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Medicine Wheel Clinic - 770-277-7958

85 Auburn Park Drive, Auburn, GA 30011


$13 per day, $40 to get started, Intake day on Fridays 5:30am-10:00am. 

Medicine Wheel Clinic Self-Care Corner

Information About Self-Care, Substance Misuse, Behavioral Modification, Medication Assisted Treatment, and more.

Welcome To the Medicine Wheel Clinic Self-Care Corner!

We will be posting information on self care, mental health, addiction, and more.  Our hope is to provide more options for patients to have a better understanding of their condition and things they can do to improve quality of life. The information found on this website is not meant to take place of medical advice from a professional.  We are also not endorsing any individuals, schools, organizations, businesses or their practices or other content by posting this material.  It's just a place to share interesting videos and articles our staff has come across related to addiction and self-care.  We hope to post here regularly, but time will tell.  Thanks for reading :)

Medicine Wheel in the Community

08/24/2022

Medicine Wheel Clinic had the privilege of being invited to train Gwinnett County Family Court on the Opioid Epidemic and Medication Assisted Treatment.  We gave a presentation that covered topics such as what caused the Opioid Epidemic, science of addiction, medication assisted treatment, managed levels of care, and success stories.  We were fortunate to have attendees from the court and police department.  If you are interested in hosting a free information session for your organization, please don't hesitate to reach out to [email protected] to schedule.  We would be happy to train your medical facility, school, government agency, church, or other community centered organization on the effects of opiate addiction.  Contact us to learn more about what can be done to save lives and reduce the impact of opioid addiction on the community.


Staying Busy

04/27/2022

Addiction is a very time consuming thing.  Every day you wake up you get a timecard with 24 hours on it.  And you clock in to spend your time on what is important to you.  When you are an unstable addict, the number one priority is usually to find more drugs and consume them.  There is also a ton of time clocking in to deal with the consequences of drug use (like legal problems, family  drama, money problems, etc).  Things that used to fill your life may now seem pointless or even frustrating because you don't enjoy them like you used to.  This can lead some people to isolate or get bored.  Being productive and staying busy helps you in many ways other than just checking an item off your to do list.  It gets your brain in action and reinforces that you can do good things and take care of your body, mind, and spirit.  Anything is better than continuing to risk your life using drugs in isolation.  If you find yourself getting restless consider doing something fun, completing a task, going for a walk, or reaching out to a friend or sponsor.


What is Harm Reduction?

04/15/2022

Below you will find a speech from Jeffrey Hom on harm reduction. Simply put, harm reduction is about reducing the chance that someone will die, harm themselves, or harm the community because of a drug addiction.  Harm reduction seeks to take the stigma out of substance use disorder and do what it takes to save and stabilize lives.  Accepting that you need help for addiction is a process.  We can't help people who die of a drug overdose.  Harm reduction isn't as radical a concept as some might think.  Seat belts, condoms, medications, masks, security, and more are all forms of harm reduction to make risky situations safer.  Some tools that harm reduction organizations use to help addicts are narcan/naloxone distribution to reduce overdose deaths, drug test strips, medication, supervision, and referrals for other needed services.  When it comes to drug addiction, harm reduction alone is not the answer.  There are many levels of care that all play a role in working to help the patient.  Prevention, Harm Reduction, Treatment, and Enforcement can all play an important role because every person's path to recovery and stability is different.  Some people may be able to stop on their own or with a 12 step meeting.  Some people may need to be incarcerated to stop the harm that is being caused to themselves and others.  It's important to see each addict as a patient who is suffering.  They are not disposable or a moral failing.  They are a human being with a damaged brain who is in need of help.


Why is Methamphetamine So Addictive?

03/22/2022

Below you will find an educational video from the Betty Ford Foundation about methamphetamine. It talks at length about meth, why it's so addictive, and how  important it is to receive treatment and recover.  Meth is an extremely powerful stimulant that floods your brain with huge amounts of dopamine (more dopamine than any mind-altering drug, including heroin).  This is why you see people change on meth so quickly.  It basically carpet bombs the part of the brain that drives pleasure and depletes and damages it very quickly so nothing else feels good anymore.  Many people are polysubstance addicted.  What that means is you've developed an addiction to more than one drug.  Meth is a challenging addiction but you can recover from it and improve the quality of your life.  If you are addicted to both opiates and amphetamines, our clinic is a great place for you to start your path to stability.  We care about the unique needs of stimulant addicts and want to help you heal from the effects of methamphetamine use.  It's been estimated that it can take 1-2 years not using meth before the brain returns to normal functioning.  With meth, it truly is one day at a time, especially because the physical, mental, and emotional healing takes time.

