Six Benefits of a Recovery Lifestyle

Six Benefits of a Recovery Lifestyle

Living a life of recovery begins with proper treatment for drug and alcohol addiction. When a person admits she has a problem with substance abuse and reaches out for help, she begins a journey that will change her life forever. Treatment in a rehab facility usually begins with detox. Detox gives the body the chance to rid itself of the toxins of the drug. Once detox is over, getting the proper diagnosis is crucial to successful rehab. Many people who struggle with substance abuse have undiagnosed and untreated mental illness. At a Dual Diagnosis treatment center, treating mental illness and addiction simultaneously is the goal of every program. When mental illness symptoms are properly controlled by medication and therapy, addiction specialist are able to get to the heart of the drug abuse. Through individual, group and family therapy sessions, the person struggling with addiction can learn to live an addiction-free life. Once treatment has ended, getting involved in an ongoing support group is key to staying sober. Ongoing support groups provide a safe place to share feelings and emotions, struggles and victories, with others on the same recovery path. Support groups also provide an important social outlet for those learning to live life free from the control of addiction.

During rehab, the addict learns to identify relapse triggers and how to deal with drug cravings in healthy ways. Positive changes in one area spill over to other parts of life. The person in recovery begins to see the many benefits of living a recovery lifestyle. The following six benefits of recovery are just a few of the ways recovery can change you or your loved one’s life for the better:

  1. A Healthy Body

While in rehab, you learned how drugs and alcohol affect your physical body. Malnutrition[i], insomnia, hypertension, heart disease and liver disease are just a few of the side effects that can result from drug abuse. Ending your dependence on a substance to feel and function normally immediately puts your body into healing mode. Although it can take a lifetime to completely recover from the physical side effects of addiction, ending your drug use and living a life of recovery gives your immune system a chance to heal and do the important work of guarding your body against disease.

Rehab programs typically include exercise classes that teach the importance of staying active to promote health. Regular exercise helps you fight drug cravings and maintain a healthy state-of-mind. Rehab programs also feature classes on nutrition. Making healthy food choices after starving your body of vital nutrients helps boost your immune system and makes your ability to fight drug cravings stronger. Living a life of recovery helps your body continue to heal on a daily basis.

  1. A Healthy Mind

Drug rehab helps you learn what substances do the mind. Discovering how your mind has been controlled by something outside of yourself encourages you in your fight to regain control. During rehab, your rehab specialists encourage the use of healthy self-talk through Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. This type of therapy as well as others, helps retrain your brain to make beneficial choices. The more positive choices you make, the easier it becomes. That’s not to say your struggle with the temptation to use immediately gets easier, but with time, practice and patience your mind can become healthier, quickly identifying and changing negative thoughts to positive ones.

  1. Healthy Sleep Patterns

Healthy sleep patterns improve cognitive function and energy levels throughout the day.[ii] Lack of sleep or too much sleep can be a symptom of drug addiction. When a person abuses drugs he or she may be so wound up at the end of the day that sleep is impossible. On the other hand, his drug of choice may make him sleepy most of the time. During rehab treatment you or your loved one will be put on a consistent sleep schedule. Getting into the habit of sleeping an appropriate amount of time, at the right times, gives your body the chance to fully rest. Living one day at a time without using drugs, encourages restful, restorative sleep. This gives you the strength you need to make good decisions while resisting drug cravings.

  1. Healthier Relationships

When a person is eating right, resting well and getting plenty of exercise, his relationships are better.[iii] Having your life in order makes it easier to interact with those you love and work with in healthy and productive ways. Adopting a recovery lifestyle and staying in a recovery frame of mind makes you a kinder, more focused person who is easier to get along with.

  1. A New Sense of Hope

Living a recovery lifestyle makes you better able to hope that things will continue to get better. When you were addicted to drugs, the only thing on your mind was using again. There was no room to hope for a different future. But a life of recovery means hope is a daily part of your life. You see potential where there was none before and your successes and struggles so far give you the courage you need to keep moving forward.

  1. The Ability to Set Goals and Reach Them

With a new sense of hope comes the ability to set goals and reach them. While addicted you lived each moment for the next high. Your new life of recovery allows you to set goals for your family, friendships and career because life is about so much more than getting and using drugs.

Finding Help for Addiction

If you or a loved one struggles with addiction, we are here for you. Call our toll-free helpline, available 24 hours a day, to speak to an admissions coordinator about available treatment options.


[i] Medline Plus. “Diet  and Substance Abuse Recovery.” Accessed December 17, 2015.

[ii] American Psychological Association. “Why Sleep is Important and What Happens When you Don’t Get Enough.” Accessed December 17, 2015.

[iii] American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy. “Substance Abuse and Intimate Relationships.” Accessed December 17, 2015.