Monthly Archives: March 2020

Alcohol Awareness Month

Founded and sponsored by the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (now Facing Addiction with NCADD), Alcohol Awareness Month was established in 1987 to help reduce the stigma so often associated with alcohol addiction. It has since become a national movement drawing attention to the causes and effects of alcoholism increasing awareness and helping communities deal with family members who have drinking problems.

Alcohol addiction is a chronic, progressive disease, genetically predisposed and fatal if untreated. However, people can and do recover. In fact, it is estimated that as many as 20 million individuals and family members are living their lives in recovery from alcohol use!

According to NCADD, “Alcohol is the most commonly used addictive substance in the United States. 17.6 million people, or one in every 12 adults, suffer from alcohol abuse or dependence along with several million more who engage in risky, binge drinking patterns that could lead to alcohol problems. More than half of all adults have a family history of alcoholism or problem drinking, and more than 7 million children live in a household where at least one parent is dependent on or has abused alcohol.” Warning signs of alcohol abuse include:

  • Drinking to calm nerves, forget worries or boost a sad mood
  • Guilt about drinking
  • Unsuccessful attempts to cut down or stop drinking
  • Lying about or hiding drinking habits
  • Causing harm to oneself or someone else as a result of drinking
  • Needing to drink increasingly greater amounts in order to achieve desired effects
  • Feeling irritable, resentful or unreasonable when not drinking
  • Having medical, social, family or financial problems caused by drinking

Florida Center for Recovery efforts in promoting alcoholism prevention, as well as highlighting the importance of alcoholism treatment without stigma offers information about detox and treatment in the form of sharing alcohol fact sheets with the general public.

If you or a loved one is experiencing problems in your relationships at work or at home, or perhaps are dealing with financial or legal problems that are attributed to alcohol consumption, then these could be signs of “out of control drinking issue” and the time may be now to get help. For more information about alcoholism and recovery in Saint Lucie County, call Florida Center for Recovery at 800-851-3291. Help is available right now.

Start a conversation now. Click on our website link to access our chat services.

To learn more about our alcohol addiction treatment program and therapies visit us at:

Florida Center for Recovery
Clinical Excellence & Compassionate Care in a Healing Environment
Providing Addiction & Mental Health Treatment Since 2002

World Bipolar Day

World Bipolar Day (WBD), a day designed to raise worldwide awareness of the bipolar condition is celebrated every year on March 30th. This awareness day is an initiative organized by the International Bipolar Foundation in partnership with the Asian Network of Bipolar Disorder and the International Society for Bipolar Disorders.

Sadly this year, due to the ongoing challenges with COVID-19, a day known for connection and outreach will be spent in isolation. Being quarantined and cut-off from everyday routines can be particularly challenging for individuals living with bipolar conditions, due to the fact that the social support system is an integral part of maintaining wellness.

In light of these challenges, we encourage everyone to consider a “virtual” observance of WBD this year as most social events will not take place. You can still utilize social media to disseminate information and educate the public at large about bipolar conditions. Live webinars, short video recordings, social media posting, blogging are all the tools familiar to many that can help get the message out.

To help us raise awareness, help people understand the condition and eliminate the stigma of bipolar disorder you can use the hashtags trending on social media such as #WorldBipolarDay and #BipolarStrong while tagging @intlbipolar on Twitter and Instagram and @InternationalBipolarFoundation on Facebook.

Bipolar disorder affects a person’s mood, which can swing from one extreme to the other, and causes those suffering from the disorder to experience episodes of depression, mania and co-occurring addictions. People living with bipolar disorder, also known as manic-depressive illness, tend to live their lives in a manner that is significantly disrupted as the disorder impacts the person’s ability to function. There are medications that can help treat the condition and for those individuals with co-occurring addiction, there are specialized treatment programs that are very effective.