Thoughts, Emotions, and Behaviors - Know the Difference

02/12/2022

Using drugs changes the way a person thinks and acts.  Anyone who has used drugs is aware of this and even enjoy some parts of that.  It's fun until those out of control thoughts and feelings begin to create consequences in your life.  Regaining control of your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors is a critical part of getting stable.  At first it's really hard to tell the difference, but with practice you can learn how to identify which it is and take control of how you respond to things.  So what is the difference?


Thoughts

Thoughts are like a picture on a TV screen.  They happen in the rational part of the brain.  Have you ever had racing thoughts where a lot was flashing around in your head and you couldn't stop thinking?  There are techniques you can do to control your thoughts.  If you catch yourself thinking about something upsetting or that makes you want to use, physically change what you are doing and do something sensory.  Go for a walk, eat a piece of ice, smell a strong smell, talk to a friend or sponsor, etc.


Emotions

You are going to have a LOT of mixed emotions when stabilizing from drug addiction.  Drugs change your emotions by changing how your brain works.  It's normal to have mood swings, irritability, anxiety, sadness, and a whole host of other challenging emotions.  But the trade off is you eventually get to have wonderful emotions too (like happiness, pride, relaxation, etc).  Thoughts can cause emotions and emotions are usually harder to control.  Try to stop negative thoughts about drugs or things that make you feel bad before they become emotions or actions.  Your feelings matter.  You need to let yourself feel them.  But feel them fully then let it go, because staying emotional for long periods is not good for your health or recovery.  It's also normal to experience numbness or a difficulty feeling any emotions at all.  Keep going through the motions until you feel genuine good feelings again without drugs.


Behavior

You can think and feel anything, but what really matters is what you do.  Your thinking and feeling self work together to decide what you are going to do and what you do creates the life you are living.  In the moment it can feel like you have no control, but it's actually your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors that are the only things you really have any control over.  If you are super emotional, you can think "hey, I'm going to go take a walk before this gets worse".  If you are super thinky, you can say "hey I see this is going in a bad direction and I'm going to intentionally change the channel on my brain and not think about drugs".  Try not to judge yourself too much for your thoughts and feelings.  Judge yourself by your behaviors.  That's what makes real and lasting change.  Thoughts and feelings come and go, but your behaviors make all the difference.

Common Challenges in Early Recovery

01/31/2022

When you first start working on your addiction there are a lot of challenges that commonly come along with making such a big change.  Be patient with yourself.  Your brain has been damaged by the drugs, but it can improve with time and effort.  Understand that your perceptions of things are not always going to be acurate, especially in the first six months of recovery.  Here are some common challenges people encounter in early recovery and ideas on how to handle them.


Friends and Associates Who Use

  • It's important to have people in your life.  But friends, family and other associates can trigger you to want to use.  Creating new boundaries with people is an important part of the process.  So what can you do?
    • Meet other safe people or prioritize people who are safe to be around.
      • Attend group therapy or 12 step meetings
      • Try new activities or hobbies
      • Join a congregation
      • Plan activities with abstinent friends or family

Anger and Irritability

  • When you first get abstinent from drugs you are going to be irritable.  Your brain is low on feel good chemicals from the drug use and you are doing a lot of work trying to figure out new ways to deal with reality.  Intense emotions of any kind can lead to relapse.  So what can you do?
    • Talk to a counselor, friend, sponsor, help line, or other trusted person.
    • Get some exercise 
    • Take some personal space to calm down
    • If you are experiencing any extreme emotion (rage, crying, etc) for more than 30 minutes, try to change gears.  This is bad for your body and doesn't help resolve what is upsetting you.  Feel your feeling fully then work on a solution or let it go for now.
    • Remind yourself that you are not always going to think rationally because you are healing your brain chemistry

Substances at Home or Work

  • The number one trigger to do drugs is having drugs.  Once they are out of your home, you have bought yourself a ton of time to derail your potential relapse because you have to go somewhere to get drugs.
    • Get rid of all drugs and alcohol. Check all of your hiding spots if you have them.  Clean out your car.  Check your coat pockets.  You need to look anywhere you've magically found drugs in the past.
    • Ask the people you live with to support your sobriety by not doing drugs around you.  If you continue to be triggered you may have to move.
    • Some industries involve more drugs than others.  If you see drug use at work you may need to consider changing your employment.

