more information about shopping addiction treatment in Michigan, contact Perspectives Of Troy Counseling Centers at (248) 244-8644.

Social Media Addiction: How It Forms And How To Fix It

social media addiction

Social media is just as addictive as gambling, drugs, and alcohol. What seems like harmless social interaction is actually a growing problem that can lead to depression, anxiety, social withdrawal, and much more. No matter how old you are or what background you have, you could find yourself addicted to social media. Let’s take a closer look at how social media addiction forms and what you can do to fix it.

Your Brain LOVES Social Media Notifications

Whenever you see a notification on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and other social media sites, your brain releases a small amount of dopamine. This makes you feel better on a chemical level. Each time you see a text on your phone or a comment notification, your brain gets excited – similar to what your pet experiences when he or she hears a treat bag open up. This is what triggers the addiction and why it is so easy to fall into.

Social Media Gives You A Sense Of Self-Worth

When you see someone liking your picture or replying to a comment you made, you naturally feel better about yourself. In theory, this makes you feel like you have a greater sense of self-worth. Note the term “theory.” What is actually happening is that you’re relying on your phone and computer for social interaction instead of engaging with your peers in person. At the end of the day, you may feel like you have no friends at all because the only time you interact with them is online. This will lower your self-esteem instead of raising it.

How To Fix Social Media Addiction

Social media addiction is a legitimate addiction. If you quit cold turkey, you may find yourself going through withdrawals. This sparks depression, which makes you want to get back on social media – and the cycle continues from there. You don’t have to eliminate Facebook from your life to control your addiction. You just have to learn how to use it in moderation. Here are some quick tips to try:

  • Limit the times in the day when you check your social media accounts (only after work, at least an hour before bed, etc.)
  • Talk to people on the phone instead of texting or using private messages
  • Avoid social media entirely when you’re out with friends or family members. You can share that picture when you get home.
  • Encourage your friends to “unplug” themselves when you go out together so you can truly enjoy your time with one another
  • Work with a professional addiction counseling if you are struggling to overcome your addiction

Michigan Alcoholism Treatment: Avoiding Alcohol At Holiday Parties

holiday parties

Holiday parties are great opportunities to catch up with friends and spend time with family. For recovering alcoholics though, these events are often filled with temptations for their addiction. Whether you are in an alcoholism treatment program right now or you simply want to avoid drinking at a party, the tips below will help you stay sober at your upcoming festivities.

Ask About Alcohol Ahead Of Time

If you have a few different parties to attend during the holidays, you could ask the hosts ahead of time if there will be alcohol present. If that is only the case at some of the parties, you may choose to attend the ones that will not have alcohol. Most of your friends probably already know that you’re trying to avoid alcohol, but it might be nice to remind them before the big day. That way they are fully prepared to support your decision and most likely will not offer you anything to drink.

Bring Your Own Drink

Grab some soda or bottled water before you go to the party and drink that instead. This will save you from having to ask if there is alcohol in the punch or sifting through a fridge full of beer to get a drink. You could also eat/drink a lot before you get to the party so your stomach feels full while you are there. This may prevent you from needing to drink altogether.

Attend A Family-Friendly Party

Most family-friendly parties are designed for parents and children, so they won’t have alcohol present. If given the choice between an all-adult party and one for the whole family, choose the latter. This is a particularly good idea if you have children because you can bring them along for the fun.

Talk To Your Therapist Or Support Group Before

Before you attend your party, meet with your support group or therapist to talk about the upcoming event. Talk about any apprehension you’re feeling and ways you might be able to cope with that when the time comes. At Perspectives Of Troy Counseling Centers, we offer a number of alcoholism treatment programs designed for every stage of recovery. Our alcohol addiction therapists would love to help you conquer your addiction and improve your quality of life as a whole. To learn more about our programs or to schedule an appointment for alcoholism treatment in Michigan, give us a call at (248) 244-8644.

How Paying With Cash Can Save You From Shopping Addiction In Michigan

shopping addiction

Shopping addiction is a big issue in Michigan, especially with the holidays quickly approaching. The thrill of finding great deals for gifts and home items can tempt anyone into excessive spending, but this is dangerous for people who already suffer from shopping addiction. By opting to pay with cash instead of credit cards, you can help control some of your urges to overspend. Here is a look at how paying with cash can save you from shopping addiction.