To help you cope with the challenges presented by COVID-19 click here to listen to an audio interview with Dr. LaGenia Bailey, a mental health professional who offered a wealth of advice and encouragement for listeners — tips for managing anxiety, staying connected with others and maintaining a positive outlook, even as news reports and social media flood us with updates.

If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction and a compounded bipolar condition and would like information about treatment options, please contact Florida Center for Recovery at (800) 851-3291. All calls are confidential.

To learn about our addiction treatment program and therapies visit us at:

Florida Center for Recovery
Clinical Excellence & Compassionate Care in a Healing Environment
Providing Addiction & Mental Health Treatment Since 2002

Recovery Toolbox

Stopping addiction generally is more than simply stopping drug use. Addiction takes over the life of recovering individuals – especially in those who have been abusing substances for many years. As individuals go through addiction treatment, various coping mechanisms have to be in place to support their recovery journey.

The metaphorical “recovery toolbox” includes healthy coping strategies that can help recovering individuals through difficult times when triggers and emotions get in the way.

For many in early recovery, building the recovery toolbox means reflecting back on things they once enjoyed and were passionate about before the addiction took over. Coping methods often include finding new interests or hobbies, as the recovery process is the process of rediscovering oneself.

A recovery toolbox doesn’t just include fun things, but also things that can inspire, comfort, guide, ground, calm or relieve cravings. Everyone has his or her own unique way of dealing with difficult times. At Florida Center for Recovery clients are able to explore their feelings and create their own recovery toolbox which is essential for coping with the many future challenges of recovery.

The following are just a few ideas to get your recovery toolbox started:

To Inspire You:

  • Get your daily affirmation or verse, favorite quote or mantra. Words work. A reminder or affirmation can halt destructive behaviors, raise spirits, remind you of the truth and pull you up out of destructive thoughts or actions
  • Attend a sober meeting or call a supportive friend
  • Have a shortlist of people on hand or quick access to finding local meetings. These are people who understand where you’re at, what you’re going through and can help lift you up and calm you down
  • Allocate money previously used on your addiction for a weekend getaway or a special gift for yourself

To Comfort You:

  • Breathing exercises – while focusing solely on the air going in and out of your lungs, long, deep breathing can bring a sense of calm. Proper breathing can relieve anxiety and promote balance
  • Essential oils – scent is one of the most powerful triggers for emotions and memories. A comforting scent such as lavender or eucalyptus can take you back to a place of peace.

To Relieve Cravings:

Exercise is one of the most useful healthy coping mechanisms available to anyone struggling with addiction. It doesn’t just improve your physical fitness, it helps your body recover from the damages sustained from drugs and alcohol. It can also help you sleep better, reduce stress and alleviate anxiety and depression.

To Ground You:

Meditation – guided meditation or even just taking a few minutes to find a quiet place can have major physical and mental benefits including reduced stress, increased mindfulness and relaxation

Journaling- writing down your thoughts or feelings – whether they are positive or negative – can be a release. Instead of bottling things up, you’ll be able to express yourself on paper and organize your thoughts and emotions

Focus on the positive – You may have heard the expression, “Stinkin’ thinkin’” – which refers to getting caught up in negative thoughts that can trigger drug or alcohol use or relapse. Avoid this spiral of negativity with a shift in your thought pattern and by looking for positive things. This can go hand-in-hand with practicing gratitude.

These are just a few examples of coping mechanisms that can help in your recovery from addiction. Each person will find different things that work for him or her in her own unique path.

May your recovery toolbox be filled with all the “gadgets” you need to get back to a place of comfort and ease.

Florida Center for Recovery
Clinical Excellence & Compassionate Care in a Healing Environment
Providing Addiction & Mental Health Treatment Since 2002

To learn about our addiction treatment program and therapies visit us at:

or call us at (800) 851-3291. All calls are confidential.


Online Chat at Florida Center for Recovery: Get Your Questions Answered online chat provides a great line of communication to help individuals struggling with addiction as well as their loved ones to get quick answers about treatment availability, types of programs offered, therapeutic services, insurance, and private pay options information.