Boredom and Loneliness

  • So you cut out the friends and family that were triggering you to want to use...what do you do now?  Chances are good that you are going to get lonely.  Addiction is often a very lonely thing.  Recovery doesn't have to be.  At first you probably aren't going to enjoy things much.  But with time and practice that will change as your brain heals.  
    • Go back to activities you enjoyed before your addiction took over.
    • Make a schedule and plan activities or projects that have the potential to make you feel good.
    • Attend group therapy or 12 step meetings
    • Try new things

Special Occasions

  • Enjoying a party without being intoxicated can seem daunting at first for many people.  Dinners, business meetings, holidays, and more can all be triggers to use.  Figuring out how to have fun sober takes practice.
    • Have your own transportation.
    • Leave if you feel triggered.
    • Start your own special occasions, especially related to your sobriety.
    • If you always did a holiday the same way, try it in a different place or with different people

Be kind to yourself.  You are doing an amazing thing by taking care of yourself and working to improve your life.  It's not easy, but if you take it one day at a time it gets easier.  The reward of a life not dependent on drugs is worth the challenges you face along the way.







Opioids - An Overview

12/30/2021

Below you will find a wonderful video from TEDEd about the opioid epidemic and opioid addiction.  If you are ready for a new path, contact us today!

How Long Does Addiction Recovery Take?

11/5/2021

One of the most common questions when someone enters treatment is "how long will this take".  This is a simple question that has a complex answer.  Every addict is an individual who has had their own unique path through addiction.  The road through recovery will be unique as well.  Factors like which drugs, how much, and how long will have a big influence on how long it takes to get stable.  Someone who had a year long addiction will probably have a different path than someone with a 30 year addiction.  The good news is that the biggest factor is motivation to change.  People who realize they need to change and feel passionate about learning how to manage their triggers get stable in treatment more quickly.  You can't erase your addiction overnight (you didn't develop the addiction overnight).  But you will be surprised at how quickly things can improve when you are motivated to look into what is triggering you when you want to use.  Every counseling session, meeting, video, or book you read adds tools to your tool box.  You pick up or put down the tool to help you stay sober when feeling tempted to escape reality through using drugs.    Work with your counselor to create a treatment plan that outlines what you want to change and when you want to change it.  Small goals add up to achieving big goals.  It may take you six months or a lifetime to get the level of stability where you don't want or need additional therapy to stay on track.  Study the tools you need to manage your cravings and get the support you need to stay sober today.  Because ultimately, today is all we have control of.  You deserve to spend the time, energy, and resources it takes to love your life and take care of yourself.  It takes work, but anything worth having does.

Why it is hard for addicts to feel pleasure without drugs?

10/08/2021

With time, practice, and stopping illicit drug use, you can discover or rediscover things that bring you joy. A struggle that is very common for those that are new to recovery is difficulty feeling pleasure or joy without drugs.  When you take mood altering substances, especially in large amounts or for a long period of time, it changes the way your brain regulates emotions.  Our limbic system controls pleasure and reward.  It gives us a 'hit' of feel good chemicals when we do good things (like eating, sleeping, time with loved ones, achieving goals, doing something fun, etc).  If your brain has forgotten how to produce those chemicals on it's own because you keep flooding it with chemicals unnaturally, you can develop anhedonia.  Anhedonia is a condition where your brain struggles greatly to enjoy things.  It is extremely common in those who are newly sober or struggling with long term depression.  Just like physical therapy for a physical injury, you have to exercise your brain to rebuild it's ability to function in a healthy way on it's own.  You do this by doing things you know are good for you even if they don't make you feel good in the moment.  And as you start having good feelings, it increases the ability to produce these chemicals on your own.  That way joy isn't something you have to buy.  Real joy and satisfaction can often be obtained again through effort, patience, and professional help.  Some people also have a more long term or clinical depression causing anhedonia.  A variety of psychiatric medications can help if you aren't able to produce the happy chemicals on your own. You deserve to be happy at least some of the time!  Be your own detective and figure out what might bring you joy.  Then just do it no matter how you feel about it! 