The Physical Component Of Paying With Cash

When you pay for an item with cash instead of a credit card, you have a visual depiction of where your money is going. You can see a $20 bill turn into a $10 bill, then into a $5 bill and then to nothing at all. You are more likely to hold off on impulse purchases when paying with cash because you have a physical connection with the money you are spending. With a debit or credit card, it may not feel like you are losing much because you’re just swiping a card on a machine. Cash creates a much stronger connection, which will ultimately make you more aware of your spending habits.

The Budgeting Mindset Of Paying With Cash

If you are using a budget to control your shopping addiction, you will have an easier time following that budget with cash than you will with a card. You could use the age-old envelope method to set aside money for various projects, gifts, and plans for the future, or you could make sure that you only bring a certain amount of money with you when you go to a store. That way, you won’t have the option to make an impulse buy even if you feel the urge in the moment.

Recent studies show that people who pay for items with credit cards are willing to pay twice as much for the same item as someone paying with cash. Cash makes you more conscientious of what you’re buying and the value you’re getting for your money. You’re more likely to make a wise decision if you use cash instead of a card.

Cash Has No Overdraft Options

Unlike debit or credit cards that may allow you to spend more than your available account balance, cash is finite. There are no overdraft options. You can only spend what you have with you. Overdrafting a bank account or spending past your credit limit could lead you into serious debt because of the fees associated with your purchases. You can save yourself that hassle by opting for cash payments instead.

Quick Tips For Using Cash To Control Shopping Addiction Urges

If you are not used to paying with cash or you have not had success with that in the past, here are some tips to get you started:

  • Do not get a debit card for your bank account. This will force you to go to the bank every time you want to withdraw money, which will make it harder for you to overspend.
  • Leave credit and debit cards at home. You may be tempted to keep cards around for emergencies, but doing so may create more temptation. If you do end up needing your cards, you should be able to go back to your home to get them.
  • Plan a budget for your shopping trip ahead of time. Only carry a little more than the amount of money you think you will spend at a store. You don’t need to have all of your money with you at all times.
  • Set withdrawal limits on your bank account. Use this to control how much money you can pull out per day so you do not make excessive purchases.

If you need more assistance with shopping addiction treatment or other addiction therapy, contact Perspectives Of Troy Counseling Centers in Michigan at (248) 244-8644. We will match you with the perfect addiction counselor for your specific needs.

MI Addiction Therapy: Fighting Holiday Shopping Addiction Urges

holiday shopping addiction

Shopping addiction is a prominent issue in America that often leads to financial stress, excessive debt, social withdrawal, and other addictive behaviors. This time of the year can be particularly difficult for shopping addicts because of the upcoming holidays. Sales and the need to buy gifts create the perfect reason for a shopping addict to play into his or her urge to spend money – but that doesn’t mean that’s what you should do. In the tips below, we will help you fight holiday shopping addiction urges so you can make it through the season successfully.

Put Yourself On A Strict Gift Budget

Budgeting is a powerful tool for shopping addicts. If you can set spending limits (and stick to them!), you can prevent yourself from going overboard with your holiday shopping. There are several ways you can go about this:

  • Set a specific budget for each person on your shopping list
  • Set a budget for each gift you get in general (Example: “Don’t buy anything over $20”)
  • Set a weekly or monthly budget for gift giving to spread the expenses out over time
  • Set a limit for the total amount of money you can spend on gifts this year

No matter how you approach this, you have to be realistic with your budgeting. Don’t set a budget of $100 per person if you have 25 people on your list. Even if you are known for getting lavish gifts for people on Christmas, doing so will only fuel the satisfaction you get from shopping. That’s what got you addicted in the first place. Luckily, our addiction counselors in Metro Detroit, MI are here to help you every step of the way so you don’t fall back into old habits. We will help you get through this tempting time.

Don’t Think A “Good Deal” Is A “Good Excuse”

Many shopping addicts are naturally bargain shoppers. Their addiction is fueled by the desire to find a good deal. Just because you find a product at a good price doesn’t mean you have to buy it. By all means, look for bargains when you go out, but don’t use those bargains as excuses to purchase more than you need. Focus on the budget you have set out and the people you plan to buy for to help you stay on track.