Online chat services are unique in many ways. You don’t have to wait for someone to call you back, fill out a form, or go through the loop of the pre-recorded messages. Our chat operators offer immediate answers and support to anyone seeking addiction treatment. If in case Florida Center for Recovery (FCR) cannot help you or your loved one, oftentimes we can provide you with information regarding government organizations that can assist you. Online chat for addiction treatment services provides a comfortable conversational setting; opening up a warm dialogue that often is the beginning of a new life in recovery for many individuals who are seeking treatment.

FCR’s addiction treatment online chat service is provided on-site at our facility and your questions are answered by our own knowledgeable staff, which makes it easy for you to get detailed information about our facility rules, medical detox and our comprehensive therapeutic programs. We also encourage prospective clients and family members to tour our website,, which offers additional information about our facility, programs, specialized therapeutic services and addiction treatment approach. If you are pressed for time and can’t browse our website, here is a brief outline of our addiction treatment center and services:

  • All-Inclusive Inpatient Detox
  • Medical and Psychological Evaluation
  • Addiction Treatment Assessment
  • Integrated Treatment for Co-Occurring Disorders
  • Group and Individual Psychotherapy
  • Gender-Specific Counseling
  • Grief / Loss Therapy
  • Rapid Resolution Therapy® (Trauma Therapy)
  • Intensive Family Therapy
  • Relapse Prevention
  • 12 Steps & SMART Recovery®
  • Addiction Educational Series
  • Holistic and Alternative Therapies
  • Recreational Activities
  • Aftercare Programming
  • Discharge Planning
  • Chronic Relapse Program
  • Pregnant Women Program
  • Military/First Responders Program

Start a conversation now. Click on our website link to access our chat services.

To learn more about our addiction treatment program and therapies visit us at:

or call us at (800) 851-3291. All calls are confidential.

Florida Center for Recovery
Clinical Excellence & Compassionate Care in a Healing Environment
Providing Addiction & Mental Health Treatment Since 2002

What is the difference between hallucinogenic and dissociative drugs?

Hallucinogens are a class of drugs that cause hallucinations—profound distortions in a person’s perceptions of reality. Hallucinogens can be found in some plants and mushrooms (or their extracts) or can be man-made, and they are commonly divided into two broad categories: classic hallucinogens and dissociative drugs.

Essentially, hallucinogens, also known as psychedelics only cause visual, auditory and sensory hallucinations. Popular hallucinogenic drugs include LSD, psilocybin mushrooms, and peyote. Dissociative drugs will cause a sense of detachment from your body along with the visual, auditory and sensory hallucinations. PCP, Ketamine, and DXM are the most popular dissociative drugs.

The exact mechanisms by which hallucinogens and dissociative drugs cause their effects are not yet clearly understood, but research suggests that they work at least partially by temporarily disrupting communication between neurotransmitter systems throughout the brain and spinal cord that regulate mood, sensory perception, sleep, hunger, body temperature, sexual behavior, and muscle control. While for some, the experience felt can sound like an exciting way to view the world through a different lens, using these substances do not come without its risks.

What are the effects of dissociative and hallucinogenic drugs?

Dissociative drugs can have varying effects on people and everyone’s experience is different. However, users report experiencing the following:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Memory loss
  • Impaired motor function
  • Body tremors
  • Numbness 

In addition, individuals who take lower doses may experience:

  • Disorientation
  • Confusion
  • Changes in sensory perceptions (sight, sound, shapes)
  • Hallucinations
  • Feelings of detachment 
  • Increase in blood pressure, heart rate, respiration and body temperature

Those who take high doses may further experience:

  • Hallucinations
  • Physical distress
  • Extreme paranoia, panic, fear, anxiety, aggression
  • Overdose when mixed with other depressants such as alcohol

It is extremely difficult to accurately determine how individuals will react to dissociative and hallucinogenic drugs because everyone’s experience is different. Some long term effects of these drugs such as PCP can be speech difficulties, memory loss, suicidal thoughts and social withdrawal. In addition, some people report using a hallucinogenic drug once and never fully recovering from its effects, a condition called, Hallucinogen Persisting Perception Disorder (HPPD) which is essentially a never-ending ‘trip.’ People who take dissociative drugs with alcohol or other CNS depressants run the risk of experiencing fatal respiratory problems that can eventually result in death.