Medication Assisted Treatment information from the Wall Street Journal

09/24/2021

This wonderful piece by the Wall Street Journal gives a great overview of Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT).  It discusses how it is a best practice of patient care for people who are addicted to opioids (heroin, pain pills, etc).  It also talks about the stigma and the fact that many spaces, even within the field of addiction recovery, are still on a learning curve about how beneficial and life saving MAT can be.  

Free Naloxone and Training at Medicine Wheel 09/17/2021

09/13/2021

Naloxone is a medication that is used to reverse an Opioid overdose. Georgia Overdose Prevention will be setting up a table to distribute Naloxone kits to any at risk person who is in need of one. Please join us at the clinic on Wednesday, 09/17/2021 from 5:30-11:00 to get your free medication and training. You can also request a free kit from Georgia Overdose Prevention by clicking the link below. Naloxone saves lives! Don't let you or someone you love become a statistic. We can work together as a community to reduce the impact of the opioid epidemic. See you Friday, 09/17!

Click Here to Request a Naloxone Overdose Prevention Kit

You Can Get Addicted to Anything that Feels Good

08/20/2021

Did you know that a lot of people with substance use disorder struggle with other forms of addiction?  Anything that makes your brain feel good can become compulsive with overuse.  This means you can get addicted to things other than drugs (like love, food, sex, gambling, exercise, validation, games, television, phones, etc).  Too much of anything can turn destructive, even healthy things.  This video talks about an addiction to love.  If you have received messages throughout your life that you are difficult to love or unlovable, one of the reactions can be to seek proof that you can be loved.  Humans are not solitary creatures, we are meant to be in loving community with each other.  Learn to give yourself the love and appreciation that you are seeking from others.  Be a lover to yourself by celebrating who you are and spending time with others who do the same.  

Relapse Prevention and Addiction Triggers

07/30/2021

This video goes through a lot of the reasons addicts justify relapse or ongoing substance use. This video challenges the viewer to really be radically honest with yourself about your beliefs about drugs. It's important to consider those beliefs about relapsing and if those beliefs are actually true or a justification for relapsing. Try these tips and tricks for working through the decision making process. You can always choose a new way of dealing with feelings, difficult situations, fun, and so much more.  It's work to retrain your brain to cope with things and enjoy life without the use of drugs. You can change so much if you try new things over time and see what works to keep you on track and free of relapse.

Trauma and the Brain

06/15/2021

This video talks about trauma and its impact on the brain.  When we go through severely traumatic events like violence, abuse, neglect, humiliation, abandonment, etc your brain has to produce chemicals to deal with the stress.  Especially in the cases of sustained abuse over a long period of time, it can change your actual brain chemistry and the ability to feel safe and relaxed.  Addicts report a higher rate of experiencing trauma or abuse, especially as children.  Destigmatizing trauma and its effects on the brain helps addicts to understand their behaviors more.  If you have experienced trauma in your life, it may be important to receive additional therapy to explore how these experiences hurt you.  You may not be able to make sense of some of the terrible things that happened.  But with work you can address the impact that it had on you and your brain.  You are not your trauma, even though it can feel that way sometimes.  You can build a more stable present than your past, one decision and one day at a time.

Happiness Chemicals

05/27/21

There are chemicals in everyone's brain that drive your emotions.  The happy chemicals are Dopamine, Oxytocin, Endorphin, and Serotonin.  Drugs fill the brain with these feel good chemicals unnaturally.  With continued use, the brain struggles more and more to experience these happy feelings in a natural way.  The good news is most people can improve their limbic system.  Just like working out, it can be hard at first, but over time you get stronger and it gets easier.  Some people also have psychiatric issues where they may need a temporary or long term mood stabilizing medication in addition to doing things that make you feel good naturally.  Get back to enjoying things again.  You deserve it.

Grieving After an Overdose

05/27/21

Losing a loved one to a drug overdose is an incredibly tragic event.  This video shares the stories of several people who have experienced someone close to them dying of a drug overdose.  Grief has five major stages (Denial, Bargaining, Depression, Anger, and Acceptance).  Everyone's grieving looks different, there is no set schedule for how long it will take to stabilize after a major loss.  Overdose death is preventable with appropriate treatment.  If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction, seek help today.  When using drugs, you never know if it may be the last fix.  Fix the problems that are making you want to escape through drugs so you or your loved ones don't have to grieve this kind of tragic loss.

