Guest Post: Suicidal Thoughts and Addiction

fruitSuicidal Thoughts and Addiction: Preventing Tragedy During Recovery

Many people who find themselves suffering from an addiction will find themselves experiencing suicidal thoughts. People who abuse substances are more likely to attempt suicide, particularly if they have a mental health condition.
Taking measures to prevent or treat suicidal thoughts during addiction recovery, instead of focusing solely on the addiction itself, is a wise approach to your recovery. While your treatment plan should have aspects that cover mental health, there are some things you can do to keep your spirits up and depression at bay.
Learn to Meditate
Meditation is a very powerful tool to have at your disposal. The ability to calm your mind and quiet negative thoughts can be what gets you through this difficult period of recovery. People who meditate daily have been found to be happier, less stressed, and more mentally sound than those who do not meditate or only meditate in the face of difficulty. If you can incorporate meditation into your daily routine, you may be surprised by how much better you feel.
Eat Well
Changing your diet and coping with suicidal thoughts may not seem connected. However, when people suffer from nutritional gaps, their mental health can suffer greatly. By altering your diet to include all the important nutrients, you are boosting your mood and limiting your risk of depression.
Find an Enjoyable Hobby
Hobbies are wonderful distractions that allow you to keep your hands and mind busy. By having an enjoyable activity to turn to when your mood goes south, you are cultivating a healthy coping mechanism and teaching yourself to feel better rather than spiraling into the realm of suicidal thinking.
Crafts such as crocheting, scrapbooking, quilting, and whittling are all fun ways to keep yourself feeling positive. Of course, there are many ways you can improve your mood. In fact, some therapy plans will utilize art therapy as a way to recover.
Exercise Regularly
When you’re feeling down and out, it’s often difficult to convince yourself to get up and exercise. But if exercising is a normal part of your routine, you may find it easier to reap the benefits of exercise when you need them most.
Exercise produces positive endorphins that improve mood and limit stress. It’s one of the things you can do to help yourself through recovery, and it’s even used as part of some therapy groups. Pick something you enjoy that gets you active such as yoga, hiking, or swimming.
Finding ways to improve your life go hand in hand with coping with suicidal thoughts. Positive lifestyle changes such as exercising, eating better, finding a hobby, and meditating are all excellent ways to ensure that your mental health stays strong throughout the recovery process. There are many other ways you can tackle suicidal thoughts, and you should always inform your counselor of any depression issues you are having. They should be addressed in your treatment as well as at home. However, it is never a bad idea to learn to help yourself when your recovery gets tough.
Image via Pixabay by Mittmac.

Steve Johnson has written two guest posts for this blog: 4 Key Recovery Concepts for Suicide Prevention and Combating Depression and Is Your Work Life Out of Balance?

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2 Responses to Guest Post: Suicidal Thoughts and Addiction

  1. This could also apply to people with chronic debilitating pain of which I deal with along with the occasional dark depression.