Dealing with dissociative drug addiction can be a major issue. This category of drugs provides an easy escape from reality and some people may begin to rely on it just to get through their day. If you or a loved one is struggling with dissociative and hallucinogenic drug addiction, please contact us for treatment information.

Xanax and Alcohol: Dangerous Combination

Xanax is a benzodiazepine that has been largely used in the US for the treatment of anxiety. As a schedule III substance with low potential for abuse, many do not understand that this drug can be very dangerous as it does create a physical and psychological dependence. In fact, benzodiazepine has been associated with an increase of benzo related overdoses. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, benzo related overdoses have risen from 1,135 in 1999 to 11,537 in 2017- that is a 916% increase.

Drugs like Xanax slow down and suppress the activity of crucial organs such as the lungs. When these drugs are abused or used in a different way than it was prescribed for, it can cause serious health complications and even death. Although it is possible to overdose on Benzodiazepines alone, prescription medications such as Xanax generally are associated with overdoses that were the result of mixing the drug with alcohol. Whether mixing the two substances (the benzo and the alcohol) accidentally or intentionally the dangers associated with this combination can be fatal. The reason is, Xanax and Alcohol are both central nervous system depressant and they both release GABA (a neurotransmitter that sends chemical messages through the brain and the nervous system), which decreases and slows the bodily and nerve functions. Slowing down bodily functions will lead to a drop in blood pressure and slowed breathing. In some cases, breathing can completely stop leading to a blackout and even death. Taking the drugs together may also lead to dangerous behaviors such as driving while intoxicated or taking other serious risks. Even though the accidental mixing of these drugs accounts for a number of overdoses every year, it is the intentional mixing of the drugs that has become a serious cause of concern. Many individuals struggling with anxiety try to self-medicate by mixing alcohol and benzos in the hopes of heightening the “positive” effects they experience, and by doing this they significantly heighten the negative and dangerous effects of each drug.

Dealing with alcohol or benzodiazepine addiction can be difficult and like any other addiction, it is imperative to find a treatment that addresses both the mental health issue and substance addiction. If you or someone you love has been impacted by an anxiety disorder and addiction and are looking for treatment options, please contact us today at Florida Center for Recovery. Our trained professionals are ready to help you with your treatment and recovery process.

To learn more about our addiction treatment program and therapies visit us at:

For more information about admissions, insurance and private pay options, please contact us at (800) 851-3291. All calls are confidential.

Florida Center for Recovery
Clinical Excellence & Compassionate Care in a Healing Environment
Providing Addiction & Mental Health Treatment Since 2002

Unresolved Grief and Addiction

There are many life events that cause extreme sadness and commonly those grieving and remembering the past loss and abuse develop, what is called, complicated grief. When simple grief turns into complicated grief, it can become a chronic, debilitating mental health condition. This case of grief is highly emotional and often results in anger, frustration, depression, and anxiety. Although when grieving, all these emotions are normal reactions that should pass over time, it can be hard for some individuals to cope with all those negative feelings at the same time. In this weakened state, complicated grief can lead some to seek means of self-medication to ease their pain. Some drink and some rely on drugs. Using alcohol or other substances to deal with, or neglect dealing with feelings may only numb the pain temporarily but does not take it away. Even worse is that, in this situation, many struggling with grief develop an addiction as they become physically or psychologically dependent on the substances they use. The most common form of dealing with grief has been drinking to forget. It is important to note that since alcohol is a depressant, this form of “pain relief” actually makes the person feel worse by amplifying depression, anxiety and stress.