Rewired: A Bold New Approach To Addiction and Recovery

04/09/2021

There are many books and resources out there about addiction. I suggest you check out Rewired by Erica Spiegelman.  See below for what Good Reads has to say about this fascinating book on reframing addiction and regaining control.


"An addiction expert introduces a revolutionary and empowering approach to addiction recovery that addresses the whole self--mind, body, and spirit

Rewired is a new, breakthrough approach to fighting addiction and self-damaging behavior by acknowledging our personal power to bring ourselves back from the brink. Centered on the concept of self-actualization, Rewired will guide you towards not only physical sobriety, but a mental, emotional, and spiritual sobriety by learning to identify key principles within yourself, including authenticity, honesty, gratitude, and understanding a need for solitude.

Rewired addresses the whole self; just as addiction affects every part of one's life, so too must its treatment. By helping us to build a healthy space to support our own recovery, we can rewrite the negative behaviors that result in addiction. Usable in conjunction with or in place of 12-step programs, Rewired allows for a more holistic approach, helping to create a personalized treatment plan that is right for you.

Each section in Rewired includes:

- Personal anecdotes from the author's own struggles with alcoholism and addiction

- Inspiring true success stories of patients overcoming their addictions

- Questions to engage you into finding what is missing from your recovery

- Positive affirmations and intentions to guide and motivate

With all the variables, both physical and emotional, that play into overcoming addiction, Rewired enables us to stay strong and positive as we progress on the path to recovery. Rewired teaches patience and compassion, the two cornerstones of a new, humanist approach to curing addiction. Remember, addicts are not broken people that need to be fixed--they just have a few crossed wires."


Click here to learn more

Free Naloxone and Training at Medicine Wheel 03/17/2021

03/10/2021

Naloxone is a medication that is used to reverse an Opioid overdose. Georgia Overdose Prevention will be setting up a table to distribute Naloxone kits to any Medicine Wheel Clinic patient who would like one. Please join us at the clinic on Wednesday, 03/17/2021 from 5:30-11:00 to get your free medication and training. You can also request a free kit from Georgia Overdose Prevention by clicking the link below. Naloxone saves lives! Don't let you or someone you love become a statistic. We can work together as a community to reduce the impact of the opioid epidemic. See you 03/17!

Click Here to Request a Naloxone Overdose Prevention Kit

Making New Friends as a Part of Recovery

02/26/21

Making new friends can be challenging, especially when you are changing your life.  There is a culture and community that comes along with drugs.  Or maybe as your drug misuse escalated, you lost friends along the way. Many times, disconnecting from the drug community is a big part of changing your life and turning from addiction.  But human beings aren't meant to be alone, so how do you fill that void?  The people we spend our time and energy with influence our day to day lives. Start looking for people you adTo start with, recovery meetings are a great place to find people that at least are on the path to not use.  Maybe you have a hobby you've always wanted to try?  A church you've thought about attending?  An online recovery group?  An art class?  You will probably find people with shared interests while you are figuring out what your interests are.  The part of your brain that controls motivation to make friends is also impacted by drugs.  Flex those motivation muscles by saying hi, introducing yourself, or making small talk with someone who seems interesting.  You never know, you might click with that person more than you thought you would.

Break Your Phone Addiction

02/19/2021

How many times a day do you get distracted by your phone?  Many people who struggle with substance use disorder also have other addictive behaviors like compulsively checking the phone.  Cellphones are an important part of modern life.  There are many apps, communities, and tools we can use to help us in many positive ways.  But just like with medication or anything else, you can misuse it in a way that's not helpful or can even harm you.  Our phones are a reliable friend we can turn to when we are uncomfortable, bored, lonely, want to be distracted from something, and so much more.  But here's the thing, studies have shown that most people cannot really multitask.  When most people stop in the middle of one thing to do something else (like check your phone) it makes it harder to complete the task.  You could start by turning off your phone for a set amount of time.  Notice your emotions.  Did you feel cravings for the phone?  Does it remind you of other addictions you have struggled with when you want to make yourself feel better?  Advertisers want us to look at our phones as much as possible and spend a lot of money to get our attention.  If you reduce how much you look at your phone, what could you create with the extra time in your day?  See the video below for more information on phone addiction and how it impacts your focus, attention span, and success.