Avoid Credit Card Spending

Credit cards are incredibly dangerous for shopping addicts. It’s easy to swipe a card at a register and temporarily forget the debt it is creating. In fact, there have been a number of studies over the last few years that people spend less and are more conscientious about their buying habits when paying with cash instead of paying with a credit card. If you want to tie this into your budgeting plan, you can set up envelopes with cash for each week, each person, each gift, etc. Then you have a tangible amount of money that you can visualize for each transaction. The more accountable you are, the better you will be with controlling your shopping addiction around the holidays.

Choose Specific Days To Gift Shop

There is nothing wrong with taking advantage of Black Friday specials or other sales going on in your area. The main goal here is to set specific dates for your shopping schedule, rather than looking for gifts at every store you go to. This controls impulse buying, which can become an addictive behavior all on its own. If you go to the grocery store, get groceries. If you go to an office supply store for staples, get staples. Save the gift shopping for the days you have specifically set aside for it, and you will learn to control your urges over time.

What’s The Difference Between Substance Abuse And Substance Dependence?

substance dependence

The terms substance abuse and substance dependence are often used interchangeably, but there are slight differences between the definitions. Neither condition is easy to overcome, but with substance abuse counseling and addiction therapy, you can learn to overcome your urges, fight long-term habits, and achieve a better quality of life. In this guide, we will explore the differences between substance abuse and substance dependence, as well as ways you can receive substance abuse treatment in Metro Detroit, Michigan.

Definition Of Substance Abuse vs. Substance Dependence

Substance abuse is defined as an increased desire for drugs, alcohol, or other substances that could cause potential harm to the body. Substance dependence is a physical need for a specific substance. In other words, substance abuse leads to substance dependence. As a person continues to use drugs or alcohol as a coping mechanism, he or she eventually develops a dependence on that substance.

Both substance abuse and substance dependence can have a major impact on a person’s life. The growing addiction can harm a person’s ability to function at work and in social settings. The effects of the drugs and alcohol may also affect a person’s ability to perform basic tasks, like driving, staying on schedule, keeping up with personal hygiene, and maintaining an organized environment. Whether you suffer from substance abuse or substance dependence, you can benefit from professional therapy like the treatment programs we offer at Perspectives Of Troy Counseling Centers in Metro Detroit.

Warning Signs Of Substance Abuse And Substance Dependence

Substance abuse and substance dependence have similar warning signs. The signs of substance dependence may be a little more apparent than those of substance abuse simply because of the difference in severity. Some of the most common indicators of substance abuse and dependence include:

  • Lack of focus or an inability to pay attention to details
  • Incoherent speech or talking about irrelevant subjects
  • Social withdrawal or sudden changes in social behaviors (going out to the bar frequently, not going out at all, etc.)
  • Sleeping at random moments in the day, including at work or school
  • Declining grades or productivity at work
  • Slurred speech
  • Rapid weight loss or weight gain
  • Changes in sexual desires or behaviors
  • Loss of energy and increased fatigue
  • Physical or emotional aggression and irritability
  • Dilated or pinned pupils
  • Heart palpitations, seizures, vomiting, sweating, headaches and sinus problems
  • Flush cheeks or redness around the mouth and nose
  • Decreased personal hygiene, including physical care (bathing, brushing hair, brushing teeth) and environmental care (clean house, car, or office)

Even if these symptoms are not present, you may be able to notice substance abuse in yourself or someone you know just by monitoring changes in behaviors. Occasional drug use alcohol consumption can quickly lead to addiction, and that addiction can turn into dependence. If possible, try to take care of the substance abuse at the first signs so you can avoid the hardship of breaking a long-term habit or dependency.

How To Get Substance Abuse Treatment In Metro Detroit, MI

If you or someone you know is in need of substance abuse treatment in Metro Detroit, MI, Perspectives Of Troy Counseling Centers has more than 30 counselors and therapists available to assist you. Each of our mental health and addiction counseling professionals specializes in a unique area of the field, so you will always receive top-quality care personalized to fit your needs. Our counseling sessions are confidential and completely judgment-free, so you can speak out about your struggles and experiences. We want to help you achieve the productive, successful life you deserve because we truly care about your well-being.

Don’t let substance abuse control your life. Contact (248) 244-8644 to schedule an appointment with an addiction counselor in Metro Detroit, MI.