When grief is self-medicated with drugs and alcohol specialized treatment is needed to address both substance abuse and addiction along with the symptoms of deep grief. Rehab Centers offering dual-diagnosis programs, also known as co-occurring disorders treatment programs offer the best chance of full recovery from both issues. When an addiction treatment does not address both problems, untreated grief will leave individuals with unresolved emotional issues which often make them vulnerable to relapse. A well-structured addiction treatment program provides therapeutic services that help individuals cope and accept their loss, eventually assisting them to come to terms with it. Being capable of coping and accepting loss does not mean the individual is OK with what happened in the past, it just means that it places him or her in a situation where the individual gets better and starts to live a productive life with new goals.

If you or a loved one is dealing with substance abuse and believe it’s associated with grief, we at Florida Center for Recovery can help. We offer comprehensive and specialized inpatient addiction treatment programs with evidence-based therapeutic services and Rapid Resolution Therapy (trauma therapy) to address the underlying reasons of the problem. Whether the grief is linked to the loss of a family member or friend, a divorce or other type of deep-seated loss from the past, Rapid Resolution Therapy can be the answer, as it has helped many recovering clients resolve grief and past trauma in as little as two sessions.

To learn more about our addiction treatment program and therapies visit us at:

For more information about our drug and alcohol rehab programs, admissions, insurance and private pay information please contact us at (800) 851-3291. All calls are confidential.

Florida Center for Recovery
Clinical Excellence & Compassionate Care in a Healing Environment
Providing Addiction & Mental Health Treatment Since 2002


The goal of addiction treatment is to help individuals who are struggling with substance addiction issues to once again find enjoyment in their everyday activities without the need for substances. For that reason, many well-structured addiction treatment programs pair recreational activities with treatment to help individuals develop coping strategies to manage the challenges that come with recovery.

At Florida Center for Recovery (FCR), we combine talk therapy and other evidence-based addiction treatment methods with recreational activities in order to maximize the physical, mental and emotional wellness of our clients. Offering education through the treatment process, for the goal of minimizing triggers in the life of individuals struggling with addiction, has helped many to maintain a healthy lifestyle and achieve an enduring recovery.

Our therapeutic recreational activities can be experienced with peers in a group setting or the individual can set his or her own personal routine. For example, getting active may include team-building or taking part in sports activities where clients can set their own exercise routine at our fitness center. For group activities, clients can choose sports such as basketball and volleyball games. The goal of fostering recreational activities during treatment is to help recovering individuals establish a new healthy lifestyle to ward off stress, anxiety and boredom which are the main culprits of lapse and relapse. Although we encourage and promote certain activities in our center during the treatment, it is important for recovering individuals to explore leisure options that fit their preferences and meet their individual needs outside the treatment setting and after discharge.

According to an article in the Journal of Psychoactive Drugs on “A Holistic Approach to Substance Abuse Treatment,” patients also show improved self-esteem, self-confidence and self-identity when recreational activities were used in treatment. All of these states of minds support a positive change in the recovering individual’s overall mental health, therefore increasing his or her chances of a successful recovery.

FCR’s recreational activities are offered within our inpatient addiction treatment program as optional experiences and will vary based on program settings and clients’ interests. Activities included as part of treatment are therapeutic or educational, and participation is generally not mandatory but highly encouraged.

Using program materials and fitness center equipment is a privilege and clients need to speak with a Recovery Aide to coordinate procedures and schedule, when and where applicable, before the use.

For more information about our inpatient rehab program in Florida please contact us at (800) 851-3291. All calls are private and confidential.

Florida Center for Recovery
Clinical Excellence & Compassionate Care in a Healing Environment
Providing Addiction & Mental Health Treatment Since 2002