Pump the Gas or Breaks on Motivation

02/10/2021

Many people see motivation as simply a matter of will power or character.  It is much more complex than that.  You might be interested to know that motivation is directly connected to a chemical system in the human body.  It's called the limbic system.  When you are addicted to drugs that make you feel good unnaturally, that part of your brain that is motivated to do things is busy working on getting the drug.  Over time, the brain becomes more and more dependent on those chemicals to feel good until eventually nothing feels good or motivates the person but the drug.  Flex your motivation muscles by challenging yourself to do new things or things that you used to enjoy, even if it's uncomfortable at first.  It's best to start with small attainable goals.  This will help you feel more successful along the way to reaching your big goal. 


Big Goal:

-Get a Drivers License


Small Goals:

-Get the study book from the department of motor vehicles

-Study the book

-Collect the documents the book says you need to bring with you

-Pass the written test to get your learners permit

-Have someone teach you to drive in an actual car

-Pass the drivers test and get your drivers license


Do you see how breaking things down into smaller goals gives you more opportunities to celebrate your success and feel good about it?  You can improve your motivation by learning when to pump the gas or the breaks on what you feel motivated to do.


Battling Addiction During a Pandemic

02/01/2021

Below you will find a video from VICE News on battling addiction during a pandemic.  It talks at length about the ways that the addiction treatment community has had to adapt in order to serve those in need safely.  Click below to learn more about changes that have happened regarding take home medication, in person meetings, telehealth, and more.  Isolation is a huge trigger for relapse.  We all need to be creative in finding ways to connect and support each other despite needing to be farther apart.  Please remember, if you need someone to talk to, you can always call or text the CARES warm line!!  They are available from 8:30am-11:00pm every day of the year.  Please see below for further information.  

What is a Co-Occurring Disorder or Dual Diagnosis?

01/27/2021

Sometimes people take mood altering drugs to try to feel better from an untreated mental illness. You may have heard of the terms Co-Occurring Disorders or Dual Diagnosis.  What that means is that there is more than one behavioral health issue for the same patient.  So for example, a patient may be schizophrenic and also have substance use disorder.  Our master's level counselors provide referrals to patients who are in need of more specialized care in addition to the treatment that they receive at Medicine Wheel  This can include conditions like eating disorders, clinical depression, severe trauma or abuse, personality disorders, etc.  Each person's situation is unique and a patient's care should be too.  Learning how to take care of your body, heart, mind, and spirit is a learning process that takes time and practice, especially when you are first changing your relationship with drugs.  Click below to learn more about living with co-occurring disorders.

10 Celebrities Who Battled Addiction

01/22/2021

This video is about 10 celebrities who battled addiction. Addiction touches every class, creed, and walk of life.  I hope their stories inspire you!

The Stages of Change

01/20/2021

This video is about the stages of change.  I have also listed the stages below with some information.  What stage are you at right now regarding changes you want to make in your life?


Pre-Contemplation

Pre-Contemplation is when you aren't even thinking about the change yet.  Maybe you don't want to admit to yourself that things have gotten out of control.  Maybe you don't think change is possible.  Maybe you are trying to think and feel as little as possible.  Whatever the reason, you aren't quite ready to think about changing yet.


Contemplation

This is when you are actively thinking about change.  Maybe you fantasize about a life where you aren't dependent on drugs.  Maybe you experienced some consequences for your behavior that wake you up and make you realize that this is a bigger problem.  Whatever the reason, you've started to think about what it would be like if you changed.


Planning

This is when you are thinking through the steps of what it would take to change.  Would it be asking for help?  Starting a treatment program?  Reducing or stopping your drug of choice?  Attending meetings?  How do you plan to do that?  Whatever the reason, you've started to plan how you might make take actions that will result in the change you want.  


Action

Action is probably the most important step in the behavior chain!  You can think about things all day and not actually accomplish your goals.  Action is where real change happens.  So you've realized you want to change, and planned how you're going to.  But if you don't take action on your thoughts  and feelings, then the behavior chain stops.  Maybe you start treatment with a program.  Maybe you stop buying your drug of choice.  Maybe you move out of an environment that is triggering.  Whatever the reason, you've gone from thoughts and feelings to actual changes.


Maintenance

Maintenance is what you do to keep the change going.  Once you've made a change, you can maintain it.  Maybe it's going to routine meetings to help stay strong in the face of cravings.  Maybe it's making new sober friends to help support you and the changes you've made.  Maybe it's consistently taking medication.  Maybe it's starting new hobbies, spiritual practices, or jobs that will give a sense of meaning and purpose.  Whatever maintenance looks like for you, you're taking actions every day that support the changes you want.


