How Smoking Can Hurt Your Sobriety

substance abuse treatment centers in wilmington NCGetting sober means developing a healthier lifestyle. Most treatment programs promote a holistic approach to quitting alcohol or drugs that includes giving up all vices that are harmful, including smoking cigarettes.

In the past smoking may have been seen as a stress reliever or calming tool for someone in the process of giving up drugs or alcohol, but the days of allowing one bad habit to replace another may be gone. If you're searching for outpatient substance abuse treatment centers in Wilmington NC, look no further! Legacy Freedom of Wilmington can help you. Call today for more information.

How Smoking Can Hurt Your Sobriety

If you were the type to have a drink in one hand and a cigarette in the other, you know how hard it is to break the connection between the two. A recent research study found that the connection may not just be a force of habit.

A group of researchers at Baylor College of Medicine found that people may crave alcohol when they’re smoking because nicotine can increase the stress hormones that the alcohol suppresses. Drinking alcohol causes a euphoric feeling when the brain releases dopamine. However, if someone also smoked a cigarette, it would decrease that feeling. The brain learns from patterns, so now if a former drinker smokes cigarettes without alcohol, the brain will still look for that substance that countered the stress hormones from the nicotine. Those cravings for a drink someone may feel while smoking could put them at a greater risk of relapse.

Treatment programs that encourage an overall healthier lifestyle will probably suggest that smokers give up that habit along with drugs or alcohol. Of course, since over 80 percent of alcoholics are smokers, it can be a hard task to take on. The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcohol abuse reports that of recovering alcoholics, 85 percent still smoke, which makes up over three times more than smokers in the general population.

Some people still think that smoking is okay as long as a person gives up the real threat - drugs or alcohol. While those can be more harmful than cigarettes, smoking has its own risks. The leading cause of death among smokers in the U.S. is heart disease, which is one of the many illnesses caused by smoking.  It’s noted that recovering alcoholics are more susceptible to cancer or heart disease caused by smoking because of the damage already done to their bodies due to drugs or alcohol.’

Another reason to quit smoking in recovery is because it can help the brain recover faster. Long term, heavy drinkers may experience some form of brain damage because of alcohol, but it can be reversed somewhat when they stop drinking. People who continue to smoke don’t see as quick of a recovery process, according to research.

And, face it, smoking is an addiction and it has harmful and even fatal consequences. If someone is going to give up alcohol or drugs because he or she wants a better, healthier life and a future free of addiction, giving up all vices makes sense. Why not fight both battles at once rather than leave one for later?

Affordable Substance Abuse Treatment Centers in Wilmington NC | Legacy Freedom

Do you have a family member, or loved one that struggles with substance abuse issues? Have they turned to drugs or alcohol to deal with life? If so, you probably know it’s time to get help. Call Legacy Freedom Center today to find out how we're different from the other substance abuse treatment centers in Wilmington NC. We can get your son or daughter the help they need to live the life they deserve.

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