Relapse

Relapses are often a part of the recovery process.  It's important to take responsibility for relapse and to consider how your choices contributed to the relapse.  The good news is that there are things that can be done each time to learn about your addiction and different ways to react or respond to triggering situations.  Did you watch a show about drugs that made you want to do them?  Hang out with a friend or relative that does the drug?  Have a stressful situation that you just wanted momentary escape from?  When you go back on your change, write down what might have contributed to the step backwards.  Make a plan for what you will do next time instead.  The most important thing is to not give up when you stumble.  You start the stages of change again.  Go back to contemplating why the change is important and how you are going to change it.  The process of change can be discouraging, but it's never too late to try again.  With practice, you'll gain more and more skills on how to maintain real change and stay on the right track.


New Year's Resolutions - A Motivational Speech

01/02/2021

This motivational speech is about reaching your goals.  The little steps are what make the outcome possible!  

Overcoming Holiday Triggers

12/18/2020

The holidays are different for all of us this year!  But many holiday triggers remain the same.  Click below to hear tips from Smart Recovery on how to overcome holiday triggers.

Opioid Epidemic in the News!

12/18/2020

Did you know that the company that produced OxyContin is in the news?  Yesterday, a house oversight hearing was held regarding Purdue Pharmaceuticals and the crimes that were committed.  An 8 billion dollar settlement was reached earlier this year.  The settlement money is intended to provide relief to the patients and communities that were harmed by the company's actions.  Please click below if you are interested in checking out the complete hearing.

Click Here for Complete Coverage from C-SPAN

A Big "thank you" to Georgia Overdose Prevention

12/09/2020

Medicine Wheel Clinic would like to extend a big "thank you" to Tom and all of the wonderful people at Georgia Overdose Prevention.  62 rescue kits were distributed at the facility during the event.  Stay tuned, as they will be returning for another Narcan/Naloxone distribution day in roughly 90 days.  Remember, you can also request a free kit from Georgia Overdose Prevention before then by clicking the link below. Don't let you or someone you love become a statistic. Narcan/Naloxone saves lives!  Don't run, call 911.

Click Here to Request a Naloxone Overdose Prevention Kit

The Stages of Change

12/09/2020

This video from Smart Recovery is about the stages of change.  Making long term changes is hard and relapse is often a part of the process.  Click below to learn more about getting back on track and tools to help you stay there.

Expressing Gratitude Helps!

12/09/2020

This article from Psychology Today talks about practicing gratitude and the ways it helps your mental health.

Click here to read the article

What is Seasonal Affective Disorder?

11/28/2020

Another name for Seasonal Affective Disorder is Seasonal Depression.  There are many reasons some people are more prone to depression during a certain season.  Click below to learn more from the Mayo Clinic.

Free Naloxone and Training at Medicine Wheel 12/04/2020

11/16/2020

Naloxone is a medication that is used to reverse an Opioid overdose. Georgia Overdose Prevention will be setting up a table to distribute Naloxone kits to any Medicine Wheel Clinic patient who would like one. Please join us at the clinic on Friday, 12/04/2020 from 5:30-10:30 to get your free medication and training. You can also request a free kit from Georgia Overdose Prevention by clicking the link below. Naloxone saves lives! Don't let you or someone you love become a statistic. We can work together as a community to reduce the impact of the opioid epidemic. See you 12/04!

Click Here to Request a Naloxone Overdose Prevention Kit

What is Addiction?

11/16/20

This video explains how misusing drugs causes addiction and makes it more difficult to create the chemicals that make you feel good naturally.

The Psychology of Narcissism

11/16/2020

This video is about different kinds of Narcissism.  It discusses Narcissism as a personality trait and some things that cause it.  It also explores the difference between narcissistic personality traits and someone who has an actual Narcissistic personality disorder.  Dialectic Behavioral Therapy and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy can help greatly with the anti-social qualities that come along with self absorption or Narcissism.

How to Find Your Passion 

11/13/2020

This video is about finding your passion.  Dopamine plays a big role in motivation and productivity!  Work out those dopamine muscles by trying new things.  You may be surprised at how creating things or pursuing interests can increase your dopamine to make you feel good naturally.  More creation, less consumption!

Anger Management Warning Signs

11/13/2020

This video is about noticing warning signs that you are getting angry.  If you notice the signs before you blow, you can make better decisions about what you want to do about what's angering you.

Stigma and MAT

10/21/20

This talk from Chase Holloman shares his story about how MAT changed his life.  He now helps others as a social worker and advocate for Medication Assisted Treatment.  There is a focus on misinformation about medication, access to care, and the stigma he experienced through his journey with Opioid Use Disorder, Methadone, Buprenorphine, and the Medical System.  MAT has been licensed to be used as a drug treatment in the US since 1972.  It is now getting the respect and attention that it deserves as we face the needs of those impacted by the Opioid Epidemic.  MAT changed Chase's life.  Contact us today if you are ready to change yours.

DEA National Rx Takeback

10/12/20

One of the biggest triggers to use is easy access to drugs!  Turning in old medication can help you and the community.  Below you will find a listing of locations where you can drop off unused medications on 10/24/20 (or any time!).

Family Systems & Addiction

10/12/20

Addiction impacts the whole family.  Learn more about families and how family relationships can impact addiction.

Nutrition and Addiction

10/05/20

Many people don't consider the link between nutrition and successful addiction treatment.  Eating a healthy diet provides essential nutrients to the brain to help it heal from drug misuse and create a healthier state of well being.  This video discusses a variety of different drugs and their effects on the brain, along with foods that help boost your immunity and improve brain health.  

Calm Down with Breathing Exercises

10/02/20

Did you know that your lungs are directly connected to the system that controls anxiety?  Hack your emotions with some breathing exercises! Expressing emotions is very important.  It's also important to increase control of your emotions and your ability to cope with stressful situations.  Being calmer over all reduces triggers to use for many people. Next time you feel overwhelmed by something, try to take a pause and do a breathing exercise.  It might just bring you back to center faster than you expect.

Since Getting Sober

10/02/20

This video asks people in drug treatment different questions like "What's one thing you are proud of since getting sober?", "What's one thing you do every day to take care of yourself?", etc.  The answers are interesting and inspiring!  What kind of life do you want to live?

Click Here to Watch The Video

The Science of Depression

09/18/20

This video discusses the science of depression.

Roadmap for Recovery: Creating a Routine

09/18/20

This video from SAMHSA discusses the importance of creating a routine.  One of the side effects of substance use disorder is often disorganization and reduced interest in self care.  A lack of consistency can be destabilizing.  Click below to learn more about schedules and how making certain kinds of self care a part of your regular routine.

Triggers and Cravings: What is Addiction?

09/18/20

This video from SAMHSA discusses triggers and cravings.  Getting a handle on what triggers you and how to redirect your thought process is an integral part of stabilizing addiction.  Click below to learn more about triggers and how to manage them.

September is Recovery Month!  A message from SAMHSA.

09/09/20

September is national recovery month!  SAMHSA (The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) published this speech from Dr. Elinore McCance-Katz to discuss it further.

The 5 Types of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

09/09/20

This video discusses five types of PTSD

Smart Tricks to Boost Your Mood

09/04/20

This article from Psychology Today gives some ideas to boost your mood.  You might be surprised with what you find!  

Click Here to Read the Article

About SMART Recovery Support Groups

09/04/20

The SMART in SMART recovery stands for Self-Management and Recovery Training.  Click below to learn more about how they help addicts improve the quality of their lives.

Codependency Explained

09/04/20

Codependency and Substance Use Disorder often go hand in hand.  Codependency is giving excessively or relying on another person excessively, to the point that it makes the relationship unhealthy.  The stronger and more independent both parties become, the more they can take responsibility for themselves and reduce controlling or self-neglecting behaviors.  This can improve both the relationship iteself and stability over all.

Sleep Disruption During the Pandemic

08/14/20

Many people have experienced a change in their sleep due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  This can be from changes in schedule, worry, illness, and more.  This article discusses sleep hygiene.  Sleep hygiene is basically setting things up for the best chance at good quality sleep.  Click below to read more about improving sleep quality and sleep routine.  A good night's rest sets you up for success!

Click Here to Read the Article

What Happens When You Stop Smoking?

08/12/20

This video discusses what changes with your health when you quit smoking cigarettes.

Relapse Prevention

08/05/20

This video discusses the different phases of relapse, how to notice them, and ways to keep you from giving in to drug cravings.